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It's funny.  Laugh. Entertainment Games

Ubisoft Steals 'No-CD Crack' To Fix Rainbow 6: Vegas 2 434

Posted by Soulskill
from the fighting-fire-with-fire dept.
Ariastis writes "UbiSoft has long been against No-CD patches. Referring to them on their forums would get you warned or banned. But now, they have just officially released a patch for Rainbow 6: Vegas 2, which, when opened in a hex editor, can easily be identified as coming from the RELOADED scene group, not from UbiSoft programmers. A picture of hex analysis is shown in the story. See? Piracy isn't that bad! It saves you from having to code fixes for your own games! (Watch the drama on the Ubi Forums before it gets scrubbed clean.)"
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Ubisoft Steals 'No-CD Crack' To Fix Rainbow 6: Vegas 2

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  • So... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Spad (470073) <slashdot@spad.YEATSco.uk minus poet> on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:14AM (#24252243) Homepage

    Presumably the patch has been nuked for Stolen.Crack?

    • by aliquis (678370)

      Last time I ever download anything -Ubisoft!

      • So basically ubisoft had broken their game with the CD protection DRM, something that nearly all games companies include, but I haven't the faintest idea why this is still a sane thing to do..

        So now they have to use an "illegal" (or so they keep telling us) third-party crack to break their own DRM.
        Or more likely, someone else's DRM that they purchased for a large sum of money, only to introduce bugs into their game and annoy their customers.

        Sounds like great value for money to me! :)

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by aliquis (678370)

          Why would it introduce bugs?

          And of course they can disable the DRM. I would assume some of their developers was like "oh well I'll link the crack for those who need it" and well ..

    • Re:So... (Score:5, Funny)

      by kestasjk (933987) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:15AM (#24252429) Homepage
      Ubisoft stole a program released by a group who help others to steal theirs?

      The monsters!
      • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Goldberg's Pants (139800) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:24AM (#24252459) Journal

        Two wrongs don't make a right, dude.

        What cracks me up (pun intended) is the fact that Ubisoft have been UTTER BASTARDS in the past. If you posted complaining about Starforce on their forums, their employees would accuse you of being a hacker, a pirate etc... People get banned for posting links to cracks. HAVE been banned for posting links to THIS VERY CRACK.

        This priceless, and utterly UTTERLY hilarious. A major software company relying on a cracking group to fix their stupid issues that their choice of DRM caused.

        The only way this could be ANY funnier is if it was Electronic Arts instead, and even that would be pushing it as Ubi's attitude toward their consumers in regards to DRM is a hundred times more offensive than I've ever seen EA be.

        • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by joaommp (685612) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @07:08AM (#24252767) Homepage Journal

          Regardless of what support the company has given its costumers, remember that the crack was made to circumvent anti-piracy schemes.

          There wouldn't be any need for anti-piracy schemes if people were trustworthy and didn't steal software.

          People use pirated software -> companies lose money -> companies invest in trying to avoid illegitimate usage of their software -> copy-protection schemes are put in place -> problems with copy-protection schemes arise -> people who don't give a shit about the fact that the software was a result of an investment in both equipment, marketing and man hours still keep finding ways to pirate the software.

          So everyone uses cracks to go around copy protection schemes when they're not supposed to, and then when that company uses that crack to fix a problem, everyone is outraged. So it's OK if you steal from a company, but it's NOT OK if a company uses, to fix their own product and provide the support everyone cries for, something that was made specifically to target that company's product making it easier to pirate.

          You know, people have worked to develop the product. Money has been invested. It's a company, it's supposed to make a profit, not to create software out of pure charity.

          And no, two wrongs don't make it a right, you're right when you said it. And everyone should have thought that even if the company sucks at supporting its users (first wrong) that doesn't forgive anyone for pirating software (second wrong). I'm not saying that you shouldn't be able to fully use the product you bought. But does anyone here honestly believe that only the guys that bought the product are the ones using the crack? I don't think so.

          This sounds like hypocrisy to me.

          Just be glad that now that there is an "official" fix for your problems.

          • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by c6gunner (950153) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @08:09AM (#24253021)

            There wouldn't be any need for anti-piracy schemes if people were trustworthy and didn't steal software.

