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Thread: The Distant Guns DRM thread of doom (do not create new DRM threads below)

  1. #41
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    Thanks for the info Norm....A REQUEST FOR THE FOLLOW UP GAME!

    If I may make a suggestion / beg you....please consider WWI for the follow-up to Distant Guns (which I will buy on the first day its released, BTW). I have spent the past YEAR listening (over and over again) to the unabridged audiobook version of "Castles of Steel" by Robert Massie and must say that it is as interesting a time for naval warfare as the Russo-Japanese War was 11 years eariler. Please sir, I BEG you to consider it......

  2. #42
    Forum Commando Bloodstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KeithV
    If I may make a suggestion / beg you....please consider WWI for the follow-up to Distant Guns (which I will buy on the first day its released, BTW). I have spent the past YEAR listening (over and over again) to the unabridged audiobook version of "Castles of Steel" by Robert Massie and must say that it is as interesting a time for naval warfare as the Russo-Japanese War was 11 years eariler. Please sir, I BEG you to consider it......
    Of course Keith, bravo. With interesting possible scenarios, some hypothetical battles in 1917. or 1918. Let's say that German fleet was not sunk at Scapa Flow but died gloriously in sea battles. Damn, can't use smiles buhu forum was better before Mario

  3. #43
    Forum Conscript Neutrino 123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reckall
    Pirates, as a matter of fact, do crack copy-protection schemes, know where to download games (even wargames), and play/sell pirated games without having a single problem. Half Life 2 was available in a "Steamless" pirated version ten days after the game was published - so much for the legit customers that *had* to depend on Steam.
    Of course, but when some pirates crack a protection scheme, not all pirates can instantly take advantage of this, as pirates are not one group, but many (though most likely with several connections between them). One would expect some sales from people who would otherwise pirate to be gained from copy protection, and it would be a signifigant benefit to the designers if overall sales are increased by even a few percent. Of course, quantitative discussion in this matter is completely useless, since we don't have any kind of statistics in any relevant matters on this topic (though it would certainly be interesting).

    Quote Originally Posted by KeithV
    If I may make a suggestion / beg you....please consider WWI for the follow-up to Distant Guns (which I will buy on the first day its released, BTW). I have spent the past YEAR listening (over and over again) to the unabridged audiobook version of "Castles of Steel" by Robert Massie and must say that it is as interesting a time for naval warfare as the Russo-Japanese War was 11 years eariler. Please sir, I BEG you to consider it......
    I second this. The first release could cover only the Grand Fleet vs. High Seas Fleet North Sea campaign, and submarines probably would only need to be modeled abstractly in the campaign. Then expansions could be released for other surface actions in WWI.

    The Spanish American War uses ships very similar to the RJW, but seems extremely unbalanced to me. All the historical scenarios would be unbalanced in favor of the United States (I think the Spanish had at least one wooden ship in their Phillipine force, and the battle near Cuba was like Tsushima, but with the Spanish not even having a technically superior fleet like the Russians did, and also bottled up in a port), and only in the campaign could a skilled Spanish player have any kind of signifigant effect. On the other hand, the work required for the Span-Am war would probably be small, and I would buy it if it came out as an expansion for Distant Guns.
    Last edited by Neutrino 123; 19 Feb 06 at 22:33.

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    Of course, but when some pirates crack a protection scheme, not all pirates can instantly take advantage of this, as pirates are not one group, but many
    This is (don't take offence) a very simplicistic and naive view of the pirate scene.

    Pirates often crack games just for the desire to show off. A game with an unusual and "unbeatable" protection scheme is targeted by the various groups like an olympic event - and glory to the one who cracks it first, derision if you put out a crack that doesn't works just to beat the competition; it is almost a professional sport.

    After the game is cracked, it is distributed. I won't mention the channels, but as of 2006 they are exactly the ones that everybody is talking about. The cracks themselves - along with more detailed instructions if needed - are meanwhile made freely available over the net. Funny thing is that the cracks are formally published for legit customers under the "right to have a no CD/no activation procedure" umbrella. Of course, if you use them to play a pirated game, "blame on you".

