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cheating through reloading

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  • Karawane
    This is a warning to email players: I have just lost a 3-months email game and found that I have been cheated in the following way: EDEE permits multiple
    Message 1 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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      This is a warning to email players: I have just lost a 3-months email
      game and found that I have been cheated in the following way: EDEE
      permits multiple reloading of the same savegame. (Forgive me, if this
      has been fixed with the new patch - we had to stick to the original
      version for compatibility reasons).

      This is how you can find out if you are being cheated:
      1) Planes and destroyers appear out of nowhere and always directly
      destroy your submerged submarines.
      2) Transports head directly towards your rearward cities and conquer
      them with little or no loss.
      3) Enemy infantry pauses 2 or more turns in front of your cities
      before it captures it.

      The idea is simple: the cheater spies on his enemies with planes or
      ships and then reloads the turn to erase his movements. In cased of a
      failed attack he reloads and then withdraws (or halts) the attacker to
      wait for better odds in a subsequent turn. That way, you never loose
      units during your active turn and get to know where the enemy has his
      high value targets.

      I would surely wish for some mechanics to impede this, e.g. notifying
      all players if someone has reloaded and/or played the turn on a
      freshly installed system (this is how other games handle the problem).

      Karawane
    • Steve - The Grey One
      Couple of things which of course do not make your experiance any better: 1) Cheating is its own reward 2) Only play with people you know, (not easy if you
      Message 2 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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        Couple of things which of course do not make your experiance any
        better:
        1) Cheating is its own reward
        2) Only play with people you know, (not easy if you don't know folks)
        3) Thanks for the warning
        4) 3 months invested, _ouch_. That hurts.
        5) I'd offer to play but I am not very good at follow through
        6) Hmm, they were cheating and it took 3 months? Not very good are
        they. < inocent expresion >

        Well, that is my 66 cents worth.
        Steve - The very trusting naive Grey One

        --- In empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com, "Karawane" <admiral@s...> wrote:
        >
        > This is a warning to email players: I have just lost a 3-months
        email
        > game and found that I have been cheated in the following way: EDEE
        > permits multiple reloading of the same savegame. (Forgive me, if
        this
        > has been fixed with the new patch - we had to stick to the original
        > version for compatibility reasons).
        >
        > This is how you can find out if you are being cheated:
        > 1) Planes and destroyers appear out of nowhere and always directly
        > destroy your submerged submarines.
        > 2) Transports head directly towards your rearward cities and conquer
        > them with little or no loss.
        > 3) Enemy infantry pauses 2 or more turns in front of your cities
        > before it captures it.
        >
        > The idea is simple: the cheater spies on his enemies with planes or
        > ships and then reloads the turn to erase his movements. In cased of
        a
        > failed attack he reloads and then withdraws (or halts) the attacker
        to
        > wait for better odds in a subsequent turn. That way, you never loose
        > units during your active turn and get to know where the enemy has
        his
        > high value targets.
        >
        > I would surely wish for some mechanics to impede this, e.g.
        notifying
        > all players if someone has reloaded and/or played the turn on a
        > freshly installed system (this is how other games handle the
        problem).
        >
        > Karawane
      • Christopher Marshall
        Karawane: There is only one way to really defeat this problem. Don t play by email. Setup a server somewhere operated by a trusted third party. All players
        Message 3 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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          Karawane:

          There is only one way to really defeat this problem. Don't play by email. Setup a server
          somewhere operated by a trusted third party. All players make their moves by running a client
          that logs into a server and retrieves information about the map only as moves are made. If,
          though a client, a player moves a fighter one space, the server sends the client the information
          about what is in the adjacent squares, and only the adjacent squares, move by move.

          I don't know if EDIE allows the style of play or not. It was my dream for some years to write an
          open source war game, similar in basic nature to ED, that was based around this client-server
          architecture. I called it GEMpire and worked on it for a while, getting it to the point where it
          could be played. You can still find it on sourceforge if you look for it. It needs a lot of work
          before it would be very satisfying to play, I think, and I have no near-term plans to revive it.

