Trusted Reviews may earn an affiliate commission when you purchase through links on our site. Learn More

Assassin’s Creed Origins anti-piracy DRM is crushing PC gamers’ CPUs

Assassin’s Creed fans who’ve rushed out to buy the latest game in the series, Egyptian-themed Origins, have been reporting that the PC version of the game is being excessively heavy on CPU resources.

Steam users have posted in the platform’s forums that Assassin’s Creed Origins is maxing out processors causing drops in frame rate and making the game’s action stutter.

“It really doesn’t seem to matter what kind of GPU you are using. The performance issues most people here are complaining about are tied to CPU getting maxed out 100 percent at all times. This results in fps drops and stutter. As far as I know there is no work around,” bemoaned the-unhappy-machine-boy.

Ubisoft has yet to release any statement on the reported performance issues on the PC version of Origins, but the problem would appear to lie with poor implementation of anti-piracy DRM.

Origins applies two DRM tools, Denuvo and VMProtect on top of it, with the latter running code in a virtual machine environment on a user’s PC, according to game cracker Voksi.

“Basically, Ubisoft have implemented VMProtect on top of Denuvo, tanking the game’s performance by 30-40%, demanding that people have a more expensive CPU to play the game properly, only because of the DRM. It’s anti-consumer and a disgusting move,” he told TorrentFreak.

It’s worth pointing out that as a game ‘cracker’ Voksi could be branded as a facilitator of piracy and therefore have views on DRM that are a tad biased.

Denuvo is a DRM tool pirates have advanced tools to get around so the addition of VMProtect appears to be Ubisoft’s attempts to make it more difficult for Origins to be cracked and pirated.

While Ubisoft is fully within its rights to protect its game from those who’d pirate it, legitimate buyers of Origins appear to be the ones who will suffer in the meantime, unless Ubisoft pushes out a patch to bring CPU usage back under control.

Related: Assassin’s Creed Origins Guide

Have you ran into any problems with Assassin’s Creed Origins? Let us know on Twitter or Facebook. 

Unlike other sites, we thoroughly review everything we recommend, using industry standard tests to evaluate products. We’ll always tell you what we find. We may get a commission if you buy via our price links. Tell us what you think – email the Editor