Modders Find Ways Around Resident Evil 2 Demo's Time Limit

AlphaAtlas

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Capcom released a Resident Evil 2 demo last week, but it comes with a major caveat: players are limited to 30 minutes of gameplay. Personally, I despise time limits like that, as it compels me to rush through gameplay I'd otherwise take time to enjoy, and I suspect I'm not the only one with that opinion. But RockPaperShotgun spotted some enterprising players that figured out how to get around that time limit with Gibbed's Steam Achievement Manager.

Check out the video of the mod here.

I can't personally attest to the effectiveness or safety of this technique, but I've been using Gibbed's save editors in games for years. They were particularly useful in the Mass Effect series, and I would bet that his Steam Achievement Editor is solid too.
 
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this isn't a mod. It's a hack that circumvents a rather stupid but still existing, software control to allow this demo to be a demo in lieu of paying for the game (or as a preview of the game). I'd rank this in the same level as password/serial generators in terms of what it allows you to do. Probably harmless in this case, since the developers didn't think it mattered enough to try harder to lock the demo down, but still. I'd put this on the greyer side of things that you might want to avoid on any steam account you care about.

if you have a problem with demo's not being full games ...dont play demos. Not sure why the author thinks they're entitled to have more than what the developer is limiting their free sample to. That entire statement in the post is just a wrong way to view the world. Unless you want to end free samples.
 
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There's no actual reason to not allow people the full amount of time to play through the demo, or replay it if they wish.

This is just a workaround for a stupid developer choice.

Maybe they feel that without the time limit, a number of potential customers will be happy to play just this demo and not purchase the actual game. Granted, it would probably be trivial to block the demo once the real game comes out, but perhaps not. I dont know how complete the demo is or if there are offline aspects to it.

These kinds of games are basically "complete" even if you only have one map to play on. So if they didn't have an easy way to block the demo without blocking the actual game come time to play ...this weak limitation would be the only thing stopping people from playing the game for free. Not a smart move on the developer, but it's pretty obvious who is doing something wrong here. It's not the developer.
 

MavericK

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Maybe they feel that without the time limit, a number of potential customers will be happy to play just this demo and not purchase the actual game. Granted, it would probably be trivial to block the demo once the real game comes out, but perhaps not. I dont know how complete the demo is or if there are offline aspects to it.

These kinds of games are basically "complete" even if you only have one map to play on. So if they didn't have an easy way to block the demo without blocking the actual game come time to play ...this weak limitation would be the only thing stopping people from playing the game for free. Not a smart move on the developer, but it's pretty obvious who is doing something wrong here. It's not the developer.

The only real reason to time-limit a demo is if it's a larger chunk of the game that could contain a lot more unique gameplay if it wasn't time-limited. In this case, the demo actually ends at a certain point, so that reasoning doesn't even hold up here. There is only so much you can do in the demo anyway, not much more than the time limit, but people might want to replay that same bit more than once.

If they are worried about people being satisfied with the demo to the point where they wouldn't buy the game, then that doesn't say much for the quality of the full release, does it?
 

KazeoHin

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The time limit is simple: it's a psychological technique to make you want more. You only get 30 minutes and you end up REALLY wanting to buy the full game because you felt you missed so much and you have unfinished business etc.

Its not really a code or gameplay thing...
 
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The only real reason to time-limit a demo is if it's a larger chunk of the game that could contain a lot more unique gameplay if it wasn't time-limited. In this case, the demo actually ends at a certain point, so that reasoning doesn't even hold up here. There is only so much you can do in the demo anyway, not much more than the time limit, but people might want to replay that same bit more than once.

If they are worried about people being satisfied with the demo to the point where they wouldn't buy the game, then that doesn't say much for the quality of the full release, does it?

Would really depend on if you can have a sufficiently fun time within the confines of the demo (without time limits). Since there's so much demand to remove it, I would think that there is a strong case to suggest that you could.

Regardless though, this is circumventing a protection mechanism that the developers purposely put in place to limit the demo to minimize it's value. This is no different than old time shareware circumvention techniques like changing your computer's clock to trick time limited trials. It's easy and doesn't require much effort...but that doesn't make it any less than the people who make crack software.
 

Dr. Righteous

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And people wonder why demo's don't exist anymore... Immediately exploited or used to make/find them.

That is not it at all. Games are marketed and promoted like movies. You don't find out the movie is trash until you are walking out of the theater and feel you wasted the ticket price.
You pay for a game, and play it for 20 minutes; find the game controls leave much to be desired, the story telling is flat and uninteresting plus no innovative graphics or dynamics that is compelling. You loose interest in it pretty quick.
 

