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First Person Shooters (Games)

Steam Registration Servers Overloaded 768

duckle writes "The Inquirer reports that "The World has come crashing down around Half-Life 2 players today, as Steam's authentication servers in Europe have died.", and deemzzzz_k writes "It looks like even Valve wasn't quite prepared for Half Life 2's popularity. HL2 requires registration to unlock the game and although the Valve/Steam homepage claims that it fixed registration issues the servers are still overloaded. Registration is "delayed" and temporarily unlocking the game takes 20-30 minutes over a 1.5MB DSL line." This seems to primarily be an issue for folks who bought the game from a store; I purchased the game via Steam and was playing at 12:15 am PST on launch day.
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Steam Registration Servers Overloaded

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  • I guess (Score:5, Funny)

    by Locdonan ( 804414 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:20PM (#10845538) Homepage Journal
    Steam ran out of steam.

    Thanks, I'll be here all week.
  • by kngthdn ( 820601 ) * on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:20PM (#10845541) Homepage
    ...we can Slashdot them, too!
  • Gotta stop piracy! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sudnshok ( 136477 ) * on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:20PM (#10845543)
    I'm glad when companies inconvenience their paying customers like this. Because, afterall, I'm sure the mandatory registration will prevent piracy. I just searched and see an activation patch already on IRC.
    • by Chaswell ( 222452 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:24PM (#10845576)
      You are correct, they have now made it EASIER to steal and play than to pay and wait, and wait, and maybe register, eventually.

      • by hacknslashdot ( 769458 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:35PM (#10845723)
        This is exactly what game companies keep failing to understand. The harder you make a game to use because of "copy protection", the more attractive the cracked alternative is.
        If I buy a game, just let me play the damn thing.
        • by the_mad_poster ( 640772 ) * <> on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:51PM (#10845961) Homepage Journal

          The solution, of course, is to stop buying the fucking games. Although, wisely spending money by picking and choosing responsible vendors has never been a concept slashbots got while they sat around bitching about this sort of thing. Every time some idiot company like Valve releases some half cocked POS activation scheme, write them a letter far more polite and professional than this post explaining exactly why you're not going to buy it.

          If I wanted to pay people to hurt me I'd give the crackhead down on the corner fifty cents to kick me in the nuts. I don't need to pay $50 so I can sit around screwing with a stupid activation code for eight hours while I chomp aspirin to keep from dying of a heart attack as my blood pressure blows through the goddamn roof.

          • by Neurowiz ( 18899 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @05:04PM (#10846100)
            I'd pay $.50 to watch - that would be hilarious!

            Maybe I could start a new business, "Masochist's Fulfillment Corp."

            1. Kick guy in nuts
            2. ...
            3. Profit!
        • by Corporal Dan ( 103359 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @05:15PM (#10846234)
          If by hard to use, you mean click a button and play, then I don't know what you would consider easy.

          I understand it took a while to validate the thing, but after spending hours downloading it on Monday, fifteen extra minutes to verify didn't matter much--I was up and playing at 3:15 EST...
          • There's a reason why I'm posting here instead of playing that game.

            My own experiences were more like:

            Insert disc1. wait...3 minutes
            Insert disc2. wait...3 minutes
            Insert disc3. wait...3 minutes
            Insert disc4. wait...3 minutes
            Insert disc5. wait...3 minutes

            Fill in blanks for steam. wait... 5 minutes.

            "Unable to find Master AuthenticationServer"


            "Connection Reset by Peer."

            Swear. Retry.

            [repeat any of 5 random error messages]

            Swear. Repeat.

            Email to Sierra Tech support. Email bounces.
            OK. Try VUG
          • "I understand it took a while to validate the thing, but after spending hours downloading it on Monday, fifteen extra minutes to verify didn't matter much--I was up and playing at 3:15 EST..."

            Yeah, but 15 hours later, when everyone was getting home from work or school and trying it out, things went to hell. I had the Steam-based version and had no problem unlocking and playing it at 4 am. But after work, the Steam authentication servers were too overloaded to let me login in, even though the game was al

    • How perfect: []
    • by TheAntiCrust ( 620345 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:55PM (#10846002)
      Grrr... No one on slashdot seems to realize that one of the primary points of steam is NOT to stop piracy. The idea of being able to verify all the files on someone's computer adresses the much larger issue of CHEATING. Cheating in multiplayer games has been a huge issue with Half-Life and I think more than anything else valve wanted to make sure all the game files are un-edited to prevent cheatng by hacking the game.
      • by eht ( 8912 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @05:03PM (#10846092)
        But what about single player? which also requires steam to play?

