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DRM Games

Free Copy of the Sims 2 Contains SecuROM 234

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the get-your-free-rootkits dept.
dotarray (1747900) writes By now, everybody should know that if something looks too good to be true, it probably is. Let's apply that to EA, shall we? The publisher is giving away copies of The Sims 2: Ultimate Collection, for free... and not mentioning that it includes the controversial SecuROM anti-piracy software. Nobody likes SecuROM.
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Free Copy of the Sims 2 Contains SecuROM

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  • by smitty_one_each (243267) * on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @05:02AM (#47555743) Homepage Journal
    SecuROM racket
    Despite how you stack it
    Like a beard on a girl
    They just want to hack it
    Burma Shave
  • Anti-piracy (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @05:08AM (#47555761)

    So, tell me, what do you mean with anti-piracy? Does it help against evil people in boats comandeering unarmed trade ships? So then must be something good.

    Or have you meant Digital Restrictions Management?

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @07:27AM (#47556077)

      I don't need a boat analogy. I need a car analogy.

  • by Anarchduke (1551707) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @05:13AM (#47555773)
    to a pirated version of this free software? I only ask becuase the pirated version wont have securom and will work better.
  • So what? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Racemaniac (1099281) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @05:15AM (#47555783)

    Is there any convention about mentioning anywhere which protection softwares your software is using??
    i get it that some people don't like securom, but is it any surprise that even free versions contain it because the probably couldn't be bothered to remove it before making it free?

    • Re:So what? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by gstoddart (321705) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @07:42AM (#47556105) Homepage

      You know, after the Sony rootkit issue, I do kind of expect vendors to be up front about this.

      Because, "hey, here's our software, oh, it might wreck your computer" is kind of a big deal.

      These companies feel entitled to install all sorts of crap on your machine. But, this being EA, it's already crap.

      They really should be required to tell you the extra crap they're installing, because it has the potential to really fsck up your computer.

    • by Khyber (864651)

      "Is there any convention about mentioning anywhere which protection softwares your software is using??"

      Well, one of my settlement agreement terms with EA was that they're supposed to inform every consumer upfront about SecuROM.

      If they're not doing that, they're in breach of our settlement agreement and I'm going to fucking end them in court.

  • Anybody know? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @05:16AM (#47555785) Journal
    Given that this is EA we are talking about, I can definitely believe that they'd somehow manage to be paranoid about 'piracy' of a game they are giving away. However, since it's also an older game(pre "Origin" store/client/pox-on-humanity and originally distributed largely on retail disks) and being given away it would be unsurprising if as little effort as possible was put into modifications for the new distribution.

    Does anybody know how deeply baked-in SecuROM has to be? Would the developer/publisher have a 'clean' version that is then put through some sort of SecuROM conversion step, or would you have to go further back, and deeper, into the development process to cleanly rip it out?

    I'm baffled at why including it would be worth much (especially if the license agreement involves any sort of volume-based payment, which would likely wipe out any minor benefits in audience tracking); but if it is sufficiently difficult to rip out then it would be understandable why EA wouldn't bother doing so(aside from just being evil).
    • by X0563511 (793323)

      AFAIK it's a wrapper. It loads itself in RAM, decrypts the actual game binary, and runs it's code. I think there are hooks available for use, as well (think "level 25 boss has infinite health if integrity check fails")

    • Would the developer/publisher have a 'clean' version that is then put through some sort of SecuROM conversion step, or would you have to go further back, and deeper, into the development process to cleanly rip it out?

      It's enough of a pain in the ass that it's not worth doing another build without SecuROM, especially since they'd also need to do another QA cycle to make sure they didn't break it for paid customers. It's far easier to just distribute the last version as-is and generating extra keys to hand o

  • Who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ildon (413912) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @05:17AM (#47555787)

    It's free. If you don't like SecuROM, don't install the game. If someone hates SecuROM so much, they probably hate Origin even more, so this seems kind of moot.

    • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @06:05AM (#47555893)

      No kidding. And sims 2 has ALWAYS had SecuROM in it. They just didn't feel like taking the time to patch it out. While I'm a firm believer that DRM is a waste of time and money on the game company's part, there's no massive conspiracy here. They used SecuROM when they released Sims 2 (it was released in 2004, they used SecuROM a lot with games then) and they haven't bothered to redo it because, well, it is old and they just don't wanna spend the time.

      Fair enough, particularly for free.

      Plus the nerd rage over it is really overblown. Turns out when there's a problem with something, sometimes companies listen and fix things. So last SecuROM game I played was Battlefield Bad Company 2. It was not problematic at all in my experience. You had to activate it one time online and it then ran without checks or ever going online again. You got a certain number of activations, 5 or 10 I think, but not only could you deactivate it, with a tool or automatically during uninstall, but they would replenish automatically over time. So unless you were doing a ton of reinstalls and not deactivating it was really unlikely you'd have an issue.

      Silly to include DRM in my opinion, particularly for a game mostly played online, but not at all onerous on the user.

      People seriously need to chill about this shit. Support DRM free games when there's a version available (GOG is a good site, please not Steam is not DRM free, Steamworks is DRM) but don't rage and whine if there's DRM and the DRM isn't a problem. Yes it is silly and a waste of money, but don't act like it is some massive issue if it is not.

      If a game has some "always on" DRM bullshit that shuts it off if the connection goes down? Ya that's a reason to get mad and not buy it. If it has a DRM that wants to activate once and then fucks off? Oh get over it, you probably have to get online ones to patch the thing anyhow. Just jump through the hoop and go on about your business.

      • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by KingOfBLASH (620432) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @06:40AM (#47555971) Journal

        YES!

