Bots – Introduction to the Menace

Hello everyone,

just like most of players who visit forums (or aren’t completely oblivious to the game), I heard of bots before. In case someone completely oblivious to the issue is reading this: a “bot” (shortcut of “robot”) is a program, that controls the player character so the player doesn’t have to. Bots appear in many games and there are many types, but in online gaming they are almost universally illegal.

In World of Tanks terms, bots are programs, that play instead of the human being – not to reach any stellar results of course, but to “grind” – in other words, to play and earn credits/XP, so the player doesn’t have to. Just like everywhere else, their use is strictly punished and uncovered botters will have their accounts wiped, or they get permabanned outright.

At least, such is the theory.

In this article, we will explore the issue and uncover the incompetence of Wargaming to actually get rid of them (and the steps Wargaming EU took to cover up the entire matter completely). But obviously, I am neither a programmer, nor an expert on this matters. That’s why I need help – someone really skilled in hunting bots.

Meet St0rmshadow. St0rmshadow is an esteemed member of the German EU community. Between 2001 and 2004, he was the vice leader of anti-cheat admins for ESL in Counterstrike, he was also a PTS member and between May and November 2013, he was a Community Contributor on EU forums, until he got kicked out for being too vocal about Wargaming EU not doing anything about the bot issue. He specializes in uncovering bots and ran a long-term program in the German community (since 2012), analyzing replays one by one, using various tools, to uncover players using bots and getting them banned. And let me tell you, he got really good at it over time. As I mentioned, he ran bot recognition thread on EU forums, until he got shut down by Wargaming staff (this is all that’s left of it). Right now, he runs the same program on private forums. But before we get into that, let’s talk about bot capabilities.

What a bot can do

When you say “bot”, most of us imagine a tank, that just stands in a corner, turning his gun around and occasionally shooting into the wall. Until today, I actually thought exactly that. I mean – we all saw idiots going into map corner and just camp there, doing nothing. Obvious bots, right? Unfortunately, by talking to St0rmshadow, I learned that bots can do much, much more. In fact, a good bot can be better player than 90 percent of all the noob players.

There are 8 types of widespread bots, ranging from very simple to quite complex and nasty, according to St0rmshadow. There are more, but some were simply discontinued. Please note that these bots are NOT some “Robin Hood” software, you have to buy them, since they require constant upgrades. Also, currently, no bot can operate artillery other than in TD mode. These eight are:

Tankleader – the best known WoT bot with 100 thousand (!) licenses in EU alone (this was confirmed via the bot forums themselves). It is continuously developed (to work with map changes etc.) and it can do a lot of stuff, including:

- using map pings and chat orders
- can move around and shoot enemies, it uses a “smart” system aimbot (weakspots) and as a result, it makes more XP and money than most noob players (!)
- has multiple profiles, making its behavior less predictable and harder to detect
- it is possible to recognize by several distinct features, such as gundrop right after the countdown and by backing off a few meters when encountering unforeseen obstacles, such as other players (after backing off, it turns slightly and goes forward again)
- it is very widespread, making its development very profitable, users pay via subscription mechanism
- currently, a very advanced beta version is being developed (Version C), which is almost unrecognizable from a regular player (we’ll look at an example later).

This is how a “standard profile” Tankleader avoids unforseen obstacles (you can see the JT 88 movement back and slightly forward over again, a replay of this “action” can be seen here)

JT88 bot

In other case, there was a bot with deactivated movement – it just stood there and reacted only when enemies came close.

Overall, Tankleader is the best system there is for now. There are others though.

Mbot – easily recognized and simplier bot variant. Unfortunately, it is available for free, but it is quite distinctive. Online versions usually also contain some sort of malware. Otherwise, it can move and shoot also.

Dnive/Dniwe – this one comes for free with Warpack (but that costs you 7 Euro per month). In connection with other Warpack software, it is deadly, it cheats and earns a lot of credits and XP. On tier 10 tank, it can score even around 3000 damage.

WoTEx 3.2 – new type of bot, very intelligent (no gundrops, starts right away), it’s free and hard to discover, but it is not stable. Yet.

VBot – quite a dumb bot, that just goes across the map with gun pointed up and fires randomly, or gets stuck somewhere fast. It loses more credits than it makes, but it’s for free.

WoTBotPro – another easily recognized system, it has problems with rotating the turret and often does it in “twitches”, or just back and forth very fast. This software is also paid by subscription. It can however create income.

VipBot – functioning bot, that however (intentionally) contains a trojan, that allowes its creators (or whoever’s out there) access to your computer.

RazorBot – alpha version, very dumb, just moves around

Alright. These are the basics. Some of them sound harmless and funny? Well… meet alpha version of the Tankleader C, recently caught by St0rmshadow



(video by Banelord)

As you can see, this is a prototype version of the bot and it is not yet perfect, but that will change. It can be recognized for exmaple by the gun aiming always in one weird direction (you can see that clearly when he goes downhill). This was no “closed test” by the way, this was a real botter (this guy) – check out his stats, 6 day interval, average 178 battles per day. A clear bot.

This thing can shoot accurately, move like a real player, is precise and deadly. When the turret rotation bug gets fixed, it will be uncrecognizable from a real (although bad) player. And there are 100k of these suckers around…

What Wargaming does against this and how they detect bots?

Short answer is: nothing.

According to St0rmshadow, the entire “we scan for illegal soft” is bullshit. They don’t. They might make some CRC checksums for mods, but as for external software, they rely only on “too many games in too short a time = bot”. Needless to say, this is completely pointless. Advanced bots like this cannot be recognized and if you are careful about how much you use it, they can’t detect anything.