        A lot of people still don't play multi player games, they buy the game for the single player aspect of it.
      • by Wavicle ( 181176 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @05:06PM (#10846131)
        So if the larger issue is cheating, why not allow people to play single player without steam and only require steam for multiplayer?

        Or is valved frightened that people are going to cheat at single player and finish the game??

        Steam is at least as much about piracy as cheating. As a result Valve has clearly stated that they are willing to inconvenience a lot of their customers so that a few will buy instead of pirate. I'm glad my midterms preclude me from installing HL2 until next week.
      • by dougmc ( 70836 )

        No one on slashdot seems to realize that one of the primary points of steam is NOT to stop piracy.

        I'm sure there's somebody on /. who feels this way. Like you, perhaps. So much for `no one' ...

        I'm quite sure that the *requirement* of Steam activation to even play HL2 single player is all about the prevention of piracy. Who cares if you cheat if you're playing a single player game?

        I imagine they also want Steam on everybody's hard drives, popping up ads and the like. It took me two hours to g

  • by FortKnox ( 169099 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:22PM (#10845557) Homepage Journal
    (For the record, I got a store-bought version).

    At 7PM EST, I tried installing, setting up a steam account and unlocking the game with my CD Key. The whole process took about 3 hours.

    The steam registration mostly returned back cause it couldn't even hit the master authentication server most of the night. Unlocking the game took between 45-60 minutes (on a fast cablemodem line).

    Wasn't this expected though? Its like when a MMORPG releases and they can't handle the load. Do they just expect a few hundred people to get the (arguably) most anticipated game of the year on its opening day and the rest to just trickle in until Christmas??
    • It took me over three hours, as well. About an hour into the horrifying process, I was thinking that if I was a criminal, I would already be playing. In order to play, you have to have Valve's spyware program running on your system. You have to go through 4 separate EULAs. You have to sign yourself up on two different services. An internet connection is mandatory as you play the game. You must give out numerous personal details, put in a long password, and keep the disk in your computer while playing.
      • by aliens ( 90441 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:41PM (#10845823) Homepage Journal
        An internet connection is not required as you play. Once you signup and register you can have steam start in offline mode, unplug yourself from the wall and you're done.

        Just an FYI in case you're without internet some day.
      • by kormoc ( 122955 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:45PM (#10845863)
        A few things,

        First, there's no evidence (that I know of) supporting that steam is spyware, do you have any to support that claim?

        Second, Two services? I beleive you only have to sign up for steam.

        Third. It's listed on the box that a internet connection is a requirement to activate the game, you knew before hand that it was required, you could have not bought it if you disagreed with it.

        Fourth. Numerous personal details? you mean the email address?

        Fifth. Long password? Mine is 6 chars long, that's not long at all.

        Sixth. The cd does not need to be in the drive to play. You don't even need the cd to install it. Just type in the cdkey into steam and it will download it and install it.

        Seventh. Updates are not mandatory, right click on hl2 in steam, click on properitys, and change the automatic update to off.

        Eighth. On my computer it takes about 30 seconds to start from steam. Are you sure it's not a computer issue that it's taking 50 min to start the game?

        Ninth. Afaik, there are no cracked copys of hl2 on the web yet, so if you were a cruminal, you still wouldn't be playing.

        Tenth. Offline mode is enabled for the game when it is completely downloaded from online or installed. Just start steam without a inet connection enabled and it will start in offline mode and you can play away.

        I think your only valid complaint is that their servers are overloaded, which is a valid complaint, but don't make it worst then it is.
      • Crazy EULA (Score:3, Interesting)

        There was part of the agreement near the end where you had to promise that you would not give the game to a terrorist or any national from a country that supports terrorists.

        Dang, and that was always my favorite side in CS.
        Seriously though, did anyone else think that was odd?
      • FUD FUD FUD (Score:3, Interesting)

        I was thinking that if I was a criminal, I would already be playing.

        One of your few valid criticisms...

        In order to play, you have to have Valve's spyware program running on your system.

        You must have a different concept of "spyware" than I do. Can you explain how exactly Steam is spyware? They tell you what it reports to Valve. You choose to install it (you don't have to buy HL2). It is simple to uninstall it. Choice, valid information, and easy uninstallation are 3 things not found in real spyware.

