If you're a game development studio all you need to do to garner immediate backlash is walk up to a microphone and say... "Denuvo". The anti-piracy and anti-cheat technology has long been associated with performance and privacy concerns. The former being the idea that any game with Denuvo Anti-Cheat
will run noticeably slower and offer up complete access to your system via Kernel integration.
As part of its most recent update to the game, id Software introduced Denuvo Anti-Cheat into DOOM Eternal. With the game's BATTLEMODE in a way it made sense for the studio to look into anti-cheat measures. Naturally, the response was immediate and vocal across the various hot-spots and content creators that continuously feed their audiences anti-Bethesda sentiment. But with Denuvo's troubled and spotty history there was some genuine cause for concern.
And now it seems, Denuvo Anti-Cheat will be removed from DOOM Eternal, with id Software's Marty Stratton taking to Reddit
offering a calm and measured response as to why it was included and that its removal will see the studio look at alternative measures for anti-cheat.
First up there's the reasoning.
Our team’s original decision to include Denuvo Anti-Cheat in Update 1 was based on a number of factors:
- Protect BATTLEMODE players from cheaters now, but also establish consistent anti-cheat systems and processes as we look ahead to more competitive initiatives on our BATTLEMODE roadmap
- Establish cheat protection in the campaign now in preparation for the future launch of Invasion – which is a blend of campaign and multiplayer
- Kernel-level integrations are typically the most effective in preventing cheating
- Denuvo’s integration met our standards for security and privacy
- Players were disappointed on DOOM (2016) with our delay in adding anti-cheat technology to protect that game’s multiplayer
And then the solution.
Despite our best intentions, feedback from players has made it clear that we must re-evaluate our approach to anti-cheat integration. With that, we will be removing the anti-cheat technology from the game in our next PC update. As we examine any future of anti-cheat in DOOM Eternal, at a minimum we must consider giving campaign-only players the ability to play without anti-cheat software installed, as well as ensure the overall timing of any anti-cheat integration better aligns with player expectations around clear initiatives – like ranked or competitive play – where demand for anti-cheat is far greater.
In a way Marty's response is as efficient as the Slayer himself - quelling backlash and an irate fan-base with the power of a Super Shotgun. He also notes that the decision to put Denuvo in the game didn't come from Bethesda and that the technology is sound - with recent DOOM Eternal performance issues relating to changes to how the game handles memory.
The big takeaway though is that in addition to story-based DLC expansions id is looking at ramping up the competitive side of DOOM Eternal's BATTLEMODE - where we could be getting a ranking system, seasons, and potentially some Slayer and demon-filled esports.