Resident Evil 7 is Capcom’s latest entry in the famous horror franchise. About a month before the game’s official release, it was revealed that the title would be protected by the infamous Denuvo Anti-Tamper DRM on PC. And now, less than five days after the game’s official release, the game’s DRM has been cracked.
While I won’t give out names or places to look as I’d rather not advocate piracy, a group that is well known for breaking Denuvo’s systems has released a cracked version of Resident Evil 7 less than a week from the game’s release, one of the fastest times for a Denuvo protected game getting cracked.
So what exactly does that mean? Well it means that Denuvo is becoming less reliable as a DRM for developers. While this might be a positive in the eyes of most gamers as Denuvo has often been viewed as anti-consumer to the point that players would boycott Denuvo protected games, it could also mean bigger problems in the future.
Despite its reputation, developers used Denuvo because it worked. During its initial release, it was one of the few DRM that successfully prevented piracy. But now that it’s starting to fall short in doing its job, developers might opt to use something even worse to continue protecting their games.
In addition to that, already released games that use Denuvo might be affected by this. If games stop using Denuvo then, sooner or later, Denuvo will shut down. But why should we care if a DRM company goes under?
The issue here is that Denuvo worked by going online and doing regular server checks to make sure players are using legitimate copies of the game. If Denuvo’s servers ever go down, either due to technical issues or bankruptcy, then this will make those games essentially unplayable.
Developers can opt to patch out Denuvo from their games. Both Playdead and Bethesda did this to Inside and DOOM respectively a few months after both game’s initial release. However, that’s still something outside of the player’s control despite having already paid for their games.