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GaryW536
September 13th, 2015, 06:22 AM
I don't often play modern games on my PC, mainly on my PS3 or PS4. I managed to pick up the Windows PC version of Batman: Arkham Origins from the supermarket for 3. I already have the game for my PS3, but thought for 3 it would be interesting to see how it compares.

After many hours of updates and faffing and installing the Steam online service I ran the game, configured the graphics for my primary HD monitor, enabled all the DirectX11 advanced features, and started through the amazing intro sequence. Then I got to the game itself. WOW! The graphics were unbelievably spectacular. The animation of Batman's cape, the realistic water and lighting effects, and the fluidity of the movement was breathtaking. I could now see why hardened gamers persist with the expense and faff of gaming on a PC. Putting aside the fact that it is a really good game the graphics alone are a work of art. My PS3 version simply does not compare.

I do spend more time playing, testing and preserving old retro games than playing current games on my PS4. I have recently preserved a large quantity of old MS-DOS games on floppy disk, like Monkey Island and Simon the Sorcerer. These games are around 25 years old but they are still great games. Even with the hardware limitations of the period the graphics are beautiful and gameplay is engaging. So this got me thinking. Batman: Arkham Origins required the Steam service to install and activate. Without Steam the DVD's are nothing more than drinks coasters. I have been researching this further and most modern PC game titles require Steam or similar services like Uplay and the Microsoft Games Marketplace.

What happens in another 25 years or so when Steam either no longer exists or no longer supports this old game? Where does that leave it? Will it be lost forever alongside 100's of other great titles which also require an online service to function? All that digital art and creativity wasted!

cobracon
September 13th, 2015, 06:36 AM
Hacked torrented versions will still be around. Just look at the time commodre 64 was popular. All the hacked and cracked games are the digital copies players use now.

kyodai
September 13th, 2015, 10:55 AM
Also look at what GOG does, they sell old games without any copy protection, so maybe Batman and other games will also end up on some retro reseller one day...

deathshadow
September 13th, 2015, 01:08 PM
Thing is, it's already happening -- just look at Win 10 -- which seems to recognize and block a lot of known cracks, particularly those for securom -- and then the OS itself BREAKS SECUROM.

Breaking the cracks for DRM AND THE DRM istelf? Yup, that's made of Win alright...

I have a new policy, and like the founding fathers it's based on the idea that there is nothing wrong with disobeying unjust laws. This rule is I will pay for any and all DRM free game releases, and henceforth if a game has DRM, I'm GOING to pirate it. Yes, that's right, I'm admitting it publicly -- if they put DRM on the game, I am going to pirate and suggest others do the same. They want us to vote with our wallets, I see no other way.

As it is, half the damned DRM'd releases I legally own require the crack to even run on modern hardware ANYWAYS... and let's be frank, Arkham Knight was the nail in the coffin of me pre-paying, much less paying for releases before I can try them.

Hence why GoG has gotten a decent hunk of change out of me the past two years... and if a game I'm interested in shows up on GoG, I'm there.

See the absolutely phenomenal Witcher 3. Like any modern game it had the lazy "let's have two dozen patches the first dozen days" between the game itself and video card driver issues -- but now that it's matured it has in some ways ruined other games for me since, well... it's that damned good! (of course I'm prejudiced as a fan of the novels BEFORE there even were games)

Or even some brilliant indie releases. Shame it's through steam, because "The Search for Ethan Carter" is a stunning example of indie's getting it when the studio's don't. The new "redux" release (free to existing owners) upgrading from Unreal Engine 3 to 4 being even more stunning in visuals, while retaining the creating use of storytelling that made it so interesting. (even if it is VERY short. I can speed play it in 20 minutes).

You also have another stunning example in games where the "primary focus" is multiplayer, then the multiplayer service goes away. See all the games stranded by the dissolution of "GameSpy". Personally I could give a flying purple fish about multiplayer gaming at this point -- Maybe I burned out too much on the original UT, but even when I play MMO's I prefer to solo and have guild and other multiplayer requests "blocked" -- I don't find "raids" to be fun, I don't find multiplayer to be fun since yelling at the screen "for **** sake clear my line of fire" gets a little tired after a while. I don't really understand how multiplayer gaming even remains a "thing" -- but to be fair I play games to get AWAY from people so I'm really not the target audience.

