Diablo III On Consoles Has A Cheating Problem

Diablo III On Consoles Has A Cheating Problem

A big part of Diablo III is playing with other people, whether it's friends or strangers. Many consoles owners have given up on strangers, though, thanks to cheaters doing a fantastic job of making the game tough to enjoy.

I became aware of the problems facing the console versions of Diablo III after a reader wrote in, hoping we might be able to get some answer from Blizzard.

"Why are we abandoned to chaos by Blizzard, while the PC version is taken care of?" wrote Johan.

The console and PC versions of Diablo III are not in parity, but that's always been the case. Seasons, in which players create a new character and only play them for a set period of time, are exclusive to the PC version. (Blizzard has hinted they might come to Xbox One and PlayStation 4, but it hasn't happened yet.)

The rampant cheating, unfortunately, seems exclusive to the consoles.

"We have a new plague," explained Johan.

That "plague" is players exploiting an item called the Gem of Ease, which allows them to rapidly power level characters using an item that grants increased experience per kill. It's possible to hack this item, and allow the player to earn waaaay more experience than should be possible with the Gem of Ease.

Per this Battle.net thread from earlier this year:

Diablo III On Consoles Has A Cheating Problem

107,374,174,208 experience points? That shouldn't be happening.

What's worse, when you're grouped with people, there's a shared experience pool, so if you happen to be paired with someone who's deploying this exploit, you're going to suddenly start gaining hundreds or thousands of levels.

"Those people are joining you group," said Johan, "and before you realise it, your character levels up 100s of levels again in just five seconds. It happened to me yesterday — a guy joined my party, and in five seconds I jumped from level 300 to level 950."

If you become this overleveled, you can't really play with other people anymore.

He's not alone. A Google search brings up many players dealing with this issue.

Such as this thread:

Diablo III On Consoles Has A Cheating Problem

Or this one:

Diablo III On Consoles Has A Cheating Problem

The solution that most players have come up with is to simply stop playing with strangers, since there's no way to guarantee you won't end up with a cheater.

Diablo III On Consoles Has A Cheating Problem

That's not a good solution.

One big difference between the two versions is the Internet connection requirement. You absolutely need one to play Diablo III on PC, which caused all sorts of problems in the game's early days. You don't need one on the consoles.

Sounds great, right? It means people can play offline....but that opens up the game to being hacked and modified, since save files are not controlled by Blizzard's servers. You win some, you lose some. In this case, it's a big loss.

Fortunately, it looks like help is coming. Blizzard admitted to me that Diablo III on consoles was facing serious issues, but the company wants to address them.

"The short answer is yes, we are doing something," a company representative told me. "To set expectations, we want to make sure our community understands that although we would love to remove all hacking on console, by allowing offline play it is impossible for us to shut it down completely."

Something would be better than the current situation of nothing.

"That said, we run some basic sanity checks on gear when a player's character is loaded in," the representative continued. "This is done to disqualify an item if it exceeds the legal boundaries of an item. Starting with patch 2.4 the Gem of Ease on PS4 and Xbox One will be capped to rank 100."

There's no date for patch 2.4, which also has a new zone and a feature called set dungeons, but Blizzard says it should go live on PC and console simultaneously.


    This is kind off topic, but the other day I was leveling up playing normally: 44 -> 45 -> 46 -> 51 !!!

    I still don't know what happened, but for some reason I suddenly gained 5 levels of experience. I assume it was a bug in the code.

      Can be any number of (more) legit ways for that to happen. You might have inadvertantly stumbled into a Torment game, and someone completes a bounty, or something like that. At lvl 46, you're going to get a hell of a chunk of exp, and it can quickly level you. If it was T6 or something like that, 5 levels is pretty easy.

      Back when Season 1 first started, there was an exploitable bounty people could run through and ultimately level super fast. Just had to spark the bounty (just off a path in Act 2 from memory - easy to get to anyway), get out of the way, and let it cycle through without killing anything. Autocompleted after a couple of minutes, and suddenly you got 60 million exp.

      People hit max level in 90 minutes, most of that was farming for that (fairly common) bounty to appear on the list.

    A query if i may but how does anti-DRM arguments going defend this? Don't like DRM myself, but this is one of the reasons they have always online feature to prevent people from "hacking" the game.

      I can show my kids games I used to play like Banjo Kazooie or even older generations.
      If this is all online, one day, it's not going to be available anymore.

      Even offline games are starting to end up like this. Huge updates and changes to base games are not going to be available forever.

    I would rather the consoles have a cheating problem than have to be always online. I would stop playing Diablo 3 if I had to put up with the same shitty lag I have to deal with when I play MMOs or MOBAs for instance.

    I still don't get why they don't just have online characters and offline characters. If the two cant overlap why would we care that some guy in single player is level 1 million.

      it would still affect your toons. Paragon is account wide. so if you happen to get thousands of paragon levels on one character you have thousands across your account.

      Diablo 2 had different offline and online characters, and it was annoying. In effect you played the game twice, and the experiences were completely separate.

      The combined experience was specifically to avoid that this time around, jury's out on whether it worked or not.

    People that hack or cheat multiplayer games are inept, toilet water sipping dickheads.

    Items have been hacked since day 1 of the console release. This is not a new thing.

    This is a lot like the Borderlands Permadeath virus that happened a while back where consoles with a certain flag set would infect anyone that played with that person and change their flag too. Trouble was, the only way this flag could be manually changed was by hacking so once you were infected, that was it unless you knew how to hack the game and unset it.

    Wow.. People still play this trash? Literally the most brain-dead dumbed-down game ever.

    This happened to me just the other day. I only jump on Diablo 3 every few weeks to do a couple of bounties. I still enjoy playing the game but none of my friends play so I don't play to regularly.

    I enjoy playing online with other people some guy joined and started killing things. boom paragon level 1202. Really bummed because I enjoyed the little bit of progress I would make every login.

    Unfortunately I didn't think to check my cloud save until it had been overwritten with the corrupted one.

    Last edited 16/11/15 9:54 am

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