Today’s WTF: Assassin’s Creed II PC Requires Uninterrupted Internet Connection

assassins-creed-iiNow, we here at GamerSushi don’t usually like using the WTF title for just any old occasion, but this new revelation regarding Assassin’s Creed II PC and its draconian DRM measures seems like the perfect fit. For those of us who are waiting until March to play Assassin’s Creed II (my personal favorite game of last year) on the PC, it looks like Ubisoft is trying to add insult to injury by requiring a constant internet connection to play the game.

This seems more like an effort to deter paying customers rather than pirates, but it gets better. Even if you’re lucky enough to have an unwavering 24/7 connection, you can still be booted out of the game if Ubisoft’s Master server goes down. Yes, you read that right: you’re totally helpless when you’re playing this game. When a disconnect happens, either on your end or theirs, you’re kicked out of your current game and back to the menu where your only option is to save your last checkpoint and wait until you’re connected again. Fortunately Assassin’s Creed II auto-saves frequently, so this shouldn’t be as big of a headache as it could have been, but it still seems like an unnecessarily harsh punishment to those who paid money for this game.

What do you guys think about this? Obviously it’s a very negative turn of events, so do you think this is going to affect the sales of this game, or perhaps all Ubisoft PC titles? Are you even going to buy this game anymore?

Source: PC Gamer Blog

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mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

28 thoughts on “Today’s WTF: Assassin’s Creed II PC Requires Uninterrupted Internet Connection”

  1. This is one instance where I am happy I bought this game for 360 instead of waiting for it to come out on computer.

    I do have a constant internet connection, but it would still be annoying to be kicked out when THEIR server goes down. Hopefully it will be reliable and will hardly ever crash, and I can say from experience that the game does autosave very often, so in the end this whole situation shouldn’t be a big problem, just an annoyance.

  2. I’ve never understood the logic behind DRM, it affects pirates approximately 0% and legal customers 100%. There has never been a (major) game in history that hasn’t been released on the warez scene within a few days with all of this BS removed.

    I would put good money on AC2 now coming on par with Spore for the most pirated game.

    As for me, I will probably still buy it but end up using an “illegal” crack to make it run without the cd and deter this crap.

    As for this somehow making consoles better, yes the pirating scene does effect us far more greatly then the console scene (which is still pretty hefty) but that doesn’t automatically rule out the big 3 advantages over a console (Keyboard, Mouse, Upgrades)

  3. well just because some people on the PC pirate, this is just ridiculous. What will people do when in about 2 years when Ubisoft decides not to run their master server? This is the worst thing I have ever heard of. Why is PC players always getting the shaft. I am going to boycott every Ubisoft game with this type of system, I want to know why it is even necessary. this will just hurt their sales. Good thing I’m not interested in any of their games anyways.

  4. Oooh, now Pirates will be FRUSTRATED into penance!

    Yeah no.

    Ubisoft is just so stupid. This won’t deter pirating, this will just piss off people who want to play! What the flying fungus, Ubisoft?!!?

  5. This is utterly ridiculous. The only think I can say is where is it going to stop? This internet connection thing means the game can only be played aslong as Ubisoft wants to spend money keeping it up, what if we want to come back to the game in 5 years or more? Game’s will ALWAYS be pirated, Yet they still make more than enough off of official game sales to keep food on their plates, and the majority will always buy the game aslong as there are not silly protocals put in place that cause the game’s running or instalation to be more difficult than it should be.
    Phew rant over.

  6. I’m not getting the game, but I feel for the people who are, and have to put up with this particular example of complete bullshit.

    You mentioned auto-saves, but what about quick saves, can you not do that in AC games?

  7. [quote comment=”10305″]I’ve never understood the logic behind DRM, it affects pirates approximately 0% and legal customers 100%. There has never been a (major) game in history that hasn’t been released on the warez scene within a few days with all of this BS removed.

    I would put good money on AC2 now coming on par with Spore for the most pirated game.

    As for me, I will probably still buy it but end up using an “illegal” crack to make it run without the cd and deter this crap.

    As for this somehow making consoles better, yes the pirating scene does effect us far more greatly then the console scene (which is still pretty hefty) but that doesn’t automatically rule out the big 3 advantages over a console (Keyboard, Mouse, Upgrades)[/quote]

    Upgrades?

  8. What I hate about DRM is when they basically decree that you no longer own the thing you paid for anymore. Basically, if Ubisoft ever pulled the plug on this title, people would be unable to even play it anymore, and I think that crosses some very bad lines. Honestly, I’m not even sure how this is legal.

    And Anthony, I know you’re jesting with your “consoles ftw” statement, but in the future, when digital downloads crossover to consoles in a more mainstream manner, they won’t be immune either.

