Although Oculus hoped to prevent piracy of its Rift virtual reality games, a new update released by the company actually just made piracy a lot easier.
It all started when gamers began using a mod called Revive, which lets players run exclusive Oculus Rift games on the HTC Vive. Oculus wasn't too happy about that and called Revive a "hack," with news that the company planned on doing something to prevent it from working.
That action was patch v1.4, which checks to determine whether or not the headset attached is actually a Rift. The patch did what it intended, but in the process opened up the Rift to an entirely different way to play pirated games.
"The original version of Revive simply took functions from the Oculus Runtime and translated them to OpenVR calls ..." Revive creator Libre VR said to Motherboard. "The new version of Revive now uses the same injection technique to bypass Oculus' ownership check altogether. By disabling the ownership check the game can no longer determine whether you legitimately own the game."
This means that the latest Oculus patch makes it possible to play pirated versions of any of its games, which is a far greater problem than allowing its games to get played on other systems, which was the original issue the patch fixed.
Although Libre states that it doesn't support piracy, it does feel the need to point out this new massive security hole with Oculus' system. However, that won't stop some gamers from attempting to play pirated games on the VR once word gets out.
Originally, Oculus didn't seem to mind if users created mods for Rift or even if they wanted to play games on other headsets.
"If customers buy a game from us, I don't care if they mod it to run on whatever they want," Oculus chief Palmer Luckey wrote on Reddit earlier this year. "As I have said a million times (and counter to the current circlejerk), our goal is not to profit by locking people to only our hardware."
It seems that the company changed its mind, and it's also likely that it's working on another security update to fix this latest loophole. Still, it's just one more issue Oculus faces with the release of its headset, especially considering that some players who preordered the Rift are probably still waiting on their units to ship.