We have all stumbled across seemingly impossible odds while playing a game. That is usually a very big problem if you're playing a board game. Unless it happens to be Munchkin or Cosmic Encounter then you will have no choice but to put your honor on the line if you intend to... influence aspects that benefit you. In the video game world however, no one gets angry (unless playing multiplayer). Trainers and cheat codes are as old as the Earth itself. The only problem is they're not out for every game, and may not exist for the aspect you want altered. Let's say you want to see through walls, but there's no cheat to do that. Are you going to beg the internet for one, or are you going to take matters into your own hand?
Put your hacker gloves on!
Cheat Engine lets you do just that. It scours game code to find and latch on to valuable variables such as gold, mana, life points, weapon damage or all of them! It's not as easy as pressing a button though. You will need to familiarize yourself a bit with hexadecimals and the sorts, or simply follow the included tutorial. The basics look like this: You start the game you want and observe a stat that you want to alter, let's say it's "hit points". You then input that value into Cheat Engine and then scan the code for it. If you find multiples you simply scan again after your life point value has changed. That will narrow results based on that change. Once you pinpoint it, you simply add it to the cheat list. From there on all you need is to modify the value manually and your life-points will follow through.
The cheat list (called Address List) allows you to re-name addresses so that you can easily spot the ones you're looking for. Don't forget to save it afterwards. Cheat Engine creates a table file that you can load every time you want those cheats active.
So much for the juicy part. In reality though, you will not be able to implement any cheat you'd wish. Cheat Engine is no longer compatible with newer games. Furthermore old games need to behave when their window is being switched or at least support a windowed mode. But if you manage to pass these hurdles then the world of game hacking will just become a little more accessible.
- Memory Scanner
- Interactive Tutorial
- Lots of other technical stuff
- The tutorial is a godsend
- Not that complicated to use
- Doesn't work on every single player game
- Sometimes it takes a while to fish for the right address
Cheat Engine is a very useful tool not only when cheating. You can create a bigger challenge if you so wish or simply use it to debug your own game. In any case, if you have any relation to PC games at all, you should at least try and see what stats you can fiddle with.