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Defunct DRM locks MacOS players out of Metal Gear Rising

Defunct DRM locks MacOS players out of Metal Gear Rising

Metal Gear Rising is no longer playable on MacOS after DRM support drops.

Platinum Games’ slashing spin-off was ported to PC in January 2014, with a MacOS version releasing later that year. The DRM system attached to the Mac edition required a connection to an external server before play.

Unfortunately, it seems Transgaming - the company responsible for the port - no longer operates in video games. The company became Findev in 2016, and now operates in real estate financing.

With the DRM server shut down, Mac copies of the hack n’ slash spinoff can no longer verify their legitimacy. The game has likely been unplayable since March 2017, but this issue came to light thanks to a Reddit user posting yesterday.

The post reads: "There's no reason why this game can't run in its current format for the people who bought it. There's also no one to make a patch, and users who bought this game legally are stuck having to resort to pirating a copy if they want to play it”

The situation once again raises concerns over the implementation of DRM systems like this in games. While developers need ways to protect their products, this situation highlights the backfire potential - paying customers are being punished, while pirated copies are unaffected.

Valve have since removed MacOS from supported platforms on the game’s store page.


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Staff Writer

Natalie Clayton is an Edinburgh-based freelance writer and game developer. Besides PCGamesInsider and Pocketgamer.biz, she's written across the games media landscape and was named in the 2018 GamesIndustry.biz 100 Rising Star list.

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mech mouse
"DRM systems like this"

All DRM systems have a greater negative affect of legitimate users than they do on illegal ones.

Server based system like this die when the network or server goes.
Software based system die when technology or operating systems change.
Systems like Steam remove or restrict legitimate uses, such as concurrent use of different software on different machines.

The affect of Piracy on sales is also a highly dubious one. If anything the early success of Denuvo is proof positive of the negligible effect of piracy, since none of the titles showed significant increase in sales.

At best DRM is used to placate investors that really should know better, a more cynical view is DRM's primary use is to restrict legitimate users. The later certainly makes sense when you consider account based or limited activation DRM killed of the PC second hand games market. That, along with absolute control of pricing, would have been many times more lucrative than any imaginary return on reducing piracy.

Non-hardware based DRM is snake-oil.

DRM has allowed companies to remove some basic ownership rights and its high time they were returned.