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 Witcher  developer CD Projekt Red abandons DRM for future releases
Witcher developer CD Projekt Red abandons DRM for future releases
March 9, 2012 | By Eric Caoili

March 9, 2012 | By Eric Caoili
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More: Console/PC, GDC, Business/Marketing



The Witcher series developer CD Projekt Red has promised that it will no longer use DRM, or digital right management anti-piracy protections, in any of its future video games, due to its ineffectiveness and the problems it creates for users.

During a talk at the Game Developers Conference on thursday, the Polish studio's CEO Marcin Iwiński said that DRM doesn't adequately protect games from pirates, despite it potentially causing problems for consumers who've actually purchased them.

Iwiński said that the retail version of The Witcher 2, which featured SecuROM copy protection and DRM (the version sold on CD Projekt Red's Good Old Games digital distribution platform did not have DRM), was cracked by pirates within two hours after the game's release.

"DRM does not protect your game," Iwinski told Joystiq after his GDC presentation. "If there are examples that it does, then people maybe should consider it, but then there are complications with legit users."

Many PC gamers have criticized DRM for causing problems and unnecessary restrictions in their games -- such as Ubisoft's single-player title From Dust needing a constant internet connection to play. The publisher removed the DRM soon after players complained about the practice.

CD Projekt Red has also come under fire for its efforts in fighting piracy. The company threatened to sue people who downloaded copies of The Witcher 2 on torrent sites, and demanded 911 ($1195) settlements from alleged pirates -- which some felt was overreaching.

The company eventually decided that it would not pursue legal action against any alleged pirates in order to avoid squandering the good faith of its audience. Since its release in May 2011, The Witcher 2 has sold more than 1.1 million copies.


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Comments


Samuel Batista
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Here's one developer that put DRM on their game, saw it cracked within minutes of its retail release and went "well, that wasn't very effective". It's perplexing to me that big publishing firms are blind to this fact.

Maria Jayne
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Annoying pirates, doesn't make them customers, annoying customers, can make them pirates.

Seems obvious but apparently it isn't.

Zach Grant
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I buy a couple games from Steam a week, but I've actively avoided Ubisoft games like the plague, even if they are 75% off.


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