    Average time for a game from publication to availability via pirate channels: one day. Sometimes even less if the pirates manage to get a copy of the gold master before the game hits the shelves.

    Bottom line: if you really want a pirated game you will know how to get it or where to go to get it - free of hassles and protections. And that's really it.

  5. #45
    Forum Conscript Neutrino 123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reckall
    This is (don't take offence) a very simplicistic and naive view of the pirate scene.

    Pirates often crack games just for the desire to show off. A game with an unusual and "unbeatable" protection scheme is targeted by the various groups like an olympic event - and glory to the one who cracks it first, derision if you put out a crack that doesn't works just to beat the competition; it is almost a professional sport.

    After the game is cracked, it is distributed. I won't mention the channels, but as of 2006 they are exactly the ones that everybody is talking about. The cracks themselves - along with more detailed instructions if needed - are meanwhile made freely available over the net. Funny thing is that the cracks are formally published for legit customers under the "right to have a no CD/no activation procedure" umbrella. Of course, if you use them to play a pirated game, "blame on you".

    Average time for a game from publication to availability via pirate channels: one day. Sometimes even less if the pirates manage to get a copy of the gold master before the game hits the shelves.

    Bottom line: if you really want a pirated game you will know how to get it or where to go to get it - free of hassles and protections. And that's really it.
    Gee, thanks for ignoring my parenthesis RIGHT AFTER the quote!

    If what you say is true, then anti-pirateing measures are completely useless. If they were useless, then probably companies wouldn't expend any money on them. I'm guessing that all possible pirates are not quite as linked as you say they are.

    On the other hand, it is possible that the benifit from copy-protection is negligible, in which case it would be a waste for companies to practice it. However, since companies are the ones with sales statistics, they are probably better able to judge then us (and I am not sarcastic when I say probably - though I consider it unlikely, I would still not be surprised by many companies making a marketing mistake ).

  6. #46
    Member # 3665 Redwolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reckall
    Pirates often crack games just for the desire to show off. A game with an unusual and "unbeatable" protection scheme is targeted by the various groups like an olympic event - and glory to the one who cracks it first, derision if you put out a crack that doesn't works just to beat the competition; it is almost a professional sport.
    Right on.

    Just like with virus "kits" - the people who develop the cracks are not those who use them. There is s small group of talented peopel who have no time or desire to play games or do anything with computers they "rooted". But these people are very determined and very good and crack software for sports, and the better the challenge the more effort is put in.

    On the other side of the equation are the protectors in the CD copy protection industry - who are completely outgunned. Not only do many firms lack any capability to do hard cryptography, all of them operate within very narrow hardware parameters. They cannot delay getting their software cracked for more than a few days even within their acceptable rate of pissed off paying customers.

    The notion that somehow people who want a cracked game don't find the cracks in wishful thinking.

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    Gee, thanks for ignoring my parenthesis RIGHT AFTER the quote!
    The parenthesis said:

    "as pirates are not one group, but many (though most likely with several connections between them)."

    The connection between groups has no weight in "availability of pirated software" matters: once a game is cracked, the instructions and files to do it by yourself are distributed openly over the internet. Everyone, EVERYONE can download a game and the relative crack if he really wishes - the only restriction being your kind of connection. Over a 56k it will take a while, but at the end you have your pirated game.

    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    If what you say is true, then anti-pirateing measures are completely useless. If they were useless, then probably companies wouldn't expend any money on them. I'm guessing that all possible pirates are not quite as linked as you say they are.
    It is against forum rules to provide links, so I'll not do it; but do a very simple search or ask around, and you will find sites openly hosting cracks for everything - cracks done by all the main pirate's groups.

    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    On the other hand, it is possible that the benifit from copy-protection is negligible, in which case it would be a waste for companies to practice it. However, since companies are the ones with sales statistics, they are probably better able to judge then us (and I am not sarcastic when I say probably - though I consider it unlikely, I would still not be surprised by many companies making a marketing mistake ).
    It would not be the first one. One thing is sure: many copy-protection schemes are much more a pain for legit customers than for pirates. Remember: if you are a pirate you can have a Steamless, fully working version of Half-Life 2 - up stat.

