Bandai Namco has recently updated Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Enhanced Edition for PC, and guess what the update brought with it? If the headline doesn't give it away, the Games For Windows Live DRM has been removed and replaced with Steamworks.
The update comes courtesy of a post on the official Assault Horizon group thread, where the announcement makes it known that Games For Windows Live has been patched out and replaced with Valve's free Steamworks SDK.
“...you can now update your Ace Combat Assault Horizon Enhanced Edition for PC game to replace the Games for Windows Live functionalities with Steamworks functionalities.“
Bravo Namco. This was the proper thing to do and I'm glad you're showing a lot of love to the community. If I haven't already bought Ace Horizon: Assault Horizon Enhanced Edition, I think I will just to show some support. I don't know if I already have it, I'll have to check my Steam library... but yeah, that was a good play Namco, good play.
For those of you who purchased the game via physical disc, the company offers some help in retrieving or adding the game to your Steam library so you'll still be able to access the title even after Microsoft shuts down Games For Windows Live starting July 1st.
Simply add a game to your Steam library and use the provided serial key to activate the game and have it implemented into your library. After installing and patching the game, be sure to head to the BETAS tab in the game's properties and join the “Acah-2.0-“ beta.
You can use the above method to also import previous save and achievement data, so for those of you worried about losing your stuff, you will be able to recover it. Didn't see that coming, eh?
Namco has also updated the game's main store page, indicating that new GFWL keys won't be activating on Steam, so you'll need to get the update to convert over saves and achievements to Steamworks...
“We are experiencing an issue with keys for Ace Combat Assault Horizon - Enhanced Edition. Currently, the keys we have do not activate correctly on Games for Windows Live. We are working with the publisher to get a fix in place.”
This game will join a slew of others who have been converted from GFWL to Steamworks, given that Microsoft will be shutting down the service soon. It's another warning sign as to why that “all-digital future” doesn't look so appetizing when you have these restrictive security services in place that hamper and impede gamers from enjoying the titles they rightfully paid for. Ironically enough, those who steal the game, the pirates, don't even have to worry about these restrictions.
Anyway, it's good to see Namco taking initiative here. Now if they can only put some fire under the booties of FromSoftware in order to get Dark Souls off GFWL and onto Steamworks, I think we'll all be happy... well, mostly.