Antipiracy is practically the talk of the town in PC gaming circles. Which games have it, Which ones don’t Which games did have it, but it’s already been cracked so you don’t have to worry about it. You know, that sort of thing. But the key here is that more and more often, Denuvo DRM is causing trouble for games, being cracked incredibly quickly, and sometimes even being removed after a game is cracked or falls from favor. This may make one wonder, is the DRM even worth having?
Denuvo DRM is bad for players. This is clear. Sonic Mania had a horrible problem at launch, because of it. The game was supposed to be playable offline, but because of Denuvo was forcing people to stay constantly online to check in and prove they owned it. In Rime, there were slowdown and stuttering issues. These are only two of the newest incidents where it caused problems for people. These are issues that would make the experience worse for folks.
This “forces” people to crack it, which is bad for players and developers. It means extra trouble and work for everyone involved. Resident Evil 7’s Denuvo DRM was cracked in under five days. Rime’s was cracked one week after it was released. Sonic Mania’s took about eight days. Not to mention, DOOM’s was cracked too. This shows that DRM isn’t even working. When people who want to play are able to break through in about a week, it makes it pointless.
It is also bad for sales. Ever hear of review bombing? When it comes out that there is DRM, like Denuvo, in a game, people will leave tons of negative reviews on the game’s product page to voice their displeasure. It definitely has an impact on sales. People know what Denuvo can do to an experience. Developers and publishers will be subject to criticism. The creators of Rime, Tequila Works, even said they would remove it after the game was cracked.
Speaking of removal, what’s the point of having horrible DRM when a company is just going to take it out? Let’s go over all of the recent releases that had DRM, but ended up having it removed. Mass Effect: Andromeda, Hitman, Syberia 3, 2Dark, Homefront: The Revolution, DOOM, and INSIDE all had Denuvo removed. There are some big names there. In each case, the companies eventually realized leaving that DRM in was unnecessary. It took it out, which makes you wonder what the point of it all was.
We know companies need to protect their property. There has to be some measure in place. But Denuvo clearly isn’t the answer. It’s causing problems for people who are doing the right thing. It is being cracked quickly and made meaningless. When it is there, it has a negative effect on sales. And honestly, it seems like companies are fine with taking it out after the honeymoon period. So instead of sticking with something that isn’t working, why not drop this and move onto something better for everyone?