            Yeah, and people wouldn't need locks and car alarms if there were no car thieves. I'd still find it more than a little funny if every time you locked your keys in the car, you had to call up a car thief to open it for you. In fact, I'm pretty sure I'd be laughing my ass off, just like I am at Ubi.

            How's that for a car analogy? :)

            • Actually... (Score:5, Interesting)

              by hailukah (1270532) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @09:16AM (#24253385)

              ...had to call up a car thief to open it for you.

              That happened to my uncle.

              A cop showed up seeing him trying to break into his own car, hollered at some kids sitting in the grass by an overpass, and told them they wouldn't get in trouble if they unlocked the door. It was open in about 30 seconds.

              • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

                by Anonymous Coward
                were they black?
              • by QuantumRiff (120817) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @10:04AM (#24253671)

                Couple of years ago, we had a party at our house, and some girls locked themselves out of their car. Roommate got a long piece of metal, and was in the process of opening the door of the car, which was parked on the side of the street, when the cops drove by. They stopped and asked if everything was okay, (they looked fresh out of the academy) and my roommate told them, "Its okay, I've been doing this since you were in grade school!"

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Mike89 (1006497)

              I'd mod you up but I have no mod points.

              To the parent poster, the copy-protection shit to "prevent" piracy CLEARLY DOES NOT WORK. In fact, to me, it's a deterrent. I bought the Sims for my family and tried to burn a backup copy because I knew they'd scuff up the CD. Wouldn't burn due to protection on the CD.

              What'd I do? Took it back to the store and downloaded a copy. Fuck you, EA / Maxis. They're grateful they don't need the CD to play anymore and I'm grateful I don't need to worry about it getting wrecked

              • As has been said many times here over the years, if you don't like a product, don't buy it. Video games aren't medical care or food, so you sure don't need to buy them (hint: consider buying your family a book, or better yet, getting them outside to exercise). And EA didn't mislead, you knew they had DRM on it. So you are hostile at someone not misleading you trying to protect their product?

                I've used no-CD cracks simply because I could. But cursing a company for trying to stop piracy? Waste of energy and
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by xtracto (837672) *
              <i>. I'd still find it more than a little funny if every time you locked your keys in the car, you had to call up a car thief to open it for you. How's that for a car analogy? :)</i>

              Quite close, but it is even worse. In this case it is not YOU would have called the car thief. In this case you would have gone to "Ford" or wherever you bought your car, and the people at the "Ford authorized service" had to call the thief to open your car...

              har har... I can just say that what Ubisoft did is amazing
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              I'd still find it more than a little funny if every time you locked your keys in the car, you had to call up a car thief to open it for you.

              Well, the more accurate analogy would be if locksmiths used tools developed by car thieves to unlock your car when you locked the keys inside. And guess what? They do.

          • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Mattsson (105422) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @09:16AM (#24253383) Homepage Journal

            A copy-protection must never stop a legitimate customer from using the product they've bought, though.
            If that sometimes happen and the company responsible doesn't come up with a fix, that legitimize the creation of 3'rd party fixes, or cracks.

            So even though the copy-prevention schemes arose from piracy, today, piracy is sometimes necessary due to copy-prevention schemes.

            • Re:So... (Score:5, Interesting)

              by houstonbofh (602064) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @11:10AM (#24254103)
              Furthermore, the commercial software companies are in competition with the pirates, and price is not the only factor. (For many not even the main factor) If it is easier to use the pirate version, or the pirate version is more stable, or the pirate version does not turn off parts of your system, it becomes more attractive, regardless of price.

              Look at the music industry... Pay a lot of a drm'd music file that won't play in your car's mp3 player, or get a high quality mp3 for free? And what would you choose if both were free? What if the DRMd junk was free, and the mp3 was not? Amazing how the better product usually wins regardless of price.
          • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by morari (1080535) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @09:43AM (#24253525) Journal

            I use no CD cracks on all of my legally bought games. Having to put discs in and take them out is kind of cumbersome when I have them all safely stored in a metal CD binder. If I wanted to switch through game discs all day I'd play my console instead.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              I actually can't play games with the CD in the drive - my laptop slows to a molasses-like crawl whenever data is being read from the CD drive. This is true whether it's a music CD, a DVD, or a video game's CD. If I don't make a disc image and use something like Daemon Tools, then my games are literally unplayable.

