Apex Legends cheaters and spammers are being matched against each other

(Image credit: Respawn Entertainment)

Respawn Entertainment recently shared some information into what it's doing to combat the ever-present problem of cheating in Apex Legends. The new "Check-In," posted to Reddit, is light on specifics, but it reveals some big-picture insights into what's being done to check people who are more interested in winning than in how they play the game.

Developers are "using machine learning to create behavior models that detect and auto ban cheaters," Respawn wrote, and working to improve their ability to detect and ban spam accounts before they're used. Two-factor authorization will be required (or may already be required) on high-risk accounts in some regions, and of course Respawn is continuing to work on its ability to detect new cheats going forward.

The most interesting (and also specific) point, though, is that Respawn is matching up detected cheaters and spammers so they're forced to play against each other in matches. It's a bit like, "If you can't 'em, join 'em," except instead of joining them you're bonking their heads together like coconuts and locking them in a closet. Until cheating is completely stamped out (and let's be honest, that's never going to happen), this is a strategy I can get behind.

Interestingly, Respawn also warned that it's also looking into how people are teaming up for matches, apparently with an eye to catching people trying to get by on the letter of the law, rather than its spirit. "Even if you are not specifically using a cheat, partying up with cheaters is still cheating," it wrote.

"As we’ve said before, the war against cheaters will be ongoing and remains a high priority for us. There will always be work to do, improvements to make, and new things to adapt to," Respawn wrote. "We’d like to thank the players that have been getting involved with helping us squash cheaters over the last week whether it be submitting reports or assisting with the vetting process for suspicious behavior."

The update also touches on changes to the Apex dev tracker, in particular the Code: Leaf/Net timeout errors (which apparently aren't actually timeout errors, but look like them), which Respawn is continuing to investigate. The second of two Apex Legends skins being offered to Twitch Prime subscribers—Dino Dynamo Bangalore—is now available, and a new patch is currently in the works and expected to go live next week.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.