Sims 3 To Be DRM-Free, Says EA

Having apparently taken a lesson from the Spore DRM fiasco, publisher Electronic Arts announced this week that The Sims 3 will be DRM-free when the game launches in June.

The Los Angeles Times reports that The Sims 3 will feature only serial number-based copy protection. EA exec Rod Humble said:

We feel like this is a good, time-proven solution that makes it easy for you to play the game without DRM methods that feel overly invasive or leave you concerned about authorization server access in the distant future.

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  1. Jfed says:


    There’s this now at the TS2 site:


    Author:  MaxoidDrea – Rank: Supreme Social SimView MySimPage Profile
    Date:  Mar-26-09 09:36 AM GMT (updated Mar-30-09 11:22 AM GMT)
    UPDATED: The Sims 3 Copy Protection
  2. Jfed says:

    The TS2 run is basically ended, and there’ve been price cuts here and there which may explain why those EPs show up on top ten lists.  And the player base is pretty huge anyway.

    And this is just a hunch, no empirical evidence or anything, just my own observation, but a portion of that player base really doesn’t go for anything else except Sims games.  One of the reasons it’s been such a best seller is because it appeals to an underserved market, another is that the thing just has very, very long legs (open-ended gameplay revolving around player imagination and creativity and a massive community making mods and custom content – if you’re into it, you can play the thing for years).

    Again, hunching, there’s a sizable chunk of that playerbase that, due to its isolation and rather unique makeup, doesn’t actually realize that there are ways to obtain the game other than *buying* it.  Which is why it was so dangerous for EA to use problem-child DRM like Securom and claim it was an anti-piracy measure.  When paying customers had problems due to this anti-piracy measure, it just opened their eyes to alternative ways of obtaining the game. 

    With no satisfactory resolution from EA for these issues, many, at the very least, sought out cracks to run their purchased games to be free of Securom interference (for some it was actually necessary for them to be able to use what they bought).  Some were angry enough to go whole hog and stick it to EA.  Some are suing.  Some, like me, just don’t buy anymore and do without, which sucks – the game’s been a favored pasttime for going on a decade for me.  But I can’t justify the expenditure anymore.

    There’s plenty that are still buying, though.  They don’t care, don’t know, or buy and crack – ‘completeists’ that want to own the whole series.  There’s nothing out there giving the game any competition; the audience is locked in.  EA knows this, top 10 lists show this, but it’s also an audience that’s wising up, in good ways and not such good ways.

  3. ZippyDSMlee says:

    The DRM is there you jsut get no online activations, sicrom is still in it and after you update it there will be mroe of it most likly.


    Gore,Violence,Sexauilty,Fear,Emotion these are but modes of transportation of story and thought, to take them from society you create a society of children and nannys, since adults are not required.

  4. Ryno says:

    I’m just curious: how much would someone have to have spent if they bought the Sims 2 and the countless expansions and whatnot that have come out since it was released? This is assuming they bought them when they came out and paid full price.

    I ask because it seems that every time I see a top 10 list there’s a new expansion for it listed. That’s a lot of time and money to give up for a new version, MMOG-level actually.

  5. sqlrob says:

    It is *NOT* DRM free. It is online activation free.

    Although better, it still does not imply anything about the quality. Starforce did not require online activation.


  6. ZippyDSMlee says:

    I love you mate!

    I never "got" the sims or GTA for that matter.

    Gore,Violence,Sexauilty,Fear,Emotion these are but modes of transportation of story and thought, to take them from society you create a society of children and nannys, since adults are not required.

  7. Torven says:

    The Sims was also the second most pirated game last year, which is rather impressive considering it is more than 4 years old.

  8. DarkSaber says:

    I don’t, I bloody hate it.


    I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

  9. nighstalker160 says:

    There’s an argument there. But when you look at the Sims numbers and the demographics of who plays it I think you find its a much more widespread game than even Spore.

    I mean, EVERYONE plays the Sims.

  10. JC says:

    I don’t think you understand… can’t someone inform Dennis he may have misunderstood the words from the EA exec? He states they won’t use "certain forms of invasive drm" , despite the fact their EADM thing is one of the worst forms of it. Data mining at your expense, it is still DRM, they just won’t go as overboard… I hope.

