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No Fair Cheating

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"Don't even think about using auto-fire, or I'll know."

Many video games have measures built in to punish the player for cheating (whether by built-in cheat codes or external cheating/hacking devices).

These countermeasures can vary from simple messages and reminders that constantly remind (and hopefully embarrass) the player about not playing by the game's intended rules, to more serious measures like denying access to certain features (bonus content, achievements, etc.) while cheats are in effect. In extreme cases, the game can permanently 'brand' the player's save file with some kind of designation to indicate the use of cheat codes (some games can erase their save file outright).

Of course, the game's own AI is never penalized for cheating, because everybody knows The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard.

Subtrope of Earn Your Fun. Compare Easy-Mode Mockery, where the game just doesn't like you making it easier for yourself. Also related to some examples of Copy Protection, where the game punishes the player for pirating. May be a result of fine Developer's Foresight.


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    Action Adventure 
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Zelda II: The Adventure of Link:
      • In the Great Palace, bypassing the barrier early with the Fairy spell is instant death, regardless of how much life Link has remaining.
      • Passing through locked doors to obtain treasure items is a waste of magic in the FDS version because items have to be struck with Link's sword in order to collect them, which he can't do in Fairy form.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening:
      • It is possible to pick up an item from a store's shelf, run around the shopkeeper very quickly until he can't see you (he tries to face you all the time but can't always keep up) and then run out the door with it. Players thinking they had managed to cheat the game were very surprised when a) everyone started referring to them as "THIEF" instead of their chosen name in dialogue and b) they re-entered the shop and the shopkeeper killed them with a laser. In the DX version, though, you are actually required to steal from the shop to get one of the photos in the game. Most people choose to save this one for the end of the game when they don't need to go into the shop again anyway.
      • The DX version has an exclusive dungeon designed for the Game Boy Color and it has its enemies and puzzles based on colors. Trying to get past the skeleton guards on a regular Game Boy will have them blocking the way and even if you do manage to get past them, trying to play through the colors gimmick without any actual color would be too frustrating to attempt.note 
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time:
      • In the Biggoron Sword quest, there are several items that must be delivered to their recipients within a time limit, and you have to travel the old-fashioned way. You're allowed (and expected) to use Epona along with any regular shortcuts you know (like the ones in the Lost Woods), but if you try teleporting to your destination with an ocarina song, the time limit will be reduced to a few seconds when you arrive and you'll be forced to start the step over.
      • If you use a teleport song during the Running Man contest, the timer will skip ahead to several seconds before the time you're supposed to beat.
      • For Dampé's game and the Fire Arrows, you have to manually wait for the time of day to change.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess:
      • The store kept by a bird has this: you can just fill your lantern/bottle, but if you walk out, it yells at you and once you come back, it attacks you. Fortunately, you can stop him by putting even just one Rupee in the box (but then he calls you a cheapskate when you leave), and get on his good side again by putting in a rupee without buying anything.
      • Attempting to roll jump the ball over a close gap in the rollgoal game will make Hena accuse you of cheating and have to restart the stage.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, you can play a minigame where you dig for treasures. However, you are told to stop digging and leave the minigame area after you have obtained ten treasures. If you choose to ignore this and attempt to dig up an 11th treasure, you'll be given a warning. Attempting to dig up another one will result in a 100-Rupee fine, and yet another one will have all of your Rupees taken away. If you continue to dig for more treasure after you're broke, you'll be banned from the minigame. How do you get unbanned? By apologizing and paying a 300-Rupee reinitiation fee.
    • The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds: Trying to 'cheat' the racing mini game by using Irene's Flying Broomstick as a Warp Whistle causes the guy at the finish line to disqualify you from the race for flying to the finish. However, the game does give you an in-game way to still 'cheat' the system, just warp to Lorule via the dimension crack placed right next to the start, teleport to Skull Woods in there (where the racing organisers can't see your actions) and exit back at Rosso's House via the second crack right next to the finish line.
    • Hyrule Warriors: Though you can use a single Compass item as many times as you like in Adventure Mode by opening the Home menu and quitting the game right after you use one but before the game is saved, it doesn't work with skill appraisals in the Smithy, since the game saves right after you pay the required number of Rupees.
    • Downplayed in Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, where you can usually take out a good deal of a Guardian's health by deflecting its beam attacks. That is, except in the second mission. Since the game is intent on teaching you about the different types of stage objectives it'll give you, trying to reflecting its beams back at it results in minimal damage until all of the Decayed Guardians are hijacked. This remains the case even if you're replaying the level as a high-level character. It is still possible to defeat it yourself in a war of attrition, but the game refuses to let you exploit its main weakness for an easy win.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom:
      • In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, one bug that made it into the game was "whistle-sprinting", whereby you rapidly tap the sprint button while whistling, which lets Link run at full speed without losing stamina. In this game, you are actively punished you for attempting to whistle-sprint by draining stamina faster should you attempt it.
      • During a few sidequests where you have to escort people, like one where you have to escort a performing duo to a Great Fairy to wake her up, using the Ultrahand on the object they're sitting on for too long to try and carry them past hazards will have them tell you to knock it off. Do it enough times and they'll abort the escort, forcing you to start over.
    • The fan-game Zelda Classic has a built-in cheat system where the quest designer can change them. Using those and saving in that quest will permanently denote that quest with a text that says "used cheats" when the player checks the time stats.
  • Psychonauts:
    • Whenever you enter a cheat code, you'll hear a voice shouting "Yooouuu cheated!". The clip is taken from one of the characters in the final level who accuses Raz of cheating, regardless of whether or not you did so, since all psychics are no-good cheaters.
    • Napoleon also does not permit cheating in Waterloo World. He tells Raz not to touch his pieces, his soldiers tell you that using telekinesis on them is cheating if you talk to them, and he won't accept victory if Raz tries jumping in the stronghold directly. Yet, he jams the gate mechanism when you're about to win.
  • In several installments of Tomb Raider, performing a cheat code incorrectly would result in Lara Croft exploding. The cheat codes also varied slightly from game to game, to discourage you from attempting the older games' cheat codes in the sequels.

    Action Game 
  • Arkanoid: If you use the Arkanoid DS Paddle Controller with Space Invaders Extreme, your high scores will be marked to show that you used it. Additionally, it can't be used for Ranking Mode. Space Invaders Extreme 2 lifts the Ranking Mode ban. Paddle users will have a "P" shown next to their scores, but there is no way to separate ranking by input method. However, in versus mode, there is an option that prevents the game from matching you up with paddle players.

    Adventure Game 
  • In Codename: ICEMAN there is a sequence where you need to play a dice game with a crew member in order to win an object needed later in the game. If you save and restore more than twice during this sequence, the crewman will accuse you of cheating and leave the room, leaving the whole game in an unwinnable state.
  • In the original Sierra version of Quest for Glory II, using the cheat code for the first game ("razzle dazzle root beer") drops all your stats to the single digits. In AGD Interactive's remake, using the original QFG2 cheat code ("suck blue frog") first gives you a warning, then lowers your stats AND disqualifies you from obtaining paladinhood.
  • In one mission in Space Quest VI: Roger Wilco in the Spinal Frontier, the player needs to go through a series of tasks to determine which file to search for information needed to beat the game, which happens to be the same each time. If you try to open the file without going through the motions, the game chastises you and takes away all your points... then relents and gives them back shortly afterward.

    Beat 'Em Up 

    Card Games 
  • In Burning Monkey Solitaire, games that use cheats get tagged so on the high score list. However, the real penalty is that the monkeys will see it, and mock you.
    "He cheats! He cheats! The naked monkey cheats!"
    "Don't worry, I won't tell anyone."
  • Using "Undo" in the Solitaire game that came with the iMac caused the spectators to mock you. "So that's how you win - by CHEATING!"

    Driving Game 
  • The original F-Zero has, in at least one course, a massive shortcut you can take by hitting a jump pad at full speed and turning hard right to land on the track opposite of you - but a flying saucer will take your machine and drop it off where it's supposed to be, thereby negating your progress. In F-Zero GX, taking such a shortcut without some clever exploitation of the course's hidden checkpoints will cause your machine to simply explode.

    Fighting Game 
  • A possibly unintentional one occurs the Playstation version of the original Dead or Alive, where using a Gameshark to unlock all costumes gives every character 15 costume slots. The issue is that female characters each have a max of 14 outfits and male fighters each have only 5, and picking a slot that has no corresponding costume will make the game crash while loading a match. Add to this that the CPU always chooses an outfit at random, and using the cheat effectively ruins your game data. If you want to unlock every costume and have a stable save file, you'll just have to do it the long way by playing Tournament mode on default settings 55 times to unlock each outfit individually (but you can use an invincibility code to help blow through the task more quickly).

    First-Person Shooter 
  • In Battlefield 1942, you can enter cheatcodes through the console. If you enter it wrong, even by one letter, the console says "Trying to cheat? Shame on you. Feel my wrath." Such a result ends in an instant failure for your team. Even if you type it correctly, you are still reduced to about five death tickets instantly. However, once the round ends and you begin another one in the same match, the cheatcode still lies in effect.
  • Deus Ex saves have "-CHEATS ENABLED-" in big white letters superimposed on screenshots of save files that have cheats activated. However deactivating the cheats by reversing the state of the console command that enabled them will also get rid of the message.
    • Trying to save a game with an abundance of skill points crashes the game because of a buffer overflow. This was never fixed and probably intentionally.
  • Doom:
    • The series disables most of the cheats when you're playing on Nightmare mode. The only ones that work are "iddt" and "idclev".
    • In the Doom mod Aeons of Death, if you give yourself weapons through the console without turning off the anti-cheat mechanism in the game options, the world turns pink and girly music starts playing.
    • The Doom mod Aliens TC replaces the "god mode" status bar face sprite with the admonishment "Cheat! Can't hack it eh? Loser". The messages that usually pop up to indicate a certain cheat has been entered have also been replaced with things like "Play fair, man!" and "Come on! Play properly!", and attempting to fire the BFG (which the mod doesn't actually have an equivalent to, as the Cargo Bay Loader uses both chainsaw and BFG sprites) brings up yet another prompt to play the game properly and prevents you from using any of your weapons.
    • Similarly, in Zombies TC for Doom, the "god mode" face has your character sticking out his tongue and wearing a dunce cap saying "sucker".
    • In My House, most of the cheat codes have been disabled, but they do have a new purpose of offering cryptic text hints when you try to type them in. God mode and noclip (which as a limitation of the engine cannot be disabled) still work, but the map is designed to prevent effective use of the latter; trying to use it to escape your current area will send you to The Backrooms, where the area's size and repetition ensures that the exit is very difficult to find. In addition, trying to use console commands to reach the hidden Sllahrednu level will also send you to a Backrooms area, which this time is completely inescapable.
  • Duke Nukem 3D disables cheats in "Damn I'm Good" mode, with the message "You're too good to be cheating!"
  • In GoldenEye (1997) and Perfect Dark, winning a level with a cheat active prevents the player from unlocking the next level, or that level's cheat. This includes using cheats that make the game harder, for some reason. Also, in the level-ending score card for Perfect Dark, the mission's status is "Cheated" and the agent's status is "Dishonored". (Contrast to "Mission Status: Complete, Agent: Active", "Mission Status: Failed, Agent: Deceased", "Mission Status: Aborted, Agent: Disavowed" and "Mission Status: Unknown, Agent: Missing", the possible statuses if you don't cheat.)
  • Left 4 Dead 2 punishes players who cheat in Survival mode. Several maps have exploits that let players be safe and zombies can never reach them. This causes the AI Director to pour Spitter acid on the group to coax them into getting back into the playing field. If the players somehow avoid this, the Director will then outright damage players continuously until they die. This doesn't always work since some exploit spots are considered "in the field" by the Director.
    • The game also doesn't let you enable cheats if you start a game from the main menu, only if you manually load the level using the in-game console. This is probably a compromise given that many useful commands for modders are considered cheats, and modders are likely to be loading in maps via console commands anyways.
  • Heretic punishes you for trying to use the Doom cheat codes. The God Mode cheat (iddqd) kills you immediately, while the cheat to give you every weapon (idkfa) takes away your weapons instead and leaves you with just the staff, telling you that a cheater doesn't deserve weapons.
  • In the demo version of Hexen, typing in Doom's invincibility code (quicken) gives you a warning the first two times and then kills you immediately the third time.
  • The original 1999 Medal of Honor had a code to instantly unlock all cheats and others to unlock all stages. The catch is that cheats can still only be used on previously-beaten levels, so you have to go through the full game without them to be able to use cheats beyond the first stage. Just use a GameShark for invincibility instead? Nice try, smartass, but the code also makes all enemies invulnerable too, so several levels become Unwinnable by Mistake.
  • Painkiller: Cheats are locked out on the two highest difficulty levels, Nightmare and Trauma.
  • The LucasArts game Star Wars: Dark Forces punishes the player for attempting to use Doom cheat codes.
  • Turok:
    • In Turok 2, if you used the level skip to reach the final boss, would not allow you to see the ending movie. However using the all artifacts cheat and manually opening the door to the final level would.
    • If you win Turok 3: Shadows of Oblivion using cheats, at the end of the credits it will say something along the lines of "Congratulations, you won! But you also cheated... Try again?".
  • ULTRAKILL: Enabling cheats will make the player not get a ranking after completing the level. Downplayed with enabling major assists which allow to get a ranking, but it's clearly marked with a blue background and it is not possible to get a P-rank, the highest possible.
  • Unreal Tournament 2004 prevents you from unlocking the three hidden characters of the single player campaigns if cheats have been used during the tournament. Naturally, this point is made moot once you use the cheat to unlock them anyway.
  • Valorant has an anti-cheat system called "Vanguard" built into it. If Vanguard detects that a player is cheating, it will automatically ban the cheater and terminate the match (the remaining players will not have a loss placed on their record if this occurs).

