Assassin’s Creed Mirage’s day one patch has implemented the controversial Denuvo DRM anti-piracy technology without warning.
For context, Denuvo DRM is a digital rights management system that was introduced in 2014. When implemented into a game, it regularly checks with servers to authenticate that you legally own what you’re playing. However, it often results in worse performance, and is incredibly harmful for game preservation. Once authentication servers go offline, the games will no longer be playable. This is why storefronts like GOG make it a point to sell games without DRM, so that they are not lost to time in the future.
As reported by VGC, players who downloaded Mirage’s day one patch were met with a new EULA-Denuvo license agreement to sign before they could continue playing. This confirms that DRM has been implemented.
While the newly implemented DRM is still harmful to video game preservation, it does not appear to have affected performance. Those who have played with the Denuvo update say that “pre-patch and psot-patch performance is exactly the same”. However, adding it after reviews went live has rubbed players the wrong way.
“I think the bigger issue here, that some people seem to be ignoring (or just not realising), is that Ubisoft are waiting for reviews to come out, then updating their game and putting in DRM,” Zalthos said in a Reddit post about the update. “Doesn’t matter that it’s Denuvo – it’s just a sneaky, shitty way of doing things when they should just be honest about it from the get-go.”
Others are less surprised. It was leaked before launch that Ubisoft would be implementing Denuvo in Assassin’s Creed Mirage, this update just confirms those initial reports. Granted, that hasn’t dissuaded many from being outraged at the news.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Denuvo added post-launch, and it’s not even the first time this year. Lies of P likewise waited until the last possible moment to add a warning on its Steam page about DRM, adding the anti-tamper tech after the early access launch.
On the flipside, Payday 3 removed Denuvo DRM after backlash, though preservation remains an issue as the game is always online, meaning you can’t play it single-player if the servers go down.
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