Valve Uses 1,700 CPUs to Crack Down on Counter-Strike Hackers

When It Comes to Cheaters, Valve’s VACnet Isn’t Playing Around

Cheaters have always been an issue in competitive online games such as Counter-Strike. Using hacks such as wall aim, x-ray vision and aimbots in order to get ahead of the competition are a common occurrence in multiplayer games specifically first & third person shooters.

However, at last week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, John McDonald, a programmer at Valve, revealed the measures that the developer takes in order to counteract cheaters in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).

There are about 600,000 5v5 matches in CS:GO every day so in order for Valve to combat cheaters in CS:GO, Valve bought a sever farm that contains 1,700 CPUs and they’re planning on getting 1,700 more, says McDonald.

McDonald explained that cheating was constant complaint brought up by players in both message boards and in emails received from pro CS:GO players. In order to solve this rampant problem, Valve created an anti-cheating program called “VACnet” which operates alongside a player-driven replay program called “Overwatch” that evaluates players that have been reported for breaking the game’s rules.

This new program isn’t the same as the Valve Ant-Cheat System or (“VAC”) since it is, according to McDonald, more accurate than either anti-cheating program that Valve has used.

“When a human submits a case to Overwatch, the likelihood that they get a conviction is only 15-30 percent, and that varies on a bunch of factors, like the time of the year, is the game on sale, is it spring break,” McDonald explained. “There’s a bunch of things but the point is human convictions are very low,” says McDonald. “VACnet convictions are very high, when VACnet submits a case it convicts 80 to 95 percent of the time.”

So, what do you think of Valve’s new anti-cheating program? Is it as accurate as Valve claims it to be or is it wrongly targeting innocent players? Let us know your thoughts on this in the comment section!