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JeffM
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Re: admin client

Post by JeffM » Fri Jun 10, 2011 4:56 pm

I really don't want you to suffer. I am sad that we can't provide a good solution right now. I just don't feel that what you are asking for is a good solution and if we go down that road we'll never be able to come back from it ( it's hard to remove features from people when they get used to them)

That said, I think it would be very mean for people who have made these tools to withhold them from people who have the experience to use them properly. Personally I would hope that they would see that some other people can use them and give them out when asked nicely. I just don't think they should throw it up on a website that says "this solves cheating".

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Re: admin client

Post by Pimpinella » Fri Jun 10, 2011 6:56 pm

Ghost. wrote:What you saying - rephrased into plain language: Ain't gonna happen - won't do it. Suffer it.
Fine. At least, we know where the goalposts are now.
Obviously thats the way you want to see it. You don't even try to discuss Jeffs very good points. Well, go with it then.

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The Purple Panzer
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Re: admin client

Post by The Purple Panzer » Fri Jun 10, 2011 7:06 pm

If you'd like a bit of lighter text, you might enjoy the new Cockney and Jive translations of my server guidelines:
http://www.bentz-engineering.com/serverguidelines.html ; personally I think the Pig Latin goes too far, and is hard to read.

(This is relevant to the extent that cheating is discussed there. I think.)

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Re: admin client

Post by FiringSquad » Fri Jun 10, 2011 7:16 pm

JeffM wrote:
FiringSquad wrote:A major new release will mean that all existing cheat clients will be null and void.
Of course it will be easy enough to build another one, but many people who use cheat clients just got a copy of it and do not have the skills to build another one.
I doubt the next "major" release will do what you say here. Even V3 does not have much in the way of cheat stuff ( mostly how flags are grabbed). The big changes that we need are for movement, shots, and death and those will take several major releases to work in.
I meant that existing cheat clients will not be able to log in to the new servers. The cheats will need to be ported to the new client.

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Re: admin client

Post by JeffM » Fri Jun 10, 2011 7:40 pm

Yeah but that will just take time :) but it is better then nothing, we have had the 2.0.x protocol for over 6 years now.

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Re: admin client

Post by The Purple Panzer » Fri Jun 10, 2011 8:31 pm

Constitution said:

"If I'm guessing right, this entire topic arose out of an incident where the observer info showed abnormal state, and an admin relied on this and banned a player who was not cheating."
...
"Yes, this observer information can be a useful tool to an experienced admin who looks at the entire picture, but you are more likely to see admins rely too heavily on this information, banning people in error which results in a time-consuming process of communication back and forth trying to determine and explain what actually happened."

You're jumping to at least one conclusion here, that the admin in that case wasn't up to the task in some way, which is emphatically not true. In the case you refer to the admin was very experienced, has demonstrated excellent judgement for a long period of time, understands the impact of lag/jitter, doesn't react emotionally - and then makes what anyone in a similar position would consider a sound decision. Would it not be advantageous to have more empirical data to sort things out?

I have people as admins because I trust them, and I've always felt fortunate that I had such people around to keep things running well. If there are technical oddities that undercut the evidence they see, then there ought to be technical modifications to at least qualify that data. They see what they can see, and act accordingly - but you seem to be saying they shouldn't see more, or they shouldn't act on what they see, and that's neither reasonable nor an effective way to manage servers.

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Re: admin client

Post by macsforme » Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:11 am

I was very careful to avoid saying that the admin in that particular incident was not qualified. On the contrary, the incident was handled with tremendous professionalism and was brought to a conclusion acceptable to both parties.

Nonetheless, these tools are only useful to a certain extent. You have to rely on a combination of your own observations and what the data tells you. More tools require more knowledge to know how to apply them, and many people do not understand the source code well enough to apply the ones we have correctly.

