Activision Blizzard to sue hackers for damaging game

22 May 2014

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Activision Blizzard, one of the world’s largest game publishers, is to take on hackers of its game Starcraft II for what it claims is damage to the game’s reputation and player-base.

According to torrentfreak.com, Activision Blizzard has filed all the necessary papers with a federal Californian court to take on the relatively small band of hackers who have found ways of subverting the game to give themselves an unfair advantage over other players.

While hardly a new phenomenon, hacking games has always been a major target of criticism from a large number of the gaming community, but until now it has largely been considered merely a fact of life in terms of gaming.

The cheat in this instance on Starcraft II is one known as the ‘ValiantChaos MapHack’, which gives the player faster abilities to automatically assign tasks to characters in the strategy game that otherwise would require time to manually control along with other visual cheats.

It is believed Activision Blizzard is citing copyright infringement as the basis for the lawsuit.

“Defendants create and sell their unlawful software products with the knowledge that they are facilitating and promoting users to infringe Blizzard’s copyrights, to breach their contracts with Blizzard, and to otherwise violate Blizzard’s rights,” the company said in its filing.

Aside from just distributing the hack online, the Valiant Chaos group responsible for it has also been making significant sums of money from supposed "donations" of US$62.50 to access the hack, but the individuals responsible have yet to be identified.

Colm Gorey is a journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com