Arkham Origins for me was a giant let-down and the weakest of the games I tried so far -- much like City the remote batarang is uncontrollable without a game controller, and I can't use those tiny little rinky inaccurate pieces of crap that seem to be designed for the hands of a five year old. Admittedly, the last gamepads I liked were for the NES and SMS. It's a PC game, MAKE THE BLOODY PC CONTROLS WORK! Worse though was that it's basically the worst of old school lazy game design -- what passes for "story" seemed nonexistent compared to City or the absolutely BRILLIANT Asylum, and the entire thing boiled down to "endless horde of wimps" followed by "lather rinse, repeat boring as hell bosses that waste 15 to 20 minutes without advancing the story". In that way, Origins pissed all over the franchise for me.

Though not as bad as some other game series; see "Thief" -- the steaming pile of Ion Storm garbage known as deadly shadows should have killed the franchise entirely, and the painfully bad recent "relaunch" was less of a Thief game and more of a "how crappy a ripoff of Dishonored can we make" -- sad when Dishonored was so clearly inspired by the original Thief series.

BUT, that brings up another subject of older games -- the community of developers and enthusiasts who keep them alive! Thief:The Dark Project, Thief 2: The Metal Age, and System Shock 2 are all built on the "Dark Engine", and fans have been making new levels and expanded the games capabilities for over a decade and a half. Past couple years we've seen this go even further; first with DDFIX unlocking aspect correct widescreen resolutions and 32 bit colour depth (much less fixing shadow-casting bugs common to modern cards trying to run DX6 games), and now with "NewDark" giving us a properly fixed executable that removes pretty much any and all compatibility issues, opens up modern resolutions, etc, etc... you start mixing in the various "enhancement packs" that give you modern textures, higher poly models, etc, etc... and those old games look comparable to many modern AAA releases and with fan missions, are often WAY more entertaining. I'd stack "Saturnine's Rose Cottage", "Broken Triad" or "T2X" against 90% of the shlock of the past three years so far as gameplay and story are concerned -- and they look JUST FINE.

Though again, less so after "the wild hunt" has ruined all other games for me...

It's why the official sequels and relaunches for so many franchises are so disappointing as the fan efforts are often so much better. The studio's just slap the name on something trying to cash in on name recognition, and give a giant middle finger to fans of same.

See GTA 4 and 5, which as a fan of EVERY GTA from 1 through San Andreas, were unplayable unlikeable crap. I DO NOT get the appeal of GTA 5 at all since it is devoid of humor, devoid of anyone likable, relateable, much less COMPETANT amongst the cast. Oooh look, pretty graphics... of an ugly city... YAWN.

But at least we have Volition keeping the tradition alive, given that Saints Row III is MORE of a GTA game than GTA 4 and 5 COMBINED could ever offer... and Saints 4... utter and total complete bat**** NUTS... Volition has hit all the marks and rubbed all the same funny bones that Rockstar seems to have completely lost sight of with their "serious dark turn".

Alright, (wipes foam from corners of mouth) I'll stop ranting now.

Stone
September 13th, 2015, 01:30 PM
Hehehehe, I've taken a much simpler approach to the situation. If it doesn't play out-of-the-box without outside help of any kind (that includes an internet connection) I don't even read the description. It's just not something I want to get involved with.

GaryW536
September 16th, 2015, 05:48 AM
Hacked torrented versions will still be around. Just look at the time commodre 64 was popular. All the hacked and cracked games are the digital copies players use now.

We should not have to resort to illegal means to preserve them. Also, what if a particular game does not get hacked by anyone?
My wife calls me sad, but I am a purist. When I preserve a game I try to preserve the copy protection also. Some of the copy protection methods used, particularly on the older machines, are works of art in themselves. Crazy Balloons for the C64 is a great example. A copy of the original cassette lets you play the first level then it says "Up the junction Pirate!". How cool is that?

KC9UDX
September 16th, 2015, 07:12 AM
And I thought this was a thread about a dual diskette drive. :sad:

I don't know much of anything about Steam or the likes, but I reckon it's only a matter of time before someone figures out how to duplicate its behaviour.

ClassicHasClass
September 16th, 2015, 07:28 AM
How about Retro Gaming 2031 instead?

KC9UDX
September 16th, 2015, 07:31 AM
How about Retro Gaming 2031 instead?

