The topic of cheating in Pokémon GO has been a hot one over the past week or so as Niantic attempts to deal with the hordes of players who are seeking a means of getting an unfair advantage in the game, but it would seem that the automatic measures put in place by the developer can be a little overzealous.
Take the case of superfan Jimmy Derocher, who decided that he would attempt to acquire one million XP in a single day. Derocher had already proved that it was possible to gain that much XP in a weekend, and was keen to see if it were possible to do the same within the space of 24 hours.
Derocher's plan involved hitting a series of Pokéstops in a 0.2 mile loop, and he stated that he would livestream the attempt via Twitch. The news quickly spread and hundreds of other players stated that they would like to be involved via Facebook; all were keen not only to see if Derocher could pull it off, but to know if it were indeed possible to amass such a large amount of XP in the space of a single day.
To begin with, things went according to plan. However, by the time Derocher reached the 13th hour of his epic quest, Niantic's anti-cheat countermeasures kicked in. Every monster that Derocher encountered ran away from him - but not before he had collected around 600,000 XP.
According to Derocher, this is Niantic's way of stopping cheaters from grabbing more XP than they should, and is best described as a "soft ban" as it only lasts 24 hours. However, despite the temporary nature of the ban, he feels the system is unfair to those who want to play by the rules:
In a sense I was trying to prove to Niantic that their limit was actually hurting players who play efficiently. I'm a bit of a hardcore gamer and I play somewhat efficiently, but the point is that I shouldn't be hitting a 24 hr ban limit in just over half that time. Bots are far more efficient than humans are, and I think the effective soft ban was put in haphazardly...hurting a lot more players than I think they expected.
Games are meant to be played, and in my opinion played well.
On the bright side, Derocher's attempt had a dual purpose - to raise money for charity:
I logged 25 miles using the app Charity Miles, and we'll be able to donate $50-60 to charity thanks to stream donations, [But] we easily could've seen 1.5x that mileage and 5-10x the charity donations given...a full stream. I was still able to spin Pokestops [after getting softbanned]...I [also got] 25 XP from a mon running away. People laughed on stream because I continued to play for over an hour and a half getting something like 25k experience.
It remains to be seen if Niantic will change its system in the light of Derocher's noble attempt, but it has recently been dealing with cheaters in the most drastic way possible - terminating their accounts entirely and wiping all progress.
I don't really see this as specifically anti-cheating, but more like anti-unfair advantage.
Anyone who is in a position where they could earn that much experience in a single day clearly has an unfair advantage over those of us who cannot, no matter how excessively we play.
I do understand.
This case looks similar with Online games issues.
A lot of people use 'BOT' program to 'play' the game without being played by themself and exploit the hack and cheating.
Well, the games created for playing purpose, not being used for nasty purpose such as cheating, hacking and any kind of illegal activities. Some people need take a cold shower to refresh their brain from all illegal activities.
But... why? I like Pokemon GO, but I prefer everything else Pokemon far more than to play it for hours and hours each day.
"Games are meant to be played, and in my opinion played well"
This guy sounds a little too hardcore for his own good. Like, why would you waste your time trying to prove this to Niantic? Most people would never attempt to do this. All this guy proved is that he's got too much free time on his hands, and he comes across as yet another arrogant gamer with the attitude that ya gotta play games well or not at all. Opinion or no opinion, it still sounds fairly arrogant.
"Games are meant to be played, and in my opinion played well."
Playing well is irrelevant, enjoying oneself is what is important
Played well = play solidly for 13 hours (more if they woulda let him!) Erm...nah, that dog don't hunt. Still, brilliant charity work
@DragonEleven that's an interesting perspective, do you mean it's unfair because he had access to a loop of pokestops or because he had the time available to him to do it?
Gen 1 strikes again!
@Lucina You read the bit about him doing this for charity, right?
This man is a hero to efficiency warriors everywhere. I salute him.
@Damo Still doesn't excuse the fact that he came across as incredibly arrogant. Charity or no charity, that doesn't hide ones ego.
@Kid_Sickarus Mainly the loop thing... you can only do that sort of thing if you have access to a loop of stops like that, but most of us don't have a location like that that's within reasonable travelling distance... we have no control over that.
Time on the other hand we do have control of, and we could technically spend as much time as we wanted playing the game... that's the point of the last bit in my previous comment... no matter how long we spend or how intensively we play, without a loop of stops like that we'd never be able to gain experience at that sort of speed.
He's clearly lucky enough to have access to a loop like that, but for me he's moved from playing for the fun of it, through hard-core gamer into the realms of "Gamer with an issue". If I wanted I can create a loop of 17 stops within a 5-10 minute walk (my pace and the damn GPS actually tracking me properly), but I'd never consider doing what he did (except maybe for charity).
On his comment "Games are meant to be played, and in my opinion played well." I'm in two minds - I can see why it comes across as arrogance and I do think that games should be inclusive to all, but I equally don't think you should be held back or restricted if you happen to be better at it than others, while playing within the rules and constraints of the game...
Playing a game for 10+ hours straight as never been and will never considered a normal way to play. He's already at limit of abuse.
We have that kind of maniacs on every MMO. They are hurting the community than the other way around, actually.
My phone battery and paltry online allowance doesn't let me do more than about 20 mins a day.
If an anti-cheat mechanism can affect legitimate users then it's badly designed regardless of whether or not the player is doing something insane.
@crimsontadpoles yeah this is not about what's a hardcore gamer, o if said hardcore gamer is playing games the "right or wrong" way.
This is about the pokemon go flawed anti-cheat system...
I don't detect the same arrogance out of his comment. I think he simply finds fun in trying to play a game to the best of his ability, much like speed runners. I highly doubt that he expects every Pokemon GO player to find a loop with multiple Pokestops and race around it like he is. To go with the speed runner comparison, the current system Niantic is employing would be like making a game purposefully lock up if a speedrunner was progressing through the game faster than the developers thought was possible. It's nothing but a cap, and is punishing legitimate and highly dedicated players.
Maybe it's just there to ensure people live a normal life? In any case I doubt many people will be affected by these measures
@shaneoh @Lucina I think that he probably enjoys himself by playing games well (at least that's what I think). Personally, I don't agree with his opinion, but if it makes him happy, I'd let him do as he pleases (even if it comes off as arrogant).
I don't get what everyone is so worked up about. If you happen to live near a bunch of pokestops and have a lot of free time/money on your hands, what's the harm in doing something like this? He's not telling others to play like that, it's just him setting a challenge for himself and seeing if he can accomplish it. He's not using any cheats or external websites for this, just what the game lets him do. Are people not allowed to speedrun or try to beat high scores?
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