Monday, July 26th 2010

Heads Roll in Lords of Overclocking Competition Cheating Scandal

Over the last week, the enthusiast community witnessed high drama as some world-renowned overclockers were disqualified from the MSI Lords of Overclocking online competition for engaging in malpractice. Futuremark noticed that some validation entries from top scoring candidates originated from the same setup, confirmed from consistency in Futuremark product key and PCI devices. Top three position-holders at the LoOC competition admitted to using scores generated by a third person, AndreYang. Hiwa, eXtremetweaker.de, KJ and Skinnee were named as disqualified candidates.

What happened next could come as a surprise to some. Major overclocking communities banned these individuals, some permanently, with enthusiast charts aggregator HWBOT handing out a 1 year ban to each of them (although HWBOT wasn't involved in that competition), and XtremeSystems.org issuing lifetime bans. Even as some question the motives behind Andre sharing scores with four people at the same time, the candidates deny that Andre had any intention to profit from it, other than just helping.

eXtremeTweaker.de said “He helped me cause he knew that I worked hard for this competition and cause he knew that i want come back Taipei to see someone...So what do you think is his profite? Again, it is not ok but I cannot see that Andre could gain anything from doing this”. “Andre didn't get one CENT on LOC, he never sold the scores to me or other ppl . As I told before he gave me score on my request. Andre tried to help us”, Hiwa adds.

In several of their statements, the overclockers who sought help from Andre are speaking in his defense, and allege that the bulk of the hostility is towards Andre, when it was they who sought help, and when Andre was not even a participant. "I spent a lot of time in benching but all my scores useless for this competition and i tought i will upload scores with Q3QP but then i talked with Andre and he said he can help me...I know it is not ok and it is only my fault! It is not ok that all people here more against Andre than against us. He benched his own hardware and he also did not compete in this event. So i think the main fault is 100% on our side. What he did is not fair but as i said the main fault is on our side," said Afrokalle (aka eXtremeTweaker.de).

Communities that banned him seem to have reacted very strongly, much to Andre's disgrace, they stress that the sanctity of overclocking competition charts need to be maintained well, and practices such as these prevent candidates who work hard for their achievements from reaching the top spot. "We feel it’s our duty to stand up for the sake of the community and take actions based on what happened in the Lords of Overclocking competition. By sharing scores, you don’t only commit fraud in the competition, but also hurt overclockers from our small community that are trying to win this ticket by working hard to achieve their goal. This is something that no overclocking community, how small it may be, should tolerate," says a HWBOT representative. Fellow overclockers also expressed shock.

However, the quantum of punishment meted out to Andre still hangs in the scales. AndreYang was a leading overclocker from Taiwan, credited with topping the charts. On the other hand, malpractice in an overclocking competition, even with the motives to merely 'help' and not 'profit', is anti-competitive.

Like every competitive sport, overclocking has evolved into professional level, and with it came all the spoils of Pro competition. The competition at the top tier is extremely heated, with competition going beyond just seeing your name on the top. It involves sponsorships and endorsements from hardware manufacturers, some of which even organize competitions like this one.Sources: VR-Zone, HWBOT
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35 Comments on Heads Roll in Lords of Overclocking Competition Cheating Scandal

#1
Asylum
Thats a shame to see someone like Andre doing something like that.

I hope they ban all who was involved and set a example to the community that this wont be tolerated.

Theres alot of people that put alot of money into those competitions just to place in the top 5.

Then for Andre to be sharing scores is just unacceptable.
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#2
cadaveca
My name is Dave
LoL on the story. Tip of the iceberg, and currently noone can see the bottom of it.

Considering most of these guys work at OEMs or review hardware on websites, it's kinda been industry-only participation for many years, and that's perfectly fine, IMHO, as it's really mostly marketing. Funny that they banned ES(free, generally) chips...it kinda seperated things with ES and retail before, and now guys at OEMs could dissappear in a crowd.


They should just simply stop having these competitions. Then none of this would be an issue!