  9. See, here’s the problem with PC gaming. I own a gaming rig and a 360, and with some exceptions, I generally get games for the PC if possible. Easy multiplayer, modability, better graphics, you can even use the 360 controller in most cases. (*cough* Bioshock 2) Plus, you save $10 unless you’re dealing with Activision. But when this kind of thing happens, it’s just not worth it to bother installing the game. It’s too much trouble. That sounds lazy, but it’s true. I like being able to double-click and play, you know how it goes, ‘I bought it, it’s mine.’

    But I think more people should look at it the way I do. Not the I’ll pirate it approach. Rather, the I only have so much free time in my day and I can’t get to every major release, so if you’re game’s DRM alone can turn me off to it, then I’ll just look somewhere else for entertainment. Problem solved.

  10. Well even as a console gamer I see this as MAJOR BS. Seriously, I really cannot see this as a deterrent to pirates. Surely though, a mod would fix this easily? It seems to fix everything else devs do to piss off their PC market. You PC gamers really are being treated like shit. I can empathise. I own a PS3, therefore Valve hates me ๐Ÿ™

  11. I give it a week from release until there is a crack for it. Just look at modern warfare 2 and dedicated servers…

  12. [quote comment=”10313″]What I hate about DRM is when they basically decree that you no longer own the thing you paid for anymore. Basically, if Ubisoft ever pulled the plug on this title, people would be unable to even play it anymore, and I think that crosses some very bad lines. Honestly, I’m not even sure how this is legal.

    And Anthony, I know you’re jesting with your “consoles ftw” statement, but in the future, when digital downloads crossover to consoles in a more mainstream manner, they won’t be immune either.[/quote]

    Actually, after thinking about it, Eddy, I don’t know if that would be the case for consoles. PCs are kind of unregulated, compared to PSN and Xbox Live. I highly doubt Sony or Microsoft would allow such a thing

    1. I don’t know, I’d still have to disagree. You know what’s so great to publishers about digital downloads? It means no used game sales. They’ve got to be dying to get to that point on the console. If you’re Microsoft or Sony, isn’t it more appealing to get a bigger cut of every single game bought for your system because it was purchased through your online service? I’ll bet both the console owners and video game developers are chomping at the bit for this. More money for both of them as well as eliminating used game sales.

  13. Well Eddy in Sony’s case this whole digital-only business plan with DRM etc. is highly unlikely to happen. I read in OPM (UK) that they don’t want to release retail PS3 games on the PSN Store beyond Warhawk, Burnout and Socom. Their official reasons are:
    1) Space on the HDD. Apparently PS3 games are very large and require large disc spaces including the coveted 50Gb by MGS4 so even with a 250Gb HDD it’s not enough and;
    2) Broadband speeds. I and many others are running on near dail-up speeds so its not a streamlined enough service. I have less than 1Mb Broadband.

    1. Skuba, I’m not talking about the PS3, but beyond. Future consoles, etc. Everything’s going to be digital someday, so people need to make sure and make it known that we’re not going to put up with stuff like this before it’s too widespread.

  14. [quote comment=”10326″]I don’t know, I’d still have to disagree. You know what’s so great to publishers about digital downloads? It means no used game sales. They’ve got to be dying to get to that point on the console. If you’re Microsoft or Sony, isn’t it more appealing to get a bigger cut of every single game bought for your system because it was purchased through your online service? I’ll bet both the console owners and video game developers are chomping at the bit for this. More money for both of them as well as eliminating used game sales.[/quote]

    You make a good point there, but that assumes the game was bought via download, which makes more sense for this. If you buy it via disc, this sucks.

  15. Is this situation anything new for pcs? Didn’t Half-Life 2 have some kind of safeguard where you had to log onto Valve’s servers to play the game? I seem to remember something like that being a big deal. Any Valve fans out there care to straighten out my memory? Am I imagining this?

    Furthermore, I’m afraid that in the grand scheme of things, this is just another step towards the death of PC gaming. I know nobody wants to talk about this, but let’s face it, the PC game market is a mere shadow of what it was just 10 years ago. Whoever thought we’d see a world where the majority of games are getting developed for consoles first and then ported to PCs?

    Given the threat of piracy, the major publishers would love nothing better than to drive a stake through the heart of PCs and convert PC gamers to console gamers.

    I think this is a sad development because PCs are a unique and versatile platform, but I think it would be hard to argue that the future isn’t bleak for the PC game market.

  16. @Zayven

    You had to have steam to play Half Life 2 but it did not have to be online. this seriously sucks though, I can understand having to be online to install but all the time? I hope that the steam version does not have the DRM since most of the other games on steam, including spore, don’t.

  17. @ Eddy, that makes sense, I just interpreted your comment incorrectly. God help us when this happens! My internet times out enough as it is.

