stopping/curbing the use of alts/bots?

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by polishpimp, May 4, 2012.

  1. polishpimp

    polishpimp Well-Known Member

    Alt use is obviously a huge problem that needs to be taken care of. There has been countless threads and discussions on the matter...none of which even come close to solving the problem, in fact most of the ideas at this point would seemingly promote or at the very least give the cheats more reason to do so. Many ideas have also been offered that just simply involve way to many limits and or restrictions that take away from the legitimate players gaming experience and actually hampers some of the earned advantages one gains from dedicating time and/or monies towards building a legitimate high leveed account.

    Kano has stated numerous times that alt use can be very difficult to detect and prove, they claim they have new tech that will help them in doing so, they have also said that it takes a large amount of resources to do so but have promised that they have and will be dedicating more of the resources to doing so. I for one applaud Kano for moving closer to what its gonna take to eliminate the scourge of alt use.

    I guess we as players have to ask ourselves....whats really important to us? Kano has long been known for their innovative game design, artwork and listening to their players/customers. Obviously these things take the lions share of the companies resources. Are you as player willing to sacrifice in these areas in order for Kano to designate more of their resources to to stopping bot and alt use? I certainly am! With all the great thing Kano and its games have to has become overshadowed by all the cheating and the he said she said BS of unfounded accusations.

    Im not a big computer guy...I actually know very little about them. When I first started playing I had to google to find out what the hell a bot/script or an alt was. I did the same to find out the diff between a URL and an IP address. My exposure to game apps was minimal at best yet through trial and error, and few friends was able to figure things out well enough that Ive gone on to enjoy a few successes with Kano games despite all the cheaters, whiners and accusers. What Ive seen happening lately is just a crying shame, although well intended ....the answer to these problems have had an even more negative affect...which is that the game has become so limiting that it has robbed or will rob each and every player of the best possible gaming experience they can letting them do what they want with their own accounts within the rules and enjoying the advantages of building a stronger account affords. How many of these BS limits/restrictions could be eliminated if we got rid of the cheats?

    Is there really the technology out there that will allow Kano to catch and ban all the alts and bot users? Ive been searching around the web and there is ways for people to have multiple IP addresses on one computer. I couldnt understand half of it....but Im sure there are more than a few tech savy individuals playing these games. How do u address multiple friends or family members using the same computer? I would guess that kano has a pretty darn good idea of who is using alts in a malicious manner but i would also guess that they have a problem with freezing and or banning many because their just isnt 100% indisputable proof. I would think that the last thing Kano would want to do is freeze or ban an innocent customer mistakenly. Honestly......they only way u could detect and eliminate every last cheat would be to have a Kano employee standing behind each player and them physically seeing them cheat with their own eyes. sorry....but I just dont see that happening anytime soon.

    Maybe the answer isnt with technology or limits and restrictions, maybe the answer is that we as players need to be willing to sacrifice a bit so more resources resources can be allocated towards a 24/7 Kano support and a verification system. Most if not all players have a phone . What if upon registering your account initially you had to submit your phone number (each number must be unique to each account)and answers to a few security questions. If and when a player suspected you of using a bot or an alt they could call or email the 24/7 Kano support and make a report. The Kano support team (could then call the accused/ player and have them answer the security questions and then have them perform a few random in-game actions while still on the phone. If the player cant be reached or fails t answer the questions correctly and or doesnt perform the random actions....their accounts would be frozen for a certain amount of time determined by Kano. Additional offences would eventually end up in a permanent ban.

    Sure....some people have multiple phones (but they most likely dont have (50) but If a player reports player (a) and player (B) for suspected bot or alt use.....all kano would have to do is call them both at the same time. Would this be an inconvenience for the player? Perhaps a minor one....but then again u r just sitting in front of your PC right? So what if its a minor inconvenience....your tired of all the cheating right? Then ask yourself.....are u willing to make a small sacrifice to end it? If not....maybe the cheating really isnt that big of a deal after all.

