CDP Spells It Out: No DRM For The Witcher 3

Here’s some very good news: CD Projekt Red are keeping their promise, and The Witcher 3 is to feature no DRM whatsoever. It’s odd, because they feel like the sort of company that never would in the first place – what with their connections to GOG and all. But CDP have stuck their fingers in the icky pot of DRM in the past. And of course they were embroiled in the epically dick move of threatening alleged pirates with bullying lawsuits. It seems that this ill behaviour is behind them now, and they’re making efforts to reassure people that there’s to be not a drip of DRM in The Witcher 3. Hoorah!

It seems there were murmurings of concern after recently announced distribution deals, so CDP’s joint CEO, Marcin Iwinski, made their position ultra-clear:

“Hey, following our recent announcement of the distribution deals of The Witcher 3 in North America and Europe, there have been some concerns regarding DRM and previous legal issues with The Witcher 2. We’ve seen a lot of comments in various places around the web and we would like to join in on the conversation.

“I’d like to say it loud and clear: The PC version of The Witcher 3 will have absolutely no DRM from day 0. Zero. Zip. Nada. It doesn’t matter if you choose to buy it on and support us directly or buy the game in box format, you’ll still get the 100% DRM-free experience. And this goes for the whole world.

“We’ve fiddled with DRM in the past (Oh boy! How young and naïve we were;)) and that’s enough. Lesson learned.”

Which is tremendous news. Of course people then – like a school assembly – immediately chorused together, “Buuuut Steeeaaaaaam iisss DRM!” Yes, yes it is. So he added,

“It’ll be on Steam; the team isn’t going to exclude that community by any means. Gamers have a choice in where they buy their games, but where CDPR does have control — like — there will be absolutely no DRM.”

So there you go. You’ll be able to pay for and enjoy The Witcher 3 just as you want.

Update: Here is CDP explaining why they’re doing what they’re doing:


  1. Lobotomist says:

    Well , DRM or not , cant wait for this game. BTW heads up , another Witcher book is finally translated. So we are graced with wopping 3 english translated books out of 11 or more in this super popular book series tied with massively popular computer RPG and comics.
    Good job for whoever is managing Sapowski rights

    • Michael Fogg says:

      Sapkowski’s new Witcher novel comes out November 6. It’s called ‘Season of Storms’. Hooray for sequels.

      • Fomorian1988 says:

        Or interquels, the summary doesn’t make it clear when the story will take place.

        • SillyWizard says:

          Have you guys found the translations to be uneven from book to book? It appears to be the same lady translating them all to English, but while the Last Wish was a joy to read, I felt like she brutalized the Blood of Elves with lazy/uninspired translation. While I was reading I felt like she really didn’t want to be wasting her time on fantasy books. :/

          • Lobotomist says:

            Completely agree. Last Wish was awesome. While other books are translated in real sloppy way. The story is still great but the writing style is really not fitting fantasy novel.

      • Kodaemon says:

        Preorders already arrived. The new book is a novel, set before the events of the cycle and with a self-contained plot not connected to the main story arc. I’d say it feels like Sapkowski started writing a new short story collection akin to The Last Wish and Sword of Destiny but at some point reworked it into a novel, which makes for a bit of a disjointed structure. Overall though, I quite enjoyed it, hope it gets translated soon.

        If anyone’s interested, here’s my translation of the sample: link to

    • Werthead says:

      11? With the new book there’s 8 in total.

      As for what happened with the books, after BLOOD OF ELVES was translated and published there was a legal snafu between the British publisher, the Polish publisher, Sapkowski and the translator. I get the impression the translator was where the real problem lay. The fact that her translation of BLOOD OF ELVES was reportedly subpar (she’s mostly a translator of non-fiction and technical works, which may be why it left something to be desired) and she was replaced for TIME OF CONTEMPT may be related to this. However, I know the publisher worked hard to get the books out in English for four years non-stop before they finally overcame the problems to do it.

      • kud13 says:

        And yet they totally ignored “Sword of Destiny”…. which isn’t just the single best piece of Witcher-fiction, but is also pretty crucial in understanding wtf is happening in “Blood of the Elves”….