I predict some new OC'ers entering the scene real soon...at least...new OC IDs.:laugh:


Good to see these guys policing themselves though. I kinda wish HWBOT would be something more than it is now when it comes to this sort of thing.
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#3
mlee49
That explains alot of custom titles I've seen over at XS.
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#4
(FIH) The Don
how stupid can they be :banghead::banghead::banghead:
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#5
Paulieg
The Mad Moderator
From what I've seen, this has caused a real shake up over at XS. I think even Vapor has resigned in connection to this.
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#6
erocker
Andre sharing scores is bad, but the people taking his scores are worse. Why people need to seek attention and status by cheating in an overclocking competition is pathetic.
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#7
Paulieg
The Mad Moderator
by: erocker
Andre sharing scores is bad, but the people taking his scores are worse. Why people need to seek attention and status by cheating in an overclocking competition is pathetic.
Agreed. This incident has also shed some light on previous overclocking competitions where there was some suspicion of cheating by some prominent overclockers. I think this is really just a tip of the iceberg. It's sad really. All for some free hardware and a trip to Taipei.
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#8
(FIH) The Don
i think its the same as with every scammer/scam, once they start and it goes well its hard for them to stop and then one day it all falls apart bigtime
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#9
Kreij
Senior Monkey Moderator
If you have to cheat to win a contest (of any kind) it does not say much for your skills/ability.
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#10
mlee49
by: Kreij
If you have to cheat to win a contest (of any kind) it does not say much for your skills/ability.
But it does say quite a bit about ones character and integrity.
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#11
W1zzard
by: Kreij
If you have to cheat to win a contest (of any kind) it does not say much for your skills/ability.
what about the ability to identify weak spots and exploit them? :P
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#12
erocker
by: W1zzard
what about the ability to identify weak spots and exploit them? :P
Bernie Madoff comes to mind. Bless him. :)
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#13
mlee49
by: W1zzard
what about the ability to identify weak spots and exploit them? :P
How would you feel if the contest hosted by TPU were found to be tampered with?
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#14
Wile E
Power User
by: erocker
Andre sharing scores is bad, but the people taking his scores are worse. Why people need to seek attention and status by cheating in an overclocking competition is pathetic.
Agreed. This is just like cheating in racing. It's pretty disgusting, imo. I lost all respect for them.
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#15
=TWP=WOLF
I was about to express my opinion in the subject, but Erocker did it so good that my words would only be an exaggeration.
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#16
CDdude55
Crazy 4 TPU!!!
Wow, that's crazy.

Such a shame to see such a great competiton being ruined by some idiotic cheaters.:shadedshu
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#17
copenhagen69
by: mlee49
How would you feel if the contest hosted by TPU were found to be tampered with?
they are no worries ;)





... above was a joke :wtf:
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#18
theubersmurf
by: W1zzard
what about the ability to identify weak spots and exploit them? :P
Sounds like the rationale of a disciple of sirlin.
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#19
overclocking101
it doesnt surprise me much tbh, BUT for the number 1 in the world (ANDREyang, up until a few days ago) to sell scores to people is a disgrace. If you have to cheat to win a semi final WTF are you going to do when you are sitting in tapaei at the FINALS! I am a proud overclocker, I dont cheat to win, I dont use ES hardware, and I damn sure aint sponsored, but if someone such as skinnee was willing to do this to get sponsors what does this show about skinnee labs, how do we know he wasnt lying during reveiws to get free things from sponsors?? IMO this not only discredits skinnee and vapor, but skinnee labs as well. Vapor "claims" he "went to sleep" 45 mins before skinnee submited the sold scores, BUT in skinnees first staement at XS he states VAPOR was with him, no where does it say vapor went to bed. IDK it sounds like a bynch of BS to me. and is also shedding light upon the gigabyte event that was won obviously by a hack of some sort that nobody but fugger and vapor know about, because the scores just dont make sense. IDK I'm kind of glad I dont frequent XS anymore at this point
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#20
cadaveca
My name is Dave
LOD isn't a "unknown hack", per se. Used to be standard practice in benching to play with LOD. However, graphics end up being basic wire-frames with a bit of colour, so graphic load isn't as high as normal = higher scores. When ATi and nV had differing levels of "LOD", things started to change, and it become the norm to not adjust LOD, as it made comparisions greatly inaccurate.

