Friday, May 10, 2013

Might & Magic: Heroes VI

A new expansion was recently released for Might & Magic: Heroes VI. I really liked the old Heroes games, so I asked Sky if he knew anything about this new version. He said it was like the old ones but without any real improvements. Well, that was good enough for me! Steam had the base game on sale (this is how I found out about the expansion) so I figured it was a reasonable thing to pick up. Not the expansion, not any of the DLC content... Just the base game that came out in 2011. I don't need cutting edge here, and actually tend to actively avoid cutting edge games because they tend to have bugs or be unfinished...

I download the huge game (11 gigs!) and settle in this morning to give it a spin. Steam launches some other game service (uPlay) which in turn launches Heroes VI. I eventually get into the game and find a bunch of options... Campaign, custom game, load game, options, unlock content... Those sorts of things. I want to play the campaign! Click on it and get given a list of locked campaigns and get prompted to go buy them. That's weird... I bought the game, right? It must have come with a campaign! Each of the locked campaigns has an 'enter your key here' window, so maybe I need to use the CD key again? Nope. When I try it says the key was already used (when I registered it in uPlay). Huh. Maybe when I bought the base game on Steam it didn't come with any campaigns?

Oh well, I can still figure out how the game works on a custom map, right? Wrong. It turns out every single custom map is also locked. I don't own any maps at all, but uPlay is happy to give me a link to the store so I can go buy them if I want. I don't want. I already paid money for the game and it should let me do SOMETHING!

Maybe I'm just missing the 'obvious' button that lets me play my game? I donno, I'm generally pretty good about figuring out new UIs. Eventually I turned to searching the internet for a solution. It now sounds like a patch Ubisoft put out for the new expansion completely broke the base game. uPlay isn't passing the CD key through to the game itself, so while it took and used my CD key it didn't actually do anything. So despite buying a game that's been out for a year and a half I've been burned by shoddy DRM and a buggy release.

How is this so hard? I should be able to buy an older game and just play it. I'm all for paying for games, but when garbage like this happens it makes me just want to go pirate the game. I can't play the game I paid you for because of your bad attempt to keep me from stealing it. It isn't actually keeping anyone in the know from stealing it. It's just pissing me off.

1 comment:

Jodie Page said...

Welcome to the land of DRM! I bought HoMM6 last weekend too and wasn't able to play it until last night. I think they're fixing accounts individually so it'll work eventually. The entire game was down for everyone.

If you're looking for something to play in the meantime, you can buy HoMM3 on GoG! http://www.gog.com/gamecard/heroes_of_might_and_magic_3_complete_edition I think most people regard it as the best Heroes (and it was the one we had when we were younger!)