After being in contact with a Capcom PR representative, and making them aware of the situation, I've been informed today that an issue regarding securROM's end has been taken care of, and that the keys should be working now. I did attempt to authenticate my key, and did have success in authenticating the key in question, and now can play the game. Those affected by this issue should reattempt to authenticate their key in question. I thank the Capcom PR representative for tracking down the problem in question. I am uncertain at what specifically caused the problem at this time, and will be reaching out to securROM to find out more information.
Well, after about 2+ days of emails, I don't have a lot to show for it. Neither Capcom nor Valve has responded to inquiries at this point, and securROM has basically told me what the initial Activation Failed image told me via email, and to contact the publisher. So despite having purchased the game, and getting a serial number at that point, apparently I'm still unable to play the game.
There is a link here (thanks to Steam user Roosevelt.koh) that may lead to better results in attempting to fix the problem, but the lack of response on all three companies behalf is baffling. And apparently, the amount of urgency that the issue has in Capcom's eyes is in particular problematic, as they have basically not taken action or updated the thread on the invalid serial number issue in over 4 months now. Needless to say, there's a real lack of customer service for gamers here.
I know that I've written a lot of news stories over the past several months regarding Capcom and their problems regarding PC ports, but this latest problem enters a whole new level of issues regarding the company, and Steam in general. Currently, a promotion for Capcom games is being held on Steam with various cuts on Capcom published games like Remember Me, DmC: Devil May Cry, and various games from the Resident Evil franchise. One of these games is Dark Void, and it comes with a particular problem for the $2.00 (while on sale) title on Steam for those who purchased it; it doesn't actually work.
Several users have been indicating problems regarding activating the game thanks to "Invalid Serial Keys". The game uses a 3rd-party DRM known as SecuROM, which via their website indicates that it helps with digital rights management, "by securing intellectual property and by offering innovative business models, such as Try & Buy and value-added concepts such as downloadable content". But, it looks like that some of the problems regarding DRM hindering consumers is present here, as several customers are having to write tickets over to SecurROM's site in order to try to get things worked out. For the purposes of the story, I have also purchased a copy of the game in attempt to recreate the error in question, and I was not able to activate the game in question. Another member of the TechRaptor staff was able to activate the game, but he had the game within his library, and did not purchase it during the sale.
This has been another instance where DRM has caused problems regarding being able to play a purchased copy of the game, and the lack of quick response to meet the consumer's concerns. I have reached out to securROM, Valve, and Capcom in attempt to get more information, and will update this story when I have something of note. What's even more concerning about the situation is the fact that this does not seem to be the first instance of the problem happening, as user reviews have indicated that it's been an ongoing problem. The question of why the game is continued to be sold when problems like this occur remains a mystery, and why neither Capcom nor Valve has taken action on it.
Is this just another instance of the problems regarding DRM and 3rd-party DRM, or is this just an outlier for the system? Are you afraid that one day, games that you have purchased will suddenly be unplayable thanks to programs like these?