    • I sure didn't expect it to take this long. The real issue is does forcing this HUGE extra effort onto their customers really worth it. I don't know about other people, but I personally have never spent 4 hours installing a game (started installing at 4pm, didn't start playing until 8pm). I'm not a hardcore gamer. Yet, I find it hard to believe that most Half-Life 2 buyers had "expected" a delay like this.
      • " The real issue is does forcing this HUGE extra effort onto their customers really worth it."

        The answer lies in the fact that, despite doing what they did, they are enjoying record-breaking sales.

        Do you think you can alter somone's behavior by throwing piles of money at them?
      • I'm not a hardcore gamer

        Did you, or did you not, purchase Half-Life the first day it was on sale? Mmkay, then. If you want less of an effort *wait a week*.

        For the record, three (3) separate installs took place on opening day among various computers in the possession of myself an my roommates. No hitches, nothing took more than 40 minutes... reasonable, for a game that comes on five (5) CDs.

        Bottom line? Valve's products just earned >$150 from people in my house, and we 're all very happy with our
  • by LWATCDR ( 28044 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:23PM (#10845559) Homepage Journal
    So if you paid for the game at the store you may or may not get to play it for a while. This is so going to suck for valve. the fall out is going to be huge.
    • You might say that the Fallout from the Half-Life 2 launch might cast a pall similar to a Nuclear Winter on future releases from the company?
    • Yup. Until I want to play CounterStrike and the file-auth stuff in Steam starts banning cheaters. Then I'll be happy it's here.

      I installed from DVD in about 35 minutes last night. Including a failed Steam auth, after which it said "oops, sorry, can't register now, I'll try back later" and let me play anyway. This really isn't a big deal.
  • No problems here (Score:2, Informative)

    by elh_inny ( 557966 )
    I'm in Poland. I've had no problems in the morning, my friend has just unlock his copy.
  • Most of that unlocking time is the decryption and hard disk activity, not Steam network activity.
    • by Lukey Boy ( 16717 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:26PM (#10845613) Homepage
      Bullshit on that one. It took my system 10 minutes to unlock - after 2.5 hours of attempting to contact the Steam servers. If it can't get the private key for the data, it can't really decrypt it.

      Nothing like paying for a single player game months in advance and then not being able to play it. Valve has managed to delay the game even after the release!
    • by Ignignot ( 782335 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:30PM (#10845663) Journal
      Most of that unlocking time is the decryption and hard disk activity, not Steam network activity.

      That is true, however it remains Valve's fault. The cd's basically just copy over the exact same files as in the preload that you could get from Steam... which means that when you stick the cd's in your drive you have to do two install processes, at least. First you have to disc swap install the cds (5) which takes awhile. Then you have to register for Steam. Then you have to wait while it decrypts everything, on top of unpacking the entire game just like a regular install does in a single step. The decryption and adding extra steps to the install process are quite a pain in the ass, let me tell you. It took me over an hour to get the game running, and I consider myself lucky because the only problems I had were closed ports, which I quickly fixed. Some of these other stories I've heard, especially with Steam registration, would absolutely enrage me if it had happened to me. We payed for this game, we expect it to at least PLAY!
  • The whole idea of Steam to begin with is just utter shit. I have a Powerbook so I don't play very much Half-Life, but it simply amazes me what hardcore gamers are willing to put up with from Valve. There are lots of perfectly good other games; why the HELL should Valve even be allowed to do this? If it's M game, I should be able to play it, even if I don't have an internet connection. I don't doubt people who pirate the game are going to figure out ways around the authentication mechanism, and in the mea
    • by eidolons ( 708050 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:53PM (#10845978) Homepage
      I know another Slashdot discussion of Steam will lead to more dissing of Steam, much of it justified, but think about it this way. Steam is a great example of how a product can be distributed and not need the dreaded middle-man. The dreaded middle-man is the distributor. Vivendi. Next time around, maybe the won't even have a mega-corp involved, maybe they'll release it directly to consumers.

      This is what needs to happen in the Music industry. Cut out the middle-man, cut out the need for the RIAA, etc.

      By the way, people preloading HL2 didn't have a problem playing it, only those who bought retail (Vivendi's domain) requiring activation.

      The game, by the way, is amazing.

      • "Sure - it shoves a rod up your ass, but it sure beats dealing with Vivendi."

