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Total War: Rome 2 won't have always-online, but will require Steam

Total War: Rome 2 will require Steam in order to quell piracy issues, but The Creative Assembly is stopping short requiring always-online for the title.

Speaking with Eurogamer, lead designer James Russell said that while always-online isn't something planned for Rome 2, it may be considered in the future.

"I wouldn't comment on ever," said Russell, "but it's certainly not something we're planning to do for Rome 2.

"It's always upsetting to see your game being pirated. Certainly we do suffer from that. We've got a lot of players who haven't necessarily activated. But at the same time it's arguable how much that harms sales. We don't like our game being pirated and so we take steps to try and stop that happening.

"We wouldn't want to take draconian steps to alienate our core player-base that are buying the game."

Russell also feels PC gaming is undergoing a renaissance, and developers have to keep up with the times when it comes to boxed and digital products. Russell feels Zynga are doing a rather good job of engaging players, and the games created by the firm are like a "gateway drug" to Total War.

"In many ways, PC games are undergoing a renaissance," he said. "I could talk about games that some people have an attitude to like Zynga games on Facebook: FarmVille, CityVille, that kind of stuff. But the point is that you've got 100 million people playing what is essentially a strategy game on PC every day. It's incredible. It's arguably the biggest genre out there.

"Times are challenging in many ways for boxed products and the way that people are consuming entertainment software is changing. We see very healthy sales on Steam. There's always going to be place for that big, lean in, epic experience that we deliver.

"But we want to be more accessible, not just to people seeking a more casual game, but to hardcore gamers who don't necessarily always want to be sitting down for hours on end. So we want the game to be playable in perhaps shorter sessions."

Total War: Rome 2 will release next year on PC.

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Stephany Nunneley

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Half-blind/half-dyslexic, bad typist, wine enthusiast, humanitarian, intellectual savant, idiot savior, lover of all things nonsensical, animal hoarder and highly sarcastic.

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