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CD Projekt: Publishers are scared to go DRM-free

CD Projekt: Publishers are scared to go DRM-free

CD Projekt has recently re-released The Witcher in a new collected and enhanced edition.

CD Projekt, the publisher behind The Witcher, reckons that many other large publishers are too scared to stop using DRM and that the only real way to stop piracy is to offer greater value retail products.

It's obviously the route that CD Projekt prefers as the company has just re-released it's game The Witcher with a new enhanced addition. The new release includes extra missions, a game editor, two CD soundtracks, a short story based on the game and a full strategy guide for the title. The company has also recently launched GOG, a web portal which is to be used for distributing classic PC games such as Fallout.

"We're trying to convince publishers there is nothing to be afraid of," said company CEO Michal Kicinski to GamesIndustry.biz.

"DRM-free, that is something they are really scared of, but on the other hand we can say 'all of those games are available pirated widely so it's better to sell them for small money than make the customer's life difficult and get some more revenues'."

Specifically Kicinski is directing his comments to EA, who have recieved a huge backlash from the community for the use of DRM in games such as Spore.

"It's the same with buying music online with DRM, Amazon has decided not to provide it with DRM, iTunes is doing this iTunes plus. DRM makes customer's lives too complicated, and this is usually because of some corporate ideas, policies and trying to be smart, too smart, in how to get customers and how to keep them and no let them go somewhere else. We are believers in the free market and bringing freedom to customers."

"Piracy in Poland is always much, much bigger here than in Western countries so we got used to living with piracy and we grew up in a surrounding where there was no help from governments to actually fight piracy," he said. "So we had to learn to compete with pirates"

"For example we believe that GOG.com makes such a good offer that it's not worth pirating... We attract people to buy the original games instead of pirating them and that's the most efficient way of fighting piracy."

Do you agree with DRM and copy protection, or are you pro-piracy all the way? Let us know in the forums.

17 Comments

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Bladestorm 22nd September 2008, 11:44 Quote
Good for them :). And GOG is awesome, though worrying me slightly right now as even though I was in the early access and bought some games, I don't seem able to get anything but the teaser page right at this moment.
proxess 22nd September 2008, 11:48 Quote
Makes me feel like I want to buy it... just for them being so cool about piracy!
Dreaming 22nd September 2008, 11:52 Quote
Have to agree with them and also agree with proxess - it makes you want to throw money their way for having the right attitude in that piracy can't be controlled directly you can only control the demand for your game.
impar 22nd September 2008, 12:09 Quote
Greetings!

Advanced DRM schemes, like the one being used by EA, get an immediate no-buy tag in my list.
May get the games when they are released at 9,99€, though.
mmorgue 22nd September 2008, 12:19 Quote
Good God, someone with decent, logical and real-world approach to the problem.

+1 to proxess and Dreaming; I too would pay for the game 100% just because they have the correct attitude.

What I like is that they aren't "giving in" to piracy as they fully acknowledge what none of the major media labels will -- piracy exists and it always will. The only way to reduce the effect is to perhaps change the minds of people who would otherwise buy the media if it didn't have ridiculous, draconian means of enforcing copyrights.

Instead, they want to entice the consumer with, <shock>, quality and content. ;)
Kúsař 22nd September 2008, 12:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreaming
Have to agree with them and also agree with proxess - it makes you want to throw money their way for having the right attitude in that piracy can't be controlled directly you can only control the demand for your game.

Exactly! I'm playing Oblivion - no DRM, no copy protection. I even bought it for a high price(collector's edition) - because I love this game. And they treat me like a honest gamer! Now that makes me want to donate money to them! Happy customer... :)

I've got some experience with CD Projekt - they sell some games in my country - although they charge a lot of money for end users, their offers via stores are much better(Doom3 + RoE for 20$ last year). Some of their offers makes piracy the "uncomfortable" way of obtaining games. Probably the best way to fight the piracy...

Impar, thanks on update on Crysis copy protection. Now that I know it doesn't require inet connection...well, EA made themselves reputation with DRM in their latest games...
DXR_13KE 22nd September 2008, 12:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by impar
Greetings!

