Denuvo 5.5, the newest version from the controversial DRM company, and the iteration used in the extremely popular Resident Evil 2 Remake, has just been cracked. Observant internet denizens spotted cracks and repacks (pirated versions of games that use compression algorithms to reduce file sizes) have appeared online from cracking group CODEX for Resident Evil 2. Resident Evil 2 Remake was released on January 25th to rave reviews.
This news is something that pirates are celebrating, and contrary to commonly held beliefs about Denuvo, it appears as though RE2’s PC port didn’t suffer from any major performance setbacks as a result of DRM.
There are of course other current and future releases which use this new variant of Denuvo. Ace Combat 7 is also using Denuvo 5.5 and the highly anticipated Metro Exodus has been reported to include the software. With the hype around these games though, it seems likely that pirated versions will surface shortly after release. And many gamers are responding angrily to the decision to offer Metro Exodus exclusively for one year via Epic Games, and now some openly planning to pirate the game.
And while people constantly complain about the negative impact of Valve’s monopoly, it seems any challenge to that is met with derision, but that’s a topic I already covered.
It’s worth mentioning that the vast majority of Denuvo implementations are cracked within the first few days or weeks of release. The only major exceptions to this are unpopular games with small userbases like Handball 17 and Robinson: The Journey. And even though these games which use older versions of Denuvo, there’s just no impetus to pirate them. The other class of uncracked games are high-profile releases which rely on external servers to function, which includes titles like For Honor and The Crew 2. And since server architecture is expensive and difficult to maintain, it’s unlikely that these games will ever be fully pirated.
I have to wonder if Capcom will follow in the steps of Warner Bros. Interactive, who recently dropped Denuvo from Hitman 2. We’ll just have to wait and see. Earlier this month, Capcom removed the Denuvo anti-tamper tech from Resident Evil 7 after it had been pirated for some time, so it is possible the same thing will happen in a few months with RE2.