Will DRM Finally Beat Piracy? Notorious Cracking Forum Says Yes

Steven Bogos

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Jan 17, 2013
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Will DRM Finally Beat Piracy? Notorious Cracking Forum Says Yes

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Notorious Chinese cracking forum 3DM claims that in two years, it will be all but impossible to crack video game DRM.

The DRM/piracy arms race is one that has existed since the dawn of gaming, but it may be finally coming to a close, claims notorious Chinese cracking forum 3DM. Just Cause 3 [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/tag/view/just%20cause%203?os=%20just%20cause%203], released back on December 1, remains uncracked, and has pushed the group's top cracker to his breaking point. While he believes he will eventually be able to crack the game, he doesn't have much hope for the future, stating that in two years, games will be all but impossible to pirate.

"Recently, many people have asked about cracks for 'Just Cause 3', so here is a centralized answer to this question. The last stage is too difficult and Jun [the cracker] nearly gave up, but last Wednesday I encouraged him to continue," wrote 3DM forum founder 'Bird Sister'.

"I still believe that this game can be compromised. But according to current trends in the development of encryption technology, in two years time I'm afraid there will be no free games to play in the world."

The big culprit in all of this, and the tech that crackers think will eventually become impossible (or at least, unfeasible) to break, is an new form of DRM called "Denuvo" developed by Denuvo Software Solutions GmbH. It first made headlines in the cracking world by preventing Dragon Age: Inquisition [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/tag/view/dragon%20age%20inquisition?os=dragon+age+inquisition] from being cracked for a full month - quite a feat considering games are usually cracked within a week of release.

FIFA 16 was released last September with a new and improved form of Denuvo DRM, and alongside Just Cause 3, remains uncracked to this day.

While nothing is completely "uncrackable", and I'm sure Just Cause 3 will fall, if Denuvo can manage to keep games uncracked for several months following release, it will probably cause most crackers and pirates to lose interest. After all, those first months are where most sales are made.

Source: Torrent Freak [https://torrentfreak.com/no-more-pirate-games-in-two-years-group-warns-160106/]

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Therumancer

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Nov 28, 2007
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Interesting, but I'll believe it when I see it. This just seems like another step in the "arms race", the invincible technology never stays that way for long.

That said, I do have to wonder what will happen without pirates to blame, will we finally see the prices of video games fall? Or will we see another boogie man combined with claims of how they are already a great value maintain the existing $60 new price point for AAA games.

I'm not a big fan of piracy, and I doubt this will work, but it will be interesting if this turns out to show piracy as having had a symbiotic relationship with the industry as opposed to a parasitical one.

That said I remember when Sierra had "unbeatable" copy protection back in the day, eventually the pirates won.
 

thewatergamer

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Aug 4, 2012
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Isn't Denuvo infamous for hurting performance and is even an alleged cause of hard-drive damage? Oh wait I forgot, fuck the paying consumers! We need to make sure those pirates actually buy the game! Even though their is no proof that a pirated copy is a lost sale...oh wait I forgot, logic be damned, pfft, my mistake
 

laggyteabag

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What's that? After all this time, DRM will finally start doing its job? Took their damn time.
 

Wuvlycuddles

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I'm very interested to see if that would actually mark an increase in game sales, I mean it'd be pretty hilarious if they spend all that money on decent drm for it to not impact sales figures in the slightest.
 
Sep 9, 2007
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thewatergamer said:
Isn't Denuvo infamous for hurting performance and is even an alleged cause of hard-drive damage? Oh wait I forgot, fuck the paying consumers pfft, my mistake
That was the initial story from what I can tell. However a quick google search tells me the SSD damage part of the story is more-or-less untrue. I'm unsure about any performance hit, though.

Some light reading:
http://forum.bioware.com/topic/520683-denuvo-drm-protection-broke-ssd-bioware-please-answer-this/#entry17808049
https://www.reddit.com/r/pcmasterrace/comments/2mtxub/denuvo_drm_does_not_destroy_or_damage_ssds_proof/
 

TsunamiWombat

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Sep 6, 2008
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Actual Scene Hackers deny this. This particular group is a gimped for profit group, and therefore the 'scene' is snorting and rolling its eyes at this assertion.
 

truckspond

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Yeah, no. People will always want to try games to see if it runs on their system and they actually enjoy it before making the significant investment that a game requires. As such, people will always crack games. It may take a bit longer to figure out but where there is a will, there is a way.
 

