DRM is a “failed dead end”, says EA executive

Wednesday, 27th March 2013 22:57 GMT By Brenna Hillier

EA Labels boss Frank Gibeau says DRM isn’t something EA is interested in anymore, and therefore not the reason SimCity has an always-on Internet requirement.

Speaking with GamesIndustry, Gibeau said Maxis wasn’t asked to put DRM in SimCity to counter possible piracy.

“That’s not the reality; I was involved in all the meetings. DRM was never even brought up once,” he said.

“You don’t build an MMO because you’re thinking of DRM – you’re building a massively multiplayer experience, that’s what you’re building.”

Gibeau even went so far as to confirm what independent companies like CD projekt RED have been saying for years about anti-piracy measures.

“DRM is a failed dead-end strategy; it’s not a viable strategy for the gaming business,” he said.

“For the folks who have conspiracy theories about evil suits at EA forcing DRM down the throats of Maxis, that’s not the case at all,” he added.

“At no point in time did anybody say ‘you must make this online’. It was the creative people on the team that thought it was best to create a multiplayer collaborative experience, and when you’re building entertainment you don’t always know what the customer is going to want. You have to innovate and try new things and surprise people and in this particular case that’s what we sought to achieve.

“If you play an MMO, you don’t demand an offline mode, you just don’t. And in fact, SimCity started out and felt like an MMO more than anything else and it plays like an MMO.”

Giubeau said he’s “disappointed” that EA didin’t better communicate that SimCity was an MMO before launch, leaving some customers unhappy.

Thanks, CVG.



  1. Yoshi

    *shoutout* Ahh BULLSHIT!

    #1 2 years ago
  2. povu

    And here I was, coming into this article thinking EA had finally seen sense.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. DSB

    Blizzard already tried to spin it like that. It wasn’t believable then either.

    You’d think executives would somehow learn from their peers mistakes if nothing else, but I guess that’s giving them too much credit.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. NightCrawler1970

    Wow, NO SHIT EA, try to deal with DRM, and try to make sure that no piracy will be placed…

    What utter bullshit to compare Sim City with an ONLINE MMO game???

    Sim City always was offline game from the first Sim City to Sim City 4…

    But for the first time ever, Maxis and EA want that game perminant online connection to play the game…

    While million of people, screamed to patch the game to make it offline…

    So yeah DRM SUCKS, never works, never will

    #4 2 years ago
  5. yeoung

    I wonder how long it’ll take for them to backpaddle on this one

    #5 2 years ago
  6. The_Red

    The lengths these people go to justify their DRMS… just wow. Fuck you. Fuck your DRM. Fuck your SimCity.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Andrew C.

    @6: You have a point!

    #7 2 years ago
  8. CodenameD

    Sure make it an MMO and add micro-transactions. Always Online – justified! No DRM – LOL – justified!

    Give it up EA. Die and Rot.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. mistermogul

    “If you play an MMO, you don’t demand an offline mode”

    Yeah and how about the single player Mr Gibeau?

    Why can’t I play single player without being tethered to your stupid servers? (which will likely be switched off in a year or two therefore ending my ability to play the game at all)

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Old MacDonald

    “You don’t build an MMO because you’re thinking of DRM – you’re building a massively multiplayer experience, that’s what you’re building.”

    Then why didn’t you build a massively multiplayer experience?

    It’s not that I would have preferred a MMO – I wouldn’t – but SimCity isn’t even remotely close to that.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. YoungZer0

    @5: They won’t.

    #11 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.