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Max Payne 3′s innovative way of dealing with cheaters

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Max Payne 3 (Rockstar Games)

Cheaters might be an unavoidable reality in multiplayer gaming, but they still stink.

Rockstar Games, though, has an interesting way of dealing with the problem: isolate the troublemakers and force them to play against each other.

"We're aware that a small minority of players are spoiling the Max Payne 3 multiplayer experience for honest players with cheats and hacks, and while certain issues will be dealt with in forthcoming title updates, today we'd like to make it clear that anyone using these nefarious methods will be dealt with," the company said in a corporate blog post.

Rockstar has created an area called the "Cheaters Pool," where it will toss anyone who uses hacked saves, modded games or other shortcuts to gain an advantage -- a group the developer calls "confirmed miscreants." Once confined to that area, they'll only be able to play against others who have used cheats like invincibility hacks, infinite adrenaline or score boosters.

Don't think the infractions will be tolerated even in the pool, though. Anyone in that quarantine zone who's caught cheating a second time will be banished from the multiplayer servers indefinitely.

As for absolution? That remains to be seen. Rockstar said it might allow fallen players back into the game, but isn't promising that it will do so.

To round up the troublemakers, Rockstar is asking players who spot a cheater to email with the platform, Gamertag, description of the violation and a video or a screenshot if possible.

It's a novel approach to a widespread problem. Most developers simply boot those players from the game immediately (something Rockstar is reserving the right to do as well). Blizzard has recently started swinging its ban hammer in Diablo III, suspending or banning thousands of accounts for people who took advantage of exploits in the game.

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