Xbox 360 fans of Valve's hit Left 4 Dead are apparently experiencing all the online multiplayer good times that PC users have enjoyed for years: hacks, cheats and exploits that bugger up the game for everyone.
An Ars Technica user named Mario has reported his troubles with the game, which came about courtesy of some too-smart-for-their-own-good users who have figured out how to make "console-type" commands work on the 360. This is nothing new to PC users, who have had access to console commands since at least the days of Doom (although not normally in multiplayer settings) but it's not the sort of thing you often see in console games.
"Versus mode is a blast, but recently, I joined a game and found myself in a safe house at the beginning of a chapter," Mario wrote. "Suddenly, about 30 witches spawned in the safe house with me, followed by two tanks." Both Witches and Tanks are very powerful creatures (Ars says the Tank can wipe out an entire team if used correctly) and normally the game features only one per level.
"Needless to say, somebody found a way to implement PC console-type commands on the 360 version," Mario continued. "Here is a video of the nightmare in action. Even worse, this video details the ridiculously simple process of performing this exploit on your own." He added that he was publicizing the trouble in order to encourage Valve to patch the game, noting that the company's reluctance to support the 360 version of Team Fortress 2 ultimately resulted in the demise of the community.
It's an unfortunate situation, but even more unfortunate is the near-inevitability of this sort of thing happening whenever multiplayer games enter the equation. Cheating through a single-player game is a matter of personal preference; cheating in a multiplayer game, with the sole purpose of putting the screws to other players, is something else entirely. Hopefully Valve will get this patched up quickly. It's just too bad it can't patch out the natural human instinct to be a jerk in the process.