St0rmshadow explained, how utterly and blatantly incompetent the Paris office is, when fighting bots. They do nothing. There is no automated bot detection, they don’t even know that it is simply possible to uncover a bot without the botter’s replay: you can download a replay from one of the people in the battle and then use replay freecam (legally) to check the botter out. According to St0rmshadow, noone does that. The king of incompetence of WG EU office seems to be a guy called “Decept1on”, who is formally responsible for the bot issue, who wasn’t even aware of the freecam option, when he spoke to him (it’s the same guy by the way involved in the Dakillzor case, for those who know).

Actually, Wargaming EU works directly against bot hunters. Check this out. As I wrote earlier, St0rmshadow is no longer a community contributor, because he got kicked out. This is an internal Wargaming letter by Alexis “Aodheus” Cretton, regarding this issue.

Hello everyone,

Just a short email to remind you all once again about our Community Contributors program & support given to their activities. As I hope you all know, Community Contributors should be selected with extra care, and our support only given to those who are truly promoting and supporting positive aspects of our games.

For this reason, this responsibility falls into a Community Managers’ role rather than a Community Coordinators’. That being said, we also know some teams, like the German team, are currently lacking a Community Manager.

While I don’t mind and am actually supportive of any initiative to support our German contributors, I’d like to make sure you guys always check with other Community Managers regarding new contributors or any new activities undertaken by a contributor.

For example, we came across this program today which is a perfect example of an activity a contributor should not do, and that we should not ever support nor promote:

(link to deleted St0rmshadow’s thread about bot hunting)

I would very much appreciate if this could be looked into so that we can not only shut down this program but also explain why we do not and cannot support such activity. If there are any doubts regarding this last point, feel free to ask me and I’ll explain the issues I see in this.

Thank you very much,
Alexis Cretton

Other this this guy using the same greeting at me (ugh), you can clearly see that Wargaming is not interested in supporting bot hunting. I am sure they will moan about naming and shaming and all, but the cold hard truth is, there are bots out there, that have been uncovered, convicted and mass-reported and they are still running around. This guy ran for thousands of battles (7000 according to St0rmshadow) with a bot, was reported many times and only recently he was not permabanned – no, his account was just rest. Another blatant case is this guy – account created on 19.1.2014, he already has 2237 battles.

At this moment, botting is viable and safe way of “playing”, at least on EU server.


So, are you shocked? I know I was (not by WG EU incompetence, that comes as given, rather by the numbers). Or perhaps you are not surprised at all? Lots of things make sense, don’t they. If there are 100k accounts using the first type of bot out there, who knows how many of these things are really out there? 200k? Half a mil? Suddenly, all those unheard desperate cries for support, “camping” teammates and other screwups make more sense, don’t they?

It is clear that something has to be done. Other games solve this issue differently. World of Warcraft actually has a tool, that scans the active memory for bot programs. Botters are swiftly and permanently banned (within hours) – this strict system was implemented as a response to an insane plague of bots (some of you might remember the “underground miners” and other stuff) and Blizzard managed to stem the tide by draconic punishments.

It would be wise to implement such a tool also. It is absolutely clear that manual checking (along with the legendary WG EU staff clumsiness) will not help in any way to change the situation. Strangely enough, according to St0rmshadow, other servers do not have this problem on such a scale, so it IS possible to fight it. By the way, for Russian viewers, St0rmshadow and his Russian colleague made a Warpack presentation. Unfortunately only in Russian.


180 thoughts on “Bots – Introduction to the Menace

  1. -can move around and shoot enemies, it uses a “smart” system aimbot (weakspots)

    Now i want bots in my team

      • I have got killed in my slow arties by bots so many times and my 45% WR teammates just did nothing. (Yeah, I play on CN server) Enemy bots even managed to SUCCESSFULLY capped our base once!

      • I had a bot on my team that acted like the Churchill VII on my team once. He just sat at the spawn, but he did more damage than 1/2 of the team.

      • Um..the 45% players ARE bots. I mean really, do you even expect to a bot to have over 52% win rate and over 1000 eff? I, personaly, dont, regardless of their efficenty (aim at the weakspots, etc)

        • Bots get 45% or under WR, but not all 45% players are bots. Some are real noobs that shoot HE shells in Lowe because “it’s the only way to deal damage”, and uses the 105mm derp on Pershing because “it’s the largest caliber gun”. I would rather have highly effective bots **on some maps** than having those noobs in our team.

  2. Once I thought calling some players bot is insult. Now I think calling them bot is high praise.

  3. Well, seeing Tankleader C bot having superior skill and gameplay to around 70% of playerbase is the worst part in this whole thing.

    Dont get me wrong, I despise botting scum, but it seems that having a few of those on your team is better than having random team full of red barons “playing for fun” and shooting you or the birds O_o

    Really depressing.

    • I sadly agree… The only positive thing about the article is that for the most part you don’t have to worry about somebody botting in the SPGs. For now…

      • SPG bot’s will never come. That is impossible to program as it requires predicting enemy movemant, 100% aiming, choosing best targets, good map positioning, relocating and so much more …

        • Lol why not? Humans can’t predict enemy movement 100% accuratly either but they play SPGs anyways. Not to mention since arty “nerf” people are not afraid of artys any more and make childlish easy stationary targets, some campers don’t move even if they are shoot at. Choosing best targets? Most of arty players, actually most of all players on all tank types have no idea how to pick target properly. Good map positioning? Same situation lawl. Relocating? Most of players stopped relocating at all since arty changes. Some people don’t even relocate after being hit by counter arty splash.

        • It could be done – it’ll just require a lot more time and effort than most people are willing to commit, not to mention that at first it wouldn’t be particularly effective, but nevertheless it’s possible.

    • I’m confused, if you’re not playing for fun, why the heck are you playing a computer game? Your health? Please don’t say that your sense of self worth is tied into your winrate, because THAT would be TRULY depressing.

