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Thread: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

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    News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    The CEO of games publisher EA expects to produce less boxed games in favour of the growing online and mobile markets.
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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Yay!.. They're finally getting it. Now they just need to work an economic channel of funds other than credit cards. Maybe steam should start making Xbox Live-like credit points card for the poor peons who neither want nor need credit cards.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Each to his own, I guess. Personally, like with music, I want physical product and am not interested in downloading games. But then, given what EA's stance is on DRM, I'm not likely to be buying their games in either form so I suppose it deoesn't matter to me one way or the other.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    Each to his own, I guess. Personally, like with music, I want physical product and am not interested in downloading games. But then, given what EA's stance is on DRM, I'm not likely to be buying their games in either form so I suppose it deoesn't matter to me one way or the other.
    Agreed, but anything to reduce the amount of packaging and transport costs (and the accompanied environmental effects), plus lessen the need for aggressive disc-protection DRM is very much welcomed in my books.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    Each to his own, I guess. Personally, like with music, I want physical product and am not interested in downloading games. But then, given what EA's stance is on DRM, I'm not likely to be buying their games in either form so I suppose it deoesn't matter to me one way or the other.
    EA's stance is to have a non-obstrusive disk check for disc based media, and authentication upon installation only for digital download.

    Will you really only buy physical copies of game that don't even have a disc check?

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    EA's stance is to have a non-obstrusive disk check for disc based media, and authentication upon installation only for digital download.

    Will you really only buy physical copies of game that don't even have a disc check?
    I don't want to turn this into another yet DRM debate, but no, that wasn't quite what I meant.

    On the subject of DRM, I've said before I won't accept "overly-intrusive" DRM. So briefly, It all depends what we each regard as "overly-intrusive", and what I regard as overly intrusive might well not be the same as you, or others.

    I don't much like a disk check on a physical disk, but I'll live with it. After all, I've bought many games that have that, and it wouldn't stop me buying one now.

    What I, personally, will not put up with is either having to have it authenticated by an online check every time I play it, or even that there has to be an internet connection. I'm not prepared to put up with only being able to play a game if a server operated by the games company says I can. What if the games company goes out of business, for example? I've bought a game I may then not be able to play. And yes, I know some of then say they'd release a de-DRM patch. But if the company had died, will they? I can't see it being a priority somehow. So I'd be risking buying a game that I then can't play at some point because the company has gone bust. Well, that ain't happening,because I won't buy games like that.

    Nor will I buy games that require me to install a Steam (or anything else) client, that then does a verification with Steam. Why? Partly because I don't want "client" software (let alone SecuRom, etc) that is or even might be talking out onto the web on my PCs without a damn good reason and a game isn't a damn good reason for me. Also, partly because my games machines aren't on the net, They are on a standalone private network that doesn't have a net connection, and I'm not connecting that network to the internet just to satisfy a games company's DRM requirements.

    See, I'm not an online gamer. I'm just not interested. Tried it years ago, and don't care to do so again. I either play standalone, or with a small group of friends, on an offline network. And I use those machines for some other things that I'm not willing to put on the net. Consider client confidentiality reasons for a start. A hacker can't hack or a virus can't infect what he/it can't connect to or infect because a connection doesn't exist.

    I haven't even bothered to connect games consoles like Xbox 360 to the net.


    Those games that I've checked recently have at the very least appeared to require more than a disk check for authentication. I've more or less given up even looking at PC games, from EA and everybody else, because it's too much of a problem working out what uses what method. All I've checked have referred to either requiring Steam, or "an internet connection", without specifying what it's required for. It could be for online gaming, which doesn't interest me, or for patch downloads, which I'd do on other machines, or it could be for DRM. I'm not prepared to spend ages researching a game before buying it to work out precisely what it does or doesn't require for DRM. One of my complaints is that there's a considerable lack of transparency on game packaging about just what it does require for DRM. I want to wander into a shop, spot something that appeals to me, and be confident I can buy it, install it and play it without worrying about whether I can authenticate it or not, because I rather doubt a shop is going to want to take it back if it turns out to require "intrusive DRM" and I'm not risking £30-£40 to find out. A disc check on physical media allows that. It's a pain, but a small one. Authentication by EA (or whomever) serves, or Steam, or a net connection, isn't a mall pain, it's a whopper for me.

