Time to BAN all the 'special trackers' out there

Discussion in 'Time Locked Progression Servers' started by Trebor, Jul 6, 2020.

  1. Tucoh Augur


    Here's some illegal code, please no tell police.

    #include <windows.h>
    #include <stdio.h>
    #include <tchar.h>
    #include <psapi.h>
    // To ensure correct resolution of symbols, add Psapi.lib to TARGETLIBS
    // and compile with -DPSAPI_VERSION=1
    void PrintProcessNameAndID( DWORD processID )
        TCHAR szProcessName[MAX_PATH] = TEXT("<unknown>");
        // Get a handle to the process.
        HANDLE hProcess = OpenProcess( PROCESS_QUERY_INFORMATION |
                                      FALSE, processID );
        // Get the process name.
        if (NULL != hProcess )
            HMODULE hMod;
            DWORD cbNeeded;
            if ( EnumProcessModules( hProcess, &hMod, sizeof(hMod),
                &cbNeeded) )
                GetModuleBaseName( hProcess, hMod, szProcessName,
                                  sizeof(szProcessName)/sizeof(TCHAR) );
        // Print the process name and identifier.
        _tprintf( TEXT("%s  (PID: %u)\n"), szProcessName, processID );
        // Release the handle to the process.
        CloseHandle( hProcess );
    int main( void )
        // Get the list of process identifiers.
        DWORD aProcesses[1024], cbNeeded, cProcesses;
        unsigned int i;
        if ( !EnumProcesses( aProcesses, sizeof(aProcesses), &cbNeeded ) )
            return 1;
        // Calculate how many process identifiers were returned.
        cProcesses = cbNeeded / sizeof(DWORD);
        // Print the name and process identifier for each process.
        for ( i = 0; i < cProcesses; i++ )
            if( aProcesses[i] != 0 )
                PrintProcessNameAndID( aProcesses[i] );
        return 0;
  2. That0neguy Augur

    Really? So you are telling me the registry that is specifically built to allow programs to check whats running and being used on your system is illegal? /gasp
  3. Abacab New Member

    The best way to catch them using it, is to spawn a fake NPC that will show up on network/sniffer traffic but not on ranger/bard/druid track

    All you have to do is just spawn those invisible NPC's the trackbots will ping their discord, and whoever shows up 60 deep you just issue out a week suspension.

    You just have a guide/GM rotate this every week.
    Hendar, Ilshade and Tucoh like this.
  4. Trebor Journeyman

    You are incorrect. I'm not calling out anybody by name, which is against the rules. But by the sounds of it, like 90% of people are already using it anyway.
  5. TheChosenOne Augur

    hehe yea ban everyone using ShoEQ and there will be like 15 players left with subscriptions
  6. Honkietonk Journeyman

    It'd be funny but it'd never work more than once, they'd just start having to do confirmations.

    My personal favorite was finding where they had the level 17 monk tucked away into a corner and get it aoe'd. Without fail every time, shortly after comes some cleric from flavor of the month batphone guild to come rez it. Not obvious at all.
  7. Machen Augur

    Only by their actions. In the distant past, making a beeline for a mob right after it spawned halfway across the zone was enough to warrant a ban if a GM observered. I suspect it's been many many years since that was last employed though.
  8. Magickon Elder

    This wouldn't really work. In classic for example, if a guild is wanting to see if Cazic is up...the eye of cazic thule can definitely tell if he's up, but even if they added a fake (and there are fake npc's that show up in the eye of cazic thule already) all a spotter has to do is look and see that Cazic is up. CT is huge...and Dracoliche is no punk either...they are easy to spot. Running around in a full spawn of pofear for many solo classes is a death wish...but all it takes is someone feigned to be able to spawn watch Cazic and Draco to their hearts content. And considering how people want to farm planar armor, the zone is commonly farmed of many mobs already, making it even easier for the spotters. Yes, if someone trains dracoliche on you it will kill the feigned person...but that's ok, as that would just be a gift. 100% confirmed dracoliche spawn bros!