        In this instance I'm sick of people picking sides, as if they had to absolve either Vivendi or Valve of all wrongdoing. I'm sorry, but both companies are buttholes for playing this middle-man game that in the end only winds up screwing the consumer. Buy from Vivendi: Valve gets less cash and you have to unlock the CD. Buy from Valve: they screw the giant Vivendi but you have to download over a gig of data and the servers are inund
  • by attaboy ( 689931 ) * on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:25PM (#10845591)
    I ordered online through Steam last night and it took about 30 minutes to unlock. I had already pre-downloaded.

    On a slightly unrelated note: what's with the mid-game/mid-level load times? Are they just slow for me, or does anyone else feel like they may as well be downloading the game textures from Steam as you play?
  • Big deal. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by op51n ( 544058 )
    I'd love to see people stop whining about this. I bought it, it arrived today and after install was unlocked and ready to go within 20 minutes (on dialip). I saw someone say on a forum the other day 'in the time it takes, go for a walk or something'. I mean honestly, is it really such a big deal? Do you really need to sue Valve?
    Even the audio bug people are getting - it happens. No game can be perfect out of the gate. Give it a couple of days, and see if they sort it or a fix is found, but it's fucking poin
  • by teiresias ( 101481 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:25PM (#10845599)
    I think this problem underscores the frailty of requiring a product to be unlocked over the Internet. While it's one way of ensuring digital rights management, Valve could certainly have put in a backup system (a la similar to Microsofts 1-800 registration number).
  • Outage was yesterday (Score:3, Informative)

    by FromWithin ( 627720 ) <stuff AT fromwithin DOT com> on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:26PM (#10845606) Homepage
    I'm in the UK. I got everything installed and running in about half an hour. I got the Steam account setup, but when it couldn't connect to the server, it told me it was busy but I could still play the game anyway. It connected and finished the process during the night after I'd already played the game for about 5 hours. It's a brilliant game, and I think they've done really well with Steam considering the size of the load they have taken. I have no complaints.
  • OK, HL2 was in development for how long? And now some unfortunate folks in europe can't play their LEGALLY PURCHASED game because of poor planning and implementation of steam (I thought steam was a bad idea from the beginning, but that's not the point here).

    In addition, I'm one of the hordes of beta testers for World of Warcraft, with less than two weeks until the game launches, there is lag in some areas that nearly makes the game unplayable

    What are game designers thinking when they plan development tim

    • Don't jump to conclusions, the game is still in beta and they're testing things. Also there are 500,000 beta testers and (hopefully) less servers than for retail. Ordinn, a guy from Blizzard posted this on their boards:

      Hi all, A number of inquiries have come in about the lag issues on some of the servers, so we want to take some time to provide more in-depth information for you. Some of you might be surprised to learn that the lag you're experiencing is an expected and necessary part of the open bet

  • Be grateful... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by CheetahMk2 ( 832017 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:26PM (#10845611)
    Most of you are lucky you never had to recover a password off of the Steam network. A friend of mine purchased the game online, and since then he uninstalled CS to focus on his studies. Now he can't recover his password!

    If he uses the 'lost password' procedure in Steam he gets an Operation Incomplete error, and so far he hasn't managed to get a single human person to assist him at Steampowered. I was never a big fan of activation, but this cinches it.
  • Took about an hour to install off the DVD and activate via Steam. Its mainly a lot of HD thrasing to decrypt the datafiles, and a little network to fetch the executeable from Steam.
  • Make sure you shake all the bugs out by then...OK guys?
  • HL2 Projections (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Silwenae ( 514138 ) * on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:27PM (#10845631) Homepage
    "It looks like even Valve wasn't quite prepared for Half Life 2's popularity."

    I have a hard time believing Valve underestimated demand - they knew how many pre-orders they had from Steam, and they knew how many boxes shipped to all of the retailers. Retailers regularily share projections of what sales will be by week (especially since they have to know how much product to order). They had models to follow, and NPD and others track sales weekly, so they probably knew at a minimum they would do the same, if not better, than Doom3 in August.

    The fact of the matter is, their system can't handle the load, plain and simple.
  • Not prepared?!? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hal2814 ( 725639 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:28PM (#10845638)
    "It looks like even Valve wasn't quite prepared for Half Life 2's popularity."

    Funny, they were more than prepared to take the money from customers before checking to see if they had enough servers to handle the load. When their distributor was filling orders, they could've come up with a rough estimate of what they expected to sell and made sure they had enough servers. Somebody just didn't do their homework.
  • I purchased mine 9am CST USA and installed it a short while later. Took a good 20 minutes for it to unlock but is now 100% offline playable.

