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New Deux Ex game for iOS hobbles gameplay if device is jailbroken

post #1 of 80
Thread Starter 
Gamers looking to play the first-person shooter Deus Ex are in for a surprise if they download the game on a jailbroken device: its developer has hobbled their copies in order to make sure they can't fully run.

in excelsis


Released on Wednesday, the new Deus Ex game for iOS is already receiving some complaints from users that have jailbroken their devices and paid for the game. Square Enix's product page for the game doesn't warn users that they will not fully be able to play the game if their devices are jailbroken, and the title has a number of negative reviews pointing out this fact.

After the game's initial cutscenes and a movement tutorial, jailbreakers will encounter a screen informing them that they cannot fire their weapons since they are on jailbroken devices. Jailbreaking is legal, but it may void a user's warranty, and game and app publishers are wary of jailbroken machines since the process makes it possible to side-load pirated apps without paying for them.

One hallmark of the Deux Ex series is the flexibility in play style enabled by the games' design. It is conceivable that a player could stealthily move throughout the whole game without firing weapon, but only if the player can make it past the first stage, which appears to require the use of at least one weapon.

Non-jailbroken users can download Deus Ex: The Fall from the iTunes App Store for $7. The 1.6GB game requires an iPad 3 or above, iPad mini, iPhone 4S or above, or an iPod touch 5 or above. Square Enix notes that iPad 2 and iPhone 4 support is coming soon.
post #2 of 80
Awesome protection technique. Hope other developers catch on.

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Apple increments product features one bite at a time...hence the logo. Want the next big thing? You're gonna have to pick another fruit from the Apple Tree.

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post #3 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by JBlongz View Post

Awesome protection technique. Hope other developers catch on.

I like it but they really do need to put a notice on the product page. That would prevent negative reviews because then anyone who complains will just be pointing out how stupid they are for not reading the requirements before buying it.

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post #4 of 80
Given that jailbroken devices are completely unsupported by Apple, this is a good move by software developers. I can see two benefits from this. One, cutting down on piracy, and two, cutting down on the developers' support costs for people running even legitimately purchased apps on compromised devices.
post #5 of 80
Yeah, App Store ratings are sometimes skewed by angry mobs. I usually don't rate apps when they just do what they're supposed to.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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post #6 of 80

What a load of crap.  DRM that screws paying customers should not be supported.

post #7 of 80
People aren't doing anything illegal by jailbreaking. It's really poor form not to warn people.
post #8 of 80
No doubt to be patched or quick fixed by some member of the jailbreak community. I don't really agree with removing features because of a jailbroken host. If the user has legitimately paid for the game, jailbroken or not, the game should just work. Piracy is another issue altogether.

Basically, just because one chooses to jailbreak their phone, that does not mean by default that they're a piracy advocate in anyway.
post #9 of 80

While Apple might not like it, there is nothing illegal about jailbreaking a phone—I have done it since the iPhone 3G and have NEVER downloaded a pirate app. Many people jb for valid reasons—in my case, my carrier SoftBank refuses to support IMEI unlocks even on out-of-contract iPhones, so I am forced to jb and unlock so I can use other carriers' SIMs when I travel abroad to avoid SoftBank's outrageous roaming charges.  While the developer is fully within its rights to hobble a game on a jailbroken phone, they should inform people of this limitation before purchase and offer a full refund for people caught with a hobbled game because of the omitted warning.

post #10 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichL View Post

People aren't doing anything illegal by jailbreaking. It's really poor form not to warn people.

 

Not true.  Jailbreaking is illegal if you jailbreak for purposes that are themselves illegal.  The number one reason for jailbreaking today remains the downloading of stolen copies of games, which is obviously what this is intended to protect against.  

 

The number of folks that jailbroke their device so they could use some obscure settings app and then *legally* bought this game and were stymied by the protection is going to be so tiny as to be not worth bothering about. Add to that the very low popularity of jailbreaking in the first place and it's easy to see that almost everyone that is being hit by this popup is almost certainly going to be a thief.  

 

That being said I agree with others that there should be notification on the page where you buy the game, that this is a restriction.  I would bet that there probably is actually since most of those complaining wouldn't have actually purchased it from the app store in the first place.  Also, anyone who legally purchased the game will certainly be able to get a refund.  

 

Again, I would bet that this will amount to five bucks or so of refunds. 1smile.gif

post #11 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by plankton View Post

While Apple might not like it, there is nothing illegal about jailbreaking a phone—I have done it since the iPhone 3G and have NEVER downloaded a pirate app...

