I posted this over in the Stardock forums on a big thread about Piracy and the "dying" PC gaming market.
How to "revive" PC gaming market:
1 - Make good games
2 - No DRM that punishes legit users
3 - ?????
4 - Profit
I'm pretty sure that software companies have to pay to license (OMG there's that word again) DRM software to implement in their own software. No DRM would mean more $$$ into their own pockets instead.
I have zero problem with having to put in a disc when i want to play a game. You gotta do it for consoles anyways (and i have my share of them). I also have no problem with putting in a key during installation (or sometime after like for SoaSE).
I see nothing wrong with combating "piracy", espically not in the short term while the game is still new and popular. However, there's a problem if it's done at the expense of legit users/buyers.
I've always liked how Epic does it with the Unreal Tournament series. They disable the disc check with a patch after the game has been on the market for a year or two (essentially after the majority of legit buyers has already purchased the game).
Actually, there's 2 things that would definitely revive the PC gaming market. First (and most importantly), make good games. They don't have to be the latest/greatest creations requiring bleeding edge hardware, they just have to be fun. Secondly, if retailers allowed opened software to be returned, you can be sure more people would be willing to purchase PC games. Returning a crappy game is very similar to returning other things you're dissatisfied with or disfunctional stuff. I know, i know, the argument is "But you can just buy a game, copy it, and return it". But if the game is genuinely good, most people won't feel the need to do so. I myself am hesitant to purchase games unless i've done a fair amount of research by reading multiple reviews and impressions.
All i can say is props to Stardock and Ironclad. They've got my $$$ and i'm tempted to buy 2 or 3 more copies for schnitzngigglez (well, to give to friends or to have handy if a LAN party is in order).
And now for a related lolcat: