Content Type: Gaming News
Date: October 27, 2022
In a comedy of errors, Warner Bros. Interactive added the Denuvo anti-cheat software to Gotham Knights… Less than a day after removing it.
The original removal of Denuvo already drew the notice of industry-savvy folks when it happened yesterday, less than a week after the game’s launch. Though the software is often removed from titles after a few months, as was the case for Total War: Warhammer 2 and Jedi: Fallen Order, this is usually done when the expensive software becomes not worth maintaining anymore after a game’s post-launch popularity has waned. On other occasions, the software has been removed due to privacy or performance concerns (the latter of which we originally speculated as being the reason for the removal).
However, it seems that none of those were the reason for the removal; rather, the cause seems to be a simple mistake. While this might, on the surface, seem less dramatic, the truth is far more comical. This is because Denuvo is also quite effective anti-piracy software, which has been known to protect games from pirates for months. However, that relies on consistent, unbroken coverage… Meaning that the temporary removal of the software rendered it completely vulnerable to piracy. Needless to say, cracks of Gotham Knights were uploaded to pirating sites within half-an-hour.
So, with the primary purpose of Denuvo now rendered moot, Warner Bros. Interactive still opted to add it back in. This has drawn immediate criticism on Reddit since the only thing Denuvo serves to do now is to add a clunky, possibly-performance-hindering piece of privacy-invading anti-piracy software to an already-pirated game. Meanwhile, the pirated version of the game will now be the version without Denuvo, making it a technically better game (albeit in a very minor way).
We will have to see if this snafu leads to any nasty consequences for the already-struggling Gotham Knights going forward, but either way it is an awful mistake, and one that reveals some confusion (or incompetence) on the development team for the game, who have already been dealing with nonstop complaints about optimization issues and instability.
Whatever the case, there has been no official reasoning given by Warner Bros. as to the reason for the original removal or re-addition of the software, and there likely won’t be one. That’s okay, though; it is more fun to imagine the possible reasons for this bumbling display than the actual reasoning probably is. And, who knows, maybe the software will be removed again within the day.