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Denuvo delenda est

lukaselflukaself Posts: 14Registered Users
edited May 22 in Total War General Chat
In 2019, why would anyone still use Denuvo? (Crosspost from steam)

Your new game isn't even out yet and has already been the target of several customer backlash due to a lack of transparency. Why not put all the chances on your side for once by showing you care more about your customers than you care about pirates? Products like Devil May Cry 5, Sekiro sold more than 2 million units on the first week WITHOUT Denuvo. I completely agree that some form of protection is needed to counteract your garden variety of copy/paste level of piracy but Steam is already taking care of that: You don't NEED several layers of DRM, Piracy has never been proven to hurt sales. On the other hand, anti-consumer decisions sure as hell do.

You know how many of the games released in 2018 used Denuvo on Steam? 0.6%. How many of the 100 best sellers on steam used it? ...15... and there are only two in the top 10.
If Denuvo worked, wouldn't everyone use it? If it demonstrated any beneficial effect, heck, I'd be using it myself since they have affordable per-unit payment plans for small developers.

Denuvo and DRM wars in general is a waste of customer goodwill as well as good development money and companies with decades of experience in the PC market understand it very well, companies like CdProjekt, Valve or Activision that have been there for more than 20 or 30 years in some cases. On the other hand, the worst abusers of Denuvo: Sega, Squeenix, WB and Bamco are relatively new in this sector and boy, do they show it! Even Bethesda removed it first day from Rage 2 - that's not something they'd do if they were happy about it. So far this year it has been removed from more games than it has been added to. Did you know that among all the reasons of dismissing a CEO, almost a quarter was because they were refusing to accept reality?[www.prweb.com] Yeah I know, that made me think very hard about this whole "They must have reasons of using it" line.

Even as a publisher, I wouldn't want to have anything to do with a company of paid professionals with several lost lawsuits under their belt that can't protect my game from a few hackers doing this for the challenge with no budget on their own free time. Come on... I have few concerns about performance, it's just a waste of resources.


(And remove it from your older games while you're at it. Stuff like Total Warhammer 1... What the hell? This thing has been pirated to hell and back already years ago.Why should your customers -me included- be the ones to pay for it?)

The easiest way to stop piracy is not by putting antipiracy technology to work. It's by giving those people a service that's better than what they're receiving from the pirates. Gabe Newell
Post edited by lukaself on

Comments

  • Warlord_Lu_BuWarlord_Lu_Bu Posts: 1,994Registered Users
    Wut? absolutely not... please never use that garbage called Denuvo, the outrageous pile of garbage that is nothing but a scam, filled with crooks and thieves.
    "I am the punishment of Tengri, if you had not sinned, he would not have sent me against you." - Chenghis Khan Temujin
  • BerstichBerstich Posts: 180Registered Users
    Denuvo hardly effects most games even with the fabricated 'evidence' .

    I'm more disappointed that they still think it stops anyone. People who are not willing to pay for your game WILL NOT decide to pay for it because of denuvo. They just wait a week while playing something else they stole.
    After the week denuvo gets cracked and they play the game with no restrictions.

    The only people effected by denuvo are your PAYING CUSTOMERS.

    How do companies not know this yet.
  • iceniiicenii Senior Member The PhilippinesPosts: 1,366Registered Users
    @lukaself Shoplifting has never been proven too hurt sales by your own reasoning :D
    I cannot force you to believe the truth but i can allow you to believe a lie. Quote by me " Icenii ".
  • lukaselflukaself Posts: 14Registered Users
    edited May 20
    icenii said:

    @lukaself Shoplifting has never been proven too hurt sales by your own reasoning :D

    Disclaimer: I absolutely do not condone piracy. The purpose of the following discussion is only to show the waste that represents additional layers of DRM over the already existing one. (Also, don't feel cute and call me a pirate. Although I recently stopped, I have bought everything CA has released for the past two decades.)