      Everyone’s got just as much right to play the game as you do. Whatever XVM says about their playing habits.

      • —I’m confused, if you’re not playing for fun, why the heck are you playing a computer game?

        IMHO, people who use bots are
        - either kids who want a shortcut/save cash, and that is more rare, as most kids are competitive as hell, and will learn&improve fast enough, OR
        - people who create accounts for sale.

        I wasn’t aware of this second option until a mate who freelances on similar stuff told me: you get a bot, pull up enough battles on several accounts with it to level up to the sought after tanks (easily done in a week), then play yourself to fix the stats. And you end up with several accounts that have 1-2 tier10 tanks and a 53-55% WR (easily achievable by any unicum by playing certain tanks), each worth what… 20-50 euros? End result= 200 euros for a week or less of “work”, and that’s serious money in most Balkan states and the majority of Eastern Europe.

      • Congrats, you are one of those I would rather replace with Tankleader C anytime of the day.

        To answer your well-thought-out question:

        I play TO HAVE FUN, with that fun being winning, doing damage and killing as much reds as possible, either solo or trolling around with clan mates (thats the best part of it – if it werent for them, I would have probably quit by now).
        After a rough day, only a handfull of things can get my mood up – having a beer or two, having a laugh on TS and blowing tenks over internetz being one of them.
        Pure, unadulterated fun.

        You on the other hand “play for fun”, not doing anything of the above, but instead shooting birds, “protecting arty” with your light tank, scouting with heavy tank, driving with your back or side exposed to the enemy and similar hurr-durr-I-playz-for-fun-you-noob stronk ideas.

        From my POV, you are not really having fun, since I have never played like that (even when I was a total begginer, I still tried to do my best), but I can also understand you cant see how those of us, who PLAY TO HAVE FUN, actually have fun, since you never played like that as well.

        So, “have fun” doing whatever you do battle after battle – after all, it is “your right” – but dont get all emo when you are called out for it, or even worse, when a game bot is better than you <3

        • lol, you make a lot of unfounded assumptions about me here, but that’s alright, I’ve clearly offended your elitism, so I can expect a certain amount of irrational presumptuous hate and projection. You’re forgiven.

          For the record, I platoon with Clanmates, I constantly evolve my tactics and whilst I abjectly REFUSE to play in order to grind efficiency ratings, I do play to WIN. This includes doing things that are incompatible with stat-farming, such as taking a shot to save a friendly, targeting a threat above an easy kill, ‘fighing to engage.’ eg. Engaging enemy tanks without hope of doing much damage, but knowing that you can distract them long enough for your team to gain a tactical edge and simply survive as long as you can to buy that time. A farmer would never do that, they’re only interested in the damage and kills they can get for themselves.

          That’s besides the point though. This idiotic idea you and many other players seemed to have formed that winning and fun are mutually exclusive, that only the very best should be allowed to play with them, that it’s the Elite “US” vs. the drooling masses who exist to embarass your winrate which is causing the deep pool of resentment and negativity which you chose to vent in my direction.

          It is really, truly sad that a game designed for entertainment and recreation in the spirit of competitive sportsmanship has allowed its community to devolve into such sad and detestable behaviours and attitudes.

          • As much as your tears are delicious, it seems I will need a bucket this time.

            There, much better.

            You were saying?

  4. Damn, bots that move intelligently and can aim at weakspots? That’s definitely better than 90% of the community.

  5. Now those who do not know where to download a bot, have a good comprehensive guide. in Argentina we say “never teach fools” (No avives giles)

    • Well, 100k licensed (paid) accounts already active, so it doesn’t make any difference IG, but it’ll force WG EU office to respond to it by some other way than brushing the problem under rug.

    • Well, there is that, but it didn’t prevent botting by denying it and sweeping it under rug. Now there is hard evidence to prove it, so they have to respond to it by doing their actual work they got hired for.

  6. thanks for the time to explain this SS!
    but will WG even bother with bots? even after this “uncovering”?

    • IMHO that answer is quite obvious, sadly… but I might be proven wrong

      • It’s mostly EU server problem, as SS said.

        *sigh* they could stop sucking each others dicks at WG EU office and actually work.

        • but that is how you become a part of wg staff by sucking dicks and liking asses really nice.

  7. Now I understand why there are so many absurd campers….

    This is very important issue, imagine there are also “self-made” bots out there too.

  8. Ha and who has tinfoil hat now? I knew (and wrote before many times) about bots that have weakspots programmed and bots which can follow the lemming train but seems like it’s actually even worse (or better in terms of how good bots are). And WG doing nothing isn’t rly a supraise is it? I can remeber them claiming warpack mod doesn’t work pfff. If you have enough experience, you can detect bots/cheats with bare eye with very good accuracy, but since WG hires idiots who have no clue about anything in the world (how many fails this week?) not to mention WoT (hell even some minor developers have no clue about game mechanics and related stuff). Once again WG proves that succes of WoT is pure luck and they are just bunch of clueless arrogant commies.

    • First off, as it was mentioned many times, it’s the WG EU office. EU as in “on European server” as in “NOT IN COMMIE RUSSIA”. You are either a troll or a redneck, either way you’re wrong.

  9. if the number of licenses is so high, (obviously not all licenses used at a same time but still) and considering how many battles those guys play. I cant help but ask myself, how much botters are there on average in each battle? all this info makes it apear as it can be easily 1 or 2 every single game, perhaps eaven more,…

    or am i overestimating stuff here?

    • More like underestimating. 1-2 every single game are primitive bots which just stay on cap and turn their turrets. Add more sophisitcated bots to that.

