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Driver PC: always-on internet required

Uplay unlocks "bonus features".

Dark blue icons of video game controllers on a light blue background
Image credit: Eurogamer

The PC version of Driver: San Francisco requires a permanent internet connection, Ubisoft has confirmed.

In a Tweet from the official Driver Twitter account in response to a follower question on the matter, community developer for Ubisoft on the Driver and Rabbids brand Mathieu Willem said: "PC version requires permanent internet connection."

Responding to a follower disappointed by the news, Willem Tweeted: "Bear in mind though that the PC version of DRVSF is released simultaneously to consoles."

Driver: San Francisco's game page on digital shop Steam sparked the discussion.

"3rd-party DRM: Ubisoft's Online Services Platform. Ubisoft requires a permanent internet connection to play this video game at all times," Steam says.

Meanwhile, in another Tweet, Ubisoft said with regards to the home console versions: "Online Uplay Passport activation required (once) for multiplayer and bonus features."

Uplay Passport is Ubisoft's version of the controversial online pass. It costs £7.99 on PS3 and PC while Xbox 360 owners pay 800 Points (£6.80).

"Uplay Passport-enhanced" games require gamers to input a code to unlock online modes and other "exclusive features". New retail versions include the code, while second-hand buyers must stump up for access.

Driver: San Francisco will be the first game to incorporate the system when it launches on 2nd September.

Ubisoft has endured a difficult time with PC gamers over its always-on internet DRM.

Last year the company told Eurogamer that its "online services platform" for PC games will "evolve and improve" but was here to stay.

"Most forthcoming Ubisoft PC titles will use our online services platform," a spokesperson explained, adding, "As with any online technology, we are constantly working to evolve and improve it."

Ubisoft's online platform requires PC gamers to be connected to the internet while they play. But problems arise when authentication servers are unavailable or unresponsive. This was felt first with Assassin's Creed II and Silent Hunter V and then with Settlers 7.

The result has been fans unable to play games they've purchased, sometimes for days at a time.

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