  2. BobbyDylan says:

    Still gonna buy it on steam.

    • lizzardborn says:

      There are DRM free games on steam too.

      I can think of a few that run perfectly fine when started directly from the executable no matter if steam is working or not. So this could be the case.

      • Grygus says:

        That’s because the “Steam is DRM” talking point is false. Steam supports DRM, and a lot of games do take advantage of that, but Steam itself is just a delivery platform.

        • Dowr says:

          Steam is both DRM and a digital distribution/service platform.

          • darkChozo says:

            Steam, at a minimum, is a digital distribution platform and storefront. Steam can also provide other services to developers, among which is a DRM solution. Many, but not all games, take advantage of this service.

            Steam is DRM in the same sense that, say, Microsoft Word is table creation software. It can be, and in a lot of cases it’s used as such, but it’s not always the case.

          • lordcooper says:

            No. Steamworks is DRM. Steam isn’t. Steamworks != Steam.

          • Deadly Sinner says:

            Even Steamworks doesn’t have to be DRM. Batman: Arkham City GOTY has most of the Steamworks features (cloud saves, achievements, trading cards, etc.) yet you can start it from the executable.

    • nu1mlock says:

      Now that would be kind of stupid (no offence).

      Purchasing any game on Steam (except some indie-games on sale) isn’t something one would want to do. For example, GMG is always cheaper than Steam (regular prices) and most of the time they’re cheaper than Steam when Steam has their sales. Except for those few games that are only available on Steam and nowhere else of course.

      The Witcher 3 will be available on GMG, hence, much cheaper – more often than not – almost half price.

      That being said, unless I get a free Steam key from GOG, then I’ll be purchasing it on GMG. I would love to purchase it on GOG and support CDPR even more, but it comes down to the key. With over 300 games on Steam, 30-ish on Origin, another 20-ish on Uplay and tonnes of DRM-free games, I can’t really keep track of them anymore. I “need” that key for my library. :)

      • SighmanSays says:

        Unless I’m misinterpreting what you’re getting at, you can add non-steam games to your steam library. It doesn’t work for Origin games*, and I don’t know how Uplay works with it, but just about everything else that doesn’t require a separate program to launch it runs dandy through steam, overlay and all.

        *You can launch Origin through Steam and you can access the overlay in your games that way, but it’s a hassle. I guess you could also just slap cracks on your games and run directly through Steam that way.

        • Vandelay says:

          You can add it to Steam, but you can’t download it. It can get pretty hard to keep track of where all your games can be re-downloaded from when you have umpteen stores.

          Still, I don’t get the Steam or no sale brigade, particularly when you are just getting a Steam key from places like GMG. Steam prices outside of sales aren’t competitive and they are normally being matched by other stores nowadays when in sale.

          I’ll be getting mine direct from GoG though and backing the download up on an external drive, so I can keep a copy. I understand that isn’t practical for everyone though.

        • nu1mlock says:

          Sure, I can add non-Steam games to Steam. Thing is, starting a game isn’t the problem. The problem is to keep all my games updated with patches and new content.

          Let’s say I purchase Terraria (which I have) and bought it on the developer’s site (for more support). I’ll add it to Steam as a non-Steam game. I’ll play it and enjoy it.

          Several months later, 20 games later, I don’t play it anymore. Not because it’s bad, but because I’m playing other, newer games. They update. Big. But since I’ve got more or less 400 games to keep track of (Steam, Origin, Uplay and DRM-free), I won’t notice.

          Would it be a Steam game, well, then at least I would have noticed that Terraria got an update (either by the news, the popups or the download bar updating Terraria).

          Edit: Then there’s Torchlight 2. I purchased TL2 for a friend through their site, which didn’t give me a Steam key. We use a few mods to keep it interesting (like new classes etc.). Guess what – they’re not getting updated. Steam does that automatically since they’re on the Workshop. My friend has to download them manually from the different modding-sites.

          TL;DR: Starting a game isn’t a problem. Keeping it updated and re-downloading it is – at least if you’ve got a total of 400+ games.