    What about those who dont have a phone? well than unfortunately u wouldnt be able to play Kano games.

    Kano has stated many times that they get a ton of reports about bots and alts, obviously they wouldnt be able to get to all of them at once. They could set up a system that prioritizes reports. If a player is getting more report than others, than perhaps that person should be checked first, similarly if Kano already suspects that person of using bots or alts. A similar system could be used if a player is found to be filing an usual amount of reports that r not found to be true.

    Obviously a system such as this would take dedicated resources. Are u willing to have Kano take a step back in some areas in which they currently excel to stem the the use of bot/alt use? I am! I hate cheaters, I hate people that accuse others in order to deflect attention from themselves, I hate that players find great pleasure in attempting to damage ones character simply because they have none of their own. How about you?

    My thoughts here are just that...thoughts. Whether they needs to be fine tuned or completely unrealistic ....thats fine. I think u get the idea, something drastic needs to be done if we r to ever eliminate the cheats. I for one dont mind a lil inconvenience to insure would sure beat the hell outta more band aid fixes that take away from the game or r make the problem worse.

    To simplify things heres an example.....

    Player (a) has a high level account and he wants to keep it moving forward as quickly as possible to keep the wolves at bay. But his problem is that he leaves his main residence for his vacation home nearly every weekend. He doesnt have access to the internet for whatever reason at his vacation home. So player (a) gives his log in info to player (b) so (b) can continue leveling his account while he is away. Player (c) then comes along on Saturday and sees that player (a)s account is actively playing and thinks to himself.....hmmmm...thats odd...player (A) has told me and numerous others that he goes away for the weekends and doesnt have internet access. Player (c) then decides to watch player (a)s account and engages them in battle and notices that player (a) is playing much differently than normal. Come monday player (c) once again engages player (a) in battle and notices that player (a) is back to his normal playing style. This goes on for months....and Player (c) notices the same pattern the entire time. Player (c) suspects that Player (a) is having player(b) play his account while hes away so he reports his suspicions to Kano. Kano calls player (a)s registered phone number. Under this scenario a few things might happen....

    1. player answers the phone answers the security questions and then performs the few simple in-game tasks in his account. Kano apologizes for the inconvenience , thanks them for their patronage . No harm no foul

    2. player (a) answers the phone but cant perform the tasks asked of him. Kano tells him that his account is currently being played and advises him that his account is being suspend for alt use.

    3. player (a) doesnt answer the phone (account still active), kano trys calling a few more answer. Kano then temp suspends the account until they here from player (a). The eventually hear from player (a) and they give them a a plausible excuse for not answering their phone. Kano lifts the account suspension....but player (a) moves higher up the priority list

    There are many more scenarios....that could play out, If u wish...please raise them here and I will do my best to address them. Ty for taking the time to read my post. Feel free to poke holes, offer improvements, or suggest your own ideas. The whole point of this thread is to rid the scourge of botn alt use....if u truly want to do the same ....WELCOME
  2. Smack

    Smack Kano Krusader

    Thanks for the post polishpimp, you have clearly put a lot of thought into this.

    As great as it would be to confirm via phone or other method that these people are who they say they are it is just not feasible for multiple reasons. One is the cost of setting up and maintaining such a system.

    But to the heart of the matter regarding the banning of Alt/Bot accounts, we are actively trying to weed these players out but please appreciate the time and resources this takes. We do not take banning lightly so we do our very best to confirm that each and every case is legitimate which puts a strain on our manpower here. Having said that we have recently discussed publishing some info around the bans we are doing to our TGIF posts. I cannot promise anything but it is possible we will call out how many accts were banned that week.

    I share your frustration with these Alts and Bots. These players dilute our games and is not very fun cleanup after. Unfortunately it is a reality and there will always be people playing multiple accounts and/or utilizing bots. I am not saying that as an excuse to roll over on this issue but it is an uphill battle at times trying to contain them all and we are trying!
  3. polishpimp

    polishpimp Well-Known Member

    Hey smack. I appreciate your reply.

