In a recent interview with John Walker of Rock Paper Shotgun, Ubisoft have stated that they have officially dropped the always online requirement to play many of their Uplay titles on PC.
In the interview, worldwide director of online games Stephanie Perotti and corporate communications manager Michael Burk state that “We have listened to feedback, and since June last year our policy for all of PC games is that we only require a one-time online activation when you first install the game, and from then you are free to play the game offline.”
The original DRM required that players of their games – including From Dust, Assassin’s Creed 2, and Splinter Cell: Conviction – on PC would have to have a constant live internet connection whilst playing their games, even in single player mode. If that connection dropped, so did the game.
When questioned about their stance on piracy and recent claims that PC suffered from 93-95% piracy rate, Perotti quickly qualified the original statement: “With regard to the numbers, the numbers are coming from both internal and external research. Research showed that it can reach that rate for some specific or popular PC games, and that number often varies depending on the territory. So we are not saying that it applies to all PC games for all territories, and we’re not saying that the same situation would apply for any game.”
While the online connection requirement was reduced to a one-time activation in July last year, this is the first time Ubisoft have officially announced that their version of always online is dead. Hopefully, this backtrack by one of the industry leaders in DRM will lead to a more end-user friendly approach to the problem for other publishers.
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This interview comes courtesy of Rock Paper Shotgun.