          Chris Marshall

          --- Karawane <admiral@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          > This is a warning to email players: I have just lost a 3-months email
          > game and found that I have been cheated in the following way: EDEE
          > permits multiple reloading of the same savegame. (Forgive me, if this
          > has been fixed with the new patch - we had to stick to the original
          > version for compatibility reasons).
          >
          > This is how you can find out if you are being cheated:
          > 1) Planes and destroyers appear out of nowhere and always directly
          > destroy your submerged submarines.
          > 2) Transports head directly towards your rearward cities and conquer
          > them with little or no loss.
          > 3) Enemy infantry pauses 2 or more turns in front of your cities
          > before it captures it.
          >
          > The idea is simple: the cheater spies on his enemies with planes or
          > ships and then reloads the turn to erase his movements. In cased of a
          > failed attack he reloads and then withdraws (or halts) the attacker to
          > wait for better odds in a subsequent turn. That way, you never loose
          > units during your active turn and get to know where the enemy has his
          > high value targets.
          >
          > I would surely wish for some mechanics to impede this, e.g. notifying
          > all players if someone has reloaded and/or played the turn on a
          > freshly installed system (this is how other games handle the problem).
          >
          > Karawane
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
        • Mark Kinkead @ Killer Bee Software
          Christopher is completely right about the nature of email play, it is completely prone to this type of exploit. and it is not preventable. It has been like
          Message 4 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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            Christopher is completely right about the nature of email play, it is completely prone to this type of exploit. and it is not preventable.
             
            It has been like this since ED first came out in '93. The senseless desire of a few to cheat in PBM games very much brought about the downfall of the online PBM tourneys run by Sir Lancelot in those days in my opinion.
             
            EDIE to some extent and EDEE even more has several measures in place to prevent various exploit types uncovered over the years, but what you are looking for here is a "touch it move it" rule that is just not possible with  the state-saving mode of play by email. It IS the natural effect of live play though.
             
            In the end PBM is about trust. Good news is there are many trustworthy folks that play Empire.
             
            EDEE Is a client server architecture, and the clients can log out and log back onto online games as they please. It is very possible to set up a server as Christopher mentioned with EDEE. Not so with EDIE.
             
            --Mark
             
             
             
             
             
             
            ----- Original Message -----
            Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2005 9:51 AM
            Subject: Re: [empire-deluxe] cheating through reloading

            Karawane:

            There is only one way to really defeat this problem.  Don't play by email.  Setup a server
            somewhere operated by a trusted third party.  All players make their moves by running a client
            that logs into a server and retrieves information about the map only as moves are made.  If,
            though a client, a player moves a fighter one space, the server sends the client the information
            about what is in the adjacent squares, and only the adjacent squares, move by move.

            I don't know if EDIE allows the style of play or not.  It was my dream for some years to write an
            open source war game, similar in basic nature to ED, that was based around this client-server
            architecture.  I called it GEMpire and worked on it for a while, getting it to the point where it
            could be played.  You can still find it on sourceforge if you look for it.  It needs a lot of work
            before it would be very satisfying to play, I think, and I have no near-term plans to revive it.

            Chris Marshall

            --- Karawane <admiral@...> wrote:
            >
            >
            > This is a warning to email players: I have just lost a 3-months email
            > game and found that I have been cheated in the following way: EDEE
            > permits multiple reloading of the same savegame. (Forgive me, if this
            > has been fixed with the new patch - we had to stick to the original
            > version for compatibility reasons).
            >
            > This is how you can find out if you are being cheated:
            > 1) Planes and destroyers appear out of nowhere and always directly
            > destroy your submerged submarines.
            > 2) Transports head directly towards your rearward cities and conquer
            > them with little or no loss.
            > 3) Enemy infantry pauses 2 or more turns in front of your cities
            > before it captures it.
            >
            > The idea is simple: the cheater spies on his enemies with planes or
            > ships and then reloads the turn to erase his movements. In cased of a
            > failed attack he reloads and then withdraws (or halts) the attacker to
            > wait for better odds in a subsequent turn. That way, you never loose
            > units during your active turn and get to know where the enemy has his
            > high value targets.
            >
            > I would surely wish for some mechanics to impede this, e.g. notifying
            > all players if someone has reloaded and/or played the turn on a
            > freshly installed system (this is how other games handle the problem).
            >
            > Karawane
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >

