Square Enix Believes the Game Industry Needs DRM

DRM will remain a fixture in the game industry for a long time to come.

That, at least, is the belief of Square Enix America’s Senior Manager of Business and Legal Affairs Adam Sullivan who, speaking in an interview, affirmed the company’s belief in the necessity of DRM.

“I think DRM will be essential for the foreseeable future,” said Sullivan. “So long as we’re concerned about things like data privacy, account sharing and hacking, we’ll need some form of DRM.”

He would go on to say that Square Enix’s intention in implementing DRM is maximizing profit, presumably by nullifying piracy. That being the case, he admitted that it can be hard to determine just how useful DRM really is.

“[Square Enix has] a well-known reputation for being very protective of our IPs, which does deter many would-be pirates,” he stated. “However, effectiveness is notoriously difficult to measure — in short, we rely on the data available to us through our sales team and various vendors, along with consumer feedback.”

With that on the table, Sullivan stressed that effective DRM “can’t interfere with the customer’s ability to play the game.” Unfortunately, as gamers have seen in the past, that isn’t always a priority for some companies.

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4 Comments on Square Enix Believes the Game Industry Needs DRM

Gandhi

On April 17, 2014 at 4:34 am

Like most things, DRM can be implemented well or implemented poorly. I agree it’s probably a necessity so long as it’s there only to prevent piracy and protect accounts. The problem arises when it’s abused as a means to destroy the used games market or as a cynical means of forcing people to pay additional costs on a full-price and therefore supposedly complete game just to access some of its features that already exist on the disk.

Aedelric

On April 17, 2014 at 6:23 am

I have not seen a game with DRM that has managed to stop piracy, all it does is slow the process of being uploaded by several days. Hardly surprising as the people that crack these games see DRM as a fun challenge, the harder the better.

All DRM has ever done is harm legitimate owners, either through sloppy DRM inclusion or online server requirements. Which often go down or are removed after the games shelf life has expired making many of the games features no longer usable.

I have been burned before with sloppy DRM, I can not find any justification for it especially since that those that steal games would likely never buy the game anyway.

As for Square Enix, they have been quite out of touch these days, not just in regards to DRM.

Squinty

On April 18, 2014 at 11:27 am

They must be on drugs if they think DRM does anything to deter pirates. What it does deter is legitimate purchases.

Bumder

On April 18, 2014 at 11:36 am

Manager of out of touch, oft-ridiculed company makes statement of intent towards customer-unfriendly measures. Not much of a story.