Wednesday, August 22nd 2018

GOG Launches FCK DRM Initiative: Informing Gamers, Fighting DRM

GOG as a platform has been the pioneer in delivering DRM-free games to people all around the world. The basic idea is that ownership in DRM-infused games really isn't; it's more of a time bomb contract that gamers make with a third party that may or may not fulfill their end of the bargain (or may very well end support for a game, disable DRM verification servers in for single player games, and all of that).

As part of its effort to fight against DRM's entrenchment in the industry, and part of GOG's reasoning that the way to garner loyalty is not achieved by not trusting consumers from the get go, GOG launched their FCK DRM initiative, via a blog post on their news section, pointing to their new, information laden website. GOG says that "We strongly believe that if you buy a game, it should be yours, and you can play it the way it's convenient for you, and not how others want you to use it", and that the goal of this initiative is to "educate people and ignite a discussion about DRM".
What is DRM?

Digital Rights Management, DRM, is a really broad term for tech that controls how, and when, digital content can be used - like your games, music, video, or books.

Games with DRM include a layer of software or code on top of what's needed to just play the game. Nowadays DRM will send your information to an online server, it could run checks to see if you touched any files, or outright refuse access unless you're logged in somewhere.

In other words, DRM is there to question what you're doing every step of the way.
Why should you care about DRM?

Because there is a killswitch built into your games. Sure, DRM might not affect you right now, but corporations hold the key and they'll only let you in as long as you can repeatedly prove ownership. As long as you're connected to the internet. As long as their DRM works without fault. As long they're still around.

So should the burden of proof be on you? Do you place your trust in someone who doesn't trust you?
Sources: GOG News Page, FCK DRM Page, via Tom's Hardware
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30 Comments on GOG Launches FCK DRM Initiative: Informing Gamers, Fighting DRM

#1
RejZoR
Which is why I almost exclusively buy on GOG for quite some time. Even if game is a bit more expensive on Steam, I'll buy it on GOG instead. I don't even buy anything for Origin anymore because EA is a stinker and their client is garbage. Redownloading and reinstalling all games if you format Windows. Stupid. With Steam you just install it in same place and voila, GOG has quick import which isn't as fast as Steam and has to redownload some stuff, but it's automatic and I can do other stuff after I scan the games folder.
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#2
lynx29
"RejZoR said:
Which is why I almost exclusively buy on GOG for quite some time. Even if game is a bit more expensive on Steam, I'll buy it on GOG instead. I don't even buy anything for Origin anymore because EA is a stinker and their client is garbage. Redownloading and reinstalling all games if you format Windows. Stupid. With Steam you just install it in same place and voila, GOG has quick import which isn't as fast as Steam and has to redownload some stuff, but it's automatic and I can do other stuff after I scan the games folder.
Yep, I have a nice GoG collection myself, I just wish GoG Galaxy had a "Lite" version, with no built in anything except a game updater, lol, it feels kind of bloated like other clients are, when it doesn't need to be.
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#3
Liviu Cojocaru
Great job GOG I hope this will be a model for others...
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#4
lexluthermiester
"RejZoR said:
Which is why I almost exclusively buy on GOG for quite some time. Even if game is a bit more expensive on Steam, I'll buy it on GOG instead. I don't even buy anything for Origin anymore because EA is a stinker and their client is garbage. Redownloading and reinstalling all games if you format Windows. Stupid. With Steam you just install it in same place and voila, GOG has quick import which isn't as fast as Steam and has to redownload some stuff, but it's automatic and I can do other stuff after I scan the games folder.
I think you have that backwards, GOG games run fine just being copied over from a backup into a fresh install of Windows. Steam Games still need to redownload a few files, but not all.

"lynx29 said:
Yep, I have a nice GoG collection myself, I just wish GoG Galaxy had a "Lite" version, with no built in anything except a game updater, lol, it feels kind of bloated like other clients are, when it doesn't need to be.
You don't have to use it the GOG Galaxy Client, completely optional. I don't, download and install all my games the normal way.
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#5
FreedomEclipse
~Technological Technocrat~
I remember a thing with older games from defunct studios, Games with always online DRM wont allow folks to play the damn game because the publisher/studio who made the game no longer exists and nobody decided to step in and keep the servers running. The guy was looking for a work around for the DRM.

