NoGame got fed up and isn't going to take it anymore. He's starting a posse to hunt down and sodom... er, lynch all the cheating Timmies of the world. You in?
Ah, shit. I'm dead again.
Where in the hell did that come from? I'm watching the kill cam and I can't see anything. Oh, there he is. He's on top of the roof in the building in the back of the map.
How in the hell did he get on top of that building? I've tried and tried to hit that corner but I always come up short. This kid has to have some sick jumping skills to hit that. Oh, I see what he's doing. He's humping the corner of the box behind the forklift in the hanger until he falls through the map and it puts him on top of the roof.
WTF. Now there's another thing I have to put on my list to watch for when I play this game. Instead of focusing on capturing an objective, running a flag or planting a bomb, now I have to worry about looking in the back corner of the map seven stories in the air after 33 seconds have elapsed in the first round to make sure some douchebag isn't trying to give his team a dose of the special sauce.
Back in the day, cheat codes were great because they gave you a way to keep enjoying your game long after you have beaten it the first time around. Anyone remember the Game Shark or Game Genie?
Normally, you had to complete the game to get a chance at using these codes ... or know a friend who knows a friend, who has a cousin that beat the game. It made you feel like you were part of a secret society, and that you discovered this beautiful new thing that let you enjoy your game for just a little bit longer. Who doesn’t remember the first time you got unlimited lives in Contra (up, up, down, down, B, A, B, A, Start), or the first time you found the level skip in Super Mario Brothers that let you jump straight to Bowser's castle? Figuring out these little nuances of games was like a rite of passage and it gave us something that we could brag about to our buddies or hold over their heads.
We were a bit naïve in those days and we didn’t have anything to help us along the way so we had to rely on ingenuity and our friends if we were going to figure out ways to extend the life of our games. Then came the internet with cheat sites, step-by-step how-tos, walkthroughs and YouTube, and all that hard work we put in went to shit. Now it's as easy to order Viagra (DAMN YOU SPAMMERS) as it is to find a cheat code that'll you beat a game without even playing *cough* Avatar: The Legend Of Aang – The Burning Earth *cough*
As the years have rolled by and we've gotten older and weaker, the cheats or hacks have been using the juice. First came the developers giving you extras like cheat codes, bonus levels, super jumps, gravity defying boots, unlimited lives and level jump codes. Over the years these cheat codes have become more powerful, more easily accessible, and have slowly given birth to the spawn-of-Satan-hacking-L33T-asshole crowd of Timmies who have taken in-game exploits to new levels with such things as: 10th prestige lobbies, modded controllers, out of the map glitches, super jumps (not the good kind), aim bots, the elevator glitch, care package glitches and invincibility, to name a few.
Gamers aren't happy and they want something done ... yesterday. Developers patch their games, deploy hotfixes, issue widescale bans, and Microsoft tries to hold back the floodgates as the water rushes over the levee.
Can they be stopped? Is there an ultimate fix? Right now we're stuck taking baby steps.
Giants of the industry like Bungie, Treyarch, and the now defunct Infinity Ward have been listening to the outcry of their fans. Yep, that's right, your pasttime of posting incessantly in their forums hasn't gone unheard (for the most part). You aren't getting that special skirt and lipstick to match your BR in Halo, but they are putting in place measures to take care of people who are using known glitches and to prevent them in the future.
Infinity ward has the insta-kill feature that has been in place as far back as CoD 2, which instantly penalizes a person for jumping outside the map or being some place they shouldn't, although they didn't include this at first in their newest games ... bastards. They have also recently banned upwards of 2500 gamertags found guilty of exploiting known glitches. As an extra step to deter would-be multiplayer manipulators, Infinity Ward has restricted the XP of gamers who quit early in an effort to stop people from dropping when they are losing their matches, and also stop people from using lag switches.
Treyarch, who is producing the next installment in the CoD series has taken the torch and made it their mission to get the 30 to 40 percent of gamers who never venture into the online portion of the game to pull up their skirts and make the plunge. In a recent interview with a site to remain unnamed, the lead multiplayer designer for Treyarch stated different reasons why people aren't plugging in:
"The atmosphere, the environment, is pretty hostile in some cases," Vonderhaar admits. "Mom jokes. Lots of dick conversations. Lots of hatred and racial bigotry."
Sounds like the off topic forum...
The red headed step child of CoD developers has also hopefully stepped up their game when it comes to glitchers and has given the gamers of the world a tool to record these exploits with a theater feature à la Halo. They are hoping that giving the gamers the option of recording and watching the playback of their matches will help to slow the flow of people who are willing to hump the third rock from the left for a kill streak.
