Call of Duty rolls out additional mitigations to frustrate cheaters

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,321   +162
Staff member
The big picture: Call of Duty is one of the most popular franchises in gaming. Unfortunately, it's also a magnet for cheaters looking for an unfair advantage against their peers. The relationship between cheat makers and a game's developer largely mirrors what we see in the greater software security industry between bad actors that write nefarious code and anti-virus solutions providers.

In short, devs are constantly coming up with new ways to detect and block those who don't play by the rules; the cheaters respond with new tactics to gain the upper hand. Rinse and repeat.

Call of Duty's anti-cheat team – Ricochet – employs a variety of mitigations against cheaters. These are usually designed to keep cheaters in the game for longer so they can better analyze their tactics and strengths while simultaneously making their presence less impactful to legitimate players. It also no doubt frustrates cheaters.

One popular example is the damage shield. If you are being shot and notice your health is only slowly tricking down, you are likely playing against an identified cheater who has had their weapons severely nerfed. The hope is that the legitimate player is able to identify and dispatch the cheater with ease, and also to publicly shame the cheater.

Another mitigation tactic is called cloaking. When a cheater is hit with cloaking, their bullets cause their opponents to disappear. Suddenly, the enemy is invisible and they are left wondering what just happened. Again, this makes it much easier for the legitimate player to "take care of business themselves."

The team's latest mitigation is called disarm. As the name suggests, cheaters hit with this tool will have their weapons taken away. They won't even be able to use a melee attack. The team equates it to putting the cheater in time out.

The mitigations appear to be having an impact on matches with cheaters reported but as you can see, there's still an ebb and flow with spikes and dips as cheaters thwart methods and devs respond, respectively.

Team Ricochet said additional mitigations are active, and that some new ones are also in development.

It's also worth noting that these mitigations are in addition to their biggest deterrent to cheating: bans. Since its last update on April 26, the team has issued another 180,000+ bans across Vanguard and Warzone combined.

Ricochet shared helpful links to support pages outlining how to submit in-game cheater reports for Vanguard and Warzone. Furthermore, they recommend turning on two-factor authentication to protect your account from those that have been banned and are looking to sneak back into the game with a fresh ID.

Looking ahead, the team said its anti-cheat tech will be active on day one for both Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II and Warzone 2.0. MW II is scheduled to arrive on October 28, 2022, with Warzone 2.0 to follow shortly after.

Permalink to story.

 

psycros

Posts: 4,331   +6,320
Trolls who just want to watch the world burn and insecure males who desperately need to win at something have always been the bane of fair gaming. But when e-sports started making money it inherited all the problems of other sports: cheating, recruitment of ringers and even doping. Hacking will only get worse as competitive video gaming grows, and since lag is inherent to remote game streaming that's not going to be a solution any time soon. Furthermore, if the pros are using PEDs then you can just imagine what the underground gambling champs are pumping into their brains.
 

brucek

Posts: 1,204   +1,752
Banning is fine with me. I also like putting all cheaters into their own league / server / matches so they can just annoy each either. Maybe even with some cheat-strength NPCs or environmental mechanics too as a special bonus for these special players.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 2,584   +3,158
TechSpot Elite
This is why I don't bother with these games. It's hard to know if I got killed because the opponent was better, because of dumb luck or because of cheating. The last time I was involved in serious PvP was in Star Wars Galaxies.
 

3ogdy

Posts: 67   +54
I love CoD. I played Mobile until I got tired of always getting killed, sometimes in record time.
I'm not a professional player, just a casual one. I wanted to enjoy the game as a CoD fan, but it was unplayable at that rate.

Some people were way better at aiming than I could have ever been thanks to Bluestacks and mice (I played on my phone, using on-screen controls).

I'm glad to hear cheaters are getting banned and that Karma (Ricochet) is doing its thing, making the game as enjoyable for cheaters as they make it for others like me.

I'm honestly considering returning to this game upon reading this article.
 

texasrattler

Posts: 1,324   +637
I love CoD. I played Mobile until I got tired of always getting killed, sometimes in record time.
I'm not a professional player, just a casual one. I wanted to enjoy the game as a CoD fan, but it was unplayable at that rate.

Some people were way better at aiming than I could have ever been thanks to Bluestacks and mice (I played on my phone, using on-screen controls).

I'm glad to hear cheaters are getting banned and that Karma (Ricochet) is doing its thing, making the game as enjoyable for cheaters as they make it for others like me.

I'm honestly considering returning to this game upon reading this article.
Well hate to break it to you but this is mainly fighting against rage hacking. Dr Disrepect has say the game is joke, cheating out of control and he knows ppl are cheating.
While the anti cheat works, it also takes time for it to work. However, cheat makers are usually faster at updating and things go back to normal for the cheater.

Some will say cheating is a lot less or that they don't see cheating.
Some will say cheating is still the same, maybe even more so than before, that ppl are hiding them better or pay for really good cheats that are undetectable.

All I know is cheating is a problem now just as it was 2 yrs ago. Imo not enough is being done. Over 4 billion dollars has been made by Warzone and you can't even get cheating under control? Come on.
 

Uncle Al

Posts: 9,070   +8,100
It's the main reason I only suport single player games. If they want to add a multi-player option that's fine but develop the single player first and foremost. There was a time when life time bans were based on player IP addresses to prevent them from re-accessing under a different name but haven't seen that used in a very long time.
 

texasrattler

Posts: 1,324   +637
It's the main reason I only suport single player games. If they want to add a multi-player option that's fine but develop the single player first and foremost. There was a time when life time bans were based on player IP addresses to prevent them from re-accessing under a different name but haven't seen that used in a very long time.
That still happens along with hwid bans but in this day n age you can circumvent almost any mitigation. Spoofing is big for ip and hwid and they do work.
The real issue is if you can make over 4 billion dollars n not be able to at least get issues/cheating under some control, you got a real problem. They know it which is why W2 was made. Will it fix anything, who knows. Time will tell but I'll go ahead and say don't hold your breath.