        There is no right to a game designed the way you would want to design it. Your right is to vote with your wallets. If the second companies instituted DRM everyone stopped buying their products, then companies would not see DRM as a valid business model.

        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          I don't think anyone is arguing they have a right to DRM free games, just complaining loudly to EA about their product. Constructive criticism you might call it.

        • by Drethon (1445051)
          How do you vote with your wallet on a free game?
        • by ultranova (717540)

          There is no right to a game designed the way you would want to design it. Your right is to vote with your wallets. If the second companies instituted DRM everyone stopped buying their products, then companies would not see DRM as a valid business model.

          The question is, do you have an obligation to follow a corrupt law enacted solely to protect corporate interests?

          Copyright law, along with the Prohibition and the War on Drugs, are interesting case studies about the limits of law.

        • by Kjella (173770)

          There is no right to a game designed the way you would want to design it. Your right is to vote with your wallets.

          Until we decide that there is because we vote with our votes. For example the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act regulates how you can provide consumer warranties. If we wanted to ban certain DRM behaviors or even ban it entirely, we could do that. There's a difference between free market capitalism (equal opportunity for companies to provide competing products) and laissez-faire capitalism (companies can do anything and consumers will weed out bad behavior).

        • by devent (1627873)

          NO!

          The game designer have no right to take away my rights, and adding DRM is taking away my right of re-sale, fair-use and entering into public domain. Copyright is a compromise, we allow you to have a monopole on your software for a certain period of time so you can reclaim money lost on creating the software, inciting you to create software. But always under the premise that we have certain rights on the bought product. If you remove unilaterally my rights, why should I give you any rights back?

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        The difference between Steam and SecuROM is that when Steam fucks up, I can't play my game.

        When SecuROM 7 fucked up, I couldn't use my DVD burner.

        It's not as bad as Starforce, but that's not saying much.

    • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by GuB-42 (2483988) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @06:11AM (#47555909)

      It's free. If you don't like SecuROM, don't install the game.

      It would be a valid argument if there were a clear mention of SecuROM before you install the game.

      • by X0563511 (793323)

        There's probably some license thingy hidden away somewhere that mentions it in a vague fashion.

      • by Khyber (864651)

        The settlement terms of my lawsuit against EA included that they're supposed to inform UPFRONT of the SecuROM DRM.

        If they're no longer doing that, I've got standing to sue the fuck out of them again.

    • And if you really don't like DRM but want to play Sim City again, shell out 6 bucks and buy SimCity 2000 from GOG (http://www.gog.com/game/simcity_2000_special_edition). No DRM there...

    • People who care about controlling their computers care, as should all computer users care. This is another instance in a long line of great learning opportunities to distinguish between 'free as in price' and 'free as in freedom'—software proprietors get away with malware because how the software works is kept secret from its users. TFA tells us that Electronic Arts didn't tell prospective users SecuROM was a part of the gratis Sims 2 install, probably because EA knew users wouldn't install Sims 2 if

  • by jones_supa (887896)

    Other websites: Celebrating the free release of a classic game.

    Slashdot: Angry DRM rant.

  • Look, you can all argue over SecureROM, but I downloaded my free Sims 2 and I of course, am going to do what everyone else who isn't bitching is doing, Nude patches.

    https://www.google.com/#q=sims... [google.com]

    There's a google link to get you all started. First 2 links they want you to pay, screw that.

  • Lets be real here, the only reason they're releasing this for free is because The Sims 4 is coming out in a few months. With EA, there's always another motive.

    Someone should write a limerick that highlights all the good game companies EA has killed or corporatized, it wouldn't be hard but it'd sure be lengthy. Oh how I miss the old Maxis.

    • 4chan's video games board has a growing image titled "Victims of EA" that's been circulating for quite a while. Off the top of my head:

      Bullfrog (Dungeon Keeper)
      Origin Systems
      Westwood (C&C)
      Visceral Games (Dead Space)
      Bioware
      Maxis
      DICE (Battlefield)

      There were more, I just don't remember them all.

  • by ledow (319597)

    In this day and age, I don't really care.

    I prefer Steam because, generally, programs don't put more DRM on than the default Steam stuff (which is non-intrusive, as far as I'm concerned).

    Origin, I can't stand the poorly-designed program that once downloaded something like 40Gb and took nearly a day to install one game, because every update was applied sequentially and every update updated every file, sometimes 9Gb per update.

    But the end-point DRM on the game? You either care what that is and Google it, or

  • I have a VMs that runs windows xp and 98. They is specifically for old games that won't work on newer operating systems or have stuff like tages or securom. VMware player supports 3d passthrough so on a modern system those older games play perfectly without any frame drop.

    • by Hohlraum (135212)

      I have a VMs that runs windows xp and 98. They is specifically for old games that won't work on newer operating systems or have stuff like tages or securom. VMware player supports 3d passthrough so on a modern system those older games play perfectly without any frame drop.

      Jesus... they run. They are. Coffee hasn't kicked in yet :/

      • Indeed it hasn't, because the correct corrections would have been to write "I have VMs that run..." and to capitalize Windows since it's a proper noun.

  • by idontgno (624372) on Tuesday July 29, 2014 @12:50PM (#47558623) Journal
    Homer Simpson has agreed to download this free software for Bart's birthday

    Electronic Arts: Take this software, but beware it carries a terrible DRM!

    Homer: Ooh, that's bad.

    Shopkeeper: But it comes with a free frogurt!

    Homer: That's good.

    Shopkeeper: The frogurt is also cursed.

    Homer: That's bad.

    Shopkeeper: But you get your choice of toppings.

    Homer: That's good!

    Shopkeeper: The toppings contain potassium benzoate.

    [Homer looks puzzled]

    Shopkeeper: ...That's bad.

    Homer: Can I go now?

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