    Hack and Slash 
  • In the Devil May Cry series, the Super costumes (unlocked by completing the "Must Die" mode) grant the character infinite Devil Trigger gauge (as well as other added features like instant MAX-Acts for Nero or a pseudo-permanently full Concentration Gauge for Vergil). However, health regeneration is disabled, moves that consume the DT Gauge (like Time Lag, Showdown, or Summoned Swords) will still drain the meter down (and in the case of Royalgaurd Style in Devil May Cry 5, you have to put yourself into a cooldown state for the Royal Gauge to refill back to max, a Nerf to how it used to work with the Super costume in Devil May Cry 4), and starting from Devil May Cry 4 onwards, using Super costumes will cut your total mission score by a certain percentage.

  • Final Fantasy XIV has a few anti cheat measures put in place if players get clever and try to circumvent the rules:
    • In every trial and raid, a boss will have a "do the mechanic or my follow up attack will cause a Total Party Wipe". Some bosses have a backup where if the players somehow manage to bypass the instant kill attack for failing a mechanic, the boss will spam their attacks until the survivors die. In the event that players manage to exploit a boss due to their AI breaking, they run the risk of having their accounts suspended or even outright banned since abusing exploits is against the terms of service.
    • The 2nd boss of The Copied Factory raid has all three alliances on separate platforms with mechanics that each alliance has to deal with on their own. If an alliance revives a fallen player from a different alliance, that player will be placed with the alliance that revived them. In order to prevent players from purposely killing themselves so that they don't have to do their own mechanics, the boss will transport misplaced players back to their own platform.
  • If you get caught using a bot in RuneScape, you'll end up getting temporarily banned from the game as well as having your trading capabilities temporarily restricted as well. The third time you get caught, everyone will know—along with being permanently banned, you're sent to Botany Bay, where you will be scolded by a character named the Botfinder General who will then ask the players who are attending your trial on how to execute you for your bad behavior.

  • This dates back to pinball machines, which have had several different anti-cheating mechanisms built in over the years, the most famous of which is the "TILT" error message, which has been referenced and parodied as far back as Looney Tunes.
  • In the old old days, when pinball tables were made of wooden frames, it was easy to cheat by pounding the underside of the cabinet. Manufacturers quickly discouraged this by hammering nails through the bottom surface. Ouch.
  • The TILT mechanism recognizes that the table has been... well, tilted at an unusual angle to influence the path of the ball. The punishment is that all controls and targets are shut down until the ball is removed from play. The first TILT was invented by Harry Williams and used in Signal, with a mechanism involving a ball sitting on top of a post inside a cup (mounted within the player's view) — if the ball was shaken off the cup, the score was invalid. This evolved into a metal pendulum and ring, allowing it to be mounted inside the cabinet. Since the pendulum is a physical object, it has inertia and a few small nudges won't trip the sensor. Modern machines will give you a few warnings before penalizing you.
  • Video game pinball simulators will often have a "nudge" command, which might lead to a TILT if you overuse it as with a real machine. A few games (Crüe Ball and Pokémon Pinball among them) are "untiltable" and let you nudge indefinitely — and you'll need to in order to win. More advanced ones attempt to simulate the inertia of the physical tilt sensor, requiring several nudges in a row for the sensor to trip.
  • "Slam Tilt" is a now-obsolete variant which would detect dishonest players tampering with the coin mechanism (either tricking it into thinking a coin had been inserted when it hadn't, or trying to steal the coin box itself). Whereas a TILT would only cost you your current ball, a Slam Tilt results in a Non-Standard Game Over for all players and voids any credits in the machine, locking the machine down until the owner can unlock it using a special key or code. Basically, you have to start all over. Modern pinball machines have gotten much better at protecting their coin mechanisms, so Slam Tilt is not usually installed by default. The other time you see it is if the player is grossly violent with the machine, but in that case the venue's owner will usually throw you out by then for damaging their very expensive equipment.
  • Any Digital Pinball Table made by Zen Studios comes with an operator's menu that the player may use between sessions to modify, among other things, the table's difficulty and gameplay features. However, if the player chooses to do away with the default factory settings, they won't be able to post high scores online.
  • Typing in a cheat for 3-D Ultra Pinball: Thrill Ride will open a message saying that you won't be able to get into the high scores for that game.
  • Earthshaker! has a shaker motor built into the cabinet and will ignore the tilt sensor while it runs.
  • In Safe Cracker, you can't lose your ball normally, so tilting will start Sudden Death early. If you're already in Sudden Death, though, you lose your ball as normal.
  • Sonic Generations has a DLC minigame stage in the form of Casino Night that lets you play pinball with Sonic as the ball. While you are allowed to use the Control Stick to tilt the stage, doing it too often locks up your controls for a bit.

    Platform Game 
  • In the original version of Banjo-Kazooie, if you enter three or more secret codes that unlock levels (but not the ones you find in-game that increase your item capacities or transform you, the ones that get you the Stop 'N Swop items, ones that give you infinite power ups, or ones that remove certain objects), Grunty erases your save file, though Bottles warns you ahead of time. In the Xbox Live Arcade version, Grunty's Code Vengeance, as it's known, doesn’t work for some reason, but entering any code not from Cheato will disable saving, achievements and leaderboards.
    • The XBLA version of Banjo-Tooie did the same thing with any cheats not obtained normally, even though there was no such penalty in the original version.
    • What makes this even worse in Banjo-Kazooie is that early on in the game, you have the opportunity to refuse Bottles' tutorial. If you then pester him in Spiral Mountain enough, he threatens to delete your save file. He doesn't go through with it. Players who've seen this may well assume that Grunty's similar threat is fake too...
  • Captain Claw refuses to save your progress or let you use checkpoints while you have cheats on. You are still able to unlock new levels, though.
  • Donkey Kong Country
    • Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!:
      • If you use certain cheat codes to make the game easier, you receive the title "Cheating Chump". That said, using cheat codes to make the game harder, without using any to make the game easier, allows you to get higher percentages and better ratings, and cheat codes that don't impact the game's difficulty also don't impact your rating.
      • Using the Warp Barrel in River Side Race automatically pushes your time to 10 minutes. If you want to beat Brash Bear's time, you'll have to do it the legit way.
    • Using any Gameshark code in Donkey Kong 64 will cause DK to spasm uncontrollably throughout the game. Even in the opening. Also, your cartridge will be permanently damaged if you save, and your file will be permanently corrupted so that you die in one hit and cannot pick up items.
  • In the Good Egg Galaxy in Super Mario Galaxy, there's an asteroid planet that can only be reached in the third mission. If you have a flying hack or something and go to that planet beforehand, the warp pipe that usually leads to a Power Star leads to a bottomless hole that kills you. An unorthodox method, but effective, as it sets up the illusion that this can happen often if you use hacks.
  • Entering the Konami Code in Super Monkey Ball Jr. at the title screen will change the title to Super Nice Try.
  • Winning the first Vectorman game after using any cheat code would make the game call you out on it, and tell you to try again without them, denying you of seeing the ending and credits. This was doubly important when a $25,000 grand prize for beating the game was the factor. You can cheat all you want in the sequel without penalty.
    "Congratulations! Now play without cheating."

    Puzzle Game 
  • Falling Blocks puzzle games in general will remove all blocks present on your field whenever the game is paused. This is done to prevent the player from repeatedly pausing the game and examine their entire board with no penalty, preventing them from either maxing out their score or clearing the single player vs. CPU mode with no effort.
  • Cheating in Portal's challenge mode will cause the word "CHEATED!" to be displayed on the results screen in big red letters, making that run null and void.
  • In The Impossible Quiz, if you press the Tab key (which normally highlights a clickable object in a Flash file), you get an instant Game Over. In The Impossible Quiz 2, this is accompanied by a screen that reads, "CHEATER! Tabbing is for TWATS!" with a screen showing a tab key getting X-ed out. Worse yet, one question attempts to trick you into pressing Tab with a message saying, "Press Tab 50 times!", complete with a timer. But the timer is actually a dud; if you wait long enough, the message changes to "Actually, don't do it, you'll die!" and you simply advance to the next question.

    Real Time Strategy 
  • The Civilization games often have a cheat menu which the player can use at any time, but use of which instantly means that your high score gets recorded as "Cheat Mode".
    • Some (most likely unintentional) other drawbacks would sometimes occur as well. For example, one of the cheats had a side effect of also mass spawning roving barbarians near your city.
  • Homeworld catched both cheats and modified ship files, as the game would allow things like adding capital-ship weapons to smaller vessels by editing game files.
  • In Impossible Creatures, whenever a player uses a cheat, you hear a message saying, "Somebody's cheatin'!" and an icon appears on the left side of the screen for all players to see that says, "Player X has cheated".
  • Rome: Total War grants honorary titles to characters that perform feats of battle or governance in-game. Use cheat codes on a city and you might find it governed by Flavius "The Editor", an example of this trope.
  • Warcraft:
    • Warcraft II had a ranking system to measure the capabilities of the player. Cheating players only got Cheater rank. Thankfully, there was a ridiculously easy way around this. It could only tell if you entered a code if you did so in your current session. So if you saved your game after completing all your objectives but before getting the mission completed screen, you could exit, reload, then see the rank that was due you.
    • Warcraft III only displays "Cheat activated!" when a cheat is entered, but custom maps often change the message into highly insulting messages about the player's competence, maturity or genetic heritage, while others actively punish the player for using cheats by failing the map or making it unwinnable (since there's no way to actually stop the game engine from running them). Many even inform would-be players that the map is not optimized to work with cheats, so there's no point in complaining if the boss was killed during his intro cutscene and freezing the game.

    Rhythm Game 
  • Attempting to unlock Extra Savior songs in DanceDanceRevolution by using Cut and Freeze Arrow-off will be disqualified, preventing you from unlocking the song.
  • Use the "Unlock Everything" cheat in Guitar Hero and the save system disables itself.
    • Using almost any cheat, save for Hyper Speed, prevents you from recording high scores. Speaking of Hyper Speed...
    • Using the Quickplay songs cheat (which vastly expands your song choices in quickplay mode) does NOT unlock Dream Theater's "Pull Me Under". You HAVE to clear career mode (solo or coop) to be able to play "Pull Me Under" in quickplay mode. Additionally, the two cheats that actually affect how the game is played (All-slide and Auto-Kick) are the only ones that disable high scores, money accumulation, and (where applicable) achievements. Everything else is fair game for use.
  • Because pausing during gameplay or using a slow-motion function would invariably tip the game in the player's favor, if you pause in the middle of a level while playing PaRappa the Rapper or any of its derivatives, you have to start the level over.
  • Going to settings and trying to turn on Botplay in Vs Sonic.exe (a function automatically accessible in most Friday Night Funkin' mods) will result in a special message from Lord X telling you off.

  • Angband recorded cheat attempts in the Hall of Fame.
  • Got caught cheating in NetHack? Your character instantly dies, with the cause of death listed as 'trickery'. Time to make a new character.