              Some might say it's my fault for buying a computer with this issue (as if I knew before I bought it), and others might say it's Dell's fault, or whatever - but while I find piracy morally wrong (

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            remember that the crack was made to circumvent anti-piracy schemes.

            And there always is a crack. Any even remotely popular game -- even quite a few indie games -- have their copy protection cracked wide open within weeks of release, if not days.

            There wouldn't be any need for anti-piracy schemes if people were trustworthy and didn't steal software.

            That isn't going to happen, so we have to deal with the reality that people will steal software.

            Now the question becomes, what is the point of an anti-piracy scheme if it doesn't work? (See above.)

            So everyone uses cracks to go around copy protection schemes when they're not supposed to, and then when that company uses that crack to fix a problem, everyone is outraged.

            You're assuming that this is the same "everyone". You know there's more than one person on the Internet, right? More than one group?

            Ubisof

          • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by mxs (42717) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @10:59AM (#24254027)

            There wouldn't be any need for anti-piracy schemes if people were trustworthy and didn't steal software.

            You crack me up. No, really, you do.

            Do you know who gets hit by those anti-piracy "measures" ? Not the pirates, that much I can promise you. It's the regular customers who have to deal with this, I'm sorry to say, shit. Pirates get a pre-cracked bug-fixed ISO downloads that just work. They also get game updates working sooner than those sorry fools who bought the game at an online download store (the legitimate kind, that is).

            This anti-piracy bullshit does absolutely nothing to prevent, you know, piracy. It is not necessary.

            People use pirated software -> companies lose money

            BS argument #1. Let me bring a BS argument of my own ! People share software -> other people like it and buy that software, having had the opportunity to test it -> company makes more money than it is allegedly "losing". This argument is just about as full of holes as yours is.

            -> companies invest in trying to avoid illegitimate usage of their software

            By being good corporate citizens, offering excellent support for their legitimate customers, offering a better experience than "pirates" ever could and focusing on their legitimate customers instead of wasting countless development and testing hours on stuff that provably does not work and only annoys regular customers ?

            -> copy-protection schemes are put in place

            And usually cracked a few days BEFORE the game hits store shelves. Excellent.

            -> problems with copy-protection schemes arise

            PREDICTABLE problems. KNOWN problems. You don't think the QA department knows about these problems ? CARES ?

            -> people who don't give a shit about the fact that the software was a result of an investment in both equipment, marketing and man hours still keep finding ways to pirate the software.

            Why do you care about these people ? They are not gonna buy your software anyway. They might if they get a better experience for a reasonable price, they might not. In the meantime you are losing gazillions of customers to DRM issues, fixes for direct2drive issues that only exist because nobody bothered to check that the protection doesn't blow up on those releases, etc. -- good going.

            People are gonna copy your stuff. You cannot make them not do it. This is a known fact, a fact that has been known for over 20 years. There is no copy protection scheme that has not been utterly broken.

            So everyone uses cracks to go around copy protection schemes when they're not supposed to,

            And scratching their heads asking "why did I pay for this shit, again ?" And making a mental note not to buy it the next time. Or, if they really want to play it and really don't want to deal with this ... shit ... Pirate it straight away. At least you know the scene guys have quality control -- when their releases don't work, they get nuked.
            That is a very sad state of affairs. Pragmatically, you are better off using a pirated version.

            and then when that company uses that crack to fix a problem, everyone is outraged.

            Not so much that they are using the crack, moreso that they are banning people who previously talked about that same crack, should not actually be NEEDING that crack if they had ANY developers left (you see, disabling this "copy protection" is as easy as, you know, not applying the copy protection installer to the executable you get out of the compiler), etc.

            So it's OK if you steal from a company,

            Who said that ?

            but it's NOT OK if a company uses, to fix their own product and provide the support everyone cries for,

            Credit where credit is due, huh ?

        • But! (Score:5, Funny)

          by Snaller (147050) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @10:35AM (#24253877) Journal

          "Two wrongs don't make a right, dude."

          Two wrights made an airplane!

      • Re:So... (Score:5, Informative)

        by ozmanjusri (601766) <(moc.liamtoh) (ta) (bob_eissua)> on Saturday July 19, 2008 @06:13AM (#24252595) Journal
        Ubisoft stole a program released by a group who help others to steal theirs?

