The Evolution of Games Cheats and Hacks

Video games are a multibillion-dollar industry and like other competitive pastimes, cheating isn’t uncommon. There are countless YouTube videos showing players teleporting around the map, shooting through walls, and racking up endless killstreaks. These cheaters are not only frustrating for legitimate gamers, but they’re also causing copyright issues for video game developers.

Cheating in games may seem like a 20th-century holdover, but hackers are still able to exploit the underlying code and memory to give themselves an unfair advantage in multiplayer games. This has caused game developers to start implementing these cheats more and more deliberately in their titles, as they want to make sure that the gameplay experience is fair for everyone.

There are many reasons why people decide to create cheats and hacks for a game. Some people do it for the thrill of it, while others do it to test their skills against other hackers. It is a highly technical and complex job to create this kind of software, as you have to be able to understand how a video game’s code works, while also making it so that security defences don’t detect it as malicious.

In the early days of video games, there were plugin devices like Game Genie, which allowed users to edit the contents of a game’s program memory prior to it booting up. This was technically a form of cheating, but it was hidden behind a user-friendly interface. These types of cheats were more common in the ’80s and ’90s, when gaming had become downright popular. Magazines like Nintendo Power launched with a fervor and were full of tips and tricks for the day’s most popular titles, and a hotline that gave players direct phone help from professional gaming advisors.

As gaming became more advanced, it’s become harder and harder to hide these kinds of exploits. This is largely due to the fact that games are now run on multiple different hardware platforms, and each one has its own set of programming languages and tools. Hacks that work on one platform won’t necessarily work on another, and developers are constantly testing and retesting their games to ensure that they can deliver the same experience across all platforms.

However, as technology advances and gaming continues to grow, it’s possible that there will come a time when video game cheats will be impossible to hide. Already, there are companies working on systems that can spoof player location and other information on consoles to prevent these types of cheats. Whether these will be successful remains to be seen, but it’s clear that there is a demand for them. There is a fine line between cheating for fun and cheating to gain an unfair advantage, and it’s up to the individual gamers to determine which side they’re on. This article was written by a member of the AI Business editorial team.