CHEATS vs EXPLOITS
If some game mechanic is broken or unbalanced in the game and you take advantage of it, that’s an exploit. It’s an exploit if you find somewhere to sell equipment for more than you bought it for. It’s an exploit if you farm boss levels for keys from the infinitely spawning chickens. And it’s an exploit if you use an auto-clicker to reach much higher manual firing rates than any human could.
In exploits you’re still playing within the rules defined by the game, and it’s up to the game to fix them. We’re fine with this – you’re doing nothing “wrong”. The game should change prices, or should prevent chickens from dropping too much food, or should lower the maximum allowed firing rate of a weapon.
Now, if you use Cheat Engine (or whatever) to remove/increase the firing rate… well, now you’re cheating. You’re cheating if you hack the game so that items cost less. You’re cheating if you reduce enemy health. And you’re cheating if you gain an unfair advantage against other players.
With exploits, everyone is still playing by the same rules. With cheating, you’re making up your own rules.
We’re amending our previous policy, which was too inflexible and perhaps a bit poorly explained:
During Early Access, you are not going to be banned if you cheat. In fact, during this stage we welcome people fiddling around with the game. If you’re the first person to report a working cheat to us and, as a result, that particular cheat gets patched/disabled in a future update, then you’ll get up to 1000 free keys (depending on the severity) and a custom medal .
This rule applies only during Early Access. We’ll issue an update after the game is officially released.