Or Future Gaming 1540? :D

GaryW536
September 17th, 2015, 12:25 AM
And I thought this was a thread about a dual diskette drive. :sad:

I don't know much of anything about Steam or the likes, but I reckon it's only a matter of time before someone figures out how to duplicate its behaviour.

Neither did I until last week. I just thought Steam was a game store for downloadable content. I did not realise physical DVD based games were using Steam for copy protection purposes. Hence my horror!
I hope when Steam is dead and buried someone does replicate it.

Maverick1978
September 17th, 2015, 12:07 PM
Actually, Steam in and of itself, I rather like. It's convenient. No matter which PC I use, I can just download/install my game, and instantly all my save games are there and available. Nice!

However.... using Steam activation for disk-based protection? Absolutely horrid - especially for a guy like me who lacks internet service at home (I live in a rural area in the US, and am NOT paying ~$70 a month for landline+dialup)

facattack
September 27th, 2015, 05:56 AM
In the light of two of the oldest MMOs being bought from EA by an offshoot company named Broadsword (Ultima Online and Dark Age of Camelot), I was wondering the possibility of some company buying the rights to Windows 1.0 thru Windows Vista from Microsoft and renaming them....

Another speculation being the upcoming Zelda game will be on Wii U as promised as well as the NX console they are making. ... part of me wonders if Nintendo will branch out some games to other consoles and computer.

I have with me an issue Electronic Gaming Monthly issue 204 from June 2006 wildly anticipating "Revolution" which turned out to be Wii.

Grandcheapskate
August 14th, 2016, 07:01 PM
I also wonder what will happen years from now. I do not download games but rather buy the retail version. I have many games I have not yet opened. I have been burned a couple times after receiving a game only to see some type of requirement for online activation which is not listed in the "Requirements" section. I need to sell these off because I'll never open them.

One of the most bizarre communications I had was about the Platinum Edition of King's Bounty. After receiving the retail box, I saw it required online activation from the developer's website. When I question the publisher about it, they washed their hands of any DRM and referred me to the developer. The developer than told me to buy the game from GOG if I didn't want DRM (I'll bet the publisher loved that one). When I asked what will happen if the server is no longer active, they replied there is no guarantee the server will always be available. If it weren't true it would be funny.

The other absolutely ridiculous claim I heard is that Steam/Valve will release the keys for all games should the service go under. Of course they will. They will go under and out of the goodness of their heart they will not only pay to keep their server running but hang around long enough to make sure you can play your game in the future.

Here's another one. What happens if Steam no longer supports the OS and browser on your machine, but the machine is perfectly capable of running your games?

Unknown_K
August 15th, 2016, 12:23 AM
Another problem is even if your game still runs how much fun will it be without online servers to play head to head with?

When I first started gaming there was no head to head, all games were stand alone single player. DOOM and other FPS started the whole networking gaming thing for me and my friends and I had fun getting coax run all over the place so we could lug our machines out and play DOOM 2 or Quake over Novel Personal Netware.

Once the internet came around and got popular software companies allowed you to setup online servers to play with other people and some of the old games still work with that. Its been a while but I loved playing the original Tribes game online and Unreal Tournament facing worlds map wasted quite a bit of my time.

Companies started making you log into their servers to play (some costing you a monthly charge). Once those games lost paying users those servers shut down and unless somebody could get the code or hack a server setup those games are toast. I missed playing Age of Empires II on Microsofts "The Zone" servers when they went down, fortunately for me others have made clients to play online as I do most weekends.

This brings me to newer games where there is no single player gaming anymore. I loved Diablo I and II as standalone games but III turned into online only. StarCraft 2 made you have to have an internet connection just to play their stand alone game. DRM you can bypass with 3rd party cracks, but if the game is nothing but online content what can you do with it when those servers are gone for good?

To sum it up retro gaming in 2050 will be just playing what games have been released up to now in a virtual environment.

Even console games that used to be the little stepchild of computer gaming has turned into online gaming.

Grandcheapskate
September 24th, 2016, 05:08 PM
What happens if Steam no longer supports the OS and browser on your machine, but the machine is perfectly capable of running your games?

I posed this question over a month ago (and in other threads), yet have never seen an answer. Let's take a situation where you have games which run under Win XP, a machine running Win XP and a browser which allows you to use Steam today.

Then down the road Steam upgrades it's requirements to a minimum of Win7 (or above), a browser which will not work under Win XP, and hardware beyond your game machine's capability. Where does that leave you?

