Producer's Letter: All About Cheating

Posted by John Thornhill | 2016 Jan 19 14:51 -0500 GMT

Friends and realmmates, 

Brace yourselves, new-anti-cheat-policies are coming! ...Err they're here. The New-Anti-Cheat-Policies. Are. Here. 

Read below for more details!

I wanted to take the time to update you all on our last several months' efforts to combat some different types of cheats in-game as well as announce our upcoming enforcement plans and policies for other types of cheats and violations going forward.

Since our last anti-cheat pass in August, we've been hard at work tweaking things and ensuring that our mechanisms in place are as air-tight as can be. As such, we're happy (and also disappointed in those that still think this behavior is okay) to announce that another few hundred accounts have been issued suspensions for use of radar/map hacks, third-party program hacks, and/or speedhacks. We were happy to see that the number of accounts issued suspensions was less than half of the number from the first pass, with relatively few repeat offenders; however it appears we still have a way to go before the rest of these cheaters get the message.

As such, we have issued suspensions ranging from 3 days for minimal usage and first time offenses to 7 days for extreme usage and 2nd time offenses with 5 day suspensions levied inbetween.

All accounts actioned today have been sent an email to the address on file.

If you received this email, and do not use these programs, check the name of the suspended account carefully before you panic. If you sold or traded your account to another player, it’s possible that they didn’t change the contact email information.

If you did not receive this email, but your account has been suspended, you should update the email address on the account ASAP.

If it’s your account, and you received the email, please uninstall your third party programs immediately.

For those that think we will stop here, think again. Rest assured we'll be doing another pass at some point in the future and if you cheat you Will. Be. Caught.

With that out of the way, we have one big announcement to make in our enforcement policy as well as some other, and still important!, general policy updates.

First, the big announcement:

Going forward, we will be heavily enforcing and removing any "macro groups" found in the Frontiers or battleground regions but will now be allowing non-trial "macro groups" in PvE areas. We will be starting off with issuing written warnings to ALL, non-trial, accounts that are detected using macro programs to simultaneously control multiple characters at once that are found in these areas. This is to give those accounts a chance to logout or immediately leave the regions. If accounts are found in a "macro group" in those regions again they will be suspended and eventually permanently terminated if they continue to venture there. Trial account "macro groups" will be immediately terminated, wherever they are found.

In addition to our new mechanisms put in place that help us verify "macro groups," this is a change in enforcement policy that we hope will greatly help the integrity and fun of RvR. For now, non-trial account "macro groups" will be allowed to exist in PvE zones and PvE/RvR zones such as Darkness Falls, Celestius, and Labyrinth. "Macro groups" already in Passage of Conflict or Summoner's Hall will be left alone as well but be warned that venturing through the frontiers to those dungeons will put your accounts at high risk to be actioned.

Due to our resources and based on player feedback, we feel this is the right first step to better combat "macro groups". We will certainly be keeping a close eye on things and revisiting this policy if need be. This policy should draw a clear line in the sand so that everyone knows what is and is not a violation when it comes to these "macro groups." Please note that this policy change is only going forward; we will not be retroactively removing previously applied violations on accounts that were caught. If you see a "macro group" in the frontiers or a battleground, please file an appeal (or take a screenshot and email it and the character names to and they will be taken care of.

To file a proper violation appeal, use the following syntax:
/appeal Violation: I witnessed <character-server name(s)> operating a macro group in the frontiers.

Appeals without the character-server name or proper information make it that much harder for our support team to investigate in a timely manner.

In general, we have some other important policy changes to announce. These changes will not be updated into the existing Rules of Conduct in the event that the policies need to be changed or enforced differently in the future. The current Rules of Conduct gives us the proper flexibility to enforce violations that may make use of the now-allowed software/hardware but go beyond the scope of what we'd intended. As such, please use the guidelines in this letter as our new enforcement policy (for the issues stated here) until otherwise updated; though understand that we can enforce based on the existing Rules of Conduct when it is so desired or necessary.

1) We will now accept player-provided evidence such as screenshots and videos for players that you feel are violating our RoC. All screenshots and videos (or links to them on forums) should be emailed to us at Please note that this evidence will not be the sole cause of any action given against an account but will be used to supplement our investigations.
2) We will no longer be enforcing against multi-keybind software or hardware that allow for multiple actions per keystroke per character. An example would be setting up a 'macro' that allows your "w key" to cast both disease and a heal spell. This is a common feature on most gaming keyboards and mice and is something we'd like to add native support for in-game in the future. In effect, using this hardware or software will no longer be a violation.
3) Caught realm point farmers will now lose a commensurate amount of realm points earned, depending on the severity of the farming, in addition to their account being suspended from the game. Terminated accounts will lose ALL RPs on the characters that were RP farming; this is in the event that that account is ever given a one-time reprieve and allowed back to the game in the future.

Thank you for your time and we hope that these new policies show our commitment to stamping out cheating of any-kind in our game while transitioning to a more mordern approach; on the whole we feel that these changes will make for a more positive and fun in-game experience for all. Stay tuned for more updates on our development plans this year, in the coming weeks!


-John Thornhill