MavericK

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Would really depend on if you can have a sufficiently fun time within the confines of the demo (without time limits). Since there's so much demand to remove it, I would think that there is a strong case to suggest that you could.

I think it's more just trying to bypass the "one shot" nature of it, moreso than the time limit. Frankly, I can't think of any prior example where a demo has been time-limited to where you are only able to play it ONCE, period. The demo sold me on the game, but I do feel this was a poor choice on the developer's side.

Regardless though, this is circumventing a protection mechanism that the developers purposely put in place to limit the demo to minimize it's value. This is no different than old time shareware circumvention techniques like changing your computer's clock to trick time limited trials. It's easy and doesn't require much effort...but that doesn't make it any less than the people who make crack software.

Sure, okay, though you're not going to see me shedding many tears for a corporation trying to limit access to an already-limited demo.
 
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That is not it at all. Games are marketed and promoted like movies. You don't find out the movie is trash until you are walking out of the theater and feel you wasted the ticket price.
You pay for a game, and play it for 20 minutes; find the game controls leave much to be desired, the story telling is flat and uninteresting plus no innovative graphics or dynamics that is compelling. You loose interest in it pretty quick.

Completely agree. Although, multiple games have stated in the last 5+ years that demo's have led to testing and creation of exploits that were used immediately upon main game release. But overall money and time to make the demo plus the chances of the demo being terrible curbing sales is a major player in demo extinction.
 

necrosis

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There's no actual reason to not allow people the full amount of time to play through the demo, or replay it if they wish.

This is just a workaround for a stupid developer choice.
This. Especially considering the demo hard ends at a specific point. Time limit or no.
 

MavericK

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And the original cd-rom demo disc had a 30 minute limit. They're keeping this remake true to form. Not sure what the big deal is.

I assume you could replay that demo as many times as you wanted, though?
 

Captindecisive

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My buddy found a time limit removal tool within the first few hours of launch. Can't attest to it's safety, but it worked to remove the time limit completely.
 

BloodyIron

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Actually, I've used demos in legit ways to determine if the game is for me or not.

Demos are awesome, and it's not a lot of work to limit them to a small subset of game content. Be it a single level, or whatever. There's a lot of developers that undervalue demos, or, like in this case, use poor execution.

Exploitation of this method is the developer's fault. This is an avoidable scenario, if they didn't suck at programing and packaging.

I've bought many games after playing awesome demos. And I've overlooked far more games, just because they had no demo.

And people wonder why demo's don't exist anymore... Immediately exploited or used to make/find them.
 

SomeoneElse

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Actually, I've used demos in legit ways to determine if the game is for me or not.

Demos are awesome, and it's not a lot of work to limit them to a small subset of game content. Be it a single level, or whatever. There's a lot of developers that undervalue demos, or, like in this case, use poor execution.

Exploitation of this method is the developer's fault. This is an avoidable scenario, if they didn't suck at programing and packaging.

I've bought many games after playing awesome demos. And I've overlooked far more games, just because they had no demo.
I miss demos because of this reason. I get to determine if i will like it enough to buy the full version. Arguments about exploits and hacks is weak because for the most part the demo came right before the full release or sometimes at the same time of release.
I played a ton of demos back in the day and alot of them sent me over the edge either way. The environment today is they want to make a ton of money even if its a disappointing game.
 

ManofGod

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Actually, I've used demos in legit ways to determine if the game is for me or not.

Demos are awesome, and it's not a lot of work to limit them to a small subset of game content. Be it a single level, or whatever. There's a lot of developers that undervalue demos, or, like in this case, use poor execution.

Exploitation of this method is the developer's fault. This is an avoidable scenario, if they didn't suck at programing and packaging.

I've bought many games after playing awesome demos. And I've overlooked far more games, just because they had no demo.

Oh, I see, it is the developers fault that are people are douche bags. :rolleyes: Sounds to me like that is some serious justification going on. (Not directed at you but that whole attitude itself.) Oh well, people will steal if they can.
 

ManofGod

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I miss demos because of this reason. I get to determine if i will like it enough to buy the full version. Arguments about exploits and hacks is weak because for the most part the demo came right before the full release or sometimes at the same time of release.
I played a ton of demos back in the day and alot of them sent me over the edge either way. The environment today is they want to make a ton of money even if its a disappointing game.

I bought Star Trek : Bridge Commander and Rise of the Tomb Raider specifically because I got hooked on the demos and wanted more.
 

