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Posts posted by ChristianSt

  1. First of all: Your statement "However until Act 2 arrives you need a Steam account for now. That’s true." is just wrong. DF has said they have altered they plans and will release a DRM-free Act 1 basically ASAP (most likely this month).

    OpenSource and DRM are different things. They are somewhat related (especially on an ideological level). But dragging in OpenSource into a DRM-discussion isn't really helpful.

    I think it's OK to protect games with DRM, that is: Steam. If you have no internet connection, it just offers you to play offline. You can download and install on any machine. You can set up an account on a friend's PC and play your games there. I really love Steam to have my games available anywhere. Steam is not Microsoft DRM, Steam is not SecuRom or whatever. Technically it works like DRM. But really what is the disadvantage? DRM (like Steam) for games is ok. For music and anything else not. Because I can't just copy my legally bought mp3s on any player. That's why DRM is a bad thing on mp3s. But where are the disadvantages of Steam? I don't get it. Sorry.

    As others have already said in this thread, there are peoples that really have problem with the Steam-DRM: e.g. offline-play doesn't really work for them.

    Also the "You can download and install on any machine" has some restrictions to it: you can only download it and play it on machines with the same OS. Wanting a version for a different OS than the machine you have Steam on doesn't work. So I couldn't download my legally bought Broken Age on my Windows-PC where I have Steam installed and move it to my Linux-PC where I don't have Steam to play it there. It would be like you need a PC with a working sound card to download MP3's.

    Yes, companies are allowed to use DRM or other things. But in my eyes DRM is something I'm absolutely not OK with. Nobody can force me to buy a PC game only if I also buy a car on top of it. A company can sell a game only on top of a car buy. But I can just skip on it entirely if I don't like that car. The same applies for DRM. I will treat any product with DRM simply as non-existing for me. If there is an awesome ebook that is on the market right now, but it is sold only with crappy DRM like on Amazon? I will not buy it! The author will just miss a seller (or maybe if I'm in the mood (and it is available) I'll buy a dead-tree-version, which has no DRM).

    But the links you posted even seem to imply that DRM doesn't do anything useful for the company in question. Other than frustrating people that legally buy their product. And I personally don't like to engage with companies who think that I'm just some sort of criminal that will distribute their product as far as I can.

    If that is the case, it would be just better to drop DRM (since DRM isn't free) and just treat paying costumers not like criminals.

  2. The vote lacks some more fine-grades.

    I would back the same pitch with the same goal again. An important point of that was the documentary.

    For example I did not back Massive Chalice because the documentary level I was interested (download of it), was at the $50 level and I didn't had that much interest in the game itself. If they had the same reward structure as on DFA I would have most likely chipped in for $30. So the reward structure/price point is a relevant factor, too.

    And personally I would like to wait to actually play Broken Age before making that decision. Which is another point that makes me hesitate a bit - that initial Act 1 was not planned to release DRM-free. But DF said they changed that and will release it soonish (this month), so I'm forgiving on that. Without that change it would make it quite hard to convince me to back again.

    I think even without the Documentary I might back again, if the pitch/game sounds interesting. I backed other Games, too - and I can't say right now that I'm unsatisfied with what I have seen so far. But I couldn't play Act 1 so far, that might change.

    To sum it up: I would say it is quite likely that I would back another similar KS.

  3. You got nothing. Read the EULA. Obviously the first time in your life. You think you cant hear me. You will hear me perfectly when Steam cancels your account and you realize that you gave money for getting absolutely nothing. Cause thats what you playing after you account is cancelled. And now think bout the same scenario with any other platofrm. Will I still play my bought (!!) games after GoG is gone? Indeed. Will I still play my games, which i bought at resellers, after thos retail centers are gone? Indeed. Cause I bought them. and all what you paying for is a stupid subscription. with no user rights at all. When Valve thinks that they trash you, you are gone. and you cant do anything bout it. So …. tell me again … what are you playing then?

    And dont tell me that this doesnt happen. It happens to every (!) moron which pays for the highest online prices out there at Steam. Cause with every change of the EULA you could either swallow every sh*t they do to yu in his changes or …. everythings gone. The games, your money…. All and forever. So tell me again … isnt this the most stupid economic decision a human can make?

    I loathe DRM/streaming/rental rights/similar stuff myself and will not spend a single cent on it . But that doesn't entitle me to insult others who are fine with that (for whatever reason I might have or they might have).

    All such behaviours causes is that it weakens your position (which is mine, too, so that's why I'm angry about it), because any argumentation on that basis just ends in needless flaming. (And that is probably the best case)

    @Contract: can you show/point to anywhere where DF said the DRM-free version will be available the moment any non DRM-free version from it will be publicly available?

