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speedie

demo vs. full version

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Curious what are some ways of forcing a Demo to only be a demo, and never a full version. I was playing someones demo today, and it made me think about this. Would it be good practice to just store a value in a file somewhere, who's location is hardcoded in the EXE. or do they ship completely different files from the full version's files. The later seems bad to me, cause all it would take is one person that has the fullversion to redistribute the files to people downloading the trial version. any thoughts?

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Do both. If you hard-code it in, all someone has to do is open up a hex-editor and change a value in the exe to get the full game. If you don't send all the files, the hacker has to both edit the exe and find the files from somewhere else.

Hope that helps
~Zix

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once me and a friend of mine did a harddisk id based serial number generation, but then again, it was not elegant nor was it uncrackable.. speaking of which, is there an uncrackable? maybe making a crippled version would be the way to go, but who would go all the way to download a complete version later on.. maybe some will.. but its easier to buy a serial number than buy a game and download i suppose..

do a search for "copy protection" on the forums and the results are interesting.. and also found this a good read - http://www.gamedev.net/community/forums/topic.asp?topic_id=354922

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i dunno maybe you could put a hardcoded "if level or stage is more than 2 go to buy-game-screen then quit" ?? Or u could hardcode the content u use. or hardcode hashes of bits of the files to make sure they're the same maybe im just throwing random ideas around here.

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Nothing is uncrackable if you provide the demo/full game in a single download... but you can make it hard for the cracker.

One of the game that was the hardest to crack was Spyro, there were many copy-protections inside the game, each would be activated at a certain moment in the game. So, the cracker would crack the first one, and release its crack, thinking he's the best, then people play, get to level 7 and the game tells them "Go buy our game you damn stealer!!", then again at level 11 at exactly 51 seconds in, etc... The goal was to make it hard for the cracker to spot those parts of the code so that they couldn't remove them. It took a while before the game was fully cracked...

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