Gamers have been up in arms ever since word got out about Ubisoft's internet-required DRM scheme. It seems that a worst-case scenario has happened, as owners in of Silent Hunter V and Assassin's Creed II were unable to play due to Ubisoft's authentication server being down.
Ubisoft's latest DRM effort will not allow its game to play unless there is a connection between the player and the publisher's servers. If anything should happen at either end, the player – even if in the middle a game – will be ejected to the main menu screen. Over the weekend, Ubisoft's servers went down, which left gamers with relatively new games unable to play.
North American weren't as largely affected by the downtime as Assassin's Creed II doesn't launch here until Tuesday, but those in Australia and Europe held back from their games show a critical weakness in this form of DRM.
An Ubisoft UK community manager commented in the official forum:
I don't have any clear information on what the issue is since I'm not in the office, but clearly the extended downtime and lengthy login issues are unacceptable, particularly as I've been told these servers are constantly monitored.I'll do what I can to get more information on what the issue is here first thing tomorrow and push for a resolution and assurance this won't happen in the future. I realise that's not ideal but there's only so much I can do on a weekend as I'm not directly involved with the server side of this system.
In another post, the same community manager wrote:
Due to exceptional demand, we are currently experiencing difficulties with the Online Service Platform. This does not affect customers who are currently playing, but customers attempting to start a game may experience difficulty in accessing our servers. We are currently working to resolve this issue and apologize for any inconvenience.
Source: Rock, Paper, Shotgun.