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Mardi 29 juillet 2014  
Patch 1.17.0 (579)

We're aiming at releasing a client update on Wednesday. Maintenance should be approximately 2 - 3 hours and will start at 9 AM UTC.

Change and Additions

    New Weapon

      The Covert Ops Battle Rifle - Assault or COBR-A.

        With its state-of-the-art lightweight body, the COBR-A is an exceptionally mobile platform designed to engage targets up to medium-range while on the move, or provide accurate harassment from further out. The COBR-A comes in two visual variations: the Venom, which has a vertical grip and the Adder, which has an angled grip and mounted scope. You can lease a zero-slot or open 3-slot Venom from Wilde, in the Joker Distribution in Breakwater Marina. Both the Venom and Adder will be available through ARMAS soon.

    New Weapon Skin

      Added a Spanish weapon skin. This will be made available on ARMAS soon.

    Fair Fight

      We've added the ability for users to report a suspected player using the /report <player_name> chat command.

    Please Be Aware

      The system works in the same way report functionality works in other games. If you are simply a player who is very good at the game, then you have nothing to fear. Additionally, the system has checks in place to handle players abusing the command.


      Deputy Badge (Waist / Chest) has been made accessible to both male and female characters. It will be available to all enforcers by default in the Badges section of the Wardrobe.

    Useables (Satchel Charge)

      We've upped Satchel Charge explosion damage. It will now straight up destroy anything short of a Fresno.

    UI (Hud)

      Added a unique icon for Vehicle Kills.

    UI (Options)

      Removed the ability to change the video resolution in APB when in Full screen Windowed mode - this uses your desktop resolution.
      When selecting Full screen Windowed, we now replace the resolution text with "Desktop Resolution"
      Now hiding the custom video settings entry when not using custom advanced video options.

Bug Fixes

    Exploit Fix (Deployables)

      We've restricted the jump height from deployable items, like the large ammo box. This is to prevent players using them to get to areas of the map they are not meant to be able to access.

    Display (Full Screen Windowed)

      The full screen window now resizes with the desktop display resolution.


      Backstabber no longer appears in medals list on achievements page.


      Tweaked OCSP description to be accurate to the function of the weapon.
      Silenced PDW-57 now has correct muzzle flare.
      References to STAC-10 are now using the correct name, instead of the "SACR" which was the original name.
      OCA-626 Whisper RT1 now has the Silencer mod on it. Note: This has no effect on the actual weapon, it's just a visual representation of something that was already happening.

    Vehicle Spawners

      We have adjusted the location of a few vehicle spawn points, which could previously have caused larger vehicles to intersect with nearby walls when they were spawned.

    UI (Hud)

      Fixed an issue where the vehicle kill icon was missing from the center of the screen when run over.

    UI (District Select - Text)

      We have removed the suffix from Abington Towers listing on the District select so that it fits into the box correctly.
Bjorn Book-Larsson

Lundi 21 juillet 2014  
Fighting Fair in APB Reloaded with FairFight

...and the sad naming and shaming of 200+ players.

I bet many of you know “FairFight” as the anti-cheat system currently in use in several top tier games, including Battlefield 4 and Titanfall.

But I bet you don’t know that the Reloaded team has been working closely with the FairFight team for the past several months to integrate and optimize FairFight in APB.

When were able to combine our existing tools and systems with the FairFight system, we were suddenly able to review a vast range of information and get much better visibility into what players were doing in the game.

Some of these new insights made us very happy; for example it turns out that the numbers of actual cheaters in APB is much lower than the community would believe. But some insights made us terribly sad; players with as many as 8,000 hours of playtime were caught red-handed cheating.

What kind of cheating did we catch? The current combination of tools can now catch a wide range of activities using almost every conceivable method of detection. The FairFight system has been great, since it has acted as a “key” to let us pull together a lot of disparate the data into one single effort. As a result we found lots of players who actively had a cheat running, but, sort-of didn’t use it much, and often appeared to be running mostly legit, while relying on their purchased cheat tool “to cheat just a little bit.”

Of course any cheat is a gross violation of our terms of service, and just as when pregnant; there is no “a-little-bit-of-pregnant” category in the human gestational cycle, just as there is no “a-little-bit-of-cheating” category when playing a fair game.

The sad naming and shaming of 200+ players

Today as we formally move out of “stealth mode” to ensure a fair APB game going forward we are also publicly listing a sampling of 212 people whom were detected cheating sometime in the last few weeks or months. The list of names can be found here. It’s not comprehensive (the total number of bans are several times this list), and it includes players caught using several different detection methods. A few were even tagged by the “trusty” old Punkbuster as well, though FairFight enabled us to truly be efficient in tracking down all these miscreants.