Steam would need to continue to support all operating systems and hardware configurations from the first day the service was started. That means supporting Win XP access forever and keeping it's requirements at the level when the service was first introduced. If they ever drop support for Win XP, all the retail Win XP games you have which require Steam will no longer function and/or be installable/activated.

Even if Steam lives until 2040, do you think Steam is really going to support every old OS and browser forever?

Hakameda
September 26th, 2016, 10:24 PM
There is cracked versions of games running on steam already, Like Rust and a host of others. Even if steam dies some of those games survive. depending on who plays them or there popularity. I play a game that officially died some time ago using its own game launcher, Star Wars Galaxies

Services like good old games will probably always be around, I play some Alpha Centuri from there and somebody made a custom launcher for playing old games over a fake lan client for other non-supported games, Classic AOE, Heroes 3 and so many others

CommanderCochrane
September 27th, 2016, 06:16 PM
IMO most of the issues with modern PC gaming would be fixed if devs stopped shafting us with ports that are either outsourced or are just straight PS4 to PC ports. They need to go back to making the game for PC, then scaling it back to a level that consoles can handle. This actually makes more sense than ever now that consoles are basically lower mid end x86 PC's. Back when the last generation of consoles came out, you needed SLI setups and multi thousand dollar machines to max out new PC games, I can't think of a single modern game that needs 2 Titan XP's to run maxed at 4k.

There's also the slight fact that pretty much every game ever made for a traditional monitor may be obsolete in the next decade thanks to VR. Were nearing the next technological revolution and historically speaking something's are always lost during those.

I still remember when I just wanted a CRT, a pair of shudder glass's, and a decent 3D capable soundcard....

deathshadow
September 28th, 2016, 11:43 PM
I can't think of a single modern game that needs 2 Titan XP's to run maxed at 4k.
Witcher 3... I've got a GTX 770 and it's iffy at "high" at 1080p... or was until I dropped a spare GT 740 in next to it as a dedicated CUDA/PHYSX assist. You want to run that at 4k on Ultra, you're eying a GTX 1080 minimum... well, unless you're one of those blind console-tards who can live with frame rates painfully below 30fps.

Though said game is GLORIOUS -- particularly given this year of shoddy retreads like the dreadfully boring Fallout 4 or the crappy late to PC ports of games that have utterly and completely lost their humor like GTA V. (Aka the second in the series to be a giant middle finger to early GTA fans... all of whom have fled to Volitions brilliant Saints Row series!)

... and Witcher 3 is available DRM-Free download the entire installer manually on GOG. ... and laughably not only more than made back what it cost to make, the two major DLC actually sold more copies than they did the game itself!!! Poor***'s who pirated the base game ended up buying the DLC! But sure, DRM is SO important to the industry.

Which is why as more and more games show up on GOG, I'm less and less worried about the topic of this thread... but again I have a "**** Steam right up their Valve" mentality when it comes to buying games. They've done EVERYTHING they can to alienate me...

Also why I'm thankful the handful of games I was DUMB ENOUGH to get through STEAM, now show up on my GOG account for download once I tied the two together... so now I can get DRM-free games STEAM makes you jump through the re-re hoops of fire for.

Though GOG SO wants to become STEAM, and still don't seem to understand that people who use GOG don't want that AT ALL. See the mouth-breathing idiotic "GOG Galaxy" client crap.

Grandcheapskate
September 29th, 2016, 08:16 AM
Also why I'm thankful the handful of games I was DUMB ENOUGH to get through STEAM, now show up on my GOG account for download once I tied the two together... so now I can get DRM-free games STEAM makes you jump through the re-re hoops of fire for.

Can you explain this further? Are you saying if you have a game requiring Steam (whether downloaded or purchased retail) you can somehow link your GOG and Steam accounts and then get the game via GOG without requiring Steam to install and/or activate?

I have neither a GOG or Steam account so my knowledge of how they work is non-existant.

Thanks...Joe

deathshadow
September 29th, 2016, 12:53 PM
Can you explain this further?
When you buy a game on Steam, you have to run their (crappy) client which downloads the game "for you". The game is locked down with DRM, and can only be run (without cracking) through their (idiotic inaccessible broken giant middle finger to usability) client software while logged in on your account. They even throw up warnings if you try to use a game you own on more than one machine at the same time (or even have it installed for that matter) -- and make you jump through verification and validation hoops online every time you setup or install for a new system.