    • Nope. First of all, you dont use bot to play 100% games on your account. You use it to gring low tier tanks and boring ones that you dont want to play. Or you use bot when you dont have time to play yourself, but you want to make progress in game so then you use bot.
      If there are for example 300k bots on EU server, then that doesnt mean they are all the time online. I would use bot on my account only from friday to monday due to retarded quality of games on weekend, and on work days i would play myself.

      • Well, I’d never use a bot, and the attitude of people like you is the reason bots exist in the first place. If a game is not fun, don’t play.
        If you have to resort to getting a bot in order to advance in a game to a point there it will allegedly become more fun, that means a) you’re doing something wrong, thus need to find the fault and fix it, OR b) the game is not put together well enough to deserve your time. In both cases, a bot is not the answer.

  10. The problem is that a lot of current missions from WG are incredibly ridiculous and would require devoting all your waking hours to making it to the end, WG is practically encouraging bots with these ridiculous missions which seem tailored made for bots (get X amount XP, play X amount battles, win X amount amount of battles etc.).

    • And how exactly do you imagine bots getting into Top10 by XP in every battle they play to get any benefits from these missions?
      They may be good, but definetly not so good.

      • I beg to differ, having seen some of the people playing t8 premiums. A half-decent bot can surpass them anytime. Someone here mentioned Jingles and his last Good, Bad and Ugly 7 video, and the Lowe player in it. I suggest you watch it. It will open your eyes as to how colossally wrong you are :)

    • If you want to use bots you will find them without this article. But there are a lot of players out there with no clue about what happening – but wondering what kind of players they have in their team.

      And as paying customer (for a great game – not to forget) I want to be as safe as possible from cheaters. And I want see some action from the publisher – but nothing happens.

      • I agree with Astronus – if a player is interested in using a BOT program then they will have found ways to get it already.

        I guess it could encourage players to try out a BOT but it seems that the decent ones require money on a subscription basis. However, it is probably beter for the WoT community to know how widespread BOTting is and the fact that Wargaming does little to police such things (why does that not come as a surpise to us?).

  11. I don’t understand the mindset of these botter types, it does however make clear that some of the players I have seen are indeed mindless and/or brainless. Well played WG, well played!

  12. Okey that makes now perfect sense if some bad player just wont aswer to anything like why he did nothing and didnt help. I thought that bots are totally brainless. So its more likely i have played with far more bots than i thought.

  13. Honestly, I’d rather have a team of competent bots than some of the morons that play…

  14. Thx for info SS & SS I had no idea about this shit.
    I believe that this article will help to catch lot of this cheating bastards.

  15. on the plus side however, i am starting to think the average IQ of a wot player is higher, given the fact that most wich i tought where stupid players, turn out to be bots

  16. Well from what I remember the bots were ever present in WoW. Actually what Blizzard did against them was the change of the economy. They made materials grinding less profitable and put more rewards for specific quests. The price of gold was falling down and bots were less annoying. Most of the people used only fishing bots.

    Scanning user processes is not reliable because the first thing you do is to rename the bot program name. And you can’t check if the input is generated by program or user.

    So if WG wants to do something against bots than lets change the reward system. If the player does 0 dmg give them nothing even for victory. That doesn’t solve the problem of an intelligent bot but well, sometimes afkers are worse than bots.

    • Only scanning process names is a seriously flawed way to do it, anyone with half a brain would compare the exe to known bots and bam all mainstream bots stopped dead in their tracks… pretty easy really

      • You would like to compare the whole files on local system? Than its easy to add some patch to the file every time you install it.

  17. Wonder why WG just hasn’t bought the source code from one of the better bots and actually makes a service out of it.

    I mean imagine that, WG could monetize this out of the ass offering some sort of leveling service (which only goes with premium account)

    • That’s what i call a mindset of a true EconomyGenius or a true EvilLord…
      Pls, just shut up and don’t give WG such idea… they may actually fall for it….

    • Typical botter attitude right there…

      Why would you want WG to give you a bot? I think what your really asking for is a hand out of stacks of free XP and gold with a prem account? yep, botting tomato definately detected

  18. First of all thx for the article pretty informative and also big thx to st0rmshadow for the effort he puts on the bot hunting
    onto the subject…..
    is it wierd that many F2P games suddenly after sometime of release got bombed with bots???
    one case of bot infestations and hax was DarkOrbit
    the game was fine until bots starting to apear at first where not spoted but as the numbers grow they are becoming more obvious people where complaining but the game modorators on forum and on support where just shitting high and having a lovely view of the moaning and rage about bots/hax’s
    cause it started with bots and then moved to hax’s
    seems like F2P goo pass throw that stage of bots infestation for an unkhown reason(well there is a reason the team of developting those bots maybe are from inside and they make money as those is allowed well let’s say they gonna make tones of euros from that while the bots infestation spreads and becomes more known) and as it seems from the Failgaming EU office possition that prepare for these bots cases to be even more common…..soo be prepaired for more of those things becoming more and more visable….

    - added new feature (for historical reasons) to the premium account – bot mode

  20. So it seems that guy should change his name to Alexis Crétin, fetch a broomstick and start doing something useful…

    What if WG can identify bots en-masse but simply doesn’t want to use the banhammer because the bot user base has very profitable premium account percentage and they don’t want to scare them off?

    Other explanations are that they simply can’t or they don’t give a damn.

    Either way, look at the bright side – we’re just only a few steps away from a good offline singleplayer mode :D

    • I’ve seen at certain times of the day, longer waits to get into games at particular tiers, and noticed more bots in those games. The longer wait was not due to too many players, but too few I think. As a result I thought that some of the “AI” players were put there by WG, so that you would not wait for ever. Now I think the reason they don’t go after Bots is because they are useful to WG EU. In busy times when there are thousands of players, no one notices another idiot. But at quiet times, when the kids and dads are at school or work, a few AFK’s, a few bots, help pad out the numbers. They’d rather you had a game, then wait and quit in frustration, a negative trend that might see the player try something else. Like any cheat, it will ruin the game, both for the players and ultimately for WG itself.

