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Games Entertainment

Downloading Games Not Just For Pirates 91

1up is running a piece entitled Digital Delivery, which looks at alternate distribution models for new titles in the here-and-now of fast download speeds. They cover outfits like Steam and GameTap, in addition to the ever popular Xbox Live. From the article: "Steam's birth came with some controversy, though. It was only in late 2004 that this happened, but if you missed it, a brief explanation might be in order. When Valve decided to embrace digital distribution, they didn't do it in half measures. The retail version of the game that shipped to stores was more like a formality to appease Vivendi Universal Games, Valve's megalithic publisher: for $50, gamers got a box containing five discs inside a sleeve. If players wanted a manual, they had to refer to the PDF version on the disc, and the irritation at this was nothing compared to the real bombshell."
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Downloading Games Not Just For Pirates

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  • by spyrochaete ( 707033 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:36PM (#14609602) Homepage Journal
    Guild Wars [guildwars.com] optionally distributes its client over the web and on BT. When you launch the client you can enter a prepackaged product key or click a button to purchase one in a web browser. This is a great solution for all parties! Players don't have to repurchase the game due to broken media, and Anet prevents abuse since "pirated" copies cannot be played without a purchased serial. It's still recommended, however, to download the client from a trusted source.

    • Except at my house, where my internet provider rate limits both BitTorrent traffic and cumulative traffic. BitTorrent is rate-limited network-wide, and total traffic is limited on a per-port basis, where they start dropping 1/x packets, where x is approaching 1 until they stick you where they want you.

      This sucks, as my wife plays WoW, and everytime they release an update, she has to either wait for the in-game bit-torrent-esque thing to download it at literally 3KB/sec, or go wait in line at file planet fo
      • Why don't you move to a different ISP?
        • by Anonymous Coward
          He probably lives in the USA, where so-called "free market capitalism" has had the glorious success of causing high-speed internet access in many places to be controlled by a single local monopoly.

          Funny how socialist Europe and Korea do so much better at providing a competetive communications marketplace where a variety of companies compete on quality, price, and service, while the supposed capital of the world economy languishes in the 1990s.
    • Ditto on the GW comment. I woke up one morning and decided to take the plunge, bought the game. I kid you not, I was playing in less than 10 minutes! The game only downloads what is needed as it is needed, so it didn't have to download N gigabytes of content, just enough to load character creation screen. Then, I assume, while I was making my character it loaded the pre-searing levels.

      Sure, it's a mild annoyance when you have to download a new area the first time you visit it, but it's very quick.
    • Kind of reminds me of Linux version of Neverwinter Nights - the game comes with "aluminum-reinforced Windoze brand coasters" which, upon closer inspection, have some mysterious .cab files and shit like that that Linux tools have very little clue about - but if you want to play the Linux version, you just download a gigantic tarball, uncompress, and enter the serial number from the back of the manual.

  • Fine. As long as I can burn an installable copy onto DVD-R for backup purposes. If not, I'll stick with the Myth or Class version.

    //arrrrrr
    • I think you can usually burn a backup of the install CDs that will install the game okay. It's just that they won't work when they do that damn CD check on launch. Maybe things have changed in the few years since I stopped playing games, though...
      • That's the worst part about Steam, whether you bought the CD's or you bought it through Steam, is that the game won't launch unless it gets verification through the Steam server first.

        So, what happens if Valve goes out of business tomorrow? All Steam apps are then rendered worthless, even single-player.
        • THEN you go download the pirate version.
        • More likely situation: What if you move into a student home that allows only HTTP traffic?

          Answer: You're fucked, Valve has officially stated they don't care about people whose connection doesn't allow Steam.
          • Use TotalRC www.totalrc.net to route the gaming traffic through http port 80 then.
            • Back when I was in such a home they had packet filters in place to prevent that. Other product activation schemes have phone hotlines for people without internet connection...
    • I like Steam's approach (I know, I'm a heathen). I just keep all my game data backed up on my file server.
    • I remember a long time ago I bought Mutant Storm 2 from Garage Games. Maybe a year (and, more importantly, a new computer) later, I was bored one day looking at various games and suddenly remembered I'd purchased that game so long ago. So I did a little research, found the site I'd bought it from, tried my usual login info and bam, there was my account page with a download link and my product key.

      Now, granted, this is only good so long as the website in question sticks around, but for something like this I
  • by Anonymous Coward
    "...and the irritation at this was nothing compared to the real bombshell."