    Or that it will be available for anything other than the complete game?

    facts. Which you simply don't have. (Unless you are saying you have made a separate contract with DF)]

    @"At first they told as simply their nonense of act 1 an 2 over and over again": When did this happen? The only information on Act 1 (related to Steam/DRM) release is Update 31: "Act 1 Steam only". After that they made two posts in this thread to say they are looking into it and then in Update 35 they said "Will happen, ETA next month", with an comment here that said basically ASAP.

    And if you say that the released the Cave DRM-only (which I can't say anything on, also it makes a difference if they said they will release a DRM-free version or not), then following to your own logic you should only blame yourself for the current situation...

  4. "We will see how DF will act in the future, but I have a good feeling that they won’t do something like this again. If they should do this again (which I really think they won’t), then yes I would say my (currently regained) trust in DF is lost (and then most likely unrepairable)."

    Fool me one … shame on you. Fool me twice … shame on me. They betrayed us. Its that simple. The only thing that happened now is, that they realized that they dont get away with their betrayal as easy as they hoped. DF never ever gets money and from anyone i know again.

    If that would be the common opinion, than DF would have been actually stupid to try to get us a DRM-free version even now...

    Because from a rational perspective if you don't even try to care about the company any more, why should they try to do something for you?

    I see this more as a error/screw-up. Such things happen, and you can fix them and learn from them. But if people pop up and just say such thing like you do, it doesn't help anyone. And if you say that is naive on my part, then I will only answer that I personally think it is better to be a bit naive than to be so deeply cynical.

    And on the part "Indeed they owe me a DRM free version. That was part of the buyers contract at the time of payment.". I'm not even sure if you could do anything legally about it, if there would be no game at all. Kickstarter/Crowdfunding is possible a pretty complicate legal situation.

    Also as others said (and I can't argue anything about that), technically even without the old release plan of Act 1 Steam only, you still would get the DRM-free complete game. And DF never did say they wouldn't do that. And on top of that I haven't heard anyone said "all version will release at the same moment". Sure I think it should be the default assumption, but it doesn't make it to something you could argue on legally.

    Insulting other peoples also doesn't help anyone to take you serious, at all.

  5. @MacCave: On some level you are right - but on some level it is possibly to say that you are wrong. I think you are somewhere on the right site, but you should be at least more polite. [And it doesn't really help if you still complain after someone did what they could to help you. That just seems that if they can't do exactly what you want them to do, they shouldn't even start bothering, because you will still complain either way.]

    @MusicallyInspired: On some level you are right - but on some level it is possibly to say that you are wrong. I think you are somewhere on the wrong site, but at least you are polite about it.

    The problem is that imo a game that is described for "we get it DRM-free and on Steam" has first of all no clear meaning of time. I think if someone says X and Y, and not saying that one will be later, they should arrive on the same time. So a release schedule should take this into account. And if it is somehow not possibly, then a few reasons would be good. I have no problem that some delays happen for whatever reason. Such things can just happen. But this (initially) wasn't just a delay.

    Despite the problem with DRM on Shadowrun Returns, HBS managed to release a DRM-free (though backer-exclusive) version alongside the public Steam Launch. And I don't see any fundamental reason why this should be impossible with Broken Age. And SRR got also split into multiple parts, though how these parts interact for SRR (game+expansion) is different than how Broken Age is organized (part 1+part 2).

    While splitting the game in multiple parts makes the whole process more complicated it also doesn't change the fact that Act 1 had public launch. It is somewhat problematic to change the release plan without taking previously made statements into account. And in my eyes "Steam only release of Act 1" and "DRM-free game" are just incompatible with each other. So it would be good to know why that decision was made. [The only "reason" I have heard was that Act 2 deployment will be easier. Yes that is a nice side effect, but from that standpoint it is DF's fault to split the game in the first place.]

    Also DF is only a group of humans - and humans make errors. Errors can happen and maybe just nobody caught it somehow (probably because many people who had a chance didn't realized it or had (for them) much more important stuff to do). And if that happened, what should DF do? The only thing they can do is pretty much just fix it ASAP. [Ok, from that standpoint it is probably a bit troublesome that the update seems to imply that it is something DF is nice enough to give us, and not something we should have*. At least I haven't heard any statement that says that this is an error of some kind.]

    With the (quite limited) information we have gotten I think it isn't completely fair just to chastise DF. And mostly it doesn't help our cause at all. (On the other hand I would agree that more information would be a really good start to clear such problems.)

    We will see how DF will act in the future, but I have a good feeling that they won't do something like this again. If they should do this again (which I really think they won't), then yes I would say my (currently regained) trust in DF is lost (and then most likely unrepairable).

    *I'm not saying that this is DF's opinion on it. I think only that the update can be read in that way.

  6. Could things have been better? Sure.

    But I think under the given circumstances this is a good solution - and better solutions were probably just not possible on such a short time. If we still had some months before public release, then maybe it would be possible. But I think we can't seriously expect DF to have an instant solution.

    And at least I think that DF will plan better in the future. And if that is the case, I'm fine with waiting a few weeks. It would still be much better (for all!) if the problem wasn't there in the first place, but that ship has left the bay long ago.

