Using cheat codes in video games may seem like cheating, but many gamers have figured out how to elevate their gaming experience by using these hidden shortcuts. Cheat codes are often embedded in the games by the game creators themselves, and can be accessed by typing in specific commands in search engines. These codes allow players to skip over boring parts of the game, or just add some fun to an otherwise mundane experience.
Gamers have been finding ways to cut corners since the first video game was invented. In the early days of video games, cheating was a common practice among coders who were trying to figure out how to beat their favorite games. Over time, the technology for games evolved, and coders were able to take their skills to new heights by simply altering code in the games. Now, cheats are so easy to use that the majority of gamers don’t even think twice about their actions.
Most people don’t consider it cheating to jump ahead in the game, and even some gamers who are not competitive feel the urge to cheat once in a while. But there is a line between cheating for fun and cheating to gain an unfair advantage over other players. Cheating to jump ahead in the game can ruin the entire gaming experience, and is a clear violation of fair play rules.
Cheats are implemented by modifying the game software, which is against most End User License Agreements (EULAs) forbidding modification. Generally, a cheat modifies the game data file to bypass game protection systems and other security features. Some cheats modify underlying system components, such as graphics drivers. This allows the cheat to bypass protections by changing how the game displays information on the screen–for example, by ignoring depth checking and drawing everything on the screen at once.
When a game updates, the cheats can be rendered useless, and some developers make the effort to block these loopholes in their games. But it’s hard to prevent cheaters from finding other ways to circumvent game security, and they can spread these cheats online.
Some cheaters develop their own codes, and they can be extremely sophisticated. For instance, a camera hack can provide the cheater with a wider field of view than was intended by the developer. ESP hacks can reveal on-screen visuals, such as the locations of opponents or power-ups. Lag switches can delay an opponent’s action, and drop hacks can disconnect an opponent to make the cheater’s gameplay easier.
While the gaming industry can’t stop gamers from developing their own cheats, they can try to close these loopholes in their games with regular updates that roll out over the Internet. This can make it more difficult for cheaters to find the bugs that they can exploit, and it will also help attract honest players to a game with better anti-cheat protections. As the gaming industry moves toward games that are not solely sold as physical products, the integrity of a game’s reputation is an increasingly important factor to consider when choosing where to invest time and money.