  18. Thanks for jogging my memory. I didn’t have a PC capable of playing HL2 at the time, so I didn’t remember the circumstances very well.

    On another note, maybe we’re all overreacting to this because how is playing AC2 with an uninterrupted connection going to be any different than playing an MMORPG?

    I mean, you can’t play World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XI without an internet connection, so how is this any different in practice?

    And again, I don’t think this is without precedent. Anybody remember Phantasy Star Universe? I believe you had to be logged on to play the single player component of it (unless you had the PS2 version, but even the xbox 360 version required you to log onto xbox live to play it).

  19. I don’t think going to purely downloaded games would be a bad thing. We’re still not quite there technologically because consumers aren’t going to put up with waiting several hours for a blue-ray sized game to download, but once we do, I think it will revolutionize how the industry sells games.

    If publishers hope to make any money, they’ll be forced to release games at a price point acceptable to consumers. If not enough people are buying a new game at $60, they’ll have to lower the price to recoup their losses and turn a profit.

    Of course, not being able to pass costs and losses along to distributors and retailers might actually deter publishers from pursuing the downloadable approach, even if it does squash the used market.

    This is a WAY down the road issue, though, given how few people have high speed internet.

  20. [quote comment=”10334″]maybe we’re all overreacting to this because how is playing AC2 with an uninterrupted connection going to be any different than playing an MMORPG?[/quote]

    while this is true mmo’s like World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XI are built to be played online, they have servers that are built specifically for those games. If I understand this correctly Ubisoftโ€™s Master server is not specifically built for this and is still connected to all of their other stuff. that means that if they add any information to there site or do some maintenance for the PETZ info site, your kicked out of the game. then again I could be wrong, and if they have set up a separate server that only handles Assassin’s Creed II than this may not be as much of a problem.

    oh and as stated on the article about Alan Wake not coming to the PC by the scholarly Julez, “our rage/shock/horror is justified!” ๐Ÿ˜€

  21. Lol Gadfly ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I don’t know why some of the posts talk about pirating like it’s a PC thing only? It’s very easy to crack a console or get a mod chip installed that allows you to play pirated games. It’s just that the PC gamers are of a slightly higher intelligence [:)] and often age group. Sure, there are some 12 year olds out there, but for the most part they can’t afford to keep up with PC Gaming costs and often their parents haven’t bought them a PC that’s suitable for gaming. It’s kind of nice actually.

    Don’t worry, if the PC gaming market gets squashed and they force everyone onto consoles, We’ll just start pirating console games and selling them to kids down the street for $15. They can’t stop pirating by any means, and I AM still going to buy AC2. That was always my plan. While I do like to pirate a game as a “rental” service, when a first iteration was great (yeah, get over it, I thought Assassin’s Creed was great), then purchasing the following games is almost automatic.

    Make good games, we’ll buy them. “Try before you buy”.

    I still think the most effective method to stop Pirating is the Chapters method. If I pay $10 bucks for the first hour or 2 of a game, I can get a good feel for it. I know this can screw up production of some games and can be a pain, but atleast that’s a common ground. I get my “rental”, and the devs can get more money out of me and gamersushi gets to talk about it. Win/Win/Win as Michael Scott would say.

  22. I could reply to Julez’ “intelligence” comment by saying that embracing the illegal distribution of software is part of PC gamer culture, the same culture that thinks it’s cute to write viruses that screw up the computers of average, unsuspecting people.

    But that would be a low blow.

    I’ll instead point out that most console users are not familiar with the concept of “cracking” or “modding” a console, nor would they have the technical expertise to do so on their own. It’s not that console gamers are necessarily stupid, it just means that they’re not accustomed to taking their system apart and soldering new parts onto the circuit boards like a hardcore PC user would do.

    But having said that, console piracy IS a problem as well. Some people even argue that piracy was what killed the Dreamcast (not true, but it’s an interesting take).

    As for paying $10 bucks for the first hour of a game, isn’t that what demos are for? Do they not make demos for the PC anymore?

  23. @ Zayven, I was being quite sarcastic about the intelligence stuff, just like we usually do when throwing fanboy talk around.

    And yes, that IS what Demo’s are for, but a lot of games don’t make demos anymore. We talked about it on an earlier thread. Games that have demos, I always check out. I love using Steam for it; I just queue up a bunch of demos to see what’s good to play. If a game doesnt have a demo, what’s to do? I don’t have that many friends that game on PC, they’re mostly all 360 and ps3 users, so I can’t borrow it. Renting PC games doesn’t happen anymore because everyone just burned copies.

    Then if I spend 60/70 on a PC game that isn’t great, there isn’t much of a “used game” market for it. Not to mention I buy most of my PC games through Steam. I NEED to try it before I spend that kind of money. Just the same way I buy great movies that I’ve already seen because the great ones are worth watching/playing again and again.

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