Bioshock -- every family member needs their own copy

That’s not always the case though, and many games allow you to install so that all users have access to the game.

An online service for a console isn’t a PC?! ;)

Anyway, while what you said is true in a way, we can’t really cite recorded computer history when, for most of recorded home computing history, the concept of user accounts is a relatively new phenomenon. And even then, the concept of isolated computer accounts on the average home machine is even newer, being introduced to the majority of people with XP. (Earlier versions of Windows common to home PCs (ie, not NT), while having user accounts, did not isolate the accounts from one another.)

I do get that it’s a silly thing 2K is doing, and it doesn’t make any sense at all. I just question how big of a deal it really is, in the end. Most home users don’t even use multiple accounts, having just set up the Administrator account in XP and gone from there. Of the small subset that does use accounts, I just don’t see why it’s such a big deal to share an account, or even create something like the Games account I mentioned earlier.

I think the time that’s elapsed between Bioshock’s release and this issue coming up is an indication of how small of an affected niche it is we’re dealing with. Truth be told, this whole issue is probably due more to some type of oversight or unintended consequence of 2K’s DRM system than it is a premeditated command decision on their part. I’m not sure why I think that, but the concept of limiting individual users of the same PC is so bizarre that I can’t help but suspect it wasn’t exactly done on purpose.

Well, if we want to get really technical, you shouldn’t install a game in the Admin account at all. Rather, you should use a Run As… on the installer, under your user profile, and apply the Admin account’s rights to the installation.

Picking the nits aside, this is another non-issue for the average home PC. Heck, not many professionals who should know better practice this level of proper computing, so it’s quite a huge leap to expect Joe Gamer to do so, don’t you think?

Actually, the difference is that XBox Live is not a game. The correct comparison would be MS charging people for the additional user login on windows (which of course doesn’t happen), not 2K charging people under different logins to play the same game.

And the comparison is also a bit moot, since I have my very own gamertag despite the fact that I pay MS not one cent for it. You don’t have to pay for an additional gamertag; you have to pay for the additional tracking behind it for online play and the (potential) ability to play concurrently. (I.e. both gamertags have Live Gold and may want to use it simultaneously.)

And companies wonder why PC game sales continue to plummet.

That isnt even accurate, XBL accounts are as free as windows user accounts. Gold membership costs. You can even create non-gamertag ‘profiles’ on a 360, with gamerscores and everything. So again, you could have as many users for, say, bioshock, on the 360 as you want. The only time anyone needs to pay for anything is to have Gold features, though the gold account can bring a guest online if they like.

Yeah! I mean, why should my girlfriend get to read that Harry Potter book I bought? She needs to buy her own! And we better pay twice for that 300 DVD if we’re both going to watch it. And that ladle in the kitchen? That’s my fucking ladle. One ladle per user! If you want to get soup out of the pot, you have to buy your own!

God, sometimes it’s like they don’t live in the real world. They live in some Excel Spreadsheet fantasy where they think that, by making multiple users in one home buy the same game, they’ll actually sell more copies. Rather than, you know, piss people off so they don’t even buy the first copy.

The actual limitation here is no big deal. The post that “JT” made, however, is a PR nightmare, which might explain why 2K deleted the original posting of it.

Dumb fuckin’ 2K.

Do they? Are PC game sales really plummeting? I’ve been hearing this for years and years and years now, but I’ve never really seen any data that indicates this plummet. Up against console sales, the PC has always seemed anemic, but I don’t know if there’s been any sharp decline in PC game sales between now and PC game sales five years ago.

I’m not saying that there hasn’t been a decline, or even a plummet - I just haven’t seen the data to indicate it. Of course, I haven’t really looked, either. I just tend to think that things have more or less stayed the same as they’ve been for years, rather than there being any big nose dives or anything. I’m probably wrong, but I’m curious all the same.

If I know anything about kids these days, its that handing somebody their login is like handing them the keys to their kingdom. Especially teenagers (which I’m assumming is the demographic who would share a PC with their syblings). Letting your brother onto you account is giving them access to your username for chats, lets them see your internet history (Brother went to!), email, etc. While I’m sure there are plenty of people who have nothing to hide on their PCs, teenager males tend not be those people.

