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    EA: "DRM is a failed dead-end strategy"


    Freddyeddy

    EA Labels president Frank Gibeau responds to "conspiracy theories" about SimCity and puts his foot down when it comes to DRM.

    The recent launch of SimCity was a troubled one for Electronic Arts, as the company struggled to get its servers fully functional. Ordinarily, this wouldn't be good for any game's launch, but when a title is designed to be always online, and countless players therefore can't even play the game they just purchased, the situation quickly escalates. EA moved as fast as it could to rectify the situation, but some players felt EA's real intent was to force DRM on its customers. Maxis head Lucy Bradshaw's blog post seemed to only stir the pot, but EA Labels president Frank Gibeau now insists that DRM had absolutely nothing to do with the game's design whatsoever.

    Speaking to GamesIndustry International at GDC this week, Gibeau commented, "That's not the reality; I was involved in all the meetings. DRM was never even brought up once. You don't build an MMO because you're thinking of DRM - you're building a massively multiplayer experience, that's what you're building."

    Not only was DRM not a topic of internal discussion at EA, Gibeau said, but the executive also made it very clear that DRM is simply not an option for publishers anymore.

    "DRM is a failed dead-end strategy; it's not a viable strategy for the gaming business. So what we tried to do creatively is build an online service in the SimCity universe and that's what we sought to achieve. For the folks who have conspiracy theories about evil suits at EA forcing DRM down the throats of Maxis, that's not the case at all," he said with a laugh.

    For EA and Maxis, Gibeau said it really was a case of building a completely connected world with an MMO-like infrastructure.

    "At no point in time did anybody say 'you must make this online'. It was the creative people on the team that thought it was best to create a multiplayer collaborative experience"

    Frank Gibeau

    Source: http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2013-03-27-ea-drm-is-a-failed-dead-end-strategy

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    cirugo

    Posted

    and their "vision" failed miserably.

    code an offline mode so you can start fixing this train wreck.

     

    prove it's not about DRM...modders already proved it doesn't need the internet connection to play.

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    Mr. Flibble

    Posted

    Just like a politician claiming that they're through raising taxes. They'll just invent fees instead.

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    lazy tiger

    Posted

    "at no point did anyone say 'you must make this online'"

     

    am i missing something here, or the president of EA explicitly stated all games coming from EA must have an online component or be MMO...also, hasn't the "online" requirement been with us since the first time we heard the news of a new Simcity? A requirement endorsed by EA, Maxis, Lucy Bradshaw, Ocean, etc...??? Now EA is saying its a failed strategy and we never really wanted the online component to begin with...so why waste millions and your reputation to do this? Sleaze.

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    jbbry232

    Posted

    perhaps they are attempting to  shift blame to maxis.

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    Mithrik

    Posted

    Now EA is saying its a failed strategy and we never really wanted the online component to begin with...so why waste millions and your reputation to do this?

    From where I see it, they are trying to pass the online elements of the new SimCity like if they were an integral part of it because the game is classified, according to them, as an MMO.

     

    That's a nice way to get away with it, really, but given that nobody trusts EA anymore, well, you know.

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    arcology

    Posted

    They have shifted their reasons too many times, at this point.  Nobody cares anymore.  All they want to know is whether or not they will take it offline, which they seem to still refuse to do. 

     

    I think it does have to do with their wanting to keep control of the modding aspect and make as much off of their DLC as possible. 

     

    They see what a missed opportunity they had with SC4 still going strong and think they can make money and stop people from taking that away from them. 

     

    Why else would they ban people from even talking about mods on their official forums - when at first they promised there would be modding capabilities down the line?

     

    Modding has been around since the beginning of the simcity/sims series - it has been such a huge part of the players' experience and for them to take it all away - you have to wonder why?

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    NCGAIO

    Posted

    It can only be funny to find ...
     
    Do you by chance remember when EA. announced the launch of MMO Simcity last year? Not?
     
    Remember hearing about Simcity MMO at E3 or GDC? Not?
     