    The upshot .... having bought hundreds of games, since the days of Tigers in the Snow on an Apple II in the late 70's, the only PC games I've bought recently are old titles on budget release, like one of the Myst series I missed when it came out. Hassles and/or lack of clarity over DRM prevented me buying some number of games over the last few years, not least of which was Halflife 2, or more likely, the Orange Box, but there's a lot on the list.

    So I miss out on games I would have bought and played. Oh well. I'm not going to lose sleep over it .... any more than EA are going to cry over losing my custom, I'm sure. And if the state of overly-intrusive DRM, online authentication etc means my PC game-buying days are over for good ..... shame, but so be it.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    I'm not turning this into a DRM debate either, just wanted to point out that EA's stance has changed - they only require simple disk checks now, and their online service is better than steam since it only requires activation on install - there's no need to fire up the download manager or connect thereafter.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Assuming you're right about the disk-check thing for physical media, then maybe I'm back in the PC games market. That I will put with, but the online cobblers I won't.

    Thanks, kalniel, I'll check it out .... just when I'd about given up in frustration.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    I do not like CDs. My PC doesn't even have a CDROM drive. I installed Windows via USB stick and I mount ISOs for the rare time that I need to install something from an image (like MS Office or some such thing).

    I used to play Diablo 2 running from an image, but Blizzard recently wised up and released an official no-cd patch, which made me happy

    The last boxed game I bought was about 5 years ago and I don't really care to start buying them again. Even then, I ripped them to a CD image and mounted them. I don't fool around with cracks or virtual drive cloaking either. If a game wouldn't work by simply ripping and mounting it, I wouldn't buy it or play it. Some forums are good for finding that stuff out ahead of time, before you buy the game.

    That's why I like Steam and Impulse. No CDs.

    P.S. I can't understand why SecureROM and media checks are still necessary for online games where you have to log into Steam or Battlenet, etc.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    All the big PC game companies have got it wrong! Games designed for game consoles are increasingly more complex and more hardware intensive and rightly so, but this strategy (no pun intended!) fails with most recent PC game offerings that are more and more hardware taxing. Why? You may ask, it's simple, as the trend quickly accelerates towards notebooks and netbooks and cloud computing, hardware hogging PC game developers are slowly painting themselves into a niche corner of hard core gamers thus limiting their market growth and potential. Portable computing hardware has come a long way in terms of hardware specs, unfortunately PC game developers are still developing games that even some desktop rigs choke on, and unless game coders rethink their game writing formulas based on more efficient coding rather than trying to up the harware ante on game requirements every 6 months, the only winners will be the console users and developers and the hard core gamers with deep pockets who can afford the latest Porsche of the desktop rigs...........digitrunner

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    Each to his own, I guess. Personally, like with music, I want physical product and am not interested in downloading games. But then, given what EA's stance is on DRM, I'm not likely to be buying their games in either form so I suppose it deoesn't matter to me one way or the other.
    I agree on all aspects (wanting a physical copy of the game and not buying EA games). I was slightly pleased at their last patch for Battlefield 2 although it came 2 years too late.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    I'm not turning this into a DRM debate either, just wanted to point out that EA's stance has changed - they only require simple disk checks now, and their online service is better than steam since it only requires activation on install - there's no need to fire up the download manager or connect thereafter.
    You can set registered games in Steam to run in offline mode so there is also no need to connect to Steam afterwards or be online whilst playing.

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    Re: News - EA to cut back on packaged games as online and mobile gain ground

    Quote Originally Posted by bradyjames View Post
    You can set registered games in Steam to run in offline mode so there is also no need to connect to Steam afterwards or be online whilst playing.
    But you still have to start Steam to play them.

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