D1009 T1744 Y2006Reader's Poll: Cheating In Remission?

Is the cancer of cheating in remission? As honorable gamers, it is possible that we have waited out the worst of the siege that hackers have laid to our favorite pastime…

On more than a few occasions, the dialogue at ‘Tied the Leader’ has been given over to raging against cheaters who spoil our collective fun on Xbox Live. Constant Readers may have noticed that this has not been the case in more than a little while. You may ask yourself: Why?

At one point, ‘Tied the Leader’ made a conscious choice to ignore them [to the best of our ability]. Our point had been made – beaten to death; beaten into glue. Everyone who was aware of this blog knew that we thought cheating was “bad”. We were aware that we were not alone. Focusing our attention on those losers – putting their name in print – didn’t exactly provide them with an incentive to cease and decist with their shenanigans. In hindsight, it might have had the inverse effect. Gamer’s love seeing their name in pixels.

Lately, however, it might be agreed upon that the riotous mob of modders who have traditionally plagued the matchmaking system of Halo 2 seem to have dispersed. Now, it would be foolish to say that it never happens anymore. Sadly, that will never be the case. Ask Agent Smith… Hackers will always find a way. Yet, once upon a time [not too long ago], it seemed like 1 out of every 3 matches featured an appearance by some super-jumping freak running a bluestreak. Sometimes, they would cross your path 3 times in a row. I will never forget the first time I shot a train out of my gun.

I am going On Record.

Almost two years after the release of Halo 2 into the wilderness of Xbox Live, I think the landscape is a lot safer for the honest gamer. Three cheers for anyone who ever dropped a dime of negative feedback on a cheater. Hats off to the Praetorians. Blessed be The Banhammer.

Can I get an “Amen”? It may be that a third [or even a fourth] Xbox Live subscription is worth the grief that one can inflict on one’s fellow gamer. When a cheater gets up to their fifth or sixth gamertag, it is easy to imagine that those enrollment fees start to take a toll on one’s steam.

It makes sense if you think about it. Cheaters don’t play a game out of love. Cheating is not even about Victory. It’s a destructive act of defiance. It’s violence against something widely regarded as “good”. While a true gamer will play a game that they love for years [going on two], the antics of cheating must grow old even to the cheater.

We’ve seen it all; and we’ve seen it enough times for all of it to lose its shock value. Never-miss Snipers. Faster-than-light flag-thieves. High-flying Warthogs. Firearms that pack the punch of a Scorpion Tank? It has all become older than a fraternity-house fart-joke passed down through the ages like bad wisdom. When people stop laughing at a joke, do you stop telling it? I do. Except for that one about the talking cow…

Perhaps this is the best time to be a Spartan – or an Elite, if that’s your bag. Maybe [just maybe] the bandwagon has shaken off its dead weight. Now, in the calm before the storm of Halo 3, the true gamer can roam the streets of Turf without fear – or at least with less of it.

On the flip side, it could be that I am just not playing enough Halo. That is a theory that anyone close to me in real life would refute through a teary gale of laughter. This is why I put the question to you, fair gamer. Maybe I am just playing after the cheater’s bedtime. Could I be so charmed as to be the only one experiencing a cessation in hostilites?

Of course, it is possible that this post is my ultimate Act of Hubris. If the Forerunner are listening, the next time I suit up to find a Good Game, I will spawn fifty stories above the map without a weapon in my hands – only to have the contents of my helmet distributed like pink mist through an exit-wound before my feet can touch the ground.

For the moment, however, ‘Tied the Leader’ would like to invite you to a celebration of a small moral victory.

Oo-Rah?

Posted by XerxdeeJ

True Gamers 14

  1. #LINK D1011 T0431
    Demag0gue wrote...

    During the time I’ve been on Live, I’ve been fortunate to only face modders once – the ones where Spartans ran through midair, drove the ‘Hog through midair, and where they never seemed to have any shortage of rockets. I’m sure I’ve faced bridgers and standbyers a bit more frequently – I’ve been booted from some parties due to blue screen issues a few times – but I can’t honestly tell you the frequency with which this happens. I simply can’t point at an instance and say, “Hey, I’m being standbyed.”