          • DanMan says:

            So what you suggest is a way to link games you’ve added manually to the game that’s tracked by Steam.

      • Lemming says:

        Sometimes, people like to use the shop they use regularly and trust, and show support where they want to see things in future. Sometimes, it’s not about saving a couple of quid. See: People buying games on disc from their local, far more expensive Game.

        Steam also has community features, which adds another layer of ‘reason I do stuff’.

        • nu1mlock says:

          Sure, Steam has “community features” but you’ll get that with a Steam key. I get Steam keys from (almost) all games that are available on GMG. So even though I don’t give Valve any money for their crappy support, I’ll still be able to take advantage of all its benefits.

          I would love to support Steam, but until they change their prices and get proper customer support, I won’t.

          Oh, and I wouldn’t call it “a couple of quid” really. See, I live in Sweden and Steam usually want 50€ (£42.79 according to Google) for new AAA-games. GMG, on the other hand, usually want £25, or worst case scenario, £30 for the same game. With a Steam key. Which makes it the exact same thing, only almost half price.

          Now, if one would only get a game or two per year then perhaps it doesn’t really matter. But being me, purchasing 2-10 games per month (purchasing games for “pirate friends” to so I can actually play with them), it’s more than “a few pounds”.

          Seeing GMG being a “real” retailer (unlike shady Russian CD-key sites), it makes no sense to purchase a game for almost double the price when I get the exact same benefits from GMG. Only cheaper.

      • pottering says:

        Steam prices in some countries are significantly cheaper than other retailers. Think about that before calling people “stupid” in a site with a sizable international audience.

        • nu1mlock says:

          I never called anyone stupid, I specifically said that the action itself is stupid. Making mistakes doesn’t make a person stupid.

          That being said, it doesn’t really matter that countries like Russia and other CIS countries get cheaper games. While GMG is cheaper than Steam for US/EU, there are other authorized digital retailers for CIS, Mexico etc. that are still cheaper than Steam.

          Which gets us back to my point.

          • jrodman says:

            I see you’ve checked the prices of all products from all vendors in all markets. I’m impressed.

          • tormos says:

            he can do that because he doesn’t waste time being stupid :)

    • Keyrock says:

      There is Steam and there is Steamworks. There is an argument about whether Steam itself is DRM or not, I won’t get into that argument here (or anywhere else for that matter, because I don’t care), Steamworks definitely is DRM. If a game uses Steamworks it needs Steam to run, if a game doesn’t use Steamworks, and I’m almost positive The Witcher 3 will fall into this category, then, after the initial one-time activation, you can play said game without ever needing to start Steam up ever again.

  3. nimzy says:

    Game of the year. Even before it comes out.

    • lordcooper says:

      All years.

    • Kubrick Stare Nun says:

      Given that there’s like 5000 publications who hand out that award, I did say that all games are GOTY.

      • lordcooper says:

        Bad Rats.

      • Keyrock says:

        Sadly I have to agree. I mean Two Worlds 2 got a “Game of the Year” edition which implies that some publication somewhere named it Game of the Year, and that game was awful.

        • nrvsNRG says:

          Two Worlds 2, awful? I wouldnt go that far.
          I enjoyed the hell out of it.

    • mouton says:

      What you are doing is hype. Hype is cancer. Therefore, you are responsible for cancer.

  4. Fenix says:

    At this point, this sort of thing is sort of expected from them.

    I love how CDP went from a small company that dubbed RPGs to Polish to this headlining force in the game industry.

  5. SIDD says:

    Bought Witcher 1 and 2; still haven’t gotten around to playing either one (/sad face hung in shame) but dammit if I am not going to buy this one as well in order to…
    1) Support CDP (and make it a bit more likely that their venture into the Cyberpunk world will come to full term)
    2) Make sure that I have at least 3 games I can play when the forth-coming cyberwar against USA takes down the internet and all the DRM servers with it (hmm…and I just made the NSA watch list, didn’t I?!)

    • Vinraith says:

      Yeah, I’ve played all the way through W1 but haven’t gotten around to playing 2, despite ordering it new. Honestly, my affection for CDP vastly exceeds my affection for the actual games, which are a bit to on rails for my tastes.

