Doom Eternal is probably what most PC gamers are busy playing these days. Though it might come as no surprise to people that the game launched with the infamous Denuvo DRM that also shipped with Doom 2016. And while most people have not reported any issues with Denuvo, for some gamers it might be a dealbreaker due to alleged performance issues.
According to forum users on Reddit and ResetEra, the game shipped with a DRM free executable on the Bethesda Launcher. It’s a bit difficult to verify this however as this executable no longer exists in the install folder, most likely patched out. But if it’s the case, it’s a pretty huge blunder on Bethesda’s half to include essentially a cracked version of the game with a published install.
This probably made it very easy for pirates to provide a pirated copy of the game shortly after launch. Given Bethesda’s reputation as of late, I wouldn’t count this as entirely improbable. And it would be rather hilarious if the publisher inadvertently just gave away pirated copies of the game.
And this is by no means a new thing for Bethesda. Last year’s Rage 2 also apparently shipped with a DRM-free executable. Denuvo was officially removed from the Steam version of Rage 2 a few days later. Most likely since the pirated version was already out by then.
Crack and Tear
Denuvo was once considered pretty solid. Though in recent years it has proven increasingly easy to crack. So it would most likely only be a question of time before pirated versions of Doom Eternal would show up on PirateBay and the like.
Whether this was a deliberate act of anti-DRM rebellion, or just a mistake on Bethesda’s behalf is hard to tell. But what’s certain is that Bethesda has themselves to blame.
Whether Denuvo has any real performance impact is of course up for debate. Most reviewers and gamers have not experienced any kind of bad performance with the game. Given the game feels very optimized on PC, it seems unlikely Denuvo would affect most buyers.
In good news, we are currently busy ripping and tearing our way through Doom Eternal. Although we are thankfully not playing the pirated version, as we do not want to endorse piracy. Doom Eternal is definitely worth your money, whether you choose to crack it or not. So stay tuned for our full review of Doom Eternal very soon!
Thanks to Ars Technica for the info.