Respawn Entertainment announced today that they've begun punishing Titanfall cheaters. However, the punishment isn't what you'd expect.
The development team has been using FairFight since launch to detect cheats on the PC. They didn't take action, however, until March 21st. On that day, they gave out the first bans. They plan to keep adjusting their algorithm to spot additional offenders.
The most common type of cheat in multiplayer shooters is an aimbot. An aimbot is a program that gives players incredible accuracy even at great distances. It often allows players to detect enemies through walls as well:
If you're banned, you'll see "Fairfight: Cheat detected" in red on the right side of the Lobby screen. Respawn provided a screenshot so you know exactly what to look for.
This ban doesn't stop you from playing Titanfall altogether. However, it does ensure that you'll only be able to play against other cheaters.
"You can play with other banned players in something that will resemble the Wimbledon of aimbot contests," Respawn says. "Hopefully the aimbot cheat you paid for really is the best, or these all-cheater matches could be frustrating for you. Good luck."
The obvious loophole would be to join a party created by unbanned friends and then hop into their games. However, Respawn says that they already thought of that.
"When anyone in your party is banned, then everyone in your party will be treated as banned for that play session. If you are a non-cheater and you invite a cheater friend into a party, you will be stuck playing against cheaters. If you stop inviting your cheater friend, you will once again get to play with the non-cheater population. You do not get permanently tainted just by playing with a cheater - you are only banned for cheating if you are actually cheating."
It's easy to tell if you're in a party with banned players. The "Fairfight: Cheat detected" text will appear next to the name of said party members.
Respawn didn't mention anything about the Xbox One in their announcement. Several players in the article's comments seem to be insisting that there are cheaters on that console, though. If that's the case, I'd imagine Respawn is working with Microsoft on a solution. Companies tend to be secretive about anti-cheat measures until after they've been implemented to avoid tipping off the offenders.
Anti-cheat measures are just one component of Respawn's post-launch plans for Titanfall. The studio's also working on several DLC packs. Some of that new content, including new game modes, will be free.
If you feel that you've been unfairly banned, Respawn says you should shoot them an email at [email protected]