    Role-Playing Game 
  • In Fire Emblem: Thracia 776 if you use a cheat to obtain the Gungnir, its description is "You shouldn't cheat!"
  • In both Knights of the Old Republic games, inputting a single cheat code means all saves involving that character will have 'Cheats Used' superimposed over them in bright yellow letters. Glitch exploitation, however, is another matter entirely... and both games feature some VERY exploitable (and awesomely fun) glitches.
  • In Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, attempting to cheat the (realtime) daily Happy Lucky Lottery by setting the GameCube's internal clock backward will result in the Bob-Omb who runs the lottery calling you a cheater and forcing you to buy another ticket. At 500 coins. However, setting the clock forward is fair game.
  • If you use codes in Persona 3 to get Dummied Out items, skills, persona, or the ability to have the main character use his allies' personas, Mitsuru (or Fuuka) would scold you for cheating. With full voice acting. We are not kidding.
  • Pokémon:
    • General:
      • Newer Pokémon games implement methods to keep players from either transferring severely hacked (as in modified stats and illegitimate Abilities) Pokémon between games or from using them in things like Colosseums and the Battle Frontier. They don't seem to have found a way to do this for illegitimate move sets yet, though.
      • Pokémon Bank's side app, Poké Transporter, will not send over any pokémon that fails its hack checks. Unfortunately, there were cases where legitimate event mons were seen as hacked.
      • Cheating is now also harder because patches can be released to update software and patch previously used exploits. In one case, players were induced to update their system and close the exploit that was allowing genning Pokémon via QR codes, because the update patch for the game itself was in the eShop. In order to go online and get it, a system update was required. Not updating blocks any online play.
      • Most Pokémon games use the actual time on the system clock to determine certain events, like NPCs who will help you once daily, items that respawn, weather in the Wild Area in Pokémon Sword and Shield, etc. If the games notice you changing the clock, they'll cancel all daily events for a while. (There's an exploit in Sword and Shield that partially prevents this though.)
      • Using a cheat device on the DS titles would lock them out from participating in official Nintendo-sanctioned tournaments.
    • Generation 1 and their remakes:
      • It's impossible to transfer a Mew that was created with a glitch from the Virtual Console Generation 1 games or the Coin Case glitch in Generation 2 games into Pokémon Bank, unless you go through a really elaborate process or soft resetting your Trainer ID to be 22796 with the name GF before you obtained the Mew.
      • In Pokemon FireRed And LeafGreen, if you hack Mew or Deoxys into the game to skip having to need the events for them, since they don't get a special flag otherwise, they will disobey your every command. Downplayed in the sense that the anti-cheat measure only worked if you directly hacked them into your game. Hacking to teleport to their location and catching them there wouldn't.
    • Generation 2 and their remakes:
      • In just Pokémon Gold and Silver, Clair will call you out if you obtain a Dragon Fang before challenging and defeating her, and will also hold on to her Rising Badge until you get the Dragon Fang in-game.
        Clair: You did not get that at Dragon's Den. Trying to cheat like that... I'm disappointed in you.
      • In Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, if you use a Walk Through Walls cheat code to walk through the Safari Zone Gate without going through reception first, the Safari Zone will be reduced to six plain squares and the only Pokémon you encounter are Level 20 Rattata. Strangely, the encounters are treated like regular ones instead of Safari Zone encounters.
    • Generation 3 and their remakes:
      • Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire: These games introduced the "Bad EGG" anti-cheat measurement. Apart from Emerald where it can spawn from doing the Pomeg glitch, it only shows up if you do things such as alter IVs, give illegal movesets or steal other trainers' Pokémon (all of which are impossible without a cheating device) then a "Bad EGG" will often spawn (usually in place of that stolen mon). This thing is just a useless egg that when it hatches will cause your game to crash. It also occasionally duplicates itself, overwriting other pokémon. Since it's an egg, you can't get rid of it, and cheating to get rid of it often just made things worse. Finally, anytime you restart with it spawned; especially after the aforementioned crash, you will often find your data corrupted and forced to restart.
    • Generation 4 and their remakes:
      • Pokémon Diamond and Pearl: This is the reason why Diamond and Pearl never got Oak's Letter or the Member Card released for the Shaymin and Darkrai events. Players were getting them all the time through tweaking and surf glitch, so Game Freak just gave out events by wi-fi instead. Also, getting Shaymin by the glitch methods doesn't trigger the fateful encounter flag, so you can't get the Gracidea flower to change its form.
      • Pokémon Battle Revolution: Used the statbreaker glitch to hack your mons' stats or imported obviously hacked pokémon? Then in Battle Revolution, all those pokémon are now just Bad Eggs, essentially making them useless for the game. They only go away once the offending Pokémon has left the DS game and its stock is reuploaded.
    • Generation 5:
      • From this generation onwards, the Wonder Card system ensures that hacked items or pokémon have to be triggered by a flag in the data before they'll work, making your 900 Liberty Passes with the '900 of all items' Action Replay code useless. Same thing with the event pokémon, since the game won't recognize them as the Pokémon they're supposed to be.
      • Despite all Pokémon being released now, using a code to fill in your Pokédex will still block you from the Global Link in Generation 5.
    • Generation 6:
      • Pokémon X and Y: Any attempt to import a Pokémon with an unreleased ability into the game will result in the ability defaulting back to the regular ability after bringing it into the game/hatching it.
      • Anything created with Powersaves, the sixth gen GameShark device, will only be tradable if it's within legal parameters. This includes stats, moves, shininess, or unreleased Pokémon or items. Oddly enough, illegal movesets are not checked for, only illegal moves, and legality does not appear to be considered for all of the aforementioned factors at the same time, so a Shiny Pikachu that knows Fly, Surf, and Volt Tackle at the same time (which was flat-out impossible for the moveset until Gen VII, and is still flat-out impossible for a Shiny Pikachu as of writing) is considered tradable.
    • Generation 7:
      • Pokémon Sun and Moon and Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon: Game Sync allowed Game Freak to detect things like unreleased items or the sole unreleased Pokémon, Marshadow, and players got banned from online events and battling for it. Also, Game Freak seems to be targeting giveaways on the GTS, banning players for trading too many Pokémon too fast. Sadly, a few innocents got caught up in the bans but couldn't get the problem fixed any sooner than the pre-determined ban length.
    • Others:
      • Pokémon Shuffle Mobile will not allow you to access ranked events if your device is rooted (Android) or jailbroken (iOS).
      • Attempt to use GPS spoofing in Pokémon GOnote  and this will result in an hour-long ban—but this isn't a typical ban in that it will not lock you out of the game. Instead, you're denied access to PokéStops and gyms, and wild Pokémon will always run away from you. This was later changed so that GPS spoofing will result in a proper, typical ban. (Rooted and jailbroken users are also denied access to the game, leading to the creation of patches to fix the problem.) Of course, players have figured out this can be bypassed by teleporting back home after engaging the Pokémon but before catching it. There were also cases of people using cars and public transportation to hatch eggs at a quick rate instead of actually walking to do it. Niantic countered the exploit by disabling the tracker that counts your steps, which means eggs and any achievements/activities related to distance walked would be halted until you started walking again. Likewise, the tracker won't count your steps if all you're doing is walking in circles around your house; you actually have to walk a good distance for the game to count your steps.
    • Fangames:
      • Pokémon Clover:
      • Cheat in the game, and after beating the champion, you will be arrested, just before you register your team in the Hall of Fame. This effectively soft-locks your game, trapping your character in a jail cell forever. There's a noose in the corner, labeled "the easy way out", but using it deletes your save file. Note that things like emulator save states are fair game; the game will do this only if you do stuff like hacking items in or getting Legendary Pokemon you have no possible way to obtain before becoming Champion illegitimately.
      • As of Version 1.2, DO NOT EVEN BOTHER trying to activate a "Walk Through Walls" cheat in an attempt to skip some of the obstacles or get into a place where you have no business being in before you even complete the Elite Four because if you pull that stunt, the game will immediately teleport you to that room. As in, straight away, no matter where you are when the code is activated. But, should you be stupid enough to do that, you can delete the code from your cheat list; merely disabling the WTW cheat is not enough because the game still thinks you have it on, thus triggering the failsafe. Though, if you didn't think to save your game and/or make a save state before you activated the code, well... it really sucks to be you, in that case.
  • In Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines, if you cheated your stats higher than possible, before meeting Jack for the first time, he will comment on this and tells you to redo the character creation process fairly; however, you can tell him that it's part of a mod.
    • One item, The Sheriff Sword can only be obtained by cheating. The item description is "You shouldn't have this."

    Simulation Game 
  • In Afterlife, excessive cheating makes a Death Star appear and start destroying your buildings.
  • Animal Crossing:
    • If you turn off the game without saving, Mr. Resetti shows up to lecture you once you turn it back on. Keep doing it, and his rants get progressively longer and angrier.
      • In Wild World and City Folk, this presents a disadvantage to those who pull off an emergency power off because they caught one of their visitors trying to grief them by means of a bricking seed. (New Leaf allows you to safely deal with griefers by simply flipping the wireless switch on the 3DS; you'll get an error message and lose whatever happened during the online session, but the game will resume normally and Resetti won't lecture you.)
      • He doesn't appear if you reset while in someone else's town, but you still get punished in the Nintendo GameCube version; your face turns into a Gyroid and all the items in your inventory disappear.
      • The GameCube version allegedly has a custom crash handler (not the standard "On Error Freeze And Screech Incessantly" crash handler) to prevent players from getting a Resetti lecture if the game crashes. Unfortunately, that doesn't happen if your house suffers from a power outage or if you accidentally knock out the power cable. It hurts enough that you lost all of your progress. It hurt even more that you have to sit though that lecture afterwards.
      • In New Leaf, Resetti shows up if you reset your game... but only once, and his rant trails off into lamenting how he was put out of a job since they closed the Reset Surveillance Center. You get the option to build a new Reset Surveillance Center in town afterwards, but it's optional, and if you don't build it you can reset with no more than a mild scolding from your assistant Isabelle. Even if you do, Resetti opens his lecture by asking why you reset, and if you tell him you lost power or "had no choice", he'll skip the lecture and just ask you to be more careful in the future.
    • Also, if you use a Gameshark in the GameCube version, supposedly you will get a message from the wishing well saying there is "great sadness" in your town, and you'll never be able to get the golden axe. Of course, since you have a Gameshark, you can just cheat for it, but...
    • The wishing well further punishes you by refusing to let you dump deliveries you don't care to finish. This means that if the recipient of the delivery should move away before you have a chance to give them their package, then you'll have no way of getting the package out of your inventory unless you reset in someone else's town. Of course, again, you can just cheat it out of your inventory. The well is trying, at least.
    • You can also get punished for time traveling, that is, changing the time or date by large amounts. All your turnips will rot, and stalk market prices will plummet. Additionally, the game does not make a distinction between going forward and backward in time. If you change the system clock to three months before your last save, when you start up the game, the town will be in the same condition as if you hadn't played the game at all for three months. Since the Animal Crossing games rely on being played every day, or as close to daily as you can manage, a three-month "gap" in time isn't very pretty. Your town will be full of weeds, most if not all of your flowers will have wilted and died, half of your villagers will have moved out, and the remaining ones will wonder where you've been for the past 90 days.
  • Cheating in Descent would permanently reset the player's score to zero for the game and cause the score indicator to flash "CHEATER!" each time the player does something that should increase their score, such as destroying a robot or rescuing a hostage, while not actually increasing their score. Using the cheat codes from the previous game(s) in the sequels, Descent II and Descent 3, would set the player's shields to 1 (out of 200). Descent 3 also has a "cheat" code that does 210 shield damage to the player (also out of 200, although the Magnum-AHT's extra 13% shield power means it will still have 17 shields if the code was entered when it has 200 shields).
  • Mech Warrior 2: 31st Century Combat had a built in cheat mode (separate from the real cheat codes) called "Altered Reality" that you could turn on at will from the Clan hall mission briefing. These states of altered reality included invincibility and infinite ammo. While these cheats were on, you gained zero honor points and were not allowed to advance to the next mission, as punishment for cheating. Switching off Over Heating tracking via the same menu, however, merely caused you not to get any points.
    • Additionally, Mech Warrior 2 used some of the original Doom's cheat codes for various effects. If you entered 'idkfa', which in Doom gave you all weapons and keys with full ammo, the screen turned white, the console returned "This ain't DOOM, Bub.", and your 'mech immediately exploded.
    • In Mech Warrior 3 and its Pirates Moon expansion, turning on any cheat would display a red "DISHONORABLE" above your mech's damage display, you wouldn't be able to progress in the campaign after completing the mission akin to Mech Warrior 2. Which presents some Fridge Logic, since in 3, You aren't playing as a Clanner that fights for "Honor".
  • In SimCity, if you used the FUND code to get free money too often, a disaster would strike your city almost immediately after (though not immediately enough not to save, and the disaster would not happen after you reloaded). SimCity 2000 also supported the FUND code, but instead of free money it gave you a loan... at 25% interest.
    • Due to a programming error though, the FUND code works even better in SimCity 2000 than in the original. If you enter it often enough, the interest rate overflows and gives you negative interest — i.e. it gives you a lot of money every month, instead of taking it.
    • Similarly, in the Windows 3.1 (floppy disk) version of SimCity 2000, "buddamus" was the code to get $500,000 and all of the buildings (including rewards). In the Windows 95 (CD) version, it caused a spontaneous nuclear meltdown.
    • Typing "CASS" gave you $250, but using it too often caused a firestorm. Typing swear words such as "Darn" or "Heck" would cause all of your residential zones to turn into churches, which don't generate tax revenue.
    • SimCity 3000 had the cheat code "call cousin vinnie" where a screen message from a shady character would offer to donate a hefty chuck of change to you. If you refused the donation, you'd get a free reward of a really cool castle building.
  • Theme Hospital: The public address system voice would start talking about it when you entered a cheat code. "Hospital administrator is cheating".

