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Shadowrun Returns brings back one of our most original & cherished game settings as a 2D turn-based RPG for tablets & PC.
Shadowrun Returns brings back one of our most original & cherished game settings as a 2D turn-based RPG for tablets & PC.
Shadowrun Returns brings back one of our most original & cherished game settings as a 2D turn-based RPG for tablets & PC.
36,276 backers pledged $1,836,447 to help bring this project to life.

DRM's End

Hey Everyone!

We just want to send out a quick update to share some good news. Thanks to a new agreement we were able to negotiate with our partners at Microsoft, Harebrained Schemes is pleased to announce that we are now able to release fully DRM-free versions of Shadowrun Returns and future expansions such as Berlin.

The DRM-free versions of SRR and Berlin will continue to be fully supported. You'll be able to download all game patches, use the Shadowrun Returns editor and experience user-generated content downloaded from third-party sites such as Nexus.

We’re starting work to get Shadowrun Returns available on right now - not sure how long that will take but we’ll let you know as soon as we have an answer.

We’re very excited we’re finally able to offer Shadowrun DRM-free to everyone and look forward to making it available!

Take care,



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    1. Missing avatar

      fil-cat on


      Guys, you rule. You just mad my day - my whole year in fact.
      This is ... *no words* ... i will just go with "freaking f****** galacticly awsome" for now.

    2. iwantarobot on


      Very, very pleased to hear this, if only because DRM makes the future playability of a game as a piece of history suspect - one of the greatest things about the PC as a platform for games is The Glorious PC Gaming Back Catalogue. Since backward compatibility on consoles seems to have been widely axed for possibly cannabalising potential Enhanced Remake sales its great to see a game developer take the long view.

      That new DRM drenched version of Sim City EA released was the New Coke of PC gaming and deserves to be recognised and remembered as the bulldrek it is.

      Please pass on my thanks to all parties who got together and made this happen. Too often games companies and related parties only get hate mail from rabid fans acting like a berzerk rentamob.

      Your company together with all the parties that have made this happen made a lasting difference with this decision. I and many others are really and deeply grateful.

      Please accept this gift of a 100 AzScript voucher.

      Redeemable at any StufferShack for the next 71 hours, 55 minutes and 48 seconds. Please remember that this voucher is tied to your personal SIN (SURNAME: LLCSCHEME, FIRST NAME HAREBRAINED) and is non transferable. Possession of this voucher by a third party may be prosecuted as theft of Intellectual Property at the discretion of the relevant juristion. Possession of this voucher by a person not broadcasting a SIN, or broadcasting a criminal SIN outside terms of indefinite parole may be construed (but not limited to) crimes of espionage, treason and/or terrorism.

      Terms and Conditions apply. StufferShack and its parent company reserve the right to refuse this voucher for nonspecific reasons of exterritorial corporate security. Void where not legal. Your statutory rights (if applicable) are may or may not be relevant.

      Thank you for continuing to support Aztechnology.

    3. Hideo Kuze on

      Great news!
      Glad someone saw the light :)

    4. Juez on

      And the spanish translation ? :_(

    5. Atticusmj on

      This is great news it was so sad to hear how DRM free thing went after backing $125 then geting told that later add ons after 1st would not be DRM free it was well... a huge kick in the nuts really thank you for fixing this

    6. Missing avatar

      Lion on

      Better late than never.

      It should have been that way to begin with but you still get some credit for making it happen.

    7. Missing avatar

      Legio Morbidius on

      Sweet, DRM-free is nice! :D

    8. Chet on

      I still can't believe Berlin is taking so long.

      Look at the size and scope of some of the player made adventures and they were made by one person in they're spare time.

    9. Siilk on

      Great news! It was unfortunate to see such a great game hindered by DRM at it's launch so I am delighted that this days are finally over. Thanks for having the guts to finally do the right. :)

    10. Missing avatar

      EvAk on

      I am glad that you changed to DRM-free, is it possible to get a copy on GOG in addition to the Steam Code (already redeemed)? I hope you get the save function fixed and then this game can really shine!