  21. I hope, i sincerely do, that WG minsk takes note of the complete and utter Crap WG EU branch is and starts making changes

    this, alone, is enough to cause a shitstorm, and well deserved for it.

    Grats SS and Stormshadow for pointing this out, it takes a lot of time courage and effort to uncover the truth and demonstrate the shortcomings of a large company incompetence

  22. If the head office isn’t as accepting of botting, why aren’t they sending angry letters to WG EU telling them to shape up?

    Or do they not care about having their product turn to shit outside of the RU servers?

  23. Just another example of WG’s stupidity. People will use bots for as long as the game rewards players for doing nothing.
    One can just pick a tank and sit on base doing nothing and the game will reward them, even if a little. They get good XP if the team wins, even if they never fire a single shell. On the other hand, players who actually did something get a slightly higher XP than a bot. You don’t need to be genius to see that this is just plain wrong, and stupid.

    A game’s economy overhaul is needed. First, reward scouting and damage taken properly. Then simply vastly increases repairs costs for all tanks, and buff the income of everything that helps the team. A Maus bounced 40.000 worth of damage on top of its own hit points? The guy deserves a good XP and credit profit. He sat in the back and did nothing, make him pay 100.000 credits and get 0 XP.
    You get rid of bots and baddies on top tiers at the same time, and welcome to a better game.

  24. One thing I’d like to point out, echoing some of the sentiments expressed above.

    While I agree with the philosophical premise that botting ought to be forbidden and bot users punished to the full permissible extent (i.e., banning them without further ado), I must say that in practical terms, botting as such, to me at least, does not constitute an absolute problem.

    My beef is with everything that makes the game less enjoyable, and prime among these are bad players. To me, bots are a problem to the extent that they are bad players, not so much to the extent that they are bots. If it were ever possible for a bot to be a good player — that is, if it approached the ideal of a true A.I. — I don’t think it would be too much of an issue. On the flipside, a bot might theoretically become too good, but that is unlikely. While one might possibly pound superior techniques for one-on-one combat into it, I doubt the problem of battlefield analysis could ever be adequately solved by anything else than a living brain — or at least not by something that’s being hacked together by the kind of people that make these bot programs. It would require too many resources.

    Further, I disagree with the idea to have WoT software scan the processes — or indeed anything — on my computer. That’s an unacceptable invasion of privacy, and one of those paths paved with good intentions that lead to the proverbial hell.

    In my opinion, slow, grinding work on the bot problem would be adequate, even if the perception were that it doesn’t stem the tide. What we need first and foremost is an efficient way of detecting and weeding out unsophisticated bots, something that does require but a minimum of human interaction. The more sophisticated ones can be left to manual analysis for the time being. To the extent that they become so good as to be undetectable, then, as exposed above, they conversely become less of a problem.

    One thing to keep in mind is that people do bot for the same reasons people do anything: because they expect a profit from it (in whatever shape). It is not necessary to catch every bot user. It is enough to disincentivise botting. Botters bot to grind tanks, I would expect. So taking that reward from them (by banning or even just resetting their accounts) removes the incentive, and hence is perfectly adequate. No need to get all jihad’ed over this. Remember that bot program sellers (free bots are unlikely to pose a threat in the long term) are looking to make money. If a critical minority of bots are caught, enough to cast a sufficient doubt for any prospective bot user that he will get his money’s worth out of the bot program, the problem will be tackled. Not solved — again, the world in general doesn’t need final solutions — but tackled.

    Now, to the problem of the mentally challenged playing WoT….

    • How the hell do you expect to find bots when you dont want the game to scan processes ?

      • Many Korean online games install keyloggers to prevent bots. Botting industry’s response? They hire unemployed youth in China.

        This is not directly related to gaming, but Korea has made it a habit of installing keyloggers and “security” mechanisms everywhere, and when the server is hacked, all hell breaks loose.. a few weeks ago, more than 10 million credit card numbers (that’s almost every adult working Korean) were stolen from major companies and are on the loose. This is a kind of online security culture we should avoid elsewhere..

  25. “Also, currently, no bot can operate artillery other than in TD mode.”

    This statement is simply false. A friend of mine wrote a bot specifically for this purpose, and he let it play about 20.000 arty battles undetected. Nowadays he doesn’t play anymore, but the account is still active.

    BTW his winrate wasn’t even off that much, he killed about 0.8 tanks per battle and, no we’re not finished: he also programmed it to blindfire. It made him about 2 million of free xp and of course got all the arty.

    edit: let me add: he wrote it as a proof of concept. We challenged him and told him his account was going to be banned soon after, but he won.

    • Of course he did.

      You know what is even more amazing?

      My friend won a lottery, he was always lucky and he knew he was, he was boasting about the win and how lucky he is so me and some friends dared him to give all the winnings to the charity and try to win again if he is so lucky.

      Imagine this, he actually did it, he gave all the money out and what is even more surprising 3 weeks later on Saturday he won again. That was really amazing, but after that we couldn’t make him shut up about how lucky he is.

  26. Have a habit to observe teammates 20 secs after start of match.

    1) suspected that at the start of match those who drop gunbarrel at max depression are bots – now im sure, thnx SS and SShadow for this.

    2) those who shoot in cap circle (or in first 10-15 secs of columns forming) have my utter despise and little to none support later in match.

    3) those who run over boxes in cap have my respect and full support in match.

    4) clan recruiters-advertisers – see point 2.

