Have You Ever Cheated In An Online Game?

Have You Ever Cheated In An Online Game?

Cheating used to have a lot less consequences, back when accounts weren’t shared across hundreds of games. The main risk you had was losing a single account, which probably didn’t cost much to begin with. So it’s no wonder why like Counter-Strike used to be rife with cheats.

But did you ever cross to the dark side?

I’m asking this for our weekly Tell Us Dammit for a couple of reasons. One, the news about people being raided over GTA cheats – although that’s more to do with the sale and distribution of paid cheats, rather than regular users scamming Rockstar for some virtual bucks – means it’s fresh on the mind.

Secondly, I played a ton of competitive online games. Or esports, as they’re commonly called now. CS, Call of Duty, Starcraft, a bit of Quake on the side, and so on. Do that enough, and you’ll run into cheats here and there.

There was an interesting period for a while where people needed to use cheats, if they were on the anti-cheat team. In CS:GO now, you can toggle a button as a spectator to see other players through walls. From an anti-cheat perspective, it’s a handy way to quickly see if people are accidentally snapping to enemy models (it can happen when someone accidentally toggles an aimbot on, for instance) or being a little too precise with their wall spams.

That didn’t exist back in the day, however. So people needed a very specific cheat to get that functionality for replays. A cheat to catch the cheaters, if you will. I can’t think of many other instances where cheating was OK, however.

But I can remember tons of instances of others cheating, particularly if they thought someone else was cheating. They’re doing it, so I’m just going to level the playing field, the excuses would go.

Sometimes it was just mucking around in public servers, which people treated as a more harmless act. (It’s not an official match, it’s not against me, it’s not anyone I know, that didn’t mean anything, and so on.) Others would do it in pick-up games, which were still largely for fun but had ranked systems. So quite a few instances came up where people would use a cheat for a match or two, make some kind of justification, and then move on.

So with that in mind, I’m curious: have you ever used a cheat in an online game? What was it, what do you remember thinking at the time, and what did you get out of it?

[polldaddy poll=10139905]


  • Can say with absolute confidence that I have never cheated in an online game.

    Making creative use of in-game mechanics, on the other hand…

  • So I did. It was CS 1.6, some of those joke servers. I was intrigued to see how they worked. Downloaded a wall hack and aimbot.

    Ran it in one or two of those WC3 mod servers where you level up, have spells etc.
    It was good in that it gave me a good idea of how to tell if someone else used hacks when spectating, but it wasn’t fun beyond the initial round or two where me and a friend got a few laughs out of it.

    Those websites were unsurprisingly riddled with malware. I uninstalled and that was that.

    I used the D2 map hack a lot for Mephisto and baal runs if that counts?

  • I am far too lazy and paranoid of getting caught to bother with cheating online.
    The closest I ever came is getting a hack for diablo 2 that made it so my character auto-picked up gold as they walked over it.

  • online game cheaters and trolls come across like really insecure people, to me.
    If the only goal is to win at any cost, or you are genuinely that bad at games that you need to cheat, go find another hobby. I bet this kind of behaviour spills over into real life, too.

  • The only online game I’ve cheated in was Diablo 1. That was probably after the point that I played the game more than I used battle.net as a glorified chatroom. Those were good days.

    • Diablo 1 is the only game I ever cheated online with. We used to get mega stats and armour to Hunt PK’s (player killers)

    • Same. I went to a friend’s house and he let me use his character with the cheats enabled. Man that was a looooong time ago.

  • I did when I was 12-13 but not a huge amount.

    2 games I can remember cheating in, pretty sure they’re the only ones. One was a MUD style game, think it was called Shimlar or something like that. I made an extremely basic bot using a macro program to click spots on my screen so I could go to sleep/school and the game would play itself. Did it so I could beat my friends in leveling/gold. Got caught and banned after a few days, didn’t care by that point.

    Other game was Runescape. I played it legit for a fair while but got a bit bored of the grinding. Got a script given to me by a friend that would mine/fish/whatever. I’d sit at my PC doing other stuff while it was working away for me. Never got caught/banned but didn’t cheat for long before I got bored. Went back and played later and didn’t cheat again.

    For me it was an age thing, plus games were much smaller back then – 17-18 years ago. I wouldn’t even consider cheating in games these days either online or single player. I play games for the challenge, cheating reduces that and makes it less fun. If a game is too grindy and boring then I just quit rather than trying to bot it.

