After having tried for hours to download the Football Manager 2012 demo on Friday night on my laptop (I eventually got it working on my desktop the next morning), I have huge sympathies for those complaining about Sports Interactive’s decision to force the game to actually require Steam to play it, no matter if you have gone out and bought a physical copy. I am not particularly a technical person when it comes to games and for years I would simply walk into my local shop, hand over the cash for the latest Football Manager addition and on my way I would be to winning trophies with Newcastle United. (yeah, right).
But this year I can’t do that. This year after I have purchased my game I must activate it via Steam and all the fiddliness and registrations that go with it to prove the fact that I had bought the game with my hard earned money and didn’t illegally download it. Why am I, the honest gamer, being asked to do all this to prove my purchase?
Can you imagine buying a Blu-ray disc and then having to do the same before viewing it?
Sports Interactive studio director Miles Jacobson recently told Eurogamer the reasoning behind the controversial move was because only one in every five people who played Football Manager 2009 had actually bought a copy, the rest had pirated it and that “the numbers of people downloading torrents from public sites rose massively for both FM10 and FM11″.
A shocking stat. If we say Football Manager 2012 costs £24.99 currently, that would mean Sports Interactive would lose an extra £100 in potential revenue everytime somebody purchased one copy in store.
Jacobson explains that although it’s not ideal for Football Manager to have this piracy blocking Steam function, we don’t live in an ideal world!
“I would love to have no DRM on our games… I’d also love to not have to have locks on my home, or a burglar alarm, or locks on my car. How good would a life without keys be I’d also love to have no insurance, either at home, or at the studio. Or a security guard at the office.
The unfortunate reality is that as long as there are dishonest people in the world, you will need locks, and you’ll need insurance. As long as there are people out there who want to pirate, there will be a need for DRM.”
You can read the full interview with Jacobson at Eurogamer.
Football Manager 2012 demo is out NOW and retails October 21st for MAC and PC.