Theater "started as a bug tool," Vonderhaar said. A funny bug was being sent around the office -- specifically, a guy's face was "stretched out and distorted" – and the team loved it and thought, "We have to share this with people. This is too good. We cannot hold this as a bug tool. This is something we can give to people to use." [And also maybe they thought waiting for three years after Halo 3, no one would think they got the idea from Bungie. -- Ed.]
Hopefully gamers use this new feature for more than their latest T-Bag exploits, best no-scope, or knife melee killtacular, and capture some footage of these perps taking advantage of the latest glory hole glitch and put it to good use.
Bungie, the unquestioned King of coding for Xbox Live, and long the leader in FPS online gaming, has never taken glitchers, griefers, modders, or cheaters lightly. A quick google search will show the multiple times over the years Bungie has taken a stand against cheaters.
"From Halo 2, to Halo 3 and now onto Reach," said Brian Jarrad, Bungie’s Community Director, "It’s always a little bit of an arms race. We’re always trying to stay one step ahead and ideally we’ve identified as many of the potential exploits as possible. Certainly that was one of the goals for the beta -- let’s hope to see people push, and try and stress and break the game in different ways."
*click here for the full story*
Bungie hasn’t lost a step in their old age, if anything they became more knowledgeable with their last addition to the Halo family. Beefed up security has been put in place for a full-on Big Brother mode as they unleash the Kracken on some wretched scum in the form of the Quitter Ban.
“This is a relatively soft ban, so we will be using it quite aggressively, activating after only a handful of quits and lasting a rather long time. What does it do? A player with a Quitter Ban will be temporarily unable to re-enter Matchmaking for 15-30 minutes following any further quits.”
*Click here to read the full weekly update from 05.07.10*
These are only a few of the ways that game developers are combating the ever increasing list of easily accessible cheats, hacks, and exploits. If you are curious about what fix is in store for favorite game, or what you want to look out for when you venture into the realm of online play, check out the 2old2play forums. If you are really adventurous you can head out into the wild and visit the game developer’s specific forums for news from the horse’s mouth.
Developers, though they try, cannot be everywhere at once or find every single one of the bugs in a game. Their failure as Guardians of Good Times means we, the "Gaming Community," have to step up to the plate. So what can we, as citizens of the world, do- other than search down, Jay and Silent Bob style, each and everyone of the slime-ball-game-ruining-super-jump-using-glitching-timmie-assholes? That’s a good question, because there are many different ways to report, bring to light, or just basically shit in the sand boxes of these people.
When you find yourself in a game you feel is being played outside the parameters of how it was intended, the first thing you need to do is take note of the gamertags of the responsible parties. Next, you can travel down a couple of different avenues. The slow, discrete way, or the fast, sloppy, wet and satisfying way. You know it’s wrong, but it feels so damn good.
Lets start out with the fast way.
If you have a capture card and you aren’t already recording your gameplay, hit the record button and go live with that motherfucker on youtube, post it in the 2old2play forums, xbox forums, etc. Blast that shit across the internet while making sure to let everyone know the names of the douchebags who ruined your beloved game. If the perpetrators were stupid enough to send you messages over live record those as well because there isn’t any better evidence than someone confessing on video. Also, let it be known that baiting is legal and encouraged in these
circumstances. You are not an official of the law so by no means should you take the high road. After you have taken the "paddle" to the offending parties and plastered their names across the interwebs, report your findings by filing a report with Microsoft Xbox Live officials (follow these steps). That’ll teach those little pricks.
If you want to be a little bit more discreet about your vengeance, or you don't have a fat wad of cash to blow on a capture unit, you’ll have to take a little bit longer route. Microsoft has put tools in place to report this type of abuse on Xbox Live. Here is the short and skinny from Major Nelson on cheating and reporting cheaters on Live. You’ll have to wait for your internet vengeance, but it doesn’t make it any less sweet when the ban hammer comes swinging down - listen to those timmies cry.
Also, some might say that the report function on Live is just for show, that no one ever gets banned from getting reported, or that your report won’t mean anything. Well if you want to see people who have been banned check out this website for the long list of whiny kids and their moms fighting to get their gamertags back to no avail.
Bottom line: cheating sucks.
Don’t be a douche and ruin someone’s fun. The majority of gamers are out to have a good time, but there are always a few bad apples that spoil the bunch. It is up to us (the good guys) to hand out the vigilante justice.
So if someone is shitting in your sandbox don't take it sitting down. Put your well-worn thumbs to use and make sure you are doing your part by filing a report, posting a video of their actions and sending a message to your favorite gaming developers letting them know someone is being a dick.
After all if the gamers don’t speak up, developers probably won’t give two shits. They already have your money.