    There's several raid targets with completely safe spots to watch for raid spawns. There's a couple spots in permafrost for example where you can spot for Vox to your heart's content.

    And if the feigned person knew when they died, they would know when they could take 24 hours off even bothering to load in to watch him.

    The eye of cazic thule has existed for so long, and isn't likely to go anywhere. People even use it on live for "benign" reasons because it's often times simpler to keep it open for when they are trying to find a specific quest npc in a crowded zone.

    Is it cheating? Absolutely. But it's not going anywhere anytime soon. Some of the prior posts talking about how if DB wanted to, they could detect it's usage. It's actually pretty easy to modify the eye of cazic thule so it wouldn't be seen, as it would be seen as something else.

    In many cases you don't even need to stay in the zone to watch spawns. Since there's so much time in classic/kunark where you don't have much going on, it's really easy for people to just drag little alts to spots to spawn watch mobs and park them there. For example it doesn't take too long at all to roll up a low level necro (necro's work better for this than monks in my opinion, since they can bind) whose sole purpose is to do nothing but pop into the world on occasion, and pop right back out when they have confirmed a mob is up or not before popping right back out.

    This is just one reason why in later expansions as the game advanced (and the idea was stolen from other games) to where instance lockouts were used for raid targets.

    Getting back on point while it's obvious the open world guilds use the eye of cazic thule to track raid targets, a metric ton of non-raiders use it for sheer convenience. It's 2020, many people have no qualms about "cheating" with tracking, to make the tedium of farming or navigation easier.

    If you ask me the real thing that should be addressed from a cheating perspective is how easy it is to just decide "there is no spoon" and completely ignore locked doors.
  9. Gnothappening Augur

    Curious, technically isn't Brewalls cheating? You are altering the game files by adding some. You are getting maps in zones that aren't supposed to have maps.
    TheChosenOne likes this.
  10. Zi0nized New Member

    It's not cheating no. Keep in mind that the software they are mentioning is doing things dynamically in real time. Adding colors to your map files is definitely not against the rules.
  11. Nennius Augur

    And the fact that the devs. provided tools to create maps makes the the point moot.
    Tucoh and Skuz like this.
  12. Honkietonk Journeyman

    Not really. The interface in-game specifically allows for the imported maps. "The other thing" is a completely independent third party software that reads the zone and tells you things that you probably shouldn't be able to normally know in a lot of situations.
  13. Numiko Augur

    easy to catch someone using it, GM spawns a GM invis named mob and watches for whomever bee lines for it, ban them all as they come in the room and try to attack it.
  14. Honkietonk Journeyman

    you just run into the same plausibility nightmare that's surrounded the thing since its inception. "I was keeping it on a timer!" "I was just checking to see if it was up!"

    by using it, i can absolutely tell you it's super obvious when someone else is too. and there's a LOT of people who are. but you can never really provide proof. it's just all too circumstantial and easy to play dumb or make an excuse that "could be" perfectly legitimate. unless they make it detectable, and give people warning to stop using it, there is no scenario where this gets fixed without banning a lot of the playerbase.
    TheChosenOne likes this.
  15. yerm Augur

    That's not always easy. What if someone is just running along anyway, or doing circles etc? What if the mob you summon begins to cast a spell "whatever" and they see that? Not to be a jerk to darkpaw out of hand but I don't think anyone, including the folks developing this game, trust the customer service department to catch maphackers easily and anywhere remotely close to flawlessly. Then they have to submit their ticket or whatever internally so at minimum a coworker can respond to the "Y U BAN ME?" petition volley, let alone if someone hits them in the wallet.

