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Game makers need to keep up with cheaters

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As soon as games became competitive, cheating became a problem. It’s an issue that the industry faces in an endless battle, and rampant cheating could turn any potential metaverse into a digital hellscape.

At our GamesBeat Summit Next event, we hosted a panel on cheating that included Riot Games anti-cheat lead Phillip Koskinas, Together Labs director of trust and safety Denise Pollock, and Irdeto by Denuvo chief marketing officer Steeve Huin.

Koskinas himself used to create cheats in his younger days. Now he works at Riot making sure that its games are as fair as possible. “Originally I couldn’t aim, and all my friends could. And that was difficult for me,” Koskinas noted during the panel, explaining how he originally got into the business of making cheats and then selling them. “I had cats to feed.”

His knowledge of exploits and cheats made him valuable at Riot, that offered him a job instead of taking any legal action against him. “I didn’t feel threatened, actually,” Koskinas said. “I felt welcomed, but it was a change.”

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It’s inevitable that some people are going to want to cheat in video games. But it can be surprising just how many people are willing to go to lengths to give themselves an unfair advantage. ” The reality is that its humans, right?” noted Huin. “And there’s always a tendency to want to make things simpler, an intent to be better than everyone else.”

These days, many players are part of large and small gaming communities, on sites like Reddit or services like Discord. “It’s harder for platforms to detect that if you’re not looking for it,” said Pollock.

“It’s not just one person you’re trying to deter,” added Koskinas. “They work together.”

So it the game makers themselves may have to similarly join forces to fight back. Instead of banning a cheater from one game, perhaps infrastructure can be created that would kick a player out of a network of games. Such a thing could be difficult to implement, however.

But even if cooperation amongst companies doesn’t evolve to that extent, it is still necessary to tackle the never-ending threat of cheaters.

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