ARK Survival Evolved’s Long Battle Against Hackers and Cheaters

ARK: Survival Evolved’s Long Battle Against Hackers and Cheaters

Since its release in 2015, ARK: Survival Evolved has been battling a prolonged fight against DDoS attacks, meshing, and duping.

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ARK Survival Evolved’s Long Battle Against Hackers and Cheaters

ARK: Survival Evolved has transformed since its release in 2015. With the addition of ten DLCs, seven years of added content, and countless improvements to the game’s mechanics, Studio Wildcard really does have the player’s best interests at heart. However, there are still some issues that players face during gameplay that Wildcard has not yet managed to solve completely.

Despite numerous patches, updates, and improvements to the security of ARK servers, hackers and cheaters still find methodical ways to gain an advantage over Wildcard developers. For players directly affected, this can negatively alter their gameplay and put them at a disadvantage to other tribes. The ARK community has continued to be very vocal about these issues, encouraging Wildcard to come up with solutions, which have worked to some extent. However, some problems remain unfixed, in a never-ending battle between rule-bending players and the ARK developers.

DDoS Attacks

ARK Survival Evolved’s Long Battle Against Hackers and Cheaters

Like many other online games, ARK has seen its fair share of DDoS perpetrators. Whether through downloading software from a free website, or by writing their own, “hackers” on ARK can raise server ping to its maximum capacity of two hundred and fifty-five, immobilizing all players and tames on that server. If a player attempts to transfer during one of these attacks, they run the risk of losing their character, so this is not recommended. Unfortunately, the only way players can directly oppose these attacks is by running another DDoS attack on the server to cancel out the initial one. Alternatively, players can submit tickets via the ARK website.

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As the player base for ARK has grown, so have its security measures. Gone are the days where players would become fixed to the same spot or have their movement diminished to severe rubber-banding for five consecutive days while seeing the dreaded red list of names come up on the screen during breeding events. Although DDoS attacks inevitably still occur on ARK servers, as with most large companies, they have become less frequent. Most unofficial server hosts also offer their own protection against attacks. However, those who host an unofficial server without a third party would need to think about buying their own DDoS protection software.


ARK Survival Evolved’s Long Battle Against Hackers and Cheaters

Moving aside from hackers, Wildcard also has its work cut out against cheaters. From the early days of ARK, a minority of players discovered a process called “duping,” where items and tames could be duplicated by following a certain method. As these methods evolved, so did the game patches released by Wildcard developers, disabling the various techniques. Although these patches put a stop to a lot of duping tribes, for the more determined players, it merely provided a challenge for them. Many players invented new ways of duping, sharing it with friends, and even posting some of the methods on YouTube for the whole ARK community to see.

For large tribes that already had an advantage over smaller tribes, duping gave them even more of a power boost, providing them with limitless resources, structures, and tames. Even with constant farming, smaller tribes were unable to match up to these alphas. One of the most common methods of duping was to have access to two PlayStations while using software that enabled the duper to suddenly cut their Wi-Fi connection on chosen devices. Repeating a pattern of cutting the Wi-Fi and restarting it, the duper would manage to load into an ARK server and duplicate everything in their inventory. Wildcard progressively managed to disable any variations of this method from taking place, to the joy of many and disappointment of a few, rendering duping a thing of the past.

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ARK Survival Evolved’s Long Battle Against Hackers and Cheaters

Another issue of cheating, one that has not yet been fully resolved, is “meshing.” While out in the open-world map, players can pose a threat to enemy tribes, with both parties standing on even ground. When a player discovers a way to enter the mesh of the map, the fight becomes brutally unfair. In the past, PvP had its own world of meshing, including mesh bases, mesh turrets, and mesh raids. However, Wildcard cracked down on this illicit behavior by adding an anti-mesh algorithm to the game, which can detect most things that are contained within the mesh. Once detected, the thing in question will be de-spawned and become irretrievable, providing most players with the incentive not to attempt such a thing.

So, with the threat of losing belongings, or even getting globally banned, players now have a much harder time trying to cheat on ARK: Survival Evolved. Duping has been removed from the game and meshing is now a chore, with worsening consequences. DDoS attacks occur less and less, allowing players to breathe more easily whenever there is a breeding event. Although the battle against hackers and cheaters is not completely over, Studio Wildcard has certainly made a stand, making life a bit more enjoyable for ARK fans.

ARK: Survival Evolved is available now for Mobile, PC, PS4, Switch, and Xbox One.

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