  8. #48
    Forum Conscript Neutrino 123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reckall
    The parenthesis said:

    "as pirates are not one group, but many (though most likely with several connections between them)."

    The connection between groups has no weight in "availability of pirated software" matters: once a game is cracked, the instructions and files to do it by yourself are distributed openly over the internet. Everyone, EVERYONE can download a game and the relative crack if he really wishes - the only restriction being your kind of connection. Over a 56k it will take a while, but at the end you have your pirated game.
    It only takes one pirate to make the software avalible to everyone, but an individual will have a much more difficult time finding a crack that is only on one website then one on many websites.

    Quote Originally Posted by Reckall
    It is against forum rules to provide links, so I'll not do it; but do a very simple search or ask around, and you will find sites openly hosting cracks for everything - cracks done by all the main pirate's groups.
    I did this for a decent spectrum of games. Half Life 2, of course, was the easiest to find cracks for. Looking at the first few google pages for Silent Hunter III yielded very few, less obvious results (one of which led to the FBI homepage! ). Finally, Dangerous Waters and TOAW had no results in the first few pages of this google search.

    This seems to indicate that for popular games, even an excellent copy-protection scheme that prevents, say, half of pirate 'rings' from quickly aquireing a crack, will make no difference, as cracks will still be easy to find (and the pirate rings that didn't initially get it will get it from others). Meanwhile, for an unpopular (relatively, in terms of number of people interested) game will already be more difficult to find a crack for, especially for an amature crack-finder, or one who has never before even looked for a crack. In this case, copy-protection can make something already more difficult to find even harder. True, cracks could be found for the determined, but not everyone looking for a crack will be willing to put in maybe more then a couple minutes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Reckall
    It would not be the first one. One thing is sure: many copy-protection schemes are much more a pain for legit customers than for pirates. Remember: if you are a pirate you can have a Steamless, fully working version of Half-Life 2 - up stat.
    Well, not knowing exactly what Steam is, I can't comment on this, but I've played Matrix games, Starforce-protected games, and others, and have ever been inconvienanced for more then a couple minutes during the installation. Only a tiny fraction of players will be signifigantly adversely affected by copy-protection schemes (besides maybe Starforce, which seems to screw up CD-copying for everybody).

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    It only takes one pirate to make the software avalible to everyone, but an individual will have a much more difficult time finding a crack that is only on one website then one on many websites.
    Post a message on a gaming newsgroup asking where to find a NoCD patch for a game you legally own. It's that easy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    Finally, Dangerous Waters and TOAW had no results in the first few pages of this google search.
    The Battlefront edition of Dangerous Waters had no protection, so obviously you will find no cracks. You can find the NO-CD crack for TOAW on this very forum http://www.strategyzoneonline.com/fo...read.php?t=352

    Quote Originally Posted by Neutrino 123
    Meanwhile, for an unpopular (relatively, in terms of number of people interested) game will already be more difficult to find a crack for, especially for an amature crack-finder, or one who has never before even looked for a crack.
    NO-CD cracks for all HPS games (to just give an example) are freely available over the net, and quite easy to find.

  10. #50
    Game Developer, Storm Eagle Studios NormKoger's Avatar
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    There does not seem to be much point in stepping into the philosophical argument over whether designers deserve to actually see some return for their work. Suffice it to say that if copy protection were not both necessary and at least somewhat effective, folks like me wouldn't bother with it.

    We do have plans for this engine, but the details are still up in the air. Most likely we will be visiting WWII the next time around. After that, WWI is an obvious and attractive topic. The WWII treatment will probably be by campaign and theater, at least initially, rather than the entire conflict. WWI looks a lot more like the RJW, with a full length campaign including treatment of surface raiders, submarines, etc.

    I believe that the Spanish American war is doable. Granted, the battles were lopsided. But with a campaign game the options become more interesting. In some ways, the situation was a bit like the RJW. The Spanish weren't likely to win a stand up fight, but with a bit of creative thought they might still have managed considerable naughtiness. There was pressure on both sides to widen the war to include bombardments of coastal cities, which would introduce a political requirement to protect those cities. Then there are the wildcards. Sphincters tightened up aboard the US task force at Manila whenever the Germans or Japanese paid a visit. Yep. There is potential here.

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