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Blizzard is Battling Botters Every Day

Posted 22 Nov 2012 by

As we said in the article yesterday, the issue of botting in Diablo 3 seems to be coming to something of a head. Perhaps at least partially spurred by our article, one of the Blizzard CMs finally replied to some botting threads on Wednesday. Mostly they replied by saying “this is not the thread you’re looking for,” and by signing off for the holiday weekend, but in one thread there is an official statement, of sorts.

It’s long and attempts to reassure. Here’s an excerpt, you can read the whole thing if you click through.

An important thing to keep in mind is that we don’t make public announcements every time we action players for cheating, and the reason for this is that we are constantly removing this kind of exploitative behavior from the game — on a weekly basis, sometimes even on daily basis…

It’s something we take very seriously, though. Our developers, support staff, and anti-hack teams are all busting their butts to ensure that your online experience is as free of cheats, hacks, and bots as possible. From the development side, we look at ways to reduce the effects of exploitative behavior on the community and/or prevent certain programs from working outright. This trick here is to make sure that whatever we do doesn’t negatively impact legitimate players, which is actually a very fine tightrope to walk (you saw the complications of that whenever we introduced game limiting)…

The reality to all of this, though, is that even though we devote considerable time, effort, and heart to removing bad behavior from the game, there will always be individuals who excel at coming up with new ways of getting around the roadblocks we put up.

…we have done many things to deter botting and remove those who are botting from the game environment. From the development side — just to name a few things — we’ve implemented game limits and AH limits. We’ve painstakingly removed exploitable monsters, chests, events, and locations, or made adjustments to them so that they would not benefit botters. And we continue to add layers to our reporting systems (I’ll pass on your feedback about adding more, though). On top of that, we have meetings each week with the development team to discuss what more we can do to help prevent this kind behavior (like I said previously, though, most solutions would negatively impact legitimate players…for example, CAPTCHA). From the anti-hack side, we monitor for bad behavior around the clock, and we routinely issue ban waves for verified cases of botting. We’ve also brought legal action against several companies who develop these types of programs.

So, are the botters just that clever, or do you still feel that Blizzard’s security is indifferent and/or incompetent? Or consider this — what if Blizzard’s security measures are amazing, and they’re stopping 95% of would be botters/hackers/dupers/etc. So it’s only a small percent that gets through, but we see those and complain. Perhaps we’re living like the Hobbits in the Shire during the long years before the Return of the King, with our borders protected by unseen ranger guardians we can’t even imagine!

Yes, it’s fun to pretend.

The full post.

Banning Botters Movement!!!

Hi guys, I also realise the botting issue is becoming a little out of control. A friend of mine quit playing last night because he is sick of runing into bots all the time, before he quit he gave me all his gears ;-)

I was thinking if we could start a movement where all the legit players go play on a pubic game for 15 minutes every time they log into the game and actively report a few botters to blizzard, hoepfully it’ll get billizzard’s attention and reduce the severity of this situation.
Lylirra: An important thing to keep in mind is that we don’t make public announcements every time we action players for cheating, and the reason for this is that we are constantly removing this kind of exploitative behavior from the game — on a weekly basis, sometimes even on daily basis. Public announcements would become tedious if we decided to make one every single time we banned someone for using a bot, a hack, or some other kind of cheat. Instead, we usually will post something whenever we issue a big wave, or whenever we feel like we need to remind players that exploitative behavior is not okay and can lead to a permanent ban from Diablo III.

It’s something we take very seriously, though. Our developers, support staff, and anti-hack teams are all busting their butts to ensure that your online experience is as free of cheats, hacks, and bots as possible. From the development side, we look at ways to reduce the effects of exploitative behavior on the community and/or prevent certain programs from working outright. This trick here is to make sure that whatever we do doesn’t negatively impact legitimate players, which is actually a very fine tightrope to walk (you saw the complications of that whenever we introduced game limiting). From the support side, we make sure that your in-game reports reach our anti-hacks teams. And from the anti-hack side, we take action on players that we are able to confirm to be maliciously exploiting the game, be it through botting or other forms of cheating.

The reality to all of this, though, is that even though we devote considerable time, effort, and heart to removing bad behavior from the game, there will always be individuals who excel at coming up with new ways of getting around the roadblocks we put up. So, it’s a constant battle, but one that we’re willing to fight. If you want to pitch in, you can; the easiest way to do so is by emailing hacks@blizzard.com or submitting a report through our webform.

And, just for clarity, let me repeat:

– Exploitative behavior is not okay (this includes botting).
– If you are found to be exploiting the game, you can be permanently banned.
– Source: https://us.battle.net/support/en/article/diablo-iii-exploitation-policy

Btw as i read on some bot forum (am not botting just like to read the ban reports:) ) the last public statement called “diablo players banned” was about people using maphack and that zoom out thingy not a massive bot banwave.
Lylirra: It included, but certainly was not limited to, that particular type of behavior. We called it out specifically in the announcement, so it’s nothing new.

Lylirra is one of the only really respected blues, but her response to botting (which I am sure is primarily scripted from management) is extremely weak. Botters and spammers have run rampant since week 1 and from what not only I can tell, but the majority of community as well, is that Blizzard has done very little to actually control, or eliminate them
Lylirra: Not scripted. Not from management. What I wrote is based on my own experiences working at this company for over 6 years. I know almost each and every member of our anti-hack team personally, and I can speak first-hand as to how seriously they treat their role. They work long hours, they invest themselves completely, and they rarely get any praise for what they do because their job is never done.

Yesterday, I spoke with one of the guys on the team for over an hour about how difficult and frustrating it is to keep up with all the different ways that players want to exploit the game. You find a certain kind of automation program and get rid of it, another pops up in its place, and now it’s even harder to detect. Or you know that some players are using a particular type of bot based on intuition and experience on the job, but you can’t prove it beyond a shadow of a doubt. Permanently banning a Diablo III license isn’t something we take lightly, and there’s a lot more that goes into actioning someone for botting than what meets the eye. (Yes, kind of like Transformers, but fortunately with less Shia LeBouf.)

But, to counter your point more specifically, we have done many things to deter botting and remove those who are botting from the game environment. From the development side — just to name a few things — we’ve implemented game limits and AH limits. We’ve painstakingly removed exploitable monsters, chests, events, and locations, or made adjustments to them so that they would not benefit botters. And we continue to add layers to our reporting systems (I’ll pass on your feedback about adding more, though). On top of that, we have meetings each week with the development team to discuss what more we can do to help prevent this kind behavior (like I said previously, though, most solutions would negatively impact legitimate players…for example, CAPTCHA). From the anti-hack side, we monitor for bad behavior around the clock, and we routinely issue ban waves for verified cases of botting. We’ve also brought legal action against several companies who develop these types of programs.

But we agree with you: it’s not enough. Of course, we’re not sure that what we can do will ever be enough (we don’t know if we can eliminate exploitative behavior completely), but we’re willing to try. It’s an ongoing battle, though, not something you win after a couple of quick matches.


Tagged As: | Categories: Battle.net, Blue Posts, Controversy, Diablo 3 Hacks, Lylirra