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Official Civilization V Steamworks FAQ

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Technical Support' started by 2K Greg, Jul 26, 2010.

  1. Thyrwyn

    Thyrwyn Guardian at the Gate

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    The Steamworks API is much more than a DRM system - as Greg indicates elsewhere in this thread, many of Civ V's community features are built using Steamworks, which is why Steam is required to be running - it is essentially part of the game.
     
  2. 2K Greg

    2K Greg <span style="font-weight:bold; text-decoration: un

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    As said in my post that you quoted, mods are not handled by Steam in any way.
     
  3. PieceOfMind

    PieceOfMind Drill IV Defender Retired Moderator

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    Thank you for the FAQ Greg.
    I'm glad to see lots of questions have now been answered.

    If my understanding is correct, it looks like using online mode (which is obviously going to be what most people do most of the time since it will be essential for community features including the mod hub) equates to forced game updates. I find this a bit troubling but I can understand there would be reasons for it. As a modder it concerns me and I'll most likely hold off on making any mods that reach deep into the code until I see how the patching process goes and how the more experienced modders handle it. High level mods might be fairly safe from the patches though, by the sounds of things. :)

    EDIT... And if I may clarify one thing. You mentioned that you can make separate backups of different versions (or perhaps I'm putting words in your mouth? oops), but you also said that re-installing an older version would still require a validation. Is it correct to assume that if you attempted to restore (or re-install) the game from a backup which was an older version, upon validation it would detect a new version and automatically update the game? If that's the case, I wouldn't see any reason in bothering to keep backups of older versions - they would be useless essentially.
     
  4. Sahkuhnder

    Sahkuhnder Delusions of grandeur

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    Steam is other things as well, but Steam is also the DRM system. Bello is asking if the Steam DRM system will be set to intervene and prohibit if a mod uses any part of DLC content. Civ4 allowed the modification of existing content so it is a reasonable question to ask if Civ5 will be the same or if the always-on Steam DRM system will impose a new level of restrictions.

    And there is no reason that we are forced to have Steam run in offline mode except for DRM purposes.


    ====================

    Do you know that the Steam DRM system won't scan game content in order to enforce DRM restrictions? That is the question Bello is asking.

    In offline mode there is no need to force Steam to run just so we can have the "Steam overlay" or whatever. They could easily have allowed the game to be played in offline mode without Steam being forced to be concurrently running. Steam is the DRM, that's why it's running. As the DRM, Bello is asking what the Steam DRM rules are regarding mods making use of DLC and if the new always-on Steam DRM will impose new restrictions that were not on Civ4 mods.


    EDIT- Edited for clarity.
     
  5. 2K Greg

    2K Greg <span style="font-weight:bold; text-decoration: un

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    I don't think I've ever said that. Your assumption is correct, however, that if you restored from a backup, Steam would require the game to be patched to the latest version after the restore.

    The reason people backup the game files to an archive is so that they can reinstall the game (after an OS reinstall, or when moving to a new computer, or what have you) without having to download the whole thing again.
     
  6. Sahkuhnder

    Sahkuhnder Delusions of grandeur

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    If mods are not handled by Steam in any way then can you please just answer Bello's question and confirm that the Steam DRM will not restrict "mods making use of DLC content"?

    Just a simple yes or no would be fine. I also would like to know if we will be allowed to mod existing content like in Civ4 or if there are new Steam DRM imposed restrictions.


    EDIT- Edited for clarity.
     
  7. 2K Greg

    2K Greg <span style="font-weight:bold; text-decoration: un

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    I don't have any information on how mods will or will not interact with DLC at this time. We'll be discussing mods in detail in the coming months, and at that time I'd be happy to answer all the questions I can manage about the modding system.
     
  8. Souron

    Souron The Dark Lord

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    One question for the FAQ: Under what conditions are the policies outlined here subject to change?

    Yes, between the lack of VAC and the info on what data steam collects, I don't see how it could possibly enforce further DRM restrictions.

    Yes, it might be possible to create a decoupled version of civ V, but then the authentication requirement will not work, and in general there would be no benefit to Civ V to do so. It would involve writing new code for some menus handled by steam. It would attract the people who object to steam's TOS, but that's the only benefit.
     
  9. Dale

    Dale Chieftain

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    So we can expect an announcement on the other fan sites soon? :)
     
  10. Sahkuhnder

    Sahkuhnder Delusions of grandeur

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    I don't know if you took the time to read the whole discussion but that's not the main topic of contention. I understand that they have chosen to have Steam be required to be running at all times while Civ5 is being played. The topic is the forced always-on nature of the Steam DRM and what that DRM does after the initial authentication check is completed, i.e., what that forced always-on activity includes in the way of any scanning of mods for existing game or DLC content. If mods are found to be using existing content will we be allowed to use those mods like we could in Civ4 or will the Steam DRM add a restriction to prohibit us from playing Civ5 in the same way we could in previous Civ versions.


    I ask you to provide the links to back up your claims. :D

    I just asked Greg if the Steam DRM scanned mods for DLC content and he said he didn't know, "I don't have any information on how mods will or will not interact with DLC at this time".

