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On Botting and Classic Concerns  

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Czar
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 Czar
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Well it seems to me that given the possibility WoW classic becomes enthralling for a lot of people, given the games comeback and newfound popularity as a hardcore classic MMO, and the fact that the servers are launching fresh for the first time since the release of WoW itself there is reason to think about the economy that will be born anew in two weeks. Quite literally the economy that will be on a few high pop (now pretty much all servers) will be born and maintained by Classic player and the hardcore nature will make it very serious down the line, since the present economy on most servers has been around for too long.

So it seems that the economy of Herod, Faerlina and many others will be on the minds of a lot of people. Raiding and rare item collection will be a thing. So will WoW tokens - with a high degree of probability they will probably add these soon if not in a later release phase. Thus people are concerned about botting. Let me give you a brief summary why its not really a concern or deal breaker, if your considering retail over economical reasons.

Current state:
Its not easy at all at the moment to bot. New encryption and Warden being active makes it all but impossible. Just search "wow botting bfa" and you will see very quickly that botting is dead because variable encryption and hash checking by Warden has rendered hooking impossible to achieve without detection and a following ban wave. Most people who find working bots, post "It works lmaoalamolamo" then they get banned in a wave 2 weeks afterward. Most bots are thus scams at the present moment for a quick buck.

In lay terms this means that bots no longer have "eyes" - Warden blinds them faster than boosted rouges - by preventing bots from having any access to functions in the game (ie object render-er for detecting stuff like herb nodes being rendered by the game engine and even the games internal coordinate system, which is used by bots for navigation by sending clicks to coordinates; a hack workaround that uses coords system hooks and movement-by-mouse hooks to effectively send mouse clicks to coords in game rather than on screen, a big brain workaround back in the day).

Why its highly unlikely there are bots or will be bots in the near 2 years+ :
Making a bot now would be equivalent to trying to make a robot that drives a car without knowing the angle the steering wheel is currently turned to or something like the speedometer readings. Which would mean that bot development rests ENTIRELY on computer vision aka vision systems which most bot developers are simply incapable of implementing, since most developments in the sphere are SOTA-ed every 2 months, require processing power beyond most computers people who play wow have, and these developments in CV are privatized and patented, since theres more money in working for Tesla, or really any major automotive manufactured/tech (aka Uber) than there is to dev CV for video game bots...

These 3 factors alone make an extremely nullled chance that bots encroach on Classic WoW.

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Linguine
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I can neither verify nor deny the accuracy of information, but I enjoyed this post.

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Black Monarch
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Did we really need a new thread for this?

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Kazukii
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The same Fishing bot that's been around forever will probably still work.
Warden doesn't know. If GM's are watching though they have a few tricks up their sleeve.

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Czar
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 Czar
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The same Fishing bot that's been around forever will probably still work.
Warden doesn't know. If GM's are watching though they have a few tricks up their sleeve.

My google searching seems to come up empty, all the older existing bots are either keyloggers or the website is offline/non-reachable. I dont really see people pushing fish bots from my searching. I also did some reading on a few and it seems that they rely on large bobber mods which dont exist in Classic...

Although I do agree that fishing is one of the only weaknesses at the moment since its easier from a coding point of view.

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Kolvacs
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Neat.

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Kaiju
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Can largely agree that botting won't be an issue when it comes to memory hooking. Though It may be possible to train an AI to do it purely with visual inputs.

Obviously that's a much larger undertaking, and won't be effective for a some time given the complexity.

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Nenski
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Here we go again

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Stfuppercut
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Interesting post. Went to youtube. Typed in "battle for azeroth botting".

First result:

annnnnnd thats about how much effort it took to find a working bot in BFA. I feel like we've done this before though...

For those of us who still play retail, botting is not all too uncommon. Seeing a skinning bot or herb bot is not incredibly rare if you know what to look for. The difference is that gold doesnt really matter in retail so people will just casually bot to pay for their token and play for free. Classic will be different. Botting has the potential to be far worse.

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Czar
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 Czar
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annnnnnd thats about how much effort it took to find a working bot in BFA. I feel like we've done this before though...

I don't want to be condescending to you, but I feel like I need to drizzle on this parade of thoughts you wrote...
The above "bot" you mentioned, linked, has some problems with it. One, the link for the ACTUAL bot is longer active, in fact the weebly website for the whole operation is gone. Two, the previous major fishing bot prior to this had everyone using it banned. The "working bot" you linked is in fact non working cause you cant even buy it, and from the description it looks like it is using hooking, its written in C and every antivirus picks it up as a virus.. so there's that. Even if it was pixel based it seems the entire "bot" you mentioned is just leftover corpse of a program on the internet at the moment.

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Stfuppercut
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I don't want to be condescending to you, but I feel like I need to drizzle on this parade of thoughts you wrote...
The above "bot" you mentioned, linked, has some problems with it. One, the link for the ACTUAL bot is longer active...

Confirmed working within the past 2 weeks. It works. Botting is not uncommon in retail. You can regularly see bots running around and farming resources or skins. Sorry to rain on your parade :biggrin: .

Just send the guy a quick email and he gives you a free 1 month of service. Which happens to be about enough time to grind out 2-3 tokens. (A friend told me).

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Czar
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 Czar
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I am going to email this guy. Then dump whatever he sends me to assembler and look at what hes doing. I guess we will see.