    11. Ryan "Keokuk" Smith on

      I'm very pleased to see that you guys could get this back in, I dislike DRM out of principle, but is also very costly for very little effectiveness. Glad to know that you were still working on this :) definitely makes me happier to hear.

    12. Navagon on

      Fantastic news and much appreciated! It can't have been easy to strike that deal so thanks for that. Can't wait to see this game on my GOG shelf. :D

    13. Céline .S. Sauvé on

      Good news. Will backers get GOG copies, or so we have to find them on third-party sites (or continue to use yours)?

      I haven't completed the game yet as I was waiting for patches then lost the internet at home, so I'm wondering where to get them once I'm set up at home again.

    14. Jaysyn on

      That is awesome HBS. I'm going to go ahead & put it out there that I will buy every expansion & DLC you ever release for this game because you were able to make this happen.

    15. Missing avatar

      Keith Rothman on

      Thanks for working this out with Microsoft. After the previous update I didn't think this would happen, and am glad I was wrong.

    16. meganothing dread bard of torment BOSB on

      Excellent news. Congratulations on wrestling successfully with the 800 pound gorilla.

    17. Avarchillion on

      Yay! Another saved from the clutches of the hated DRM!
      Rejoice and sing praises to the heros that thwarted the dreaded Microsoft in its never ending hunger to conquer the free world.


    18. Missing avatar

      Dan McQueen on

      It will be good to have it on GOG because they actually bothered to make the original fallout games work on windows 7 while the steam version won't. So hopefully it will mean that future generations will be able to play campaigns in SRR irrespective of the version of windows they need for their hardware to work.

    19. Missing avatar

      LionXavier on

      Congratulations, Harebrained team. This is something that had to be done, and you did it.

    20. Valeriy on

      In the light of recent events Humble Store will be the best choice for DRM-free version on Linux.

    21. Missing avatar

      AstralWanderer on

      Good news and well done to HBS for pursuing this issue - MS still deserve an onion for causing the hassle in the first place though.
      HBS may find the Humble Store a good option for distribution, since it offers the choice of Steam keys, GOG keys, direct (DRM-free) download and even BitTorrent. They can offer Linux, OSX and Windows versions and would seem the best option for a cross-platform game.

    22. Missing avatar

      Thomas on

      @PegasusOrgans, HBS does deserve credit for fighting for this. But, without people making a stink about it and asking for refunds, it would have been substantially harder to justify demanding a DRM free version.

      The situation sucked for everybody, but without people opting out of the rewards and for their money back, it would have been hard for Jordan or any of the guys at HBS to say that players hate this enough to boycott the product. Which is generally needed in order to convince a publisher to allow a DRM free option.

      I like GOG and I think they're a good option, but I'd like to make sure that they find another store that's DRM free and can provide a Linux option as well.

    23. Missing avatar

      Emeraude on

      @jh: What Steam brings is in no way dependent on the DRM though. The DRM component could be totally eradicated from it (willful non-mandatory registering of the games for those that want the services) , and you could still have the conveniences you mentioned.

    24. Missing avatar

      Jeremy on

      Congrats now all we need is GOG to offer Linux and we are all good. Quick everybody who sent threatening whiny comments to Harebrained Schemes, send them to GOG. That said you are doing great at supporting the Shadowrun community. You have or are addressing all the major complaints. Thank You

    25. Missing avatar

      jh on

      @Xod: That's not the entire truth. Steam offers something that the DRM free systems before it didn't: Having a place where all your games are and not having a need for finding the install media when you want to play something you haven't touched in a while.

    26. Harebrained Schemes LLC 4-time creator on

      Thanks for the comments and questions!

      It's still too early to answer questions about GOG keys and such, so stay tuned. We're excited but there's still work to do.

      Regarding the DLC vs. Expansion question: from a contractual point-of-view, there is no difference. The Shadowrun Returns product line can be sold DRM-free. :)


    27. Senchaholic on

      Good. You're forgiven. :)

    28. Missing avatar

      Count Raven on

      This is lovely to hear. It is good to know that there are developers like yourself who will go the extra length to improve there game.
      I am looking forward to adding Shadowrun Returns and all the DLC you create to my GOG account.

