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Star Citizen cheaters face permaban with no refund (but CIG needs video evidence)

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I have no doubt that you will be shocked—shocked—to learn that the rollout of the Star Citizen 2.6 alpha, which includes the Star Marine FPS module, has led to reports of cheating. Some people just can't help themselves, I guess. Fortunately, developer Cloud Imperium Games has a "zero tolerance policy" for such shenanigans, as it said in response to one player complaint, and that people caught cheating will be given the perma-boot, with no refund. But complicating the situation somewhat is that for now, the studio requires that reports of cheating be accompanied by video evidence. 

As PCGamesN points out, the problem is that not everyone has access to video capture setups, and those who do won't necessarily have them running when they fall victim to cheaters. It's not like you can ask them to smile and hold a pose while you capture your evidence, right? But CIG developer TylerN posted a follow-up message explaining that it's still early days for the anti-cheating effort, and the request for video evidence was made not only to back up claims, but also to help it come up with better anti-cheating tools. 

"Cheat prevention in Star Citizen and Squadron 42 is a priority for us, and we have gathered lots of feedback from internal and external sources since the initial release of Star Marine. Rest assured, we have already begun banning violators as well as working on short-term, and long-term solutions for preventing the use of 3rd party programs," he wrote. "Requesting video evidence helps us achieve a few things—It substantiates claims made by players, which we compare with our internal data, and it helps us improve the functionality of our tools to better combat cheaters proactively." 

It's a high burden of proof, then, but also a severe punishment for those caught behaving badly. I think that's a reasonable approach: As an alpha, Star Citizen is surely still too rough around the edges to rely too heavily on automated system, but alpha "testers" who are more interested in dicking around with the system to score a win aren't doing anyone any good.   

TylerN added that feedback from the thread will be forwarded "to the appropriate party so that our messaging is more clear going forward."

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.