AsProtect vs Armadillo

Discussion in 'Indie Basics' started by Sybixsus, Feb 21, 2005.

  1. Sybixsus

    Sybixsus
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    Armadillo is pretty popular, I've noticed, but at $300, it's a bit overpriced IMO, particularly when you can get ASProtect for 1/3 of that. But how do they stack up? I know Plimus can automate Armadillo 2.x keys, whereas I'd have to supply a key list of my own with ASProtect, but that doesn't seem worth an extra $200 on it's own.

    I also noticed pages with tutorials on cracking ASProtect were quite commonplace, whereas pages for cracking Armadillo are thin on the ground. However, the ASProtect tutes weren't particuarly recent.

    Any thoughts and comparisons from people who have used both? I'm mainly interested in having a timed trial all taken care of in a wrapped exe, so I don't have to code it manually. It's a quick game that has taken a couple of weeks so far and I don't really want to double the dev time integrating and writing my own timed trial system.

    EDIT: AS Protect : http://www.aspack.com/asprotect.htm
     
    #1 Sybixsus, Feb 21, 2005
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2005
  2. Sirrus

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    Is Armadillo $300 now?

    Isnt the standard version $99?

    I'm not sure many of us have experience with ASProtect (haven't even heard of it), but I love Armadillo.
     
  3. Sybixsus

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    The standard edition is now $150, but from a read of the comparisons, the few missing features from the pro edition seem to be the best ones ;)

    The standard editions lacks a project setup wizard, compression, keys that expire after a number of minutes, keys that expire after a number of uses and the ability to show a reminder when exiting, which is most of what I like about Armadillo ;)
     
  4. george

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    there is another one called softwareKey, it's pretty expensive (starting at $329), but it looks really good. if you are planning to spend $300 on armadillo, check this one out first. http://www.softwarekey.com
     
  5. Sybixsus

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    Software Key looks interesting, thanks George. The multiple program license is a bit pricey at $500, but as you say, with Armadillo costing $300, it's certainly worth looking at both.

    I gather ASProtect is not very popular or widely known?
     
  6. sunnygames

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    We used to use ASPProtect and it is pertty good. However it does not have some functionality and some companies like Plimus does not support it.

    Recently we switched to Armadillo Pro and it is *really rocks*. Just for couple of hours we built in time restrictions into the game (as far as I know nobody here use this feature like we do), created new Plimus product and started selling our new game "Amazon Quest".

    BTW Armadillo has excellent support, usually your question willl be answered within 2-3 hours. Also they have really good forum.

    My recomendation to you is Armadillo Pro or Armadillo (but in this case you will miss some functionality).
     
  7. Sybixsus

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    Thanks for the comments. It does look as though I'll be going with Armadillo. Being able to have Plimus send the keys is a bonus, but Armadillo seems like more of a serious and complete product than any of the competition.
     
  8. Winterwolf

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    Create your own software protection mechanism, that's the way I do it. I can know what's going on and tweak to the tune I like.
     
  9. Jay_Kyburz

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    Nobody is going to think your cool because you wrote your own system. Spend the time polishing your game. The basic version of Armadillo does everything I need for $150. That's only 10 sales. (I hope I sell more than 10 copies)

    I hope to never write anything I can just pull off the shelf for a reasonable price.
     
  10. BoX

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    There are plenty of tutorials for cracking both of them. But, on the other hand it gets more difficulty to find one for more recent version of both of them.
    Anyway, considering using any of these two is cool idea, since they are good code protection tools. Unprotected code is always easier to crack than protected one (e.g. it took me 10 mins to crack Raptisoft's HamsterBall).

    I would not recommend developing protection system on your own.
    Armadillo and ASProtect are both protection tools built by experienced people. Building your protection system might take you much more time to develop resulting in much weaker protection.
     
  11. ibsta

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    I'm intereste in Armadillo very much. Can anyone tell my a very brief desciption of the mechanism Armadillo uses to protect your application? Does it right registry entries, does it run as a Windows service and protect your exe, or what?

    p.s I know I could have looked this up myself at the Armadilo site, but I'm really not in the mood to scroll the tomes and tomes of whitepapers for a simople question.

    Thnx!
     
  12. dburger

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    Experience with Armadillo

    Hello,

    I've used Armadillo with two games we released. I found it to be a good product and very well supported. We got great tech support from them. They went out of their way to help us solve a couple sticky problems we were having protecting a Flash game. (We were the first to try this and they bent over backwards to make it work for us.)

    Armadillo also is integrated with RegNow. You could easily distribute your game through several ecommerce providers if you choose. (Each has their own network of affiliates that you can take advantage of.)

    Good Luck.

    -Denis
     
  13. george

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  14. aiosup

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    Armadillo is no longer affordable...

    The problem is exactly that Armadillo seems to have grown from an affordable tool (pro version 1 was about $100 if I recall correctly) to a complete rip-off...

    Now the tech issue: takes about one day to write a copy protection system that can provide minimal protection - just about the level of protection you need to *claim* you have a secured product. Your game makes $300 each day? Then, yes, you definitely need pro stuff... Otherwise, probably 90% of the game buyers are going to be fenced off by the simple protection approach.

    ...and to clear figures: it takes one day (let's call it two for extra-testing) for the equivallent of $150 (or $300, if you need the extra-features of Armadillo), given your needs. You will get nowhere near the quality of the pros, but you don't need it, and your job gets done.

    ...into muddy waters: Multiply by code reusability and small binary overhead, add code ownership and the fact that RegNow and the likes offer you the possibility of uploading the registration source code itself (aside from uploading generated lists of registration codes)... I have just done the math.

    My conclusion is that you can spare $300 until you make more than this in sales per day, then go for the pros...
     
  15. stanchat

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    A friend of mine recommended a product called Shareguard to me and I finally checked it out. For the price ($29.95) it is actually pretty good. I played with the demo and was impressed. It does not appear to have the time limit demo feature (60 min etc..) but it had everything else.
     
  16. aiosup

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    One thing that I do not like about this program (and all other that do the following), is that it is impossible to have a customized registration screen. I would like to make my registration screen/warning window similar to my application look, and, if I can't, I see another reason for not investing even a single buck...
     
  17. stanchat

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    They do allow you to make customized skins for your screens using whatever bitmaps you like though, this option is under the tools tab. I do not know if this would fit your bill.

    A completely free program that I found is Trial Creator , it allows you to make a 30 day demo with a BUY NOW link. It does not have a lot of options but if you are looking for a quick way to make a 30 day demo for your game this will work. If you signup for their e-commerce solution more options will be exposed.
     
    #17 stanchat, Apr 1, 2005
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2005
  18. aiosup

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    Hmmm, probably not. I would like to have full control -- display nice preview pics of the full version, have flying saucers and alike :)

    That's an interesting and *free* alternative to writing my own thing, thanks!
     
  19. george

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    i'm resurrecting this thread because i just found another promising alternative to armadillo/asprotect. it's called "SerialShield SDK", and its only 79.95 euro or about $100 USD.

    http://www.ionworx.com/SerialShield.html

    I've read good things about it in newsgroups... Anyone have any personal experience with it or heard about it? They also have another product called ICE License, but its only for Borland C++ Builder and Delphi, and its like 300 euro for the pro version. http://www.ionworx.com/IceLicense.html

    Any thoughts? SerialShield looks really promising, it looks like it has all the features needed, like creating trials, generating serials, etc. etc.

    Thanks!
     
  20. Jay_Kyburz

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    Looks cool, but I'm still on the look out for a cross platform solution.

    I hope some enterprising young indie makes one soon. (hint hint)
     

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