In a blog post from Team Ricochet, a group of anti-cheat specialists that work to keep cheaters out of Call of Duty, the team revealed some of the ways they mess with the cheaters they catch.
Known as ‘mitigation systems’, these often humorous features aim to keep cheaters playing long enough to collect data while minimising the effect these people have on players playing the game legitimately. As Ricochet points out, it also has the added effect of annoying them: “Cheaters, for some reason, feel superior using software to win games they have no business winning. Hitting them with mitigations transform those euphoric feelings of being fake-best into glorious pangs of annoyance. We’ve seen the clips.”
The first mitigation system is called Damage Shield. This system is identifiable by both cheaters and non-cheaters as the person getting shot by the cheater will see their health bar trickle down very slowly. This allows the player to identify where the cheater is and kill them effortlessly as they take very little damage in return. Karma.
The next system is called Cloaking. With cloaking, if the cheater lands a hit on a player then it causes that player to become invisible. It’s used as an anti “walling” technique, instead of being able to see everything through the walls of the map, they can suddenly see and hear nothing, making them easy targets.
Ricochet’s newest devilishly clever mitigation system is known as Disarm. This technique is simple. When a cheater is detected, their weapons, including fists, are taken away from them, preventing them from being able to do any damage.
Ricochet admits they have a “second somewhat secret mission to annoy as many cheaters as we can.” The post also spoke about the ebb and flow of anti-cheat systems, as cheaters change their tactics, Ricochet too must adapt to match them. While mitigation techniques are effective and produce amusing results, the main tool against cheaters is still large ban waves. Since April 26, Team Ricochet has issued over 180,000 bans across Warzone and Vanguard.
Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 will launch with Team Ricochet’s anti-cheat measures already in place, a prospect that excites the team.