Unlink STEAM requirement

Talk about general things concerning Forged Alliance Forever.

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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby Defiant » 13 Jan 2019, 01:20

Steam link will retard the community; but, I appreciate there is no good alternative.

How can we accelerate resolving the root problem (and thus no longer require Steam Linking)? This is what we all want. How can I help?
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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby tatsu » 13 Jan 2019, 23:39

Defiant wrote:How can we accelerate resolving the root problem [...] How can I help?

contributing via patreon and/or becoming a FAF dev yourself are two good ways.
Run FAF + FA on linux, you can automate the whole install and setup process :
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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby Geosearchef » 13 Jan 2019, 23:50

Donating won't get you anywhere. FAF has more money than it needs and the rest won't be used on developement. Becoming a FAF dev will only help deltaforge (the patcher) if you have multiple years of experience with Java.
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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby Janus » 24 Jan 2019, 11:13

I just found and read through this thread, and I am typing this as I think, so please forgive a few typos if any slip by me.
I am not a lawyer, and I am trying to avoid legalese, the most cussable language ever invented.
What I am trying to illustrate are the concepts behind the thinking.
I speak for myself, no one else.

People have asked why the steam link.
The answer is that in order to make updates, modified versions of the original files of the game are sent out.
The modified files sent out are examples of descendant or derivative work.
A derivative work is one that depends on or comes from another, in programming it could be a derived class.
While the derived class has attributes or capabilities the parent does not, it cannot exist without or independent of that parent.
What FAF does is take an original file, modify it, then send it out to be used by others.
Thus the FAF files could not exist without the original files they're made from.
This makes FAF a derivative work, keep that in mind.

The alternative is to send out DIFF files, which is what the patches from GPG were.
A DIFF file is basically a file that contains a list of files to be modified, an index into those files, then a way of identifying the exact part to be replaced, then what it is to be replaced with.
The patches basically mounted the SCD{zip} files as drives, then navigated their file system to make changes.
This is why updates seemed to take forever, it was rewriting the entire contents of the game, perhaps more than once.
Explaining why it is done the way it is, which also makes it simple to unmod, something the original system does not support.

This is the end of the sane, logical, straight forward portion of this exercise.
It has been posited that the rights holder(Enix) may want to sue visionex for money because there is money in that direction.
While this is an understandable and logical supposition, it is also incorrect.

A game is an asset, a thing you are making money from, or can.
It has value in the form of immediate sales, and future sales.
These are tangibles, things you can hold in your hand.
The DVDs can be converted to cash by trading/selling them to customers.
The sales generate a reputation, people know you by the game, and the game by you.
Would you buy simcity made by bungie? How about halo made by maxis?
That reputation is called an intangible, meaning it can be turned into money or other resources.
The value of intangibles is where we get the stock market, real estate values, and lots more fun.

The more closely held a thing is, the more its value is concentrated.
While FAF does beyond doubt generate sales, something even Enix would admit I believe.
It also dilutes value of the intangible held by Enix, because a second entity is now involved.
That dilution lowers the value held by Enix, even if FAF gains nothing from it.
That can work to FAFs advantage if enough people by SCFA in a short enough time, by inspiring them make another game.
Yet if those sales are low, even if consistent, they can actually lower the odds of another game being made.
High sales prompt another game in the series, low enough sales prompt a reboot, yet middling sales freeze everything in place waiting for the scales to tip one way or the other.

The important part here though, is dilution.
If Enix lets FAF keep distributing the modified files, they are loosening their grip, putting them on a slippery slope.
If they let the practice continue to get the short term sales, they can xerox themselves.
I use that example on purpose here because for a while Xerox became a household word, and they nearly lost the trade mark on their own company name because of it.
Xeroxing it, or making a Xerox of it, merged into the everyday lexicon.
The company name became synonymous with making copies, and getting their own name back was a battle.
This happened because Xerox no longer meant the company, it meant a machine or process to make a copy.
Which badly hurt them when they finally got real competitors, because getting a xerox meant buying a copier, not a xerox copy machine.

If Enix lets it go on, they are saying they have no intention of doing anything with SCFA, which lowers the value of the intellectual property, and the company holding it.
That lowering also reduces the odds of a follow on game being made, by them, or anyone.

