Borderlands PC DRM loyally guards street date; Pitchford unable to order stand-down

Isn't this what we all feared would happen when the machines took over? Even the boss's hands are tied in the curious case of consumers legally purchasing copies of Borderlands for PC, only to be barred from playing until the game's official street date, October 26, which is six days later than the console release. On publisher 2K Games' forums, the conspiracy theory abounds -- it's a tactic to boost console sales! -- but the obvious conclusion is that the digital rights management (DRM) technology in place to "protect" the game's release date unnecessarily punishes consumers.

Big Download contacted Randy Pitchford, president of Borderlands development studio Gearbox Software, who said, "I don't know if something can be done to unlock copies for people that somehow get a copy before the street date ... I certainly can't do anything about it." Pitchford's sympathetic, of course -- which reminds him of, ugh, Valve's Half-Life 2 DRM -- but as a developer there's not much he can do once the game's been handed over to the publisher and surrounded by unflinching DRM.

"I know how that feels," Pitchford related. "I'm sorry it's happening to customers of Borderlands, and I wish there was something I could do about it."

This article was originally published on Joystiq.