When you buy a game on GOG, it is added to your library where you can freely download it whenever and wherever you want, DRM/copy protection-free. Whilst they have a (gimboid halfwit) client called GOG Galaxy for the (mouth-breathing) folks who can't handle a browser download for every game, its use is entirely optional.

Recently GOG added the ability to log into your STEAM account from GOG, and if you have purchased a game on STEAM that also exists in GOG's library, they consider you an owner and let you download from GOG the game as if you bought it from GOG.

So for example if (like an idiot) you bought Witcher: Enhanced Edition (the final version of the first game) and Witcher 2:Assassins of Kings on STEAM ages ago, you can log into your GOG account, give GOG access to your steam account, and download it DRM-Free via GOG as if you bought it through GOG. Any of your Steam library games that are now on GOG, can be grabbed from GOG instead as if you bought it from them.

Whilst laughably and pathetically, the STEAM version still has the STEAM DRM on it; just another reason to tell Steam to flush-off.

Of course, GOG goes the extra mile applying many fixes -- even community patches -- to the games on their service to make sure compatibility remains high... to the point that with old DOS games they even give you a preconfigured copy of DOSBox to run them in. The Dark Engine games (Thief Gold, Thief 2, System Shock 2) all come with the "newDark" replacement executable -- despite its dubious legality -- opening up modern resolutions, colour depths, texture blending, effects, and aspect ratios.

They go that extra mile on old games to make them work on new OS. There's a reason GOG is slowly bleeding my wallet dry...

SpidersWeb
September 29th, 2016, 01:58 PM
What happens in another 25 years or so when Steam either no longer exists or no longer supports this old game? Where does that leave it? Will it be lost forever alongside 100's of other great titles which also require an online service to function? All that digital art and creativity wasted!

I will play (hopefully most) of them same way I play protected games from the 1980's where the floppy disk has gone bad or the manual has been lost.

With the older games I own, I almost never use the original media or copyright protection schemes anyway (e.g. that red code sheet with SimCity, or the pirate wheel etc etc) - much more convenient to use a modified version or rebuy it many many years later on GOG for a small price with the DRM taken out.

Agent Orange
September 29th, 2016, 08:26 PM
... and Witcher 3 is available DRM-Free download the entire installer manually on GOG. ...

What a coincidence. As I was reading this thread, I was also downloading Witcher 3 from GOG (manually). I have a 1080 so we'll see how it goes balls-to-the-walls. I have a 27" IPS that can push it around at 100 Hz+ @ 25601440.

deathshadow
September 30th, 2016, 12:03 AM
What a coincidence. As I was reading this thread, I was also downloading Witcher 3 from GOG (manually). I have a 1080 so we'll see how it goes balls-to-the-walls. I have a 27" IPS that can push it around at 100 Hz+ @ 25601440.

Enjoy, it's the game that set the new bar that nothing else even approaches; there's a reason Fallout 4 felt lazy and like Bethesda was pedaling backwards. Witcher 3 is without a doubt the BEST game I've ever played. Nothing else even comes close. CD Projekt Red didn't just knock it out of the park, they sent that sucker into orbit.

Though I may be prejudiced, having been a fan of the books from before there were games... Something about seeing old friends as it were... Zoltan, Dandelion, Triss, Yen, Detlaff... Kind of wish they had worked Yarpen in apart from the occasional mention.

Be warned, if you're a fan of the series -- or even if you aren't, there's a spot in the game where you'll think it's the endgame -- you're only about a third of the way through; in any other game it would be the end and you'd be happy with that and felt like you got your money's worth -- you're not even close to done... Either way without giving away too much it's a bit of a gut-jerker; not a dry floor in the house. Kicks you right in the daddy-bags. Ouch, Ouch, the feels.

To put it in Star Trek terms, "The ship... out of danger?"

With a single 1080, you probably won't even approach that 100hz... 69-70 is about the limit at "very high" settings with hairworks on medium. Even so anything over 60 is gravy really given that's twice what film gets away with. (and why anything faster than 60 is pretty much placebo marketing BS akin to the nonsense FLAC-tards buy into)

Oh, and if it crashes out/locks up when you talk to the Bloody Baron (fun guy, about 10-30% of the way into the game depending on the order you do things in), set Hairworks to "Geralt only". Problem seems to only hit keppler and 10xx owners, and they've still not fixed it. Only "major" bug still remaining in the game.

