Cindy (cindyanne1) wrote,

Spore and DRM?

I was thinking about buying Spore for my oldest son. With the creatures and the evolution, etc. it seems to be something he would really enjoy. However, I read these reviews on and now I'm a bit concerned:

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7,216 of 7,834 people found the following review helpful:
Dumbed down experience and draconian DRM, September 7, 2008
By Erich Maria Remarque (Magnolia, Arkansas USA) - See all my reviews

See those older 5-star reviews from 2006 (two years before the game was released)? Well, they had a reason to be excited. Spore was supposed to be a revolutionary experience, combining multiple genres while concentrating on evolution and genetics.

Fast forward two years and here we have the finished product, ready to be installed on our hard drives.

First of all, the game incorporates a draconian DRM system that requires you to activate over the internet, and limits you to a grand total of 3 activations. If you reach that limit, then you'll have to call EA in order to add one extra activation. That's not as simple as it sounds, since when you reach that point EA will assume that you, the paying customer, are a filthy pirating thief. You will need to provide proof of purchase, reasons why the limit was reached, etc, etc (it has all happened before with another recent EA product, Mass Effect). EA, of course, is not obligated to grant you that extra activation or even provide that service. In a couple of years they might very well even shut down the general activation servers, because "it's not financially feasible" to keep them running. What you will be left with is a nice, colorful $50 coaster. And you will be required to pay for another copy/license if you want to continue playing.

This basically means that you are actually RENTING the game, instead of owning it. The game WILL stop to function in the future. That's inevitable, because even if EA keeps the activation servers going, there IS going to be a time when EA will simply cease to exist because of financial issues or federal laws (like most businesses eventually do).

Second, the game was dumbed down to oblivion. Evolution doesn't even matter anymore. For example, you can add as many legs to a creature as you want, but the multi-legged creature won't be any faster than a single-legged one with higher leg stats. This gameplay element makes "creating" your creatures entirely pointless (cosmetic only, because everything is based on stats), and brings you about the same amount of excitement as dressing up a plastic doll. Comments (226) | Permalink | Was this review helpful to you? (Report this)

2,648 of 3,053 people found the following review helpful:
No Way, No How, No DRM, September 7, 2008
By Tbear (Pittsburgh, PA) - See all my reviews

I just got through a massive headache dealing with DRM for Adobe Photoshop CS3. I've dealt with massive headaches from DRM from Civ3 gold. All of this is on a very high end vista PC. Thanks, but no thanks. I was excited about the concept of this game for many months. That is until I found out about the DRM it uses. I will not buy software with DRM ever again, particularly if they limit the installs to something ridiculous like 3.

Update (9/12/08): I just learned that EA limits purchasers to one account per household even though the manual states that multiple accounts may be used per installation. What does that mean? Well, say you have 4 people in your house that want to play spore on 4 different accounts. No problem, according to EA games, just pony up $200 for 4 licenses. Comments (19) | Permalink | Was this review helpful to you? (Report this)

1,827 of 2,172 people found the following review helpful:
A shame, September 7, 2008
By Christian Sandovall (KETTEING, OH United States) - See all my reviews

Currently I rate this game bad been following and think the game itself looks like it has great potential. Here is why I rate so low.

1. Ability to play the only way for me to access the Demos or whatever you want to call them is to lower my security settings on my system. Here is my issue with this I did that for Mass Effect giving the benefit of the doubt after it crashed my computer and left files I couldn't remove it was easier to wipe my system and lose everything. To me that seems like Malware.
2. 3 Activation limit I upgrade computers and have several of them at my house I just cut down to 4 and am looking to buy another by this My game will be useles before long. I play baldurs gate the original and fallout still these are some of my favorites. Ive reloaded numerous times I fail to see how this helps fight piracy also. If I own a copy of a game Im allowed a backup copy and I belive Im also allowed to get that game as a rom even and play on an emulator. How does 3 activations limit pirating if I pirated an ran out of three activations Id just pirate another This is more of a resell to paying customers package.

3. EA's buisness practices with there security. They dont label it on there packaging nor put a disclaimer that this Sofware will harm your system and bypass your admin rights to your computer. Also Ive heard not sure but gamers tried a petition to ask EA not to put this DRM on game those people were temporarily banned from the forums and those petitions were deleted not a very customer friendly concept.


1. The concept of the game I love these types of games and this is the most indept game Ive seen. I think if the game works right it would provide hours of play

2. The graphics are outstanding

3. One DRM feature was taken away which is the ten day actiavtion by internet which is great being military we dont see internet in all our locations so this is a nice step in the right direction to not alienate those that are away from the comfort of home.

After all is said and done I currently give the game one star for its inability to be played if EA takes a more customer friendly approach and I have no fears of crashing my system then I will boost my rating to reflect improvements but fo now it stays a 1 Comments (17) | Permalink | Was this review helpful to you? (Report this)


What the heck are these reviews talking about? Does it apply to all gameplay or only online play? Because if all of the issues are with online play, then it's not a big deal, but if it's for regular play then it totally sounds like a rip-off.


Tags: other games besides the sims, real life, spore
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