      • vitaminTcomplex says:

        “which are a bit to on rails for my tastes”

        You really need to play Witcher 2.

        • Vandelay says:

          To be fair, it is an understandable reason for disliking the games’ style, including Witcher 2. Sure, it has a branching story, but you are always playing as Geralt and filling the role of a Witcher. It isn’t the kind of RPG that lets you decide to go and live your game life selling fine leather jerkins.

          You are always playing someone else’s story and that doesn’t appeal to everyone (fortunately, I’m not one of them and love the games.)

      • sd4f says:

        I have the collectors edition of 2 and the box with the discs is still sealed :( Been waiting to build a computer that can play it in all its glory, but then uni took over.

  6. Michael Fogg says:

    Can’t wait to get into the boots of Geralt ‘Impaler’ of Riva.

  7. Drake Sigar says:

    This is exactly what I want – choice. Steamheads are kept happy while I can obtain copies from other outlets such as GoG that keep the concept of ownership alive.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      You can even get it on Steam and not have the worry of ownership at all! Wondrous isn’t it?

      Yes, you can actually get a game on Steam, close Steam down, and launch the game without Steam running at all, provided the game doesn’t use Steamworks (which TW3 won’t, since no DRM). Hence, it’s just as free of DRM as the GOG version.

      I’ll still buy it on GOG, but regardless of where you get it it’ll be safe.

    • Ocki says:

      You “own” games from GoG in the same way you “own” games from Steam. You are not allowed to resell or copy them. The only difference is nobody is watching what you are doing with your GoG games. But you’re right. Choice is always good.

      • jalf says:

        No, another difference is that with your Steam games, you do not even have any guarantee that you will still be permitted to play your game next week.

        With GOG, the absolute worst they can do is prevent you from redownloading the game. But if you already have it, they can’t take it away from you. Sure, you’re not allowed to resell it, but you are allowed to *keep* it, at least.

        • Ocki says:

          Ok, I give you that. But I’m optimistic that such thing won’t happen in the near future and Valve said several times that they have an emergency plan and will free the games from Steam in a worst case scenario. I just wanted to point out that you don’t have more legal rights with the GoG versions.

          • The Random One says:

            No such post-apocalyptic fugues are needed. I haven’t been able to play SRIV for a while because of a Steam error. I’m taking my time troubleshooting it because I’m super lazy, but some people in the forums have tried everything and it still didn’t work.

          • Alexrd says:

            Source of such assurance from them?

            Their terms and conditions make it clear that they are under no obligation to maintain your access to the games you bought (or should I say rented?) and they are free to close your access from them.

          • Ocki says:

            Hey, I’m not here to defend Steam. I know its flaws and I’m also a GoG customer. But even in the GoG Terms of Use you find things like “You agree that the Service, including but not limited to text, editorial content, graphics, artwork, photographs, music, sound, video, screen shots and software, contains proprietary information and material that is owned by GOG and/or its licensors, and is protected by applicable intellectual property and other laws, including but not limited to copyright. You will not use such proprietary information or materials in any way whatsoever except for use of the Service in compliance with the terms of this Agreement.” You own a licence not the product. That conflicts with things like “… as GoG that keep the concept of ownership alive.” And that was my whole point.

  8. LTK says:

    I don’t understand why they said ‘day 0’. Doesn’t that imply pre-release? If I recall correctly, the Witcher 2 had day 0 DRM to mitigate the damage of potential leaks, which was removed on day 1.

  9. kud13 says:

    Yep, and this is why CDPRed still gets a full-price purchase from me every time.

    Can’t wait for TW3

    • ColonelClaw says:

      This will be the only game I will preorder, going back at least 3 years and going forward for probably more. For everything else I take the TotalBiscuit line on preordering.

  10. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    Couldn’t they just make it so that the Steam version includes an exe that doesn’t require launching the Steam client? There used to be games like that (I think Arkham Asylum was one), a fact I discovered when I once wanted to play some games while away from any connection for a long period of time only to learn that Steam decided I didn’t really set it to Offline Mode weeks earlier and locked me out.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      Is The Witcher 3 going to be using Steamworks? If not, then it will be reasonable to assume that the Steam version will have a client-free executable.