    This post was no way intended as a slam on Kano or even directed at them, I honestly believe that u guys know what a menace these accounts are and that u guys r actively working on the issue. I may not understand all the complexities of a venture such as this....but I certainly can appreciate that calling it a daunting task would be a complete and utter understatement. I also realized that An idea such as I briefly outlined here was pretty unrealistic as far as resources. More than anything it was a challenge to the players to take a little responsibility for themselves and to think ideas thru a little further. I dont think most players including myself fully understand what a delicate balancing act these games really are, one seemingly simple lil tweak here or there can turn a ripple into a wave fairly quickly across the pond. Players (myself included)are quick to think their ideas would be a simple fix when in reality its detrimental to some other segment of the player population. I get a lot of grief for shooting down ideas here in the forums but im all good with that because I know that Im taking the extra steps necessary by playing devils advocate and pointing out potential pitfalls b4 everybody gets all gung ho about an idea that is ill fated from the onset. sometimes I get a bit carried away.....but it sure as hell isnt because i dont care about these games. Ive played them for a long time, spent a few bucks and enjoyed some successes.....the last thing I want to see is for them to go down the toilet.

    To get back on point.....I appreciate your efforts and look forward to the results. I like the idea of calling out how many have been banned each week....hope it happens. In addition to that I think it would be great if u guys could put an end to some of the player accusations and rumors that u guys must know are absolutely not true. I Suppose it might be just as difficult to prove someone 100% innocent as it would be to prove them 100% guilty.....but surely there are some players accusations and rumors out there u confident enough about to give em a shout out. For example...If there was a player that is constantly being reported or publicly accused of being a bot user.....yet you guys have looked into it and never saw any evidence.....Then say it here in the forums, Talk about showing the love and supportn those that make Kano happen....something like that might go a loooong way. take it easy and thanks again.
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  4. diva of destruction

    diva of destruction Active Member

    I just appreciate the dang thought! Especially the part about players attacking other's characters, since they don't have any! I know that Kano cares, and will do what they can with this Huge Problem. but to us players with one account only, trying to play a fair game, it is Extremely frustrating. :(((
  5. 1000

    1000 Member

    What will appen to the TOP 30 player, to everyone, if all 2acc get banned??? Attack each other? 4the TOP player if he find one day the 2acc frozen. Leveling up will be hard if not impossible... Then, after 2years you will find many players on the same level or close.
  6. polishpimp

    polishpimp Well-Known Member

    Wouldnt that be great if every player only had 1 account and they had to actually advance on their own againt those who already have been? I wouldnt be to concerned that all players would be around the same level though....those who need to cheat do it because they cant compete by honest means, hence the reason they cheat.
  7. Linda

    Linda Guest

    Top Poster Of Month

    as far as leaderboards, big whoop and anyone who got there by any other means than the way the games is meant to be played , should not be on said leaderboard .
  8. 1000

    1000 Member

    looool, I see your view, and for sure is great :)) but it will also be boring... an Acc with 2000 stam etc... after finish the battle list, and the boss... where he going to spend the stam? and, some lvl on FB are too big.... that mean, empty battle list. at my Level: 833, I find alredy boring to play a click game. after I finish the battle list, I have to come tomorrow for a short action... there is no point in get the game boring. the game will stagnate and everyone will notice... even you will notice just after 1year after all the ban......
    The hunter needs the dog for help him
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  9. Ideally, no alts or bot use would be nirvana......but I don't believe that would be the case. It seems already that there are fewer and fewer players. I would like to make a proposal, not sure if it's feasible.

    Just a short comment first. When I first started playing VC, I had never played a game such as this. It was exciting to say the least, but I had NO idea what I was doing. I got lucky, imo, and built my account pretty solid. Of course, I met good people who helped me. (Thank you Eric, Eddie and Polish). But I can certainly see why someone, upon reaching level 2500 might want to start over with a level 1 and build that account differently than they did their first one.