... and given the shades of grey that make up the world of the Witcher, be prepared for an "attack of the moral fuzzies". Sometimes there just is no right answer.

"Evil is evil. Lesser, greater, middling, it's all the same. Proportions are negotiated, boundaries blurred. I’m not a pious hermit. I haven't done only good in my life. But if I'm to choose between one evil and another, then I prefer not to choose at all."

-- edit -- also, romance both Triss and Yen. TRUST ME, it's worth it. :p

KC9UDX
September 30th, 2016, 12:52 AM
I think I'll stick to DUNGEADVANCEDAGONS.

Which, incidentally, I think since playing it last night all the way through for the first time since 1994, I can say I like it for the first time ever.

Grandcheapskate
September 30th, 2016, 08:35 AM
Recently GOG added the ability to log into your STEAM account from GOG, and if you have purchased a game on STEAM that also exists in GOG's library, they consider you an owner and let you download from GOG the game as if you bought it from GOG.

So for example if (like an idiot) you bought Witcher: Enhanced Edition (the final version of the first game) and Witcher 2:Assassins of Kings on STEAM ages ago, you can log into your GOG account, give GOG access to your steam account, and download it DRM-Free via GOG as if you bought it through GOG. Any of your Steam library games that are now on GOG, can be grabbed from GOG instead as if you bought it from them.

Whilst laughably and pathetically, the STEAM version still has the STEAM DRM on it; just another reason to tell Steam to flush-off.



What if you purchase a game retail (physical CD/DVD) and find out it requires Steam to install/activate?

If you go through the Steam process and install/update, I'm guessing it gets added to your Steam library. Would it then be the same as if you had purchased it via Steam? And therefore if the game is on GOG (and you link accounts) you could download a DRM free version?

Or does this only work with games purchased and downloaded via Steam?

If I could get DRM free versions of games I have purchased retail which require Steam (games I bought in error because I was not aware of the Steam requirement), that would be great. Right now every one of these Steam games remains unopened and will eventually be sold off because I will not be beholden to Steam.

Thanks...Joe

Grandcheapskate
October 5th, 2016, 03:28 PM
Just an FYI. I wrote to GOG asking about "linked accounts" and here is the reply I received.

Hello,

You probably read about our GOG Connect program. It does indeed give you a DRM free version of a game you have on Steam, but we only have specific games participate in the program, and for limited time. For further information and an FAQ, please visit the GOG Connect page: https://www.gog.com/connect

Mewtwo
October 13th, 2016, 07:00 PM
I thinks the games and graphics will develop into a new level, so, I am looking forward to the future. As for the old ones, maybe just lie in my collection cabinets.

MrArgent
October 15th, 2016, 10:46 AM
On the arcade end of things, i'm kinda concerned bit rot and drive failure will be a huge issue for HDD-based platforms... Especially older ones like Sega's Lindbergh hardware or Taito Corp.'s type X system (though newer releases used SSDs, iirc).

Angelica Twork
February 8th, 2017, 04:17 AM
hi
Yest that's true you can play really old games online and you can still enojoy it. I belive in 25 years time there will be console without pads controller, there will be like like kinect, but just glasses and that it. there are lots of website with old games and call of duty, resident evil will be on those websites one day as well. It's really nice to play old stuff from time to time.

Mad-Mike
February 22nd, 2017, 07:55 AM
Well, I know SOME of that DRM stuff is just a ruse or not really tied into the actual program of STEAM itself. After all my craziness, I'm confident I'll be paying Retro City and Freddy Fazbear and his friend's a visit as an old man (if I live that long). I have shifted them amongst machines without issue before.

I just hit this problem a month ago trying to play POSTAL, I bought POSTAL 1 & 2 AW7 through Softwrap back in the mid 2000's (anyone remember that shithole of a distribution platform?), wound up just resorting to a few nefarious tricks I used to use involving the Demos and the Executables when Softwrap's unlock scheme would fail (which was pretty often, I remember a few Ragey moments getting their shit to work).

TBH, all this crap is a part of why I like my retro-games more than modern stuff. I can plop all the files for The Secret of Monkey Island VGA edition on a network share, and copy it over. I can put all the Ultima games in a folder and drag and drop em' onto my 486 with reckless abandon - then all that's left is running the setup programs for mouse, sound, and whatever else. I spend more time fussing with installs on my modern machine with any piece of software than I ever do installing off a pile of floppies on an antiquated 32-bit x86 pre-Pentium CPU based machine running a version of Windows that's factually advertised as what it is - a graphical shell for MS-DOS.