    (The only thing that I find a bit nebulous it that ongoing talk about the Beta. Somehow I just read it in a way that Beta=Act 1=Public Release, which doesn't make any sense to me. But I'm just going to pretend that it doesn't mean anything relevant or that I just misunderstands what DF tries to say with that.)

  7. That's no different than retail. In fact, if you wanted to play a game on a Mac back in the 90s you'd have to buy a whole new copy of the game! At least with Steam you have all three at no extra cost. The fact that places like Humble offer three different copies for platforms is a bonus, not implied.

    You're using the word 'streaming' and defining it by its effects not by what it is. Downloading is simply not streaming. It's misleading to say otherwise. You can say it's LIKE streaming as far as your experience goes.

    I'm not asking to get a Windows and Linux version. But why I can't simple choose what version I want? It's like I go into a store and buy a Windows game, and at the checkout I get told "sorry, but you can only buy a Windows game if you show us that you have a Windows PC". That is the same ridiculous thing as Amazon does with eBooks: Why need I some kind of "registered kindle device" to buy an eBook?

    Yeah ok, maybe I have used streaming false here (but that is mostly because I have no experience with Steam, I just said how it feels to what I heard from it, maybe I should have made that clearer), but from a technical point of view streaming is pretty weird to start with ;) (since it is a download, but only a "temporary" download. But I don't want to turn this into a discussion what streaming is or not)

  8. My point was that you only get a "installed" game. Whether it is "installing" something or not, you get only get the the a version that is usable on this system (or might work on others if your lucky), not the version of the game you want to use. Why can't give me Steam not just the "zip"/"installer"/"call it whatever you want" to get the game on the system I want? That is where Steam leaves the realm of being only a download service and starts being DRM. For example if I buy a DRM-free game for a Windows PC, I can just download it on any machine (Linux, Mac, whatever) and move it to that Windows PC. Also it doesn't make things better that Steam doesn't give me any help whether it is moveable or not (and on what circumstances).

    I personally would compare it with streaming content - I can watch it now (so on the machine I'm on), but I can't move it to another machine to watch it there (without being lucky or circumventing some shenanigans). But if you want to say you don't think it is streaming than I'm fine with it, but it my eyes it just feels like the same.

  9. Steam doesn't stream an installer. It doesn't have one. It's literally like downloading a zip and unpacking it. There is no install process, besides maybe some registry entries or third party libraries upon first run, but that's after "install". Though, you can create backups that install from disc. So there's nothing hidden that you can't access. And it even has the ability to create an installer for you if you want one, where there wasn't one initially. Steam is something of closed torrent delivery system with built in extra features designed for gamers. I do agree that the old method of having physical media that required no outside permission to run gave more control to the consumer and that was easier for peace of mind.

    And yeah, we've been buying licensed games since the 80s.

    So either you misunderstood me (I'm talking about the games, not Steam itself) or I'm quite misinformed (which I don't think, since then this wouldn't be a problem).

    Could I turn on my steam client on my Windows PC, Download something there (for example Broken Age). Move that stuff to my Linux machine (which had never any contact with Steam) and use this something to get an working/running version of Broken Age to play?

  10. On the Steam is/isn't streaming: Basically I think it is streaming: It streams the game installer to present you an installed game. But you don't get that installer. Sometimes an installed game is working fine - but there are circumstances where it doesn't work (e.g. Steam is installed on a different OS than you have on the target platform). Which in my eyes also demonstrated that it is using DRM.

    I also haven't anything against Steam because it is Steam. I only don't like Steam because they forcing some kind of DRM (namely the installation process) onto all games, whether a game uses Steamworks (or whatever) on top or not.

    If Steam would change that (so they could deliver truly DRM-free), then I would have no problems with that.

    But possibly they don't even want to to that, because it would kinda contradict their "Steam Subscriber Agreement", which explicitly say they in fact don't sell any software, but only licenses:

    A. General Software License

    Steam and your Subscription(s) require the automatic download and installation of Software onto your computer. Valve hereby grants, and you accept, a limited, terminable, non-exclusive license and right to use the Software for your personal, non-commercial use (except where commercial use is expressly allowed herein or in the applicable Subscription Terms) in accordance with this Agreement, including the Subscription Terms. The Software is licensed, not sold. Your license confers no title or ownership in the Software. To make use of the Software, you must have a Steam Account and you may be required to be running the Steam client and maintaining a connection to the Internet.

    (emphasis mine)

    So according to that they are in fact very generous that there is even an offline mode or that some games work moved. But if they would sort that out (and give proper DRM-free games), then I would have no problem to go and use Steam.

  11. First of all thanks DF for making clear that the situation is understood by you. I really hope there will be a solution for this (although I'm personally kinda skeptical)

    Well, let's sidestep the poop flinging and look for the kernel of truth within his statement.