This is why the steam link requirement was emplaced, so it can be proven that all of the people exchanging the copy righted or derived files are owners of the game.
This makes the practice legal under fair use, while preserving and defending trade marks, copy rights, and patents.
If on the other hand it can be shown, or have doubt cast upon the practice, then it could be argued that FAF could be inducing, contributing to, or abetting piracy.

The sue ball is a cover for a business trying to ride the line between short term sales, and long term valuation.
As irritating, infuriating, and insufferable as steam is, their records will hold hold up in court as evidence of a good faith attempt on FAFs part to prevent piracy.
While the inducement claim could be still be made by Enix, doing so would pit them against the ability to have third party online channels, which they will avoid at all costs.
Preventing third party channels would make them another apple or other monopolist, which would soon enough put them out of business, and sold off for pennies on the dollar.

This is vastly simplified, and I have purposely glossed over some parts.
My goal is to convey an idea, or a concept, not to spout legalese.
Enix wants the money from the sales without giving up control of their property.
Visionex is saying we are not pirating, we are if anything, helping sales.
Both sides are staying out of court, while preparing just in case.

For my part, I do not have steam, nor shall I ever.
Nor shall I ever run W10, I do not run spyware, I clean it.

I am making a set of directions for people to be able to take the code from github, then run it without having to install or use the client at all.
This WILL NOT HELP! with online play, all it will allow is skirmish, local or lan play with the updates.

I hope this adds understanding, and perhaps helps.
Only time will tell if who if anyone is correct about what comes next.

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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby PhilipJFry » 24 Jan 2019, 11:40

Feel free to tell the owner of faf to ignore the legal advice of his lawyer and to listen to random ppl on the internet who would like a smaller barrier of entry to this platform.

I'm sure he'll be thrilled to listen to you.
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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby Janus » 29 Jan 2019, 09:40

I am not sure how you think I am saying visionex should not protect himself, he must.

All I was saying is that enix are doing what they have to protect the ownership/value of their property from legal/corporate perspective.
Which necessitates the normal counter response of self protection.
This is what happens, life.
All sides going through the motions in a dance nearly everyone understands except the end users, the ones who actually pay the money everyone else involved is trying to get.

The game company wants enough activity/interest to keep sales going, yet they want to keep it below the point where piracy goes crazy, unless they can skip directly to the point of enough interest to make it worth making another game.
There is gap between very piratable and profit worthy, sometimes this is large, other times it is thin.
Corporations are bad at riding this line, always have been, always will be, it is inherent in their structure.

The only even semi easy way to change this is to purchase the IP.
Sadly this is not normally an option since enough interest to raise the money to purchase it, also means there is a market to be met by producing another game in the series.
It takes a long time for stuff to degrade enough in value to be tossed out, or purchased.

Sad, but this is life.

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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby Cuddles » 29 Jan 2019, 20:36

enix? 4head.

GPG. Chris Taylor is a legend. John Mavor was the lead engineer.

Whatever reputation you think enix has or had or ever will have here is in your imagination.
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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby Janus » 29 Jan 2019, 20:44


I thought enix was the ones who had it, it appears I am wrong.
Been so before, I pay little attention to the IP side of things since most of the players on the money make it as hard as possible to determine who actually owns things.

Please substitute who ever owns the IP now as you read, or let me know and I will edit my post(s).

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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby keyser » 30 Jan 2019, 01:59

He can still play faf while many others cannot.

i hope that you are feather.
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Re: Unlink STEAM requirement

Postby HighLander-TX » 02 Feb 2019, 16:37

As i know most of players not read news in FAF(not know english, or just not like news), i warning some of my friends about steamlink, all of them missed that in news. :?
Some of FAF players can't login now. Few dollars thats a not a big cost to this Great game. But all know how to buy in internet? or have this possibility? Maybe a simple villagers.
I'm lucky to have retail DVD since GPG times (there only license allowed). Just need that Steam now, only for send my key, i no idea how its work, because never use it before. But i will try later. Have alot of work now. I'll be back when someone get more played battles in FAF as me ;)
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