Trixter
February 22nd, 2017, 11:36 AM
What happens in another 25 years or so when Steam either no longer exists or no longer supports this old game? Where does that leave it? Will it be lost forever alongside 100's of other great titles which also require an online service to function? All that digital art and creativity wasted!

So there's a few things going on here. You are right to worry that one company's DRM is a problem, especially if that company has no provisions for unlocking the DRM upon their demise. You should be wary of this in every digital asset you lease (and it is a lease, not a purchase -- even buying software in the 70s and 80s wasn't a purchase, it was a license to USE the software). This has been a concern in other forms of media as well; for example, think of all the early films of the 1900s that are long gone because they couldn't be owned, only rented (with the price of a movie ticket).

That said, Steam is 70% of the PC gaming market's downloads (http://venturebeat.com/2017/02/13/valve-wont-manually-curate-steam-because-it-dominates-pc-gaming/), has a virtual monopoly on it, and is making money hand over fist. I would be utterly shocked if they were gone in 25 years. In fact, the only way I could see that happening is if gaming itself could no longer be monetized. So while you are correct to worry, Steam is on of the last things I would worry about. If it helps, they did at one point state, in writing, that the DRM would be unlocked for game licenses they personally own (ie. Half-Life, Counter-Strike, Left 4 Dead, etc.) were they to dissolve.

(Steam is making so many billions (not a typo! billions!) every year that every time someone asks them to make Half-Life 3 they just laugh because it would be a gigantic waste of their time, and would actually lose money because it would take support resources away from their storefront. That's the real reason we will never see Half-Life 3.)

KC9UDX
February 22nd, 2017, 01:05 PM
I wouldn't be shocked at all if they were gone in 25 years. Nothing's that certain anymore.

But, having 70% of the market virtually ensures that their method will be cracked. Hopefully it's after their demise so they don't have to change it multiple times.

israelperry
July 3rd, 2017, 05:18 AM
I just love playing Retro games.

Mad-Mike
July 16th, 2017, 02:25 PM
Or Future Gaming 1540? :D

Was that when that pirate was hung in Barbados?

TBH, I've just sort of accepted copy protection is there. Funny enough, there are some games that bluff it over steap - Five Nights at Freddy's is like that - I pretty much moved the executable over to an older machine to play hardware requirement limbo with it. Started at the lowest (486) I could think of - acgually got to the title screen before it complained my PC did not meet the requirements (Win95, too old DirectX version - etc).

The games with DRM/Copy Protection I don't like are those like GTA San Andreas and The Sims 2/3/4 that need all these cracked executables in order to run them without the Cd-ROM - I don't need a CD-ROM to run Diablo on the 486 (I have CD images for that) - but for some stupid reason I need one to run The Sims 3.

I like being able to play my stuff auntonomously without an internet connection, without needing to stick the install media into the PC. One of the best forms of copy protection I ever saw was Monkey Island - just a simple code-wheel, with a sense of humor, that's all. And it was not easy to accuratley copy. Or the manuals to Ultima are another great one, it actually made the experience even more immersive, and there was an incentive to take breaks and read the beastiary or the history of Brittannia.

SeanRamey
August 23rd, 2017, 06:05 PM
Hell, I ain't worried a bit. Personally, I think Steam will actually continue to support the games for the foreseeable next 25 years. It shouldn't be hard to keep releasing older versions of steam that they've already made that are compatible with the OS or system you are using, and their steam servers. They can make newer versions of Steam with new features, but just leave these features out for the older versions. All Steam has to do is be able to connect and download games from the Steam servers.

In the case that Valve shuts down Steam, it shouldn't be very long before somebody finds a really good way to crack the steam_api.dll that the games rely on to communicate with Steam, and it's already becoming the known way to crack Steam games actually. Ideally, somebody could reverse engineer this library and allow all Steam games to work flawlessly. It's pretty nice actually that all these games have the same DRM, because this allows all of them to be cracked more easily. As for the multiplayer games, well, that's more complicated, but not impossible. See, BF2's current online community has figured out a way to host their own servers and still keep playing BF2 online without Gamespy or EA's servers.