Electronic Arts has come back into the spotlight once again for Origin and not in a very good way. The digital distribution service that’s required to play Battlefield Hardline works as a DRM middle man between EA and gamers and it’s giving hardware enthusiasts a lot of heartache due to a hardware configuration limitation implemented into the software.
Blues spotted an article from Guru3D that laments the restrictions on Battlefield Hardline that prevents games from accessing the game for 24 hours if the hardware is changed one too many times in a single day while trying to play the game. Guru3D author Hilbert Hagedoorn woefully decries the DRM method, writing…
“Here’s what EAs DRM is doing, EA don’t just verify the number of PCs you work on slash use, nope .. they dare to monitor hardware changes inside your PC now, which I am sure is a privacy breach on many levels. So once we insert new hardware (CPU / mobo or graphics cards) the hardware id # hash changes and if that happens a couple of times they are rendering your activation invalid. From what we now have learned, you get to have 5 hardware changes per license. Use them up and access to the game will be blocked for 24 hours per activation.”
This is a rather unfortunate thing for paying consumers. I mean, you pay for a product; you want to buy some new hardware and test out some settings; you make some modifications and run the benchmarks on a game a couple of times until you settle on a setup that suits your needs; you go to play the game and bam! You’re hit with the DRM schlong stopper.
I did happen to reach out to Electronic Arts to find out if they have any means of patching this out. I mean, it was a mistake that the DMCA notices were sent out for Dying Light’s mods, so maybe EA will have an olive branch for this unfortunate scenario… ?
Well, Hagedoorn is completely forlorn and disillusioned to the whole ordeal and has opted to give EA a piece of his mind, saying…
“[…] guys we understand your piracy and cheating/hacking concerns, but STOP pissing off your user-base with this STUPID DRM non-sense. Christ almighty, at what point will the industry realize they are killing the PC game market themselves ?”
Upset almost seems like an understatement.
I’ll update the article if EA decides to respond. In the meantime, Battlefield Hardline is available for home consoles and PC, but with the recent DRM escapades only sadomasochists are probably interested in the PC version of the game.