            > Yahoo! Groups Links
            >
            >
            >

            >
            >
            >
            >
          • dbott@vt.edu
            Not COMPLETELY or EASILY preventable, but didn t EDSecure create a shell that prevented the turn replay cheat for ED 3.11x? The key to that was controlling
            Message 5 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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              Not COMPLETELY or EASILY preventable, but didn't EDSecure
              create a shell that prevented the turn replay cheat for ED
              3.11x? The key to that was controlling the OS environment
              without touching the game itself. I'm not sure if that
              kind of protection would be possible INSIDE the game code
              without changing the game itself. However, I know nothing
              about software engineering so I'll just let someone explain
              my naive mistake about why EDSecure didn't do it or how
              what EDSecure did was different from revising EDEE.

              Dave

              ---empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com wrote ---
              Christopher is completely right about the nature of email
              play, it is completely prone to this type of exploit. and
              it is not preventable.
              --- End of quote ---
            • Mark Kinkead @ Killer Bee Software
              Ah yes I forgot about ED Secure saying it controlled replay with ED...but I don t remember how it purported to do so. Maybe Tim Roberts will speak out here
              Message 6 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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                Ah yes I forgot about ED Secure saying it controlled replay with ED...but I don't remember how it purported to do so.
                 
                Maybe Tim Roberts  will speak out here but it seems to me that this really is not possible to be iron clad as far as replay goes. There is nothing that would prevent me from moving the received mail around and running two instances of EDSecure for example - one to spy and one to play. And we all know there are people who would go to such efforts.
                 
                By using the controls of email as the transfer mechanism, the file essentially is beyond your ability to control it, and can be replicated easily. It is still a file that represents state, which can be repeated through replication. It may just made it a little harder to cheat in this fashion.
                 
                I think the  best way to fight such cheating is through community and making ED friends over time that can be trusted. Karawane definitely knows someone that he is not going to play in such a situation again (unless he is a glutton for punishment). I think there are many honest players right in this forum. I would say through my experience, I know that David Bott is someone that I would give me an honest PBM game as well as Karawane.
                 
                --Mark
                 
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: dbott@...
                Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2005 12:41 PM
                Subject: Re: [empire-deluxe] cheating through reloading

                Not COMPLETELY or EASILY preventable, but didn't EDSecure
                create a shell that prevented the turn replay cheat for ED
                3.11x?  The key to that was controlling the OS environment
                without touching the game itself.  I'm not sure if that
                kind of protection would be possible INSIDE the game code
                without changing the game itself.  However, I know nothing
                about software engineering so I'll just let someone explain
                my naive mistake about why EDSecure didn't do it or how
                what EDSecure did was different from revising EDEE.

                Dave

                ---empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com wrote ---
                Christopher is completely right about the nature of email
                play, it is completely prone to this type of exploit. and
                it is not preventable.
                --- End of quote ---
              • H101@aol.com
                In a message dated 4/21/2005 12:48:45 PM Central Standard Time, dbott@vt.edu writes: Not COMPLETELY or EASILY preventable, but didn t EDSecure create a shell
                Message 7 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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                  In a message dated 4/21/2005 12:48:45 PM Central Standard Time, dbott@... writes:
                  Not COMPLETELY or EASILY preventable, but didn't EDSecure
                  create a shell that prevented the turn replay cheat for ED
                  3.11x? 
                  Yup, and it worked quite well.  Of course in the days of Windows 98 and before every once in a while your machine would burp and you would have to ask your oppenent's forgiveness and ask to replay the move...  but those instances were rare and embarrassing.  I would think playing Empire with this add-on under the Windows XP environment would be great!
                   