    I see that analogy quite often. However, shoplifting can't be compared to piracy. In the former, when a product is stolen, a physical entity is lost that can't be sold to someone else which causes a loss in revenue. In the latter no product is lost, the only case of figure where a pirated copy can be considered a lost sale is when the pirate had the intention to buy that copy, decided to pirate instead and to never ever buy it afterwards. Well funded studies have shown that this case of figure is rare enough that the additional visibility and word of mouth counters it and in some cases, has a positive effect. Contrary to movies and music that have been shown to be hurt by piracy, video games benefit from this effect due to their unique communautary nature. This is why constantly escalating the fight against piracy is seen by eminent figures of this industry as a waste of resources with no return on investment. Valve for instance believes that a basic DRM is enough while companies like CdProjekt take it a step further by believing earning respect and goodwill through a high quality, polished product is a way better way to incite a purchase than any DRM. Additionally, Activision is one of the greediest companies out there... If Denuvo even had the slightest positive effect on sales, they would have been using it day one and yet they never have, most likely never will.

    https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2515581
    http://static.arstechnica.net/2011/10/11/mksc.1110.0668-1.pdf
    https://cdn.netzpolitik.org/wp-upload/2017/09/displacement_study.pdf

    The only obvious number we have at our disposal is that the top selling videogames are also the most pirated, shocking I know... I have found absolutely no study showing that a pirated game is a lost sale or that piracy hurts game sales, none whatsoever. Removing DRM, on the contrary, as reportedly shown in the links provided, improved sales consistently. Again, Not condoning piracy in any way or form, I don't even mind the actual DRM, I believe it's a developer's right to protect their intellectual work but leaning so much on Denuvo's online activation component is a major hindrance to long term retention. One of the big historical draws of PC gaming. ( Component which I experienced the unpleasantness first hand)

    You would think that the publishers, holders of the most comprehensive video game sales' statistics out there would have published their own conclusions and proofs if such proof existed in the first place. And yet they still repeat over and over that they need to protect their sales without ever showing us why with facts. Again that's because shareholders are uneducated concerning the video game's market and are still upholding dated sales models that do not transfer from the movies' industry where piracy does hurt sales.

    Another number from my opening post to keep in mind to get some perspective is that Denuvo has been used in only 0.6% of the games published on Steam in 2018. Denuvo is absolutely not as widely used as so many people believe it to be, those game are the exception. If the industry actually believed it was an efficient means of protecting their sales, everyone would be using it. Again: In 2019 so far, Denuvo has even been removed from more games than it has been used.

    If a publisher still wants to use a protection system that has clearly proven its inefficiency, fine. But If they want their customers to shoulder the cost instead of using that money to make a better game, it's their job to convince the skeptics.
    The easiest way to stop piracy is not by putting antipiracy technology to work. It's by giving those people a service that's better than what they're receiving from the pirates. Gabe Newell
  • takilung31takilung31 Posts: 1,318Registered Users
    edited May 20
    This topic has been done to death since launch, warhammer etc

    SEGA is the one putting Denuvo mind you, not CA

  • iceniiicenii Senior Member The PhilippinesPosts: 1,366Registered Users
    @lukaself it's ok i realize that from reading your whole post 👍
    I cannot force you to believe the truth but i can allow you to believe a lie. Quote by me " Icenii ".
  • RewanRewan Senior Member Posts: 1,347Registered Users
    Technically Denuvo is a shield for the product. AFAIK it's not meant to stop piracy at all, it's mostly meant to slow the process of ripping and stuff at least for the first two/three months of exploitation which are the most crucial for selling a game.

    Eventually when it's cracked there's no point in keeping it (because it does have consequences on the framerate and stuff) hence why some companies remove it. (And they all should eventually, if old titles still are under Denuvo protection then it brings some questions to mind)
  • dge1dge1 Moderator Arkansas, USAPosts: 18,640Registered Users, Moderators, Knights
    Business practice discussion. Moved to Chat.
    "The two most common things in the universe are Hydrogen and Stupidity." - Harlan Ellison
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    "Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” - George Carlin
  • lukaselflukaself Posts: 14Registered Users
    edited May 20
    Rewan said:

    Technically Denuvo is a shield for the product. AFAIK it's not meant to stop piracy at all, it's mostly meant to slow the process of ripping and stuff at least for the first two/three months of exploitation which are the most crucial for selling a game.