    Note: Retail copies require the CD in the drive to play. Boo.
  • by aardwolf204 ( 630780 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:29PM (#10845647)
    I bought the game from a store yesterday. It only took 20 minutes to install off the 5 CDs, you would think they could make it on DVD. And whats with not giving us jewl cases for a $55 game? Cheap paper sleves are for Drivers, not AAA title games.

    Where was I? Before it would let me play it forced me to create a steam account, something I've boycotted since Counter Strike 1.3 and has a lot to do with why I stopped playing CS. Never-the-less I created an account and waited as it tried to unlock my game. It told me that it was unable to register me, but it would let me know as soon as it was able to. I guess at this point I was "in line to register". Then it actually allowed me to play! I tried it again after disabling my network connection and it told me that it could not verify my CD key and that I could only play while I was online. I'm kinda pissed about that and hope they get that fixed soon. If the cable goes out and I cant play HL2 I'm going to be very very bored, I might even have to go outside

    From my first 20 minutes playing reaction I've got to say this game is so much more open-ended then Doom3, and though I'm a huge id fan I've got to hand it to valve, this looks like its going to be just as fun to play as HL1. I could spend an hour just throwing television sets out windows at the police on the ground.

  • Precedent (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Sfd ( 827121 )
    From now on companies will think this is a ok to do and in the future all singleplayer offline games will require this yey im so happy.
  • The unlocking time has nothing to do with the Steam servers from what I can tell, and everything to do with your PC. The hard drive on my system and the CPU were both doing non stop 100% usage practically for the 25 minutes I had to wait. So, I wouldn't be so quick to blame it on Steam's "overloadedness" (probably not even a real word).
  • by hkmwbz ( 531650 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:33PM (#10845705) Journal
    From the moment I heard that even single player would require online activation, I knew it would be a punch in the face of those who actually pay for the game. There are many reasons why this could lead to problems, such as proxies/firewalls, and what happens in many years when you want to take a trip down memory lane? Will the activation servers still be up then?

    And now it is even clearer that this is nothing but an insult to those who actually buy games instead of pirating them. Who are inconvenienced by this? Certainly not pirates. They download a cracked version anyway. This is apparently supposed to prevent piracy, but it obviously fails miserably!

    No, the real losers here, again, are customers who actually paid for the game. They are the ones who need to connect to the Internet to activate the game. They are the ones who have been stuck all day, unable to activate the game, even for single player!

    I held off buying Half-Life 2 exactly because of this online activation nonsense, and I was right in doing so. I hope to play the game, but I am very hesitant to give my money to a company like Valve, a company which lies to and deceives its customers, and adds hurdles that do nothing but inconvenience them, while pirates are completely unaffected.

    If I sound like a troll, it's because I am extremely disappointed, and I am angry at Valve for being so stupid as to think that they can prevent piracy by forcing their customers to jump through hoops. I am angry because this is the way the industry is headed, and I don't like it.

    Now games have started trying to decide for you which software to have installed (Doom 3 vs. various CD image programs), and they want you to activate it online, even for single-player... This is how the PC gaming industry will ultimately kill itself. By basically punching its customers in the face, while pirates remain unaffected.

  • hm (Score:3, Funny)

    by mogrify ( 828588 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:38PM (#10845778) Homepage
    I heard their brand new fiber line [] was cut by a falling minivan full of screaming children.
  • Nice going, Valve (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SpecBear ( 769433 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:38PM (#10845779)
    I was wary about Half Life 2's mandatory activation before this. My initial concern was what would happen if I want to load this game up again five years from now to play it again on a new PC? Will Valve be available to activate it? Apparently I was being too optimistic. Now I have to worry about whether I'll be able to activate it on the day that I buy it.

    The whole thing struck me as very silly. If I'm playing online, then I don't have a problem with providing them a CD-key to connect to their server. But if I'm offline, why the hell should I have to register with them? I recently moved and my DSL isn't active yet, so I can't play this game. That's just silly.

    My (horribly biased) suggestion: Valve should admit they screwed up, and release a patch that activated the game usnig a regular old CD key. If this doesn't get straightened out soon, they may be hearing the phrase "class action" a lot.
  • Fucking Retarded (Score:3, Insightful)

    by slaker ( 53818 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:38PM (#10845780)
    I really, REALLY don't care about CS:Source or any of the weeny online games that have been made with Half-Life, but I remember playing and enjoying the STORY of the first version.

    And I can break out my install CD, install it and play it whenever I'd like, no internet required. Same thing with the game I play most often, Master of Magic, which is so old I don't even think there are any remaining fan pages online.