    Stealth-Based Game 
  • Metal Gear:
    • In one of Hideo Kojima's many many fourth wall breakages, during the torture rack sequence in Metal Gear Solid, Revolver Ocelot warns his prey not to "even think about using auto-fire, or I'll know." And in the GameCube remake he actually turns and points accusingly at the player as he says it. That would be awesome enough on its own, but he's not bluffing: Depending on the type of controller, it might go unnoticed, but if the game does detect it, it's an automatic Game Over since it won't let you input X to raise your Stamina, and Snake dies of electrocution. There is no additional meta dialog past that point.
    • In the PC version of MGS, activating the "Invincibility" cheat during the minigame only made it LOOK like your health wasn't decreasing, even though it not only continued to decrease, but did NOT accept button presses to recover the health. Oddly enough, auto-fire appears to work in the PC version.
    • If one uses a cheat device to obtain the PSG1 sniper rifle before you encounter Sniper Wolf, said character will shoot Meryl instead of you when you first encounter her and it means Meryl will die since you can't kill Sniper Wolf fast enough to prevent Meryl dying.
    • If you input 'UUDDLRLRBA' as your name on the terminal in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, the game mocks you. The only other time you can use the Konami Code is on your Ranking screen - where it performs no function other than to make Snake get annoyed at you for trying to cheat after the game is already over. Also, during the Mind Screw sequence in Arsenal Gear, one of the No Fourth Wall insane rants is the Colonel accusing you of using a cheating device, regardless of whether you're actually doing that or not.
    • In Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops, you can unlock special characters (such as most of the cast of Metal Gear Solid 3) via in-game Guide Dang It! achievements, or via inputting a password. If you unlock the characters via the password, they learn slower and the cap for how high their stats can improve is made lower.

    Third-Person Shooter 
  • In Crusader: No Regret entering the cheat code (jassica16) from the first game, instead of the new cheat code (loosecannon16) caused a message to appear saying, "Of course we changed the cheats. Duh", while the final boss's voice taunts you, "I've been waiting a long time for this!". You are then teleported to a large room with no cover and exactly eight copies of the final boss, Chairman Draygan in his mech suit, though there is a grenade launcher and some ammo to help you fight back. While it is possible to win the fight if you're fast enough, by running in circles and getting the bosses to shoot through each other, the game still gets the last laugh. The moment the last boss dies, the Silencer turns to face the screen, and then, if the Random Number God is not on your side, blows up in flaming chunks (otherwise the game just exits).

    Turn Based Strategy 
  • Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri plasters your score with a huge "CHEATED!" in bold red if you use the in-game scenario editor to tweak the game to your advantage.
    • Plus the ending for that scenario will always reveal that the whole thing was just your faction acting out a wargame and that they haven't actually achieved anything, irrespective of your method of victory.

    Wide-Open Sandbox 
  • Grand Theft Auto routinely prevents you from get 100% Completion should you cheat, at least in the later games (Grand Theft Auto III onwards). (Although nobody's sure if that was a coding error or deliberately put there.)
    • The game gives you a "criminal ranking" - a numeric score and associated title. Cheating gives you a negative score, and a title like "Total Liar".
    • If you activate the cheat that causes every NPC in the game to become an active combatant in San Andreas, the mission to prevent Madd Dogg's suicide becomes impossible and the game Unwinnable. Plus, there's no way to disable the cheat once it's activated, so if you activate it and then save, it's impossible to reach the end of the story, and you have to load a new save file. Quite harsh considering it happens in the final third of the game.
    • In Grand Theft Auto IV, cheats are entered via the cellphone. After you enter it, but before it's executed, it will provide a confirmation screen where it explicitly states that using the cheat would prevent the player from earning certain achievements (which it may also state). Your stats then include a "number of times cheated" measure.
    • Interestingly, none of the pre-GTA IV games has a problem with you using the easier "abusing saves to keep your weapons" cheat.
    • Also in San Andreas: In the middle of a certain mission where you're in a car chase being shot at, if you use a cheat which repairs your vehicle and makes it invulnerable to damage, the car blows up instead and you fail the mission.
    • The San Andreas Game Mod Things to Do in San Andreas adds "busta!" to the usual cheat activation message.
  • The Saints Row series prevents you from earning achievements and disables auto-saving should you enable cheats. It's not that much of a disincentive, since regular saving is still permitted and few of the cheats are really all that game-breaking to start with (God Mode is not a selectable cheat in part three, for instance, but you can buy legitimate upgrades to make you practically invincible anyway). Most cheats are there just to increase the wackiness and mayhem you can dish out, so it makes sense not to punish the player too harshly for wanting to mess around with them.
    • Using certain cheats for driving missions in Saints Row: The Third seems to wildly screw with your partners' AI when they're controlling a vehicle and cause other glitches even if you're behind the wheel.
    • When cheats were reintroduced in an update for the 2022 reboot, in addition to disabling achievement progress and auto-saving, enabling "dirty" cheats would disable the ability to save the game manually, however this didn't apply to the "clean" cheats. The anti-saving restriction with "dirty" cheats was removed in another update that coincided with the game's release on Steam.

