Cheating is always a hot topic in gaming. In League of Legends, cheating isn’t as rampant as other titles but there are cases a few cases in which people do intentionally cheat in their matches. Riot Games has Vanguard to prevent players from being able to use illegal software in their games freely. However, people want to know what is considered cheating in League of Legends and how the system is able to detect it.
Cheating in League of Legends
Not everything is considered cheating in League of Legends. People often rant about there being a lot of cheating in the game because some players gain unfair advantages. However, some actions won’t be flagged as cheating as long as they abide by the company’s terms of service. Unfortunately, the community doesn’t see it that way so people are going to complain anyway regardless of its legality.
Let’s take a look at different things that people consider cheating in League of Legends. Now it’s important to note that our goal is to discuss each point to prove whether or not one thing is considered cheating. Not everything that people do in this game is fair towards other people who play the game but that doesn’t mean they will be punished for abusing something that is outside Riot Games’ scope of influence.
Scripting is probably the most solid instance of cheating in League of Legends. Scripting is a type of illegal software where players can download, create, or install automated commands that allow their device to efficiently use abilities by detecting the movement and actions of enemies to land skillshots or dodge incoming abilities. This usually frees the player from relying on their own reaction time to make instant decisions.
Obviously, this is illegal because it essentially gives players the ability to outplay their opponents in a way that doesn’t rely on any skill on the side of the person using the scripts. Riot Vanguard usually catches people who use scripts but there are people who have managed to get away with it. Fortunately, most scripters don’t really get to a high ELO since the software doesn’t give the users the ability to make smart macro decisions.
Win Trading / Botting
Win trading is definitely a bannable offense in League of Legends and is considered a form of cheating in the game. The act of win trading is where two or more people queue separately but at the same time to increase their chances of playing against each other. One party will do their best to lose the game by feeding while the other will take advantage of the kills they get. This is definitely a clear example of cheating in the game.
Botting also works the same way as win trading but this only works on lower ELOs. Essentially, players will use bots to queue up against the account they want to rank up so that they are always guaranteed to win the game. Since bots don’t really have anything to lose, they can dodge games and lose all the matches they want before they are set aside to be used again for another account. The usage of bots is already illegal so using this method is a clear-cut act of cheating.
Stream Sniping / Map Hacking
Stream sniping is definitely one of the issues that the community likes to talk about. Even for non-Streamers, people hate the fact that other people are trying to secure an advantage by monitoring people’s movements in their streams. Unfortunately, stream sniping isn’t formally recognized as cheating in League of Legends. That’s why streamers opt to cover their minimap and delay their stream instead to prevent stream snipers from gaining any form of advantage.
Map hacking is a different conversation. Using various illegal software to remove fog of war, zooming the map, and being able to manipulate your champion or abilities to interact with the terrain in an unintended fashion are all considered cheating. The only reason stream sniping isn’t considered cheating is because the streamers themselves are basically giving consent to ALL their viewers to see their POV of playing the game.
Objective Timers / Third-Party Helpers
Downloading third-party programs like Blitz allows you to access timers on jungle camps and information on proper jungle pathing. Players can also see stats on enemy players on the loading screen such as which players are gank prone. Premium users also gain more information. However, using this program isn’t considered cheating even though it gives players a massive advantage. These are not malicious programs. Instead, they are considered add-ons that help players.
Riot Games has given these companies permission to become add-ons in the game. This is because Riot Games believes that the information that add-ons like Blitz add to the game can simply be emulated by having various tools and websites open on the side. Since the information is accessible to all players and are intended to help players improve in a good way, they aren’t considered software that is intended for cheating.
Smurfing is the act of using low-level or low-ELO accounts to win more games. Smurfing can be done for the sake of their own entertainment or to boost accounts and get them to a higher ELO. In both instances, neither is considered an act of cheating. However, Riot Games has expressed that such actions break the terms of service. That’s why Riot Games has implemented a smurf software that prevents people from abusing low ELO games.
There are many people who buy smurf accounts in the game and most of their intentions are harmless. Smurfing usually gives players a better experience in the game since they are able to fix their ELO and start over without having to grind all over again. Since smurfs eventually leave the ELO they are playing on, it isn’t considered malicious or illegal to have smurf accounts.