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"Badass" Bug Infects and Kills Borderlands 2 Characters 189

An anonymous reader writes "BBC News claims that a feature in Borderlands 2 that can only be activated in modded XBox 360s has a bug that can cause characters to be permanently deleted when they die- even if they weren't the ones who activated the feature. 'The hidden option within the game, known as "badass" or "hardcore", is turned off by default but can be enabled by those that have modified or hacked their console. [..] When a player with an unmodded console joins a Borderlands 2 multiplayer game in which there is a character running in badass mode it too gets kicked into that mode. [..] Gamers who play alongside people who have modded their console "contract" the bug which deletes their character if they die during play.'"
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"Badass" Bug Infects and Kills Borderlands 2 Characters

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @12:19AM (#41827081)

    Or as most people call them, bugs.

    A âoefeatureâ that is not really a feature turns out to be âoebuggyâ! WOW!
    News at 11, 10 Easternâ¦

    That depends on how deeply you look at this "problem", and from what side, now doesn't it?

    From a gamers perspective, it is a bug, or could even be defined as a virus.

    However, from Microsoft's perspective, sounds like it's "attacking" (or at least pointing the finger) at the very group they likely want to eradicate; those who mod their consoles.

    So, the question is...was this feature really all that undocumented? Hmmm...

  • by Linsaran ( 728833 ) on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @01:06AM (#41827269) Homepage
    My gut feeling is that the 'badass' code is probably either legacy settings they intended to include but decided not to for whatever reason, or it is a feature that they were going to unlock at some point in the future. I doubt that they included that setting specifically for moders, it's likely that moders just happened to be the ones who discovered it.
  • by pclminion ( 145572 ) on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @01:36AM (#41827363)
    I can think of a couple of possibilities. One, is mistaken exchange of AND/OR in an expression. I've done that one, it's hilarious and depending on the likelihood of various components of the expression, hard to find in testing (though code review might catch it -- people, have other people look at your code!) Two, some mixup in the way that a property is queried or set, so that the property is accidentally merged into the different player objects. For instance you meant to write SetForPlayerObject() but instead you wrote SetForCurrentPlayerSet() which might do something subtly different, but again, hard to find in test, especially if the bug only involves some obscure feature that's intended to be disabled (lesson #2, do not disable code, yank that shit out of there)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @02:47AM (#41827593)

    Yes, it's a feature game designers always take out when people start to whine. Stupid majority. Most games would actually be more like games if they would allow permadeath. Or at least severe penalty for dying. Borderlands just started to sound interesting.

  • by LordLimecat ( 1103839 ) on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @10:44AM (#41830235)

    Which of those steps was the "seriously stupid shit"?

    The part where the game still checks to see if a supposedly disabled setting is on or off, and still has active functions to enforce permadeath?

    Im no programmer-- but this isnt difficult. Somewhere there are a series of functions that get called @ death. One of those does the permadeath stuff. That should have been either ripped out, commented out, or neutered prior to release, if they really did not want that mode ingame.

Thus spake the master programmer: "When a program is being tested, it is too late to make design changes." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"