    So I guess I undertstand the view of someone who is much more anti-DRM than me not wanting to download Steam at all (most Steam games use the DRM, I think). But even in those cases I guess I don't see the harm in having an account, in order to play the Steam version of a game that you already know you're getting a DRM free version of further down the line. I understand, as I said at the top, that it's a personal choice and that's cool, but I guess what I'd like to see from the discussion some more words on why it's so bad to have a Steam account at all that you're not willing to temporarily use one for games that will, ultimately, be DRM free. To me, it's the principle that such versions will be made available that really matters.

    Thanks for the well written post, though I'm only quoting the part I'm responding to:

    One problem I have with that is, that by doing so we are just sending wrong signals ourselves:

    1) We say we are fine with DRM for now, and if it happens somewhere down the road (maybe even 2-3 years) than we are fine with it. And as I said I don't see a reason to support something (even before it is done/started!) only to wait extra long. [so this plays along the "being treated like 2nd class costumers"]

    2) Number-crunching people (I don't know which numbers get crunched from whom and to what degree): If 95% of all DF backers use a Steam-key (even only in the beginning) it is a massively different scenario/message than if only 50% uses the Steam-key [Numbers are random, I don't have a clue how they are/could be, but it shows the problem.]. In the worst case the developer even says: "All users use Steam anyway - so way should I even do DRM-free versions in the future?". And that would even hurt the DRM-free movement in the long run.

    3) I'm not sure about how it works, but if there are costs associated with redeeming a Steam-Key, then I don't really need to cause costs for the Steam-version and the DRM-free version. [so maybe that is only a somewhat imaginative reason.]

    4) As a way to say: I'm not ok with Steams policy to use DRM itself at all. But if I just use Steam myself anyway, I basically say them "I don't care about that myself too much". So why should they even bother with the idea of changing that in the future?

    5) Keeping Broken Age Steam-exclusive for X months is in my eyes not delivering a DRM-free and also adds to strengthening Steam and its position on DRM. [Albeit maybe it was too optimistic to think that a "DRM-free game" means that it will release DRM-free ... ]

    And yeah, the Oeatmeal comic and the four currencies article (where the animated version comes from), does a good work to illustrate some of the reasons for pirating, which is basically the reason why DRM is just bad: it is only increasing "Pain-in-the-butt-dollars" without doing anything at all. And I value "Pain-in-the-butt-dollars" pretty high myself

  12. They also said only two other things: 1) Backer exclusive Steam Beta. 2) Finished Game on Steam.

    They never did say that a part of the game (that is not being the finished game, like Act 1) will be released to backers.

    => It would perfectly fine to only sell Act 1 and not let backers accessing it. (Since they had their beta and will receive the game when it is complete, all is fine)

    So if that doesn't work - why does it work with the DRM-free version?


    Because you can't release anything - not full game, not part, nothing - without BETA being before that. If beta would come AFTER Act 1 release (not a finished game release, but still a release) - it would not be a beta at all.

    So we were promised to Beta Act 1? They never did that - they said we will have a Backer exclusive beta. If Act 2 has a beta-phase and it is backer only, it still would honor that promise. [On that of that I never suggested to release it without the backer exclusive beta... read my post)

    So your argument says Act 1 = release, so we should get it. The problem is we have no DRM-free release. Yet you say we weren't promised one, so we don't need one.

    I can't see any logic behind the reasoning you apply here.

  13. You have said yourself that releasing Act 1 to the public after the beta is closed would "directly violating what they promised". But everything they said that isn't the Backer-exclusive Beta was said for both Steam and DRM-free. So if you could be complaining about the missing Backer-Steam-version in that case, I certainly can complain about the missing DRM-free-version now.

    I was saying that releasing beta to public without making it accessible to backers at all would of course violate their promise. It was a quote from Vainamoinen who suggested it.

    There wasn't everything being said or whatever, they simply said that final release will also be DRM-free and that's that.

    Act 1 is not final release of the game, I don't supposed you would argue with that.

    Complaining is fine, sure, that's what the forums are for.

    What personally bugs me are attempts to artificially justify this sense of entitlement with seemingly objective facts that are actually just opinions.

    "There wasn't everything being said or whatever, they simply said that final release will also be DRM-free and that's that. "

    They also said only two other things: 1) Backer exclusive Steam Beta. 2) Finished Game on Steam.

    They never did say that a part of the game (that is not being the finished game, like Act 1) will be released to backers.

    => It would perfectly fine to only sell Act 1 and not let backers accessing it. (Since they had their beta and will receive the game when it is complete, all is fine)

    So if that doesn't work - why does it work with the DRM-free version?

    If you stick to that reasoning it would be be perfectly fine to release Act 1 not to backers at all and just make an exclusive Beta for the complete game before Act 2 is finished ...

    [The other alternative would be Beta = Act 1. But that is a ridiculous proposal, even DF doesn't consider Act 1 beta. The Steam release is for a more or less complete standalone game which gets a content update (Act 2) down the road.]

