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Microsoft Touts Anti-Piracy, In-Game Stores and Roaming Gamer Profiles

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Microsoft has announced a small smattering of new features for its Live service at GDC. While there's nothing as exciting as November's NXE we're never opposed to getting free updates to an already pretty good service.

Live's anti-piracy measures, with "day-zero piracy protection and server-side authentication" probably won't excite many gamers. The system sounds pretty Steam-like in its implementation, requiring authentication of titles before online play is allowed. So far so dull.

The addition of an API enabling developers to create in-game Live Marketplace store fronts could prove more interesting. The idea, if you couldn't guess, being to better integrate the current Marketplace system into games, such as accessing DLC should be a less jarring experience.

Roaming is also likely to be a welcome addition, bringing the ability to store game settings along with the extant GamerTag data hosted by Microsoft. Exactly what settings are to be saved are unclear, but at the very least control layouts seem a safe bet.

No word on when these new features are set to hit Live - although some of them are dependant on parties other than Microsoft. Supposedly these are but a few of many improvements set to hit Live over the coming months, so we look forward to finding out what else is in store for us.

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