In the “name and shame” section we also opted to not only list the character names of those who cheated, but decided to take it a big step further and list the time spent playing the game, player rank, server, clan and the range of real cash each player had spent in the game before getting terminated.

APB Cheat Stats

There is some good news that came out of our intense cheat review; on a daily basis, the number of cheaters who log in to the game stayed pretty constant around 1.2% of all players (some of which were re-rolls). Inversely 98.8% of players in APB played on a daily basis without any trace of any cheat (which we are very thankful to see)! So as usual, it’s the 1% who is messing up the world for the rest of humanity.

For some even more startling facts; 60% of the players banned in this sample were paid players. That’s surprising on several levels. For comparison, about 10% of the monthly unique players in APB make a new purchase in the game in any given month. On a cumulative basis about 30% of all players playing the game have paid money for something at some point during their account history.  So in simple terms, paid players turned out to be 2X over-represented in the initial ban sample, compared to the APB population as a whole.

Another startling fact; paid players who were banned had on average 260 hours of play time in the game, had played for over 1 year, and had on average spent $180 on virtual goods.

Now clearly they got their monies worth already (in comparison they could have chosen to pay $59.99 for 20-40 hours of play time in a traditional single-player game, or pay for 12 months of MMO subscription time for about that amount of money) and it's crazy that they chose to have themselves eliminated from the "sport of APB" by cheating.

A Few Bad Apples Spoiling All the Fun

So why has there been such a giant perception that cheaters are rampant in APB, if the ratio of cheaters, even before FairFight went live, was only around 1% (when we were just observing what was going on during stealth-mode)?

Well, there are really two explanations.

First, yes the few cheaters that exist have a disproportionately negative impact on the matches (snapping, appearance of cheating etc.) partly BECAUSE they also tend to be active players. So they do affect a much larger number of matches than 1%.

Second, it also turns out that APB is a REALLY HARD GAME to master and play. In spite of what everyone says, APB takes some serious skill (much more so than money). Locational awareness, amazing twitch-skill, strategic planning, and a flawless group to play with are critical to success in the game. And in fact we found ourselves analyzing some matches where EVERYONE accused everyone else of cheating, but no one was actually cheating!

A few of the players in those matches were in fact just THAT much better at the game than everyone else. It’s a really tough feeling when you realize you got crushed in some inexplicable way, and a very common immediate reaction is to accuse everyone of cheating. Statistically there is a very good chance they actually were not cheating the last time you played them. They probably (though not always of course) were just better players, a better group etc.

Cheating “just a little bit”?

Even more fascinating, as we go through the list of cheaters, we realize that often they did NOT use a cheat to crank all their stats (well of course, some idiots did), and our only conclusion must be that some of them have been using cheats as a ‘crutch,’ probably because they thought the other people around them were beating the crap out of them (even if statistically they were likely NOT to be cheating).

Notice that the overall K/D ratio of the cheaters in the sample name and shame list is around 1.7 – meaning for every 17 kills the cheaters died 10 times. That’s around 70% ahead of break-even, but not massively better than players with equivalent time spent in game.

And finally, we also found accounts where it appears the players have been playing legit in the account for a long time, and then for some reason or another decide “to just try a little cheating.” That’s sort of like “just trying a little meth.” Your mom and your local DEA officials always tell you “don’t do it” to the meth. And we say the same about cheats. Don’t do it. One day you will be caught.

Should we enable Purgatory?

So while we are very glad to see some of our community members go due to these flagrant violations of our terms of service, one idea that we keep kicking around is to potentially enable a “Purgatory” District.

The idea is that cheaters don’t get banned right away (which of course doesn’t happen since the system runs on various delays), and instead freshly detected cheaters get kicked into special cheaters-only districts, where they can continue playing against other cheaters without initially realizing they have been tagged (or whole groups get thrown in there as long as they have a cheater on their team). Titanfall has implemented a similar system, and it seems to work reasonably well for them.  The main reason for us to consider doing this is purely for research. We benefit from continuing to capture data from those who cheat.

But we also realize this is a sensitive item for all players. We’d be curious to hear your feedback on this type of district (maybe it becomes a ‘mass-spectate’ thing where you can view them all cheating each other)? No final decision has been made so far about this type of new district type.

In fact – this is NOT free!