  11. AuntySocial says:

    You are more than likely correct in your analysis of the situation.  On TS2 official site they have posted Mr. Humble’s spiel.  It also comes up on TS2 launcher.  I am still not sure if I want to buy 3.  If I do, I will wait to see how it goes for those who have their panties in a bunch over it.



    Insanity has its toll. Please have exact change.

  12. Jfed says:

    – EA exec Rod Humble has stated that TS3 will not use online authentication nor limited installs. He said nothing about Securom whatsoever. But –
    – EA employees have repeatedly posted on the official TS2 site that Securom will not be used on game disks.
    – Currently, the EA Download Manager (digital distro program) will install Securom to ‘protect’ digitally downloaded games and items purchased from the TS2Store.
    – Currently, when preordering TS3 via EAStore, one is presented w/a statement saying the game uses Securom.
    – Currently, the EULA for TS3 at states that all updates to TS3 will require installation of the EADM software, which currently installs Securom. Also –
    – that same EULA describes ingame advertising and info collection that will be enabled in TS3, which a game producer had stated some weeks ago was not going to be used.

    Only the statement that disks will not include Securom surprised me as a longtime TS2 player. Combined with the rest, as of right now, it’s just the usual ‘hey! now we’re treating you 10% less crappily than we did yesterday!’ type of foot-dragging we’ve unfortunately come to expect from EA regarding their DRM.

    [Kind of reminds me of their withdrawal of the ‘authenticate every 10 days or your game stops working’ hooraw with their release last year, Mass Effect for PC – oh look! we’re being benevolent! now you’re just stuck with online auth only and 3 lonely activation limits you won’t know you’re using up until we tell you to buy another copy of the game! see? we DO care! kind of…]

    Who knows what the EULAs, etc. for TS3 will say tomorrow; lucid communication from EA is not currently a strong point.

  13. ZenAndNow says:

    Ah but the game itself doesn’t have DRM.

    It will just merely auto-install software to "download the latest patch" and via said patch/downloader will the DRM be applied post install!

    Yay! No lies, just obsfucating the truth!

  14. Michael Chandra says:

    So, if is right, that basically means EA is lying about this?

    In a press-release?

    Have they completely lost their mind?!

  15. JC says:

    I won’t trust the word of EA for their statement on this, I rather trust Reclaim your game. They are actual Sim fans and know which games have DRM on it when it comes to EA.

    DRM won’t go away, we’d need government intervention and I think that’s risky. I’m amazed GP didn’t post Stardock’s idea of their form of "DRM". I’m skeptical of Stardock’s "Goo" thing but hell, it may work and work well. I haven’t seen Stardock fail yet, but I see publishers not liking Stardock’s idea because of the "RESELL" option available.

  16. Bennett Beeny says:

    We’ve heard all these assurances before.  Usually it’s just the first salvo in a marketing campaign that tries to downplay the hideously consumer-unfriendly DRM that they have installed in the game.

  17. Aliasalpha says:

    An EA exec talking sense?


    Whats next, Jack Thompson apologising, researching his arguments and using spellcheck??


  18. Alex says:

    I’d argue that Spore is a MUCH more casual game than The Sims…

    I’m not under the affluence of incohol as some thinkle peep I am. I’m not half as thunk as you might drink. I fool so feelish I don’t know who is me, and the drunker I stand here, the longer I get.

  19. nighstalker160 says:

    Let’s not be fooled here. EA is doing this because of the MASSIVE CASUAL popularity of the Sims.

    They’re only doing this because there are far, far more people who are going to be pissed off if some crappy DRM system destroys their computers.

    I guarantee you that this is not a new trend but merely a bowing to liability potential.

    Additionally, EA figures that the casual audience that makes up the majority of The Sims purchasers is NOT going to pirate.

    "Nah, we don’t need to DRM ‘The Sims’ none of those gamer pirates play the thing. The people who buy this won’t know how to pirate it."

    It’s symptomatic of their mentality: hardcore gamer = pirate.

    They don’t get that the majority of pirates would NEVER purchase the game legit. The people actually cracking the DRM aren’t doing it to get a free copy of the game (altough I guess someone actually has to get the game to rip) they’re doing it TO CRACK THE DRM.

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