    • Regarding #1, then I must be a bot because about half the games I’ll hit “Battle” then go to a webpage or something until I hear the countdown end and “let’s go”. So, does that mean when my barrel drops for a few seconds that I’m a bot?

      Another issue. Most of the posters are idiots. They complain about “noob” and ” crap” players. They aren’t the problem. The problem is so many players have played the game so long and so much that they’ve gotten really, really good at it. Not every has that much time to play. And even those who do, like me, we’ll never reach unicum status for various reasons. The success of a few players have given many unrealistic expectations of every player. Then again, if every player was equally skilled everyone would sit at about 49% WR and would have have about the same damage and kill ratio. And then hear the bitching, moaning and complaining.

      • 1. Isnt true, cause if you dont move your crosshair, then it is automatically pointed down.

        2. Sometimes if you going to desktop, while the game is loading, and you come back, you can shoot accidentally.

    • I drop my gun to max depression during the first few seconds after countdown to give the impression I’m AFK, as it attracts less attention from the idiots who call out follow me. In that time I study the map and see were the “team” is going, and were there are gaps that I will then cover. Not all gun barrel drops are bots.

  27. And if you check some of those bots, like tankleader, you need to have either prem acc or have gold on your account to use the bot. So in order to have these “better” bots, you need to pay WG&that bot site to get the bot = WG makes money so people can bot.

    EDIT: Also pretty easy to find those bots, most of them got pretty big amount of games with eff below 40 and win% under 50%. Then just look how they play and there you go, a bot. with 5 or whatever complaints you got, aint enough to report them all, usually use those reports in the first game of the day.

  28. I gathered a list of nick names of people who were botting over year a go. I just used Tankleader forums for a week and I managed to gather quite nice list of people. WG EU support wasn’t interested :)

  29. Also is there a way to define lag from a bot? As I’ve had lag at times which would alter my movement (making it so I can’t stop, turn left and right etc) which would make it look like I would be using a bot. – Names Pichu_Trainer ^^

    • well these nasty lag spikes that are happening at EU servers maybe be due to the bots….
      i remember on DarkOrbit another game which was infeasted by bots the lag was just unberable

  30. this WG EU is run by some very mediocre corporate C level employees,
    not only they lack technical skills and understand of the game they seem to work for they are bureaucratic and stupid in nature, vengeful and spiteful, these are the worst of any employees.

    instead of hiring some clearly talented persons with passion for the game like SS and S0torm guy, these 2 alone run the the entire fucking Paris office.

    the only good thing Paris office is doing is making stupid videos of themselves, when you look at these vids you see a bunch of morons that clearly are out of place.

    • The problem is the Paris office. Their 35 hour week, long lunch breaks and low productivity. An office in Berlin or London? it would be better.

      • I keep repeating this for months, but whatever: I think Paris office should be moved to Siberia. Well, at least those who work in this wg branch should be moved and instead of working for gaming company they should work in coal/gold/uranium mine. Then wg should hire people who can do something else than suck quasars dick.

  31. WarGaming and its employees are retarded? Whatttttttttttt?!? Next, we’ll find out that water is wet and we landed on the Moon!

  32. Shocking. I can understand incompetence, but wilfully ignoring a problem and punishing people who actually try to help, that is just beyond belief.

  33. The Bot endemic. It could be worse though seeing these numbers and that new bot program aka TankLeader Version C is crazy pretty good. SS, I have to say great find with the help of this guy that helped you with the correct information aka St0rmshadow. I have to give that guy some props in showing how many and how insane some bot programs is.

    I can believe how stupid and incompetent the EU Office is, expect for a select few people there, know what they are doing. Excluding the guy in charge of the EU Office that is…

    I decided to create an account because of all of these articles, this one made me go like “WTF!? That’s a lot of Botters on the EU Server.”

  34. Why doesn’t WG sue the bot makers and collect all their profits? After all, the bots are technically hacking WG’s property, therefore all the money the bot maker earn should be given to WG as compensation.

    Now, the scary thing is, if these Bots start running platoons as a unified unit.

    • This is not hacking at all.
      Botting and Hacking are completely different.

      It would be possible to make a Hack that runs as a bot, but that is not what this article is about. There is nothing Illegal about it, this is not “theft”. I don’t support it, but I do understand what it is.

  35. The point being this is open secret. Players (like me) understood long time ago that reporting bots is a waste of click. Unless a bot annoys any of the WG employees nothing is done/will be done besides bare minimum. Now, one could take this report and ask either SerB or Storm if this is true, but we all know what will be the reply. WG NEVER acknowledges their mistakes (remember the stealth edits?) and therefor there is nothing to fix. Im playing less and less WoT because of mainly two reasons: bots and WGs policy to not restrict the sale of high tier premium tanks to everyone (case in point: Mighty Jingles The Good, The Bad and The Ugly 7). I dont expect WG to do anything about this because new players are worth more than old players. Its really that simple.

  36. I would not be surprised, if there was an actualy bot made by WG employee… For extra cash WG could earn



    New meme! Repost on wg eu forums if you like (preferably in a shitstorm thread about issue presented in this article).

  38. WoTEx 3.2 isn’t hard to find, but apparently it is scary good.

    But if 90% of the playerbase had this, the game would be better indeed.

  39. Suddenly, all those unheard desperate cries for support, “camping” teammates and other screwups make more sense, don’t they?
    This make so much sense now. I will just stop using chat overall looks like.

  40. So, from now on, instead of yelling “Learn to play, noob!” at bad players, we should say “download a bot programm!”

  41. Like some other posters said, the problem is not the bots themselves. The problem is that the game rewards total failure. That alone is a valid reason for the existence of bots.

  42. Well.. My theory is that Warpack and Tankleader are related to WG some way. Otherwise those would have been shut out for long time already.

