About a day after the demo's release, Xbox Live started doing an IP check before the download could be initiated, preventing anyone outside Japan from downloading a new copy of the demo, even if they used a Japanese gamertag. The demo could still be played however, with all features available, including online co-op play. Because of its small size (less than 480MB) the demo was also easy to copy from system to system.
Then, sometime in the last 24 hours, players with the demo noticed two things. The first was annoying, but understandable. Non-Japanese Gamertags were immediately logged out of Xbox Live when booting up the demo. This prevented anyone outside Japan from playing online. The second issue however has started to raise concern.
After logging in to Xbox Live with a non-Japanese Gamertag and attempting to start the Resident Evil 5 demo, Xbox Live actively corrupts the demo code rendering it completely unplayable – even in offline mode. This raises serious questions of DRM issues and official Microsoft policy, especially if Microsoft can disable any piece of software on your Xbox 360 at any time without any warning or recourse.
After confirming the issue on multiple consoles, WorthPlaying attempted to contact both Capcom and Microsoft for comment.
Chris Kramer, Senior Director of communications and community at Capcom said that Capcom US was aware that players outside Japan had downloaded the demo, but was very surprised to hear about the corruption issue. He assured us that it was not something that was planned or done at the request of Capcom US.
"This is the first that Capcom US has heard of the issue. We are looking into it with Microsoft and Capcom Japan and will have an update in 24 hours or less," said Kramer.
He also let us know that plans were in place to officially release the demo in the US and Europe and that Capcom would soon be making an announcement regarding the release timeline.
"Next week we will also be announcing our official plans for the release of the RE5 demo in US and Europe," said Kramer.
Microsoft was unavailable for comment at press time, but is looking into the issue. As soon as an official response is available from Microsoft we will update this story.
The biohazard threat has not ended: Just when it seemed that the menace of Resident Evil had been destroyed, along comes a new terror to send shivers down player’s spines. Chris Redfield, returning Resident Evil hero, has followed the path of the evil literally around the globe. After joining a new organization, Chris heads to Africa where the latest bioterrorism threat is literally transforming the people and animals of the city into mindless, maddened creatures. He is joined by a new partner, Sheva Alomar, who lends her strength, intelligence and sharp-shooting skills to the mission. In order to survive, Chris and Sheva must work together to take on the challenges of discovering the truth behind this evil plot. Utilizing a revolutionary new co-op mode of gameplay, players will be able to assume control of either Chris or Sheva and experience Resident Evil in new ways. In Resident Evil 5, Capcom will have players fearing the daylight as much as they have feared shadow in previous games.
- Chris Redfield, protagonist of the original Resident Evil and Resident Evil: Code Veronica, returns
- Chris is joined by new character Sheva Alomar, an African special agent tasked with investigating the epidemic
- 2 player co-op online gameplay means that players are not alone in their fight against the horror lurking around every corner
- Simultaneous global release date for both PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on March 13, 2009
- New enemies bring new challenges: speed and intelligence make adversaries as dangerous singly as they are in groups.
- An arsenal of weapons at the player’s command to keep the evil at bay, including knives, pistols, machine guns, sniper rifles and more.
- Lighting effects provide a new level of suspense in both harsh light and deepest shadow
- True high definition gaming on multiple game platforms, using an advanced version of Capcom’s proprietary game engine, MT Framework, which powered the next-gen, million-plus hit titles Devil May Cry 4, Lost Planet and Dead Rising.
Resident Evil 5 is currently scheduled for release in Japan on March 12, 2009, and in North America on March 13, 2009.
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