Call of Duty Warzone has a pest problem. The amount of cheating in the game is out of control. And even as the development team pushed new anti-cheat measures, it’s seemingly never enough. The issue has come to a head over the last few months, as cheaters and hackers run rampant. Now, the publisher has stepped in to try and send a message. On Tuesday, Activision Publishing filed a lawsuit against EngineOwning, a company that helps cheaters do their thing in Call of Duty Warzone.
The lawsuit was filed In the Central District Court of California, where Activision is based. It alleges that the cheat maker engaged in the “Trafficking of circumvention devices” with the aim of fostering “unfair competition”. While doing so, the cheats also made the programmers money, indirectly infringing on the Call of Duty rights. Activision alleges that the EngineOwning cheats ran the gamut for games in the franchise, including Call of Duty World War II, Black Ops II, Black Ops III, Warzone and more.
The suit also seeks damages by alleging that “widespread cheating can also lead to negative social media posts and headlines in the press,” going further, the company says that “cheating software has caused Activision to suffer massive and irreparable damage to its goodwill and reputation and to lose substantial revenue.”
I don’t know, maybe the mass firings and terrible labor environment had more of a negative impact on your bad reputation.
In recent months, Activision has attempted to crack down, to little effect. Cheaters have been surprisingly robust at evading bans, in part thanks to the efforts of the cheat creators.
But Activision makes its goal clear in the opening pages of the suit filing. “By this lawsuit, Activision seeks to put a stop to unlawful conduct by an organization that is distributing and selling for profit numerous malicious software products designed to enable members of the public to gain unfair competitive advantages (i.e., to cheat) in the COD Games,” Activision wrote. “These ongoing activities damage Activision’s games, its overall business, and the experience of the COD player community.”
This is a pretty established practice when it comes to MMOs and multiplayer games. Activision in particular have a history of doing this. The company previously filed suit against other cheat sites. The hope is that the other cheat makers in the market will get scared of, wanting to avoid losing their livelihood. So with a lawsuit, it’s likely some other companies will drop out of the market.
EngineOwning also makes cheats for other games, including Star Wars Battlefront II, and various Battlefield games. So we might even see a minute drop in cheaters in those games as well.