Not all video game developers see Digital Rights Management (DRM) as a reasonable solution to piracy, particularly when over-bearing copy protection methods make for a greater hassle for for legitimate customers than an obstacle for pirates that may very-well have never have played the game if they had to pay for it anyway.
Poland-based developer CD Projekt RED are among those that think otherwise and today they've put their money where their mouth is, announcing
that the digital-download version of The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings to be sold via their sister company GoG.com, will be DRM-free!
“DRM is not an effective way to combat piracy,” said Managing Director Guillaume Rambourg. “Our main concern has always been the user’s experience with the titles they purchase, and DRM effects that experience in a negative way, which is why we’ve been absolutely thrilled at the opportunity to distribute CD Projekt RED’s incredible RPG. We’re also pleased that we’ve been able to stick to our guns with The Witcher 2 and release it DRM free to all of our customers around the world.”
GoG.com -- an online retailer for "Good old Games" -- has a no DRM policy, meaning they will not retail any games through the site that include DRM protections. They've carved their niche by offering a wide stable of popular classic games from years past, so The Witcher 2 being a brand-new upcoming game isn't exactly appropriate to their catalogue, but given GoG's ties to CD Projekt, it's presumably the only outlet in a position to offer a DRM-free solution.
With recent reports of users losing access to their purchased games for violating online terms of service agreements, it's refreshing to see a popular game developer actually offering the consumer a more respectful "honor system" approach -- being confident that the quality of their upcoming game will be enough to make people want to pay for it.
Freedom from DRM is worth supporting, so if you were considering ordering The Witcher 2 online, we recommend going for the GoG.com option and doing your part for the cause. Pre-Orders are free and now open at http://www.gog.com/tw2
. There's also no regional pricing disparity on GoG.com, who are offering The Witcher 2 for a worldwide price of USD$44.99.
You can find out more details on The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings in AusGamers recent hands-on preview
and our interview with Senior Producer Tomasz Gop
The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings is due for online retail on May 17 2011 (presumably Central European Time), with the Australian retail release following on May 19th 2011.