It was news that surprised exactly nobody but is also unwelcome in many ways anyway. Back 4 Blood has quietly added Denuvo Anti-Tamper code to the game ahead of next week’s launch.
Denuvo is one of the most unpopular and indeed controversial pieces of software out there today, and while its main mission is to prevent pirates having a field day with a new release, we have all seen enough issues with legitimate copies of games being hampered by its inclusion historically.
It has previously been “proven” by tech websites that Denuvo has a negative effect on legit gaming, being blamed for stuttering in titles such as Resident Evil Village and many other incidents over the years.
Publishers continue to employ it, however, desperate to prevent 0-day pirated releases of the game in the hope that people buy it in the initial rush after release, thus protecting, to some degree, profits and margins.
Some publishers however have actively made a play for popularity by removing Denuvo Anti-Tamper before launch. Humankind binned it saying the current integration was not good enough for prime-time release.
The inclusion also suggests that Back 4 Blood will need to be connected to the internet in order to verify itself, something which has angered gamers already.
Once again though it seems that the decision has been made to protect the asset at the potential expense of players who have pre-ordered the game.
Back 4 Blood is already set to appear on Game Pass from Day 1 so in that regard players can’t exactly vote with their wallets and get refunds. What the inclusion of Denuvo should mean however is we should see a lack of a torrented version within hours of release, We just have to hope that gameplay doesn’t suffer from its inclusion, but we don’t think anybody is holding their breath.
Every stutter or flaw will be blamed on Denuvo’s inclusion with 100s of Reddit comments already ranging from annoying to out and out ranting.
Publishers can’t really win as they can see huge amounts wiped off sales by a badly timed pirated copy but Denuvo’s name is so tainted as DRM these days they know they are in for a rough ride the second it gets added into this equation.
We are sure we will end up following this story up on release day when all become apparent. Watch this space.