 

But a lot of people do. Huge numbers of people are playing pirated games, and jailbreaking is how they do it. At some point, devs have to try and fund some kind of solution.

post #12 of 80
Just checked, the App Store does not tell in the description that it will not play fully on a Jailbroken Device.
NoahJ
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #13 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by plankton View Post

Many people jb for valid reasons—in my case, my carrier SoftBank refuses to support IMEI unlocks even on out-of-contract iPhones, so I am forced to jb and unlock so I can use other carriers' SIMs when I travel abroad

Unlocking is a separate thing from jailbreaking. You can buy unlocked iPhones without them being jailbroken.

Regardless of what individuals use jailbreaking for, the very fact that it's jailbroken allows the user to install a stolen copy of the game and this is an easy way of protecting against it.

The game looks pretty good:



Some Android users are upset that they can't play it yet:

http://kotaku.com/sorry-console-pc-gamers-but-the-mobile-deus-ex-is-damn-736609646

"No need to apologize to us, they'll be more than sorry for all of us when they see the sales numbers. Deus Ex isn't big enough to be a big mover on a limited platform. MAYBE if it was on Android, Windows Phone, Vita and or 3DS."

"It's coming to Andriod devices "soon", if you'll care to take a look at the end of the article."

"That's actually my bad. it was originally announced as only an iPhone game. I guess we'll see then. It might not do too badly then. I just couldn't see it doing very well on just one mobile market vs. The majority of the market (Android and Apple combined.)"

Yeah, it'll do much better in sales once it reaches all those laggy Android devices in about 6 months once they get it to work properly on all the different models and then just end up supporting the Samsung Galaxy. It's funny how the Android crowd is sort of like the Windows crowd but this time round, they bitch about Apple because they're the only one getting good software support. It used to be Windows users put down Apple's computers because of a lack of software support.

They haven't even said a timeframe for the Android version. It would be funny if they end up cancelling their plans to port it over like many developers before them. The internet rage will be unbearable. Funny though.

On the bright side, they can play with a Deus Ex theme until then:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ramazor.theme.freedea&hl=en

It's a shame the iOS controllers aren't out yet. This would have been a great title to launch with them. Same with Knights of the Old Republic (another iOS exclusive).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee 
Also, anyone who legally purchased the game will certainly be able to get a refund.

Very true, most reviews seem to be positive so far.

PS for anyone who doesn't know already, the Steam Summer Sale has started. They have 700+ Mac games in there.
post #14 of 80
I can see the need to use unpleasant measures to protect a game that depends on servers, since pirates can sometimes destroy such a game and put it out of business. This game is single-player, though.

But I can understand why they did it. Jailbreakers are a vocal minority, but a minority nonetheless--and many (most I'd assume) are honest, but a lot of them ARE pirates. (More than will to admit it: what's even easier than piracy? Lying about piracy!)

Would have been nice to give them advance warning all the same.

JB at your own risk...
post #15 of 80
I don't mind any app developer doing this, it is their own choice. If a person wants to pirate it, they will. Someone will crack this within 24 hours just to have their name next to the .ipa download. If letting a user get further in a game bogs their servers, then let them prevent users that may possibly be stealing the game and causing more financial losses from using the game.

That being said, if it doesn't bog their servers, what does this solve?

Do you really believe that a bunch of users are going to return their jailbroken iPhones to stock to play this game? That is more of a hassle than to wait for the crack, and you are only upsetting users who actually purchased the game.

I know many people pirate apps with a jailbreak, or some only pirate for a short bit and then purchase the same games after a cellular upgrade or ios update or so (I'm guilty of this) and don't even play half the games they ever pirated. I generally just do it for tweaks such as navigate with tomtom, browser chooser, tetherme(Saves damn $30 a month for the same data!), and torch. SBS settings, grabby, and other small tweaks are awesome, but I believe those 3 tweaks make some simple things extremely pleasant to do.
post #16 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

 

Not true.  Jailbreaking is illegal if you jailbreak for purposes that are themselves illegal.  The number one reason for jailbreaking today remains the downloading of stolen copies of games, which is obviously what this is intended to protect against.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

The number of folks that jailbroke their device so they could use some obscure settings app and then *legally* bought this game and were stymied by the protection is going to be so tiny as to be not worth bothering about. Add to that the very low popularity of jailbreaking in the first place and it's easy to see that almost everyone that is being hit by this popup is almost certainly going to be a thief.  

