Customer Review

17 of 26 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Defective by design, February 14, 2010
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Borderlands - PC (DVD-ROM)
Played at a friend's house for an hour or so and thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the screen tearing and poor menu options(no setting for buffering? o.O). I was all set to click the "Add to Cart" button when I started reading the reviews...

There be DRM here folks. A particularly nasty strain of SecuROM... Looks like they are trying to give Starforce a run for their money.

DRM doesn't stop piracy, it only inconveniences paying customers... (Won't be inconveniencing me as I won't be buying it!)

Do yourself a favor and take a pass on this one. Or if you absolutely must have it, RENT IT for Xbox.

PS-There should be a Hippocratic oath in the programming field to prevent things like this DRM...if you know someone who works for a company like SecuROM, have an intervention and get them counseling.
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Tracked by 1 customer

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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 24, 2010 8:26:49 AM PST
P. M. Bego says:
Thanks, agree with your comments 100%. Actually, I've already bought this on X360 and enjoyed it, but I really prefer FPSs on a PC, so I was thinking of buying this again for PC. Yes, the manufacturer may have gotten 2 sales for one legitimate customer (I've occasionally bought some of my favorite games, like Oblivion and Bioshock, on multiple platforms)

But I draw the line at abusive DRM schemes like this. (which is why I did NOT buy Bioshock for PC at the time.)

These companies need to learn that they do LOSE sales (and a lot of gamer loyalty) when they put abusive DRM on your PC.

Anyway, are you sure this is the BAD SecureROM that permanantly affects your system, or is it the "milder" one that just verifies that the DVD is in a drive and "supposedly" doesn't leave any negative effects on your system?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 25, 2010 6:58:13 PM PST
H. Le says:
P. M. Bego,

If you consider SecuROM with mandatory limited online activation is "BAD"...

And the SecuROM disc check type with NO mandatory limited online activation is "milder"...

Then Borderlands' SecuROM with mandatory - but unlimited - online activation would be considered... 'Mildly Bad'.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 25, 2010 7:25:27 PM PST
P. M. Bego says:
The truth is I don't fully understand all the different varieties of SecuROM and how "bad" each variety is, but from what I understand, your assessment of "mildly bad" is probably correct.

The point is I buy my games and I'm willing to pay $40-60, or in some cases $100 or more for special editions, in addition to what I invest in the systems to play them. I spend a lot of time working with computers, both for entertainment and mostly for work, and I don't see why I have to become an expert in DRM schemes and how hazardous and intrusive each one is, when I'm the one buying the product.

I'm referring to really really evil things like Starforce that existed in the past (and of course those mechanisms still exist out there). Systems that put a "rootkit"-level hack into your system that placed a secret driver layer between you and your own hardware (CD-ROM) drivers. Systems that allowed back-door hacks to your system security, and were almost impossible to remove cleanly without a complete system wipe and reinstall. This was the case even if you chose to uninstall the offending game that you'd bought -- the system violations remained. It got to the point where there were some games I wanted to play, but had to dedicate an old system, stickered "Warning -- corrupted by Starforce" on it. I could have also added "Thanks, UBISoft," because they were one of the largest spreaders of this trash.

So as a long answer, no, I don't know what variety of "bad" this SecurROM is, but I don't feel I should need to spend the time to figure out how bad it is, and how much I have to "quarantine" my potentially-corrupted system, all because I installed a new game I just purchased.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 27, 2010 2:45:38 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 27, 2010 3:05:25 PM PST
H. Le says:
P. M. Bego,

Thanks for the reply. I am a long time anti-DRM Customers - especially concerning the harsh but useless type of DRM. As amatter of fact, I already had my own negative experiences with DRM - including StarForce and SecuROM. In addition, I also build PC for myself and occasionally for friends and family. Thus, I agree with you totally. Well, may be except one thing: Although I agree that it is not up to the Customers to become experts on DRM schemes, I believe that as informed Customers, we should take the time to obtain some basic info and Customers feedback on the DRM schemes employed by publishers to restrict Customers' rights - whether it is StarForce, SecuROM, Tages, Steam, or GFWL [yes, Steam and GFWL can be used as DRM - although they claim to be non-DRM) - before buying any video game.

As is, I do not claim to be a DRM expert and never have, but I do know when something is amiss - especially regarding publishers' claim that DRM is a mean to combat piracy -- Even though circumstantial evidences show that it is a mean to restrict Customers' rights - with piracy as a pretext.

As for my own take on SecuROM, although almost every type of DRM install drivers on your PC, I don't think it is too hard to see the SecuROM version with mandatory limited online activation is "BAD" for a very simple and logical reason: In order to monitor your PC for every software processes AND every hardware changes, the driver(s) has to be buried deeply - perhaps as deep as ring 0 as alleged by the lawsuits. Therefore, it is amusing to see that even one of SecuROM's competitor itself, Tages, suggests that SecuROM with mandatory limited activation actually uses rootkit technology.

In conclusion, although I am anti-DRM in general, I realize that not all DRM schemes are equal. Although there is no such thing as a good DRM - except for a removed DRM :-) - I do find some more acceptable than others. Hence, the impromptu classification of what is 'mild' or 'bad - which actually help me to determine the value of the product as a whole - not just the game itself. Consequently, it also determines how much and from whom I will buy a DRM'ed game. In the case of Borderlands, because the product is not totally worthless, I paid $24.99 for the game USED from a market vendor - just to be sure the publisher see as less of my money as possible. At any rate, I'm glad we agree on the basic principle concerning DRM. For what it's worth, Happy Gaming.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 12, 2010 7:59:57 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 12, 2010 8:02:23 PM PST
G. Parnell says:
I agree. I often "hurt" my computer as I constantly try new Freeware and Shareware. I'm also constantly upgrading and swapping hardware around as I try to keep every family members' PC functioning. This means that I often have to reinstall Windows or call Microsoft and reactivate Windows. Often it is nauseating to keep protected software running on my machine. It ain't just games, ya know. My Adobe CS3 at home is such a hassle that I currently don't even have it installed! And my Photoshop and Acrobat at work have shut down the internet connection on my W7 64 bit machine! Can you say "Bonjour?" Google it and see if I'm joking.

This is the case with several video games I own. Even my virus protection (PrevX) flags me after 3 reinstalls, and I've kept the same license for years and for multiple computers! It has become very ugly. I find myself playing video games less and less, to the point where I seldom even look for titles anymore. Time to dig out "Morrowind" I guess. At least that's just a simple disc check. Mine's in perfect condition...
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