WarpedLord

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Smilomaniac said:
To boost sales, all they'd have to do was add a splash screen that said "If you enjoyed this game, please consider purchasing it" and people would be more inclined to do so.
You can't possibly believe that to be true... you seriously think pirates will pay for a game as long as developers... ask nicely?!?

Thanks for the hardest laugh I'm likely to have all month.
 

votemarvel

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I always download the crack for games I've bought. I don't mind paying money for a game I am interested in, even if they occasionally turn out to be a pup, but I will be damned if I am going to run programs unnecessary to the game in order to play said game.

If DRM did ever turn out to be uncrackable, I'd just wait until they reached GoG and buy them from there (and for a cheaper price.)
 

Nooners

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WarpedLord said:
Smilomaniac said:
To boost sales, all they'd have to do was add a splash screen that said "If you enjoyed this game, please consider purchasing it" and people would be more inclined to do so.
You can't possibly believe that to be true... you seriously think pirates will pay for a game as long as developers... ask nicely?!?

Thanks for the hardest laugh I'm likely to have all month.
I think that's basically CD Projekt Red's mindset, though. Poland has one of the highest piracy rates in the world, so CDPR just said, "Well, let's just give up on DRM and ask nicely for people not to pirate."

...from what I last heard, they're doing okay for themselves.
 

WouldYouKindly

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Apr 17, 2011
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This has slightly more value since it comes from the actual crackers, but I actually kind of doubt it even still.

It's like an arms race. Maybe 6 months down the line from the uncrackable DRM, someone will develop a new tool designed exactly to crack the uncrackable.
 

FirstNameLastName

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Nov 6, 2014
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In other news, the crossbow has just been invented. That's it people, pack up your stuff and go home. The arms-race is now over, nothing will ever trump it. History ends today.

Yeah, I'll believe it if it's a year later and these game still haven't been cracked, but a few months isn't enough for pirates to start yelling "the end is nigh."
Nooners said:
WarpedLord said:
Smilomaniac said:
To boost sales, all they'd have to do was add a splash screen that said "If you enjoyed this game, please consider purchasing it" and people would be more inclined to do so.
You can't possibly believe that to be true... you seriously think pirates will pay for a game as long as developers... ask nicely?!?

Thanks for the hardest laugh I'm likely to have all month.
I think that's basically CD Projekt Red's mindset, though. Poland has one of the highest piracy rates in the world, so CDPR just said, "Well, let's just give up on DRM and ask nicely for people not to pirate."

...from what I last heard, they're doing okay for themselves.
That doesn't really have anything to do with them simply "asking nicely", and more to do with an overall consumer-friendly approach.
 

IceForce

Is this memes?
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Yeah, they said Assassin's Creed 2's always-online couldn't be cracked either.

Did you know they've built an unsinkable ship? Yep, it's called the Titanic.
 

Tanis

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Aug 30, 2010
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I call BS, so much BS.
The whole 'never gonna be cracked' has been around since the days of the 'look in booklet on page 7, line 8, word 9 and enter here'.

Either this group is a mole, or they're just kind of...sucking...at the whole cracked thing.

Plus, DRM is evil.
I've stopped playing/buying many PC games BECAUSE of the DRM.

Gonna treat me like a 'criminal', when ACTUAL 'criminals' are getting a better product because your shitty DRM is screwing with the game...
Not gonna get MY money, assholes.
 

Callate

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Dec 5, 2008
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Of course, crackability isn't the only question regarding DRM. If a system is nigh-uncrackable (I don't entirely buy the notion that truly uncrackable software is feasible), but significantly onerous to the legitimate end user, that's something of a pyrrhic victory.
 

Steven Bogos

The Taco Man
Jan 17, 2013
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FirstNameLastName said:
In other news, the crossbow has just been invented. That's it people, pack up your stuff and go home. The arms-race is now over, nothing will ever trump it. History ends today.
I know this is a joke, but the invention of the crossbow basically completely changed the way wars were fought. All of a sudden people with very minimal training could be effective in battle against even hardened veterans. Nothing, not even the gun, changed war as much as crossbows did.