    Extra money is extra money?

  43. Recently did a comparison of extremely obvious bot numbers between servers compared to player numbers, SEA/Asia was the highest by a long shot. There’s a few serially named botters (jirofukuwot comes to mind, currently up to jirofukuwot7 with ~1,850 batlles) that make new accounts and get to many thousands of battles before they are finally stopped.

    Asia office claims it’s because they need lots of evidence before anyone can be permabanned so they are really slow at processing. It however didn’t stop them from permabanning one account with an obvious joke post about selling his account for $1.99 (doing a Zardnaar). Obviously because the botters generate income, they aren’t seen as that important a problem.

    • Its because they tried to ban a “bot” and got burnt when it turns out it wasnt… Retarded yes.

      Seriously, Did we expect any less from ASIA when it is where most bot programs for a majority of games are made.

  44. WG EU just runs like how WG SEA runs: “Why ban bots when they compose a big portion of your population and you (WG) are being fed by real $$.”

    If you people see WoT Asia, bots are aplenty, and it’s the same case as EU, WG simply won’t do anything about it.

    • Explains why I can get multiple 8+ losing streaks every single bloody time I play. Turns out that the opponent players (or bots) are better than my all human tomato teams.

  45. I wonder if there is such a thing as a rage bot? Is like a normal bot, but rages in chat at different players which it detects are failing. :-D

  46. Wargaming should ban all noobs and pay the best bot coders to create sophisticated AI controlled tanks that are fun to play with. :P

    As long as players are funneling increasingly more money into WoT, WG has no reason to make any expenses in order to improve their game. But that’s an old truth. The only exception is a serious competitor with a superior product. Thankfully there has emerged one recently.

    • Actually it would be interesting to incorporate some of the AI development behind these bots into various PvE events (such as the White Tiger event on the RU server), or even a separate single-player “campaign” mode.

  47. It seems like these bots could be viable control systems for bonafide military drones. Maybe we can get rid of the bot programs by giving them DARPA contracts. XD

  48. geee, you’re just finding out WG, and not only WG EU, gives a shit about the bot problem?!?!
    for years now, WG did nothing to eradicate the problem – “we have tools”, they have nothing, it’s a lie!

    why, you may ask, WG does nothing against botting? because even bots contribute to active players
    how will the community feel when they got the word ~30% of the active players are just bots … that doesn’t sound good at all, does it

  49. it’s very very simple.. as long the cash is rolling in, they don’t care a shit about it.. this world / business just everything is money driven, own interests and advantages count…

    you do something if you get disadvantages, and you do nothing much if the effort is not worth a slight disadvantage – very simple rules that apply to almost everything

    so is anybody – really wondering?!

    • Well, recently they did mention a PvE mode being developed, iirc on one of the Q&A … *runs from the tin-foil-hat barrage*

    • That would be a smart move actually (hell, that’s what I would do if I were in charge of WG), since not only would it remove the hundreds of thousands of bot accounts using them, but it would allow for greater potential to develop the game – maybe not a PvE mode right away, but it would certainly make it possible to create more indepth tutorials so that noobs that are first starting out don’t suck as badly and at least know some basic tactical concepts, like sidescraping and hulldown positioning, and remaining safe from artillery fire.

      • I wouldn’t call side-scraping basic.
        From my very small real-life sample I can tell you that players under 800 eff rating just know “front side is stronk side” and will only understand the most basic weak spot management like “don’t shoot at T-29 turret”.

        This is taken from a very small sample of players I phisically platoon side by side with, even basic angling and proper aiming is very hard to understand for casual players.

  50. “- it is possible to recognize by several distinct features, such as gundrop right after the countdown and by backing off a few meters when encountering unforeseen obstacles, such as other players (after backing off, it turns slightly and goes forward again)”

    Well, THAT explains a lot.

    • But but but, I like to drop my gun at the start so other players think I’m AFK and don’t lemming after me.

      Guess I better reprogram the bot … errmmm I mean change my habits. :p

  51. I work in security systems and I very surprise about the chat in this forum.

    All preoccupation of the players are about tomato player, well I tell you the problem goes further, if a program permits mods or other programs send him instructions without any check the problem reside in the security of yours accounts.

    For me reading this post tell me that in security matters WG is a big fail.

    In world of Warcraft the mod was prohibit because this one was a big security hole, it gave to the hackers a good path to hack accounts or personal data of his customers.

    If true that fishing is the most famous way to gain access to account given false e-mails but there is other ways.

    source :

    Retail More: Hotels Hacking Credit Card Fraud
    Hotels Company Hacked, Exposing Consumer Credit Card Info

    04 Feb 14 Adobe Systems Inc. is urging users of its Flash Player software to upgrade to a newer version released today. The company warns that an exploit targeting a previously unknown and critical Flash security vulnerability

    I think all complains about tomatoes players (same as me) should not be the first of your preoccupations.

      • OMG and he bought the low-tier premiums. Not before long we’re gonna see this guy “driving” a Lowe or T34 with his 36% WR and really? Didn’t even know there could be negative rating. I’n not sure though if he’s a mentally inapt retard or has a fail bot.

        • Or this account is being used to do the probe of bots, you mustn’t understate this kind of programs they give a profit to their creators and they can spend money to probe the their program efficacy in real play.

    • wg simply doesnt care at all.

      -trollplatoons? allowed
      -intentional suicide? allowed
      -bots? allowed
      -tk? mostly allowed(just dont do it in flags, and not too many shots),

      at the end you must be too obvious to get banned BY REPORTS and since players only have 5 per day if you arent too obvious people wont do it.

      if you pay(most of these bots probably do) wg doesnt give a flying f about it.