        CD cracks aren't just for stealing games.

        One of the first things I do when I buy a game is download the CD crack so I don't have to keep track of where the install disks are.

        I bought the game, it's mine. I can do whatever the fuck I like with it, including disabling annoying shit like DRM.

  • How could they? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jeremy Visser (1205626) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:18AM (#24252255) Homepage

    Stealing the intellectual property of these crackers that they so rightfully deserve -- how could Ubisoft do such a thing?

    On a serious note, is Ubisoft actually legally allowed to distribute these cracked executables, because they are of their own product?

    Mind, I don't get why, because they would have the original source code anyway.

    • Warcraft 3 v1.21b patch didn't had any changes in the game except nocd, which was indeed very nice, one do wonder why it took them so long though.

      http://pc.qj.net/Warcraft-3-patch-v1-21b-released-with-no-CD-feature/pg/49/aid/113191 [qj.net]

      • They did it for Starcraft too.... Blizzard probably realized that:
        a) These things are so common nowadays that anyone who is going pirate the game can easily find one and
        b) They save money in the long run by having to replace significantly less discs as they get old, dirty, and scratched.
        • by aliquis (678370)

          But Blizzard doesn't replace them do they? Afaik they ask for money for a replacement disk :(

          This is my TFT-CD:
          http://cdcrack.istheshit.net/ [istheshit.net]

          But I've borrowed a friends instead...
          (On a mac ROC CD when you played TFT wasn't enough either, it's in Windows, fucked up because I hate looking for the CD and I never used NoCD crack once I had the original because I didn't wanted to risk getting banned from bnet.)

          And no, I have no idea why they bother to check for the CD, it will be broken anyway so why bother about

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by ildon (413912)

          They created the no-CD patches to coincide with their "Blizzard Account" system which allows you to buy their games online and then download them. I'm assuming they wanted a consistent platform for all their users, and it doesn't exactly make sense to have someone purchase and download a game and then have to wait for the CD to arrive in the mail just to start it up.

          Additionally, if you already own the game, you can enter your CD key on the site to gain the ability to download them directly from Blizzard.

    • Re:How could they? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by malkavian (9512) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:56AM (#24252555) Homepage
      Just semantics, I know, but UBISoft didn't steal anything. They haven't deprived the originators of any use of their CD crack.
      I found the article both amusing, intriguing, and irritating in that they're playing the games of the *IAA on the "theft" side.
      What they have done is infringe copyright, which is just not playing fair. And for one of the "big boys" in the industry, who definitely do make money from releases, and continued patching (patches are, or should be, costed into the maintenance cycle of any computer product).

      Legally, I'd say UBI are in the wring distributing the patch, as it is comprised of code they have not written. However, the cracker group would have to go and press charges to have this settled. And I'm not so sure they would be so happy to drop their facade of anonymity for this (all the companies that would love to know who they are, for the sake of taking a shot at copyright protection circumvention charges etc.).

      As things stand, I don't think UBI will get the full legal hot water, however, they've just taken a massive PR hit, and the whole "holier than thou" stance taken by the games industry on copy protection has also been tainted.

      As to why a patch has been released that's copied.. The no-cd cracks are widely distributed, so when they're 'mature', you have a very heavily tested patch, that may just fix an issue you need fixed. You can either spend ages getting the dev to identify the bug, work out how to fix it without breaking other things in the product, get a testing department to exhaustively test it to make sure it doesn't break, pass it through QA to make sure it's not affected any other things adversely, and have it passed backwards and forwards if things don't seem quite right.. Or you can grab some existing highly tested in volume code that does the job nicely.

      Efficiency says that the second is the best option. However, to do that, they'd need the ok from the crack group, which the organisation probably wouldn't want to attribute on a release document. The joys of politics getting in the way of progress.
      Given that they're not willing to attribute or deal with the 'pirates', then alas, their only option should have been to go their own way.

      Methinks someone was a tad lazy and thought "it's all closed, who'll know?" without thinking it through.. After all, how does anyone work out how things have altered without going through patches with the proverbial microscope? You can pretty much guarantee that someone would find out the similarities...

