Pirates crack Grand Theft Auto 4 (GTA 4) DRM

Posted by TEAM FILEnetworks | 12/04/2008 | | 31 Comments »

Two days ago, we reported how a Clone DVD of Grand Theft Auto 4 got leaked to BitTorrent networks around the world. This release was downloaded by many pirates but they were refrained from playing as the game was protected by SecuROM Digital Rights Management (DRM) software. However, just after 2 days since the game’s official North American release, pirates have managed to release the first partially working crack for the game which bypasses the SecuROM DRM.

Up until now, there have been various releases of Grand Theft Auto 4 on both private and public torrent trackers, one click hosting sites as well as usenet newsgroups. Releases by groups THEPIRATEGAY, 0X0008 and ePEN15 but these were all Clone DVDs or contained non working cracks. The first working crack for GTA 4 comes from a group who identify themselves as CRACKING GODS. This was stolen by scene group LOBO and then PROPERed by FCUKTHESCENE (A P2P group).

Even if you decided to pirate the game, managed to get hold of a cracked copy, bypassed the activation and got the game to work does not mean that all your troubles are over. In a recent interview given to IGN UK, Rockstar dropped some interesting comments about cracked versions of GTA 4:

In the seemingly inevitable event that some dirty pirate manages to crack GTA IV PC and make it available, what are the advantages and disadvantages to using a legitimate copy over a pirated one?

Rockstar: Aside from the fact that warez are a great place to pick up a Trojan or key logger, using a cracked copy of GTA IV PC will result in varying changes to the game experience. These can range from comical to game-progress-halting changes.

It is apparent that Rockstar are talking about SecuROM (and FADE) triggers present in the game. Triggers are the part of DRM protection that is embedded into the game code (group HATRED once call this SecuROM ‘molesting’ the game code). These are triggered once a pirated copy is detected. In such cases, game will usually launch just fine but something that is critical to progress in-game would be disabled (best example would be scenario surrounding Mass Effect’s galaxy map).

Even with GTA 4 cracks by CRACKING GODS, LOBO and FCUKTHESCENE, it looks like triggers are still present in the executable. Pirates who used the crack to bypass the DRM protection (online activation + DVD check) ran into odd in game behavior such as vehicles accelerating without user command or shaky or wobbly camera (hence why we called the crack ‘partially’ working). Currently the only workarounds for these problems seem to be renaming a dll file, restarting the game and not connecting to internet (even these do not work sometimes). For a more permanent solution, pirates and those who don’t like the DRM on their systems will have to wait for a PROPER crack which has all triggers removed. That being said, the fact remains that there is now a cracked version of GTA 4 on the net and it is being downloaded by thousands of individuals as we speak.

UPDATE: PROPER released by ‘Wurstsuppe’. Along with instructions on how to use the release, he mentions the following in the .NFO:

NOTE: To solve the problem with the camera bug, turn down the resulution then restart the computer, and then it works, at least for 6 six friends of mine and me Notes to Rockstar: hehehe... so, you spent 200k on protection and now i owned you. hahahaha

UPDATE 2: GTA 4 Securom.Bypass.Launcher.UBER-PROPER-FeD0R is out. Technically it's not a crack but a fake launcher that merely bypasses SecuROM. Pirated versions used with this release does not seem to have the wobbly/drunk camera problems or other showstopper bugs triggered by the protection. Some users have reported framerate increases by 10-15FPS as well.

UPDATE 3: Razor1911 has cracked it. Read all about it here.

Please DO NOT post download links to cracks or key generators here.

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  1. whosez // 12/04/2008 01:08:00 PM  

    Only a matter of time....

  2. zyym // 12/04/2008 01:13:00 PM  

    looks like one privet tracker has a proper crack. Bypass/Crack + Cam fix.

  3. whosez // 12/04/2008 01:21:00 PM  

    Can someone confirm this,that if you run the game compatible with win98 that its gonna run smoothly,also that the purchased version has these same problems as the cracked game(shaky cam etc)..lightning?

