The competitive esport is shaken by another cheating scandal, this time in PUBG. After a global investigation of currently active competitive players, ten of them are getting banned due to the usage of an unauthorized program which profoundly changed the integrity of the game. Starting with December 19 last year, PUBG Esports team started a worldwide investigation of all currently competing professional PUBG players in order to find out if any of them is under a potential in-game ban because of use of cheating software on their accounts.
Considering that NPL Preseason starts earlier, the investigation was first conducted in North America and four US players and their teams were proclaimed suspended first. The continued investigation of other regions revealed that ten players in total used illegal software during a game of PUBG, which resulted in bans. These players are:
The gathered evidence is verified as concrete, therefore there is no way that any ban is imposed by mistake, be it technical or human. The commission also thoroughly investigated the system logs in order to determine if any of the banned accounts have been hijacked or borrowed, and they found nothing on that matter.
Among the ten banned players, there were six which used a cheat engine in at least one professional PUBG game. Two other players knew about their teammates’ cheating activities during PEL qualifiers and they are included in bans too.
Players who used cheats programs in online games, but not in professional competitive settings got a two-year suspension from all professional esport events, starting January 7th 2019. The minimal suspension for this infringement is one year but considering this particular program can seriously damage the core system of the game, and the intent that was more disruptive than usual, the punishment is harder. Players who used the cheese program in professional matches were punished by three-year suspension. Those two players who were aware of their teammates cheating also got the three-year suspension, because supporting the cheating activities of teammates should be equally punished as performing those activities, according to the PUBG officials. All players affected buy suspension also lost the status of PUBG partners.
Hopefully, this draconian punishments will avert professional players from resorting to cheats in order to advance. If nothing, this proves that esports is beginning to look like a regular sport.