                  Bill Shelton, Madison, WI
                • Tim Ailes
                  I am always happy to know that these people are only cheating themselves with their attempts to bypass the challenge. And besides, isn t their cheating similar
                  Message 8 of 9 , Apr 21, 2005
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                    I am always happy to know that these people are only cheating themselves
                    with their attempts to bypass the challenge. And besides, isn't their
                    cheating similar to just using the old AI? Hahahaha, just kidding!

                    Mark Kinkead @ Killer Bee Software wrote:

                    > Ah yes I forgot about ED Secure saying it controlled replay with
                    > ED...but I don't remember how it purported to do so.
                    >
                    > Maybe Tim Roberts will speak out here but it seems to me that this
                    > really is not possible to be iron clad as far as replay goes. There is
                    > nothing that would prevent me from moving the received mail around and
                    > running two instances of EDSecure for example - one to spy and one to
                    > play. And we all know there are people who would go to such efforts.
                    >
                    > By using the controls of email as the transfer mechanism, the file
                    > essentially is beyond your ability to control it, and can be
                    > replicated easily. It is still a file that represents state, which can
                    > be repeated through replication. It may just made it a little harder
                    > to cheat in this fashion.
                    >
                    > I think the best way to fight such cheating is through community and
                    > making ED friends over time that can be trusted. Karawane definitely
                    > knows someone that he is not going to play in such a situation again
                    > (unless he is a glutton for punishment). I think there are many honest
                    > players right in this forum. I would say through my experience, I know
                    > that David Bott is someone that I would give me an honest PBM game as
                    > well as Karawane.
                    >
                    > --Mark
                    >
                    >
                    > ----- Original Message -----
                    > *From:* dbott@... <mailto:dbott@...>
                    > *To:* empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com
                    > <mailto:empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com>
                    > *Sent:* Thursday, April 21, 2005 12:41 PM
                    > *Subject:* Re: [empire-deluxe] cheating through reloading
                    >
                    > Not COMPLETELY or EASILY preventable, but didn't EDSecure
                    > create a shell that prevented the turn replay cheat for ED
                    > 3.11x? The key to that was controlling the OS environment
                    > without touching the game itself. I'm not sure if that
                    > kind of protection would be possible INSIDE the game code
                    > without changing the game itself. However, I know nothing
                    > about software engineering so I'll just let someone explain
                    > my naive mistake about why EDSecure didn't do it or how
                    > what EDSecure did was different from revising EDEE.
                    >
                    > Dave
                    >
                    > ---empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com wrote ---
                    > Christopher is completely right about the nature of email
                    > play, it is completely prone to this type of exploit. and
                    > it is not preventable.
                    > --- End of quote ---
                    >
                    > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
                    > *Yahoo! Groups Links*
                    >
                    > * To visit your group on the web, go to:
                    > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/empire-deluxe/
                    >
                    > * To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
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                    > <mailto:empire-deluxe-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com?subject=Unsubscribe>
                    >
                    > * Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of
                    > Service <http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/>.
                    >
                    >
                  • Karawane
                    Thank you guys for the sympathy! I agree that email play cannot be absolutely safe against this form of cheating. However, I think some characters are just
                    Message 9 of 9 , Apr 23, 2005
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                      Thank you guys for the sympathy!

                      I agree that email play cannot be absolutely safe against this form of
                      cheating. However, I think some characters are just slightly weak, not
                      completely (like that of my opponent - he's family in-law by the way
                      ;-). So, if a complete backup or two identically installed systems
                      were needed to cheat, I am sure the temptation would be quite low for
                      most leisure players (this works well with other games). But right
                      now, you can reload EDEE turns in no time.