    So, here is what I think. Upon reaching level 2500, one should be allowed to start ONE more account. Rules: It must be "registered" in some manner with Kano so that legit monitoring can take place. It cannot become a boss/cash cow for the higher account. It cannot list enemies for the higher account. So, if either account places a bounty, the other account cannot collect it. That makes more active players for the game, allows one to enjoy a different build than their original account, but does not allow abuse. If one feels they need more than two accounts and they are caught, then they should forfeit all but one of their accounts.

    Just a the cuff, so not sure if it has any merit or not. Oh, and as I've seen mentioned here in the past, when you run out of play in one account or have no one to battle, you would have something else to do that keeps the player in the game instead of logging out entirely.
  10. polishpimp

    polishpimp Well-Known Member

    Not to shabby....for a girl, lol. I like the idea but it doesnt address the existing illegal alts.

    What would be a real hoot is for Kano to have sting operation of some sort. Have them announce they will buy alt accounts for FP...the higher the level the more FP u get. Then they can turn around and ban their I totally realize you would have to be a complete idiot to fall for it....Thats why I estimate they would get hundreds if not thousands of takers, granted...most would be from just a couple of
  11. Das liebe Beil

    Das liebe Beil Well-Known Member

    Interesting idea to say the least. It would allow a player to start over with a different build and if they ever feel like it, they can also safely abandon one of these 2 legal accounts totally.

    In another game that I play, there is a slightly similar policy regarding getting caught while using Alts. If you get caught by the Multihunter with Alts, you'll lose all but one account, the one you can keep is the smallest account. I feel that anyone who has active alts should be banned, all accounts, especially if they shelled out much money. Let it be a painful lesson.

    A sting operation, sounds fun. Remembers me of hi5 times, there were often players who offered to fill up your clan with hired clan in the World Boss Feed. All they needed was your hi5 log-in info.

    I'm pretty sure that there are enough people who would be stupid enough to fall for that, but it can also be abused easily. Create an alt, turn your alt in to Kano and claim some people you don't like as your alt accounts.

    I think that Kano should monitor the feeds of the games, too, there are often enough players who will admit to using alts in the feeds. Hell, I have some mobbies taunt other players with messages like: "Oh, you managed to kill one of my smaller alts? I'm almost impressed." To make it easier they can activate a filtering program which will search only for key words to flag a post and a player.

    That all said, I really think that there needs to be something done about alts, it's no fun if you return to a game where you were absent for a while and suddenly people tell you they suspect you sold your account to someone else/are someone else.
  12. polishpimp

    polishpimp Well-Known Member

    Not that Kano would ever do it.....but abuse? I guess if it were a real buy back program....there would have to be some parameters like amount of time played etc etc, but as a sting operation it would be funny as hell if someone went out and started a brand new alt just to get the FP, hell I'de ban them too for trying to get over on Kano. Some people are so stupid....once they caught wind of the sting operation.....they would probably put out warning messages in the clan feed...guess we would see who the alt sympathizers were as Turning in a rival wouldnt work....because u would need their log in .....if they happen to have the log in...then wham....ban em both. Hell....even if they didnt ban em...i might actually pay to see a list of who fell for it....thats entertainment!