      Of course, there's also the option that one of the UBI devs is also in the crack group and simply reused the code s/he wrote in the first place, which would be even more interesting (and from an 'unofficial' aspect, probably more useful for UBI, as they can comply with uninformed investors clamoring for DRM, and at the same time slake the appetites of the masses who don't want the damned DVD in the drive as it's a pain in the arse! Best of both worlds).
  • by Planky (761118) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:19AM (#24252259) Homepage

    Someone was either being very lazy or thought it was funny. I'm glad they didn't censor the forums to hell and back ala Apple...

    Last post from the now locked thread:

    The file was removed from the site over a week ago now and the matter is being thoroughly investigated by senior tech support managers here at Ubisoft. Needless to say we do not support or condone copy protection circumvention methods like this and this particular incident is in direct conflict with Ubisoft's policies.

    • by ThePhilips (752041) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @06:56AM (#24252721) Homepage Journal

      Since I work in 3rd tier support now, let me translate that into human language:

      The working fix was removed as soon as management of department responsible for actually releasing fixes complained very loud. The matter is being thoroughly investigated, but as of now no easy scapegoat can be found, since "fix" actually worked. Also, manager of sales asked me to retype here the stuff from our business booklet: "we do no support or condone copy protection circumvention methods." Nice. Gamers have to thank some poor chap from support department who put the fix up so that gamers can play the game they have paid money for, but please remember, since you already paid to Ubi, we can care less whether you can play the game or not. Ha-ha.

      My theory would be that Ubi support manager had authorized that one of his subordinates would put fix on their site. Because they had a flood of complaints and they had to respond to customers. Luckily, support departments are least responsible for anything. Since it takes that long, the dispute between support, development and D2D folks really heated up. From my experience, I'd say, some manager had intentionally authorized that - just to have a chance to say something (probably about game quality) aloud.

  • by ElAurian (133656) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:19AM (#24252263) Homepage

    It's entirely in the spirit of online freedom that all who use cracks live by. It's also a quiet nod to the expertise of those who wrote the crack.

    I think we should all take this as a good sign of further co-operation in times to come.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      That. Or UbiSoft found the cracked version runs better, smoother and faster.

      I heard story from friend whose another friend bought Pro/E, and could not install from the official CDs. Finally, running out of time, he installed cracked Pro/E right in front of their representative which worked like a charm.

      Of course he has not asked for refund as he wants to keep the license to show, just in case.

    • Furthermore (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Mateo_LeFou (859634) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:29AM (#24252473) Homepage

      It's not stealing if the original programmers were not deprived of anything. Whether the good guys ("pirates") do it or the bad guys (the "content industry") do it, unauthorized copying is not stealing and never has been.

  • by neokushan (932374) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:20AM (#24252267)

    Perhaps I'm a bit silly thinking this, but I have a lot of respect for the majority of the cracking scene.
    Time and time again they've always proved just how talented and resourceful they can be.
    I say props to them! At the very least, Ubi should sack whatever middle-manager that decided to release this as an "official" patch or lazy programmer that decided to submit this rather than build a proper executable and give THEM a job instead. I've had more "official" patches from both Ubi and EA (And a few others) break stuff than dodgy, pirate hacks.

    • Ubi should sack whatever middle-manager that decided to release this as an "official" patch or lazy programmer that decided to submit this rather than build a proper executable and give THEM a job instead.

      Wait a second. You're suggesting that Ubisoft should be taken to task stealing some cracker's hard work? Sounds to me like fair play. Why waste Ubisoft resources on making a patch when they can just steal one?

      • by neokushan (932374) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:48AM (#24252359)

        It's not that they stole it, it's more that they couldn't be bothered to make an official one.
        I mean, when you think about it - what if that crack WAS dodgy? What if it had a time bomb in it that wiped out your hard drive after a certain date? I don't think for a second that Ubi disassembled the cracked .exe and checked it for irregularities or they'd have noticed the cracking group's moniker and removed it. That, plus it would have been easier to recompile a new one from the source they have.
        Of course, I trust the group but I know full well that if it DID have something dodgy in it, I'd be fully responsible for it and have to accept that it was my fault.
        But in this case, Ubi could have been under some serious shit if such a thing had happened.
        There's really no excuse, it's sheer laziness on their part.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by cliffski (65094)

          Of course, I trust the group

          why? Do you know who they are? where they are from? know the personally? You know who are current members of the groups, and what their motives are?

