Video Gaming

Five myths about Denuvo Anti-Cheat – let’s shoot 'em up!

Addressing myths about anti-cheat

With more than 2.5 billion players worldwide, video games now move more money than cinema and music combined! With such impressive numbers, it cannot be denied that games are already a well-established cultural phenomenon. Nowadays, everyone plays a game. Including cheaters.

The Irdeto Global Gaming Survey revealed that more than half of gamers in the UK (61%) and Germany (61%) have had their multiplayer gaming experience negatively impacted by other players cheating. Out of 9,436 consumers surveyed, it was found that gamers in the UK (74%) and Germany (68%) are likely to stop playing multiplayer online games if they feel that other players are gaining an unfair advantage through cheating.

Cheating in video games has been around nearly as long as video games themselves. Denuvo Anti-Cheat provides real-time detection of multiplayer aimbots, overlays and maphacks that use drivers, hypervisors and other common cheat methods. By using security features offered by mainstream hardware in combination with game-agnostic Machine Learning, we achieve an unprecedented level of cheat detection effectiveness. Obviously, because of these efforts, creating rumors and myths around any anti-cheat has also become a favorite hobby among cheaters. Since information travels in gaming communities so rapidly, a lie told a thousand times becomes the truth.

With that in mind, we felt it was important to dissipate some of the myths around Denuvo’s Anti-Cheat solution with hard cold facts.

1. Anti-cheat affects game performance and causes PC crashes

No, it doesn’t. We’ve profiled millions of gameplay hours to verify if Denuvo Anti-Cheat has any performance impact. Unlike existing anti-cheats that hook the filesystem, register for performance degrading callbacks, etc., Denuvo Anti-Cheat does none of this. We struggle to detect our performance footprint when profiling games as the impact is smaller than margin of error introduced by variables like ambient room temperature, let alone cause an effect that the average user can perceive as gameplay impact.

2. Anti-cheat is mandatory even if you are playing in singleplayer mode

Game developers have the option to skip anti-cheat installation for gamers looking to experience singleplayer or non-competitive multiplayer content. Even if Denuvo Anti-Cheat is installed, it only runs when game developers want it.

3. You don’t need kernel access to identify cheats, it’s too intrusive

Denuvo Anti-cheat uses a kernel-mode driver for the same reason your anti-virus does; malware and cheaters use this level of access to bypass detection. Trying to catch cheaters without kernel-mode access is like bringing a knife to a gunfight. Your GPU, 3rd party mouse and keyboard software, and even Steam use services with kernel-mode access. All the above examples have intrusive kernel-mode access and run all the time – Denuvo Anti-Cheat only runs when your game is running. Denuvo’s driver must survive endless attacks from cheaters – why would hackers looking to compromise your machine target Denuvo’s hardened driver that only runs while gaming when instead they can go after non-security software that starts with your OS?

4. Anti-cheats can block debuggers and prevent instrumentation

Denuvo Anti-Cheat is non-intrusive and enables developers to work seamlessly with protected builds as it does not block debuggers or prevent instrumentation. The most effective way to stop cheaters from playing is to deny them access to your game’s online services. Cheat detections are reported to an easy-to-use web application, enabling your security engineers or gameplay services to act in real-time.

5. Anti-cheat requires technical expertise and could be difficult to manage

Unlike so many others, Denuvo operates on the binary, not the source code. Our Anti-Cheat solution integrates directly into the product’s continuous integration pipeline. In addition, Denuvo does not require APIs or SDKs, which means fewer tools for build engineers to manage and fewer tools for developers to install. Once integrated, Denuvo Anti-Cheat is self-updating and provides easy-to-review cheat evidence via web application, accessible from your desktop or mobile device.

Trust is a critical part of a multiplayer game community – trust in the publisher, trust in the system and trust in other players. Cheaters are a negative aspect of the game, in which a minority benefits more than the disadvantaged majority. Our team is passionate about protecting games and we are looking forward to assisting game developers in their fight against selfish cheaters for many years to come.

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