Oh, and the post is incredibly stupid. Expecting people to buy multiple copies of the same game to play on the same machine is unheard of.

Of course you can get a Silver membership for free. The problem is, the Silver membership isn’t the Gold membership. I admit that the comparison between Xbox Live and Bioshock was weak at best, and in hindsight doesn’t really apply, but just because you can get a Gamertag and some very basic features for free doesn’t mean that I, or my wife, is going to go for that. I pay for a Gold membership and it would be nice to be able to associate more than one gamertag with that account, with the obvious limitation that only one gamertag from the account can be signed in at a time.

And this is where the comparison to Bioshock came in. If you want full Xbox Live membership features for two people in the same household, Microsoft forces you to buy two Gold subscriptions. It doesn’t matter that only one person could be signed into Xbox Live at a time - you simply must buy two subscriptions. I guess the comparison would be stronger if there was a crippled version of Bioshock that you could play on multiple PC user accounts…

Sorry I wasn’t clear enough, what I meant is that for recorded computer history multiple people have been able to play a game at a single computer without issue. Users are new-ish, but that doesn’t give any game company the right to say you have to buy the game per-user. It conflicts with how it has always been, users be damned.

PC game sales were dropping for quite a while year over year until last year/2006 when they posted slight growth. But the numbers were insanely propped up by WoW (and, to a lesser degree Sims 2). So the PC game industry isn’t quite in a freefall, but even with last year’s slight growth it has shrunk considerably and it is questionable how healthy the PC game ‘industry’ is in general is when so few games are contributing to the overall numbers these days.

Wow. Just…wow.

And they wonder why some people torrent their games?

Fuck everyone associated with this.

Excellent point, and a good reason behind creating an isolated Games account outside of the individual user accounts for Johnny and Joey Teenager. Keep all of their accounts restricted, providing them access only where they need it, and keeping the Games account streamlined from bloated processes and other applications that aren’t gaming related.

I want to repeat that I completely agree that the whole concept of 2K saying you need to buy multiple copies of the game for the same PC is absolutely crazy. I’m not arguing that it isn’t - I’m just questioning whether it’s really enough of an issue to, as someone indicated, boycott 2K’s games entirely, or even if it’s going to affect all that many people.

I don’t think they’ve been plummeting in an absolute sense (i.e. half of what they were) but they are plummenting relative to console sales as a whole. Five years ago PC games, including educational stuff, was 1/5 of the sales, today it’s even less. Of course lots of people will point out that the console market isn’t a monolithic platform, which is true, but it is five or six platforms versus a near infinite number of hardware configs on the PC so I think it evens out.

Anyway, as to the original post a lot of the reaction to this strikes me as unwarranted. First, we got the whining about how people needed to be able to install a game on more than two computers at once (though I do agree that 2K stupidely implemented the two computer limitation with the uninstall not being registered) and now we get this. In general I don’t understand why 2K choose to do this, but it affects only a tiny percentage of users. Declaring you won’t buy any more 2k games (say goodbye to Bioshock 2, possibly a new X-com, Grand Theft Auto, the Civilization series, just to name a few) because of something that doesn’t affect you at all and is easily worked around makes you look like an idiot, if a principled one.

Ok, I can get behind what you’re saying here. It is a completely boneheaded move on 2K’s part. I just don’t think it’s going to be a big enough problem for enough people to really matter very much in the end. It will get internet forums riled up and foaming, but beyond that I don’t think many people are going to care.

Then again, I wonder how many Joe Gamers are buying Bioshock for the PC, anyway. If it’s mostly “hardcore” PC gamers who are buying the game for their PCs then, proportionately speaking, maybe it will be a bigger deal than I’m guessing.*

*EDIT: Until, of course, they just download and apply the inevitable crack…

Anecdotal evidence:

On the way home from work, I went to the local BB to pick up Bioshock yesterday.

PC version: Plenty left on the shelf.
360 version: Sold out.

There was another BB on the way home, but by then cooler heads had prevailed, so back to Metroid Prime on the Wii.

Yeah, who cares if they take away rights you weren’t using anyway?

I see where you are coming from, and if they fix it, I’d say you are right. But if they set a precedent then it is in every PC gamer’s interest to flip the fuck out.