    I agree....Ive seen countless players admit to having alts in the feeds. We know its only a small percentage of players that make it to the forums, I wonder how many actually read the TOU? Its also fun to watch n read some of the more notorious suspected alt users posts, IHow many times do u see them get all frazzled and make a post forgetting which account they are in? Ive seen former #1 players do it, kittys, playmates ,drinkers of blood, small mama brendles, wolves, and men of a thousand names do it so regularly I often wonder if they remember who they really are
    Last edited: May 5, 2012
  13. Linda

    Linda Guest

    Top Poster Of Month

    there have been rumors and accustations here on FB with Pirate clan if players offering to buy or sell accounts , and at times it seems like it may have actually transpired, but alts here YES and then some, I am not sure about HI5 but I have read in this very forum that alts seemed like second nature to some players there, maybe HI5 had no TOS regarding that, have no clue , having never even heard of HI 5 before a few months ago, so really do not know , only what I have read here
  14. Das liebe Beil

    Das liebe Beil Well-Known Member

    I'm pretty sure that most didn't bother with reading the TOU at all. Why? It's mostly standard stuff and honestly, most people these days are too lazy to read long legal texts. Hell, I had been playing well over a year before I took a look at the TOU.

    Still, it's amusing to see people blatantly admitting to having alts in the feeds. I know some people who claimed that player X was actually their alt to help this player, but I guess this is a very small minority. That's why I think that alt claims in the feeds are legit. Alt claims in personal messages? Might be a bit more difficult. I could message anyone and claim that I'm an alt of well, anyone, but it wouldn't make the claim true. Claiming to have and use alts on the other hand can be considered legit.

    Yeah, if people mess up like that it's amusing to watch it. You sometimes wonder why they weren't banned for criminal stupidity, isn't there a law that forbids being stupid or a knucklehead?

    I guess, once Kano got rid of the Alts, there will be a bit smoother sailing, so to speak.
  15. Das liebe Beil

    Das liebe Beil Well-Known Member

    As far as I know you could have endless amounts of hi5 accounts, same with MySpace, you can have endless MS accounts.

    hi5 was more crime-infested than MS or fb, the amount of Ad-Spam advertising XXX-rated materials was simply astounding. And I didn't even manage to add more than 400 people on hi5. People tried to scam gullible people out of their accounts by offering to buy FP's for them. To that end the gullible ones merely had to reveal their password and E-Mail to them. Some were stupid enough to fall for such offers.

    And yes, there were some players on hi5 with enough accounts to play a whole guild or 2 alone. One reason for that was cheating: "To keep up with my cheating rival I have to cheat more and better!" another was "I need more clan and no one adds me! Screw it, I add myself to my clan several times."
  16. diva of destruction

    diva of destruction Active Member

    Gee, I don't know! I am ranked at 21 on the Leader Board, One Account, only one, hell's bells man that is plenty. And I can find someone to play with too. tsk tsk.

    SHO KOSUGI Member

    I hope KANO can ban the one who have been using alts to list other people especially their enemies and feed the money to their main account! Thanks
  18. Relentless

    Relentless Active Member

    I have seen many great players end up doing this. I know to many players now, who use the excuse "well they ruined the game first, with all their cheating so now i just give it back to them." You can't help the problem once you've become it.

    While i think Kano are trying to tidy up the games and get rid of those cheating, i think they are far to worried about going after one set lot of players, in stead of just going after anyone who is cheating.
  19. Linda

    Linda Guest

    Top Poster Of Month

    all I can say is WOW, and sorry I was right about how HI5 and now Myspace have no rules against more than one account, and things are so out of control , as players think they can do that on FB and in the games and do :(
  20. Angels Kiss

    Angels Kiss Member

    Cheating will never stop, to be honest. There are too many people playing these games for Kano to keep a good eye on. I love the Kano games and can never understand the need to cheat. I get a great sense of enjoyment when I reach new levels. Next one to aim for is 1100. Doing this on my own makes me feel good. Using a bot/alt or another way of cheating would not have the same effect, hence I have no intention of ever doing so. The sad people who do, need to get a life and remember the games are social and meant to be fun, not an urgent need to bully people or level so fast. There is no time limit, so what is so crucial about it all. Takes the relaxation out of the game :D :D

    Oh and I will never understand the need to have a huge fight count. All my fight wins are my own work, not the work of a bot being switched on whilst I go and do something else. Where's the fun in that!!!!!:D :D
    Last edited: May 5, 2012

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