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Customer Review

29 of 188 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Restrictions upon usage not listed in item description due to Stream, December 18, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: 2K Strategy Super Pack [Download] (Software Download)
I would love to simply play and review the games, but upon purchase I was not able to download these titles from My Game Library as you'd normally do with an Amazon game download. I was redirected to Steam. I have to make an account, download through Steam (which rev'd up my CPU to 100% during the download, almost crashed my computer) and can only play these games while logged in to Steam. I do not want to have to be logged into the internet to play my games. There are times when I am traveling and don't have access to wi-fi and wanted games to play when that happens. This Steam DRM takes away functionality that I wanted. Of course there was no warning about this, and despite the fact that the link to buy says "purchase" you aren't actually purchasing any ownership of a copy of the game in any way according to the fine print. In my opinion this is a total ripoff since restrictions upon usage were not declared and amazon has a no refund on downloads policy.
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Showing 1-10 of 15 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 18, 2012 3:56:00 PM PST
Razvan Rogoz says:
It mentions "DRM - STEAM".

As far as your other comments:
1) I've been using Steam for a while now and it never crashed my computer. It downloads at about 2.4/mb and I can do something else in this time, even something like playing a game.
2) Almost all publishers are using a DRM or another - Steam is the lesser evil of them all. Comparing it to UbiSoft or Origin, Steam is actually non-instrusive.
3) It's not a rip-off. You've bought $100+ worth of games for $20.

The only down-side of Steam is that yes, you can't (I think) play while offline. When Steam was launched with Half Life 2, it required only a one time connection to activate. Now I'm almost sure that you must be online all the time.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2012 4:24:35 PM PST
D. Owen says:
You can certainly use Steam in "offline mode" with no internet connection. You have the option somewhere, I think it's on the login screen. It says "start Steam in offline mode" or similar. Of course you have to have already downloaded the game and installed it, but as long as you've already done that, you need never be connected again.

And yes, it says so RIGHT on the Amazon store page, right at the top.

I don't know... I still see the occasional post bashing Steam, but I think it's the best thing that's ever happened to PC gaming (and I started on a 386 with MCGA graphics). I now have over 400 games in my Steam library. I have access to them anytime I want, from anywhere on Earth, for as long as I live, on any computer. I don't need to keep a bunch of rotting boxes or worry about losing or scratching an optical disc. (I don't have to listen to the annoying sounds of an optical drive, either.)

Obviously our opinions differ, MorningGloria, but there is one more thing I should point out: you NEVER own a video game, now matter what kind of physical media you buy it on. You are paying for a LICENSE to play a game. That is the law. If you OWNED the game, then you could legally make copies and sell those copies to other people, couldn't you? If you want to OWN a video game, then you have to buy the intellectual property from the people who own it, and it would generally cost millions of dollars (depending on the game, of course). I'm willing to bet you've never done that. :)

This is the way it has worked since the Atari 2600 and before, but people have never bothered to understand it before now. With the advent of digital distribution, people are being forced to realize that what they are actually buying is a license, not a game. That license grants you certain rights to install and play a game under certain conditions... that is all. The publisher owns the game, and you pay to play it.

The difference between a beat-up old DVD-ROM and Steam is that with Steam, you will always have access to your games as long as you have access to the internet. You don't have to keep up with a disc, or a box, or a paper manual. (And as already mentioned, you don't even need internet access after you successfully install the game.)

All in all, not a very good reason to rate this collection of magnificent games so poorly when you simply didn't read the store page!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2012 5:29:47 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 18, 2012 5:30:32 PM PST
Thank you both for your responses. I like these games. The review is that there are conditions of use to this particular pack of these games that are also available in other formats. It is a legitimate review, D. Owen, to state a problem I perceived with this format that can influence another person's purchase. Someone else might want to know. All they have to do is read my review to see that it is not a complaint about actual gameplay. It's not like I was complaining about shipping or something like that. I don't like the product through the required third-party Steam, at all. Everyone has their own reasons for assigning a star-rating. I gave mine. Don't presume to dictate to me what is acceptable in your eyes, vote down my review if you don't like it. Other people who read this will also see that you think the games are magnificent, and if they couldn't care less about Steam or not, they'll still want to buy it.

