Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Valve’s Doug Lombardi talks SteamWorks

Following up from yesterday's announcement, the good folks at Rock, Paper, Shotgun have put up an interview with Valve’s Doug Lombardi where he talks about the ramifications of yesterday's release of SteamWorks for the PC gaming industry. Of particular interest is the idea of not supplying the executable of a game on a retail-purchased disk, instead after installing the game, the user would need to download the final key piece of the game from Steam before being able to play. The impacts of this on rampant PC game piracy could be immense.

RPS: How solid is Steam against the activities of villainous pirates?

Lombardi: It’s solid in what we call “day zero piracy”. We encourage people to preload, so we give the bits of a game away on Steam, but those pieces are useless until we supply the magical final parts that allow all those things to become game pieces, the same will be true of using Steamworks from a disc. All the art assets and game assets will be useless until a user authenticates them and gets the final pieces.

Head over to Rock, Paper, Shotgun for the rest of the interview.