  14. I think HBO suffers from this a lot, too, since there's literally no way to get their content unless you have cable service and HBO on top of it. People that WANT to buy the shows can't, so they just get it illegally.

    Unless they wait for the DVD/Bluray, but I get your point.

    Yeah, I/others certainly can wait for DVD/Bluray - but way do I even need to wait for something that other people can legally buy it?

    I want to posses the stuff I buy (whether it is books, music, games or videos) - for that reason I don't buy things with any kind of DRM (and even using DVD's is kinda comprising that).

    But that just means I can't buy most videos/series and I'm massively hindered in buying games/books (luckily music works. Unfortunately most big music stores only sell lossy digital formats, which sucks, but that is not the topic).

    The reaction I have is that I just don't buy the stuff (so I'm just more or less a lost possible paying consumer) - maybe I can wait some time to get it eventually, which just sucks in itself. But I can understand why others that want something without bad service (in my eyes DRM is just bad service. If I buy a dead-tree-book I don't need a "certified reading lamp" to read it.) acting differently (In this case: pirating). And from a standpoint of the seller a pirate is probably even a better consumer than one who doesn't buy. The pirate at least can share how awesome this thing was and make some advertising that maybe more other people buy legally.

  15. This is what actually happened: You compared the valid request for a DRM free version of Act I with an improv billion dollar demand. You did this because you wanted to communicate that

    (a) you found those requests to be exaggerated and

    (b) you thought them to exceed the promises of the Kickstarter tiers.

    Wrong, you missed the point. It was a sarcastic response with a ridiculous proposition to a similarly sarcastic post by ChristianSt with another ridiculous proposition. I did that because I wanted to communicate that using ridiculous comparisons doesn't quite work in trying to prove your point and could equally be used both ways.

    See, he just basically wrote the same post again? probably missed my response completely

    You contested each and every one of those bullet points with the hastily added idea that the Steam version of Act I was supposedly already a bonus for backers. You did this to

    (a) uphold the idea that requests for a DRM free version are exaggerated and

    (b) uphold the idea that the literal promises of the Kickstarter tiers still have relevance.

    The "extra" idea however isn't even supported by the greatest Valve fans in this entire thread. Had Double Fine released their first episode on Steam without giving 'that bonus' to backers, the community would be in an entirely different mood right now. Heck, it would be an entirely different FORUM. Mob mentality abound. Customers getting Act I four (and possibly, let's face it, up to seven) months before all backers? Whooo-hoooo, imagine the press alone! That would result in the first kotaku article I'd actually enjoy reading in my life.

    And you would personally rip this forum to shreds for not getting your "extra". And that would be because you would feel that you are objectively being ripped off by Double Fine for good.

    Why would I care if anyone used this point before or not? It's not like I'm supposed to be part of some hive mind.

    For now Double Fine just gave us the Steam beta it promised, if they canceled that - of course that would be directly violating what they promised and there would be an uproar. Personally I actually would be for them releasing Act 1 simultaneously for both backers and non-backers - because right now we have situation were legitimate customers are unable to get it via legal ways, but can easily pirate it - and this is just lost revenue for Double Fine.

    Putting words into my mouth and imagining me doing stuff I wouldn't do is all fine and all, but for now you never actually addressed anything that I wrote.

    Speaking of "Putting words into my mouth" - where did I make that post you responded to? ("It was a sarcastic response with a ridiculous proposition to a similarly sarcastic post by ChristianSt with another ridiculous proposition.")

    I don't have the feeling that you responded to any of my post and certainly I can't remember writing sarcastic posts with ridiculous propositions. So before complaining about other people putting something into your mouth, you should stop doing that yourself.

    If you agree with "For now Double Fine just gave us the Steam beta it promised, if they canceled that - of course that would be directly violating what they promised and there would be an uproar." that should mean there should be an DRM-free version to: You have said yourself that releasing Act 1 to the public after the beta is closed would "directly violating what they promised". But everything they said that isn't the Backer-exclusive Beta was said for both Steam and DRM-free. So if you could be complaining about the missing Backer-Steam-version in that case, I certainly can complain about the missing DRM-free-version now.

  16. an extra bonus ... something extra... something extra...

    The idea that the Steam version of Act 1 is "something extra" for backers, which most of your argumentation hinges on, is not supported by anything, especially not official statements. The communication expressly is that they are releasing something finished with Act I.

    Were you promised in Kickstarter pitch early access to release-quality first part for free? No? Then that's the definition of the word "extra".

    So by that argument you would be totally fine if they revoked backer access for Act 1 on public launch and only people buying the new "Act 1" have access to it?

    By your logic that would be perfectly acceptably: since Backers are only eligible to the Backer exclusive Steam Beta (which is now and ends with public release) and to the final game (Act 2, released somewhere down the road), but not to any "complete peaces that have public release before the game is completed" (which is what happens January 28th).

