Fortnite patches battle royale, adds BattlEye anti-cheat measures, and sues cheaters

Are you one of the 10M people who’ve dipped into Fortnite’s battle royal mode? Or perhaps one of the 500K who played concurrently this past weekend? Then you’ll want to point your eyeballs at the game’s latest patch. The 1.7.1 update brings battle royale stats, a monster power balance in the Save the World mode, and changes to the progression system for Challenge the Horde game mode. At least if the studio can get the kinks worked out, anyway. My favorite patch note? “Added a few structures near Tomato Town.”

Of note, Epic says it’s making good on its promise to upend cheaters, having now implemented the contentious but widespread third-party BattlEye program, even for PvE players. The program is used in multiple games but has been criticized heavily for privacy violations, most recently by the ARK Survival Evolved community. Epic, however, has stated on Reddit that BattlEye was not to blame for the recent spate of false positives in cheat detection.

That isn’t to say nobody’s to blame. Indeed, the company is apparently personally suing the creators of two sub-based cheat service, AddictedCheats, at least one of whom has been “banned from Fortnite at least nine times,” according to the filing. MOP readers will recall that Blizzard’s enjoyed a measure of litigation success over cheat-vendors preying on its own games, so we’ll see whether Epic does too.

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BattlEye clarifies anti-hacking program and privacy to ARK players

After ARK: Survival Evolved players expressed some concerns about the new anti-hacking program BattlEye and its EULA, a BE dev took to the survival game’s Steam forums to address those concerns. Noting that the reddit posts that are stirring up concerns were written by a “well-known hacker,” the dev acknowledged that the program is invasive, as it needs to be to do its job, and that the EULA was purposefully meant to be very direct to give players a clear understanding. Then he emphasized that the program does not root through personal files, saying:

Yes, BattlEye has to be able to scan all memory (RAM) and all game- and system-related files on disk. However, this does not mean that BE is looking through your personal files, credit card details or other such information and sends them to our servers. I want to clearly emphasize that we don’t do this.

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