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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Sacred 2 - Copy Protection Revealed

Default Sacred 2 - Copy Protection Revealed

September 11th, 2008, 11:40
Ascaron sent out a German PR with details about the CP & DRM solution for their upcoming action-RPG Sacred 2 - Fallen Angel. A FAQ explains further details. They have chosen SecuROM, but the implementation is more customer friendly than in other recent games. Details:
  • 1 box, 2 licenses
  • 1 license can be used online at a time; implying you use either your PC or your notebook, but not both at the same time.
  • 2 can be played via LAN
  • 2 can be used for SP
  • unlimited installations, 2 activations
  • Activations can be revoked through multiple channels (online-auto, online tools, offline). Revoke & re-activate can be done an unlimited number of times.
  • One PC component can be replaced without problems. Beyond that revoke & re-activate is the recommended procedure.
  • There will be an emergency hotline for DRM issues due to failed hardware, etc. The manual page with the key serves as proof of purchase.
  • The hotline will be available 365 days a year, 24 hours per day. For standard phone rates. (This may apply for Germany only.; ed.)
  • Internet connection is needed during installation. The FAQ explains you can use a friend's PC for manual activation though.
  • You can play without the DVD. Itīs not needed in the drive.
  • No private data will be transfered during the activation process. You cannot even enter critical data.
  • The activation servers will be available for the next couple of years. Should this no longer be the case, the DRM will be patched out.
More information.

After receiving information from Ascaron, this newsbit has changed to the following (changes in bold):
  • 1 box, 1 license
  • The license can be used online to play on our servers at no charge for the license owner
  • You can install Sacred2 on a 1000 PCīs but playing at the same time = 2x. This can be your Desktop and your notebook.
  • 2 can be played via LAN with one license
  • 2 can play SP
  • Unlimited installations, 2 activations parallel. Activations can be revoked through multiple channels (online-auto, online tools, offline). Revoke & re-activate can be done an unlimited number of times but limited per day to avoid abuse. It has to be a fair trade.
  • One PC component can be replaced without problems. Beyond that revoke & re-activate is the recommended procedure.
  • Putting up the internet a Serial code to abuse the key ad revoke tool will not work.
  • There will be a worldwide email hotline for DRM issues due to failed hardware, etc. The manual page with the key serves as proof of purchase.
  • The service at Securom will be available 365 days a year, 24 hours per day.
  • Ascaron hotline during biz hours for standard phone rates. (Germany only)
  • Internet connection is needed during installation. The FAQ explains you can use a friend's PC for manual activation though.
  • You can play without the DVD. Itīs not needed in the drive.
  • No private data will be transfered during the activation process. You cannot even enter critical data.
  • The activation servers will be available for the next couple of years. Should this no longer be the case, the DRM will be patched out.
  • The whole activation process takes less than 10 seconds and runs in the background after typing in the serial code.
  • Sacred2 license is transferable. The EULA doesnt say no to it because its the right to sell what you bought before.
Last edited by Myrthos; September 13th, 2008 at 20:32.
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September 11th, 2008, 11:40
I was afraid this would be something bad but actually it seems quite the opposite. Two licenses are pretty good. I think families with two kids will like this as they only will need to buy one copy ( as long as they play off-line ). I particularly like these statements:

You can play without the DVD. Itīs not needed in the drive.
The activation servers will be available for the next couple of years. Should this no longer be the case, the DRM will be patched out.
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September 11th, 2008, 11:47
Originally Posted by Gorath View Post
[*]The activation servers will be available for the next couple of years. Should this no longer be the case, the DRM will be patched out.
And there is the assumption - that whatever would cause the servers to go dark would allow the resources to create and distribute a patch …

— Mike
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September 11th, 2008, 11:49
The newsbit has been updated.
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September 11th, 2008, 11:54
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
And there is the assumption - that whatever would cause the servers to go dark would allow the resources to create and distribute a patch …
The servers will not go down. SecuROM (= Sony) hosts them. They cannot afford to create a precedent everybody would use against them. It would kill their DRM business.


LAN play with the family is indeed allowed. The online license is for one person only, though. On a sidenote, the original Sacred allowed 4 player LAN gaming with one CD. That was an accident. Ascaron wasnīt aware of it. When asked a community manager sent it to QA and they replied they had found out 4 players works if you take out the CD when the game has started.
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September 11th, 2008, 11:57
I can't believe they're forging ahead with secureRom after the Mass Effect (and now Spore) outrage. No one imagined that Spore would suffer any loss of sales - and it seems a fair number of people are not buying the game because of the bad publicity. I can only assume that the publishers have some pre-existing arrangement with secureROM which locks them into using this increasingly loathed piece of software.