In jest I had added a post-script to last week’s ‘teaser’ post about making an announcement that said “hint: it’s free.”

Make no mistake. Spending THIS many resources to combat cheating, even with an excellent partner like FairFight (who have a great team, but of course needs to charge for their services), combined with all the other related internal and external tools involved, it all takes a massive amount of resources away from the Reloaded team. And again puts us in a position where we have to prioritize anti-cheat efforts which directly takes away critical resources that could be better spent on new shiny features and new systems in the game.

But in this case we feel the investment will be worth it in the long-term. And we are hopeful we will continue getting great support from our devoted players who spend countless hours in the game every month.

Final words

The other big project that’s ongoing is of course the engine upgrade, which continues moving forward at a steady pace. However, what started as one project has now morphed into two related projects that have much larger teams attached. The details of which I cannot release “next week,” but I promise that it will be “sooner than SOON™.” And I am personally super-thrilled about what our teams are already working on, and again, I hope to issue a really detailed update as soon as I am able to disclose all the details.

In the meantime, we continue being incredibly thankful for all your ongoing support, and hope to share more exacting news as it becomes available.

And just to cap it off – as an APB player, did you know that APB Reloaded is in fact the 19th most played game on Steam of ALL TIME, just ahead of Borderlands2 and just behind Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2? At least according to this Ars Technica article (and which, from our internal numbers, we can certainly corroborate, if not ponder that Ars may have under-counted some stuff).

In short, we are much looking forward to when we can share our other exciting updates.

In the meantime – play fair! And if you want to see the conversations that this has sparked – then you can go here to check out threads like these in our social district forums.


Bjorn Book-Larsson

Lundi 21 juillet 2014  
Patch 1.17.0 (573)

Hello everyone and welcome to the 1.17 release of APB!

For this release series we've been focusing on often-requested bug fixes as well as implementing a new district rule set to help us gather data on our matchmaking system, so that we can make informed decisions on how we can improve the overall experience - not just for existing players but for new players too. We're calling this new rule set "Open Conflict". In Open Conflict we've changed the matchmaking rules so that missions will start based on available players - skill is not considered at all. As matches will not be created based on skill level (threat), no changes to your threat level will occur in these districts - your threat and rating will also be hidden from other players. Be aware that we do expect these districts to provide a slightly uneven experience for players but we hope you at least have fun in these districts while we gather our data.

In this release we've also changed the way we store your account and machine settings, we've enhanced video display options, improved the client and server parity to alleviate the "ghost shot" issue, and we've fixed issues like car surfer causing vehicles to explode - you can find more details on all this and more below!

We hope you enjoy this release and we'll hopefully have more details of upcoming changes soon ™, as we know you are eager to hear more about upcoming contacts, weapon balance changes, Overkill in the EU and a progress update on the Unreal Engine (all of which are still happening, honest!).

See you on the Streets of San Paro,

- The Reloaded Team -

We're aiming at releasing a client update on Wednesday. Maintenance should be approximately 2 - 3 hours and will start at 9 AM UTC.

Change and additions

    New Mode - Open Conflict

      The gloves come off in this special Financial district that uses the "Open Conflict" matchmaking rules. In Open Conflict, opponents will be selected purely based on who is available - the system won't take into account player skill, instead it looks to match the first eight available (four per faction) players against each other. If you have the courage to take on anyone, regardless of skill, then this mode is for you. When you are in these districts, there will be no visual representation of other player's skill or rating.

      Please Note : Open Conflict uses a special set of match making rules that we are using to gather live data to help us improve the matchmaking system and player experience. We are aware that Open Conflict will be an uneven experience for players but we hope you still have fun in these districts while we gather our data.

    Game Settings

      We moved character settings to be account, cloud-saved settings and we made general audio settings (volume / subtitles) machine bound. This will mean that if you move to another PC your account settings will move with you. It also means the game's volume will now be universally the same as your game settings (so no more super loud volume before login).

      Please Note : The account settings will be pulled from the last character you saved the options for (including playing with a character for the first time). This will also reset everyone's subtitle and audio volume options. You should also be able to change all settings in character select.

Video options

Posted Image
    Added support for Fullscreen Windowed mode.

    Video Options (Multi-Monitor)

      We now re-evaluate the sizes of the movie players after we switch video settings (Resolution / Full-screen) so that multi-monitor support keeps working.

    Mods (Blowtorch)

      You can now activate the blowtorch mod while in a vehicle and you can now target the vehicle you are in when using the blowtorch.

