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RE: I was sent this WARNING.....

 
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RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/18/2012 11:40:27 PM   
crsutton


Posts: 7344
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Cheat or exploit? Does not really matter? This is a sick puppy here. He has problems that go beyond the scope of this forum. We all have our slick tricks but there has to be a point where you put on the stops. I feel sorry for him in a way because it is obvious from his post that he really has no comprehension of doing anything wrong. So be it. I suspect that there are many aspects of his life that are not aligned with the planets.

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Sigismund of Luxemburg

(in reply to ilovestrategy)
Post #: 31
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/18/2012 11:48:57 PM   
Smeulders

 

Posts: 1878
Joined: 8/9/2009
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quote:

ORIGINAL: jwilkerson


quote:

ORIGINAL: sdhundt

**warning

if you are interessed i could tell you that **** is cheating. i have prove of it!!!!
he is increasing pilot exp an troop xp and if he need
he change TOE
it seems like he is hacking the savefiles like he need it**


This was sent to me on a different forum...I deleted the accused players name.....Could this be done by a very tech. smart player ? Just a word regarding the game against the accused player.......My pilot exp. is rising alarmingly slow and his pilots eat ALL my guys for breakfast but since I have nothing to compare it with I thought it wasn't a problem.....But recently I have started a game as the Japs.....SCN#2, just like the other game.....In that game my Jap. pilots don't come anywhere close to the domination that the first game has as the Jps.......I know this is almost imposable to figure out if cheating is going on....I am going to give the benefit of the doubt to my opponent....He is a VERY good player and I wouldn't find the game any fun if you had to change the Pilot exp. and other things just to win. Any comments would be of great interest to me, Thanks.



When it comes to security - there are no absolutes. So we cannot say the game is 100% crack proof. However, compared to WITP stock ... the WITP/AE security system is almost infinitely better.

Since part of a security system's ability to function is based on how it works being a secret - I will not further describe how WITP/AE security works. But I can say that I do not think any of us who worked on the project could successfully edit the save file in a meaningful way and we KNOW how the security works. Yes, you can see data in there ... but it is scrambled in multiple dimensions ...

General advice is ... if you don't trust your opponent ... don't play the game with them ... and this is true for any game .. poker ... monopoly ... chess ... Axis and Allies ... even little ole WITP/AE.

If you must play against people you don't know ... play a few shorter scenarios first to primarily make sure your playing styles and communication styles are compatible ... as well as trying to develop a mutual sense of trust ... BEFORE you dive in to a >1 year campaign game ...

... security is like a wall .... we can make it has high as our stake holders want us to make us ... but we cannot really make it infinitely high ... we made the WITP/AE wall much, much, much higher than the WITP stock wall ... but it is not infinitely high ...




I don't think anyone will be pointing fingers at the devs over this. Everyone here should be smart enough to understand that what you say is true, there is no way to make a fool proof protection. Many of us even post about our games openly, giving away various degrees of information that we know our opponents could read if they wanted to. I've heard about players exchanging passwords because sometimes one forgets to hit "end turn" on his save ... The save system certainly isn't the weakest link for many people here.

Actually we should be surprised about the limited number of cheaters we hear about. Either they're good at hiding it or we're a pretty lucky bunch.

(in reply to jwilkerson)
Post #: 32
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/18/2012 11:52:55 PM   
jetjockey


Posts: 248
Joined: 11/23/2009
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quote:

ORIGINAL: witp1951

My opponent just emailed me claiming he has not cheated but made use of the game engine. He has withdrawn from our game.

Edited: I have most of the save files if anyone at Matrix is interested they can PM me.


If your former opponent had been legitimately exploiting the game engine, I am certain he would just love to share with us his wisdom and superior insight. How else can he expect to clear his good name. Otherwise, I would believe that it will be difficult to find another opponent…

(in reply to witp1951)
Post #: 33
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 12:02:11 AM   
witp1951


Posts: 118
Joined: 12/2/2009
From: Tennessee
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quote:

ORIGINAL: jetjockey
If your former opponent had been legitimately exploiting the game engine, I am certain he would just love to share with us his wisdom and superior insight. How else can he expect to clear his good name. Otherwise, I would believe that it will be difficult to find another opponent…


I responded to him with that same request. Have not heard back.

Hell, this is just a game!

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Baka wa shinanakya naoranai

Dog

(in reply to jetjockey)
Post #: 34
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 12:06:33 AM   
nate25


Posts: 1391
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From: Fishers Indiana
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Kinda disconcerting for a newb trying to work up for PBEM.