Unfortunately, I am not amazingly familiar with the current DRM companies and how they operate. Shouldn't there at least be a little explanation, or link, somewhere on the product page that I'm dealing with a company called steam? I knew the publisher of the game is 2K games and expect terms of use from them, but a third company was not obvious except to someone already familiar with how DRM is currently applied. A link to the Steam page would have been sufficient. It wasn't there, so I stand by not feeling that the product as described is what is provided. If the description changes my rating would as well. I do appreciate you letting me know I can use it offline. If that is the case, I'll add a star or two.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012 6:22:09 AM PST
Steam has an offline mode.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012 4:57:39 PM PST
GSRfan01 says:
Origin is a steam copy. Then there's securom.... it's the most intrusive crappy DRM ever essentially, it limits game installs, has been known to stop programs from running, typically anything with the ability to mount .iso files as they're considered "piracy" tools. It always runs in the background with a game.

It also clearly states the DRM is Steam, which really isn't DRM , at least not just. It's a platform, with friends, deals, voice chat, it's an entire interface. The only time I've had an issue with them is once i put my laptop in hibernate before school and their servers block steam so created a log on issue where i couldn't sign into offline mode nor online mode. aside then if you say, suddenly lost internet connection you'd be perfectly fine with playing your steam games. And aside Source games every game has their standard install files so if i bothers you that much, download a crack for it.

ANY game you purchase now adays that isn't Indie will have DRM in one form or another. Assassin's creed games used to lock saving if you weren't online i believe. DRM such as securom is an evil idea and only hurts the end users, but Steam is software supported by great customer support and an outstanding company (Valve) who truly listen to their customers and help if they can.

I say give it a shot, and if not, just crack / "pirate" the game if you don't want DRM (which is legal as you own the games already).

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 20, 2012 1:18:27 PM PST
Alejandro says:
Well, the Civ IV and Stronghold games that are thrown in are available in other formats, but Civilization V and its expansion pack are Steam games. That is, no matter where or how you buy them, these games were designed to be on the Steam platform. You can't get them in any other format. That's just the game itself.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 20, 2012 6:35:53 PM PST
Nikit Malkan says:
Steam has an offline mode. Steam >> Go Offline.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 21, 2012 10:46:44 AM PST
"I say give it a shot, and if not, just crack / "pirate" the game if you don't want DRM (which is legal as you own the games already). "

No, actually it's not. What's legal is having a digital copy of a game you already own. Pirating that digital copy is not legal, you actually have to make the .iso file yourself for your digital copy to be legal. For example, If you're playing a digital copy of a playstation game not only would you have had to make the .iso yourself but the emulator that you're using to emulate the playstation on your pc must contain code that you yourself ripped from a playstation. If you download an emulator, if you download an .iso, you're committing a crime. There's nothing ambiguous here people, and it doesn't matter what your friends friend says about the law and if they disagree with me. I'm not stating opinion.

Posted on Dec 21, 2012 12:43:42 PM PST
Korianto says:
MG - on the Webpage for this package it clearly states that these are STEAM games - right at the top - "DRM - STEAM"

That should have told you that these games were all activated via STEAM and downloaded VIA Steam. Most games today use STEAM - if you read the back of any boxed game, you'll see that you must accept STEAM Software in order to use the Game's software. It's usually clearly labeled. It's a safe way for the Software Producers to have a DRM control over their software, and for most of us Users, it's an easy way.

As to owning a Game - you never own a game. That little agreement that comes up before they let you install the game on your PC - that's a License agreement. You agree that you will license the software from the owner -them. You never own the software - you only have a license to use it.

And Steam does have an offline mode - shoot - if they didn't Users would be up in arms. Most times you can play offline for up to thirty days before you have to go online to sort of "check-in". They do this to ensure the software you're using isn't pirated. And that's where all this originated. Piracy of software - hackers stealing programs and trading them amongst themselves. It cost the Software Producers millions of dollars in the past. That's why they came up with various DRM scenarios like Steam and UPLAY and ORIGIN and the like.

This is not a rip-off - if you look at Amazon's information on Downloading - and everything that goes with it - you'll see things are explained. And remember - all your Software - including game activation codes are kept in your Amazon Software and Games download library - you always have access to them. YOu can always use them again if you lose your software. And if Steam won't accept the code - just contact Amazon Customer Service for help - they'll send you a new code quick as can be (I know, they've sent me a new code within two hours of my sending them an email. ).

Good Luck and happy Amazon Gaming.

Posted on Dec 22, 2012 11:24:23 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 23, 2012 6:50:06 PM PST
kronpas says:
As far I know, Civ V REQUIRES Steam to install, let alone play it, so you have to bear with Steam "DRM" even if you bought it somewhere else. This is NOT a legitimate review, since
1, the "reviewer" didnt read item desc. at all, it said clearly DRM - STEAM
2, the "reviewer" is uneducated, since Steam is essentially part of the package, absolutely NOT optional.
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