After Polish YouTuber “Mefju23” shared a video outlining an audio exploit in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, hundreds of players were permanently banned from FACEIT.
Mefju23’s video showed off an audio exploit where players were able to increase the sounds of footsteps, weapon drops and other vital audio cues, making it much easier to know where opponents were at any given time. The file, called “Soundmixers.txt” changes certain parameters to give users an extreme advantage over the opposing team.
In the video, Mefju23 warned that changing the audio settings could be a bannable offense. Despite the word of caution, it seemed that many players felt it was worth the risk and used the audio exploit while using FACEIT. The competitive gaming platform responded by permanently banning over 400 accounts for cheating by using a game exploit.
A full list of the banned players can be found here.
FACEIT’s incredibly quick response to the situation has made it clear that the competitive platform has a zero-tolerance policy towards hacks and exploits. A permanent ban might seem quite harsh, but this is a game-breaking exploit that gives an enormous competitive advantage.
Discussing its anti-cheat tools, FACEIT explained that they count cheating as not just cheats and hacks, but “use of any exploits that bypass the anti-cheat protection” and “using game exploits to gain an unfair advantage.”
After FACEIT decided to punish the cheaters for using “Soundmixers.txt,” Mefju23 decided to come forward and make another statement on the audio exploit. According to a recent Facebook post, Mefju23 was getting a lot of texts from people who got banned after watching his video.
While he urged players to stop using it, most of Mefju23’s anger was directed at FACEIT for banning players that used “Soundmixers.txt.”
“Editing this file could match the pre-existing sound settings in the game to to max, which would make us hear the footsteps just as loud (except that we would spoil our hearing through other sounds, like that of a gun and other misbalanced sounds),” he ranted.
Still, he offered an apology to the players who used his video as inspiration. He then took down the video entirely.
On Reddit, CSGO players continued to debate if the sound exploit was truly a ban-worthy offense. Some agreed with Mefju23 that if this audio exploit exists within the game itself, is it really cheating? But others felt that purposely choosing to do something that FACEIT rules as cheating should result in a ban.
“While I agree that those who have an unfair advantage should be banned, those values should never have been able to be edited by the user in the first place. The developers should have taken more care,” one Reddit user said, clearly torn.
This was a common sentiment from the CSGO community, but many felt that tampering with those settings is uncalled for and most definitely ban-worthy.