    In short it's not easy and very prone to false positives.
    TheChosenOne likes this.
  16. Mezrah Augur

    Didn't they try this 4/5 years ago, I cannot remember if it was on Ragefire / Lockjaw or on the Phini server, I just recall reading a lot of comments about a guild caught out targeting a non-visible mob that did not appear on track and the excuses that were given about how they able to know about / target the mob.
  17. TheChosenOne Augur

    That isnt proof enough tho, you have to be absolutely sure before you start banning accounts and just seeing someone beeline for a mob isnt in and of itself proof of anything. I've played this game off and on for 20 years, and there are countless times I "beelined" to the Ancient Cyclops or some other rare mob on sheer accident

    There is nothing they can/are going to do about it. This game passes stupid amounts of data via log files, that is ancient technology/design that no longer exists in modern games for exactly this reason. DBG doesn't have the manpower or resources to battle against all the different cheat programs etc that exist and they wouldn't be able to keep up with all the new ones as the cheat programs evolve/adapt to their detection.

    They would also lose a huge percentage of their subscriber base and shoot themselves in the foot.

    I played this game since 1999 beta, and it wasn't until a few weeks ago that I learned of some of these programs and their rampant use. Players have a choice, either get angry or get even. I made my choice.
    KimchiGoddess likes this.
  18. Tarvas Augur

    As one old soul impressed upon me in a fateful meeting, who is "they?"
  19. Silver-Crow Augur

    You can spot the showEQ users a mile away, and it's so easy to catch them just by using the 'fake spawn idea'

    It's pretty annoying when a named mob pops right next to you, and someone you know was miles away suddenly appears with their 'boom' boxes in tow and kill it in under 5 seconds.

    Just go to AC isle in OOT on Aradune and you'll see it in motion. you just need to look at the logs of the zone and it's always the same one or two players selling loot rights on AC rings. You're not telling me they're that 'lucky' when there's groups scouring the isle for the same mob.

    To be honest this is a side effect of having the Krono. If people are not making krono money it probably wouldn't be so rampant.

    No easy win apart from perhaps running some sting operations to catch the worst perpetrators. Basically it's up to DPG to sort out.
  20. Darchon_Xegony Augur

    It is pretty clear they have no desire or lack the means to ban all the users of the program and of the macroing program. This may be a technical issue where they don't have the infrastructure in place to see who is using these programs, it may be a manpower issue where they don't have the staffing hours to allot for tracking down users or it may be a money issue where they are concerned the number of users is so large a banning would result in a huge loss of income. Whatever it may be, it is clear they will not be going out of their way to stop the use of these programs.

    All I ask is they pick some features from these programs that they can stomach being part of the game, and incorporate them into the core game as quality of life features. They surely will not put users of the programs and non-users on equal footing, but it would bring the levels more closely in line.

    For ShowEverQuest, just give tracking to all classes. Also provide some mechanism by which players can track or locate ground spawns. Make a sense-ground spawn ability like Locate Corpse or Sense Summoned. Make ground spawns appear in Track under "Unknown Item". Just something to make players who choose not to use these unapproved 3rd party programs on a bit more even footing if they are in competition with other players in open world zones for limited resources.

    For Macaroni, start off by improving the /follow command to not constantly lose characters on tight turns or in geometry. Implement a /follow or /stick command for melee characters to use on NPCs. The ability to track a moving NPC and stay in melee range is not compelling or interesting gameplay in an MMO.

    Improve ingame Macro hotkeys. Start off maybe by adding more lines, increase from 5 to 10 maybe. Add a /repeat function in an in-game macro that can allow the macro to begin back at the top once it runs through the rest of the lines of the macro, also add a /cancel function to end a macro. If adding additional lines isn't an option, add a function to call another macro within a macro. IE if you run through 4 lines of Macro 1 for example, /assist MA, /cast Tash, /cast Slow, /cast Cripple, the 5th line could be /usemacro Macro 2. Macro 2 could just be 5 lines of /cast Nuke.

    These sorts of changes would be extremely crude versions of what the 3rd party program allows players to do, but it would make boxing without it a little less inefficient in comparison.

    Some of these features could be blocked until later era expansions if they are seen as threatening the game experience of classic TLPs by the majority, but it is long past time they've added features to the game that would help balance out the capabilities of the haves and the have nots when it comes to using unapproved 3rd party programs.

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