    But I think we both agree that if DF would propose that, (nearly) everyone would protest about it (and rightfully!).

    But because only some 2nd-class backers* who care about DRM-free are affected by it, suddenly it is ok?

    * I'm not saying that you (or any other user) said that, but that is how I feel treated.

  17. No worries, apology cheerfully accepted. Allow me to explain why I brought it up - Double Fine have past form in avoiding Steam's DRM restrictions, e.g. in Psychonauts, so I think it's a legit open question whether the final version of Broken Age on Steam will still require Steam to play. We just don't know yet. All we know is what they're doing with the beta. I originally brought it up in brackets, because I knew it was a side-point, not directly to do with the matter at hand. When Vainamoinen questioned it I responded in more detail. I hope that explains it.

    Also, the reason I think there are legit reasons is really quite simple - if there weren't, why aren't they doing it? They already announced a DRM free version. If they could just flick a switch and do it, why aren't they doing it? It's absurd to suppose that the only reason they aren't releasing a planned release right away is because they just.. don't feel like it. I think it's a very safe assumption that there are -reasons-. No, we don't know what they are for sure, but I've speculated about what some of them might be. And yes, it would be nice if they'd go into detail about them, but they haven't (yet! Bear in mind this is also an extremely busy time for them. They're juggling compatibility/localisation bugs, publicity for the actual release and probably more besides - if you look at Greg Rice's forum updates this is one of the few posts he's replied to at ALL).

    I would be all for a detailed reply on what is holding up a DRM free release. Even though it's not affecting me I'd be generally interested to know. I have my suspicions, but it's based on incomplete knowledge. But whatever it is, I'm pretty sure the reason is better than 'eehhhh.' Because if that's all I had as an excuse, by now I'd be flicking the DRM free switch just to save the hassle.

    So allow me to explain why I think there is in fact a problem (and your "summation" on it isn't backed up with facts, but relies on wishful thinking. Don't get me wrong: it is nice to be able to trust DF enough to find a solution that contradicts their announcement):

    When Act 2 is released, there will be a DRM-free version of the full game available on Humble, but Act 1 requires Steam to download.
    (emphasis mine)

    If I implied that DF does this to spite us, then that wasn't what I wanted to say. But from all the information I have, it points to the fact that DF doesn't care that much about the DRM-free version compared to other versions. Even that you say they have "more important" stuff to seems to imply that you yourself think that the DRM-free version is more of a "bonus" that comes along with the "normal" version and nothing anyone should put any work into it. [i'm not saying the things you posted aren't important - but the DRM-free version is important, too. Or at least they should have told during the KS that they think it isn't that important and is handled more on a "if we have the time to deal with it kinda thing"].

    The only other official information (that I'm aware of) on this we have at all is Greg's post in this thread:

    Hey all, thanks for the feedback here. As people have stated before me, we were clear from the start that we would need to leverage Steam during the beta to help push frequent patches. However, we are not taking lightly your requests for a DRM free version. There are a lot of moving parts surrounding this conversation, but we're doing our best to figure out a solution that will please everyone. We'll get you more info when we can!

    Which seems to me like it is dodging the problem a bit or misunderstanding it a bit or not using the right words for describing the situation. And I don't even say that we need detailed information about it (though it would be nice), but we haven't received any information besides "no" and "we're looking into it". And sorry, but that isn't really satisfying for me. I can wait - I wouldn't say I'm impatient. But the public release date is coming nearer and nearer and we haven't gotten any information thus far.

  18. As a backer of "The Banner Saga", i have no issue with their DRM-free version arriving a few weeks late, because on their release day they actually told us "Steam version is up, we're working with GOG to deliver the DRM-free version as soon as possible".

    For me, that's the difference, they told us they're working on it and it will be available as soon as they polished it, they didn't act like DF did "Well, the DRM-free version... I forgot, sorry, but not now, we have better things to do, see you in six months"

    Sorry, maybe I was kind of harsh on Stoic - as I said I have backed out of The Banner Saga, so I have only second hand information. They way you present that makes it much more understandable. (I took < 5 minutes to look for information and don't have access to backer only information)

    @KestrelPi: I don't see how my addition to your post isn't relevant for Broken Age. For example someone reported in this thread that the Broken Age Mac version requires Steam. And if you think that it is irrelevant for this discussion, why do you even post it?

    Also I said it probably quite some times in this thread: only because you don't have troubles with any kind of DRM, doesn't mean that other peoples don't have trouble with it or that it is even DRM-free. And it is also nice that you *think* there are reasons for not releasing DRM-free Act 1 on Launch (which even implies that there will be even a DRM-free Act 1, something that DF hasn't confirmed. In fact they said in Update 31 that is something that is not going to happen.). But you thinking there legitimate reasons != there are legitimate reasons (even DF didn't say anything about any reason behind this).