I know a lot of you out there are IT types or very knowledgeable about computers. I'm what I'd call "illiterate".

Is there anything besides trusting your opp that can be done? Sort of a "trust but verify" thing?

Nate

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I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to jetjockey)
Post #: 35
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 12:15:20 AM   
dorjun driver


Posts: 641
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From: Port Townsend: hex 210,51
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Apparently not. More's the pity.

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 36
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 12:26:35 AM   
witpqs


Posts: 15107
Joined: 10/4/2004
From: Argleton
Status: online
quote:

ORIGINAL: nate25

Kinda disconcerting for a newb trying to work up for PBEM.

I know a lot of you out there are IT types or very knowledgeable about computers. I'm what I'd call "illiterate".

Is there anything besides trusting your opp that can be done? Sort of a "trust but verify" thing?

Nate


I have the impression that, if he did break the save file open, it was a really big deal to do so. Sort of like banks do get robbed, but they are still in business and people still keep money there. I'm not worried about it.

The plain fact is that you must have a good opponent who has integrity or else your game is going to stink regardless of whether it is possible to get into the save file or not. And if it were easy then the information about how would be here on the forum already so that everybody would be forewarned. Don't worry about this potential hack, spend the mental energy on developing relationships with good opponents.

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 37
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 12:28:45 AM   
crsutton


Posts: 7344
Joined: 12/6/2002
From: Maryland
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quote:

ORIGINAL: nate25

Kinda disconcerting for a newb trying to work up for PBEM.

I know a lot of you out there are IT types or very knowledgeable about computers. I'm what I'd call "illiterate".

Is there anything besides trusting your opp that can be done? Sort of a "trust but verify" thing?

Nate



I have been gaming for 40 years. Trust and respect have always been the key. This is not new. Don't worry. This is a pretty good crowd and you are at very little risk here.

_____________________________

I am the Holy Roman Emperor and am above grammar.

Sigismund of Luxemburg

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 38
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 12:41:46 AM   
nate25


Posts: 1391
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Fishers Indiana
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I agree, "trust is a must".

I supervise for a living and you can become just a tad shaded towards people if you let yourself. Then when I read this I thought, "Here, too?"

But, it's one individual (alledgedly). I've got nothing but help in reply to my questions on this forum so my overall impression won't change.

Nate


_____________________________

I have a subtle and cunning plan.

(in reply to crsutton)
Post #: 39
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 1:02:22 AM   
Historiker


Posts: 4742
Joined: 7/4/2007
From: Deutschland
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quote:

ORIGINAL: jetjockey


quote:

ORIGINAL: witp1951

My opponent just emailed me claiming he has not cheated but made use of the game engine. He has withdrawn from our game.

Edited: I have most of the save files if anyone at Matrix is interested they can PM me.


If your former opponent had been legitimately exploiting the game engine, I am certain he would just love to share with us his wisdom and superior insight. How else can he expect to clear his good name. Otherwise, I would believe that it will be difficult to find another opponent…

Quite a good bugfinder, this guy ;-)
- Supplies in masses where they shouldn't be
- Training units withing days to 99-99 - but only those units needed, not everyone
- 90XP Pilots for everyone

To find one loophole is difficult enough, but several?



BTW: He wipped my arse once as well, but was propably able to do so without any "loopholes" because it was my first pbem.

< Message edited by Historiker -- 3/19/2012 1:15:14 AM >


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Without any doubt: I am the spawn of evil - and the Bavarian Beer Monster (BBM)!

There's only one bad word and that's taxes. If any other word is good enough for sailors; it's good enough for you. - Ron Swanson

(in reply to jetjockey)
Post #: 40
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 1:24:56 AM   
n01487477


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This seems to go beyond a bug in the editor or loophole in the code. This seems to be a manipulation of the savefile through (actually - I shouldn't say)...

As someone who has worked in IT & helped code Tracker & Tracker AE - I can only reiterate JWilkerson. AE is much more protected than witp, but no system is impregnable.

So, it isn't impossible, but I would imagine very very rare for players here to be doing this. I trust my fellow players here and will continue to do so. Don't look for "cheats under the bed" in every bad result and good play by him/her.