      I hope that’s the case, because Steamworks is just another layer of DRM, and using it would make CDP little bitty liars.

      • RProxyOnly says:

        The story actually states that disc and GOG version will be DRM free, whilst the steam version will have, at the very least, the client tacked on.

        That’s the way it goes if they want a release on Steam, although personally speaking, if I were in their place and the DRM issue was as important to me (which it kinda is) as they state it is to them then I’d probably refuse a Steam release.. however Steam does absolutely mean more money, so……

        • The Random One says:

          You can release DRM-free games on Steam and there are quite a few. Steam works as just a downloader in that case, but you can do whatever you want with the files.

  11. WarderDragon says:

    I love CD Projekt Red, which is funny because I don’t really like their games, which is funny because I think they’re actually really, really good games. Huh! Yeah, turns out the only reason I don’t like them is because of being forced to play Geralt. Terrible, terrible character. Still, great games.

  12. Turkey says:

    They should bring back old school copy protection where you have to answer a bunch of dumb trivia from an excerpt of one of the books that they stuck in the manual.

    • Eukatheude says:

      Please enter the third word on page 48, line 5.

      To think we had 48+ pages manuals back then

  13. derbefrier says:

    “If you can’t beat them, join them”

    Its also funny how trying to stop thievery is seen as a “dick”move. Logic is only an obstacle in the way of people getting what they want I guess.

    • GameCat says:

      Most of DRMs are dick moves against legal customers, because pirates will still play 99% of games without any annoying things like limited number of installations, beign forced to put their CD/DVDs into drive etc. and laugh at people who actually paid for a game.

    • kud13 says:

      piracy=/=”thievery” it’s copyright infringment.

      and the “dick move” referred to in the article is what’s called “blackmail”. including reported cases of false positives of so-called “pirates”

    • Grygus says:

      It’s security theater, allowing them to say they are Doing Something To Stop Piracy, without actually thinking about the problem at all. It’s all about preserving executive bonuses and a bullet point on the quarterly report, and has nothing to do with good business or good customer relations; in fact, in at least some cases it is counterproductive to both business and customer relations. Maybe in 1997 a company could claim ignorance or curiosity, but this is all well-known and well-documented by this point, so yeah the vast majority of DRM implementations are, at this point, dick moves.

      Note that if you talk about what DRM is actually trying to accomplish, people won’t have much of a problem with it. When it just required you to have the CD in the drive, there were relatively few complaints. It is the idiotic implementations that unduly punish legit customers that bring the contempt.

      • buzzmong says:

        In the days of games requiring CD’s to be present to do a check, one of the first things I’d do after installing a game I’d bought was to go find a no-cd crack.

        Personally, I feel the best DRM is the manual check. While still inconvienent, if you had the manual it’s pretty easy, plus it meant you had an actual manual! :)

  14. Strangerator says:

    I wish I loved this series slightly less, I am fairly certain I can’t afford a new PC. TW2 ran serviceably with some down tweaking but I get the feeling that this will be a bit much. Maybe when next Summer hits I’ll work a bunch of extra hours and pull off an upgrade..

    Open-world with a non-silent protagonist sounds like a lot of fun, especially if they fix a lot of my quibbles with Skyrim. I’ve personally always enjoyed TW’s lore and world, and yes even the characters.

  15. MadTinkerer says:

    ” “Buuuut Steeeaaaaaam iisss DRM!” Yes, yes it is. ”

    No it isn’t, Goddamn it. Do I have to copy games directly from their Steam folders onto torrents just to stop this idiotic rumor-mongering? Because that would be illegal.

    • kud13 says:

      if the .exe requires Steam being on your system to launch, yes, it is DRM.

      If I have a GOG installer of a game and a Steam folder of the same game on an external hard drive, and i connect it to a brand new PC, I will be able to install the GOG version hassle free. If I try to run the Steam version, if i’m prompted for a Steam.exe that is not present on this machine, then, yes, Steam IS DRM. The friendliest, most customer-friendly DRM there is, but DRM nonetheless.