    PS: I'm truly sorry for accusing you to not read the thread. But I have the feeling that more enough people don't bother to do so (which I got from your posts - since I just have the feeling I need to repeat arguments I posted already three times), so sorry if I picked the wrong guy to accusing to do so.

  19. Steam's DRM is optional and no, installing a downloader is not DRM by any reasonable definition

    Rights verification programs and drivers installed on your PC are in fact the entirety of the DRM technology, congratulations.

    With your kind of stance, you wouldn't even have identified StarForce or Tages as DRM. I find that idea alarming.

    Not even a little bit. Having DRM drivers on your PC isn't the same as them being used. Games that use those forms of DRM are of course... using DRM, that kind of goes without saying. But it's not DRM to install something on your PC that may or may not be used. DRM is Digital Rights Management. The (ostensible) purpose it to enforce restrictions on access to content installed/downloaded to a device.

    For example, if you have something in your game that enforces an internet connection to play it, or requires the disc in the drive, or is encoded in such a way that it will only work on certain devices or in certain countries and so on, that's DRM.

    Simply having something on your computer which installed games may or may not use is not in itself DRM. Simply requiring a particular installer during the installation process that doesn't need to remain installed to play the game is not DRM, any more than requiring a GOG account is DRM for GOG games.

    One can, of course, legitimately question whether they want DRM drivers installed on their computer (just as they can legitimately question if they want a GOG account). However, saying that the fact they are installed alone is IN ITSELF a form of DRM is quite ludicrous. I think there is a pretty clear and obvious distinction.

    And let me say as I've said several times elsewhere - it's totally up to the individual what services they're willing or not willing to use. I don't mind if someone doesn't want to use Steam or GOG or anything else for any reason. Good reason, bad reason, my opinion doesn't matter, I will and have argued with anyone using 'if you don't use Steam it's your own fault' type arguments. I do however think that there are some common misconceptions that can do with having attention drawn to them.

    Then read this thread before posting in it: Several people have already said that for example the Mac version will only play with steam open or that they can't use the offline mode because it is not working for them.

    For some versions it seams that you in fact don't need Steam (so you can it install on a machine and move it to another), but that works only in some circumstances, and requires that both platforms have the same OS. Alone the installation process in itself requires Steam.

    Also for the last time the topic is is not whether or not Steam is DRM.

    The topic is why we don't get a DRM-free version of Act 1.

  20. You're still ignoring the fact that at the time they didn't know the game would be released in 2 parts. When it was split 6 months ago, they decided at first they'd manage it through Steam Early Access, and it's much more recently still that they've changed their mind about that, and decided to just release it as a season pass style deal. So they really haven't had that long to consider their options about a DRM free release for part 1 only, and it's quite reasonable to suppose that they might want to take their time over deciding on their non-steam release strategy and that while they were in crunch-mode to finish part 1 probably wasn't the best time.

    If they were releasing all in one go, it would be reasonable to expect them to have had a longer lead time to organise stuff like release infrastructure on other platforms. But plans changed and with that we have to expect some level of flexibility.

    Double Fine have actually bent over backwards to honour backer promises - they kept a lot of info private to backers even after it became apparent that in some cases this was really harming their PR. They did so again with the Beta release even though it risked (and arguably caused) a messier launch than they'd like. They've frequently given us information prior to an announcement even though the chance of a leak was high.

    I don't think it's completely unreasonable for their response at this stage to be 'we're looking at it, please hold on a little longer'

    No, I'm not ignoring that. I am fully aware that DF has looked into this thread and I think (or at least I hope) that this will get resolved in a satisfactory way for all parties involved. Also that is exactly one part of why I and others are grumpy about it: We (the people who care about DRM-free) are treated like 2nd-class consumers/supporters/backers/whatever because they don't include us in their planning!

    But you are ignoring what DF is announcing to us! The didn't announce "We decided to make the public release earlier than planned, but we probably aren't going to make a DRM-free launch the same time, but we are looking into getting it in your hands ASAP!". They did say: "We release Act 1 Steam-exclusive". If they would have provided a good reason for it, than I would be saying: "Sucks, but you have tried what you could have done at least.". But they have given NO reason thus far.

    And only after a whole bunch of pages (and possible other people contacting them/complaining/asking about it through other channels) they said "we are looking into it".

  21. Another GOG user here.

    I love the guys behind it and I love their policy. They really respect their legitimate customers.

    I'm glad I didn't back The Banner Saga.

    And I don't think I'll back something on Kickstarter ever again. I will wait for the release, from now on.

    I'm not into GOG since they don't support my Platform (I think they should really do something about doing something for Linux-Gaming), but I love their position on DRM!