I have no problem playing with a DVD in the drive - but I do want to install the game I paid for when/where I want without faffing about installations/revocations and other nonsense. And I simply don't believe they would every "patch out" the DRM if they went belly up (since they'd be erm…gone?) I won't rehash the same old arguments but I will say that I'm disappointed that they've gone this route - not that they (or their publishers) give a toss about that I'm sure.
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September 11th, 2008, 12:13
Originally Posted by Gorath View Post
The servers will not go down. SecuROM (= Sony) hosts them. They cannot afford to create a precedent everybody would use against them. It would kill their DRM business.
Ok, I didn't realise that - but that doesn't make they idea of authenticating online (repeatedly) any less palatable. I'm pretty sure Sony is not obliged to keep these servers up in perpetuity - if their business interests shift, they could simply shut them down - Sony is sufficiently large and diverse to weather the outrage of some disgruntled people. I just think it's an unnecessary restriction that has limited effectiveness and aggravates the hell out of many people and means that I may not be able to play games N years done the line (even if I have an emulator) because they sold/'rented' a product to me that was in a sense incomplete. But this is a tired old theme and no one in corporate la-la land ever listens to what people say anyway.
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September 11th, 2008, 12:29
And here I was hoping to play the single-player campaign completely offline, like the original. Scratch the preorder. This just turned into a wait-n-see.

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September 11th, 2008, 12:37
It sounds mostly reasonable, except for the non-transferable license part. I don't see why I shouldn't be able to sell something I bought for good money if I do not like it.
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September 11th, 2008, 12:46
Hmm. It sounds good enough. Too bad Diablo 3 won't have LAN like Sacred. But Battle.net should be good enough.

A little bit off-topic:
@GhanBuriGhan: Ghan-Buri-Ghan as in that leader of the wildmen that helped Theoden and the men of Rohan? I myself just finished LOTR, great book btw, and was suprised to see that name.
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September 11th, 2008, 13:29
pretty sure Sony is not obliged to keep these servers up in perpetuity - if their business interests shift, they could simply shut them down
If you bought a product, and it becomes unplayable duo to servers going down, without a patch to remove the protection. I don't see any problem to download such a patch from a site not affiliated with the maker of the game.
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September 11th, 2008, 13:33
Hmmm, tsk-tsk.
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September 11th, 2008, 14:08
Originally Posted by Stanza View Post
And here I was hoping to play the single-player campaign completely offline, like the original. Scratch the preorder. This just turned into a wait-n-see.
Why donīt you just play the SP campaign completely offline instead?
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September 11th, 2008, 15:04
Originally Posted by Gorath View Post
Why donīt you just play the SP campaign completely offline instead?
"Internet connection is needed during installation." The only systems I have with network connections are not for gaming. It's only the "use a friend's PC to activate" comment that prevents this from becoming a "can't install, can't play" game. I'll wait until it's out and there's confirmation that this actually works before I consider buying. I've had to deal with Sony's "activate from another system" for some of their software, like SoundForge, so I've already found out how pissy their activation schemes are when they can't phone home every time they start up. I don't know if it uses Securom, but having it work fine for a couple months, then having to reactivate a couple times inside a week, I don't have the highest opinion of Sony or their authentication systems (Securom is part of Sony).

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September 11th, 2008, 15:07
Yes, itīs of course impossible to predict how it works in practice. Maybe the process gets fucked up somehow, despite the best intentions.

You can already look at the auth process.
http://www.unlock.sacred2.com/

According to one of the Ascaron MDs, I think he is responsible for business development, all you have to do is find a way to type those two numbers in and get the returned number into your Sacred 2.
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September 11th, 2008, 15:09
You guys are soooo silly. This could only be for the German version, don't you realize? The Germand an Int'l servers are separated.
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September 11th, 2008, 15:13
Maybe. But why is the activation site available in 6 languages?

So far itīs indeed only confirmed for Germany. But does anybody believe theyīre putting so much work in such a system to switch to something else in foreign markets?
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September 11th, 2008, 16:04
Whats up with that PC gamers bill of rights ?

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September 11th, 2008, 16:07
Not even the guys who wrote it implement it into their games.
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September 11th, 2008, 16:10
Indeed, it is in English, too. Ah well. The revocation tool is super easy though! I downloaded it to see what interface it would have and it seems to be automatic besides just running the .exe so it won't be much a hassle.
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