Customer Review

228 of 235 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great game, and well worth the price. BEWARE THE DRM., January 11, 2012
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= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dragon Age Origins: Ultimate Edition - PC (DVD-ROM)
Just bought Dragon Age Origins (ultimate edition). After putting about 12 hours into it, I can truly say that it's a wonderful game in the tradition of Bioware's Knights of The Old Republic, Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights; set in a new universe with dark fantasy and truly epic battles I haven't seen the like of since Peter Jackson's Return of The King. I'm not going to go into too much detail though, because there are many quality reviews here on Amazon and elsewhere on the internet. I want to share more the buying and installing experience.

First of all, there is no downside to paying an extra $10 and getting the "Ultimate Edition" Versus the standard "Origins". The Downloadable Content packs (7 packs) that are included in the ultimate edition cost about $15 a piece separately, so they are well worth it in the bundle. The DLCs themselves fit seamlessly for the most part into the main story, and add a great deal of adventure and added playtime to the story. Go for the Ultimate Edition by all means.

Installing... The DVD-disk physical copy version has two disks, both of which come in the box. They automatically patch the game up to 1.04 is it installs (the latest version), and install very easily and flawlessly. However, the DRM (Digital Rights Management, anti-piracy measures) is a nightmare. A NIGHTMARE.

As I read the terms of service (yes, I sometimes do that), I actually contemplated sending the game back. It was that bad. The choicest bit of it comes to mind: "You agree that a breach of this License (disable the DRM, make a video for YouTube using the game, use a No-CD crack, etc) will cause irreparable injury to EA for which monetary damages would not be an adequate remedy and EA shall be entitled to seek equitable relief in addition to any remedies it may have hereunder or at law without a bond, other security or proof of damages".

Translation? If you do anything they don't like AT ALL, no amount of money or apologies is enough to fix the "irreparable injury" you cause to their $3 BILLION dollar-a-year company. They will have to put you in jail to ease the pain. So anyway...

Firstly, it uses two serial numbers: One for the main game, and one for the DLCs. You get three installs per serial number. The DLC serial code is expired as of 2009, luckily I didn't have any problems with it. Secondly, you are required to sign up for an EA/Bioware account to use the serial number for the DLCs. If you do this, you also must be logged on to the internet when you start the game. Thirdly, they use a disk-check (SecureROM) every time you start the game. Fourthly, the game collects info on your gameplay and PC. Goodbye privacy, because this game phones home like a momma's boy.

Lastly, ANY CHANGE to your system invalidates one of your three installs. Get a new computer, upgrade you RAM in your current one, put in a new cooling fan, replace the hard drive, buy a new graphics card... Any of these things invalidates one of your three installs. If you run out of installs, you have to buy a new game. So good luck playing it five years down the road.

In summary: It's a great game, but Electronic Arts (EA) is a horrible company with draconian DRM practices. This is the first game that I have bought from them since they started using DRM, and I almost didn't. I probably won't again. The companies punish honest gamers, because it is much easier to steal these games than buy and install them legitimately.
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Comments

Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 16 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 4, 2012 5:04:26 PM PST
David Munk says:
My understanding of how the DRM works is that you get unlimited installs for personal use, and three installs for family and friends. EA and Origin are bad, but they're not that evil.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 20, 2012 4:56:19 AM PST
Ibarra'i says:
What is the difference between "personal use" and "family and friends"???

Posted on May 28, 2012 11:38:19 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 28, 2012 11:39:03 AM PDT
Skinchanger2 says:
I actually bought the game, wasted my time and worked my butt off to download the other content, which I could not because it would not recognize the serial, and after about one hour I finally realized I had better things to do than these stupid exercises, so uninstalled the game, put it back in the case, and resold it on amazon. I agree with you about EA. I had no idea about all the stuff you mentioned. These people are ridiculous. I also think that while it's a good game, it can't hold a candle to Neverwinter Nights....in DAO the combat is much more shallow and simplistic and most characters are really boring. I am currently playing Hordes of the Underdark and it's dozens of times better in my opinion. DAO has really easy and dumb bosses, not so in NWN, a true classic

In reply to an earlier post on May 28, 2012 11:40:59 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 28, 2012 11:41:30 AM PDT
Skinchanger2 says:
Ibarra, for example, you don't lend your toothbrush to your friends. Also, you are not them, unless you hear voices in your head etc. Hope that helps

Posted on Jun 8, 2012 1:40:37 AM PDT
Dj Chiszle says:
smh i almost spent $15 (which is cheap) on this game but your review changed my mind! thank you

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 8, 2012 2:05:22 PM PDT
Talus says:
It's a great game, I just wish they did things better with the DRM and downloadable content.

Posted on Jun 27, 2012 10:19:43 PM PDT
torturedsoul says:
Thanks for your review. I was about to purchase the game just to check it out but upon reading about the DRM and other complications you mentioned it has totally changed my mind so thanks again. Sad that a once great company like Bioware is reduced to these tactics now it's all about 'screw the consumer and make a quick buck before they realize it'.

Posted on Jul 13, 2012 5:29:43 PM PDT
good report, I too was gonna by the game, but after all that terms agreement stuff i'm looking elsewere... to many games out there... thanks,, on behalf of us all...

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 7, 2012 6:58:08 AM PDT
To be honest with you, I agree with Talus, the ToS and DRM is annoying, however, the story in the game is pretty good, and the way it plays out spoil me for any other game. I personally have not have any trouble with the redeeming the codes and reinstalling the DLC and such, so I guess I'm not that frustrated over how it works. This game and Dragon Age II (to me) is amazing XD Try it and make your own opinion :)

Posted on Nov 16, 2012 8:37:58 AM PST
TQM Doctor says:
Thanks for the great review. I surely don't need another headache. I was just interested in playing a game, not getting a second unpaid job. I won't buy this product either.
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