      • dE says:

        “if the .exe requires Steam being on your system to launch, yes, it is DRM. “

        And that’s why he’s calling it rumor mongering. Steam does offer an optional DRM System, but does not require it to be active. It’s the choice of the Developer, whether they want to have that functionality active in their games or not. There are games you can download through Steam, copy them someplace else and run them without needing Steam anymore.
        That said, most Developers do pick the DRM and Steam doesn’t exactly communicate this prior to purchase/launch. There’s a fault in that.

        • MadTinkerer says:

          Indeed, Steam’s one fault is that they do not distinguish between which games are DRM free and which are not, which leads to this kind of rumor in the first place. I’m guessing Valve are rolling the dice and consulting the charts and thinking that the sales they might get from explicitly categorizing some games as DRM free will not be worth the hassle of:

          1) Vocal anti-DRM activists putting pressure on devs/pubs to make all their games DRM free when only a tiny minority of their customers know or care. (Which would also get into the sticky issue of shareholders forcing pubs to force devs to use DRM measures…)
          2) Vocal anti-DRM activists accusing Valve of lying because they believe the rumor of Steam being a DRM system in itself, so no sales gained there.
          3) Devs/pubs who are anti-DRM (and/or not worried about piracy) themselves already put their files up on Steam without any restrictions already, so they’re already happy to do so.

          So I don’t really blame Valve for this. IT WOULD BE NICE IF RPS WOULD REPORT THIS ISSUE ACCURATELY, but I don’t completely blame them either. Most of the highest-profile games on Steam do require Steam to run for one reason or another, like the multiplayer games that use Steamworks for matchmaking, and there’s currently no way of knowing whether a game can be run independent from Steam other than manually testing the game after you bought it. But that doesn’t change the fact that there is a significant subset of games on Steam which don’t actually need Steam to run, and that makes Steam not-a-DRM-system by definition.

          • XhomeB says:

            Sure, many people do not care whether their game uses DRM or not – until it prevents them from running a game.
            This is when they wake up and realize they were being irresponsible.

            Yes, some games sold on Steam are DRM free – you might as well copy their folder and they will continue to function, similar to GOG. With that said, that only applies to select few titles made mostly by small indie studios. Every single “AAA” game I have on Steam uses its DRM. Heck, even many INDIE games on Steam use Steam DRM, even though they’re available in a DRM-free form on GOG (Outlast, Guacamelee, Stacking, the list goes on).
            I basically stopped buying anything on Steam, I’ve had enough headaches caused by its utterly broken “offline mode”, which works only when it feels like it. Major releases from big publishers aside (which don’t give me any choice), I’ve switched to GOG completely. It’s simply much more convenient.

    • Ultarim says:

      Do you install softwares by grabbing folders? If not, well you install softwares with an installer, don’t you? If an installer has to check your internet connection to go to a server, even if you have already the installer on a HDD, DVD, Blu-Ray…, it’s a DRM. Same way during a DRM CD check during (or even before) an install. Nothing new here. So no it’s not a rumor.

      • MadTinkerer says:

        You don’t know what you are talking about. requires you to have an internet connection to download installers, which is fine, because that’s the point. Steam is the same way, except it skips having separate installers. Once installed, some games do have additional DRM features, usually just checking whether Steam is running and asking the client whether the current person logged in has access to the game. Bastion, for example, does this.

        Other games use GFWL or connect to proprietary servers which have NOTHING TO DO WITH STEAM. Other games use additional Steam-specific features that Valve added in to keep certain publishers happy. And some games don’t give a crap as long as all of the local files are in the right place.

        AND SOME GAMES DON’T GIVE A CRAP AS LONG AS ALL THE LOCAL FILES ARE IN THE RIGHT PLACE. Some “Steam games” use Steam for installation and that’s it. They don’t care about internet connections, they don’t care who is logged into Steam. They don’t even require Steam to run. I HAVE TESTED THIS. There are games that use Steam to install that you can just grab the files and those files never complain if Steam isn’t running. Yeah, achievements always require Steam. Yeah, Steamworks multiplayer always requires Steam. But there are single-player games that don’t give a shit about Steam once installed. Therefore Steam is not DRM.