    Which was?!? Leave it to Slashdot to end the summary with a cliffhanger like that. I guess I'll have to wait for the dupe to find out what happens next...
    • That's because as is typical of /., the article summary is cut and paste directly from the article itself. The paragraph in question occurs on page 3 of the article if you want to skip ahead to it.
      • If you don't know what they mean, then you obviously haven't used Steam. And I don't mean old-school enter-any-CD-key-cand-get-all-of-Valve's-games-for -free Steam. I mean new-school tough-to-pirate enter-CD-key crashes-during-updating-causing-you-to-have-to-rei nstall-7-CDs-worth-of-data Steam.
  • well, sure (Score:3, Funny)

    by syrinx ( 106469 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:40PM (#14609653) Homepage
    I would think that it's tough for pirates to download games... I can't imagine you'd be able to get much bandwidth out there on the high seas.
    • You'd think so, but you'd be surprised as to how crafty we are.
    • by Kesch ( 943326 )
      Yarr, us pirates have been hijacking shipments fromm Japan. Recently we got a nice satellite internet setup with gyro-balancing to keep her steady on stormy waters. BTW(By the waves), we also pirated the subsription. 'Tis no problem now to pirate all the games and peg leg fetish videos we want.
    • by vertinox ( 846076 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @04:15PM (#14610083)
      I would think that it's tough for pirates to download games... I can't imagine you'd be able to get much bandwidth out there on the high seas.

      Not when ye have a Galleon loaded with 20 cannon, 100 vicious men, and a cargo hold filled to the brim with ye backup tapes traveling at 5 knots due to a ragin carribean storm!

      Yar! Thar be ye bandwidth!
  • It's better..... but (Score:3, Interesting)

    by OctoberSky ( 888619 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:41PM (#14609673)
    It's better now than when Steam initally launched (IMHO) but it is still really lacking.

    After reinstalling Windows recently to start things fresh I put all the games I play back on, disk by disk while I browsed the web. That is, all but one game, Day of Defeat: Source. I forgot to back it up and dread having to go through all the bullshit Valve is going to make me go through to get it back.

    Honestly, if I had a disk I would probably be playing it again.
    • whenever a game update comes out steams servers will be flooded and may not let you connect. But steam won't let you run outdated versions, so you are stuck not being able to play anything while you wait for steam to finally do its thing.

      the only good thing i've found about steam is being able to install games onto other computers while away from home.
    • I did this recently (reinstalled my PC), and the 'bullshit' involved downloading the Steam installer from Valve and running it, and then logging on to my Steam account. I marked the games I wanted installed from my games list, and forgot about it for the rest of the day while it downloaded all the data. That was pretty much it.
    • Bullshit? Like what? The fact that you purchashed it is linked to your steamid, so there will be no BS invovled. Just redownload it, it won't make you purchase it. (I think)

      Just like HL2, CS:S and everything. No need to pay once it is linked to your account.
      • Yeah. The "bullshit" he's talking about consists of "clicking on the game" and "waiting." It's highly technical and complex.
        • Waiting each time he has to install to play a game he's already paid for.

          Yeah I see no problem with that. Every gamer has hours to waste redownloading everything they've already bought.

          I'd sure call that bullshit.
          • If you have broadband, it's faster than installing from CDs. It's certainly more convenient.

            Also, this is nowhere near the point, but most gamers have surprisingly large amounts of free time.
            • Just what are you smoking?

              There are a LOAD of disadvantages to steam, most really obvious and all well documented.

              1) If your internet connection is down, so is your game.
              2) If you're out of bandwidth for the month, you can't play your game.
              3) Bandwidth is not free.
              4) No internet connection is going to be faster than CD.
              5) If Blizzard go bankrupt or decide to start charging for the use of their servers you're basically at their mercy. It'll happen in the near future and the argument will be that people pay t
              • It's worth noting that Steam has nothing to do with Blizzard (your #5). Steam is brought to us by the good folks at Valve.

                I would also mention that while I'm sure there are people stuck with monthly metered bandwidth, the vast majority of people are unlimited in terms of total downloads/uploads. Many get hosed by their ISPs where they limit the bandwidth (speed) available to certain applications/ports but that's another topic entirely.

                I'm a Steam Hater from way back (and haven't played HL2 despite a
                • Yeah sorry for getting that wrong. Money sucking company X or money sucking company Y. Who cares. They all have one agenda: Make a buck, and oh if you have to provide a service of some sort to do it so be it.

                  Bandwidth however is a finite thing. It doesn't matter if you get it from company X or company Y either. (Well it may matter to your bank account but in the grand scheme that's your choice, provided you live somewhere where you can get unlimited bandwidth - not something you can assume is true for every
              • This is complete and utter bullshit. You have obviously never used steam, or if you have, certainly not long enough to experience any of the 'problems' you list.

                1. If its a multiplayer only/multiplayer component then yes. This is true of (almost) every other multiplayer game as well though.

                2. No, in most cases you would just have to pay extra usage fees or simply have your connection capped at around 56k speeds (I find though that its actually faster then what one could expect from a 56k service (eg you get
                • Counter arguments:

                  2. Many if not most ISPs gouge for extra usage

                  4. What you think everyone has gigabit or ADSL2? How many people do you know that exceed 20 or 30 gig a month? They're not the usual user either.

                  5. I'm not willing to install HL2/steam to find out, but if single player isn't already crippled how long before it is until it phones home and authenticates? How long till some company decides it's costing money so lets charge for this? If you can't see the agenda you're being obtuse on purpose.

                  6. It'
    • I recently reformatted my Windows partition to start fresh as well.

      Before the reformat, I had HL2 + Deathmatch, CS & CS: Source, DoD: Source, FarCry, Doom 3, and a bunch of other, random games.

      After, all I installed was HL2 + Deathmatch, CS & CS: Source and DoD: Source. Why? Because I couldn't find those damn CDs or the CD keys for the others.

      When I went through this "bullshit," which was last Friday at 3:00, I just downloaded a 708KB installer and entered my Steam ID and password. Then I t

    • I had to re-intall windows on my PC last week. To re-install my steam games, all I had to do was to re-install Steam itself (a quick download, followed by a quick install), sign in and select the games I wanted to re-install from the list. It took a few hours to get them all in (HL2 is a pretty big download) but the next morning I was up and running again. Yes, you have to trust that Valve won't fuck up and lose your account but when it works, it couldn't be much simpler than that...
    • Some of the comments here seem a little uninformed (with regard to the current state of steam)

      For instance it is possible to use steam while not connected to the internet, it has an offline mode so you can still play single player games. Probably multiplayer too on a LAN (haven't tried it though)

      Also, they recently added a back up option so that you can backup your games (plus all the patches, maps, etc you've downloaded). Admittedly, I just checked and for me this is 10GB of stuff to back up. But I do us

  • by SoCalChris ( 573049 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:45PM (#14609722) Journal
    Speak for yourself. I live in a rural area, the best I can get is 84kbps over an 802.11b connection from some small ISP 30 miles away. I'm sure there's plenty of other people here in the US in the same boat as I am, living in a rural area without access to broadband.

    Online distribution is fine, just make sure that the product is still available on regular media that I can order online, or pick up at the store.

    And before anyone suggests moving, living in a small valley just a few miles North of Yellowstone far outweighs not having large bandwidth available.
    • I lived in an urban apartment 25 miles away from downtown Chicago, and the best connection I could get was 14.4 dialup. No other options. I lived there for five years. If I still lived there, I still wouldn't have any faster access. I actually broke into the telco panel in the building to re-wire all three of my lines (which got me to 16.8 for a while) at one point.

      Broadband access is not universal. 56k is not universal. 28.8k is not universal.
  • As a Steam user. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Kesch ( 943326 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:47PM (#14609741)
    I actually had Steam before HL2 when they bundled it with the new Counter-Strike release (7.0 or something like that... My brother is the one who actually plays it.) I was able to preload HL2 onto my comp. When it came time to buy, I only had to tap in a credit card number to make it work. I heard bitching all around from others about the painful Steam experience associated with HL2, but for me it was actually quite pleasant.

    I also find it cool how they are serving up mini-content such as a free HL2 side scroller prior to the actual game and the free bonus level "Lost Coast." Plus, all those little apps hide under one button instead of further cluttering up my desktop and start menu.

    My brother also recently bought another game using some service known as direct2drive which also lets you download the game directly. I don't actually know how that went, but it seemed easy. He's not that computer savy but still had it working the same night.