                      Anyway, I'll probably go with the dedicated server next time. Thanks
                      for the advice!

                      Karawane

                      --- In empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Kinkead @ Killer Bee
                      Software" <mok@k...> wrote:
                      > Christopher is completely right about the nature of email play, it
                      is completely prone to this type of exploit. and it is not
                      preventable.
                      >
                      > It has been like this since ED first came out in '93. The senseless
                      desire of a few to cheat in PBM games very much brought about the
                      downfall of the online PBM tourneys run by Sir Lancelot in those days
                      in my opinion.
                      >
                      > EDIE to some extent and EDEE even more has several measures in place
                      to prevent various exploit types uncovered over the years, but what
                      you are looking for here is a "touch it move it" rule that is just not
                      possible with the state-saving mode of play by email. It IS the
                      natural effect of live play though.
                      >
                      > In the end PBM is about trust. Good news is there are many
                      trustworthy folks that play Empire.
                      >
                      > EDEE Is a client server architecture, and the clients can log out
                      and log back onto online games as they please. It is very possible to
                      set up a server as Christopher mentioned with EDEE. Not so with EDIE.
                      >
                      > --Mark
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > ----- Original Message -----
                      > From: Christopher Marshall
                      > To: empire-deluxe@yahoogroups.com
                      > Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2005 9:51 AM
                      > Subject: Re: [empire-deluxe] cheating through reloading
                      >
                      >
                      > Karawane:
                      >
                      > There is only one way to really defeat this problem. Don't play
                      by email. Setup a server
                      > somewhere operated by a trusted third party. All players make
                      their moves by running a client
                      > that logs into a server and retrieves information about the map
                      only as moves are made. If,
                      > though a client, a player moves a fighter one space, the server
                      sends the client the information
                      > about what is in the adjacent squares, and only the adjacent
                      squares, move by move.
                      >
                      > I don't know if EDIE allows the style of play or not. It was my
                      dream for some years to write an
                      > open source war game, similar in basic nature to ED, that was
                      based around this client-server
                      > architecture. I called it GEMpire and worked on it for a while,
                      getting it to the point where it
                      > could be played. You can still find it on sourceforge if you look
                      for it. It needs a lot of work
                      > before it would be very satisfying to play, I think, and I have no
                      near-term plans to revive it.
                      >
                      > Chris Marshall
                      >
                      > --- Karawane <admiral@s...> wrote:
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > This is a warning to email players: I have just lost a 3-months
                      email
                      > > game and found that I have been cheated in the following way:
                      EDEE
                      > > permits multiple reloading of the same savegame. (Forgive me, if
                      this
                      > > has been fixed with the new patch - we had to stick to the
                      original
                      > > version for compatibility reasons).
                      > >
                      > > This is how you can find out if you are being cheated:
                      > > 1) Planes and destroyers appear out of nowhere and always
                      directly
                      > > destroy your submerged submarines.
                      > > 2) Transports head directly towards your rearward cities and
                      conquer
                      > > them with little or no loss.
                      > > 3) Enemy infantry pauses 2 or more turns in front of your cities
                      > > before it captures it.
                      > >
                      > > The idea is simple: the cheater spies on his enemies with
                      planes or
                      > > ships and then reloads the turn to erase his movements. In cased
                      of a
                      > > failed attack he reloads and then withdraws (or halts) the
                      attacker to
                      > > wait for better odds in a subsequent turn. That way, you never
                      loose
                      > > units during your active turn and get to know where the enemy
                      has his
                      > > high value targets.
                      > >
                      > > I would surely wish for some mechanics to impede this, e.g.
                      notifying
                      > > all players if someone has reloaded and/or played the turn on a
                      > > freshly installed system (this is how other games handle the
                      problem).
                      > >
                      > > Karawane
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      --------------------------------------------------
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                      >
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                      >
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                      >
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