I think it was a reddit post where i read it where a poster was asking for help but everyone just jumped him all at once, telling him he should of bought the game when in fact he did have the game but get couldnt play it because of DRM...
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#6
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
Couldn't agree more with GoG. DRM should be illegal, the lengths some of it goes to, at least.

Unfortunately I've only bought a couple of old games from GoG, because that's all I was interested in. It's hard to support them without content and that's the key. None of the premium games companies will publish on GoG, specifically because of the lack of DRM.

As it was, the games I bought were Unreal Tournament and Unreal Tournament 2004, which I already had on Steam and bought specifically to support GoG.
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#7
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
"qubit said:
Unfortunately I've only bought a couple of old games from GoG, because that's all I was interested in. It's hard to support them without content and that's the key.
Haven’t been there in QUITE awhile, huh? Lots of good game content there from just the last 8 years, and quite a bit of newly released content as well, same as goes on Steam, minus the DRM.

Hell, my GOG Library is now bigger than Steam!
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#8
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
@rtwjunkie Cool, I'll check them out, but it's not been all that long.

I have to confess that the auto updates are a bit of a killer feature on Steam for me too. I've got hundreds of games on there and it would be impossible to keep them all updated manually, so I sorta grudgingly accept the Steam style account based DRM. It runs pretty smoothly too and installing games on another PC is a piece of cake, too.
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#9
RejZoR
"lexluthermiester said:
I think you have that backwards, GOG games run fine just being copied over from a backup into a fresh install of Windows. Steam Games still need to redownload a few files, but not all.


You don't have to use it the GOG Galaxy Client, completely optional. I don't, download and install all my games the normal way.
Not if you're using Galaxy. And Steam doesn't redownload anything, it just has to go through first time install thing for each game when you run it. But that's few seconds thing, not downloading hundreds of gigabytes like with Origin...
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#10
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
"qubit said:
@rtwjunkie Cool, I'll check them out, but it's not been all that long.

I have to confess that the auto updates are a bit of a killer feature on Steam for me too. I've got hundreds of games on there and it would be impossible to keep them all updated manually, so I sorta grudgingly accept the Steam style account based DRM. It runs pretty smoothly too and installing games on another PC is a piece of cake, too.
Fair enough! Convenience is important, too.
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#11
lexluthermiester
"RejZoR said:
Not if you're using Galaxy.
I've never used it and have no intention to, so perhaps that is an experience limited to the Galaxy client. Don't use it. Login to GOG, and download your games from your Library the normal way.

"qubit said:
I have to confess that the auto updates are a bit of a killer feature on Steam for me too. I've got hundreds of games on there and it would be impossible to keep them all updated manually, so I sorta grudgingly accept the Steam style account based DRM. It runs pretty smoothly too and installing games on another PC is a piece of cake, too.
I only go looking for updates if a glitch or crash is encountered and then only the game that is having the issue. If it's not broken, don't go looking for a fix unless there is a reason. So for me, updates are rare. Even on Steam, auto-updates are turned off.
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#12
DeathtoGnomes
GOG is great, it has titles you dont find on Steam. Its collection of early PC games, talking early 80s here, is without a doubt amazing, not to mention being able to play them on win10 just makes them that much better to experience again and again. You can find me on GOG under the same name.

#leasuresuitlarry!
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#13
RejZoR
"lexluthermiester said:
I've never used it and have no intention to, so perhaps that is an experience limited to the Galaxy client. Don't use it. Login to GOG, and download your games from your Library the normal way.


I only go looking for updates if a glitch or crash is encountered and then only the game that is having the issue. If it's not broken, don't go looking for a fix unless there is a reason. So for me, updates are rare. Even on Steam, auto-updates are turned off.
Well, that's the freedom they give you. I like Galaxy client. It's convenient, but doesn't bound me to anything. Games still run without it if I want so all is fine either way.
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#14
Fx
Steam has backup and restore functionality built in. I just found about it and successfully used it.
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#15
lynx29
"Fx said:
Steam has backup and restore functionality built in. I just found about it and successfully used it.
Uplay still has the best back up system ever. It takes 0 seconds. You literally can do a clean install of OS with no backups, and just login to Uplay on new OS, and click "locate installed game" it takes 10 seconds to discover the files compared to 2 mins plus to Steam discovering. For the same 50gb+ size games. Not sure why that is, but Uplay is the best imo, but Steam is better at other things and has a community, so eh.
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#16
Fx
"lynx29 said:
Uplay still has the best back up system ever. It takes 0 seconds. You literally can do a clean install of OS with no backups, and just login to Uplay on new OS, and click "locate installed game" it takes 10 seconds to discover the files compared to 2 mins plus to Steam discovering. For the same 50gb+ size games. Not sure why that is, but Uplay is the best imo, but Steam is better at other things and has a community, so eh.
Good to know, but I've only used Uplay maybe once because I don't play many Ubisoft titles at all.
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#17
StrayKAT
Pretty cool.. but a bit tasteless for a campaign title. lol. /prude