Advanced DRM schemes, like the one being used by EA, get an immediate no-buy tag in my list.
May get the games when they are released at 9,99€, though.

more like 6.90€, considering the current exchange rate.

edit: these guys are fu**ing awesome!!!! i will buy some games from them, especially MDK.

edit: i hope they make game packs with several games that sell for a discount.
[USRF]Obiwan 22nd September 2008, 12:47 Quote
Did I see MDK on the GOG site? thats kewl!

I love their thinking of DRMFREE: You won't find any intrusive copy protection in our games; we hate draconian DRM schemes just as much as you do, so at GOG.com you don't just buy the game, you actually own it. Once you download a game, you can install it on any PC and even re-download it whenever you want, as many times as you need, and you can play it without an internet connection.

Wow I actually OWN the game instead of "The right to lend it' ..
Zurechial 22nd September 2008, 14:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bladestorm
Good for them :). And GOG is awesome, though worrying me slightly right now as even though I was in the early access and bought some games, I don't seem able to get anything but the teaser page right at this moment.

They don't make it very clear how to get back into the site for the beta users, but you just need to work around the teaser page and log in with your beta account.

http://www.gog.com/en/catalogue/

That URL should get you to the Beta catalogue, where you can log in and buy/download the games.

GOG is awesome in every regard from my usage of it so far, the only thing it needs is a bigger catalogue of games, but it's steadily growing as they're adding a couple of games each week.
The Baldur's Gate series and Planescape Torment are high on the wishlists of most of the GOG users on the forums, and since GOG is already partnered with Interplay, it looks promising..
I already have my original hard-copies of the BG series and PST kept safely in a place of pride on my shelf, but it'll be nice to see those games introduced to some new gamers. It might remind people how good cRPGs used to be..
On top of that, though, GOG put a bit of effort into making older games compatible with XP and Vista, so hopefully they might be able to clean up some of PST's glitchiness in XP and its problems with newer graphics hardware.

CD Projekt and GOG ftw. :)
[USRF]Obiwan 22nd September 2008, 15:56 Quote
What impressed me most is that they make the old games compatible with the new operating systems. I have a shipload of old games on the shelf that do not work since XP or now with Vista. If it is out of the beta program I will absolutely look around searching for my own classics!
E.E.L. Ambiense 22nd September 2008, 16:32 Quote
Total respect to them for this. I like it when they use their brains!
Sleepstreamer 22nd September 2008, 16:59 Quote
Think I'm gonna go buy some games off GOG...
pendragon 22nd September 2008, 19:02 Quote
this makes me glad I plunked down the cash for The Witcher :) ..... (which is a terriffic game, I might add)
supaste 22nd September 2008, 20:20 Quote
As brilliant as this is some people may have trouble chooseing to use it - hear me out lol

I use steam at the moment for buying games online and i have my own catalog of games within it. If i was to start buying games off gog (which i may well do) it would add another password to remember. My point being that people may have a hard time changing their ways, alot of people are loyal to steam.
Jojii 22nd September 2008, 20:34 Quote
when people start recieving bills at thier homes after they download off a p2p, then piracy will stop.
Spaceraver 23rd September 2008, 08:22 Quote
I will support them over EA any day.
I remember playing Red Alert with a friend over lan using the same set of CD's. If they implement that in a game im in. They could set a limit of four players for x amount of days for example. Those were the days.
Bladestorm 23rd September 2008, 13:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zurechial
They don't make it very clear how to get back into the site for the beta users, but you just need to work around the teaser page and log in with your beta account.

http://www.gog.com/en/catalogue/

That URL should get you to the Beta catalogue, where you can log in and buy/download the games.

GOG is awesome in every regard from my usage of it so far, the only thing it needs is a bigger catalogue of games, but it's steadily growing as they're adding a couple of games each week.
The Baldur's Gate series and Planescape Torment are high on the wishlists of most of the GOG users on the forums, and since GOG is already partnered with Interplay, it looks promising..
I already have my original hard-copies of the BG series and PST kept safely in a place of pride on my shelf, but it'll be nice to see those games introduced to some new gamers. It might remind people how good cRPGs used to be..
On top of that, though, GOG put a bit of effort into making older games compatible with XP and Vista, so hopefully they might be able to clean up some of PST's glitchiness in XP and its problems with newer graphics hardware.

CD Projekt and GOG ftw. :)

That link is redirecting to the teaser page for me also though. :'(
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