 

Do you have any data to back up that claim? I've jailbroken my iPhone in the past to use a tethering app but I have no idea about other people's behavior. 

post #17 of 80
and the garden gets smaller and smaller...
post #18 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronbo View Post

 

But a lot of people do. Huge numbers of people are playing pirated games, and jailbreaking is how they do it. At some point, devs have to try and fund some kind of solution.

There are a number of ways to combat piracy. An easy non-DRM solution is to merely release frequently useful patches that makes it annoying for the pirate to wait for a new update to become available in back channels and manually update. Even cheesier is to avoid updates through the App Store by downloading smaller data files and assets online requiring a login account. You can do frequent ninja updates while the game is launching which will make a pain in the rear for pirates, but legit users will hardly notice anything aside from a one-time cached login (plus account creation).

post #19 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by rain View Post

and the garden gets smaller and smaller...

It just looks small because of all the good games in it. Android is like a deserted wasteland - wide open but nothing fun to do except talk about this spec and that spec and how many minutes have passed since it got all laggy and had to be rebooted or rooted or replaced or which task killer is the best to save the battery dying in a couple of hours.
post #20 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Negafox View Post

There are a number of ways to combat piracy. An easy non-DRM solution is to merely release frequently useful patches that makes it annoying for the pirate to wait for a new update to become available in back channels and manually update. Even cheesier is to avoid updates through the App Store by downloading smaller data files and assets online requiring a login account. You can do frequent ninja updates while the game is launching which will make a pain in the rear for pirates, but legit users will hardly notice anything aside from a one-time cached login (plus account creation).

That solution does not stop pirates. If the game is functional why should not having the latest version bother a pirate to the point of not playing the game? Further, how do you figure that the game contacting a server with a login isn't a DRM solution?

Also, I'm pretty sure Apple does not allow apps to update outside the App Store. That would be essentially side loading apps.
post #21 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by iaeen View Post


That solution does not stop pirates. If the game is functional why should not having the latest version bother a pirate to the point of not playing the game? Further, how do you figure that the game contacting a server with a login isn't a DRM solution?

Also, I'm pretty sure Apple does not allow apps to update outside the App Store. That would be essentially side loading apps.

My former solution was non-DRM. And you would be surprised, pirates tend to be obsessed with wanting the latest version. Think Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft Office pirates. They tend to go to great lengths at times to get their software patched that it is almost not worth the time and effort. Patching in small features is a common tactic with game companies to combat piracy. My later example is DRM, you are correct.

 

You can update data files like assets, but you cannot update the binary.

post #22 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

The number one reason for jailbreaking today remains the downloading of stolen copies of games

 

Citation needed.

post #23 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

Not true.  Jailbreaking is illegal if you jailbreak for purposes that are themselves illegal.

Not true. Jailbreaking is not illegal.

What you just said is akin to, 'it's illegal to own a car if the sole purpose of that car is to assist with bank robberies.' The logic doesn't fly.

There are so many innocent and good reasons people JB. This is poor form from the developer.
post #24 of 80
This is idiotic. Instead pirates can just pirate the game and avoid the developer's crippling measures. In fact, I'd say this encourages piracy rather than combats it.
post #25 of 80
What I'd like to know, as a developer myself, is how they detect that the device is jailbroken.
post #26 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Totems View Post

No doubt to be patched or quick fixed by some member of the jailbreak community. I don't really agree with removing features because of a jailbroken host. If the user has legitimately paid for the game, jailbroken or not, the game should just work. Piracy is another issue altogether.

Basically, just because one chooses to jailbreak their phone, that does not mean by default that they're a piracy advocate in anyway.

 

No, but it is the first step to piracy.

 

If you want to experiment with having things your own way, make your own game.

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post #27 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by frxntier View Post


Not true. Jailbreaking is not illegal.

What you just said is akin to, 'it's illegal to own a car if the sole purpose of that car is to assist with bank robberies.' The logic doesn't fly.

There are so many innocent and good reasons people JB. This is poor form from the developer.

 

It voids the warranty, for example if Samsung detects the wrong binaries on a Galaxy they will void the warranty.

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post #28 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by DroidFTW View Post

What a load of crap.  DRM that screws paying customers should not be supported.

Apple is pretty good about refunds in the App Store. If anyone paid for this app and couldn't run it on their jail broken iOS device, just ask for a refund. I agree that no paying customer should get screwed.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #29 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichL View Post

 

 

Do you have any data to back up that claim? I've jailbroken my iPhone in the past to use a tethering app but I have no idea about other people's behavior. 

 

So you chose the wrong carrier.

 

My carrier allowed tethering since day one when I updated iOS on my old iPhone 3G.

