It is no secret for a while now that the PC version of Resident Evil Village, while getting rave reviews, has glaring performance issues. Even before the expert analysis of multiple professionals revealed the exact cause, a lot have speculated correctly that these problems can be attributed to the invasive DRMs associated with the game. DRMs, as in there are more than one, and in the case of Resident Evil Village on PC there are two: the ever-controversial Denuvo Anti-Tamper and Capcom’s own proprietary DRM.
A closer look at the game reveals that both of these DRMs contribute to a very significant slowdown to the game’s performance on PC. While not egregious at first, players will notice severe drops in frame rates during certain sections of the game, particularly in the Castle Dimitrescu section and when you fight against zombies. The drops are incredibly low as well, as the frame rate can stutter to as low as 15 frames per second, something that is not acceptable to anyone playing on PC. What’s more interesting is that these results were tested by performance experts Digital Foundry, who tested the game on an i9 10900K + RTX 2070S combo, meaning that it is a very powerful and modern system that should have no problems running the game whatsoever.
Piracy comes to save the day
After some more testing with the recently released cracked version of the game, Digital Foundry released their findings, with the main conclusion being, the pirated version runs smoother and overall better than the DRM-protected one. One of the most telling shots happen early on in the video above, where both setups produce different results: the uncracked version would dip well into 31 frames per second with a stutter of 130ms, while the cracked one would run completely smooth, keeping its fps above 100.
As is the usual case with these kinds of heavy-handed DRM applications to big AAA releases, the paying customers are the ones to end up suffering while pirates, who did not only get to play the game for free, also got the technically superior experience. In response to the issues and the possible negative outburst from the community, especially those who paid for the game on PC, Capcom has released a statement via Eurogamer stating that “The team are working on a patch to address PC performance issues, it should be available soon – we’ll have more details shortly.”