Neocolonialism and DRM

Neocolonialism will be DRM-free.

Currently, it is not. You need to login to the game to do anything–singleplayer, LAN, or multiplayer. This, it turns out, is a rather good way to go about closed beta testing. But my original plan had been to keep this format upon release, and make the game clients freely available on my website (because without an account, they are useless).

I’m changing that plan. Starting with the next release, you will not need to login for offline games. Beta testers will still need to enter their account name and passwords to reach the download link. When the game is released, you will be able to download the client from either the Humble Store or Amazon upon purchasing the game. (I am right now looking into the best way to deliver updates.) You will create an account on my website using an access key you obtain upon purchase, and you will use that account to play online if you so choose.

Removing DRM was not an easy decision, and I really hope it’s for the best. As the theme of the game may indicate, I have personal misgivings about DRM–I don’t like how much mistrust they imply, or how arrogant developers are when they think that their security systems will still be operational decades from now. I’ve talked to friends as well as online fans and they’ve also expressed their doubts including DRM into Neocolonialism.

DRM has been very, very tempting because I am a one-person studio and I’m going to need all the sales that I can get if I want to keep doing this full-time. I do not know if removing DRM and making singleplayer mode so easily-pirated will ultimately generate more sales, or less. But a DRM-free Neocolonialism is a more moral Neocolonialism (ha!) and hopefully taking a higher ground on this will eventually make for a better decision.


In other news, Neocolonialism is only a month away from being released! On a technical level, the game is almost ready–I’m mostly now working on polishing some odd phase transitions and some quirks in the Windows version.

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