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post #30 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by rain View Post

and the garden gets smaller and smaller...

Nope, number of quality app titles worth paying for is growing. It's a sustainable app economy, not a magnet for malware and content piracy. So much for your "smaller and smaller theory."

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #31 of 80
Quote:

Not true.  Jailbreaking is illegal if you jailbreak for purposes that are themselves illegal. 

 

This is not how the law works.

post #32 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoahJ View Post

Just checked, the App Store does not tell in the description that it will not play fully on a Jailbroken Device.

 

 

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post #33 of 80

I wish to God they would do this for Modern War by Gree. It is consistently on the top 10 money earners for both the Apple and Google play stores for revenue. This game is over run with hackers that are able to use a hack on jailbroken iPhones and on rooted Android phones. For anyone here that is a Modern War addict like me I am sure you have run across guys with a 8 million A/D score with hundreds of limited edition units at 10,000 attack scores each in their inventory. I hope this does catch on since hackers destroy the fun in games. 

 

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post #34 of 80
There are other ways to do this instead of punishing paying customers that want
To add some features to the phone that apple choses to leave out and then finally
Releases some features years later. Look at copy & paste, how long did that take?
MMS, multitasking/backgrounder, more then a few icons in a folder.
Anyway, there were plenty of apps that had a block built in if the app was pirated.
Don't know how they do it, I'm no app dev but they're out there so why do they have
To go about it this way sucks. Keep your game.
post #35 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

It voids the warranty, for example if Samsung detects the wrong binaries on a Galaxy they will void the warranty.
That doesn't mean it's illegal.
post #36 of 80

Are many game studios planning to cease development for Mac and PC because those platforms let one install programs from any source?


Edited by d4NjvRzf - 7/11/13 at 7:03pm
post #37 of 80
No notice is necessary. Everyone knows you jailbreak at your own risk. You can't go whine because you've cracked something not intended to be cracked, then can't run something that was never designed to run on a cracked device.
post #38 of 80

This really isn't anything new and it's a very terrible idea for developers to do this.  

 

The facts that people tend to miss here are that:

1) You don't have to jailbreak to pirate apps on an iOS device.  You've never had to.

2) Jailbreaking does not equal piracy.

 

Sure, some jailbreakers pirate, and @d4NjvRzf brings up a good point, sideloading apps has always been possible on Macs and PCs, are Mac and PC users nothing but pirates?

 

So these developers have done what many others have done with DRM, they punish the paying customers.  That's very foolish.

 

Think about it.  You jailbreak your iOS device and regardless of whether or not you've pirated apps, you've decided to buy this particular app, and now it won't play.  What do you do?  The options are:

1) Forget about the app and the money you spent on it (maybe get a refund).

2) Unjailbreak (restore) your iOS device and reload the game (giving up everything you jailbroke your device for).

3) Pirate the game.

 

See, it's #3 that gets you.  This happens every time... if you don't sell an app or content in a way that people want to buy it, you provide incentive for people to pirate it.

 

Jailbroken or not jailbroken, this game can be pirated, and like all the other apps that have tried these shenanigans before it, it can be cracked to run on jailbroken devices.

 

So congratulations developers, you've lowered your app store rating, pissed off customers, and have actually boosted the incentive to pirate your game all while doing absolutely nothing to prevent anyone from pirating the game.

post #39 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwmac View Post

I wish to God they would do this for Modern War by Gree. It is consistently on the top 10 money earners for both the Apple and Google play stores for revenue. This game is over run with hackers that are able to use a hack on jailbroken iPhones and on rooted Android phones. For anyone here that is a Modern War addict like me I am sure you have run across guys with a 8 million A/D score with hundreds of limited edition units at 10,000 attack scores each in their inventory. I hope this does catch on since hackers destroy the fun in games. 

 

You don't need to jailbreak your iOS device to do this.  And developers should encrypt "coins", "achievements" and other things people can cheat with instead of having them easily editable even on non-jailbroken iOS devices.

post #40 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post


Apple is pretty good about refunds in the App Store. If anyone paid for this app and couldn't run it on their jail broken iOS device, just ask for a refund. I agree that no paying customer should get screwed.

 

As much as I'm pro-jailbreaking, I don't think Apple should refund money for this.  We jailbreak, we're on our own.  There have been plenty of other apps that have done this, and they've all been cracked by xCon and others.  For those who are unaware, this is a tweak that fools apps that you have purchased into thinking they are running on a device that hasn't been jailbroken.  It doesn't assist in piracy.

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