Kinsaras

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Who plays a demo more than once? I immediately deleted and now waiting for the full game.
 

primetime

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why is everyone hating on the 30 minute limit? you are lucky you get a demo at all these days.
put it to you this way...because i was able to play it for the entire level and take my time (almost 2 hrs) im going to purchase this game...the devs are lucky people found a way past the stupid time limit
 
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Spun Ducky

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Why do I get the feeling they might do a steam ban wave with anyone having game time logged over a certain threshold.
 

tetris42

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And people wonder why demo's don't exist anymore... Immediately exploited or used to make/find them.
No it's not. It's because demos take more work and research showed releasing a game demo on average led to less sales. Demos only help if your game is exceptional. When people can try it for themselves and see it's only so-so, less people buy it than if they couldn't try it themselves.
 

MavericK

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Why do I get the feeling they might do a steam ban wave with anyone having game time logged over a certain threshold.

And make their already poor decisions worse? I doubt it.

Then again, AAA game developers these days sure do love doubling down on their bullshit, so who knows.

FWIW Capcom has been pretty decent in the PC space, lately.
 

NeoNemesis

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Played it. Loved it. Bought it.

Not a fucking hard concept developers. Release a quality demo that I can try and I'll give you my money if the product is good.
 

homernoy

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This is why we can't have nice things. I don't blame this guy in the least, but if this kind of thing keeps happening we can kiss PC demo's goodbye.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Reminds me of something I did in the 90's.

I'm trying to remember the details but it went something like this.

I owned the full original Lemmings game.

I also had a copy of the Lemmings 2 demo.

I noticed that the file structure of the games were very similar, and the executable had the same name, so on a whim, I copied the .exe from my full version of Lemmings overwriting the exe of the Lemmings 2 demo.

Voila, full version of Lemmings 2 :p

Have a nice DOS.
 

Nolan7689

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put it to you this way...because i was able to play it for the entire level and take my time (almost 2 hrs) im going to purchase this game...the devs are lucky people found a way past the stupid time limit

So you weren’t going to buy this game because you weren’t sure about it due to the “short” time limit?

Sounds more like you’re the one that’s lucky the time limit was broken, not the devs.
 

Soulmetzger

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I haven't tried it myself but with steams return policy you get a 2 hour demo with any game on their store.
 

Krenum

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Not worth the risk. Already played my 30 min of it. 10/10 would play again!
 

TordanGow

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Oh the old days of full feature trials.

cmp eax,1E
jge 004009CA

I never hex edited that type of code before, I swear!
 
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Exavior

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I think it's more just trying to bypass the "one shot" nature of it, moreso than the time limit. Frankly, I can't think of any prior example where a demo has been time-limited to where you are only able to play it ONCE, period. The demo sold me on the game, but I do feel this was a poor choice on the developer's side.



Sure, okay, though you're not going to see me shedding many tears for a corporation trying to limit access to an already-limited demo.

i have played many demos (in the past few years) that were time limited. Some at 30 minutes, some 1 - 3 hours. I have never once had an issue with it or gave it another thought.
 

N4CR

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Actually, I've used demos in legit ways to determine if the game is for me or not.

Demos are awesome, and it's not a lot of work to limit them to a small subset of game content. Be it a single level, or whatever. There's a lot of developers that undervalue demos, or, like in this case, use poor execution.

Exploitation of this method is the developer's fault. This is an avoidable scenario, if they didn't suck at programing and packaging.

I've bought many games after playing awesome demos. And I've overlooked far more games, just because they had no demo.
Same, I had a great time on older demos in the days, last one I played was doom 2016 to see how my 290x would run it, played it quite a bit and had a great time, purchased it afterwards too.

Remember the PS/PC demo cds you'd get in game mags? Oh the days.. still got some laying around.
 

StaticShoes

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Remember the PS/PC demo cds you'd get in game mags? Oh the days.. still got some laying around.

Yup. I have a stack of really old PC Gamer companion CDs around somewhere, those prompted me to purchase a lot of games. My favorite one of those CDs has a large Q on it. Every month I would wait on that magazine with it's CD, I was like a dope fiend waiting for a fix. Man do I also miss shareware, such as DOOM and Warcraft, being able to play through a few levels/missions was what always hooked me.

I played the hell out of RE1 and 2 on the PSX, and I can still play them on the emulator, and I'll probably grab this PC release, even though I believe the demo should have been repeatable.

Edit: Anyone else remember how they removed the S rating on the NA version of RE2? I spent hours and hours doing speed runs only to find out months later they took away the Super rating, we could only go as far as A. :facepalm:
 
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