Rime will drop Denuvo after crackers bypass it in just five days (Updated)

Update: After confirming that Rime has indeed been cracked, publisher Grey Box said that it will follow through on its pledge to replace the current build of the game with one that does not include Denuvo. It's also working on the first "traditional" update, which it expects will be ready to go next week. 

"This patch will provide a fix for the VR initialization bug, and will also provide a fix to some specific instances of hardware-related crashes, among other updates which will be detailed at the time," community manager Tim "Dariuas" Slager wrote. "We sincerely thank players who have reported issues, and a special thanks to those who have worked with us to provide additional details, DxDiag files, and the like. We want to continue giving you the best product we possibly can." 

(A studio rep clarified that Rime does not support VR, but "something in the backend sometimes triggers VR headset interfaces to load when the game boots up," which is what the patch will address.)

Rime should update to the Denuvo-free build automatically, but Grey Box recommended double-checking, just to be sure.   

Original story:

Rime lead producer Cody Bradley said four days ago that the Denuvo anti-tampering software protecting the game from piracy would be removed once it was cracked, adding, "We expect the protection to last two weeks, maybe three at most." His timeline was seriously over-optimistic. Cracking group Skidrow released a crack for the game today, just five days after Rime's release, and also posted a scathing message blaming the software for much Rime's performance issues. 

"Baldman," who claimed credit for the crack, said that Rime makes 300,000 calls to "triggers" during its initial launch and loading of saves. By comparison, games like Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3, Nier, and Prey only make about 1000 calls each. 

"Protection now calls about 10-30 triggers every second during actual gameplay, slowing [the] game down," Baldman explained. "In previous games like Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3, Nier, [and] Prey there were only about 1-2 'triggers' called every several minutes during gameplay, so do the math. Don't forget that triggers [are] under VM and heavily obfuscated, which obviously does not improve performance." 

Baldman's allegations are unverified, and it isn't clear whether the high number of calls ovserved is intentional or a bug. But Bradley did acknowledge that the presence of Denuvo was responsible for a "small performance hit" in Rime. "At this time we do not believe it is causing the problems that are currently being reported," he said. "We might be wrong. We’re monitoring the situation."   

I've emailed Rime publisher Grey Box to ask if a timeline for officially removing Denuvo from the game has been set.   

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.