EA will use a moderate copy protection for The Sims 3. An online authentication will not be necessary.
The Sims 3 won't come without copy protection, but EA won't integrate an (secret) online authentication like it has been the case with several other games of the publisher. All content is delivered on the optical disc in the boxed retail version and a serial code is required to play the game.
To make use of the online features of The Sims 3 a registration at www.sims3.com is required - the serial key is needed. But according to our sister magazine PC Games the game can also be played in an offline mode that doesn't require an online connection.