  • The PlayStation 3 introduced Trophies. In games that allow cheat codes, using them will disable the ability to gain trophies on that particular playthrough, and will also mark said save game as Cheat. Same for the Xbox 360, except with achievements.
  • Online multiplayer games, in general, have strict rules against cheats, exploits, and Real Money Trade (the practice of exchanging real-world money for in-game goods, and vice versa, though this form of cheating has since become far more accepted...provided you buy the in-game goods or money from the company running it) that would upset the game's balance. Players caught cheating face punishment, up to an including banning and account termination.
  • Count the number of Super NES-and-later games by Konami that punish the player for even thinking about "up up down down left right left right B A". The first example was probably Gradius III; to make the code work there, you have to swap "left right" for "L-button R-button", and if you entered the older version, your ship would self-destruct. Or, less well known, note that the ABXY buttons form a pseudo-D-pad, and turn the controller upside down.
  • In the True Lies game for the SNES, if you use the infinite lives cheat code, every time you die, a picture of Aziz appears saying "You're lucky you're a cheat, Tasker!"
  • Most "rooted" as in "removed restrictions on system area" Android devices, (ie. the device is actually controlled by its owner and not the device's manufacturer or some other corporation) cannot play several games, in which the games did as a measure to deter cheating by changing, for instance, points and currencies.
  • If you're playing Battletanx, you can never complete Campaign mode if you activate the infinite health cheat. You'll get stuck on the bonus levels where your objective is to destroy as many enemy tanks before you get destroyed ... You can't turn cheats off and you've now ensured that you will never be destroyed (unless you press all the C-buttons, which automatically destroys your tank, even when invincible).
  • In beatmania IIDX, the H-Rannote , Regul-Speednote , and Expand Judgenote  will disqualify your scores. In versions up to beatmania IIDX 14 GOLD, using Assist modifiers will disqualify as well, but current versions simply downgrade the penalty to Easy-Mode Mockery, marking your clear with an "Assist Clear" unless you've obtained an "Easy Clear" or higher.
  • In Mega Jump, if the player tilts the device to one side for a prolonged amount of time, the game will spawn a lot of anvils and stop spawning anything else above, forcing a Game Over. There is even an achivement tied to it.
  • Cheating in Spore gives you the Joker Badge. And also stops you from gaining achievements with that savegame. However, there's an achievement for getting the Joker Badge 50 times.
  • Rez 's Beyond mode has the "Immortal" and "Overdrive Infinity" cheats; the former grants you permanent invincibility, and the latter grants you unlimited Overdrives. If you highlight either of these in the Beyond options menu, you will get a box saying that scores will not be saved if these cheats are turned on.
  • Tachyon: The Fringe. If you input any cheat codes into this game, Bruce Campbell (who also voices the character you play) will admonish you for cheating with phrases like "Oh, so now you're gonna cheat huh? Ya know what, you're pathetic, you know that. Just play the game!"
  • Spaceward Ho! will rat you out to your opponents if you've hacked the game to cheat at multiplayer.
  • Most of CAVE's console ports automatically save state at the start of each level and allow you to restart the level from that save state, but doing so disables just about everything for the rest of your run, including saving replays, records, and achievements (in games that have them).
    • In Mushihime Sama, restarting a level also yields a slightly different Game Over screen that has the subtitle "Let's challenge without the restart."
    • The iOS ports of Mushihime-sama Futari and DoDonPachi Dai-Ou-Jou combine this with Bribing Your Way to Victory. You can pay extra money to unlock options that make the game easier, but you can't save or upload any scores you get while playing with any of those options active.
    • To unlock Hibachi as a playable character in the smartphone-exclusive arrange modes of DoDonPachi Resurrection, you can defeat him, which requires completing both loops of the game on a single credit while fulfilling some difficult requirements, or you can input a cheat code. Unlocking him the hard way keeps him unlocked permanently, while using the cheat code causes Hibachi to be locked back up when you exit the game.
  • In Wolfenstein 3-D, cheating resets your score to zero.
    • The "ILM" (holding down I, L, and M at the same time) cheat, which gave you full health, ammo, weapons, and keys, resets your score to zero and adds 10 minutes to your time (to prevent getting a par time bonus), the more difficult to activate debug mode cheats had no penalty at all. However, many Wolfenstein 3D addons change the engine code so that using debug mode resets your score to zero permanently. Downplayed in that high scores are pretty much meaningless in any versions that don't have online leaderboards.
  • When playing against the Jester chess program, you are warned upfront that the computer opponent will cheat if you abuse the Undo Move option. The computer won't retaliate every time you use Undo Move (aside from a "Tsss!" displayed in the computer dialog box), but it's highly likely to do so when you try undoing a move that granted it a decisive advantage.
  • A different chess program - the Kasparov Talking Chess Set, an electronic chessboard that mocked you incessantly as it beat the living shit out of you - included a Take Back Move option. If you use it, the game spits mockery at you in a sulky voice, usually "Cheater" or "Scared of a program?" at you in a sulky manner. If you then happen to win the game after taking back a move, it says "You win, but you took back moves. Maybe you'd like to try it again without cheating this time?"
  • SubTerra has numerous cheat codes, but using one to complete a level simply doesn't register on your progress or high score table. Except for the cheat that lets you play levels out of order.
  • The debug menu in Ultima VII can mostly be used without repercussions, but if you teleport to a certain set of coordinates, Lord British will appear, call you a "thieving scoundrel bastard" and sentence you to death by lightning bolt. Should you somehow survive, there's no point in continuing the game - all life has been wiped from the planet as though you cast the Armageddon spell, and all text in both the debug menu and every clickable object has been replaced with "Oink".
  • Ultima VII Part II has a few "cheat zones" which are really just extremely-well-hidden areas with lots of goodies, several of which contain chastising signs.
  • Need for Speed: Undercover lets you unlock cars early by paying real money for them, cheating in all but name. But for plot reasons, many story missions force you to use a specific, non-tuned car on par with what you "should" have at that point in the game.
  • In .Hack//Quarantine, using a Gameshark to cheat in virus cores (avoiding the long dungeon slogs required to earn them legitimately), results in the game becoming Unwinnable, via a bug in one of the later boss fights.
  • Entering the infinite time cheat in the old ZX Spectrum game Spindizzy (not part of the Dizzy series) would remove one of the jewels, rendering the game Unwinnable and basically relegating it to one giant explore-em-up.
  • Gruntz had an odd variation on this where cheat codes worked perfectly, but if you used any of them (except a select few), you could no longer save your game.
  • Ace Attorney:
    • One of the easiest ways to get through particularly difficult courtroom sections is to take advantage of Save Scumming to keep your "health bar" at comfortable levels. One section in the third game's second case, however, is deliberately set up to trip you up if you do that. You are only allowed to press one statement in the current testimony: a wrong press results in a game over. The problem? Every result starts with the exact same lines from Godot, which is about all you think you need to see to know that you have to reset the game again.
    • The final case on the second game uses a similar trick when presenting a decisive witness and piece of evidence: every input nets the first identical lines from the Judge and Edgeworth, only to change if you got it right and keep reading.
    • The very last evidence-presentation of the third game will, similarly, begin with the same lines, even going straight up to an close-up on your adversary before he waits for your rebuttal.
    • In Investigations 2, a lot of the "presenting evidence" parts come out of nowhere when you least expect it leaving you no time to save and Edgeworth himself actually mentions how he despises people who cheat at things.
    • In general, if one attempts to use an infinite life cheat to get past an infinite penalty, the game will bypass the cheat entirely and continue to proceed with a game over, so don't get cheeky with it.
  • The amateur RMXP RPG Phylomortis: Avante Guarde would scramble the data on all your save files and boot you out of the game if you tried to cheat by editing any of the game's data files through the editor. Needless to say, the creator looked down on cheating.
  • World of Warcraft had The Cleaner, a level 73 demon whose only purpose is to show up and slaughter people who get help during certain quests that are supposed to be done alone.
    • There's also a third-party add-on known as High Roller, which supposedly lets you influence the Random Number God in your favor whenever you type /roll. Not surprisingly, it Rickrolls you instead.
    • Another early 3rd party add-on for the same game promised to permit you to be able to hack your own character, inflating its stats to incredibly high levels, permitting you to one-shot bosses and take on cities' worth of enemy players by yourself. Also not surprisingly, this turned out to be nothing more than a dressed-up 'keylogger', a program designed to record and steal password information, thus rendering the potential cheater's account forfeit in the most satisfying Karmic Bitchslap manner.
    • From back in Wrath of the Lich King, a mistake in restoring a hacked player's gear accidentally left him with a 'GM item', called Martin Fury. GMs are Game Moderators, Blizzard employees whose purpose is to... well, moderate the game. GM items are typically used for testing and some of them, as can be expected, boast ludicrous powers. Martin Fury in particular was a tabard - a vanity item that drapes over your armor - that had the On Use effect of killing any hostile mob within a certain range, instantly. The player in question handed this item over to his own Guild Master, 'Karatechop' who chose to use it. In a raid. Against a currently unbeaten boss, the Hard Mode of 'Flame Leviathan'. Thus giving his guild a Server First (possibly also world first) and immediately attracting GM attention. To make a long story short, Blizzard came down on the now notorious Karatechop like the hammer of Thor. The account of every single person in that raid was permabanned. Every single player in that guild who was even online at the time - even if they were not in the raid - had his account locked for a day. Some of those accounts may have later been restored but Karatechop himself was permabanned. Story here.
      • Blizzard has since changed the item, effectively ending possible future re-enactments of genesis. The new effect? Use: The caster commits suicide, instantly killing themself. When given forbidden fruit few can resist.
    • WoW also has the "No Man's Land" debuff, which shows up if you glitch or otherwise exploit your way into a not-yet-implemented zone, such as Hyjal. With the release of Cataclysm, the full opening of Azeroth, this debuff was retired, but it is still legendary; it would teleport players out of the zone! There are also rumors (albeit, unverified) that getting the debuff automatically reported you to a GM.
      • While it may not be "automatically reported", GMs do seem to notice players who manage to do this surprisingly quickly. If you're lucky, the GM may show up to have a chat with you and warn you you're not supposed to be there. If you're unlucky, you might get tempbanned.
    • The quest "An Inside Job" tasks players with sneaking into an Iron Horde base. Should the player attempt to bypass the dungeon with any of the flight toys or a flying mount, Khadgar teleports them back to the start.
      Khadgar: Are you crazy, launching yourself into the air like that! Why not just send Gul'dan a telegram? Better yet, march into the compound at the head of a Brewfest oompah band. This is a stealth mission! Stealth!
  • The classic text only adventure game Zork would mock the player if they typed either of the two magic words from the earlier Colossal Cave Adventure. Xyzzy, one of the two words in question, has a long history of producing strange responses in games later than Colossal Cave Adventure—rarely (if ever) beneficial. Due to the frequency of the response, "Nothing happens," in such contexts, typing xyzzy in Diablo II produced no result whatsoever. Not even an error message.
  • The RTS Rise of Nations doesn't penalize you for cheating at a skirmish. If you ever cheat in the Conquer the World Risk-type mode, though, your faction will become known as "The Cheaters".
  • Descent: FreeSpace disallowed the player from advancing to the next mission if cheats were activated during the mission. However, either due to a bug or an undocumented function the infinite ammo cheat remains activated on subsequent missions. This allows the player to activate the cheats and choose to replay the mission with infinite missiles and primary weapons energy without having to activate cheats.note 
    • FreeSpace 2 had the same bug/feature with the infinite ammo cheat, but it also allowed the player to advance to the next mission even after activating any cheats at all.
    • You'll get a message asking you to stop cheating upon reaching high-ranks on the first FreeSpace game. In the end, you'll get a message about you deserving the fact of becoming admiral and having to read boring books.
  • Entering a cheat code in Superman Returns for the Xbox 360 will earn you the "Not So Super" achievement, worth zero points, and will prevent you from getting any more achievements, either.
  • In Tetris Attack you can set an AI controller for either player in the options menu. The idea is to let a player enjoy vs. matches when they don't have another player around, but you can also use them in the single-player mode and beat the game easy with a high-level AI. However, instead of the ending, you'll get a "Hey! Quit trying to cheat!" message.
  • Super Punch-Out prevents you from accessing the fourth and final circuit with a career/save file if you used a Game Genie or Pro Action Replay. Of course, you also had to not be defeated in the first three circuits as well, which is likely why you were cheating in the first place...
  • In newer console versions of pop'n music, there are cheats that unlock hidden songs. Entering these cheats will disable score saving, and they wear off once you turn off the system.
  • In The Suffering, you occasionally get random horror images flashing up on the screen complete with a mix of sounds; if you use any cheats, these flashes become a LOT more common.
  • In the Wing Commander compilation "Kilrathi Saga" (1-3), the launcher program gives you the option of making yourself invincible, in the first two games, akin to the old "origin -k" command line switch, but changes your callsign to "CHEATER".
    • In Privateer and its addon Righteous Fire, with invulnerability activated at any time during a mission, whether random or plot, you can't get credit for completing it.
  • In Yume Nikki's useless minigame NASU, you can activate a cheat using a variation of the Konami Code (← ← → → ↑ ↓ ↑ ↓) which replaces the playing character's head with an eggplant and makes 300 points eggplants appear more often. However, it also prevents you from saving your score.
  • In Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 (and possibly other games in that series), using any cheat will result in your picture (next to your score) being stamped with the word "POSEUR". It doesn't appear to do anything else, though.
  • Ancient Domains of Mystery added a checksum in 0.9.9 Gamma 10; modifying the saved game causes enemies to become ridiculously powerful and causes you to lose your equipment periodically.
  • Editing saved games in Rise of the Triad opens a prompt saying that this saved game is shall we say "corrupted", and prompts to continue. All it does is reset the score.
  • Police Quest: Use the cheat guide to find the name of a random scumbag you'll need to track down in the second part of the game. Enter that name into the police computer in the game's first chapter. The computer will spit out, "Hey! You're not supposed to know that yet!'
  • The NES version of Solomon's Key has warps to help you get to the end of the game — a good thing because there are no saves and no continues and the difficulty is punishing. Of course, using even a single warp means you'll skip one of the levels with mandatory hidden objects, forcing you into the Bad Ending.
  • Zone of the Enders has a cheat code that will give you maximum health and maximum ammo for every weapon in the game. It also sets you back a level every time you use it. You don't level very quickly in Zone of the Enders.
  • Iji does not appreciate the player entering the Konami Code.
    • The Null Driver gives you 99 stat points, which lets you level up all stats to their maximum and still have points left over, fills your ammo to all owned weapons to their max, can turn enemies into random scenery objects, and the ones that don't get transformed explode. It also switches sprites and background tiles with other random images from the game with every use, which makes it difficult to tell what's a platform and what's not. Still able to navigate your way through the level? Some important doors or key terminals to those doors may be sprite-swapped with something else that prevents them from being used, trapping you in the level. Lucky enough to avoid that (or smart enough to only use the thing once)? Your time for that level gets set to 59:99, so it's impossible to do a speed run using this weapon. The graphic-swapping effects also last until the game is closed, even if you load a different save file.