    29. Muad'Dib on

      Congratulations on your decision.

    30. British on

      Whoa, paradigm-shift, that's unexpected and great !
      Wouldn't have hoped for anything better than GoG...

      And no, no apologizing here, the initial bad move is still considered a bad move.
      This one is a *very* good move, though.

    31. Missing avatar

      Emeraude on

      @Mihnea Murgeanu:

      Some of us even remember - I kid you not - the time before Starforce and how much more convenient it was to not be forced to deal with either form of DRM. When, once you had paid them, you could access your bought games on your terms, and not be co-dependent on the goodwill of a third party to do so.

      As for apologizing ? No.

      HBS deserves praise for struggling to deliver what was promised as much as it deserved to be chastised for not delivering on its original engagement when it didn't.
      I commend the people working there for what they did, and my respect for them is strengthened. Doesn't mean I think they weren't in the wrong before.

      (That being said, reading some of the comments here: damn it does sound like we're an insatiable Danaides's jug /laugh)

    32. Missing avatar

      The Random One on

      Excellent news. Also hoping that we'll be able to get a GoG key, but personally since I've bitten the Steam bullet already this development is good enough news for me.

    33. Datayum on

      @Mihnea: Steam is more insidious because its a comfortable DRM. Like a comfortable jail. It's comfortable as long as you don't watch out the window and see a better place to be.

    34. Missing avatar

      Will on

      Great news.

      (give it a rest, Mihnea)

    35. Mihnea Murgeanu on

      Thank you... now some people should apologize for raging over this ...
      I still believe Steam is ok.
      Nobody remember Starforce or the 'UBI system'?

    36. PegasusOrgans-AGL 589 on

      EAT THAT, backers that treated HBS for having to go by Microsofts rules. HBS was fighting for you the entire time. Thank you guys!

    37. gandalf.nho

      Great news! And will be possible backers get a GOG key?

    38. Missing avatar

      William Nabors on

      Just curious. Am I able to switch my steam copy over to a DRM free? I hate having to use Steam because of their setup (require online access at all times to play offline games) but it seemed the only choice to get some of the later content. Now that that negative is lifted am I able to switch over?

    39. Lost-brain -Obsidian Order Dark Goddess on

      Very good news... But will it be too late for backers to have GoG keys if (when ?) the game will be release there ?

    40. Alex Valero "Danda" on

      At last! Great news! :)

    41. The Evolutionary on

      I may get a copy from for a friend, although...I'd like to give it to them for Linux so...perhaps I can buy it from you or perhaps the Linux version will be available a Desura.

    42. Jalister on

      Absolutely amazing news! Way to go HBS! Between working on the save system, and renegotiating for DRM free, you've earned back those respect points. Thanks.

      I'm glad to know that I will be able to play expansions after the main game and Berlin now.

    43. Morten Poulsen

      Great news! Thanks a lot for pursuing this, and talking some sense into Microsoft (a feat in itself). I think you earned yourself some Karma :-)

    44. Missing avatar

      TheDavisChanger on

      Amazing news like this is not getting us any closer to a Dystopian future.
      I'm really glad to see that future support and content will be available to more people.

    45. Jörn Huxhorn

      Awesome news! I'll definitely return if you are going to do extensions/DLC on Kickstarter. You lost my trust but I'll now forget about this whole issue.

    46. Missing avatar

      Grzegorz Koczyk on

      Thanks for this unexpected good news ! At least for me, this recharges quite a lot of faith for gaming Kickstarter projects.

    47. Missing avatar

      satsukirin on

      Hey, nice. Really glad to see this.

    48. Missing avatar

      Nubcakes on


      Now, pardon me for being cynical, but I noticed that you didn't say DLC would be supported in the DRM-free versions. You guys said that future expansions would be. There is a big difference between an expansion and DLC.

      Could you guys clarify if you mean "expansions AND DLC", or just "expansions"?