After protecting Assassins Creed Origin for the previous several months, earlier this year version 4.9 of the infamous Denuvo anti-tamper system was defeated by Italian cracking group CPY.
While all cracks of the tough and continuously developing Denuvo system are welcomed by pirate consumers, this one was particularly sweet, having also defeated Ubisoft’s decision to use VMProtect technology on top. Soon after, Bulgarian cracker Voksi, who previously defeated version 4, released a video showing how things were done.
Unlike CPY, Voksi is a rather more high-profile individual. While his true identity is known only to those closest to him, he has become somewhat of a folk hero on various cracking-focused forums, engaging in conversation with fans and discussing the latest developments.
This week, Voksi announced the passing of yet another milestone, one that’s bound to disappoint the people at Denuvo. After sinking endless hours into what he openly admits is a personal grudge against the company’s technology, Voksi revealed that its latest v4.9++ protection had fallen.
Speaking with TorrentFreak, Voksi says that after tackling previous versions, a little while back he began dissecting the newer 4.7/4.8 builds (not official Denuvo versions but a numbering system used by the cracking scene).
“Man, it seemed impossible back then. The obfuscation was insane, I had no idea what to do. So, over the next two months, with little breaks from time to time, I was analyzing exactly how [Denuvo] does those hardware checks,” he notes.
“Then I tried my tricks for 4.7 on 4.8, but something wasn’t quite right. It was way more obfusticated and had some strange patterns and I couldn’t figure out why it was like that. Soon enough though in June things started to change.”
Voksi says that he tackled several games with test cracks, with variants working on older and newer CPU generations for most people. He then came up with a new theory but needed a game to test it on.
“So I downloaded Puyo Puyo Tetris. I thought ‘it’s small game, it’d be easier to analyze’, but oh no no,” he said.
“The game executable is 128MB big, of which just 5-6MB is the real game code. The rest of it is Denuvo. It’s the most bloated Denuvo I’ve ever seen.”
Nevertheless, Voksi got to work and built a crack and implemented patches (including his new code) based on the new theory. Twelve hours later there was something to celebrate, with a crack working for the vast majority (around 99%) of users. But that wouldn’t be the end of it, he promised.
True to his word, this week Voksi announced that he’d defeated the Denuvo protection on Injustice 2, something that was met with jubilation on Reddit’s /r/crackwatch sub. He informs TF that his new techniques delivered the goods once again.
“I cracked it the same way I cracked Puyo Puyo Tetris. I don’t want to get too technical, because I don’t want to give away my techniques, but I can say it’s not an easy task,” he says.
“I cracked Injustice 2 in 10 hours. The game has custom protection on top of Denuvo and some nice anti-debug features.”
What comes next for 21-year-old Voksi remains to be seen but given his determination, other games are probably being worked on right how. He says that several other titles use 4.9 or 4.9++ protection so it’s possible he’ll have more surprises in the days and weeks to come.
“In the end, it might take some more testing and test cracks, but I’m very happy to announce that I won’t stop until we are Denuvo Cancer Free from all games,” he concludes.