        • Grygus says:

          I do wish more people would try it instead of just assuming that it’s 2004 and you can’t play Half-Life 2 without Steam and therefore Steam is DRM.

          • basilisk says:

            The funniest thing about this is that as of the latest update, Half-Life 2 itself is playable without Steam. The DRM lock is gone.

        • XhomeB says:

          SecuROM is NOT DRM, folks. It’s NOT. Because some games don’t use it. Therfore, SecuROM is NOT DRM.

          • Grygus says:

            If you had games with SecuROM that didn’t have any DRM, this analogy would make sense.

        • Ultarim says:

          Why do you focus DRM on only DRM-to-run-a-game? Is the installer of any Steam game a single file, or a exe and some bin? Or do you have to have internet to check your install?
          I don’t care if you just want to play your games only once. But, personally, I don’t play games only once (or I just play once bad games). And I don’t want to have to be checked on every time I just want to install my games.
          Some Steam games don’t have a DRM to run? Fine. That’s not the point.
          Having to be forced to have internet checks on every install IS DRM. It that case, Steam is no different than GFWL DRM.

          And just about grabbing files, do you have tested that way on old games installed in WinXP then grabbed on a Win8? Or do you intend to do that forever? Do you really think that “way of installing” would be clean and couldn’t provoke bugs?

          And since you mentionned GOG. You can download your game installer. Then copy on a HDD, or burn a CD or a DVD or even a Blu-ray. Then you can install your game offline. You can read that? OFFLINE. And then you can play your game. Then you can finish your game. Then you can uninstall your game. Then, years after, you can reinstall your game with your installer (again HDD, CD, DVD, BD…), OFFLINE. I repeat. If you have to be online to install your game, IT’S DRM. So don’t tell me that I don’t know what I’m talking about.

          • dE says:

            My, aren’t you quite the hyper aggressive Internet warrior? Please do tell, are you familiar with what an installer actually does? Here’s the short version:
            * Copy Stuff from Point A to Point B.
            End of List.

            It doesn’t have those magical fixing abilities you attach to it. It doesn’t automatically fix issues that came with a newer OS either. In fact, old installers cause additional problems because they’re an additional barrier that needs to be compatible with newer OS structures. Funny thing, they often need work arounds and fixes. Because User Access and Read/Write Access changed a lot over the years.
            They also tend to install horribly outdated DLLs that can seriously smack the stability of your system around. So that completely kills your “clean install” argument. And since you really have no further argument, copying files manually versus copying files automatically isn’t much of a reason to scream DRM. Both can be done offline. Both can run into compatiblity issues when you switch over to another OS. And the last bullet goes to your GOG argument and homes in full circle on the install thing. Do you know how GOG installs those old Dos Games? It simply copies them over, along with a preconfigured DOSBOX. All it does is automate the following process:
            Rightclick on Folder. Copy. Navigate to Target Folder. Paste.

          • Ultarim says:

            @dE: well…
            Aggressive warrior? Do you have read the post that I was replying? And you find me aggressive?

            And clean install… Are we debating on what people want or on truth, rumors and lies?
            You can turn the sentence the way you want. I don’t blame you if you like Steam. I don’t blame you if you want to grab files for installing. I just don’t grab files for installing if I can have a clean installer. That’s what I want, if I may answer you. I just want clean installers. Is it too much? Or am I aggressive for asking that?
            And your “counter argument” doesn’t prevent Steam installers to be DRM.

          • dE says:

            I’ve made my point, I’ve made it pretty clear. What you seem to be arguing is that you want Steam to create auto-copiers for you, the way GoG creates auto-copiers for you. This isn’t even remotely about DRM. This is about convenience, which is a completely different topic.
            Alas, if you really think your post wasn’t aggressive, there really isn’t much left we can talk about. You’ve clearly made your point in that department. Although you claim you didn’t.