    As to not backing something on Kickstarter: I had no problems with non-video-game Kickstarter. I backed >50 different projects (of which only 10 where video games - most of them aren't in a release status yet, next is probably Wasteland 2, but I haven't personally heard of any DRM shenanigans there myself). I had never had a problem myself with other projects, best example probably being a whole bunch of books. For each book I got a DRM-free copy in .epub .mobi or .pdf (as was promised). Maybe some people are right that bigger names hurt Kickstarter though, but my personal Kickstarter experience is still pretty positive. I will definitely continue using KS, but I will probably dodge video game project in the future (or at least make sure that they are in fact try to do their best to deliver what is promised somehow).

  22. Maybe it's not as simple as it sounds?

    I mean, if it was really a trivial matter to release the DRM free version, why wouldn't they just do it right away? I'm pretty sure that Double Fine or the makers of Shadowrun Returns or The Banner Saga don't buy into the idea that DRM is good copy protection. That's not a niche idea that only anti-Steam folks have - it's pretty widely accepted. And without a publisher and shareholders to demand DRM, there's no real motivation.

    But the thing about Steam as a service for developers is that:

    1 - Most companies already have a working relationship with Steam, so it's easy to set stuff up there

    2 - The tools for delivering releases and updates are really mature and solid, they've made it so that it's almost trivial to push updates through the service.

    There are DRM-free services available, a few have been mentioned, but they each come with their own drawbacks and benefits - like Steam, it's a distribution deal that the company has to enter into. The alternative is to provide the infrastructure yourself for the release, which of course is a technical challenge for any large release.

    So there are probably decisions to be made about releasing the DRM free version, and it's probably not inaccurate to say that it's easier to release a DRM free version once the game is fully complete. Since they never promised day and date DRM-free releases (and never knew the game would be split in two until 6 months ago) they're not breaking any promises at all. However, as they have posted before, they are looking into options for the DRM release right now - so I don't know why this is still a discussion.

    (and as a lot of people have mentioned, Steam's DRM is optional and no, installing a downloader is not DRM by any reasonable definition so I'm not entirely sure why some people refuse to even get an account when it's quite possible to investigate whether a title will play independently of Steam or not - but it's their choice not to and so I won't press the point)

    But if they don't know when and how to release it DRM-free, why say "DRM-free" and not say "we will bring this in a DRM-free version, but we can't tell if we are able to do it on launch."? The first wording strongly implies that it will be released DRM-free (baring problems). Not some random time later. And it should be possible to investigate in nearly 2 years what options are possible and what not. They just could offer the DRM-free build as DL from their own site. Or if there are bandwith problems they could use Torrents to deliver it. And even the split is something you said they know for half a year. It should be possible to look into methods to deliver Act 1 DRM-free and not just say "Act 1 is Steam-only and we don't even give you any reason way we don't make a DRM-free version" two weeks before public release.

    And to the whole "they promised only a full game DRM-free". Yeah they did that (or more precisely they promised "the finished game DRM-free"). But if DF wants my support again, they should show me that they care about me. And just treating me the way they do right now is not showing that. Also you have to see that this thread got a lot better since Greg posted here [it shifted to a more general topic to regards in DRM, and not this stupid Steam vs. non-Steam bashin] - I hope we will hear more soon (and possible resolve it in a way that I'm able to really trust DF again). But if they need to stick to the letters to keep their promises than I don't see any reason to trust them in the future.

    They didn't say "ONLY the finished game will be DRM-free". When do you think the game is finished? I think that a finished game is the release version. Or do you say that the "finished game" is the game after it received its last patch? So in that case do we need to wait a year after Act 2 release to get to patch v1.39 so that then finally a DRM-free build will be distributed?

    (I think we have had enough of this. If you have the opinion that requiring Steam to install your game is not DRM, feel free to do so)

  23. I'm going to go play some more Banner Saga.

    Have fun. Say, wasn't that a Kickstarter that explicitly promised DRM free? Huh, I wonder why they break THEIR promises.

    Mh, I just investigated a bit - and as it seems as of right now there is seems no DRM-free version, but it will be available soonish. Just to say it: Hearing that I'm kinda glad I backed out before the end of the KS. I don't need yet another game where I need to ask why the version I payed for doesn't happen or is delayed.

    But seeing all this "DRM-free" advocated projects have problems delivering on it makes it kinda unlike that I'm going to back another video game Kickstarter in the near future. And if I do I think I would need to ask some serious question how they plan to treat the DRM-free version/backers.

    But right know I have the feeling that many developers on KS* just say "Mh, everything promises DRM-free, so we do it to! And then we forget about it later... Oh some backers have problems about not getting DRM-free games?... Mh, we try to make it happen some day - but for now have other people have their fun with the game." And I have the feeling that this doesn't help anybody in the long run. Promising stuff and not doing it (or delay it without reasons) is a good way to make people stop caring about what you promise them.

    * I have no clue if that is a fair conclusion, but from the Games that are more or less finished from KS that I have heard about it I haven't seen one that stayed truly faithful to their DRM-free promise (Shadowrun Returns [though they at least managed to sort that out mostly], Broken Age and The Banner Saga - so that sample size is kinda small.)

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