Publisher Ubisoft has warned of banning players found cheating, hacking or using any form of unfair advantage in its tactical FPS Rainbow Six Siege. The studio has announced on its website that it will issue permanent bans to any players found cheating in the game, even if it is their first offence, as of 7 June.
"The presence of cheating in the game is something we take very seriously, and is a priority on the development team," Ubisoft said on the Siege website. "This update is one step among many that we are working on to better engage with the community on this issue."
According to the game's updated code of conduct, the maximum penalty for a player found "running a modified or otherwise unauthorised version of the game client or a third party software which provides any sort of unfair advantage (wallhacks, aimhacks...) or causing detriment to other players' experience" will be a permanent ban on first offence.
However, not every player caught cheating will be permanently banned on their first offence, the company said in a FAQ on the policy changes. In some cases, they will receive a temporary ban restricting access to the online features of the game for up to 15 days. If the player is caught cheating a second time, he or she will receive a permanent ban.
In addition to its server-sided, anti-cheat engine, FairFight, Ubisoft says it is "currently assessing and testing" other client-side, anti-cheat options that will be implemented in the future.
In March, the game's patch 2.2 included a new "Report" button that allows players to flag suspicious behaviours and a kill cam for ranked matches to deter 'witch hunting'.
"We will be continuing to support the community on this issue, and we want to assure you that if a player is using cheating software, they are not welcome in Rainbow Six Siege," Ubisoft said.
While cheaters have long plagued video games, particularly multiplayer titles, the rise of eSports as an extremely competitive, multi-million dollar industry has resulted in developers taking a much more aggressive stance on cheating in games.
Ubisoft's announcement follows Blizzard's firm crackdown on cheaters in its popular hero-based FPS, Overwatch. Since its release two weeks ago, the developer has banned thousands of Overwatch cheaters including over 1,500 players in China alone.