          • Ultarim says:

            @dE: I don’t know why you avoid the fact that requiring internet during an install is DRM. Accepting DRM or not is obviously a matter of convenience. But it doesn’t change semantics.
            And I have to add that before Steam, PC gaming already existed. So auto-copiers, as you said, were already there. On disks, CD, DVD… It isn’t just “the way GOG does”, but the way everyone else already did since more than 25 years (except DRM games obviously). GOG isn’t an exception.
            And please. Talking about “aggressive” when it wasn’t intended to be, is a bit ridiculous.

    • Shooop says:

      If you have to have Steam running to open it, then yes it is acting as the game’s DRM.

      Now if you can just open the exe by itself…

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      Hmm, the last time I checked, only a third of the games in my Steam library actually ran without the client. Granted this was over a year ago, and my collection has increased dramatically since then, but I’m getting the point across nevertheless.

      You can’t claim Steam isn’t DRM just because some publishers choose to bypass the client. Steam was created with DRM in mind, and it hasn’t deviated from that for the most part. Actually, I’d argue it’s gotten worse in that regard with Steamworks and “Steam-only” titles becoming more common.

  16. Kubrick Stare Nun says:

    HAHAHA! Right at your dirty faces, DRM infested inferior races!

  17. MrNash says:

    This article reminds me I’ve still gotta play through the first two Witcher games. I’ve never gotten much further than that initial attack at the start of the first game before getting distracted by something shiny and never getting back to the game. >_>

    • finalfanatik says:

      I am a Terrible Person, in that I still haven’t finished the first two games either.
      I really, really want to – I love the concept and the worlds and they’re beautifully made. But they’re so DENSE. I just find myself enjoying it for a few days, then bouncing off and the next thing I know it’s three weeks later and I’ve forgotten to boot it up again.
      I’ll have to make a concerted effort. But then that makes gaming a chore, which is the #1 No-No in my books.

  18. SuicideKing says:

    Will probably buy the boxed version just to support CDPR, The Witcher games are too scary for me. At least, that’s my impression.

    (Retail prices at launch are much lower for me here than Steam, etc.)

    • Grygus says:

      They’re not horror games, if that’s what you mean. It’s fantasy, with monsters and such, but except for the occasional dark dungeon there isn’t much to be afraid of; you tend to be the source of fear more than the target.

    • pepperfez says:

      Unless boxed prices are somehow just ultra-low for you, I think GoG’s de facto worldwide pricing consistency would make it competitive.

  19. Shooop says:

    Don’t they know I’m already going to buy this game? Now they’re just taunting me.

  20. Beelzebud says:

    They do realize that they don’t have to use Steamworks DRM, right? It’s totally optional. Why take a strong anti-DRM stance, and then use DRM on the most popular platform on the PC?

    • Snakejuice says:

      Did they use Steamworks DRM for Witcher 2?

    • cpt_freakout says:

      I don’t think the game is Steamworks, so the game doesn’t use Steam-as-DRM. It’ll just be available there. Check up on other posts in the thread, there are several people who explain this in-depth.

  21. Thoma says:

    Good to hear, though I’ll definitely purchase it in a physical retail format as with the Witcher 2, I just love all the goodies that came with the collector’s edition. I’m also assuming that I will be able to register the CD key with GOG to have a digital back-up copy anyway. I just hope that it won’t come out at the same time as Dragon Age Inquisition, otherwise I will have to take out a few more off days from work that I have already planned. Edit: Yeah I know, first world problems. ^^

  22. Carra says:

    Bought the Witcher 2 on instead of steam last time. The fact that they ask $50 instead of the €50 on steam was a big reason. Then they added two free games. And a free enhanced edition. And a ton of freebies.

    Oh, it was also one of the best games I’ve ever played. Easy choice to me.

  23. kljs says:


    That open letter about DRM to the community had been removed. And replaced with something else.

    This action makes me feel something is amidst with CPR, as one does not just write an open letter promising something, then removed it next with no trace of it.

    Call me paranoid or whatever, but if you want people to trust you, then keep the open letter. Unless you have something to hide about it, then there must be something wrong with that letter if they have to remove it.