  4. whosez // 12/04/2008 01:21:00 PM  

    Can someone confirm this,that if you run the game compatible with win98 that its gonna run smoothly,also that the purchased version has these same problems as the cracked game(shaky cam etc)..lightning?

  5. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/04/2008 01:30:00 PM  

    Dunno about windows 98 compatibility but the legitimate versions also has those missing texture problems. As for wobbly cam and cars auto accelerating i think those are in the pirated version only. Texture problems will probably be fixed by a driver update by nvidia or ati.

  6. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/04/2008 02:31:00 PM  


  7. Eric Enrique // 12/04/2008 02:46:00 PM  

    I'm still gonna wait for a scene release. Particularly because it will be entirely cracked by then.

    Concerning these texture problems and other performances problems, most of them are due to the extremely high system requirements. The legitimate version has them too. The thing is: most of the people has a 8800GT and always played all the newest games with no problem. But, apparently, this one won't work as just fine as the other games in these commom graphics cards and in two-core processors.

  8. whosez // 12/04/2008 04:50:00 PM  

    (regarding the Grand.Theft.Auto.4.CrackOnly.Proper-Wurstsuppe crack)renaming/deleting GTAIVGDF.dll WORKED !

    the shaky camera went off!

    ps. i think deleting GTAIVGDF.dll might increase your fps as well, it felt like my fps were higher anyway...

  9. k // 12/04/2008 05:14:00 PM  

    Notes to Rockstar: hehehe... so, you spent 200k on protection and now i owned you. hahahaha


  10. Violated // 12/04/2008 05:28:00 PM  

    whosez, whats your pc configuration and how does the game play on it? Just curious since there are so many claims about this one being a poor port!

  11. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/04/2008 09:48:00 PM  

    Prince of Persia 2008 releases on the 12th. Boy oh boy i need a new HDD.

  12. Eric Enrique // 12/04/2008 10:24:00 PM  

    Yeah man, I'm gonna need a new HDD too.
    Gamespot and IGN say it's out on December 9. I'm actually more eager to Prince of Persia than GTAIV.

    I can remember clearly December of 2005. PoP the 2 thrones was release and it was the crack that's taken most time to be broken. The only way to play it was disconnection CD/DVD driver's power cable. I did it, regardlessly.

    I'm afraid that this' year PoP is that hard to crack...

  13. TEAM FILEnetworks // 12/04/2008 10:54:00 PM  

    POP two thrones used the Starforce protection that seemed to be uncrackable at that time. It was eventually broken and RELOADED released tools and documentation that made reverse engineering the protection way easier. Nowadays Starforce is easier to crack than SecuROM and is pretty much 0Day. It's unlikely UBI will use Starforce for POP 2008 though.

  14. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/05/2008 02:28:00 AM  

    Looks like there are more triggers than the spinning camera, exploding vehicles and self driving cars.
    There is a mission where you have to go to the internet cafe and use the computers there. If you are using a cracked version you won't be able to complete this mission as you won't be able to use the computers (the key icon is visible but nothing happens when you press it).

  15. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/05/2008 02:36:00 AM  

    Here is a summary of problems which I think are only present in the cracked version of the game:

    1. Self driving vehicles / auto accelerating vehicles
    2. Missing pedestrians
    3. Exploding vehicles
    4. Spinning, wobbly camera
    5. Cannot complete internet cafe mission in single player - cant use computers in cafe.

    (ThYou may or may not run into any or all of the problems mentioned above. It's totally random and cant be predicted).

  16. whosez // 12/05/2008 04:44:00 AM  

    Cracking gods made it to GCW(game.copy.world:)

  17. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/05/2008 10:56:00 AM  

    GTA.IV.Crack.Securom.Bypass.Launcher.UBER-PROPER by FeD0R.
    People seem to be getting 5-10 more FPS with this one and there is no drunken camera.