    So, I don’t know if it’s actually getting better or not. One would presume that it is. There’s only so many Live accounts that cheaters can afford to buy, and two-months subscriptions get eaten up pretty quick. That would, logically speaking, make it tougher for cheaters to find a clear path to bring their twisted sense of fun to palaver with the true gunslingers.

    Now if only something could be done about these others who have forgotten the faces of their fathers, the ones with anger in their voices and with offenses spewing from their lips. These, too, should be sent west.

  2. #LINK D1011 T1309
    Dweezle wrote...

    I will never forget the game I played once with Snake and ubermorons on Terminal. The funniest thing was that dispite the mods, it was a level playing field, so we didn’t mind the match. We actually ended up tieing or winning I think. They spawned Banshees instead of Ghosts on the map. Anyhoo who knows me well at all knows I have a passionate love affair with the vehicle we all know as Banshee. To be able to fly it around on Terminal of all places, and still win the game? Now that was odd.

    Maybe cheating has subsided. I mean you still hear about it now and then, but maybe with newer games for new systems cheaters can spend their time better by modding more realistic environments. Heres is cheating on the downfall. For now…

  3. #LINK D1011 T1440
    Quikthnkr wrote...

    I would agree that there has been a bit of a decline in cheating but I wouldn’t call the war over just yet. Every time there is a big announcement involving Halo or Bungie in the mainstream news I see a bit of a spike in cheating.

    I get standbyed a lot. Especially when little Timmy is playing on Saturdays and Sundays. And just this past Sunday I got hit with a new Mod I had never seen before (and would be grateful to never see again).

    We all know what happens if we go into the water in Relic. Anything over 3 feet deep or so = Death. Well in this particularly nasty mod I spawned in the water and lived. In fact I could go anywhere I wanted to… as long as I stayed under water. But I could not reach the shore no matter how far or long I ran. And so I ran around desperately trying to find a beach I could scale while the modder scored the flag and my teammates quit. Not fun.

  4. #LINK D1011 T1514
    DigitalDren wrote...

    I cant quite remember the last time I was in a game where someone was using mods. Maybe I have had a lot of luck or its really on a decline. I have had some games in the past that used mods. Like spawning atop Relic and you die before you hit the ground. And for the split second you live, you could trough rockets instead of grenades.

    Another mod game of the past was one on Warlock. It was a slayer game and one guy could run faster then Superman. Also if you stepped out into the open, you were promptly shot no matter where the modder was. Well I got lucky and managed to step out in front of the modder. I had the shot gun and gave him a shot to the face. He drop like the spineless weasel he is. I proceeded to taunt him until I was shot. :P

    Well I think another part to the decline of the cheaters. Is the fact that Microsoft has stopped including 2 Month free trials in the games. That way its harder for people to play for free. Well I hope it stays this way as maybe we can actually play the game as it was intended. And maybe someday there will actually be true lvl 50’s out there.

    Dren

  5. #LINK D1011 T1655
    SavageScrapple wrote...

    I just figured out that we could post our comments about the blog. I have been reading these things for weeks. Little slow, I guess.

    I too have noticed that the incidents of cheated have gone down. Like many I could go on and on about the crazy things I have experienced due to misdirected efforts of kids whom in my opinion are quiet clever. Lately it seems when I lag out it might be due to a bad connection and not someone punching that magical standby button. My biggest problem is having my team quit on me after the other teams scores. Nobody likes a quitter.

    This is I am sure is due in no small part to the efforts Microsoft, Bungie and websites such as TTL that expose these nasty little hackers and ban them. I also believe that maybe Halo 2 is just not as popular as it used to be. When Halo 2 was shiny and new Big Team Skirmishers (Big Team Battle) used to fill rapidly. These days it seems that I can wait for 10 minutes for Team Slayer game to start. Perhaps the cheaters have moved on to party poker or working on how to mod their 360s for Halo 3 leaving us dedicated players to enjoy the game they disrespected. For however long it lasts, it is nice to brave the wilds of matchmaking and maybe get pwnd by somebody’s skills not their mods.

    SavageScrapple

  6. #LINK D1011 T1742
    narfridden wrote...

    I think the number of cheaters has declined due to the lack of free 2 month trials

  7. #LINK D1011 T2007
    Kaiavatar wrote...

    I fondly remember one match on Turf… And after the first spawn all I did was drop out of the air by the Scarab head and be riddled by bullets from either a Sniper rifle or a Warthog chaingun… afterwards I made sure to congratulate them all on a good game and leave them some positive feedback concering their creative Kirkian way of winning this particular scenario… up until the congartulations part I was telling the truth … sorry for the tangent.

    Now if only they could figure out the lag issues and things having to do with bridgers.

  8. #LINK D1011 T2127
    LordGideon wrote...

    Cheating is in decline. Our Halo2Cheaters.com website is seeing a marked difference in cheating submissions.

    But while it may now be semi-safe to stick your head in matchmaking again, the stupid idiots are working on cracking the Xbox 360 open.

    Let’s hope that when Halo 3 comes out, they haven’t succeeded yet.

  9. #LINK D1012 T1639
    Locke wrote...

    One thing that should be noted is that there are places away from X-Box Live for modders to play without being banned. This could be why there has been a decrease in cheating activity, coupled with the aforementioned theories.

  10. #LINK D1012 T1949
    Suicidesamuraiz wrote...

    Sadly, I think the way cheating is occours has changed. There is less stand-by, bridging, and hard-modding, but I’ve heard a lot of talk about soft-modding onto memory-cards. Extra damage, extra sheilds, and a few other perks seem to be the new flavor, as well as the button combos.

    It does appear that cheating is less damaging than it was after Christmas of this year (when I basically quit for a few months), and the spring/summer before that, when every game had a blue-screen moment.

    I do think that the ban-hammer has helped, and I think that the determination of the community will win this war.

  11. #LINK D1013 T1228
    Th3 Gun5ling3r wrote...

    During my most recent online experiences, I have been modded/cheated only once that I can recall. It was on Elongation, it was Team Slayer, and my entire team was spawn killed on the conveyor in the red hallway; with the sniper rifle! We let them have their fun, asked the other team the obligatory question, “What do you get out of that?” after the match, and left our feedback. I have faith that these four accounts are now as we speak forever burning in a molten pit in the 7th level of Halo hell.

    TTL’s very own Dweelze also helped to confirm our suspicions that the ban-hammer works wonders against cheaters. After doing some “covert” stuff, he had a very enlightening conversation with a modder, and has the text to prove it. If this modder is any representation of the modding community that once terrorized XBL, then the modders are on the run. They know that they have approximately six hours to get that level up, and then Bam, the hammer comes down. Modders have also migrated to the other avenues of online gaming where they can terrorize gamers for free.

    Great job Bungie. Thanks for keeping our digital battleground as safe as possible from gamers who would take our fun away!

  12. #LINK D1013 T1230
    TTL Saej wrote...

    I have also noticed a decline in cheating, but I think that may be because I play customs 90% of the time.

    The good thing abou the 360 is it only has 48 hour free cards. They can only cheat for so long!

  13. #LINK D1013 T1350
    Socrates @ Work wrote...

    I would mostly agree with SuicideSamuraiz wrote.

    I’ve seen a drop in the more obvious cheating methods, but a market increase in the less-detectable ones: RXR, bridging, and increased damage / damage resistance being the most popular.

    Still, I now run into only one to five cheaters per night, depending on how long I play. Then again, that might be due to the fact that I avoid ranked playlists like a cat avoids bathwater….

    ~Socrates

  14. #LINK D1013 T2319
    Suicidesamuraiz wrote...

    The true crime of cheating, I believe: driving people away from the game.

    I used to play nothing but Slayer and Rumble, and I think I was pretty good at them, having hit 23 and 31 before topping out.

    For the longest time (nearly a year, now), I could only find enjoyment in snipers (before it was ranked) rumble training, and SWAT. Now, when I try to play a “real game,” I am only a shadow of what I was, having lost the strategies and time it takes to adapt and evolve with the pack.

    Since joining TTL Gunslingers, I have met and then booted three friends from my freinds list because they advertised they cheated—either as bridgers, or glitchers.
    I’m glad that I can now have fun with gemers who play the game, and not the people…

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