NEW YORK (CNNfn) - MGM's latest, and most prominant, foray into the computer gaming business isn't going as smoothly as the company would like.
The studio has confirmed that WarGames, based on the 1983 movie of the same name, contains the Win32/Marburg.a virus in the electronic registration program. The WarGames game files are not infected with the virus.
Win32/Marburg.a infects executable files on Windows 95 and Windows 98 systems. It is a direct action virus, rather than memory resident, meaning an infected file must be run in order for the virus to infect other files. Once active, it deletes integrity checking databases in files to avoid detection by certain anti-virus products.
If left untreated, the virus will display an error icon (a red cross on a white screen) on the screen at a random date, according to Dr Solomon's, the maker of an anti-virus program. MGM, in a frequently asked questions file on its WarGames Web site, adds that your operating system may also begin to act irregularly.
MGM Interactive says it is working on a fix to the problem and expects to post anti-virus software to the WarGames Web site by Friday. The company additionally plans to contact consumers who have electronically registered the game and send them replacement game disks as well as Symantec Norton Anti-Virus disinfectant software.
Win32/Marburg.a is a relatively new virus that was undetectable when WarGames was being mass produced, says MGM. It became a widespread threat when it was accidentally distributed on a CD-ROM supplied with the UK version of PC Gamer in July.
Because game files are not infected, playing WarGames will not harm your system. MGM Interactive says all problems can be avoided by not launching the electronic registration process. However, it says, it will send a new copy of the game to any consumers who are worried about owning the infected disk.