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zuko3d
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Why its highly unlikely there are bots or will be bots in the near 2 years+ :
Making a bot now would be equivalent to trying to make a robot that drives a car without knowing the angle the steering wheel is currently turned to or something like the speedometer readings. Which would mean that bot development rests ENTIRELY on computer vision aka vision systems which most bot developers are simply incapable of implementing, since most developments in the sphere are SOTA-ed every 2 months, require processing power beyond most computers people who play wow have, and these developments in CV are privatized and patented, since theres more money in working for Tesla, or really any major automotive manufactured/tech (aka Uber) than there is to dev CV for video game bots...

These 3 factors alone make an extremely nullled chance that bots encroach on Classic WoW.

Actually things are not that bad (or good?). There are people with deep understanding of CV and that do play WoW. Ofc such people will get more money working for Tesla/Uber/whatever, but they might create a bot just for fun, as a "pet project". Some time ago I've created a resto-druid routine for HonorBuddy - it was very strong, much better them most players. And it wasn't for money, just for fun and curiosity.

Fishing bot is very easy to create with even basic knowledge of computer vision and bot creation (without memory editing and other "suspicious" stuff). Ok, blizzard scans processes, but this can be handled too.

Gathering bot will take a bit more time, but there are alreasy neural networks that are capable of segmentation of real-life road images. Given much better picture quality (then real-life photos) we can easily evaluate depth-(or range-)map from 2-3 consecutive frames captured from the screen. Thus navigation around obstacles won't be a serious pain too.

I can write some more thoughts if somebody is interested.

p.s. You must understand and remember that botting is against EULA, strongly prohibited and shouldn't be ever done to gain ANY kind of advantage. My interest here is purely academic as I'm developing autonomous self-controlled systems.

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Pippina
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Actually things are not that bad (or good?). There are people with deep understanding of CV and that do play WoW. Ofc such people will get more money working for Tesla/Uber/whatever, but they might create a bot just for fun, as a "pet project". Some time ago I've created a resto-druid routine for HonorBuddy - it was very strong, much better them most players. And it wasn't for money, just for fun and curiosity.

Fishing bot is very easy to create with even basic knowledge of computer vision and bot creation (without memory editing and other "suspicious" stuff). Ok, blizzard scans processes, but this can be handled too.

Gathering bot will take a bit more time, but there are alreasy neural networks that are capable of segmentation of real-life road images. Given much better picture quality (then real-life photos) we can easily evaluate depth-(or range-)map from 2-3 consecutive frames captured from the screen. Thus navigation around obstacles won't be a serious pain too.

I can write some more thoughts if somebody is interested.

p.s. You must understand and remember that botting is against EULA, strongly prohibited and shouldn't be ever done to gain ANY kind of advantage. My interest here is purely academic as I'm developing autonomous self-controlled systems.

It seems like the next step for bots to add to evade detection is to stack an AI chat bot on top of the gathering bot. The neural network based text generation stuff I have seen is getting pretty damn good, lol. I saw a bot that could generate a full 2-3 page essay just by giving it a couple of sentences to start with. Stack something like that on top of your bot so it can respond with non-canned responses if anybody tries talking to it and you're going to have a hell of a time knowing what's a bot and what is a human.

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Czar
Posts: 20
 Czar
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Why its highly unlikely there are bots or will be bots in the near 2 years+ :
Making a bot now would be equivalent to trying to make a robot that drives a car without knowing the angle the steering wheel is currently turned to or something like the speedometer readings. Which would mean that bot development rests ENTIRELY on computer vision aka vision systems which most bot developers are simply incapable of implementing, since most developments in the sphere are SOTA-ed every 2 months, require processing power beyond most computers people who play wow have, and these developments in CV are privatized and patented, since theres more money in working for Tesla, or really any major automotive manufactured/tech (aka Uber) than there is to dev CV for video game bots...

These 3 factors alone make an extremely nullled chance that bots encroach on Classic WoW.

Actually things are not that bad (or good?). There are people with deep understanding of CV and that do play WoW. Ofc such people will get more money working for Tesla/Uber/whatever, but they might create a bot just for fun, as a "pet project". Some time ago I've created a resto-druid routine for HonorBuddy - it was very strong, much better them most players. And it wasn't for money, just for fun and curiosity.

Fishing bot is very easy to create with even basic knowledge of computer vision and bot creation (without memory editing and other "suspicious" stuff). Ok, blizzard scans processes, but this can be handled too.

Gathering bot will take a bit more time, but there are alreasy neural networks that are capable of segmentation of real-life road images. Given much better picture quality (then real-life photos) we can easily evaluate depth-(or range-)map from 2-3 consecutive frames captured from the screen. Thus navigation around obstacles won't be a serious pain too.

I can write some more thoughts if somebody is interested.

p.s. You must understand and remember that botting is against EULA, strongly prohibited and shouldn't be ever done to gain ANY kind of advantage. My interest here is purely academic as I'm developing autonomous self-controlled systems.

I am interested to hear more actually, because I work in the field too. Mostly deep learning AI networks.

My chief angle is that the problem rests in interaction and hardware, not necessary in recognition. It is do-able to train a model on, say herb, CV and it will find nodes with almost guaranteed accuracy since exposure time is high (you can miss objects in 1-2 frames but 5 seconds worth of frames will yield everything you can find as you mentioned due to depth being very easy to handle/glean). But once you get that going, after a few hours of coding w/ pretrained recog, whats next? Well interaction. But its an interesting pathfinding problem I dont really know how to answer, hence its my angle that its a problem enough that it shifts possibility away from reality, as far as botting goes.

I totally agree with you regarding CV, but Blizzard proc scanning juke is not as easy as hash changing I think...

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