  • Valve Anti-Cheat. When logging into a VAC-secured server, Steam verifies that critical game files have not been modified in some way (i.e., to allow players to do things they're not supposed to). If such modifications are detected, their entire Steam account will be banned from ever logging into VAC-secured servers again. If they want to be able to play the game again, they'll have to create a new account, and have the choice between repeatedly switching accounts to play different games or buying all of their games over again. (VAC is also enabled on many non-Valve games, such as the Call of Duty gamesnote  and Dungeon Defenders, full list here.)
    • Valve also swung the hammer on Team Fortress 2 players who have used dishonest means to unlock hats and secondary weapons - first by disabling these items for anyone who cheated, and then awarding players who didn't cheat (about 95% of all players) with a golden halo accessory. The result was a heavily split playerbase, with some servers only accepting players who were wearing halos and vice versa. Probably in response to this, the September 30, 2010 patch gave mostly everyone else a halo.
      • As of late April 2016, the VAC system has banned every single LMAOBOX user on Steam, including over 100 competitive players in UGC. LMAOBOX is the most notorious hack in TF2 because it was completely undetectable and allowed players to gain an immense unfair advantage over others without ever suffering consequences other than possibly a kick from the server. This changed when a user stumbled upon the source code of the hack and reported it to Valve.
    • A similar but less severe case happened with people who used a program to pretend that they were launching TF2 through Linux to get the Tux cosmetic item: it works but it changes your Steam profile name to "I cheated for a tux". You can change it back, but it will still be on your list of previous names.note 
      • However, it's also had a much more long-term and, more importantly, hard-hitting consequence: Tux is forever untradable. The earlier OSX equivalent to Tux, the Earbuds, were one of the most valuable items in the trading circuit. Since it can only be assumed that the main reason for said cheating is that a similar jump in value for Tux would surely follow, this assures that the cheaters walk away with little more than a worthless penguin.
    • The mildest form of this trope is that having cheats enabled but not yet used in the console, or even in developer commentary mode, prevents you from getting achievements.note 
  • The official Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace game would only allow you to use each cheat a finite number of times. Once you hit the limit there was no way to use that particular cheat again without starting a new game file. If you use any cheats in the game, your rank at the end is "Cheater".
  • Every Tetris: The Grand Master game will reject your record if you activate any codes prior to starting the game. Even codes that make the game harder, such as TGM1's Upside-Down and Mono modes.
  • If you finish a level in Blood under the influence of cheats, a big "YOU CHEATED!" message will appear on the final stats screen.
  • Lotus Turbo Challenge 2 has a password that locks the timer at 10 seconds during the race. It doesn't punish you directly: it lets the score cap punish the player instead by wrapping the score to zero.
  • In some gamebooks you are at some point asked if you have a particular item that can't be obtained in the game (or something similar); should you go with that option, you'll be told off (or punished with a Non-Standard Game Over) for cheating.
    • One specific example were the Zork gamebooks published in 1983-1984, based on the computer game. All four of the books had traps for cheaters involving a non-existent item, such as the Magic Sneakers from the Prince of Kaldorn in the first book Zork: The Forces of Krill. If you picked the choice to use them, you get punished by having Vindictus, the Patron of Decision Novels, cast a spell on you as punishment.
  • As implied by the above quote, pretty much every Konami game from the PS1 onward, except for the occasional shooter, has rapid fire disabled. Not that big a deal for a one-time task like in Metal Gear Solid, but this made every incarnation of International Track And Field ever almost completely unplayable.
  • Might and Magic:
    • VI-VIII had Obelisk Puzzles. Even if you knew the solution, the event producing the reward in question would not happen unless you really visited and read inscription on all obelisks. In some games the event was tied to a specific time happening only few times a year, meaning if you tried and failed you had to wait until next moment. Subverted because while this forces you to collect all pieces of the riddle, you still don't have to solve it yourself.
    • In Might and Magic 6 there is a gate which requires you find 6 passwords scattered over huge dungeon. They would work only if a person entering them had their corresponding scroll in their inventory, so simply looking them up in walkthrough wouldn't work.
    • In Might and Magic 7, it is particularly easy to abuse save states. They did, however, set it so you couldn't do that in The Arena. If you save in The Arena and reload, you get taken back to Harmondale. The best you can do is save right before entering The Arena and hope to get lucky with the random monster selection.
  • In Batman: The Movie for Amiga, activating cheat mode will flip the title screen upside down. If you beat the game the ending screen will also be upside down, making it hard to read.
  • Touhou:
    • Perfect Cherry Blossom simply closes itself if you try to use a hacking program to modify your lives, bombs, or power.
    • Most games feature a "Slow" column in replay and high score lists, showing the average amount of slowdown throughout the game. Ideally, the Slow percentage will stay at 0%, but sometimes, often due to the player's PC being overtaxed, the game may dip in speed, bumping the percentage up, so if the player tries to deliberately slow down their game, anyone checking their high score tables and replays will know. Many high score threads for Touhou games will reject runs where the Slow percentage exceeds a certain amount, often 10%.
  • In the Beggar's Canyon race of Rogue Squadron you'll be chastised and disqualified if you fly out of the canyon to take a shortcut. That said, and it's unknown if this is a bug or a feature, it is possible to cheat in this way if you're very quick about it and fly over the third dune as low as possible.
  • In Star Wars Rogue Squadron III, when playing the Multiplayer Co-Op Mode, if you used the "Turn the second A-Wing into an awesome car" code you can't proceed because both players need to be in an A-Wing. Of course, there is also an "Unlock every mission" code, so yeah...
  • Monster Hunter 3 (Tri) players who were caught cheating while playing online faced a ban from the game. Bans weren't permanent, though: they were set to expire... in the year 9999.note  The game's online servers were shut down in 2013, so those bans were never lifted anyway.
  • In Disgaea DS, if you use an Action Replay to amp up the earned experience, it will eventually result in your characters requiring billions of experience points to advance even a single level. Of course, you can usually get to about level 2300 before this kicks in. Using hacked weapons to put some of your stats up to the billion range doesn't cause the game to call you out on it, however, but editing the characters causes cheksum errors in every game in the series.
  • In the Flash game Combat Instinct 3, if you attempt to manipulate the game's playback, you'll get a "Nice Try!" message and your health will rapidly plummet.
  • In Conker's Bad Fur Day, the cheat code entry screen has an imp who will make fun of you for using cheat codes ("You cheating bastard!").
    • Entering an incorrect code however, will result in the fire demon saying that someone must have told you the wrong cheat. Do it a second time.... "Didn't work the first time, ain't gonna work the second time. Dipshit".
  • If you cheat in Master of Orion 2, you can still win and the game will give you a score, but it won't go on the scoreboard and the final screen will say, "The Council has decided to strip you of your title in the hopes that you won't CHEAT next time!"
    • When you cheat in multiplayer mode, the game will also tell the other human players about it a few turns later.
  • Enabling cheats in Section 8 disables saving your game, essentially making them entirely useless.
  • In Raptor: Call of the Shadows, you could enable a cheat that allowed you to - with a single button-press - fully restore the health of your ship AND give you a Death Ray, one of the best weapons in the game. However, it also reset your score to 0, which in this game meant reducing the money you earned up 'till then to 0. The moral, according to the manual, is that "You can cheat death, but not taxes." However, you can use this code multiple times during a mission, racking up a pile of death-rays, and then sell them afterwards for a huge profit - then use that to buy all of the best weapons in the game and several Power Shields.
  • In Earthworm Jim, the audio cue for entering a cheat code correctly is Jim yelling "Cheater!"note 
    • Using the debug code to jump to a late-game level in the SNES version would take you there, but nine times out of ten, after completing the level you were sent back to What the Heck?
    • It also includes an Easter Egg for entering one of the Doom cheat codes that mocks you for confusing the two games.
  • The Lion King on Sega Genesis had a cheat menu with level select, but there was a problem; after completing whatever level you'd selected, you'd automatically be taken back to level two of the game, which, incidentally, is the hardest level in the game. Both this and the above Earthworm Jim example seem to be a coding quirk rather than a deliberate example of punishing cheaters, since you're merely picking a replacement for level 1 and not your starting level (it's a debug mode).
  • StarCraft II will disable your single player achievements temporarily just after you use a single cheat code. Restart the game without using a code and you can earn achievements again.
  • OpenTTD has a nice little message when you open the cheats menu that "You will forever be marked for your actions!" and your name won't appear on the list of awesome people.
  • The first Destroy All Humans! game had no penalty what-so-ever for cheating, though in the developer commentary unlocked by completing the game, the developers "have no respect for you if you cheated." The sequels, except for Big Willy Unleashed, abolish the use of cheats completely, but cheats aren't really needed since the games became extremely easy.
  • In Jumper Two, turning "modifications" on will prevent the player from earning gems or getting best times in a stage until they are turned back off.
  • A Sonic the Hedgehog mod (found here) gives you this screen, normally limited to problems with the lock-on feature, when you try loading a savestate. It won't even go away when you try to reset the game.
    • In the Game Gear and Master System version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, if you use the cheat codes to get to the final stage, The Scrambled Egg Zone (initially only unlockable if you manage to find all the Chaos Emeralds) in order to save Tails, even after saving him, you will still get the bad ending where it's implied Tails was killed.
  • In the original Warlords Battlecry using cheats causes your hero to not earn any experience points at the end of the current level. This can be bypassed by saving, quitting to desktop and reloading just before winning the level as this deactivates all cheats.
  • Ken's Labyrinth has no love for cheaters. Upon level completion, it bellows "You cheated!" at you and gives a message at the top of the high score box, such as "Don't touch those cheat keys!". Worse still is what happens once you complete the episode you're on:
    • In Episode 1, it traps you in a cell with big flashing walls that say "GAME OVER" and bars that separate you from the actual map that the ending of Episode 1 happens on.
    • In Episode 2, the final door of the level normally leads to the ending. If you've cheated, it instead leads to a series of five ten-cents-to-pass doors that open onto a hall made of walls that say "NEXT TIME DON'T CHEAT!"
    • And in Episode 3, the game's last key door leads to a room with a holding cell for the game's bosses and the way back to Earth… unless you're a cheater, in which case it leads to a room with no exit and bars enclosing walls that say, as before, "NEXT TIME DON'T CHEAT!"
  • In Marathon 2, one level features two terminals that can only be reached by cheating. Their message? "Cheaters don't really win, and winners don't really cheat, Unless you're talking politics."
  • In Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus, if you input a Gameshark code to get infinite health, you will indeed get infinite health - but the Thievius Racoonus moves you get from bosses, which are essential to most of the platforming and/or sneaking sections, will only work with about 50 percent accuracy at best. So, sure, you'll have infinite health, but have fun falling off cliffs constantly or even failing at a SCRIPTED EVENT MOVE in the beginning of a boss fight (Mz. Ruby's mosquitoes), rendering the game basically unplayable without either massive amounts of patience or, y'know, turning the cheats off. The irony is that, looking back, the game is ridiculously easy, and there is really no reason to cheat.
  • In Strife, using cheat codes can cause bad Script Breaking. Warping to the last level prevents you from beating the game, since the one weapon the end boss is vulnerable to isn't given by the all weapons cheat. Cheating to get the ultimate weapon early causes the rebel base to change location before you perform missions required to access that new location.
  • This trope is discussed in Questionable Content here.
  • In Ragnarok Online to gain access to Amatsu's dungeon you need a written permission from the local ruler. To get this permission, you need to do a quest. However, you can get the permission from other characters and show it to the guard protecting the dungeon. But if you do this, the guard will say that you are cheating and will take the permission from you. Now both characters can't enter the dungeon.
  • Similar to the Metal Gear Solid 1 example, Konami's Tokimeki Memorial 2 punishes you with a disqualification if you use a rapid-fire controller during the 100-meter dash competition at the School's Sports Festival.
  • In the white chamber, entering the robot-control code before you've actually found it in-game results in a nice and amusing scene.
  • Microsoft alters the gamer cards of users on Xbox Live, permanently branding them as 'cheaters' (a special account designation) if it is discovered they have used external cheating/hacking devices with their console or games. This erases/resets their Gamerscore back to zero (and removes the ability to re-earn them), but they are otherwise still able to use the service and play online.
    • Any other tampering is grounds for a permanent gametag suspension.
  • In Mercenaries 2, activating cheats requires you to enter a code to enable Cheat Mode. If you do this, the game warns you that if you activate it, your save will be permanently in Cheat Mode, and you will be unable to use the online leaderboards. Since the online servers were taken down, this is no big deal. What it doesn't tell you is that it also prevents you earning Trophies/Achievements.
  • Railroad Tycoon 2's campaign mode can be bypassed with an "Immediate gold medal" cheat. However, this gives you the message "You win. Cheater..."
  • The second Space Hulk video game (Vengeance of the Blood Angels, the one that was on 3DO, PS1, and PC) accidentally did this on the third mission, where a couple of your squadmates fire through a door for an extended period of time and then follow you to the next section of the hulk. The exact amount of time varies because they stop firing when their weapon jams. One of the cheats prevents weapon jams.
  • Mega Man Battle Network 4: Red Sun/Blue Moon would set your maximum HP to zero if you use cheats too often, although this can be bypassed via the Customizer. When you get past this, it will also randomly purge your Zenny, forcing you to grind back how much cash you lost.
  • A very cruel example in Super Cosplay War Ultra. Want to unlock and play one of the boss characters in 1P mode? Have fun in Another Battle Royale mode, which is the only mode you can play with them. Oh, and Another Battle Royale mode makes you fight 2-4 non-mook characters at once and up to 6 characters per match (until you're fighting 4 mid-bosses and two of the final bosses,) while usually giving you the weakest of the mooks for a partner.
  • If a player is determined to have broke the EULA in Guild Wars the game mods make sure everyone knows they're a cheater. An enormous specter of the fallen god Dhuum appears and reaps the player, instantly kicking them off the game servers.
  • The Updated Re-release of Sonic the Hedgehog CD locks out achievements/trophies if you select the flight-capable Tails. In addition, said character's flight is shortened to avoid you breezing past the Climax Boss.
  • Ecco the Dolphin has a menu that can be accessed by pausing while Ecco is facing you and entering the correct button sequence. There's a level select part of the menu, but the problem is, you would be taken just as often as not to a damaged or buggy version of a level. It's even possible to end up returning to the opening sequence with its auto-scrolling mechanics, but with the ability to control Ecco. Often, these glitchy levels were identifiable by the fact that only the level password appeared, no level title or description. Or, the game would simply return to the title screen and freeze there. All you could do was reset the game. In addition, if you use the debug menu (or even are just using an emulator on PC to play) to beat the second game in the series, the "secret password" message is replaced with something along the lines of 'try playing without cheat mode'.
