This question is not the first of its kind. I've seen plenty and so have you. In these kinds of questions the asker is clearly going to violate the ToS\ToU agreement the game throws in your face when you install it. Is this act illegal? If it is, why do we encourage\support\answer these questions?

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    Legalities tend to be on a per-region basis. We don't support piracy, but for the most part, we should be assuming good faith use of whatever it is we're helping them with. Besides, since when is it our job to enforce the publisher's ToS?
    – Frank
    Feb 5, 2013 at 21:02
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    See this -- "circumventing copyright protection is often criminal whereas breaking a licence agreement may be wrongful under civil law but not criminal." And we do refuse to help even in the most minor of cases as far as I understand -- meta.gaming.stackexchange.com/q/4621/6066 Feb 5, 2013 at 21:13

1 Answer 1


We've had discussions like this in the past, here for example.

The problem tends to be that when it comes to things that are illegal, it's really kind of a weird gray area on which we are not experts and we're generally told to assume good faith whenever possible. Plus, what "legal" is isn't something that's agreed upon worldwide.

For instance, some people/companies/governments would argue that emulators are illegal, or that abandonware is illegal, or modding your console is illegal, or flash carts are illegal, burning "backup copies" of games is illegal, etc. The community is likely to be strongly divided whenever these things come up.

EULAs, ToSes, and ToUes are so complex and dense that interpreting a question and determining what is and isn't covered by them can be impossible until they're tested in some clear way.

Even easy rules in this space, like:

Cheating, hacking, glitching, or otherwise gaining an unfair advantage in a multiplayer game

can be problematic.

Can we accurately sort "fair" from "unfair?" If a glitch is widely known and used often, does that make it fair? (ie, think about fighting game glitches where everybody "knows" how to break the game a certain way as a certain character or with a certain move) How widely known is wide enough?

What constitutes "multiplayer?" Do games you only play with friends count as multiplayer? Wouldn't item duping in Borderlands 2 fall afoul of this? Do games with only leaderboards count as multiplayer? If so, then wouldn't modding or savescumming in XCom: Enemy Unknown be considered cheating in a multiplayer game, regardless of your intent?

I don't know that I have a clear answer to the underlying problem here. I know that we want to avoid being a "get the hax" site, but that also sometimes what we're told is 'illegal' or against a complex agreement isn't always so, or isn't a good frame of reference.

In the past, the way I've approached these things is to ask "is there a reason why this question could/would be asked that appears valid? Can I assume good faith?" - if so, then I generally consider it safe. Then, I would answer with the caveat that "hey, I'm no expert, but I think it's possible that you could get into trouble with this if you used it in the wrong way."

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    For the question linked, I think good faith can certainly be assumed; the max resolutions of 800x600 (for D2, anyway) are incredibly outdated at this point. This is a problem I ran into myself.
    – Frank
    Feb 5, 2013 at 21:29

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