    Weapon Skins

      Agrotech DMR-AV PR1 / PR2 now have an "Alternative" skin option.


      Added a "Custom" video quality setting, for when players manually alter the various video settings.



        Premium cash bonuses have been separated out from the "Bonus" section, so it is now easier to tell what your premium bonus actually is.

      Kill Feed

        If a player is now killed by a vehicle, an vehicle kill icon will be shown in the activity feed (previously a vehicle kill was shown as a skull icon).


        Added a video volume slider. Videos now use a combination of the master volume and video volume, rather than the default volume.
        Drop-down menus have been altered so they now use more of the actual space available to them.
        Now greying out options that are overridden by hardware constraints.
        Pressing OK on the options screen now accepts all changes rather than just the ones of the tab you were using.

      Escape Menu

        Selecting the "Knowledge Base" entry from the Escape menu will now open the Knowledge Base display in the Tutorial UI.

      District Select

        Changed the advanced district selection tab from a graphical icon to the text "Advanced".

      Login Integration

        Added new explanatory text to the 'First Time Setup' dialog seen when associating an account.

Bug Fixes

    Ghost Shots

      We've made changes to improve client and server parity, in order to address the issue commonly referred to as "Ghost Shots" * . It should be noted that it does not completely resolve the issue - but extensive testing has shown that it substantially reduces the likelihood of it occurring.

      * Ghost Shot(s): A visual feedback issue that can occur when a player fires a weapon, is seen to do so on their client, but the server considers it invalid, fractions of a second later. This leads to confusion between what a player has seen and what has been validated and allowed by the server.

    Car Surfer

      Fixed an issue that would case impact damage to be applied continuously to a vehicle in motion, if the user was standing on the vehicle with Car Surfer equipped.

    Audio (Thigh High Boots)

      Thigh High Boots are now using the correct high heel sound effects.

    Taggers (Events)

      Fixed an issue where taggers would not work on players taking part in an event, if those players had previously been in a group together.




          Fixed an exploit with the blowtorch modification that would allow you to use a heavy weapon while hanging out a vehicle.



          Fixed an exploit where using Epinephrine would not cause damage to the player, if they used it during the re-spawn invulnerability.


        Fixed an issue where off-mission items could be counted towards a mission's objective items.

    Weapon Skins

      The Future Tech skin for the PSR Osprey now displays properly.


        The PSR Chrome skin is now hooked up to be unlocked from the correct sniper role.


      Fixed an issue where changing an option in one category would also change an entry in another category.


      Fixed a typo and improved the confusing wording of the tutorial dialog box that appears when you create a new character for the first time.

    Client Crash

      Fixed a rare startup crash, which could happen if the game could not restore / maximise the game window.
      Fixed a client crash that could happen when a player attempted to change their music library.

Vendredi 18 juillet 2014  
Next week

Since we've been very quiet recently, we wanted to make a quick post ahead of the weekend to tease something we will be sharing with everyone next week. 

As you know our teams have been working very hard and very long on several different projects, and at least in one of those cases we are ready to make an announcement next week that we think will make most people very happy...

What we are going to announce is not the biggest project we have going at the moment, but it's a good one, and worthy of some detailed discussion.

See you next week!


(hint: it's free)

Bjorn Book-Larsson

Mardi 15 juillet 2014  
Patch 1.16.1 (569)

We're aiming at releasing a client update on Wednesday. Maintenance should be approximately 2 - 3 hours and will start at 9 AM UTC.

Bug Fix

    Startup Error

      We've fixed a startup issue that could lead to some players receiving an "SDD" error, which would have prevented them from being able to run the game.

    Additional Note

      Patches have been light for the last couple of weeks because we're hard at work on the 1.17.0 update - we'll hopefully have more details on this for you soon but, as a mini-preview, 1.17 will address issues like: car surfer causing vehicle damage; fixes to improve client and server parity when firing a weapon (commonly known as the "ghost shot" issue); and changes to the way we store account settings (this will address the issue where your game volume setting doesn't affect the login screen).

Mardi 8 juillet 2014  
Patch 1.16.1 (566)

We're aiming at releasing a client update on Wednesday. Maintenance should be approximately 2 - 3 hours and will start at 9 AM UTC.

New Weapon

The PSR (Precision Sharpshooter Rifle). Functionally identical to the N-HVR 762, Agrotech have combined the same accuracy and power you have come to expect from a high powered rifle with a composite body and sleek looks. Look to expect this on Armas soon.




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