  • Adding scripts and mods to your installation of an X-Universe game, or activating the script editor in a save, results in that save gaining an unremovable ***modified*** tag. This tag means you can't upload your game stats to the Egosoft site's leaderboards or complete achievements. X: Rebirth did away with this, which was probably for the best because the game was nigh-unplayable without mods at release.
  • Within Eradicator, using the cheat codes, using console commands to start at the last level, or even using the level editor to get to the last level resulted in the ending text message indicating that, by cheating, you've lost your ability to unlock the secret bonus for defeating the game.
  • With Max Payne, Rockstar announced that cheaters in Max Payne 3's multiplayer will be forced to play in a specific playlist filled with nothing but other cheaters and have their leaderboard times/scores deleted/removed.
  • Attempting to use the "give all" cheat in Call of Duty: Black Ops' Zombies levels, rather than giving you more weapons than you can normally carry as it does in campaign, instead resets your points to 0, takes away all your guns and replaces them with the starting pistol, and causes the backstory character Samantha to laugh at you.
  • If you input a cheat code in Heroes of Might and Magic III, not only does a chat message appear saying "Cheater!!!", but if you finish the map and/or campaign, you get last place on the high score board regardless of your score.
  • In Duke Nukem II, the code for refilling your health resets the player's score to 0.
  • In the Deer Hunter (Series), trophies obtained during a game where cheats have been used are marked "Cheated!"
  • Thwaite accuses the player of using tool-assist in the joke ending for a No-Damage Run.
  • In Tonic Trouble, using any cheats results in a permanent Wanted poster shown in the bottom right corner, depicting the main character as a criminal with a big "Cheater" accompanying it.
  • TIE Fighter featured a pair of toggles in the in-flight menu to turn on invulnerability and unlimited ammo if the player thought the mission was too difficult. However, turning either on for even a second would cause the player's final score to drop by 90%.
  • For the mobile version of Candy Crush Saga, there's a well-known cheat that lets you replenish your lives without having to wait by setting the system time of your mobile device a couple of hours ahead. However, if you do this and then let your lives run out, there's a chance that the time counter to your next life will be reset to an ungodly amount of time (like tens of thousands of minutes ungodly). The sad heart that shows up on the No Lives Left screen will even occasionally cry black tears if this happens.
  • In Jade Empire, it is possible to use Save Scumming to win against Gambler Daoshen in the Imperial City. However, if you're not careful, and win 20 times in a row, Daoshen will explode, preventing you from playing again (obviously).
  • Fallout: New Vegas features blackjack, slots, and roulette wheels for you to spend your hard-won caps on. Even with extreme luck, winning isn't quite assured, and with low luck, winning is nearly impossible. Attempting to abuse your savegames to avoid losses will cause the game to automatically disable access to any gambling games for 60 seconds under the in-universe pretense of 'preventing cheating.' It isn't insurmountable, but it certainly is inconvenient, as a hand of cards or a spin of the wheel usually goes by in a fraction of that time. A fast player can get four to six rounds of blackjack (and about 1000 caps of potential profit) completed in that minute.
  • Think you can fake out Slendy's AI in Slender: The Arrival by glitching yourself outside of the boundaries? Think again. Turns out the developers had foresight, and not only will trying to walk around out of bounds drop you through the game map and instantly kill you, but Slenderman will taunt you as you die by saying, "Not even a bug in this game will save you from me."
  • There are third-party tools for Ingress. If you are caught using one (usually in the form of a large number of client-side requests), you'll most likely be demoted back to Level 1.
  • Kingdom of Loathing likes to play around with Perplexing Plurals; the plural of "kiwi" is "kiwus" for example, playing on the standard "-us" to "-i" pluralization convention. Certain Plot Coupons or other items that you can only ever legitimately have one of will often have a plural calling out the player on attempting to exploit the game — the plural form of the "Staff of Ed" is "Staves of Ed, you dirty exploiter you".
    • After some players used a glitch to obtain absurd amounts of in-game currency ("Meat"), the "Mr. Exploiter" item was offered by an NPC sales-penguin for 1 billion Meat—more than anyone could possibly get legitimately at the time. Players weren't punished for buying it, since it was only intended to drain the cheated Meat out of the economy (not everyone who had cheated Meat had performed the glitch themselves), but wearing an Exploiter puts "This person is the lowdown dirty bearer of a Mr. Exploiter" on your profile page.
    • The "scratch n' sniff sword" and crossbow let you put up to 3 stickers on them to change their bonuses. If you do anything sneaky with your browser in an attempt to add more than 3 stickers, your character tries (and fails) to stick one on the "business end" of the weapon and gets a negative Status Effect for their trouble.
    • There's one cookable item which can't be cooked using the game's user interface, as neither of its (no longer even easy to obtain) ingredients are tagged as cooking ingredients, so they won't show up on the list you select ingredients from. This is a browser-based game, so there are a number of ways to fake the result of selecting these ingredients and thus sending a "cook" request, which the game will comply. The ensuing item is useless, and its unlocked cooking recipe (which is still unusable through the UI even once unlocked) is filed under the recipe category "Dirty Exploits". Beyond that... the developers do notice people cooking this item, but may or may not feel like taking any action about it as that kind of exploit isn't really important to start with provided it isn't being done by a bot (and even then the main problem is the server load a bot can produce testing crafting recipes).
  • The cheat menu for the PC game Recoil has a confirmation button that says "I'M A". Highlight it with the mouse before clicking on it to return to the game, and it changes to "LOSER".
  • The original Fable has six clues leading to the Frying Pan. This is a weak weapon, but can receive up to five augmentations, making it potentially one of the strongest weapon in the game. If you dig it up without finding all six clues, it deals zero damage and has no augmentation slots.
  • Mario Kart DS has no major penalties for cheating. However, using any "Unlock all characters/vehicles" code via Action Replay will keep R.O.B., the game's final secret character, locked (This does not lock the player out from unlocking him naturally by completing either the Nitro or Retro GP's in Mirror, and even though R.O.B. isn't unlocked, his three vehicles become available). Secondly, any code that grants the maximum rank to a cup (three stars) will not retain when the game is turned off, even if the player does something to provoke the game to save.
  • Many Mario Party minigames that would be completely cheesed by pausing (typically counting and memorization games) will have certain elements disappear while the minigame is paused, only reappearing when the game is resumed. The Mario Party 8 Challenge minigame "Fruit Picker" even accounts for the Wii's Home Menu button being used.
  • In Shovel Knight, inputting a cheat code in name entry screen and confirming it will disqualify the player from getting feats on that file (unless it's a purely cosmetic code that doesn't affect the actual gameplay). Playing in Co-op mode or (prior to the King of Cards update) playing as a Custom Knight via amiibo will also disable feats.
  • Grand Theft Auto 2: Having the 'No Police' cheat active makes some levels impossible.
    • In a similar vein, any cheat that gives you infinite ammo in the original GTA (be it the games own cheat codes or a device like the Game Shark) will leave you unable to complete any mission that requires you to pick up a weapon to progress.
  • Downplayed in Undertale. If the game catches you editing your save file, it will usually acknowledge your shenanigans but not punish you. Only if your save file is in a blatantly unplayable state will it do anything drastic.
  • In The Wiki Game: When someone else completes the Wiki Walk, you are notified on the side and there's a link so you can see which pages they used. If you click that before you yourself have completed the Wiki Walk, you are told you aren't allowed to see until you're done. This can be annoying when you've given up and still have to wait 40 seconds for the game to end.
  • In Pony Island, you get chastised by the game's creator for cheating and not playing his game the way he intended. Given that the creator is Satan, however, and that it's literally impossible to progress in the game without cheating, you won't be inclined to feel guilty.
  • Downplayed in the text survival-porn RPG Flexible Survival. Using any of the game's various cheats lowers your score (and can send it into negative numbers), but the only thing having a high score gives you is a cheat code that grants you 200XP instantly at the start of the game (which will boost you to just a few points shy of 6th level). And given how easy it is to earn points in the game, it's not even really a significant penalty.
  • In The Stanley Parable, attempting to activate cheats in the console sends you away into a Serious Room where the Narrator gives you a lecture on cheating and locks you away for one hundred billion trillion years. Do it again, and he increases your sentence to infinity years. However, restarting the game reverts this effect.
  • The Witness: If you pause at any point during The Challenge, the entire sequence resets and you have to start all over. And it randomizes the puzzles each time, including order and location.
  • Ratchet & Clank (2016) allows the player to unlock unlimited ammo and invincibility by collecting Gold Bolts, but the game will disable gaining weapon XP and Ratchet's XP, respectively, when they're active. However, this also means that once you have all your weapons at level 10 and Ratchet's health at the cap of 200, there are no penalties.
  • Editing the game files for the Steam version of Eversion will unlock the "What Have You Done" achievement, which disables all other achievements and leaderboards until you undo your changes.
  • The Talos Principle: If you try to use a hexahedron to push a jammer on the opposite side of a door it's jamming, one of the developers will appear and put the jammer back on the side it belongs.
  • If you play Neko Atsume, DO NOT manually change the time on your device.note  If you then load the game up, it will know and prevent the game from updating temporarily. Sometimes it's a few days until this "soft ban" lifts, sometimes it's a year or two.
  • In Tone Sphere, the "judgedelta" cheat allows you to change the size of the timing windows. Entering a positive value for the cheat to make the timing windows looser will disqualify any scores you get with it.
  • In real life, electronic test administration software often come with an entire suite of anti-cheating counter-measures, from things as simple as logging mouse-movements and keystrokes to see if you are alt-tabbing to cheat-sheets, to completely disabling all functions on the computer that is not strictly related to the test (often by creating a window that takes up the entire screen, including the Start Menu on Windows even if Always On Top is enabled, and disabling moving or resizing the window), to using the webcam to check that you have not left your desk and tracking your eye movements to see if you are looking at cheating materials (useful for tests that are taken at home, not at supervised testing facilities).
  • In Super Mario 64's races with Koopa the Quick, as well as Cool, Cool Mountain's Big Penguin Race, using shortcuts disqualifies you from getting the star for that mission, as well as a stern talking-to from the other race participant. However, this only happens if you do it in front of them. If you're behind them (the Penguin) or very far in front (Koopa the Quick), you can cheat.
  • In Kirby: Planet Robobot, using amiibo in the Arena, True Arena and Meta Knightmare Returns modes will label your record with the amiibo icon to show that you used them. When sharing your records via StreetPass, other players will see the icon on your record if you used them.
  • In the Dawn of Souls and subsequent versions of Final Fantasy II (but not in the original game), if the player uses a cheat mechanism to beat the battle with the four Black Knights at the beginning of the game, which is supposed to be a Hopeless Boss Fight, they will be booted to the title screen.
  • Geekwad Series: In The Geekwad: Games of the Galaxy, if you type CHEAT as a password on the king's prison, Cybergeek gets angry and makes the ship explode.
  • In HuniePop, if you try to look at a girl's bio when she quizzes you about herself, it'll all be blocked out with the message "Nice try, cheater!". It will also be blocked out when a girl lets you ask her something about herself (likely to make it more difficult to ask her something you haven't yet).
  • Treasure Master was a game developed for a contest that gave you a chance to win real money and prizes, so attempting to play it through a Game Genie would cause the game to refuse to load.
  • Zoo Tycoon responds to the use of a cheat code by instantly decaying one section of housing. For rather obvious reasons, this is bad.
  • 7 Days a Skeptic calls out the player for trying to enter the captain's password on Barry's computer before the player should be able to figure out what that password is.
  • In League of Legends, it's impossible for most champions to spawn camp the enemy team because the spawn platforms will fire a laser to instantly kill you if you try. It's the only thing in the game that deals pure damage (so shields and armour won't help), and it's even the only thing that is immune to Bard's Tempered Fate ability, which affects even things like turrets and Baron Nashor. The dodge stat allowed the user to mitigate this damage, which is part of why it was removed.
  • The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth disables achievements during challenges, victory laps, seeded runs, and runs with balance-affecting cheats activated. Afterbirth+ originally disabled achievements if mods were enabled, but this was changed in an update to allow them if Mom's Heart has been beaten at least once.
  • In many games, if it detects an enabled cheat code immediately at start-up, it will stay at a white screen and refuse to load.
    • Similarly, in some Nintendo DS games, coming out of sleep mode while cheats are active can make the game freeze.
    • For both of these, it may be because of either the developer making it so, the game just being unable to handle starting up/resuming from sleep mode with the cheats there, or perhaps some cheat-detection coded straight into the DS.
    • And in the case you think you are lucky because the game managed to boot, prepare for another nasty surprise:
      Save data corrupted! Formatting save data.
    • In rare cases, you can load up the game just fine and even load your save data, but then you try to save and it tells that it was unable to save.
  • In Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story, if it detects cheats, it lets you progress all the way to Toad Town, and then softlocks you by refusing to let you get the Attack Pieces at the end of the blue shell tutorial. Of course, with the proper cheats, you can bypass this... until you absolutely need a blue shell to progress further.
  • Freeware Sonic the Hedgehog fangame Sonic Gather Battle quickly gained infamy for having a ludicrously invasive anti-cheat DRM. This includes invading your computer to steal information such as your IP address to upload to a cloud server, changing files in your OS' registry, and force-closing your internet browser if you even so much as type "cheat" or "hack" into it. It's so bad, that the game is considered by many to be malware disguised as a game.
  • Rhythm Heaven: In Megamix's Final Remix, if you try to cheese your way through the "Clap Trap" segment by repeatedly tapping/pressing A, the game will penalize you by locking out your inputs for the duration of the subsequent "Jungle Gymnast" and "Karate Man Senior" segments.
  • In Super Mario Bros. X, using any of the various cheat codes that give you items, lives, or other things such as free map movement will disable saving. Unless you type "redigitiscool" while on the map screen, which will let you save again.
  • In the Tetris: The Grand Master clone Heboris, if you are playing a mode or mission where the objective is surviving for a set amount of time, and you use a rotation system that lets you keep blocks from locking into place for an extended period of time, the timer will stop and the game will tell you to "PUT THE BLOCK!" until you actually lock it in place to let the timer resume.
  • Bloons Tower Defense:
    • In Bloons Tower Defense 5, there's a special mission with a 4/4 Wizard Monkey called the Wizard Lord, who in exchange for his immense power, sells your most expensive tower for 0 dollars at the end of every even round. If you decide to just spam special agentsnote , he will be unable to sell them and he will leave, causing you to lose the game.
    • Bloons TD Battles has no mercy if you cheat, especially if you're on mobile or Steam. If the mobile version detects you have been using cheats to get tons of medallions, earn a lot of battle energy, or if you play the game on a jailbroken device, then the game will look normal, but you are actually sent into a hacker pool where you can only play against other hackers in the hacker pool and won't be able to earn medallion rewards from weekly leaderboards or be able to join clans. Both versions (flash and mobile) also detects hacks throughout the game and instantly disconnects you if you use a hack to place towers or upgrade towers for free.