    IMHO, these services get an A+ from me. I look forward to more distrobution models such as Steam (The one consequence I can see is having a million downloaders clogging up your machine.)
    • The problem with D2D is that since they use modified executables for the games they sell and they're not the games' primary distributor, they tend to lag behind when releasing patches (or just don't release them at all). At least with Steam, you know that Valve will distribute patches as soon as they're available.
  • Lockin (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Lord_Dweomer ( 648696 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:48PM (#14609762) Homepage
    I'm all for new and innovative distribution systems, when they help things rather than hinder them.

    Now, Valve is the pioneer with Steam, and while there are some great parts about it...unfortunately the downsides outweigh them significantly.

    Downsides
    Unreliable - I'm sure many here remember the first day woes of Steam as fans the world over all tried to access Steam for the first time only to be out of luck as it was down. This would have been fine, since there is a great single-player game in HL2....except for the fact that you need to connect to Steam initially to gain access to that.

    No Hard Copy - While its great to be able to download the game whenever you want, this is a huge problem for people who like to sell their games when they move on to the next one. You can't sell your license to the download.

    Lockin - This is my biggest gripe with them. Valve has proven time and time again to be a greedy company. Why should I trust them with this system, especially when they have a lot of my personal details? Additionally, this system lets them begin the process of charging for every single thing they can. For example, you now need to pay for the full versions of DoD and NS. That would not have happened without Steam. In the future, I'm sure all the good mods will be sold through Steam, thus taking what was once done out of love by fans and given out for free to enhance value of the game (and drive core game sales!) and turning it into yet another money making tool rather than the 'added bonus' it used to be considered by the community. And if you think charging for mods is bad, wait until you head down the EA path and start adding additional weapons that are useable in the core game but only if you bought the expansion. Can you say "pay-to-upgrade weapons in FPS"? Yeah, not fun.

    All in all, digital distribution online is the way of the future. I just don't trust a company like Valve to handle it.

    • You're right to criticize the reliability of a service like Steam. Reliability is a 2-way street. My internet connection at home is a little shoddy, and it really sucks when I can't play a SINGLE PLAYER GAME while my internet is down.

      I disagree with you that there is no hard copy. True, you don't get nicely pressed discs or manuals (though HL2 only came with a quick reference card) but you don't have to deal with DRM to make as many copies of the game as you wish. If you don't mind connecting to the
      • "I disagree with you that there is no hard copy. True, you don't get nicely pressed discs or manuals (though HL2 only came with a quick reference card) but you don't have to deal with DRM to make as many copies of the game as you wish. If you don't mind connecting to the internet every time you play (though many do mind) then it's actually an improvement."

        Except you missed my point...when they have it set like this, you don't OWN the game, you're RENTING it.

        "Finally, I also disargee with you about DoD. Ye

        • "Except you missed my point...when they have it set like this, you don't OWN the game, you're RENTING it."

          Well, isn't that true even of games that don't require the internet? That's the beef with copy protection like Safedisc or DRM. Consumers can't win. Either they must be connected to the internet to play or they can't make copies of their storebought media. Ultimately the decider comes down to which is the most likely inconvenience - a scratched\lost CD or shoddy internet. As the internet improv
        • Except you missed my point...when they have it set like this, you don't OWN the game, you're RENTING it.

          And what's the problem with that? By using the software you are buying into their business model as far as it extends to that software. (Perhaps distributors/producers should make it VERY obvious though that parting with cash does not constitute ownership).

          It's a free market you live in. The supplier can choose any method they like to distribute their software, and also set the parameters surround

          • Ok, yes, I understand I have the option not to purchase it and vote with my money. Unfortunately they happen to make one of the best games currently out there, and that is causing me a great deal of frustration. I held out for a while, but finally gave in. The bigger problem though is that now the rest of the industry is seeing that it is fine to do this. When they all collude to lock people in with this, the free market is no longer working correctly. That is my bigger fear.

    • How much are you paying for NS? Because that's still free. Fact is, valve bought CS and DoD and they are the ones upgrading them to source/releasing new material. They can charge what they want. And they charge a) because they can (and people will buy) and b) to pay for development. The NS team has comments on their front page about how funding is hard to come by, and without it NS would have been done a while back. When does a mod become a seperate game?
    • Re:Lockin (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jchenx ( 267053 )
      No Hard Copy - While its great to be able to download the game whenever you want, this is a huge problem for people who like to sell their games when they move on to the next one. You can't sell your license to the download.

      That's actually one big reason why game companies LIKE download-distribution methods like Steam. There was an earlier Slashdot article where publishers frustrated by second-hand game sales [slashdot.org].

