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Subject: Catan ethics - Yes, I cheated on Xbox360 Catan rss

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John Tesoriero
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I consider myself a pretty good person. I've never cheated in school or in a board game. But, when I told my buddy about my game of Catan last night, he was stunned by one of my key plays for victory. He said, "Wow. You cheated. I never would have expected that from you."

Now, I'm feeling guilty. I guess I thought it was funny at the time, but did I cross the line of ethics with the following?

Eric and Peter were discussing a pending trade. After Peter set it up, I pressed the button to "Match current offer". Then, Peter "confirmed" the trade, because he didn't notice my avatar sitting there instead of Eric's.

In a Face-To-Face playing, he'd never have made this mistake, because I was sitting there with 8 points and about to claim the Longest Road. So, I essentially "sniped" the trade from Eric and "won" the game.

By opening up to the gaming community, I ask for you guys to forgive me.

Do other people find it easier to "cheat" in a video game? Given that I didn't really use any hacks or anything like that, I felt at the time, "Let's just see what happens here". But, of course, I would never actually try to steal a wheat from the resource pile in a Face-to-Face game.

Why then was I able to lower my sense of morality across the Internet?
 
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Lester Dizon
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To use videogamer jargo... ZOMG 'SPLOITERZ!

Very tricksy. If this becomes an issue, I will bet Big Huge games will tweak the interface in order to minimize trade sniping. But to answer your question, I think it's a combination of the lack of face to face interaction and the idea that if the computer will let you do something then it must be fair play. Also, people love finding loopholes.
 
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Fritz Schwartz
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I don't know about the Xbox version, but the computer players cheat on the PC version of Catan. One of the AI opponents will offer a trade and sometimes right before you accept it, the offer will change to something you didn't agree on!! In the real world, that's called "bait & switch".
 
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Throknor
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I wouldn't call it cheating, since it was allowed by the game. I tried it once against the computer, but of course it caught me and refused to trade with me. I'll have to watch for it on-line.

I suppose if they caught it and you refused to trade back I might call it "cheap"; but I wouldn't call it cheating.

Definitely something they might want to look into - maybe not allowing the unselected player to 'claim' the trade without confirmation.
 
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John Harley
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Trade sniping is essentially cheating, since you are misdirecting your opponent`s intent.

However it is not your fault this is not surpressed. It could have been an honest mistake.

Overall, I would say that you should make efforts not to trade snipe, or you will suffer hollow victories.

Hopefully an update can suppress this undesirable behaviour.
 
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Paul Bauman
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That's not really so bad. I've seen worse.

Such as enticing a player with a juicy trade and stalling at the trade confirmation, causing the player to waste his turn timer completely.

That really sucks, and I hope the devs find some sort of fix for it...like a 5 sec confirmation timer, or something.
 
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John Tesoriero
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Frohike wrote:
enticing a player with a juicy trade and stalling at the trade confirmation, causing the player to waste his turn timer completely.


I agree that this is one of the more frustrating aspects of the game. My friend kept doing that, but I don't think he was too malicious. When we play in real life, he sometimes gets the analysis paralysis. After a few plays, we all understood that the trade screen was a kind of "move it or lose it" area.

In fact, now that I think about it, I really like the time constraints, because it keeps things moving. I have been through some painfully long turns where a person just filibusters his/her way to victory, because people just give up and hand all of their resources over so that the person can finally finish.

But, some of the other comments above mention adding a "confirmation" screen. Actually, there is one, and it was truly Peter's mistake that he sorta auto-confirmed the trade.
 
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Paul DeStefano
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Throknor wrote:
I might call it "cheap"; but I wouldn't call it cheating.


Yeah, it wasn't cheating, it was taking advantage of an exploit.
 
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L. Scott Johnson
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Yeah, no cheating -- just bad implementation. The game should have an "accept or decline" on each trade offer -- it should not allow one offer to be replaced with another (at least, not without a hefty lag period and attention-getting "CHANGE" sound).
 
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Patrick Reynolds
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I played a game with a fellow who would always, and I mean ALWAYS, try to raise the trade of whomever had agreed to trade with him just before it went down.

Since the easiest way to trade on someone else's turn is to hit A to accept their offer, this guy would put out, for example, want 1 wheat give 1 ore, and then try to add extra wheat to his want when someone accepted. Certainly, it's not something that a savvy player would fall prey to, since the game has a built-in confirmation screen, but one of the other players got caught by it once, and the cheater was on everyone's S list for the rest of the game.

Something like this would not ever happen in a tabletop game of Catan, but I would consider it a more valid form of cheating than what you did, since this guy was obviously, maliciously, trying to cheat.
 
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