Rage 2 launched yesterday, and as with any major game release, it didn’t take long before fans got their teeth into the game’s code. Once there, they discovered that while the Steam version of the game comes with anti-piracy protection, the version available on Bethesda’s own storefront comes with nothing of the sort.
Almost as soon as the game released, players confirmed that on Steam, the game comes with Denuvo’s anti-piracy software. Some players, however, decided to buy Rage 2 via Bethesda.net, where they quickly discovered that no such protection is in place.
A screenshot of a forum post appeared last night on the Crackwatch subreddit. The post says that “there seems to be no Denuvo in the Bethesda Launcher version” of Rage 2, and that “this is the conclusion arrived at after extensive testing of the Bethesda.net version of the game, as well as through comparisons with the Steam protected version.” Unfortunately, that would appear to mean that some versions of the game are performing better than others.
The forum post says that the game’s executable file is nearly ten times larger on Steam than it is on Bethesda.net. On top of that, the initial launch time for the Bethesda version is around one second, while the same process takes around five seconds via Steam.
Related: Check out our Rage 2 review
Denuvo claims that its anti-tamper technology has no negative impact on performance, but there have been several instances over the past few years that have caused players to doubt those assertions.
It’s not clear whether the decision to not add piracy protection to the Bethesda.net version was intentional or not, but I’d be a little surprised if it is. Either way, the game was reportedly cracked by scene group Codex just one day after launch, so I’d suggest that perhaps someone, somewhere, slipped up.