By Anni Simpson on April 21, 2016 at 11:59am
“Dark Souls 3” players blew up yesterday with accusations they were unable to access the title through Steam. Reddit user HunterKurza documented his issue in a megathread, which appeared in the form of an error message stating that “invalid game data has been detected,” which is against the game’s license agreement. Users who don’t fix the source of the invalid data were slated for bans to their accounts, which is obviously problematic for legitimate users who aren’t cheating and don’t know how to correct the issue.
The Steam and Reddit Dark Souls communities are attempting to suss out the possible triggers for the error message in the absence of any official word from the game’s developers, From Software. The workarounds seem to blame third-party applications, whether or not they would actually count as “cheat engines” including graphics mods and controller fixes/dual-shock support. Redditor R3TR1X has suggested a scorched earth approach to modified systems and recommended that players use anything that has the capacity to alter the game’s files:
- If your files are somehow corrupted (hardware failure, etc.) and your game can still run, you risk getting softbanned. Verify integrity ASAP
- Graphic mods WILL get you banned (they did in SotFS as well): SweetAssX, DSFix, MakeMyGameLookGood.dll, DynamicShadows.dll, ANYTHING that messes with the engine, executable or dlls
- Borderless fullscreen or internal resolution mods, if they touch your .exe you're a goner
- Controller fixes or dual-shock support only if they inject themselves into the .exe or modify game's input dll files
- Obiviously cheats that modify game files or give impossible items/stats INCLUDING savemule
Members of the Steam community have complained about losing game data and needing to start their games over, as well. However, even that solution doesn’t work for all users – some of whom have wiped their setup, started over fresh, and found they still run into the ominous error from From Software.
The strongest lead appears to be from a post on Bamco forms in which one user tested their setup to see if server issues may be involved:
i tested if the error is indeed server related. i movedstuff from inventory to box on my offline data. quit and saved. loged into online and obviously got the error. the items i moved were back in my inventory as if what i did offline did not happen. it's a server error not cheats or your save data. they fucked up skannerz22
However, do be aware that until From Software addresses the issue themselves, the tip is still just a rumor. As Player Theory hears any updates, we’ll inform readers ASAP.
Bamco Reddit: Invalid Data Megathread Reddit: Regarding the Softban Waves Steam