_____________________________

-Damian-
EconDoc
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Tutes&Java

(in reply to Historiker)
Post #: 41
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 1:38:08 AM   
sdhundt

 

Posts: 300
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From: Milwaukee, WI, USA
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I learned a HUGE lesson by playing ROY....If the results seem WAY OFF then I know in the future to dig into it a little more....Sad to say I wasted 15 months by playing him....On the positive side, even while getting my ass kicked I stayed and played. Now off to restart a new game, UGH, but to restart after this long, UGH...Oh well maybe I'll take a break....TO ALL OF you players, all over the world, thanks to all of you for taking time to help me out with this very ugly topic...I didn't expect this much support, again, Thanks.

Steven

(in reply to n01487477)
Post #: 42
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 1:40:15 AM   
Mac Linehan

 

Posts: 1288
Joined: 12/19/2004
From: Denver Colorado
Status: online
quote:

ORIGINAL: nate25

Kinda disconcerting for a newb trying to work up for PBEM.

I know a lot of you out there are IT types or very knowledgeable about computers. I'm what I'd call "illiterate".

Is there anything besides trusting your opp that can be done? Sort of a "trust but verify" thing?

Nate


Nate -

It has been my privilege to associate with the AE and WitP forums since 2004. While there has been, on occasion, (sometimes heated!) disagreements by forum members on what is or is not "gamey", this alleged instance is the first time I have heard of anyone opening and editing a save game file.

My three (very short lengthed - time constraints) pbem games involved Men who were honorable, trustworthy and (above all!) patient with this newbie. In each case I sent my password to my opponent. Either a man measures up, or, as in golf, you never play him again.

And - as we can see first hand, it doesn't take long for the word to get around.

You are surrounded by very experienced gamers, who will usually give (polite) warning if you intend to start a pbem with a individual of questionable integrity. This is a very rare occurrence.

Please choose to be unaffected by this current controversy. We are glad that you have have chosen to join an exceptional group of Men (and Lady).

Mac

< Message edited by Mac Linehan -- 3/19/2012 1:43:33 AM >


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LAV-25 2147

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 43
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 2:29:55 AM   
Judith57

 

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I must say this player seem to have achieved a training level far beyond anything else I have ever seen. Strange

(in reply to witp1951)
Post #: 44
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 2:31:13 AM   
Cap Mandrake

 

Posts: 17035
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Does anyone know how much he charges for this?

(in reply to Mac Linehan)
Post #: 45
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 2:55:23 AM   
FDRLincoln


Posts: 742
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From: Lawrence, KS
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I have to wonder what kind of person gets emotional or intellectual satisfaction by rigging the game, which is pretty much what this amounts to.



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Post #: 46
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 3:22:24 AM   
sanch

 

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Actually, it isn't all that hard to reverse-engineer a data file format, having done so several times. As long as the data isn't encrypted, it is almost guaranteed that there will be patterns to the data. Once you begin to crack the patterns, it's downhill from there.

On the surface, it sounds to me like that is what this guy did. And once he figured the file format, then poking bytes to bump experience or whatever becomes almost trivial.

The caveat being, of course, what kind of protections the AE team put onto the files, such as checksums, byte encoding, or whatever. But, OTOH, that, too, is part of reverse-engineering.

(in reply to FDRLincoln)
Post #: 47
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 3:23:49 AM   
Dan Nichols


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Save files are encrypted.

(in reply to sanch)
Post #: 48
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 4:34:11 AM   
USS America


Posts: 16218
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From: Apex, NC, USA
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Cap Mandrake

Does anyone know how much he charges for this?




_____________________________

Mike

"Good times will set you free" - Jimmy Buffett

"They need more rum punch" - Me


Artwork by The Amazing Dixie

(in reply to Cap Mandrake)
Post #: 49
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 4:37:17 AM   
USS America


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From: Apex, NC, USA
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Sorry to hear that a few of you have lost games over this sad person. Perhaps you could start up a game against each other?

This is a class group of players that love this game, with very, very, very few sad exceptions. Keep the faith in your fellow players, and thank you for pointing out an exception to the rule for all of us.

_____________________________

Mike

"Good times will set you free" - Jimmy Buffett

"They need more rum punch" - Me


Artwork by The Amazing Dixie

(in reply to USS America)
Post #: 50
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 5:12:23 AM   
witpqs


Posts: 15107
Joined: 10/4/2004
From: Argleton
Status: online
quote:

ORIGINAL: sdhundt

I learned a HUGE lesson by playing ROY....If the results seem WAY OFF then I know in the future to dig into it a little more....Sad to say I wasted 15 months by playing him....On the positive side, even while getting my ass kicked I stayed and played. Now off to restart a new game, UGH, but to restart after this long, UGH...Oh well maybe I'll take a break....TO ALL OF you players, all over the world, thanks to all of you for taking time to help me out with this very ugly topic...I didn't expect this much support, again, Thanks.