    Steam DRM does have to do it's job as a DRM system and part of that job is to protect the paid DLC mod content. If Steam didn't interact with DLC then it would be a dismal failure as one person could purchase a DLC mod and give it away to everyone else. What prevents this from happening? Steam - by Steam interacting with the DLC mod and preventing unauthorized use of said DLC mod.

    So yes, Steam, through the Steam DRM program, has something to do with mods.
     
  11. Dale

    Dale Chieftain

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    This is completely incorrect. I can guarantee 100% that if that option is set to "do not update", then it will not update, regardless if you're online or not. :)
     
  12. Grey2ham

    Grey2ham Chieftain

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    Greg, not going to bother making a new topic on this, and I hope you read this thread:

    I've had a crazy half-baked idea:

    Would it be possible for you (or Firaxis) to provide a second copy of the game installed in the /steamapps/common (can't remember the exact steam directory at this time) directory of a set previous version that was not subjected to auto-updating until an agreed/forwarned time.

    For example the games library would list something like this:

    Other Games
    Civ 5
    Civ 5 fixed version 1.0
    Other Games

    With the directories being:

    /steamapps/common/Civ5
    /steamapps/common/Civ5fv

    Then as there are two versions one could be updated via steam's auto-patching constantly (Civ 5), and the other could be left as a base version until a pre-determined time or limit has been reached. For example Civ 5 reaches 1.2 therefore fixed version is updated to 1.1 (through steam), this example is assuming the patching goes something like 1.0 - 1.024 - 1.036, etc.

    I understand this creates duplicity in terms of installs however Its a simple copy and paste of the Civ5 directory contents in the first instance. No different IMO to a back-up copy or the process I went through everytime a patch was released (copying the whole directory before patching). As the game is linked to steam only one copy could be run at a given time.

    This would allow a stable platform for mods to be played on (civ5 fixed version) and the mod developers access to the latest version (Civ 5) for mod compatibility testing. If a patch breaks a mod hopefully the mods creator would find out first and it wouldn't need to be updated until the fixed version update is released. Provided people use the mod on fixed version.

    Apologies for wall of text but i think this may be a good way around (not solution) to some peoples concerns.
     
  13. fed1943

    fed1943 Chieftain

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    If I change to a new hard disk, or I change from Windows XP to Windows 7, or if I need to format
    my hard disk:

    Do I keep my Steam account, can I play the game?

    My thanks in advance.
     
  14. isndl

    isndl Chieftain

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    I asked this question originally, and it doesn't quite answer the question I was trying to ask (my apologies for not making it clear enough originally).

    I understand that Steam will be logged out on the home machine. My question is, what happens to Civilization 5? Does it continue to run, or does it shut down (after saving, hopefully) along with Steam logging out?
     
  15. Commander Bello

    Commander Bello Say No 2 Net Validations

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    This is quite a valid question - think about family accounts, where one member is playing Civ5, while another member in the next room would try to launch another game from that same account.

    And as far as I understand it, the core of the question is whether Steam will provide a functionality to safely shut down the game (especially Civ5) being run on the first login?
    This becomes even more a concern since Steam might be launched as soon as Windows is started on the second computer.
     
  16. BobTheRabbit

    BobTheRabbit Chieftain

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    Yes, this was very similar to my original question. My wife and I often play Civ IV together on our LAN at home. Are we going to need two Steam accounts for this to work? And, if so, does that mean that we need to purchase two copies of Civ V? That would be quite unfortunate...

    Da Rabbit
     
  17. lietkynes

    lietkynes Hello sword !

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    If you are in offline mode, technically there is nothing preventing you from using the same account on 2 machines at the same time, but keep in mind that it's against the eula.
     
  18. The_J

    The_J Say No 2 Net Validations Retired Moderator

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    Moderator Action: To keep this thread slim and to not create another steam discussion/rant here, the ongoing discussion and everything which is not at minimum an answer to a secondary FAQ related question has been moved to this thread.
     
  19. 2K Greg

    2K Greg <span style="font-weight:bold; text-decoration: un

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    Sahkuhnder, I think your question is very clearly answered by this entry in the FAQ:

    Plain and simple: Steam will not validate mods.

    You keep your Steam account forever. As stated by the FAQ, you can install/reinstall Steam on an unlimited number of computers and unlimited number of times. After reinstalling your operating system you will either redownload the game via Steam, or restore from a Steam-created backup. The backup simply prevents you from having to download the whole thing again; you don't need to make one to ensure access to your game.

    You would be unable to access the online and community features on your home machine. The game will not automatically quit.

    In order for two people to play Civilization V simultaneously, you will need two copies of the game.
     
  20. GeoModder

    GeoModder Chieftain

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    So Steam gets installed from a boxed copy. Nice service for those who don't have it installed yet.
    A question on that: when steam is installed from a boxed copy, will it invite the installer to create a Steam user account in order to activate the game? I mean somewhere during the installation process of the game. I'm asking because I'd like to know how easy/hard it will be to activate my game.
     

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