That said, I'm so invested in Steam's library that I've sort of reached the point of no return. And GOG's "transfer" program they just released doesn't qualify for a single title. So all I have pretty much have is the Witcher series and.... Defender of the Crown (old Amiga nostalgia).
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#18
amit_talkin
"Fx said:
Steam has backup and restore functionality built in. I just found about it and successfully used it.
"lynx29 said:
Uplay still has the best back up system ever. It takes 0 seconds. You literally can do a clean install of OS with no backups, and just login to Uplay on new OS, and click "locate installed game" it takes 10 seconds to discover the files compared to 2 mins plus to Steam discovering. For the same 50gb+ size games. Not sure why that is, but Uplay is the best imo, but Steam is better at other things and has a community, so eh.
Wait what? Just install steam client with all games in non-OS drive. Now whenever You format Your OS and want to play games, just launch steam from where You installed it previously. Nothing needs to be reinstalled here...not even the client. It always made me wondering when people talk about "back and restore" and "reinstalling games on steam" etc etc. Its pretty simple.
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#19
StrayKAT
"amit_talkin said:
Wait what? Just install steam client with all games in non-OS drive. Now whenever You format Your OS and want to play games, just launch steam from where You installed it previously. Nothing needs to be reinstalled here...not even the client. It always made me wondering when people talk about "back and restore" and "reinstalling games on steam" etc etc. Its pretty simple.
My prob is I scatter them across different drives (OS drive is Optane, and sometimes I like games on it).
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#20
Easo
Yeah, I wonder, what the greedbags would answer to the question of what happens if your company dies? Even the best ones might, because stuff happens. What then? Delete the game or search for shady cracks? What would they say? xD
Anyway, GOG will be around as long as their own games enough money. The lack of all the AAA games is probably hurting them, but nowadays they do have a bunch of upper end stuff available.
Not gonna lie, I am sticking to Steam, convenience and all, plus I really dislike multiple sites/launchers for games. Though all Witcher's plus some old stuff is on GOG for me.
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#21
lexluthermiester
"Fx said:
Steam has backup and restore functionality built in. I just found about it and successfully used it.
Saw that too. It does work, but still doesn't solve the problem of publishers having the ability of denying users access to games.
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#22
amit_talkin
"StrayKAT said:
My prob is I scatter them across different drives (OS drive is Optane, and sometimes I like games on it).
Yea i have that too. Frequently played games on SSD and rest on WD black. You can just add multiple library folders spreaded across multiple disks to steam settings. ( Settings > Downloads > Steam Library Folders ).
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#23
Liquid Cool
At first glance...I thought the FCK DRM title seemed a little too edgy or perhaps even childish to some extent. Then I thought to myself about how I feel when people are discussing EULA's...and I instantly forgave them.

I've been "pretty much" purchasing exclusively from GOG for about the last year and a half. I still make the odd purchase from Steam now and then, but my GOG account is steadily catching up. I think it's probably about 200 games vs 100 games at this point. Origin and Ubisoft I essentially let die on the vine years ago, but like Twitch(42 free titles since April!)....I'll take any freebies they're handing out and stack them for later down the road.

What I really enjoy about installing my GOG titles on linux is that I don't need to use a client period. They don't even have one! :). I do everything right from the website using my Waterfox browser.

I've also set up an account on GOG's forums...same name/pic.

Best,

Liquid Cool
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#24
Readlight
games should be more portable not locked in Steam or ps4
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#25
lynx29
"Readlight said:
games should be more portable not locked in Steam or ps4
I like Gamefly myself for PS4 games, get the physical disc at a reasonable price, its especially nice if your someone like me who plays a lot of single player games but never beats them more than once. GameFly is great, but yeah for PC i prefer GoG
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