When anti-piracy software Denuvo is removed from a game days before its release date, it's usually because pirates cracked an early access version. Not so with Payday 3. It's due to release on September 21st, but its developers have decided to handle things themselves.
"Denuvo is no longer in Paday 3," they announced yesterday, ahead of its release on September 21st.
"We want to inform you that Denuvo is no longer in Payday 3," says the short announcement on Steam. "We look forward to seeing you in New York City! Happy heisting!"
A developer announcing the removal of Denuvo days before launch is also the opposite direction from other recent games. Street Fighter 6's Steam page was updated with mention of the inclusion of Denuvo just three days before release, and Soulslike Lies Of P, due for release in two days, declared the inclusion of Denuvo only yesterday.
Denuvo, if you're unfamiliar, is digital rights management (DRM) software bundled with game executables and designed to stop people being able to pirate games, particularly in the weeks immediately after launch. Like most forms of DRM, Denuvo poses a threat to the long-term availability of games by rendering them more fragile in the face of inevitabilities like hardware changes, software updates, and company closures. Denuvo has also been found in some instances to have a negative impact on performance, such as in benchmarks by (RPS cousins) Digital Foundry of Capcom games Resident Evil Village and Devil May Cry 5.
Some of those reports of performance issues are disputed, and Denuvo themselves have repeatedly denied their software has any negative impact. Earlier this year, Denuvo parent company Irdeto declared they would provide two copies of games to "trusted media outlets" - one copy including Denuvo, one without - so as to prove that performance between the two was "identical".
Whatever the reality, many players choose to avoid games which come bundled with Denuvo. Now the list of games to avoid no longer includes Payday 3.