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MacGameStore DRM and Service


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#1 upset

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 01:29 AM

I just wanted to share my experience and thoughts on this subject, if any of you are interested

I recently purchased a game on macgamestore - Fate to be exact.
The very day that I purchased it, I tried to add a small mod to it from a fate web site - essentially it should change the graphics - by simply replacing my player save folder. It didn't work, and on top of that my Fate app completely stopped working. I tried to put it back as it was by replacing the old directory, but by then it was too late. Seems like the DRMWrapper of macgamestore was blocking the game because I'd modified it, even after putting it back.
Anyway, I downloaded the game again, reinstalled it, no luck.
I sent an email for help - its now a month later, and STILL no reply!
Luckily, I got it going by completely restoring my mac via Time Capsule (pretty extreme to get one little game going!!!!)

There is NO help on this subject anywhere on their site.
Their support is basically non-existant
Their DRM is obtrusive!!


And now, to top things off - one month later, for no reason (I have a completely vanilla install of Fate), the game just stops working! Once again, a DRM issue for some reason I cannot explain, as when I tried to delete the game, it wouldn't work because the DRMWrapper was using it. Basically I am left with a useless file that I paid for which doesn't work and for which I get no support.


Basically, I just wanted to say that I think (and hope) that the mac games market has a future, especially as mac increases in market share, but I do not think that future is helped by poor DRM implementations and even worse customer service!!!! Even EA, hated as they are with regards to DRM, answer customer emails regarding DRM etc. Others as well. The answers might not be what we want to hear, but the SUPPORT is there.

I think that if a publisher/distributer/whatever is unable to put in place the support structure to address DRM problems (or any basic email for that matter), then they SHOULD NOT put DRM on their products, and they certainly should not push their solution on other developers as a fully ready to go DRM solution - especially when it just stops working for no reason 1 month later!!

Thanks for those who read this. It'll probably be removed from the site, but I really wanted to say it!

#2 upset

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 01:40 AM

One last thing:
Now I have deleted the doorstop file of my game that I paid for, but somewhere on my mac (and I found files a bit all over the place) there are DRM files that have not been uninstalled.
This is not great - there should at least be a cleaner application for the DRM

#3 Frigidman™

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 08:24 AM

I doubt ANY store in the industry is going to offer up "help to mod and un-mod games". It is just foolish to think they would. If you have a problem with a game, contact the developers about it. Even then, most developers will say "sorry, you modded the game, we do not offer support for that kind of problem, its out of our hands". They may offer a way to re-install fresh, but thats about it.

I don't even believe its a DRM issue.

I am not speaking officially on the subject, I do not maintain nor control what goes on with mgs or products sold (I just make the website work). However from my viewpoint... this is not a problem with the macgamestore, or whatever DRM it has (which from my understanding, the MGS DRM is extremely flexible and clean).

-Fm [1oM7]
"I'm not incorruptible, I am so corrupt nothing you can offer me is tempting." - Alfred Bester


#4 the Battle Cat

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 09:17 AM

View Postupset, on January 13th 2009, 11:29 PM, said:

I recently purchased a game on macgamestore - Fate to be exact.
I bought fate from somewhere else and although my computer met the requirements, the game continually crashed not allowing me to progress any further.  Eventually I was told by someone close to the project that it would not run on a PowerPC. Fate is a critically flawed game.

View Postupset, on January 13th 2009, 11:29 PM, said:

Thanks for those who read this. It'll probably be removed from the site, but I really wanted to say it!
I'm not removing this or any post like this, but it is in the wrong forum.  We have an IMG Website Network Feedback that is in place especially for user feedback.  I'm moving it there.

Sorry Fate is giving you such grief, it beat up pretty badly on me too.
Gary Simmons
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#5 upset

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 09:49 AM

Thank you BattleCat. I actually had no issues with the game on Intel ... until now (ps: fate:ur seems to work under vmware fuction, but that's another story)

Frigidman:
Maybe I didn't explain my situation properly.

in fact, the 'mod' was simply replacing my save folder with another, and is largely irrelevant to the rest of my story. My email didn't even mention the mod, I just wanted help reinstalling the game. Two emails have been sent, not one reply.

I fixed it myself with a time machine restore, then played a vanilla game for one month. No mods. No problems.

Then, it just stopped working. The DRMWrapper pops up when I try to delete the game. I have a completely clean game on my mac, it just doesn't work now.

In any case, to be 'clean', I think there should be:

-support: ie replies to emails sent to them!
-a drm removal app, or at least a clean reinstaller. I can't see why this would be a problem if the user has purchased a game, to ask something that completely reinstalls it irrelevant of the DRM settings. Maybe this app could be protected itself and only work a few times, to stop abuse, but basically unless I get support, I have no way of getting the game I paid for to work.

Please note in the above, my game is not modded in any way or form. My time capsule restore was to a state before the 'mod' attempt - if you could even call it that, and the game has worked fine for a while since ...
And I still have not heard one word of response by email on the original issue, nor can I find any support forums or FAQs beyond "download it again and reinstall it" - which I've done ... it didn't work.

Anyway, I'm not searching for a reply to my problem per se ... I just think that with DRM there has to be customer support in place (note my email was just to reinstall the game, the very same day that I bought it!!!), and some sort of scrubber to clean your system up if things go wrong. Maybe everyone in the industry is the same, I don't know - this is the only time that I have ever had such an issue.


Basically, if DRM is a necessary evil, then it should be a minimal evil that does not stop paying customers from playing their _unmodded_ game. It also should be implemented with a clear approach to providing customer support as needed. I'm not a pirate - I bought the game!

