Ubisoft starts messing with it Rainbow Six Siege players cheating by using XIM or similar devices to fake controller input by using a mouse and keyboard on the console. In an update to Rainbow Six Siege, players who cheat by using third-party devices like XIM will quickly notice more input latency that will interfere with their aim.
Devices such as XIM, Cronus Zen, and ReaSnow S1 are often used in online competitive shooters to allow mouse and keyboard users to combine the benefits of controller aim assist with the benefits of mouse and keyboard movement. They are steadily becoming a problem across the street Overwatch, Call of Duty, Destiny 2, Rainbow Six Siegeand other online shooters.
“This is a problem all console shooters have, especially the competitive ones,” said Jan Stahlhacke, gameplay programming team leader for Rainbow Six Siege in a video message to players. “There’s not really a reliable solution for this yet, in fact, the devices they use are specifically designed to be undetectable.”
Ubisoft has developed a system called Mousetrap that will detect these devices on consoles. In fact, Ubisoft says it’s been running this system quietly in the background for several seasons, building a detection system and understanding who’s using this third-party hardware.
“We know exactly which players are spoofing and when they are spoofing,” says Stahlhacke. “We also know that spoofers in the highest ranks are much more common.”
In a mid-season update, Ubisoft will begin applying additional latency to these players to mess with their aim and movement. “It starts very inconspicuously, but it will build up over the course of several matches and it will definitely be noticeable,” explains Stahlhacke.
Players using this special hardware will need to unplug the device to remove the extra latency, and after a few matches it will automatically be reduced. This type of hardware is also sometimes used by players with disabilities, and Ubisoft says it is aware and eager to learn more from anyone in the community who may be affected by these changes.
But hardware like XIM, Cronus Zen, and ReaSnow S1 aren’t marketed as accessibility devices, it’s all about giving players an edge in games. Cronus has one special section on his website for Rainbow Six Siege that does not mention the word accessibility once. Instead, it markets features such as extra aim assist, anti-recoil, auto lean, auto scope, auto reload, and other fire mods that help players cheat through specialized scripts.
Ubisoft is certainly not the first to try to ban the use of these devices. Epic games started issuing permanent bans for players who used Cronus Zen and Cronus Max last year. Ubisoft isn’t going down the ban route just yet, preferring to mess with these players rather than how Call of Duty: Warzone messes with cheaters.
The problem that Ubisoft, Epic Games, and other developers and publishers will run into is that it’s a game of cat and mouse against the developers of this third-party hardware. It’s designed to be undetectable for a reason, and these device makers have created healthy businesses that they won’t run away from.
Fortnite cheaters quickly found ways to evade Epic Games’ detection systems last year, and we’ll no doubt notice the same in Rainbow Six Siege. No one has a perfect solution to this problem yet, but Ubisoft is trying. “We plan to continue to monitor the data, update our detection system and further fine-tune the penalties,” says Stahlhacke. “We are committed to continuing to work to ensure fairness Siege.”