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Re: admin client

Post by Ghost. » Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:24 am

This has nothing to do with the incident you are referring to, Constitution.
Purple and many others know that I (and others) have been talking about this since a very long time (years), and the need for something more than gut-feeling or in many cases equally swishy-swashy observations to base the decisions on, where some (even if not perfect) additional details could have been highly beneficial to support or disprove the case, making it easier to make the RIGHT decision.

In your case, Constitution, I said, and others can confirm this, that taken the screenshot alone, I would NOT see it alone being ground for a ban, but it did raise concerns, and that future first-hand observation would be the appropriate next step, either to prove or to disprove the suspicions that the screenshot gave rise to. I don't really trust screenshots from unknown party's, as they can easily be doctored as well.
Neither do I trust hearsay, unless it's a trusted party (to me, well-known other admins who has first-hand knowledge of the incident).

How's that for relying on "hard" numeric data alone to make the decisions?
I know full and well that the data isn't "hard", but they do aid in making the decisions, and is just another factor among many that I take into account, and in some occasions are at least less "swishy-swashy" than a gut-feeling.

If the data is so unreliable as you claim, how on earth does anything work at all, in the game?
The way it is described, it seems to be pure chance that anything appears in the right (expected) position, or that you can get hits at all.

Yes, if there are considerable lag present, then you can not trust the data to the same extent as you can when there are little or no lag issues, but this is something you do take into account when playing and observing, unless you are one of these die-hard screamers that complains about lag in the 30ms range and jitter in the single-digit range, as being too high, without taking any reality into account.

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Re: admin client

Post by joevano » Sat Jun 11, 2011 11:04 am

Ghost. wrote:If the data is so unreliable as you claim, how on earth does anything work at all, in the game?
The way it is described, it seems to be pure chance that anything appears in the right (expected) position, or that you can get hits at all.
Yes, it is quite a surprise that anything at all works because, yes, it IS very wishy washy even in low lag situations. If it weren't we wouldn't be having this conversation. Yes it is more pronounced in high lag situations, but it is still very wishy washy. And as Jeff said any "official" response would be taken as fact. This game has many different versions of "fact" based on the perspective of observation, and by putting things in the official client good admins will take that into account but NO ONE else will. So in effect (as Jeff said) the majority of people WILL take any assessment the client makes as cold hard FACT and base decisions or cry about them based on those "facts". Misinformed is always worse than uninformed.
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Re: admin client

Post by JeffM » Sat Jun 11, 2011 4:57 pm

Ghost. wrote:
If the data is so unreliable as you claim, how on earth does anything work at all, in the game?
The way it is described, it seems to be pure chance that anything appears in the right (expected) position, or that you can get hits at all.
It doesn't work. A lot of what people think is cheating is simply the game's code not handling latency correctly. Just because you see a shot hit a tank on your machine does not mean that tank saw the same thing.

It works just enough to make you think it's robust, but it isn't. It was designed to be played on a local network, not the internet.

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Re: admin client

Post by Pimpinella » Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:52 pm

...and when it was designed to be played on a local network cheating was nothing anybody would care about - you don't cheat if you meet the other player on next coffee break where they might want to discuss the case eye to eye, so they didn't spend a single thought on that either.
Again, nobody can prevent you from putting cheat guessing into your client. You can apply a patch if somebody gives it to you and you can also make your own mod with very little c++ knowledge. Making it an official feature would probably be enough social TNT to kill the game entirely. I've been running servers for years and i am admin on many popular servers. You can be sure that i know very well about problems with cheaters and the frustration that defenselessness produces. Several years ago i was involved in an approach to detect cheating on the server. The end shot cheat detection is iirc the only thing that worked at all and even that is barely used by server operators because it produces a lot of false positives! Just recently i was accused by an unexperienced admin of cheating after being kicked for end shot. The server said i was cheating, that was his point. All i did was outrunning my own GMs after using a jumper! End shot cheat is easy to see and easy to detect and still the cheat detection produced false positives and leads to false accusations.

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