Red Alert 3 DRM to Be 'More Lenient'

By Blake Ellison, Sep 09, 2008 7:29am PDT Chris Corry, producer of EALA's upcoming RTS sequel Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3, made a post on the EA forums chiming in on the PC version's DRM--better known as copy protection. "The copy protection will be configured to be more lenient than we've supported in the past," he wrote.

"In the case of Red Alert 3 (and all PC titles coming out of EA), we will use SecuROM," added Corry, referring to a brand of DRM technology used in previous EA LA releases like Command & Conquer 3. With Red Alert 3, however, a few restrictions have been eased.

The game disc will not be required to launch the game, and up to five installations will be allowed. After five installations, up from three for the EA published Spore and PC version of Mass Effect, users will be required to contact EA customer service.

Corry also took the time to give his take on the sometimes divisive DRM issue: "I think it would be a shame if people decided to not play a great game simply because it came with DRM, but I understand that this is a very personal decision for many of you and I respect that," adding, "I'm a lot less respectful of those people who take the position that they will illegally download a game simply because it has DRM." Many users against DRM often argue that a pirated game is easier to use than a legitimate copy since it sidesteps incompatibilities caused by copy protection.

The DRM controversy hit a head yesterday when found itself flooded with negative reviews for Maxis' Spore--another EA-published game that employs SecuROM copy protection--citing its DRM as reason to rate the game one star out of five.

Red Alert 3, which also famously features lo-fi FMV sequences in addition to its copy protection, hits PC and Xbox 360 this October.

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33 Threads | 157 Comments*

  • After having researched something similar to this exact subject for a few weeks work related, I am absolutely convinced this DRM is not intended to stop piracy what so ever. It's simply what EA hides behind to cover up it's actual goals.
    What they are basicly trying to accomplish is completely nullify 2nd hand trade in it's games. With a limited number of activations per game which are bound to an online account the buying and selling of EA games won't be feasible anymore. While I personally don't buy or sell my own games 2nd hand I still find this absolutely outrageous. First of all for proof behind the above statement check out the following link:
    Yes. EA calls 2nd hand sales in it's game a CRITICAL situation, you might be able to see their point if you feel that their 'we sell a licence, not the game' scheme is valid. However, even US law sides with the customer on this, which you can see in the following article:
    US law, which is generally not very customer friendly/protective, so imagine how much more strict it is in Europe. In short: Selling games, or even just passing 2nd hand games on to friends/family, is perfectly allowed and one of your rights as a consumer.
    To come back to one of my earlier statements that this DRM is not to combat piracy, I can indeed confirm that Spore which uses the same DRM system in essense as Red Alert 3 will use, had it's million dollar Securom cracked within hours- and the game was available to the public for download a week before the game became available in stores in Europe.
    The thing that makes me angry about this is that the regular customers like you and me are disadvantaged twice by this now. Not only do we pay for the game, we are the only ones inconvenienced by these redicilous install limits and online activations. Pirates do NOT have any of the securom protection(install limits etc) in their FREE version of spore, which is fully functional and can add user created content nearly as easily as paying customers.
    What makes it worse, (can it get worse?) the line which I often see people use to 'make things right' i.e. You can simply contact EA customer service to get extra credit, let me explain on this subject: Mass Effect, an earlier EA release uses the same install credit system and has been out for some time now. Users at a respected technology website in my country, who legitimatly purchased this game, have had a need to contact EA to request these new install credits, and have come with some very disturbing reports. Some of these users have been simply told that their stories are not good enough, and if they wish to continue playing the game they will have to purchase it again. Other users have had more luck, but even in the best case scenario it took 25 minutes on a long distance (extra charge) phoneline to get a single install credit back. More then that is not even negotiable.

    I don't like being treated like a criminal, while pirates get a better treatment, the world upside down if you ask me.

  • All future EA games? Good thanks for letting me know so I don't buy anything from EA until its' gone. Why should I be able to run what I want to run on my system as I build it and install whatever security and utility software I select? 1 dam virus on all my systems over 20 years and thats it, know why? I like to know what is on my system always and whats running or installed. And the one that got through was back in the dos days so a reformat was nothing. Shutoff AV or firewalls to just get a DRM check to work before it loads a program? Great software engineers they employ there no wonder so many malware/virii get through nowadays with idiot programmers and development companies pushing bad software out. But then their PR department will spin it to high heaven how it's all to prevent piracy and the like.

  • So what should we be thanking them?
    Wow, up to 5 whole installs? Golly gee. Now we'd be only a little less screwed then if we bought spore. This is the reason I didn't buy Bioshock until they removed that limit. I was already skeptical of RA3, but now its just out of the question. I'd rather never play it at all then support EA's DRM crap. As others have said here why can't they just put it on steam and be done with it? PC gaming now a days is a crap shoot. Every new game I have to read tons of reviews just to find out if it has DRM or not.

  • Wow, 5 installs. That's only $10 per install. How generous.

    I've owned the Orange Box since January and I've already installed it 4 times. I would be seriously pissed if I started having to call in to every game publisher every time I re-image my gaming PC. Hell, if it wasn't for all this DRM crapware that comes with games I wouldn't need to re-image it so often.

    The 2 version old Safedisc from some game I installed in January (the game was removed but the crapware is permanent) replaced the driver for my optical drives and new version of SecuROM doesn't like it so my shiney new game wont play. Re-image. Some game installed Starforce and now I get a BSOD when I try playing DVD's. Re-image. Turbo-tax just overwrote my FAT table and corrupted my hard drive. Re-image.

    Any one of those scenarios would cause me to burn 2-3 activations in less than a week. And this happens. A LOT.