Nokia engineer demonstrates easy pirating of Windows 8 games

One of the ways some developers make money from free games is through in-app purchases. Nokia engineer Justin Angel has demonstrated on his blog how easy it can be to dupe the game to bypass the requirement to pay for in-app purchases, according to The Verge. As of time of writing, the blog is unavailable due to high traffic.

While the process is by no means easy for the average users of Windows 8, it's still a relatively easy process for those who know how to edit programs. According to Angel, one of the pitfalls of Windows 8 games is that the operating system stores encrypted data locally, alongside with the algorithm, "and the algorithm key/hash is a recipe for security incidents."

Angel also shows how Windows 8 users can modify trial apps to obtain a full license along with the ability to remove in-app ads. There are other hacks that cover things like using a script to unlock more levels of a game.

Whole screen is a start button

Pirating games is not very difficult if you know programming


According to The Verge, a Microsoft spokesperson says it has taken a "variety of extra measures to help harden Windows 8" against hackers. "Any successful software distribution channel faces the challenge of being targeted by people wishing to circumvent the system for ill-gotten gains and we’re committed to ongoing protection of both customer and developer interests."

Back in October, it was revealed that Microsoft was originally not going to allow games that are rated higher than PEGI 16 on the Windows 8 store. This means no games with mature themes or violence would be allowed. Currently, some of these games include Skyrim, Mass Effect 3 and Dishonored – some of the biggest and most highly acclaimed games in recent times.

The software giant later backed off and announced that PEGI 18 games will be allowed on the Windows 8 store. The new rule for apps came into effect this month. According to the new rule: "Apps with a rating over PEGI 16, ESRB MATURE, or that contain content that would warrant such a rating, are not allowed, unless the app is a game, is rated by a third party ratings board, and otherwise complies with these certification requirements."

Before the operating system came out, major developers had been voicing concerns with it. Back in September, Markus “Notch” Persson spoke out against Windows 8 for the second time. "Got an email from Microsoft, wanting to help 'certify' Minecraft for Win 8," he tweeted. "I told them to stop trying to ruin the PC as an open platform." He added, “I'd rather have Minecraft not run on Win 8 at all than to play along. Maybe we can convince a few people not to switch to Win 8 that way.”

Back in August during QuakeCon, John Carmack had spoken out against Windows 8 in his keynote speech. Carmack mentioned that they started working on Windows 7 directly after XP, and that they had skipped Windows Vista entirely. "Hardly anyone at id used Vista. When Windows 7 was released," Carmack added, "it was a bit more attractive because it did some things better and faster. So there was no reason for him to consider switching to Windows 8." He said that no one in his team had worked on Windows 8 at the time. However, his team intended to do so because the launch of Doom 3: BFG Edition was very close to that of Windows 8.

Carmack stated that while he has much more respect for Microsoft than others, he has some doubts about the new touch-based UI in Windows 8, and whether it will be successful.

Published Date: Dec 12, 2012 02:19 pm | Updated Date: Dec 12, 2012 02:19 pm