      Now, Valve COULD implement a method where you could sell your license to download. They would just
      • There ARE benefits to the lock-in system. Remember, physical media isn't foolproof. If you accidentally break or lose your media, and no longer have a receipt (or its long after the return period), then you're out of luck.
        Copying a CD or DVD is quite simple, cheap and fast. It is not a fair trade to trade all the disadvatages for the convience of not burning 5 CDs.
    • No Hard Copy - While its great to be able to download the game whenever you want, this is a huge problem for people who like to sell their games when they move on to the next one. You can't sell your license to the download.

      Well, you can certainly sell your Steam account to anyone if you want to, for the value of all games you have registered. If you really sell every game when you're done, just create a new steam account for every download.

      For example, you now need to pay for the full versions of DoD and

    • We've been doing this over at Stardock [stardock.com] since 1998, and 2001 for games. GalCiv II [galciv2.com] betas have been going out via digital distribution for half a year now. And we've been partnering with independant groups since . . . what, 2003? Remember Gish? Uplink? Frontline Command? We got 'em [totalgaming.net].
  • Oh, you mean how it took four fucking hours to register the damn game, AFTER 30 minutes of installing it? Yeah that was a damn lovely suprise. Bravo Valve, for leading the way on mass frustration of customers. I'm sure Blizzard wouldn't be nearly as good at it as they currently are, without Valve's trailblazing efforts. Now what was that comma... oh yeah: /golfclap

    Here's hoping digital distribution gets 'figured out' before it gets 'fucked up' (again).
    • The gluttony implied by complaints of having to wait "four fucking hours" for a video game should make you ashamed. Some people don't have medical care / food / a place to live, and another segment of the population can't wait four hours for a video game. If you happen to be an American, thanks. You've made me ashamed to be an American.
      • by cornface ( 900179 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @04:20PM (#14610136)
        The gluttony implied by complaints of having to wait "four fucking hours" for a video game should make you ashamed. Some people don't have medical care / food / a place to live, and another segment of the population can't wait four hours for a video game. If you happen to be an American, thanks. You've made me ashamed to be an American.

        If you accidentally cut off your foot with an axe, don't cry about it and rush to the hospital, you selfish glutton. Some people don't have legs!
      • The gluttony implied by complaints of having to wait "four fucking hours" for a video game should make you ashamed. Some people don't have medical care / food / a place to live, and another segment of the population can't wait four hours for a video game. If you happen to be an American, thanks. You've made me ashamed to be an American. What that hell was that? You are the one who should be modded troll.
    • Why the fuck was that modded "troll"???

      FFS - I had exactly the same experience - install from CDs, install steam, wait for steam updates to download, wait for steam to install updates, wait for steam to download HL2 updates, wait for those to install.

      About four hours is correct. Then the game itself is like an interactive waiting simulation - why the hell were there so many loading screens? Walk for a minute, load, walk for another minute, load...

      I thought PC games were past this kind of crap.

      Personally,
      • PFFT. I never had a problem with Loading screens in HL2. I think your box just sucks. my teh 1337 b0x0rz ran HL2 with out a problem. Plus the game Rocked in General.
      • [Half Life 2] is like an interactive waiting simulation - why the hell were there so many loading screens? Walk for a minute, load, walk for another minute, load...

        I thought PC games were past this kind of crap.


        If you're a PC gamer, you owe it to yourself to invest in Good Hardware. "Minimum" system requirements almost NEVER are what we would consider "adequate".

        I've played the HL2 demo, and it behaved the way you described. So did Far Fry, and the Doom3 demo (though that DID scale very well). Battlefiel
  • something's wrong... (Score:3, Informative)

    by sm.arson ( 559130 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @03:52PM (#14609817) Homepage
    Players could download Wolfenstein 3D from a number of FTP sites and BBS file areas, and play the whole thing for free. If they liked it, the game encouraged players to send id a set donation of a few dollars.
    I'm pretty sure that you could only download the first episode of the game for free, and when you registered the game you were able to download the rest. The entire game was NOT offered simply for free. Seems like an important fact they could have checked. I know this isn't an oprah novel but, come on people!
    • You're right. The same applied to Commander Keen, Doom, Duke Nukem 3D, and even Shadow Warrior. They all had the first episode (usually out of three) free, and the rest you had to pay for. Some of them (Duke Nukem, Doom) also had certain weapons, items, and enemies placeholdered out in the shareware version. There was no donation about it. These were not free games, they were basically demos - get part of the game now, buy the rest if you like it.
  • I like steam if only because when my apartment burned... I still had my valve games. When I reinstall... I can just log into steam and my games will download. At work... I can install whatever I want without lugging the disks in and risking their destruction.