    However, command line parameters do not seem to work with this one.

  18. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/05/2008 01:00:00 PM  

    If you can't get FeD0R release to work, uninstall the game, reinstall and try.

  19. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/05/2008 05:06:00 PM  

    Well this is hilarious. Group 0x0008 has stolen the FeD0R crack and re released to the scene as their own. And they have apparently quit ths scene with this release. From NFO:

    "Hey Folks,
    after a longer testing-session of the crack we pred with our GTA-Release we discovered more and
    ingame protections, thats why we now bring a new and working crack which bypasses the activation
    of the game, bypasses the serial check and at least bypasses the securom itself. This means
    that no ingame-protections will come up again

    Group News:
    This will be our last release. It was a funny time but we are getting addictive of releasing
    stuff for you and we dont want to do this the time but we are getting addictive of releasing
    whole day, we all have jobs, family and friends.
    We had a great time with you, had at least two great releases (NFS:U and GTA4) but now its time
    that other groups get the chance to release the most exspected games of the year.
    Maybe we will bring Diablo3 but thats future... So goodbye to all suppliers, and new friends
    we met. We dont care if you didnt like us, as we said we did this for fun, not to being respected by you
    Regards, Team 0x0008 - the number better"

  20. TEAM FILEnetworks // 12/05/2008 05:13:00 PM  

    "Team 0x0008 - the number better"

    That's BS. All they released were stolen P2P cracks (some of them not even working).
    Although they claim to be 'the number better', 0x0007 (German group) have proven they can actually crack SecuROM rather than stealing p2p stuff.

  21. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/05/2008 09:42:00 PM  

    Here is how to get the command line parameters to work with the FeD0R loader:

    1. Create a new text file and name it commandline.txt.
    2. Add all the command line parameters in the text file, all in a single line and follow the proper format.
    Ex- if you want to run with -novblank and -norestrictions parameters, add the following line to the text file:

    -novblank -norestrictions

    Save the text file and place it in the GTA4 directory and run the game.
    No triggers, better framerates and customizable settings.

  22. Eric Enrique // 12/05/2008 11:57:00 PM  

    Can someone confirm if all the triggers are bypassed by now???

    I'm waiting for a RELOADED release (or some other reliable scene group)...

  23. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/06/2008 12:55:00 AM  

    "Can someone confirm if all the triggers are bypassed by now???"

    With the FeD0R loader, I don't think you'll have a problem with triggers. I think it bypasses the SecuROM protection completely.

  24. TEAM FILEnetworks // 12/06/2008 01:54:00 PM  
  25. Lightning_Struck_Tower // 12/06/2008 08:32:00 PM  

    If you get Could not run GTAIV.exe errors with FED0r release, replace the original gtaiv.exe (dont leave any cracked versions instead of the original)

  26. TEAM FILEnetworks // 12/08/2008 12:13:00 AM  

    Please do not post links to cracks or keygens here.

  27. Dejan92 // 1/03/2009 03:50:00 AM  

    Ive done that about Error: Could not run GTAIV.exe...
    And nothing :( same thing..
    If u can somehow tell me your msn or something so u can do it at Teamviewer, please?

  28. putta // 2/02/2009 11:10:00 PM  

    Oh, god
    i think it is the end. i tried nearly 125-150 cracks, all have some or the other problem.i think no one can crack it.the torrents in the site would be dead in near future and there would be no crack release.
    i lost hope.more than 60% cracks were virus.and some of them were in the name of some partially working crack.
    And surely Rockstar ROCKS

  29. Matt // 4/10/2011 02:23:00 PM  

    ive got a working crack, but it doesnt remove the triggers...
    still, i would rather wait for a crack with all triggers removed than pay for the game and support all this DRM code rape.

  30. Faisal // 7/04/2011 04:47:00 PM  


  31. Faisal // 7/04/2011 04:47:00 PM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.