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RangerWest

DRM for releasing games (Digital Rights Management/Encryption)

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Hello there, Suppose I want to release a game and protect it with DRM by encrypting it. I know Microsoft has solutions for media files, but what methods are used for DRM for video games. Thanks! Ranger

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Simple CD checks are the most common.

And placing DRM on the media [images, music] is also just as effective in keeping people from copying them.

Which is of course, not at all. As long as the user has physical access to the machine with the code/images/music, and can actually play the game, they can copy everything. DRM or copy protection will merely slow that process and cause more technical problems for various PC platforms.

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What if you were going to distribute the software not on CD's nor DVDs, but as a download.

What would be the best mechanism for DRM then?

I know DRM isn't perfect, but what comes close?

Best,

Ranger :)

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The commonly used method in that case is a centralized server which takes a username/password pair or a cryptographic key which is required for your download to run [until a cracker takes out the server check], and would require all of the people with your download to connect to the internet to play.

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Hello!

But what kind of DRM software is usually used for this?

Is it Microsoft DRM? Is it out-of-the-box DRM? Or does every company integrate their own DRM? If so, how is DRM most commony integrated on a technical level?

Thanks!

Elliot :)

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Quote:
Original post by RangerWest
Hello!

But what kind of DRM software is usually used for this?

Is it Microsoft DRM? Is it out-of-the-box DRM? Or does every company integrate their own DRM? If so, how is DRM most commony integrated on a technical level?

Thanks!

Elliot :)


For out-of-the-box, you've got SafeCast from Macrovision. GameSpy has their Direct2Drive stuff.

To be honest, there are too many to count for the downloadable DRM solutions. Your best bet if you're looking for an out-of-the-box system is to read the ads in the back of Dr. Dobb's Journal.

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Thanks!

Has anyone ever used any of Microsoft's DRM for video game protection?

It is well suited to protecting media--video and audio--anything played on the windows media player, but how could it be adapted for games?

Thanks!

Ranger :)

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To be honest, Microsoft's DRM is solely focused towards protecting the contents of the ASF wrapper and should be considered part of Windows Media in that regard.

Your options are:

1) Use an out-of-box solution like SafeCast or Direct2Drive;

2) Use an internet distribution system like Steam;

3) Use a server authentication system like Windows XP Activation uses; or

4) Use a client serial number systme like WinZIP uses;

5) Use a hardware dongle authentication system like Maya or 3D Studio MAX use; or

6) Use the honor system.

Pick what's best for your pocket, product and market.

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