    Steam is good and will be better when friends start workign again. How hard can that be? It has been a long time since friends worked.
  • Wolf3D 4 Free? (Score:3, Informative)

    by CyberVenom ( 697959 ) on Tuesday January 31, 2006 @04:04PM (#14609960)
    The article claims that Wolfenstein 3-D was completely free with a donation requested if you liked the game. This fits well for the thought flow of their article, but is entirely untrue. Wolfenstein 3-D had only the first episode available for free, with a registration fee required before Apogee (id's publisher at the time) would send you the rest of the game in the mail. This is the model that their earlier Commander Keen games had used as well. It did not rely wholly on the selfless donations of patrons - the payees received something for their money; the other 2/3s of the game! In my opinion the success of Apogee and id had far less to do with community spirit and donations than it did with game addictions and allowance money - but of course, that wouldn't be as warm-and-fuzzy of a tidbit for a "downloaders are historically good people" article without this "slight" misstatement of facts.
    • Wolfenstein 3-D had only the first episode available for free, with a registration fee required before Apogee (id's publisher at the time) would send you the rest of the game in the mail.

      'Twas the same with Doom. The first part of it was free to download, to copy around, it was on every magazine coverdisk for months... I got to the point where I knew my way around Knee-Deep in the Dead better than I did my own high school :)

      Never really got into the other two episodes, when I finally did get around to g

  • GarageGames [garagegames.com] seems to be doing pretty good with their shareware downloads. Gish is amazing.
  • Downloading games isn't just for pirates anymore. It's also for adventurers [darkarts.co.za].
  • It was an interesting article, but I was surprised to see they named Strategy First (http://www.strategyfirst.com/ [strategyfirst.com]), a company I helped found, as being Russian. Strategy First started in Montreal and still has its head office there. Although we have a reputation in Canada as being more socialistic than the States, we're definitely not part of Russia.
  • http://trygames.com/ [trygames.com] has big-name titles. You can download the trials, which are different from the "trial" trials, then pay for the keys if you like it. The trials are actually the full versions, but are time-crippled. You can check it out.
    • Yeah, I've used Trygames recently to purchase games for my kids. In my mind, downloadable games are the perfect choice for kids since they ALWAYS scratch their CD-ROMs. Unfortunately, the Trygames catalog is pretty disappointing -- several of the kids' titles are over 10 years old.
  • Before embracing digital distribution, I strongly suggest that you read the fine prints.
    If you read the Steam Subscriber Agreement, you'll see that with your $40 or so, you have never bought a game, not even a license to play the game like all for the other games you might have. What you have paid are subscription fees to access some contents on some online service.

    And the differences are significant:
    - First, usually you can transfer a game license, but you can't transfer a Steam subscription (section 1
  • Lineage 1 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by FirienFirien ( 857374 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @06:53AM (#14614578) Homepage
    Lineage 1, you might recall, was a subscription-only product. In the days of yore it was a pain to download the gig-sized package and then patch with goodness knows how many extra files (Episodes 1-n); with your account you could opt to have a CD sent to you for free. Ebay always had a run of these CDs when a new episode came out, because you could get the content online with the autopatch, and sell off the CD cheap to some unsuspecting person who was interested.

    Lineage 1 came out in 1998; digital delivery is by no means new!
  • i am currenly working in south america. I went to the local computer store where they had about 100 copies of age of empires and microsoft flight simulator for 60$ ( neither of which i was looking for) I then went to the closest thing to a best buy which is the street market where you can buy a random selction of games ranging from diablo to the newest titles (never sure what language they will be in) for about $2.00. As a result If I want a good game I have gone online I seem to play guildwars, or steam
  • I had purchased Half-life before Steam was released. Then Steam came out and I used that to install Half-life on a rebuild of my gaming rig. I ended up using my cd-key for that. Then I bought the silver package of HL2 when that came out. The silver package of HL2 also contains the original HL along with some other mods. I tried to give my original HL cd to my brother but unfortunately, the cd-key is tied to the Steam account and now, I just paid for two copies of HL and I have a useless cd just sitting

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