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Submission + - The Anti-Pirate System That Will Probably Work. ( 4

spidweb writes: Much virtual ink has been spilled over Ubisoft's new, harsh DRM system for Assassin's Creed 2. You must have a constant internet connection, and, if your connection breaks, the game exits. While this has angered many (and justifiably so), most writers on the topic have made an error. They think that this system, like all DRM systems in the past, will be easily broken. This article explains why, as dreadful as the system is, it does have a chance of holding hackers off long enough for the game to make its money. As such, it is, if nothing else, a fascinating experiment. From the article, "Assassin's Creed 2 is different in a key way. Remember, all of its code for saving and loading games (a significant feature, I'm sure you would agree) is tied into logging into a distant server and sending data back and forth. This vital and complex bit of code has been written from the ground up to require having the saved games live on a machine far away, with said machine being programmed to accept, save, and return the game data. This is a far more difficult problem for a hacker to circumvent."
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The Anti-Pirate System That Will Probably Work.

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  • You just have to install Apache, some mods, tweak your HOSTS file and you're ready to pirate. Of course, some reverse engineering will be necessary but it's not, by any means, impossible to do it.
  • Perhaps this system will prevent piracy, but it'll also prevent a great deal of legitimacy. It seems to me that an anti-piracy measure which intervenes with the game itself, is a bad anti-piracy measure, and there will be an impact on sales. So what we have here, is Ubisoft trading loss of sales due to piracy for loss of sales due to obnoxious anti-piracy, plus they now need to maintain a DRM server. It seems to me, that they're going waaaay out of their way to solve a fairly insignificant problem. Just how

  • All that will happen is that someone will produce a server emulator that pretends to be the ubisoft server (reverse engineering the game in order to do so) then you run said emulator locally, add a line to your HOSTS file and boom, no more DRM.

    Regardless of what the server does, all you need is to capture enough packet logs of the transaction to figure out the protocol.

The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable. -- John Kenneth Galbraith