And if you expect reviewers to not have favorites, you're asking them to not be human. We all have things we favor, whether it's computer parts, or the brand of underwear you buy. As long as it's out in open, it's no big deal. Just apply salt when needed.

While this news is a bit troubling, I don't see it as unexpected, nor even slightly surprising. But in the end, I think it's like W1zzard says...in the end it'll do more good than bad, at least for those entering that crowd.

With people sharing parts "non-essential" to the score still going on, it's still a waste of time for most people to even bother with these "competitions"....rather than a single person getting use of that good part for benches, we have whole teams of people passing parts around.

So to compete, and compete well, you need a team.

And teams with more people will most naturally have more access to parts, and more funds to push others out of competition with them.

I think it's all just one big farce, and really, with all this stuff...just your normal reality TV show, to me. Good for a laugh now and then.:laugh:


Oooooooooooh...scandal. Bring me some popcorn, quick!:rolleyes:
Posted on Reply
#21
overclocking101
FUGGER and VAPOR at GOOC DID NOT use a LOD hack. they openly admited it was something to do with changing directly D3D etc etc. I know full well what LOD is hell theres even a program to automate the registry hacks setLOD but I do know full well that it doesnt make a 20FPS change, and that was the difference. either way whatever
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#22
Cold Storm
Battosai
Yeah, the first thing I thought about when I read this at work.. Skinnee Labs.. It makes one think if it was really done right.. looking at how long it took to do things and such.. Only would think like this due to what has happened..

It's a sad day in the oc world because of this.. I've never seen the reason to cheat in any of that.. why would you? when one would then have to "show it" again.. Produce it again in some since of "achievement".

"The words will be my Tale. The actions will be my Legend"
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#23
HillBeast
The way this article was worded confused me first time. I had to read it again to understand but let me just confirm: these overclocking experts hialed for all their magnificence and knowledge in overclocking copied their results from this 'Andre' guy?

Shows they aren't so maginificent at overclocking like we were once led to believe. No respect for these guys now. None. If you aren't winning then just take the defeat. Don't turn yourself into a cheater in an attempt to get the top score (which like 5 others did too).
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#25
cadaveca
My name is Dave
by: overclocking101
FUGGER and VAPOR at GOOC DID NOT use a LOD hack. they openly admited it was something to do with changing directly D3D etc etc. I know full well what LOD is hell theres even a program to automate the registry hacks setLOD but I do know full well that it doesnt make a 20FPS change, and that was the difference. either way whatever
Well, I've heard two things..LOD, and renaming the app. Both can have signifgant performance differences.

But either way, I wasn't there, so I don't know what the story is.


Either way, it's just more drama, and it makes me chuckle. I could care less...the scores don't matter to me, who wins...legal or not.

Personally, i think most of the people who win shouldn't have been entering in the first place. Work for a website or OEM, you shouldn't be involved. If you qualify for a final event one year, you should be barred the next, so others get a chance....because it's really all down to the hardware...parts today take all the real skill out of it.

When you don't even need to pull out a soldering iron to get a WR, and just playing with settings...well...not much skill involved in that at all, IMHO.

by: HillBeast
The way this article was worded confused me first time. I had to read it again to understand but let me just confirm: these overclocking experts hialed for all their magnificence and knowledge in overclocking copied their results from this 'Andre' guy?
Andre sent all of them the file from a run he did himself. The same run. When running 3DMarks, you can choose to save the file, as many overclockers dont like to even have LAN enabled when clocking. The file can be submitted from any system. They got these files, and submitted them as thier own. One of them said he did it because someone else had "cheated", and he didn't want to see him win a spot to go to Taiwan. I think the "Andre" results are a direct result of this other "cheat", but I'm guessing.
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