    • Bloons Tower Defense 6: While you can always quit out to the home page midgame in case of a leak about to happen, if you attempt this on C.H.I.M.P.S., clearing the mode would only give you the red C.H.I.M.P.S. medal when you reloaded it rather than giving you both the red and the black C.H.I.M.P.S. medals. If you cleared the other game modes for that map, you will only get a gold border rather than the pristine black border.
  • In Metal Slug Defense and its sequel, using any explicit tools that allows to cheat the game such as increasing the number of medals and sorties, the development team will make your account get suspended and cannot be recovered again once if you get caught doing this behavior which can be found in the rules.
  • Fortnite Battle Royale has Playgrounds mode, a limited-time mode where you and an optional squad can explore and build on the island without the hassle of other players trying to kill you. However, it doesn't let you gain XP or complete challenges.
  • Quadrax had set passwords for each level which obviously could be shared between different players. To prevent this, Quadrax III to V (made by different developer) had randomized passwords between installations (later installments would use account system instead). However, that's not the end of it: the game actually verifies if the previous level was effectively finished, otherwise even correct password wouldn't work, so anyone trying to brute force their way will just waste their time.
  • The Nintendo Wars series has these two rules: if you move a unit you can press B to undo the move if you haven't chosen an action for that unit yet (like, Fire, Wait, Capture, etc), and if a unit bumps into a hidden enemy along their path during Fog of War they are "ambushed" and immediately end their turn on the spot without being able to act. This means you can "scout" by continually choosing different moves and cancelling to see if paths are clear with one unit, then cruise another through a path you unfairly know is clear. To discourage this, the devs set it so during Fog of War a cancelled move still burns fuelnote . The game also neglects to tell you this, meaning most players find this out the hard way after thinking they'd found a clever way to game the system only to realize their units are burning a ton of fuel… Advance Wars: Days of Ruin prevents scouting by making it so that the unit doesn't actually move until you confirm the action taken.
  • Anti-Idle: The Game:
    • In Ultimate Avoidance, if you move your cursor outside of the game window, it's an automatic Game Over.
    • The exhaustion mechanic in Battle Arena, where holding down a key as an alternative for idling will have consequences. Holding down the key for 10 minutes causes your damage to take a nosedive, and holding it for another 10 minutes kills you.
  • WarioWare games do allow you to pause when playing, but the screens will turn black during the microgame if you pause there since you could cheat if the display wasn't covered up when paused.
  • Within an instanced dungeon in Perfect World called Dawnlight Halls, getting the "dice" middle path will have the player party fighting a gambling-loving succubus named Kailia the Otherworldly at the end of the path. Kailia loves punishing the player party for all failures to roll the correct number on the puzzle die in her arena by inflicting a Status-Buff Dispel and a Cooldown Manipulation debuff that CANNOT be dispelled (and as it lasts as long as two minutes, waiting it out is not a viable strategy either). If you didn't time your use of an invulnerability potion just right to prevent being afflicted (not considered cheating, as immunity potions have cooldown timers to prevent their abuse), then you will need to "sacrifice" FIVE of your skills by using them, with the understanding that the debuff will prevent you from using any of the sacrificed skills again for up to two full minutes. Thus if you're NOT playing either the main tank or the main healer, you'll probably get the idea to flee the battlefield and come back after Kailia has cast her debuff-and-purge. Deicide and Judgment modes, however, make escaping in a cowardly fashion an EXTREMELY risky tactic, as Kailia will constantly launch One-Hit Polykill strikes covering a quadrant of the battlefield, entirely unrelated to aggro (moving clockwise in Deicide, moving randomly in Judgment). If you're in the hallway leading from the dice-game board to the battlefield when her death-quadrant strikes one of the two front quarters of the battlefield, Kailia WILL strike you dead, even if you're on the apparent "safe" side of the hallway.
  • Valkyrie Profile 2 on PS2 has, hands down, the most vicious anti-cheat ever. You decide to make two saves before you start cheating, just in case. You then fire up your cheat device. And suddenly find that after a couple battles, the game crashes on battle entry. Bad cheat code, right? Boot without cheating, load the save file. It still crashes. Oh well something bad must have saved. Good thing you made that backup. You load the backup save, without cheats. It crashes too now, at the exact same spot. When the game catches you cheating, it infects the system save of the game. If any infected save is read, the infection that causes battle crashes spreads to other saves it can find. Your backup "just in case I got caught cheating" save has become worthless. You have to delete all infected saves (and since you can't tell what's infected that means every save from the game on the card) and start completely over without cheating. Don't even think of trying to switch memory cards. Delete all infected VP2 saves, do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars. Failing to do so will risk it spreading to your clean saves. Heaven help you if you failed to remove your little brother's infected memory card before booting the game, as now your saves are likely to crash too. Or failed to hard reboot before putting your card in.
  • Custerd's Quest: Type in "Cheat" and the game responds with "CHEAT MODE ERROR! PROGRAM CORRUPTED!" and boots you out.
  • Certain titles in the City Building series of games created by Impressions Games and Creator/Activision will reduce your mission score to 0 with the note "CHEATED - no score" if you use cheats meant to aid your game performance. Using the purely aesthetic ones will have no effect.
  • In Mega Man: Dr. Wily's Revenge, if you think about using a cheat that unlocks all weapons, they will deal no damage to most of the bosses. For example, using Atomic Fire on a Mega Man boss.
  • The Desert Bus game in Penn and Teller's Smoke and Mirrors requires several real life hours of play of driving the bus from Tucson Arizona to Las Vegas Nevada. Players trying to one up the game will usually place a heavy object on the acceleration button so the bus drives itself, only to find out that the bus occasionally drifts to the right so that the player is actually playing by keeping the bus straight. Letting the bus drift off the road makes it stall out and then a tow truck takes it back to the start with the same amount of time spent driving.
  • The Longing requires the player to wait 400 days for the main ending, with various events happening over the course of days, weeks, or months. Players using cheat engines to accelerate the game clock are teleported to a single room prison where they are chained to a massive ball and told to click a button 400 times to repent. Once this is done, the game tells them to return the game clock to normal or get sent back to the prison again.
  • Double subverted in Progressbar 95. The game does not complain if you use cheats, but you can delete their cheats.txt file in ProgressDOS to get the Fair Play bonus. If you don't use them or are playing on an easier difficulty, it's likely the better option.
  • Kittens Game players detected using an autoclickernote  will find themselves "awarded" with the achievement "Super Unethical Climax".
  • In The New Order Last Days Of Europe, an Alternate-History Nazi Victory mod for Hearts of Iron IV, the German starting tree disappears right after the failed assassination of Adolf Hitler, and there is no way to go past the first focus other than console commands. If the player uses cheats to unlock the Speer Plan focus, a special event has Albert Speer try to introduce his plans to work with the USA against Japan... only for Hitler to storm out of his room (still wearing his nightgown) and screaming about the player cheating, chewing them out for using console commands when he conquered all of Europe without them, before telling them to restart the whole game, and play fairly this time. Speer, completely baffled as to what Hitler is screaming about, decides to restart the heating system, hoping that Hitler's mental breakdown was just the result of a lapse in the air conditioning.
    "Mein Gott! Had he taken his pills yet?"
  • In Super Mario Bros. 3, the Infinite 1-Ups trick will not work if you're using a P-Wing (the infinite flight power-up), as points are stacked when you kill an enemy by jumping on them, and landing on an enemy while flying doesn't count as a Goomba Stomp.
  • The Infinite 1-Ups trick is more intentionally parodied in Super Paper Mario, where attempting it will actually cause your score to drop.
  • The NES adaptation of 1943 features a Password Save system that encodes your ship's stats and the starting stage into a five-character password. The password contains a checksum that not only makes it more difficult to change your stats or stage just by changing one character (although there are walkthroughs that have cracked this checksum), but it also imposes a minimum starting stage based on your ship's stat sum, so you can't just, say, go into stage 2 with a maxed-out ship.
  • Infinitode 2: To prevent cheated scores on the leaderboards, a validation server receives a full account of all player actions taken during a game, and completely replays each game submitted, skipping any impossible/invalid actions, to assign the score.
  • DX Ball 2: Entering "eureka" while in-game causes a random power-up to appear each time you press a key. In normal mode, bad power-ups can be generated, including the one that takes one of your lives away. This code also disqualifies you from the high score list.
  • In Frostpunk, during The Last Autumn expansion, if you try to abuse Short Shifts by running them to maximize the productivity and safety bonuses, then changing the hours back to a normal or extended shift near the end to avoid sacrificing work hours, your workers will wise up to what you are doing the second time around and call you out on your "cheating", and discontent will rise.
  • Urbanoids: There's a cheat menu available in which you can make bullets free to fire, be invulnerable, or make your bullets kill anything instantly, but the game admonishes you for accessing it and mentions the game is supposed to be entertaining enough without any tampering.
  • In BitLife, if you try to change the time so that you can rob a train, you will be killed instead.
  • Shedletsky, the creator of the classic 2008 Roblox game Sword Fight On The Heights, introduced a badge called "Touch the Divine" back when it was quite popular. Said badge was impossible to get through normal means, and any who did get it would out themselves as a cheater, leading to a permanent ban.
  • Most, if not all free-to-play mobile games are directly tied to the device they are running on and need access to the device's store (via cell data or Wi-Fi) and clock as a way of checking to see if the user has used cheats to bypass a time wall or evade a pay wall to extend pay time or obtain paid items for free. Consequences for these cheats can range from the "free item" being taken away to save data for the app being deleted to a super-long next play timer. In addition, many apps now include warning messages saying that using cheats to obtain in-game purchase transactions for free may be considered a crime.
  • Stardew Valley has an exploit where setting your name or that of a farm animal to an item's code number in brackets causes that item to be added to your inventory whenever an NPC says the name. In version 1.5, doing this gets you reprimanded in the chatbox by ConcernedApe, Mr Qi, or Grandpa's Spirit (but it still works).
  • During the Spamton NEO fight in Deltarune, holding down the Enter-key and pressing Z allows you to skip the chargeup of your Charged Attack and spam it endlessly. Doing this will cause Spamton to turn red, and makes the fight more difficult by making his attacks faster and more durable.
  • In sim-racing video games (like Project CARS, the ToCA/GRID series or Gran Turismo 4 and onwards) the player can receive warnings, penalties (it can be a forced slowdown penalty or finish line penalty) and disqualifications by cutting off tracks, ignoring yellow and blue flags and reckless driving depending the game.
    • In Gran Turismo 4 you get a 5 second penalty if you crash into walls or the cars. Only applies in Special Condition Events and in Driving Missions.
    • In Gran Turismo 5 and onwards you can get a penalty for cutting off tracks, wallriding and hitting rival cars. This applies in the Gran Turismo Rally special event in 5, the Super races in 6 and some of Endurance races in Sport and in 7.
    • Also in Sport and in 7 you lose the "Clean Race Bonus" except in four races used to farm a lot of money prior to the 1.26 update like the famous World Touring Car 600 in Tokyo East (especially the ones that you could use the 2500HP Dodge SRT Tomahawk X Vision Gran Turismo), World Touring Car 700 in Le Mans, World Touring Car 800 in Sargdena and Spa 24h.
    • In the said update of 7 you can finally sell cars. However you can't sell the same car in the same day so if you abused the glitch to get a lot of Honda NSX Gr.B Rally Cars in the 1.17 update before they patched in the next update, you will wait for weeks, months or even years just to sell all of the Honda NSX Gr.B Rally Cars depending how you have.
  • Facebook videogames has anti-cheat measures when using Cheat Engine programs with the deleted videogame Car Town being the most example of those.
    • Hacking Gold Coins and/Blue Points only causes the values to be changed meaning that is not permanent. (i.e: if you have 50,000 Gold Coins, then you hack and if you want to get a faster car like the McLaren F1 GTR Longtail which costs a whopping 7,5 millions and the result is that you didn't have enough Gold Coins. Hacking the Blue Coins and attempting to buy any car that costs Blue Coins 150th Italia and F2012 respectively with a huge cost of 995 and 1,000 Blue Coins and the purchase is denied). Refreshing the page will revert back to the standard amount of Gold Coins and Blue Coins you have with a slight increase. Say that if you had the aforementioned 50,000 Gold Coins then you hack while doing a single Premium Antenna Job and refreshing you actually have 55,750 Gold Coins. The same also applies to Tokens from Game Show.
    • While hacking Cumulative Score is not too bad, picking a really underpowered car like a stock 33 HP Isetta against a 1300 HP McLaren F1 LM as your rival, then hack your cumulative score to beat him/her it displays "You Win!" but your prizes are consolative (10 Gold Coins and 1 XP). However this also counts from the objective "Win 5 races against faster opponents" from Car Town EX. The same also applies if you hack the horsepower of your underpowered car. Example: a 2000 HP Isetta beating a 1300 HP McLaren F1 LM.
      • In the original Car Town, setting a higher value of Cumulative Race Score than 32767 will crash the game with a error message. This problem is fixed in Car Town EX where the limit is 999,999,999 which exceeding them, will cause the values to be negative.
      • Hacking the Cumulative Race Score during the "Cumulative Race Score" leaderboards counts as the scored you hacked but upon refreshing the page, it resets to the original value you reached. This means that you cannot get the Bronze Mystery Box, the car and the Diamond Mystery Box even through a message indicating that the said items are in your storage.
      • Hacking the Cumulative Race Scores in the first tournament can be dangerous as you can get banned from the game and you can't unban until you contact to the game. In the original Car Town, you receive a STOP sign indicating that they have technical difficulties while in Car Town EX appears an error message when it shows "Logging into Car Town..."
      • Doing so in the second tournament in where you can win a Mazda 6 Skyactiv it resets to zero while in Car Town EX in the latter tournaments it shows an error message.
    • Hacking the stage values in any adventure "like Top Gear, Japan Adventure etc" will drop back to the original stage position. This means you get an error message when trying to reach Stage 200 and get the Grand Prize car early.
  • An in-universe example happens in Zero Time Dilemma: In a timeline where five X-Passes are already known, Junpei gets the idea for C-Team to SHIFT to another timeline, have he and Carlos die so that Akane can learn their X-Passes, then all three of them SHIFT back to the former timeline and use them to escape. After entering the passes, the computer informs them that X-Passes from other timelines won't work, and sics a Killer Robot on them for trying to cheat.

    Non-Video Game Examples 
  • Break It to Make It: Every contestant is given an item they need to use to break the target with, and they have to use said item. Breaking the target without using the item results in a penalty.
  • Invoked by Spirit Of The Law during the overview of the Celts civilization from Age of Empires II: SOTL requested an agreement to be signed before explaining the sheep bonus that allowed Celt players to steal them from the enemy. The agreement requested players to not use this against him when playing the game.
  • The Zork gamebooks had an entry that asked for an item that doesn't exist and called you out for cheating if you went for it.
  • A strip of the webcomic Kid Radd spoofed this with them entering an EarthBound-like game, and beating the boss in a way that the game coding did not allow. They got sent to a Bad Ending for those who used cheat devices.


Video Example(s):


"No flying allowed!"

The challenge is to stay in midair for as long as possible and to not hit the ground. Iance had their hopes up in using Lightning, a flier, as an advantage to undermine the other teams, but tempting fate ensues as Four declares flying to not be allowed, disappearing the non-solid fliers like Black Hole and Lightning and crippling the solid ones like Cloudy and Puffball.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (6 votes)

Example of:

Main / NoFairCheating

Media sources: