How Do Developers Solve Game Hacks and Cheats? (part 1)

If you’ve ever played a highly competitive PC game, you’ve probably faced fraudsters. It could be a precision millimeter sniper gun, a player “flying” around the map, or an opponent who can track your exact location. The problem of cheating in online PC games is becoming more serious than ever and developers have been coping with new ways.

Over the past week, developers of Call of Duty: Warzone, PUBG and Destiny 2 titles have all announced it will be more aggressive with fraud. Valorant, the most viewed game on Twitch, is also facing this difficulty even though it has not even been released.

Cheating in PC games is not something new. Hacking and cheat software has been around since PC gaming was born. Aimbots will automatically aim accurately at the opponent’s head, the only remaining thing is to press the fire button. Wallhacks reveal the location of all players in the map even if they hide in locations that are not visible from the player’s point of view. This gives the fraudsters a great advantage. The most serious is lag switching, mainly appearing in games using peer-to-peer networks.

Aimbots and wall hacks are the two most common types of fraud in online shooters. It allows new or weaker players to take absolute advantage over other players. It can be very easy to identify some cheat tricks like when a player passes the map at an unbelievable speed. Some other hacking techniques, such as wall hacking, are harder to detect and often become in-game within weeks to months.

The battle between game developers and the communities of people who create and sell cheating software is like a cat and mouse game. Cheaters often buy software that acts like a malware and change the structure of the game with new lines of code. These software have become more complex in recent years. There are even underground communities constantly working to make sure no one can spot them. Of course they have to pay a certain monthly fee.