Spore, Mass Effect PC to Require Online Validation Every Ten Days to Function

By Nick Breckon, May 06, 2008 1:28pm PDT Update: Electronic Arts has relented to the pressure.

Original story: BioWare technical producer Derek French has said that the PC versions of both Mass Effect and Spore will make use of copy protection that will require online validation every ten days in order for the games to continue working.

"After the first activation, SecuROM requires that [Mass Effect PC] re-check with the server within ten days (in case the CD Key has become public/warez'd and gets banned)," said French in a post on the BioWare forums.

If customers do not come online after ten days, the game will cease to function.

"After 10 days a re-check is required before the game can run," added French. "..An internet connection is not required to install, just to activate the first time, and every 10 days after."

The check is run when users activate the game's executable file, with the first re-check coming within "5 days remaining in the 10 day window."

According to French, Maxis' Spore will also make use of the same scheme: "[Electronic Arts] is ready for us and getting ready for Spore, which will use the same system."

French also noted that the online requirement will be clearly labeled on the games' packaging.

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149 Threads* | 592 Comments

  • I just thought something awesome. What if all the pre-orders cancelled today.

    That would send a message. Those were sales that were in the bank. You can't claim those are sales lost to piracy. I don't know if there were any pre-orders for this already or not, but if there were, then they definitely need to be canceled because of news like this.

    In a post below there was a 'damned if you do, damned if you don't' situation, but the pre-orders is a perfect way to express disagreement with this policy.

    (Now I"m just sad I don't have any pre-orders to cancel.)

  • All you are doing by pirating the game out of spite is making it very easy for people to point to piracy as a reason to go console-exclusive. And also screwing the people that made the game, most of whom had nothing to do with deciding to put copy protection on it.

    If you want to send the message that the copy protection scheme sucks, buy the game and then call Customer Support to complain about the issues you have with the copy protection scheme. Call them a lot. Customer Support costs money and is a measurable way of telling the Publisher how many paying customers are having a particular problem.