Blizzard Sues Three StarCraft 2 Hackers

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Blizzard has already proven its low threshold for cheaters, issuing bans for folks who've attempted to meddle with StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty by way of third-party hacks and cheats. GamsSpot reports that the company is now suing three programmers it believes are responsible for crafting the exploits.

The lawsuit, filed last week in Los Angeles U.S. District Court, accuses the three programmers of "creating and selling hacks for StarCraft 2 in violation of the end-user license agreement, Battle.net terms of use, and copyright law." The suit also sites "multiple counts of copyright infringement and is demanding damages and disgorgement of any profits reaped by the distribution and sale of the hacks," as well as asserting that the actions of the three defendants encouraged others to infringe on the copyrights.

Two Canadian programmers going by the aliases 'Permaphrost,' and 'Cranix,' and a third programmer, 'Linuxawesome,' from Peru are the suit's primary targets. The location of the alleged hackers might create some interesting jurisdictional issues for the lawsuit, given that StarCraft 2's EULA states that disputes would be handled by a Los Angeles County court.

According to the filing:

The harm to Blizzard from Defendants' conduct is immediate, massive and irreparable. By distributing the Hacks to the public, Defendants cause serious harm to the value of StarCraft 2.

Among other things, Defendants irreparably harm the ability of Blizzard's legitimate customers (i.e. those who purchase and use unmodified games) to enjoy and participate in the competitive online experience.

That, in turn, causes users to grow dissatisfied with the game, lose interest in the game, and communicate that dissatisfaction, thereby resulting in lost sales of the game or 'add-on' packs and expansions thereto.

From The Chatty

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    October 18, 2010 12:34 PM

    I heard from a friend that is a Blizzard freak that they banned players that cheated in their SINGLE PLAYER campaign. That's like valve banning you for noclipping in counterstrike with bots or something. I don't own any Blizzard game because I don't like the settings of their games (as in elfs and no guns). But I'd be very pissed off as a player that bought the game.

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      October 18, 2010 12:37 PM

      i should check whether i got banned then, not that i'd really give a crap about b.net. i cheated in single player, but haven't touched the game since beating it.

      as long as i can fire up the singleplayer game and play again, i could care less what they ban me from.

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        October 20, 2010 7:21 AM

        Tell me the fun about cheating on a campaign against limited AI. I don't the good or the bad. Why you buy the game, to play it as it were an interactive movie or a game with difficulty and some achievement feel?

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      October 18, 2010 12:39 PM

      They did not ban him, they suspended him. The game comes with cheat codes, so it would NOT be like using noclip in single player. Single player and multiplayer use the same game and you are online the whole time and the hacks could affect multiplayer. See the earlier shacknews story about this incident specifically.

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        October 18, 2010 12:49 PM

        The point is, does it really matter how they cheat in single player? It's not affecting anyone but the player.

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          October 18, 2010 12:52 PM

          SC2 is online regardless if it's single player or multi. Also, achievements.

          Although I really dislike cheaters, I think there is a solution to this... Have a separate server for people who like to cheat.

          Anyone caught cheating on normal servers are permabanned (single or multiplayer). Just say it at the beginning and if it happens, give them a message saying "Don't say we didn't warn you".

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          October 18, 2010 12:58 PM

          Well the players who were using cheat-happens trainers were basically gaining achievements while cheating.

          That's the problem cause it affects their "achievement score" as a whole and unlocks portrait rewards. Using the built in cheats disables achievements.

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            October 18, 2010 12:59 PM

            OMG MY ACHIEVEMENTS HE HAS MORE THAN ME.
            Grow up.

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              October 18, 2010 1:07 PM

              how would you like it if the scoreboards were filled with players that had cheated and got 999,999,999,999pts in your favourite game? wouldn't be as fun then would it?

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                October 18, 2010 1:14 PM

                Wipe the scoreboards. Too bad this isn't about score and is actually about playing the Single Player game.

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                October 18, 2010 1:15 PM

                OMG MY ACHIEVEMENTS SCORE HE HAS MORE THAN ME.
                Grow up.


                Why would single player score show up with multiplayer score... oh wait....

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                  October 18, 2010 1:17 PM

                  That makes no sense. What are you trying to say?

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                      October 18, 2010 1:19 PM

                      Yeah i know, I thought you were addressing me. This site needs an edit button seriously

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                        October 18, 2010 1:21 PM

                        haha, yeah, I was addressing purekillforce

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                          October 18, 2010 1:24 PM

                          I think the problem with this, is blizzard throws the word HACKER out there, and everyone thinks of guys coming into Multiplayer with invincibility, and maphacks, when this in actually does not effect Multiplayer at all aside from Achievements.

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                        October 18, 2010 1:29 PM

                        This site has been fine without an edit button for years and years.

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                  October 19, 2010 2:43 AM

                  i meant that achievements are like highscores, if they can be cheated then they are rendered pointless and meaningless. Despite what your opinion of them is.

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                    October 19, 2010 10:33 AM

                    They're already meaningless and pointless. You can't buy anything with them. You can't trade them to anyone for anything of value.

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                      October 19, 2010 1:22 PM

                      but some are hard to get (without cheats) it gives you something to shoot for. And its fun to compare achievements with friends.

                      Why play the game at all? you dont get anything of value for it, and you cant trade it? you do it just for fun

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                        October 19, 2010 6:08 PM

                        I agree. The images gained from doing the achievements basically is like a badge of honor, showing that you were capable of doing said requirements to gain the achievements. Like some people pointed out, like the high score system from yesteryear.

                        The cheating I can understand if you just want to skip through and get the narrative. But understand that because the whole game is basically online-based, you're going to have to stay offline while playing and not earn achievements. But playing with cheating while online to get the achievements... that's just greedy. I can understand if somebody where going for the former but didn't put themselves offline, thus gaining the achievements (unfairly).

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                        October 20, 2010 11:51 AM

                        It's like boy scouts all over again.

                        Why don't you create your own hard-to-get achievement and document it on youtube.

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                October 18, 2010 2:49 PM

                Why would I care about how many achievement points some other random guy has???

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              October 19, 2010 12:27 AM

              heh, there are already single player cheats in the game, the *only* reason to use these hacks is for achievements.

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              October 22, 2010 2:15 AM

              Given the tone of your response, perhaps it's you that needs to grow up

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          October 18, 2010 1:27 PM

          I thought the "single" player was skirmish against the AI in the multiplayer area? Not the single player campaign or single player skirmish..

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            October 18, 2010 1:28 PM

            Nope, its the Single Player Campaign.

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          October 20, 2010 4:31 PM

          Blizzard feels that it harms their game, and cheating in single player can easily transfer to multiplayer. Also, it's against the EULA.

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      October 18, 2010 12:40 PM

      Starcraft is set in space, and has many guns. What are you, twelve?

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        October 18, 2010 12:45 PM

        ding ding ding

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        October 18, 2010 4:37 PM

        World of Warcraft is set in middle earth, and they have elves that use guns, they are called hunters.

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          October 18, 2010 6:34 PM

          But that's the point. There are guns. I have no idea what the guy is talking about.