My Blog

Cheaters Never Prosper (pt2)
In Issue 17 I wrote a small article regarding cheating in Pokemon Go and how it runs the risk of your account being banned. Cheating in games has fallen out of favour in a big way over recent years and even more so with the rise of Multi-player online gaming because cheating has becoming far less fair to those who do not.

There is debate among players as to what constitutes cheating in modern games, but personally I see it as anything which gives you an unfair edge over another player which was not intended by the developers. This includes mods and hacks, buying in game items with real money or making use of bots to play for you. This is mirrored by many online game companies; even my own brother received such a ban from World of Warcraft for buying gold!
Of course, cheating is not new.  We all remember using the ABACABB blood code in the original Mortal Kombat to turn the blood on or the sound test codes in Sonic 2 to activate Level Selects or other functions. The difference between now and then though is that these games were for the most part single player games where the only person you were cheating was yourself. Another example is if you play Final Fantasy VII with a myriad of action replay codes to make yourself a level 99 team with best gear and material at the start of the game, nobody is affected by that except yourself.

Many older cheat codes, like the level selects and additional weapon codes, are in fact only built in to the game in order to allow developers to quickly test later, harder parts of games without having to go through the game as players do. They just often didn’t remove them, and then various sources would find them. Remember those old gaming magazines that would provide you with cheats?

However, cheating is not gone completely in gaming today. Prime example is the Pokemon games, where people have found ways of hacking Pokemon save files and simply creating the perfect Pokemon from scratch. These are often done so well that people find it impossible to prove the hack.

Steam has also contained an anti-cheating component since 2002, banning players from certain games if it detects any evidence of cheating. While my research has indicated that a vast majority of those games supporting this anti-cheat function are indeed multi-player, it does show that Steam are doing a good job of keeping it fair.

So if you want to cheat, save it for a game that only you are playing. Keep it fair, because there is no victory in an unfair fight.
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