    That would be a nice selling point and one I could completely get behind if it worked that way. As I explained and proved by backing up my little annoying exposé with several million dollar-level studies: DRM and Denuvo has never been shown to cause more sales by preventing or delaying piracy, on the other hand it has absolutely been proven to cause less sales for several observable reasons already mentioned.

    I don't know how many game companies I have to show you until you understand there has to be a better way. I haven't bought a Ubisoft or EA game for decades and I have stopped buying CA games and DLC after TW Tomb Kings DLC, when CA made their stance on DRM clear: they have no plans of removing any of it, even when it has spent its usefulness... for F's sake, that's the WORST stance you could take! Leaving it when it doesn't have a purpose anymore? That's the very definition of an anti-consumer practice. It seems it's not the publisher's forcing them to keep it as SEGA themselves are known to remove outdated or buggy implementations of Denuvo in their own games, even sometimes simply due to popular demand like with the Yakuza series where it caused an observable influx of sales.

    Pirates never have to deal with DRM. Putting several layers of "protection" goes too far, only annoys -sometimes even hurt- your customers and damages your brand perception for using hostile practices
    icenii said:

    @lukaself it's ok i realize that from reading your whole post 👍

    If I could convince at least one person on the internet, then my rambling wasn't in vain. Thanks for reading it through! It's really appreciated.

    The easiest way to stop piracy is not by putting antipiracy technology to work. It's by giving those people a service that's better than what they're receiving from the pirates. Gabe Newell
  • TheokolesOfRomeTheokolesOfRome Senior Member The Highlands in me kilt.Posts: 1,484Registered Users
    Honestly I'd be concerned for their bottom line if they didn't use Denuvo.

    I was pleased to see it, tbh.



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  • lukaselflukaself Posts: 14Registered Users
    edited May 21

    Honestly I'd be concerned for their bottom line if they didn't use Denuvo.
    I was pleased to see it, tbh.

    What is even the basis of such a belief? How is keeping Denuvo years after release good for anyone in any way?

    Now with everything said, I don't want to be the stick in the mud. I know for a fact that the actual developers at CA are really awesome people and incredibly talented as well! :happyotus: I genuinely wish them all the best with the release of 3K which is shaping up to be a really unique part of the Total Wars series. I love all their games it's just a shame that the value of goodwill is often underappreciated in high places.
    Post edited by lukaself on
    The easiest way to stop piracy is not by putting antipiracy technology to work. It's by giving those people a service that's better than what they're receiving from the pirates. Gabe Newell
  • ACmonkeyACmonkey Posts: 75Registered Users
    I usually purchase all games when on sale to save some good money.

    About 75% of my games are on Steam, but lately I have been purchasing more and more on GOG precisely because of lack of DRM. It's to prove that even though I know I can find the game for free, I still want to pay for it but without DRM.

    For TW 3K since it's not on GOG and I'm very hyped about the game I preordered, but at a very low price from an official retailer, with a streamer discount on top. Was 32.75 GBP at the end.

    Can't fight against Denuvo, but for what it's worth, I have already seen the cracked version of the game ready to download... So it doesn't look as if Denuvo was very efficient.
  • lukaselflukaself Posts: 14Registered Users
    edited May 22
    ACmonkey said:

    I usually purchase all games when on sale to save some good money.

    Can't fight against Denuvo, but for what it's worth, I have already seen the cracked version of the game ready to download... So it doesn't look as if Denuvo was very efficient.

    It fits with my overview of the current situation but that's still really disheartening news... that means not only they wasted resources by using Denuvo, they'll not even benefit a single day from what they paid it for. Damn...
    Post edited by lukaself on
    The easiest way to stop piracy is not by putting antipiracy technology to work. It's by giving those people a service that's better than what they're receiving from the pirates. Gabe Newell
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