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From DRM Apology to Holy Robin in Arkham 2, Batman! - News Roundup 9th March 2010

Jonathan Lester
apple, Batman: Arkham Asylum, DRM, News, Portal, Robin, Ubisoft, Valve

Holy Arkham Asylum 2, Batman!

From DRM Apology to Holy Robin in Arkham 2, Batman! - News Roundup 9th March 2010

The IMDB listing for Batman: Arkham Asylum 2 suggests that the Boy Wonder will be making an appearance. Vincent Martella has been slated to provide the voice acting (fresh from his work in Final Fantasy XIII). Whether or not he'll be a playable character is not yet known, though it would open up the opportunity for cooperative play.

Mark Hamill will reprise his excellent role as the Joker, and will be joined by fellow silver screen star Bruce Greenwood as Two-Face. These two veteran actors should provide some serious clout to Rocksteady Studio's next project. [via Gossipgamers]

Steam and Valve Back the Mac

From DRM Apology to Holy Robin in Arkham 2, Batman! - News Roundup 9th March 2010

Usually, the words "Mac" and "Steam" are only said in the same sentence when you're getting your jacket dry-cleaned. However, Valve have announced that their digital distribution network is headed to Apple's personal computer platform along with their full range of gaming titles. It's about time that a games company showed some genuine love to the Mac crowd- after all, it'll give them something to do between pretending to write poetry in Starbucks and picking out new berets. Only joking, folks.

According to the press release, this new Apple  functionality comes with a whole range of nifty new features. Both Mac and PC users will share the same multiplayer lobbies (allowing for cross-platform play); and purchased games can be downloaded on both PC and Mac with no extra charge. The most interesting new enhancement Steamplay, that takes advantage of Steam's cloud processing capability to remotely save checkpoint progress and quicksaves- meaning that you can start playing on your Macbook and finish the level on your PC desktop.

Portal 2 will be the first simultaneous PC and Mac launch for a Valve title. [Valve]

Ubisoft Explain Server Shutdown

From DRM Apology to Holy Robin in Arkham 2, Batman! - News Roundup 9th March 2010

Ubisoft's DRM servers suffered a major blackout over the weekend that left thousands of Assassin's Creed 2 and Silent Hunter V players unable to connect (and thus play their legally-purchased games). A spokesman was therefore quick to leap to the defence of their draconian digital rights management protocol, offering what could honestly be the least sincere apology I've ever seen.

"Ubisoft would like to apologize to anyone who could not play Assassin's Creed 2 or Silent Hunter 5 yesterday. Servers were attacked and while the servers did not go down, service was limited. 95% of players were not affected, but a small group of players attempting to open a game session did receive denial of service errors. All players with an open session during the attack were not affected."

Whilst Ubisoft admitted that their servers were vulnerable, they were also quick to deny the existence of any playable hacked version that bypasses the DRM.

"We also confirm that, at this time, no valid cracked version of either Silent Hunter 5 or Assassin's Creed II are available"

Turns out that submarines aren't vulnerable to pirates just yet! However, don't lose sight of the fact that the hackers only attacked the servers...  Ubisoft's own DRM protocol stopped gamers from simply playing offline. This situation is fast becoming a publicity nightmare for the company, and they'll soon have to decide between radically improving the system or scrapping it altogether. Or to stop developing for the PC, which may prove to be the most viable (and profitable) option considering the prevalence of piracy. [via The Guardian]

Add a comment5 comments
Gunn  Mar. 9, 2010 at 19:11

I don't get why Valve won't release for the PS3, there is no way they will sell as many games on the Mac as they would on the PS3. While it's not a huge issue for me as I can play on my PC, I would still consider getting some games on the PS3.

Jonathan Lester  Mar. 9, 2010 at 20:39

Actually, Valve are currently looking into developing for the PS3. Not only that, rumours suggest that they're recruiting a team of PS3 specialists to ensure parallel development of their key titles- or at least a decent port.

Don't worry. Valve loves everyone, as well as their money. Cutting themselves off from a huge potential fanbase doesn't make good business sense.

Matt Gardner  Mar. 9, 2010 at 20:43

Orange Box tanked on the PS3.

Mind you, that's because Valve ended up outsourcing some of the publishing to EA, who managed to somehow wreck the framerate.

Gunn  Mar. 9, 2010 at 21:51

So why not release Portal 2 for PS3

evil_gn0me  Mar. 10, 2010 at 00:19

Isn't this a huge sign of how to run one games company compared to the other? Look at Ubisoft getting fuck all from the pc market but contempt and shitty sales
And another that has made a fantastic move. Don't dismiss the mac crowd readily there's a fair old few of them out there, the thing is there's never been the market for games on a mac thats why games never turned up, i think valve may be the first company to solve this problem with making the online cross platform lobby's. Actually any one know if linux has steam with cross platform lobbys ?
Btw I don't really like macs all that much.



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