Steven



There's a silver lining to every dark cloud...

Now you can start a PBM using DaBabes, extended map, optional stacking limits. I recommend Scenario 28-C, the one with the reduced cargo capacities as that pushes the constraints a little more toward reality. And no matter which version you choose DaBabes has a phenomenol number of fixes, refinements, and improvements.

Get even by living well!

(in reply to sdhundt)
Post #: 51
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 6:23:41 AM   
Torplexed


Posts: 216
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From: The Pacific
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He's cheating while playing as the Allies? What? All the material and technological advantages that accumulate over time aren't already enough?

< Message edited by Torplexed -- 3/19/2012 6:26:32 AM >


_____________________________


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Post #: 52
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 7:45:33 AM   
LoBaron


Posts: 4609
Joined: 1/26/2003
From: Vienna, Austria
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: nate25

I agree, "trust is a must".

I supervise for a living and you can become just a tad shaded towards people if you let yourself. Then when I read this I thought, "Here, too?"

But, it's one individual (alledgedly). I've got nothing but help in reply to my questions on this forum so my overall impression won't change.

Nate




It is a single individual, to estimate the ammount of trust people put into each other you only need to go to the AAR section.
While this is off as a single event I very much doubt comparable things happen on a regular basis. No worries.


_____________________________

S**t happens in war.

All hail the superior ones!

(in reply to nate25)
Post #: 53
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 8:06:25 AM   
JeffK


Posts: 5217
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From: Back in the Office, Can I get my tin hut back!
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I thought that if a database was changed you got a warning and had to agree?

Of course he could have timed his fix to come in with a Patch or similar to camoflague this.

From memory, someone brought up this possibility in early AE days and was jumped upon.

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Interdum feror cupidine partium magnarum Europae vincendarum

(in reply to LoBaron)
Post #: 54
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 8:25:39 AM   
Smeulders

 

Posts: 1878
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quote:

ORIGINAL: USS America


quote:

ORIGINAL: Cap Mandrake

Does anyone know how much he charges for this?





I've heard it whispered he always wanted a golf course resort, you don't happen to have one of those lying around ?

(in reply to USS America)
Post #: 55
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 8:26:49 AM   
Smeulders

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JeffK

I thought that if a database was changed you got a warning and had to agree?

Of course he could have timed his fix to come in with a Patch or similar to camoflague this.

From memory, someone brought up this possibility in early AE days and was jumped upon.


It doesn't look like a database change, but rather changes to morale, experience and number of devices in a unit, the sort of thing that changes every turn in the game.

(in reply to JeffK)
Post #: 56
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 9:29:37 AM   
Commander Cody


Posts: 878
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From: Seoul, Korea
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Cap Mandrake:

Actually, this is quite disturbing behavior. 99XP Chinese units? 90XP pilots with 1-3 missions under their belts? Not in this lifetime.

Cheers,
CC

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Beer, because barley makes lousy bread.

(in reply to Smeulders)
Post #: 57
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 10:58:03 AM   
Empire101


Posts: 1962
Joined: 5/20/2008
From: Coruscant
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quote:

ORIGINAL: ilovestrategy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Commander Stormwolf


only an idiot would cheat at a game where there is no money involved

.. and even then.. don't recommend it



Words of wisdom right here.


Indeed they are, but we must all remember there are people out there who will go to ANY lengths to get one over their opponent ( or should I say victim ).

quote:

ORIGINAL:jwilkerson

General advice is ... if you don't trust your opponent ... don't play the game with them



More words of wisdom

_____________________________

Our lives may be more boring than those who lived in apocalyptic times,
but being bored is greatly preferable to being prematurely dead because of some ideological fantasy.
- Michael Burleigh


(in reply to ilovestrategy)
Post #: 58
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 11:05:32 AM   
David The Great

 

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Could his member name be made public, so people do not waste time starting up a game with this person.

Thx

David

(in reply to Commander Cody)
Post #: 59
RE: I was sent this WARNING..... - 3/19/2012 11:30:42 AM   
michaelm


Posts: 9384
Joined: 5/5/2001
From: Sydney, Australia
Status: offline
quote:

..but made use of the game engine.


If there is indeed an exploit within the game that can manipulate the mentioned data, and it can be identified, I can try to fix it. But I can't if I don't know there is one.


_____________________________

Michael

(in reply to David The Great)
Post #: 60
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