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PUBG Chinese publisher leads state-assisted crackdown on cheaters

More than 120 arrests of cheat software makers

PUBG Bluehole
Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

The majority of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds PC installation base comes from China, so it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that Tencent, the game’s distributor for that region, has started cracking down on cheat software makers there.

Moreover, Tencent has the help of Chinese police to find, ferret out and bust the underground rings behind the bots. So far, the cops have opened at least 30 cases and made more than 120 arrests, reports Bloomberg news.

The accused cheat-makers are suspected of developing software that allows players a number of illegal assists, from aimbots to wallhacks. Bloomberg also notes that cheat makers have converted PUBG leaderboards into a kind of advertising for their wares, using their contact information as their names.

Analysts note that PUBG attracts large-scale cheat makers because of, well, its popularity. The installation base for PUBG is 27.6 million worldwide, according to Steam Spy, and almost 10 million of that comes from China. Eight million comes from the United States. The parent corporation of PUBG’s development team is based in South Korea.

Last month, Polygon talked to Brendan “PlayerUnknown” Greene, the game’s creator, who said an automated banning system has helped cut down hacking in the game by 67.5 percent (his estimate).

“We’re seeing progress, and this is something we’re going to continue doing because we want to provide a competitive platform and a fair place for people to play in,” Greene said then.

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