#6 Tuncer (IMG)

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 10:17 AM

View Postupset, on January 14th 2009, 12:29 AM, said:

I just wanted to share my experience and thoughts on this subject, if any of you are interested

I recently purchased a game on macgamestore - Fate to be exact.
The very day that I purchased it, I tried to add a small mod to it from a fate web site - essentially it should change the graphics - by simply replacing my player save folder. It didn't work, and on top of that my Fate app completely stopped working. I tried to put it back as it was by replacing the old directory, but by then it was too late. Seems like the DRMWrapper of macgamestore was blocking the game because I'd modified it, even after putting it back.
Anyway, I downloaded the game again, reinstalled it, no luck.
I sent an email for help - its now a month later, and STILL no reply!
Luckily, I got it going by completely restoring my mac via Time Capsule (pretty extreme to get one little game going!!!!)

There is NO help on this subject anywhere on their site.
Their support is basically non-existant
Their DRM is obtrusive!!
And now, to top things off - one month later, for no reason (I have a completely vanilla install of Fate), the game just stops working! Once again, a DRM issue for some reason I cannot explain, as when I tried to delete the game, it wouldn't work because the DRMWrapper was using it. Basically I am left with a useless file that I paid for which doesn't work and for which I get no support.
Basically, I just wanted to say that I think (and hope) that the mac games market has a future, especially as mac increases in market share, but I do not think that future is helped by poor DRM implementations and even worse customer service!!!! Even EA, hated as they are with regards to DRM, answer customer emails regarding DRM etc. Others as well. The answers might not be what we want to hear, but the SUPPORT is there.

I think that if a publisher/distributer/whatever is unable to put in place the support structure to address DRM problems (or any basic email for that matter), then they SHOULD NOT put DRM on their products, and they certainly should not push their solution on other developers as a fully ready to go DRM solution - especially when it just stops working for no reason 1 month later!!

Thanks for those who read this. It'll probably be removed from the site, but I really wanted to say it!

All the issues you mentioned have nothing to do with the DRM. The saved game folder is outside of the game (and DRM), so replacing the save game folder may have been the issue.

Fate has issues with saved games. They often become corrupt. Unfortunately both the publisher (WildTangent) and Freeverse (the Mac porter) have not fixed these issues.

Bottom line...this is not a DRM issue.

Tuncer
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#7 upset

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 01:00 PM

Thank you for your reply Tuncer

To look further into this (not because I desperately love the game, more because I want to know) I restored the files from two locations from a December copy of my time machine copy of Fate.

I restored:
My Fate install directory
Users /Application Support/Fate  (wherein exists the saves)

Basically, apart from the DRM files that I know are littered everywhere else, we're talking about a full restore of the game to a date that I know was working ....

And ..

It doesn't work :(  note: there is no message about save game corruption or anything, double clicking just turns the hourglass a bit and then does nothing, but the DRMWrapper is open

The only thing left as a reason, as far as I can determine, is DRM ....   (once again: we are talking completely 'unmodded' vanilla install of Fate, restored to a point that I know worked)

#8 Tuncer (IMG)

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 04:10 PM

View Postupset, on January 14th 2009, 12:00 PM, said:

Thank you for your reply Tuncer

To look further into this (not because I desperately love the game, more because I want to know) I restored the files from two locations from a December copy of my time machine copy of Fate.

I restored:
My Fate install directory
Users /Application Support/Fate  (wherein exists the saves)

Basically, apart from the DRM files that I know are littered everywhere else, we're talking about a full restore of the game to a date that I know was working ....

And ..

It doesn't work :(  note: there is no message about save game corruption or anything, double clicking just turns the hourglass a bit and then does nothing, but the DRMWrapper is open

The only thing left as a reason, as far as I can determine, is DRM ....   (once again: we are talking completely 'unmodded' vanilla install of Fate, restored to a point that I know worked)

Email me at tuncer@insidemacgames.com and I'll set you up with access to the non-DRM version to see if it'll fix the issue.

Tuncer
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#9 upset

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 01:14 AM

Hello
Email sent yesterday (not from logged in address) ...

Thanks in advance, and hoping it fixes things. In either case, the answer will be interesting

#10 the Battle Cat

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 09:12 AM

Please keep us posted here in the forums as to the outcome.
Gary Simmons
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#11 upset

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 05:41 AM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on January 16th 2009, 09:12 AM, said:

Please keep us posted here in the forums as to the outcome.


Hi

I will - still waiting for the DRM free file for now!

For what it's worth, I bought Fate:Undiscovered Realms (the sequel) and it works perfectly in VMWare Fusion 2. Quite impressed really - I turned off the shadows to get better performance, and optimised the mouse for gaming, and other than that I can run it at 1440*900 in full screen mode perfectly.

I think it would run in Crossover Games as well, but it has a really strange installer that shows an HTML page, and even with IE6 installed in the bottle, I can't get the installer to work ...


Anyway, regarding Fate - as soon as I get a DRM free version I'll post back, but for now, Fate is not working on my mac, but FUR is.

#12 the Battle Cat

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 10:20 AM

Hey, at least nobody is rubbing your FUR the wrong way!
Gary Simmons
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#13 upset

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 11:51 AM

I don't make the acronyms ;)

#14 upset

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 03:21 AM

Hello

Just a little update:
I take back half of my title: the service of mgs is fine, I got the drm free file, and both battlecat and tuncer have been helpful.

Sadly, I have no proof of if it was a DRM issue or not, as I had to rebuild my mac because of stupidly installing monolingual, and lost the previous install of my game ...

Oh well, back to playing Fate ... and thanks

#15 the Battle Cat

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 10:36 AM

Hey at least your got your game working again and maybe you made a couple of new friends.  Don't be a stranger on the forums, there is a LOT of good gaming info and tips happening here.  Thanks for the update.
Gary Simmons
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