          Personally I do not trust anonymous groups of coders on the internet who cannot be tracked down to run exes on my machine. If ubisoft format my hard drive, I have legal recourse against a known company. The same if my company trashes your machine. Your defence against some random group of kids on the internet is basically fuck all.

          I'm surprised how much risk pe

          • by Thiez (1281866) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @07:30AM (#24252859)

            Reloaded has existed for quite a while and as far as I know they've never put malware in their cracks. While it's obvious there is always a risk involved when you run an executable (no matter where it came from), I'd say you are reasonably save using their cracks. Probably more safe than running DRM'ed software, since that software tries to hook itself into all kinds of important parts of you operating system.

            • Re:Pot vs. Kettle (Score:5, Informative)

              by Kjella (173770) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @09:52AM (#24253597) Homepage

              Reloaded has existed for quite a while and as far as I know they've never put malware in their cracks.

              No cracker groups of any consequence has ever put malware in anything as far as I know, it's 99% others using a virus-adding tool and distributing their own trojaned version of their cracks. Still, it's not easy to tell one from the other.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Ma8thew (861741)
        This is a No-CD crack, which has a legitimate use. If you lose your CD for instance. The hacking group in question hasn't stolen anything of Ubisoft's.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by cliffski (65094)

      its always easier to break and destroy than to fix and create.

      I'm sure there are some very talented people making nocd cracks. I wish those people would actually use their efforts to create good new games, rather than just encouraging games devs to spend yet more time and yet more money creating better stronger DRM.
      We are all very impressed with their l33t coding skills. Maybe now they could do something constructive with them?

      • by masterzora (871343) <masterzora@@@gmail...com> on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:17AM (#24252433) Homepage
        How is this not constructive? Game devs insist on checking for a CD in my drive which leads a a good number of problems that, as a paying customer, I honestly shouldn't have to deal with. These people provide a legitimate service by allowing to play the game without having worry about these issues, a right I should have when I buy the game.
    • by ThePhilips (752041) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @07:12AM (#24252785) Homepage Journal

      I frankly stopped buying PC games. Or to put it better I have improved my game buying routine:

      1. Go to review sites and pick game which has good user comments. Official reviews are written by some score-whores and rarely reflect actual gaming experience.

      2. Go to torrent site of your choosing and download the game. If game downloads fast: +1

      3. Try to install and play game. If it plays without crack: +5 (== the game is popular)
      If crack is needed - continue.

      4. Find a working crack. If crack is found easily: +5
      If no crack is found or cracks are not working: throw away the game. If it wasn't worth time to crack, doubtfully it would be worth my time to play it.

      5. Actually play the game. If game is good: +10

      6. If games plays good (with easy to find crack), buy it.

      Now it all boils down to simple fact: was game compromised with DRM or devels instead choose to make game better and not waste their time on crippling users' experience.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by PeterBrett (780946)

        I frankly stopped buying PC games.

        I stopped buying PC games in shops.

        Nowadays, I fire up Steam, browse to the game I want, click "Buy", enter my details, confirm the order, go away, come back a couple of hours later, and play it.

        This is a heck of a lot easier, especially as I can look up reviews while browsing.

        Oh wait! I'm defending Steam. That must make me (-1, IDon'tAgreeWithYou), I suppose!

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by houstonbofh (602064)
          I was going to post "Steam is the devil!" but with some many devils around these days they don't look too bad anymore.
  • License (Score:5, Funny)

    by Timosch (1212482) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:23AM (#24252279)
    Under which license is the crack redistributed? Does it allow including it in a closed-source project?
  • Stealing? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by masterzora (871343) <masterzora@@@gmail...com> on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:46AM (#24252351) Homepage

    I can already see the torrent of people coming in to call all slashdot users hypocrites for calling this stealing but defending "piracy" as not stealing and all that, so I figure I might as well clear this up as soon as possible:

    Thing the first: Slashdot is not one person, it is many people, so it's not inconsistent for vocal members of the community to call this stealing but piracy not stealing.

    Thing the second: "steals" is still a bad word here. "Steals credit" would be better, if anything, but I still think the wording is bad anyway.

    Thing the third: most pirates at least hold to the moral ground of giving credit where credit is due, which is clearly not the case here.

    Hopefully this will head off those silly comments. Eh, who am I kidding, it's Slashdot. I'll probably wake up to 50 of them. Oh well, I tried.

    • Re:Stealing? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Opportunist (166417) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @06:13AM (#24252597)

      I think that in the books of many /. readers, stealing credit is actually worse than stealing a product. Many people here have an academic background, so they are very familiar with the problems of credit stealing, few, OTOH, are in sales, so the problem of stealing a product isn't so much of a topic.

      I have to admit, I'm in the same boat. Personally, I'd give it a shrug and a "turnaround is fair" comment when UBI simply said that they didn't want to reinvent the wheel so they just took an existing crack and used it for their own purposes. Not saying anything and claiming it as their own development is what irks me.

    • Re:Stealing? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by RonnyJ (651856) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @06:57AM (#24252727)

      The label of 'stealing' is in the story headline itself. If Slashdot ran a story on music/software piracy with a headline labelling those people in the same way, I am sure there would be far more critical posts.

  • by blind biker (1066130) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @04:59AM (#24252385) Journal

    Seriously. If there were no NO-CD cracks, I suspect companies like Ubisoft would make lots LESS money than they do now. I usually buy the game, download the NO-CD crack, and play. I'll never forget how the CD in my previous ThinkPad almost died from overwork before I saved it (and myself from going insane) with the NO-CD for HOMM IV.

    It has come to the point that I do NOT buy a game until a NO-CD crack exists for it.

  • French? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by y4h0oo (658404) <y4h0oo@@@yahoo...fr> on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:06AM (#24252395)
    ...Why is that, Ubisoft?

    (1) You're posting an illegal crack that violates YOUR OWN RULES on piracy
    (2) You stole someone else's crack. Couldn't bother making your own? Sheesh. Now THAT'S French for you!



    This french surrender business and now this "whatever is retarded is french" is so obtuse!
    It's like saying all americans are morons and deserve Bush.
    • Re:French? (Score:5, Informative)

      by masterzora (871343) <masterzora@@@gmail...com> on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:10AM (#24252401) Homepage
      Well, Ubisoft is French, so it's not exactly a case of someone saying "whatever is retarded is French" so much as "it's French and therefore retarded". You may still disagree with *that* statement, but it's still a vastly different one than what you said.
    • Re:French? (Score:5, Funny)

      by McGiraf (196030) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:53AM (#24252541) Homepage

      All ze Americans are morons and deserve Bush.

    • Re:French? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by MagdJTK (1275470) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @06:03AM (#24252579)

      Very true. Now I hate the French as much as the next Briton, but I feel the American accusation of cowardice during the Second World War is resting on pretty thin ice.

      "Surrendering? That's inexcusable! What you want to do is refuse to help for several years even though your supposed friends are getting killed in the millions. Then, if attacked, join the war and pretend that it couldn't have been won without you and that you're so selfless for coming to their aid. Ensure that you become a superpower in the process and enjoy sixty years of fucking over the rest of the world!"

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Hell yeah man, the imperialist pigs of America totally fucked over Japan, Germany and the rest of Europe. How dare they.
      • Re:French? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by giorgiofr (887762) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @07:16AM (#24252801)

        What you want to do is refuse to help for several years even though your supposed friends are getting killed in the millions

        Damned if they don't

        Ensure that you become a superpower in the process and enjoy sixty years of fucking over the rest of the world!

        Damned if they do

      • Re:French? (Score:5, Informative)

        by Detritus (11846) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @07:27AM (#24252837) Homepage
        One of the reasons that many Americans were reluctant to get involved in World War II was their experience with World War I. After World War I, British propaganda was publicly exposed as a pack of lies, a cynical effort to mold public opinion at home and abroad, and to get America to enter the war. This destroyed the credibility of European news sources with many Americans, who felt that they had been duped by Allied propaganda.
        • by westlake (615356) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @01:49PM (#24255405)
          After World War I, British propaganda was publicly exposed as a pack of lies
          .

          The German occupation of Belgium set the pattern for what was to come. The Rape of Belgium: The Untold Story of World War 1 [amazon.com]

          The Zimmermann Telegram [wikipedia.org] was authentic:

          January 16, 1917

          On the first of February, we intend to begin unrestricted submarine warfare. In spite of this, it is our intention to endeavor to keep the United States of America neutral.