    Rest assured it is not the fault of your memory! .... is only PR way to try to mitigate the fact that the term DRM be on the agenda of the failed launch, and drawing attention from various communities of rights and midia about economics.
     
    So someone had this stupid idea means to say that scarcely communicated the fact the game is an MMO as Mrs. Lucy said on March 15
     
    "The game we launched is only the beginning for us - it's not the end and it never will be. Many ways In, we built an MMO."
     
    Certain executives should stay away from Media or at least re-read what they said in the past, not to fall into the ridiculous to contradict themselves publicly.

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    frdrcklim

    Posted

    5 times. That's how many times he said MMO. 6 times if how many times the word was mentioned in the article. Not once did he described SimCity as a city-building game.

     

    Of course you don't demand an offline mode for an MMO, but SimCity was never an MMO to begin with.

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    simMayor84

    Posted

    keep digging that hole ea. at this rate youll be in china in approximately 2-3 more lies.

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    djcool345

    Posted

    ...this...this one is just plain insulting. My intelligence is offended. 

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    Mr_Maison

    Posted

    Seems like Maxis just got thrown under the bus. What I just read is that Maxis had full control of the game design and EA never demanded them to make it an MMO. It was Maxis idea not EA. In other words, Maxis could of made an offline game to continue the series if they wanted and EA would of went along with it. Maxis also admitted to having full control over the direction and game design. So should Maxis be getting more heat or what? I see many people saying things like Maxis is some kind of victim in this by evil EA.

     

    Edit: Ok, Maxis and EA are married so we can look at one company. Its not nice to throw your wife under the bus.

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    Feldshan

    Posted

    Ok, so the story is that now EA is going to release every game as a MMO so that they can still have the same stuff with DRM, but just under a different name?

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    eburress

    Posted

    I happen to believe him.  As I've said before, I believe that 95% of this debacle is Maxis' fault.  This was their vision for the series, all the way back before they launched SImCity 3.  

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    dryer-lint

    Posted

    EA President Frank Gibeua then went on to detail how Maxis is responsible for the holocause, Russia's great purge, the radicalization of the Muslim world, 9-11, and the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

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    moaku

    Posted

    Unless they provide an offline patch to prove those statements, this is just a bunch of more and more lies... since when Simcity is an MMO?

    Unless "Massively" suddenly means "max 16" ;)

     

    " you don't always know what the customer is going to want."

    <-- Cmon... There was mass bashing about it and massive request for an offline solo mode since the day they announced the game as "online only"... You really think we are so credule ? We may have been more forgiving with this game if it was decently priced... something like 29$ and 39 for deluxe edition. At this price, there is NO excuse and no way to forgive all your mistakes.

     

    " Gibeau believes that part of the problem is the entire situation snowballed when the media started covering it."

    So... it's maxis and media fault if players felt insulted with this game... What tiny balls Gibeau have... That's a shame !

     

    Well, at least he levelled the plane... Now it's not only Lucy Bradshaw who is the official marketting liar about the game :)

     

    In short words... Offline patch or that's just a bunch of more lies.

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    Sandis_van_Great

    Posted

    Actually i belive that its not all EA's fault, that Maxis have their hands in it also.

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    moaku

    Posted

    dze: They both have bloody hands on that point... But seing the context with other EA games, I'd say EA are more to blame than Simcity.

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    moaku

    Posted

    err, than maxis, sorry... Mental typo :P

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    mk11232

    Posted

    Unless they provide an offline patch to prove those statements, this is just a bunch of more and more lies... since when Simcity is an MMO?

    Unless "Massively" suddenly means "max 16" ;)

    It was known as an MMO after the terrible launch and disabling of all the online features (kinda prerequisite for the O part and M's but I digress) when Bradshaw was frantically trying to quietly shift discussion of the failed DRM strategy. That's the straw they grasped not realizing anyone can lookup when the shift first occurred   Though EA has issues with the truth, they'll catch fire and stock will decline if they ever tell it once. 

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