    I'd like to play Halflife 2, but as long as it's associated with all that online registration and updating bullshit there's no way I'm going to bother with it. Basically, I want to buy a game and own it, not buy a game and install it and let it download 2GB of crap I don't want or need... but only as long as Valve keeps the serial validation servers running.
  • by the_mad_poster ( 640772 ) * <> on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:45PM (#10845868) Homepage Journal

    And every geek on here that screams and moans and whines about Microsoft activation ran out and bought the damn game the minute it was on the shelf, I'm sure.

    Slashdotters: Walking the Walk and Mumbling the Talk since 1997.

  • by chade01 ( 778465 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:49PM (#10845929)
    Some people have alluded to this already, but this just goes to show that "Digital Rights Management" present more of a violation of digital rights than a management system.

    When I pay for a game, I should have access to play the game from the moment I own it until the end of time. The ability to continue playing the game should not rest in the hands of the company from which I purchased it.

    Take for example, the current EFF [] battle against Blizzard Entertainment []. If Blizzard decides to discontinue in the future, should legitimate paying customers be the ones who suffer? After all, they paid for a game with the expectation that Internet gameplay was one of the many features available to increase replay value. Thus, if they want to take matters into their own hands and create custom servers to allow continued online play, that should be their right.

    The same goes for Steam. After all, when Half-Life first was released, they used [] to host their online gameplay. I cannot count the number of times that I was unable to play (despite having a legitimate CD-Key) because either the Master CD-Key server was down, unreachable, lagged, or just malfunctioning. Now they've moved to Steam and everyone who has the original Half-Life game finds their CD has been rendered obsolete!

    For this reason, users should have the right to do more than simply "make a backup copy". They should have the right to crack, break, and generally f*** up copy protection. They should have the right to run private servers for online play. Bottom line -- they should have the right to decide whether or not they can continue normal use of a program which they purchased fair and square. After the money changes hands, the game belongs to me -- not the company. So get your grubby hands off, you greedy bastards.
  • by ValuJet ( 587148 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @04:49PM (#10845934)
    I purchased HL2 through steam and had no such problems. I probably would not have purchased the game if it wasn't for the ability to buy it online over the internet. I loved not having to wait in line at a store or install it from discs.

    I understand that people who purchased the game via the brick and mortar stores kinda got the raw end of the deal, but I was very satisfied with the way buying this game worked.

  • by Thaelon ( 250687 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @07:37PM (#10847987)
    • Install the game from 12x DVD-ROM drive (DVD edition of the game): 5 minutes.
    • Activate/Unlock/Enable the game I bought: 45 minutes. (I'm wtf'ing at this point already.)
    • Start the game off a SCSI 3 RAID 0 Array of (4) Atlas 10K IIIs on a system with 768MB of RAM: 2 minutes (More wtf'ing ensues.)
    • Have the game crash and hardlock a dual CPU computer: 45 seconds to fully lock up & require a reboot.
    • Reboot: 2 minutes
    • Attempt to start the game and have steam tell me, "Sorry this game is unavailable right now, please try again later.": (Extremely irate WTF'ing ensues!) I bought the fucking game, I installed the fucking game, why can't I PLAY THE FUCKING GAME!?!
    • Attempt to start the game again, (watching task manager): hl2.exe appears after 5 seconds, then vanishes.
    • Attempt to start the game again, (watching task manager): hl2.exe appears after 5 seconds, then vanishes.
    • Attempt to start the game again, (watching task manager): Game starts, requires 2 minutes. (head shaking ensues)
    55 minutes after I start installing the game, I get to play it.
    To Valve: Steam is an atrocity, I just bought the collector's edition and I'll probably crack the game anyway so I can run it without the atrocity that is steam and without the disc. (The disc is required by the way, at least to start the game if you installed from a DVD).
  • by Zhe Mappel ( 607548 ) on Wednesday November 17, 2004 @08:44PM (#10848705)
    ...was when the installer bombed out on Disc 4 with an error message.

    A few minutes Googling the newsgroups came up with an answer: Valve had stupidly failed to test the installer with the option to install CS turned off. Back to square one, and another twenty minutes of feeding CDs...

    Busy lines to get Steam content? Not pleasant, but understandable. Shipping your installer in this state, after five years of development? Valve should apologize.

    The game rocks, but nobody should have to jump through 90 minutes of hoops after paying $50.

MESSAGE ACKNOWLEDGED -- The Pershing II missiles have been launched.