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Denuvo Anti-Tamper and game modding

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ner0
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Denuvo Anti-Tamper and game modding

Post by ner0 » Wed Dec 10, 2014 9:54 pm

I'm pretty sure you have already heard about this new anti-tamper, anti-debugging system that came out a few months ago, called Denuvo Anti-Tamper. Currently these games are known to employ this technology: FIFA 2015, Lords of the Fallen and Dragon Age: Inquisition.

The official webpage for this anti-tamper mechanism says that:
Denuvo Anti-Tamper technology prevents the debugging, reverse engineering and changing of executable files to strengthen the security of games. It is not a DRM solution, but rather, Denuvo Anti-tamper protects DRM solutions, such as Origin Online Access or the Steam license management system, from being circumvented.
It is said that the people behind it are the same that were behind another anti-tampering (read anti-piracy) technology called StarForce that came out some 10 years ago and holds a record of 424 days without being cracked. Now, so far it seems that this Denuvo technology is pretty strong as it has prevented any of the games protected with it from being cracked/pirated; good for them. Most probably it won't hold forever but that's beside the point of this topic, I'm not suggesting anything of the sort.

In game modding, executable files rarely need to be debugged, and even rarely patched, for a mod to work. But there are a few instances where understanding key pieces of an executable's inner-workings are the "key" to understanding how some game files are handled, encrypted and/or decrypted, by the game engine. I'm not sure if this problem currently exists with DRM solution or not.

The Wikipedia page for this technology, although unofficial and possibly unreliable, says the following:
[it is] suggested that Denuvo Anti-Tamper employs a "64-bit encryption machine" that requires cryptographic keys unique to the specific hardware of the installed system.
I assume that the success of this technology may tell us that more games will use it in the future and I'm curious to know what the experts in this forum think of it, if they have a more technical insight about this new technology, what makes it so effective, and how it may affect or hinder attempts at game modding; particularly when so many companies don't support modding at all.

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Re: Denuvo Anti-Tamper and game modding

Post by cra0 » Sun Dec 21, 2014 11:46 pm

Isn't this the thing that totally burns out ones SSD because of the sheer amount of read/write cycles.

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Re: Denuvo Anti-Tamper and game modding

Post by ner0 » Mon Dec 22, 2014 1:11 am

Yes, it is rumored to be the case but I'm not sure if it is correct.
One example I saw somewhere were these read/write statistics:

Image

According to the person that made the test, on the left is the disk state before playing a game that is protected by Denuvo and on the right the stats after ~40 mins of game-play. If the test is accurate, this really represents a massive disk usage.

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Re: Denuvo Anti-Tamper and game modding

Post by mirh » Sun Jan 11, 2015 2:50 am

Image

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Re: Denuvo Anti-Tamper and game modding

Post by ner0 » Sun Jan 11, 2015 3:06 am

It probably IS bullshit.
Not sure what to make of the comment from that link though:
Your SSD has to move 2GB each second to even reach those numbers. So that's impossible.
That's some odd math going on there... 800MB per minute would be more like it.

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