      • I dunno if WG care about it or not. it’s a question of money and profits.

        I tell you take a look to ISACA (CISM certificate) normative and you can find business risk analyst and control risk analyst, simplify (you can use too ITIL or ISO 27001):

        Risk = no profits (make controls)
        Risk = acceptable profits (no need controls)

        Only make risk control with attacks can risk the business because if you go to the CEO with you must spend your money for nothing sure he going on tell you get lost.

        Best Regards.

  52. This article is like Morpheus giving Neo the Truth Pill .

    Lots of things make sense now . I know i will be far less likely to get upset now when i see messed up behavior . I guess i must apologize to some Polish people . Truly i am sorry .

    I was upset with the the whole + 2 tier higher and no skill based MM but now all that is rendered almost meaningless considering this new level of scumfuckery !

    Sadly the only thing that will ever matter to devs is money ( understandable to be sure ) and no changes for the better will come while people continue to put up with this stuff . The only solution is ofc a monetary one , dont buy from any company a broken product .

    The bots remind me of a concept from Warhammer 40 k , the concept of “ Abominable Intelligence “ or maybe the banning of AI in Dune universe : “ Thou shall not make a machine in the likeness of the human mind “ .

    Seriously though , i for one have far more fun with a good single player game of exploration like Skyrim or some LAN competition between friends then with MMO ‘s . Multiplayer is fun if you know the players .

    As fucked as these bots are i can at least say one thing for WoT : Well at least is not EvE Online :) ha ha ha ha

    Dont buy from WG , better pay for your internet subscription instead and just go to some torrent site and get free good games . Fuck WG .

  53. Question @all:

    Could a solution be not to play random anymore?

    Just playing 7/42 and companies ofc with teamspeak, so you know that your team mates are real persons?

    • No, because this game (i.e. the company making it) relies on the random matches for income.
      As you probably know, the F2P model relies on the small percentage of players that pay to cover the expense of the game for the huge majority that doesn’t. People moving only to limited parts of the game would gradually kill it, as the elite section of the player base that “inhabits” those segments doesn’t actually need a premium account to be able to afford playing the game easily, ergo no income for the owners of the game.
      Randoms are a necessary evil, but that doesn’t mean the bots in them cannot be fixed. There are smarter and dumber solutions for that, but all can be made to work.
      The issue is Wargaming EU or any Wargaming affiliate segment WANTING to implement them. My opinion is they are too blinded by profit to understand that there are such types of profit that undercut the welfare of the company that is collecting the said profit.

  54. “Dnive/Dniwe – this one comes for free with Warpack (but that costs you 7 Euro per month). In connection with other Warpack software, it is deadly, it cheats and earns a lot of credits and XP. On tier 10 tank, it can score even around 3000 damage.”

    So it’s possible to CHEAT in WoT, and it’s not a hoax…

    • “So it’s possible to CHEAT in WoT, and it’s not a hoax…”

      I started posting about an advanced aim bot that I had found using google about a year and a half ago on the NA forums. The replies where the typical fanboi stuff… Server side game is impossible to cheat. We all now know that it’s simply not true.

      An aim bot that can selective target the most easily penned modules is possible client side. Not only possible but there are a few of them now. So it will get worse. Wait till you start getting ammo racked multi-times a game almost every game and tell me how much fun it’ll be to play.

  55. I play on all 3 servers. While I agree that EU is more infested it’s a serious problem on all servers. On RU and NA the bots seem to occur more often in the mornings with the players taking over the accounts and playing them later in the day. Winning games at these times often comes down to who has fewer bots on the team. Sad but true.

    Frankly AFKing and Botting are ruining my game play experience. I’d love to see them curb stomped. Wg just doesn’t seem very interested in fixing it. Even the simplest method of detection isn’t used… for example sort the hall of fame by games played in one day and ban everyone with an unnatural number of battles with little to no damage. They, at the very least, catch the stupid botters doing this… but even this low bar, easily done method isn’t used by WG. This brings me to the simple conclusion that they just don’t care….

  56. Frankly, i don’t feel bothered by the presence of bots.

    They are more likely to be in the enemy team (15 slots available) than in mine (12-14 slots available).

    So some of the tanks driving around are AI/NPCs. Why would i care?

  57. Pingback: Bots – Why are they bad and Why doesn’t WG fight them? | For The Record

  58. Pingback: [MMORPG]World of Tanks by Hellsfury - Page 234 - TribalWar Forums

  59. Pingback: Hey guys, we were featured on FTR

  60. Bots? sure. First year I played this game I spent a little, I was winning a lot went up to 54% (looking back my guess is that I was “allowed” to win) but then came long losing streaks even though I was playing better than ever. That is when I began to realize that too many weird things were happening in the game for them to be just by chance, so second year I only played because I was thinking of the money I spent (even though it wasn’t much, still I regret ever spending anything!) and also to observe if the bizarre things in game continue to happen, they did. My win rate was now just above 51%.

    It’s not just bots, it’s greedy evil power-tripping assholes and some of them could even be reading this. And the bots… maybe WG uses them to reach there stupid bs “World Record” or just to fill up there servers.

    After that one year of spending nothing on the game I was content and saved some money in the process to buy a car! (although I was already saving for it long before) So to all you who have been scammed or are being scammed into spending anything on this bs game save it for something else, something real and you will be content thinking of the time playing this game as a complete waste coz no matter what its just a game controlled by power-tripping assholes! play the game for free FOREVER and you can tell them to starve then eat shit and die ;-{

  61. Pingback: Ботоводство в World Of Tanks. Главная проблема нашей игры. | VODaWOT - лучшее видео, реплеи, гайды, обучение из онлайн-игры World Of Tanks

  62. Pingback: WG EU: “There are no bots” | For The Record