中央研究院  |  資訊科學研究所  |  多媒體網路與系統實驗室
Identifying MMORPG Bots: A Traffic Analysis Approach
(NOTE: Sheng-Wei Chen is also known as Kuan-Ta Chen.)

Abstract
Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPGs) have become extremely popular among network gamers. Despite their success, one of MMORPG's greatest challenges is the increasing use of game bots, i.e., auto-playing game clients. The use of game bots is considered unsportsmanlike and is therefore forbidden. To keep games in order, game police, played by actual human players, often patrol game zones and question suspicious players. This practice, however, is laborintensive and ineffective. To address this problem, <b>we analyze the traffic generated by human players vs. game bots and propose general solutions to identify game bots automatically</b>.<p> Taking <a href="http://iro.ragnarokonline.com/">Ragnarok Online</a>, one of the most popular MMORPGs, as our subject, we study the traffic generated by human players and game bots. We find that their traffic is distinguishable by: 1) the regularity in the release time of client commands; 2) the trend and magnitude of traffic burstiness in multiple time scales; and 3) the sensitivity to different network conditions. Based on these findings, we propose four strategies and two ensemble schemes to identify bots. For our data sets, the conservative scheme completely avoids making false accusations against bona fide players, while the progressive scheme tracks game bots down more aggressively. Finally, we discuss the robustness of the proposed methods against counter-measures of bot developers, and consider a number of possible ways to manage the increasingly serious bot problem.<p> <font color="red"><i>Data trace:</i></font><br> - <a href="http://mmnet.iis.sinica.edu.tw/content.html?key=ro">Ragnarok Online Traffic Traces for Game Bot Identification</a>

Materials
Citation
Kuan-Ta Chen, Jhih-Wei Jiang, Polly Huang, Hao-Hua Chu, Chin-Laung Lei and Wen-Chin Chen, "Identifying MMORPG Bots: A Traffic Analysis Approach," EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing, Vol. 2009, Article ID 797159, 2009.

BibTex
@ARTICLE{chen09:bot_traffic,
  TITLE      = {Identifying {MMORPG} Bots: A Traffic Analysis Approach},
  AUTHOR     = {Kuan-Ta Chen and Jhih-Wei Jiang and Polly Huang and Hao-Hua Chu and Chin-Laung Lei and Wen-Chin Chen},
  YEAR       = {2009},
  JOURNAL    = {EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing},
  VOL        = {2009}
}