          In the event of this not succeeding, we propose an alliance on the following basis with Mexico: That we shall make war together and make peace together. We shall give generous financial support, and an understanding on our part that Mexico is to reconquer the lost territory in New Mexico, Texas, and Arizona. The details of settlement are left to you.

          You are instructed to inform the President [of Mexico] of the above in the greatest confidence as soon as it is certain that there will be an outbreak of war with the United States and suggest that the President, on his own initiative, invite Japan to immediate adherence with this plan; at the same time, offer to mediate between Japan and ourselves.

          Please call to the attention of the President that the ruthless employment of our submarines now offers the prospect of compelling England to make peace in a few months.

          There is much of interest here - not least the talk of an alliance with Japan.

          The historical background:

          April 22, 1915

          The German Embassy publishes this warning [wikipedia.org] which will appear below a New York Times marine add posting Lusitania's schedule:

          NOTICE!

          > TRAVELLERS intending to embark on the Atlantic voyage are reminded that a state of war exists between Germany and her allies and Great Britain and her allies; that the zone of war includes the waters adjacent to the British Isles; that, in accordance with formal notice given by the Imperial German Government, vessels flying the flag of Great Britain, or any of her allies, are liable to destruction in those waters and that travellers sailing in the war zone on the ships of Great Britain or her allies do so at their own risk.

          IMPERIAL GERMAN EMBASSY

          May 7, 1915 Luistania torpedoed without warning. 1200 die.
          August 1915 A Bavarian metal worker stamps out 500 or so back-dated commemorative medallions of the sinking -- which British propagandists will replicate in the hundreds of thousands for sale through British wartime charities.
          August 27, 1915 The Kaiser restricts attacks on large passenger vessels.
          September 18, 1915 Unrestricted submarine warfare ends

  • DRM for games (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MLCT (1148749) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @05:54AM (#24252543)
    It is a real shame that Game DRM hasn't gotten the same bad publicity and force for change movement against it that music has.

    mp3's have, despite the music companies best efforts, proven to be what buyers want - not "you can only listen to this track on 2 machines" DRM files. That has been enforced by media coverage and scrutiny - pointing out and badgering the music labels that people don't want DRM junk.

    This unfortunately hasn't happened with PC games - I guess they are less "mainstream" as far as media coverage is concerned.

    I used to buy a lot of games, and enjoy playing them - but the situation has deteriorated very badly in the last 4-5 years. Games not only have the usual "key & cd/dvd in the drive" requirements, but I have encountered a number, which I paid hard money for, that refuse to install if I have CloneCD installed - others that refuse to install if I have Daemon Tools installed - both programs that I legitimately use (and not for games, just to avoid having to take tens of cd's around with me).

    I bought HL2 - but haven't been able to play it for a couple years as I am behind a tight firewall and so can't register it. Consequently I haven't bought Ep2 or 3.

    The games companies have to wisen up - I used to by 3-6 games per year - I now haven't bought a single one in the last 2 years - I can't be bothered with games I paid hard cash for treating me like I am a criminal. I am not interested (nor should ever need to) apply the various circumvention cracks to get around the DRM just so I can play a game I have bought.

    The farce from Ubi-Soft only reinforces the situation - the same crackers who they decry as "destroying the games industry" are the ones they rip-off when they can't be bothered to write a patch (for a bug caused by all their neurotic DRM crap). Ubi-soft better hope there were no trojans in the crack - or they could find themselves on the end of a hefty lawsuit.
  • by Carbon016 (1129067) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @06:39AM (#24252671)
    Shame on you, Ubisoft! This kind of rampant IP theft is what is killing the PC game pirating industry!
  • by ghostis (165022) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @08:27AM (#24253105) Homepage

    They should send UBIsoft's ISP a DMCA takedown ;)

  • Pretty sure (Score:3, Insightful)

    by greymond (539980) on Saturday July 19, 2008 @12:42PM (#24254809) Homepage Journal

    that someone in the coding department is going to be fired. If you're going to steal/use someone elses code - COVER YOUR TRACKS FOOL!

I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated. -- Poul Anderson

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