Spyforce Needs to Go

I’ll freely admit it: I’m a bad activist. I don’t write letters as much as I should, and I don’t promote things when I first hear about them. I do personal boycotts, but (as I’ve stated before) I don’t think that’s enough. So it should come as no surprise that I’ve known about StarForce for quite some time. I did the obligatory check on my computer, vowed never to let that shit onto my hard drive, and promptly forgot about the whole thing.

That is, until I narrowly escaped having that piece of nasty spyware ruin my ability to experience the sequel to The Longest Journey. You see, Guilded Lilies reminded me to check the Starforce list again and, lo and behold, Dreamfall appeared on the list of infected games.

Please take a moment to imagine my reaction. I’ve been waiting for this game since 1999 and now some piece of crap company who supports a program that has been known to do irreparable harm to computers was going to ruin that! It got to the point where I was thinking, “You know, I bet there’s a cracked version out there that doesn’t include that POS virus spyware.” Crazy, I know. But you don’t understand how much I love this series.

So, anyway, I then went into denial mode. “Just because GameFaqs lists this as the only hit for ‘dreamfall’ there must be another game. The beloved creators of The Longest Journey simply would not do that to me.” The bad news is that yes, yes they did. The good news is that only the people who buy the UK or Limited edition are screwed. Aspyr, the US distributor, uses a different kind of copy-protection.

So, instead of the angry letter I intended to fire off, I wrote an encouraging one:

As an avid gamer and long-time fan of The Longest Journey, I was excited (to say the least) when I saw that the sequel had finally come out. Imagine my shock when the game appeared on the list of games that came with Starforce!

After a little bit of digging, I was relieved to find that your version of the game did *not* include the program. So, I was just writing in with my support for the decision. I don’t know if you did it because of the boycott or another reason, but I am glad that I don’t have to miss out on the sequel to one of my all-time favourite games.

Information about the Starforce boycott can be found here.

As long as Aspyr games continue to stay clean of that nasty piece of spyware, you can be sure that I will keep my eye out for your new releases.

If any of y’all are fans of The Longest Journey I encourage you to fire off a little note to the company giving them your support both for the product and for their decision not to use Starforce.

PS: I blame my love for Dreamfall for my inability to read. GL says right in her post that Aspyr Media made the decision to pull Starforce from their games.

Boycott Staforce
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3 Responses to Spyforce Needs to Go

  1. jfpbookworm says:

    Thanks for the heads up on this; I hadn’t heard about it, being relatively out of touch with commercial PC gaming lately (I’m saving myself for Spore).

    We haven’t bought Dreamfall yet (we’re just now in the process of playing TLJ – yeah, I know, I have no excuse), but I’m glad Aspyr is being sensible about this. I’d be heartbroken if I had to choose between missing out on the sequel or putting malware on my main PC.

  2. Killer B says:

    Would I understand this better if I were a game-player of some sort? I looked it up, but it was like reading another language :( Ack.

  3. tekanji says:

    B: Haha, yeah, it probably would. The long and the short is that some gaming companies are packaging a program called “Starforce” with their product. It will install on your computer without your knowledge and it doesn’t require a separate user agreement. It is supposed to be copy protection software, but because of its design it has a high chance of breaking your CD/DVD-ROM drives. Ergo, the boycott.

    My personal ranting on the matter has to do with a game that I love and will probably seem to be giberish to anyone who doesn’t have a love of PC adventure games :)

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