  • Have I ever cheated? No. Have I ever exploited game flaws for my own amusement? Most definitely. In other words, I’ve never hacked a game to cheat such as with aim bots or wall hacks but I feel it’s ok to take advantage of bad game implementation or geometry issues for a bit of fun as long as everyone’s laughing. I don’t really like cheap wins so eventually guilt gets the better of me.

  • Nah I never cheated. I never even took advantage of in-game exploits because I knew they’d eventually get patched out, so why bother relying on them.

    I was kinda gobsmacked when I saw a streamer actually streaming himself playing Starcraft 2 with a cheat/hack. Not only did it reveal the entire map so he could see what his opponent was doing at any given time (maphacks themselves are pretty common), it told him everything his opponent was doing – the structures and units they were building, whether they were loading into or dropping out of transports, when their upgrades finished. It was appalling – and extremely satisfying when he still lost to top level players despite those advantages.

  • I cheated back when WoW was new.
    Work hours etc… made playing with others difficult. I often found myself getting kicked from groups because I was essentially dead weight.
    So I wrote software to multi-box 5 accounts. Never did it to ‘cheat’ or try and get an unfair advantage.

  • I used to be a mod in a CnC Renegade community where we (the mods) would occasionally play private games together with whatever cheats we could find. The idea was to see how the cheats worked so we knew what to look for in game. I never found it particularly helpful though.

    … so I guess I have cheated, kind of, but for the greater good I swear!

  • Nope. Not in online or offline play.

    Have had hacks used against me though. Drove me up the wall.

    I can remember back in CoD2 MP days having one route for a CTF map that always got me to and from the flag without deaths. Only got killed a handful of times after the better players on the opposing team wised up to my movements and got me. But 90% of the time it worked.

  • Botted in games once I lost interest in the grind or game. Was more an exercise is scripting the botting engine (or writing my own) and seeing what it was capable of. A good learning experience if anything.

  • I did use a save game editor for Borderlands, but that was more to protect myself in online play.

    When playing online, any open quests the host had open that you hadn’t completed would be added to your own quest log. There was a buggy quest that existed in the game code but wouldn’t normally be handed out, but could be added to your log in this way if someone else had it. You wouldn’t be able to turn this quest in, and it would block you from progressing in the game.

    It probably entered the game by someone hacking their save, but would transmit virally between legitimate players. The best fix was to hack your own save file to mark the quest as completed: that way no one could infect your save, and you couldn’t pass it on to other people.

  • Cheat via code injection or bot. No.

    Cheated by exploiting game mechanics or developers lack of foresight… aka Cheese. Yes when I was younger but less nowadays as I am more invested in games and accounts.

    Ultima Online, Everquest, City of Heroes, Guild Wars, Star Trek Online… I gave exploited game mechanics and NPC item drops to gold farm and cheese boss fights to be overpowered. Got banned twice from Guild Wars and both times theydid it on suspicion I had too much gold without figuring where I farmed it… but the exploiting usually kicks in around 2 months after release when I get bored.

    Then I got invested in World, I didnt get bored and started to nature then… still had a few game master conversations about player complaints about me manipulating AH prices the first year the game was released.

    But yeah if I feel like I am burned out on a game… any exploit is fair game!

  • offline only, dont have time to grind anymore. like MGS5, i just gave myself lots of resources to get to higher tech bit faster

    • I think this is totally fine when games like MGS are programmed to just waste your time grinding for stuff that you need.

  • Yep, in the DayZ clone “WarZ”. Got an ESP to see how many people were really using it.

    Everyone was using it.

    • I ended up having to get cheats to even play dayz, I’d quickly switch on immunity any time someone tried the teleport and have everyone fall cheats, if they did the whole island teleport and everyone battles I was 50/50 on immunity for that.
      Then it was just a case of rekitting the squad for what was losed because of the hackers.

      • Haha I was pretty close to checking it out in DayZ but just gave up playing that POS. I would’ve been interested to see it in PUBG a few months back too but their cheating situation seems better now.

  • Yes, but not online: mainly in Pokemon. Main thing was just generating Pokemon, using RNG manipulation, or in the case of Diamond, Pearl and Platinum: using the “tweaking” glitch to go out of bounds and shiny hunt for a Shaymin. I don’t use any hacked Pokemon online, it’s mainly just for breeding for specific stuff.

  • Didn’t cheat. Just used the tools to host modded game mode lobbies in MW2 because I’d gotten bored with the steam version and AlterIWnet was much better. got banned from steam MW2 eventually.

  • Never cheated, but been accused of doing so many times. Why can’t people just accept that there are others better than them?

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