Audio Calibration Muting Ruining Rivals Competition

1
I currently am disliking rivals because Harmonix has yet to do anything about the Audio Calibration Muting Trick that is giving Guitar and Bass Players anywhere from 1k up to 10k more pts on a song when they lower their Audio Calibration to 0ms and mute the TV.

Whe it comes to competition on Spotlight Scores especially in Boodstone, crews are using this cheat to top the leaderboard causing those who dont cheat to get demoted.

The fact that Harmonix would punish a crew for using the vocal mic fan trick or automating gameplay to increase XP but do nothing to crews who are using this cheat is completely unfair and destroys any aspect of competition that rivals brings to the table.

Comments

  • lolwhut
  • Is there confirmation? Or is this simply you cant beat their scores and assume they are doing something wrong....

  • ChezButterChezButter Unsigned
    Vocal mic fan trick - I'm not sure too many of the songs are "talkies," and there is diminishing returns on that even if it were used. I can't speak to the other issue but I know what you're talking about (somewhat) as I'm a percussionist.

    Do you know the difference between a drummer and a percussionist?

    A drummer can't spell 'percussionist.'

    I'll show myself out.
  • djdatatecdjdatatec Unsigned
    i can confirm that using the same path with Audio set at 60 gave about 5k higher (under guest account) on flagpole sitta guitar vs Audio set at 185.
  • I don't know anything about this stuff but if you persist there will be no doubt be an avalanche of posts from folks actually using this "technique" defending this exploit. It's very tough these days to get a fair fight.
  • is there a link for an example? cuz i don't know what the hell y'all are talking about.
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    edited March 18

    is there a link for an example? cuz i don't know what the hell y'all are talking about.

    There are no (easily found) videos or links because HMX has labeled Cal Pathing a cheat...

    Basically, the lower your audio calibration is, the more points, (ticks), you can get from sustains on Guitar/Bass, which is typically minimal unless a song has a lot of Over Drive sustains. (Basically you get more overdrive from sustains, the lower your audio calibration is.)
    It also works for drums allowing people to squeeze longer Overdrive sections together.

    The issue is people taking this to extremes, setting their audio to -300 & muting their audio while playing by sight.
    No it's not easy, and you still have to be pretty damn good to do it, but there are people who can. In fact, basically every crew in BloodStone & Diamond had a Cal Pather until HMX classified it as a cheat, then there was a "truce" of sorts with a bunch of crews agreeing to stop Cal Pathing... That lasted a few months...

    The issue now, is that some of those original Cal Pathers who continued to use it, even after getting their crews demoted are back in the upper tiers, they just joined different crews & are more sneaky about it.
    They get their base score "legit", when somebody passes their score, they simply lower their audio cal in small increments until the beat it...

    The real sad thing is that these players basically openly admit they are Cal Pathing & will continue to do so until it is patched & HMX has not taken any action against them in the many weeks of them doing this recently...
    people have no excuse at this point. if they really cared about staying safe/getting promoted, then they should use cal lag too.
    Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/Rockband/comments/5zrw63/audio_calibration_muting_ruins_rivals_competition/

    Cal Pathing has been around a long time, since before RB4, if I'm not mistaken, but is an issue with the core game engine & is not something that can be easily fixed....

    Sure this is something that affects a small minority of "legit" rivals crews, those in the top rivals tiers, but it also affects the leader boards too...I think a good guesstimate would be that around 80% of the songs have top scores from Cal Pathers...
    But again, this only affects another minority of "legit" score chasers...

    It is something HMX is aware of, & something that they have stated they have been working on, BUT in the meantime, they need to start policing again & not let these players & crews get away with it...
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    Just wanted to add, this issue affects Everyone, whether the realize it or not.

    Player A has a natural audio calibration of 160
    Player B has a natural audio calibration of 140

    If both players play the same song, activate overdrive on the same notes, and there are sustains in the song...

    Player B's score will always be higher...
  • VladTepz said:

    Just wanted to add, this issue affects Everyone, whether the realize it or not.

    Player A has a natural audio calibration of 160
    Player B has a natural audio calibration of 140

    If both players play the same song, activate overdrive on the same notes, and there are sustains in the song...

    Player B's score will always be higher...

    And this is the exact reason ppl do cal pathing in the first place - not to geat ahead of others by doing weird stuff, but to minimize difference to others - imo cal0 is the default audio cal - every new player who has not calibrated starts there. And I havent heard of any1 with actual lower cal.

    i myself have 160-185 on tv, but using a soundsystem i had audio 0 till last hotfix (before march patch), then nothing worked anymore... tried anything from -20 to 220. I just cant seem to get the audio cal right anymore since then....

    if every1would just agree to a set audio cal number which is lower than any calibrated audio lag out there it would at least minimize the problem.

    still ppl suck at pathing and dont realize that calpathing doesnt do much in most songs , they will always call out others as cheaters bc they cant reach optimal pathed scores - and there starts the envy or whatever it is
    "They cant have a score that high" "they are cal pathing/cheating" and then it starts - THESE ppl start cal pathing songs to get the highest scores - bc they think they obv deserve it or w/e


    Any way long story short. HMX has to fix it! Or just clarify whats allowed and what isnt.
    Since they seem to be unable to do the first they should at least to the second option. And not just point out the rules - but also have a look at crews and cheating.

    bc up till now IMO it wouldnt even be cheated to play at cal -300. There is no rule or whatsoever - its an exploit.
    Cheating starts when u refuse to play by the rules. But since there are no rules everything seems to be allowed. They havent demoted any crew to this day for cal lagging...

    this btw does not mean i go below cal0 (i dont). But i wouldnt point at others calling them cheaters for doing so. Even if it means we (as a crew) might get demoted etc.
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    Honestly the term "cheater" should be used loosely, and only used because HMX has stated that it's a "cheat", and demoted crews,( in the past), that have had players artificially lower their audio calibration with the sole purpose of padding their scores.

    I totally understand why players are doing this, the game is broken & honestly the only way to be on a level playing field is to in fact use Cal Pathing.

    The biggest issue is that they (HMX) have stated it is considered "cheating" by them & have warned about the risk of penalties, but since there is no fix & they aren't actively policing it anymore, ( so it seems), players that are playing by HMX rules are being penalized, & those risking it & actually playing in the current, most level playing field by cal pathing, are getting rewarded...

    They are making it more unfair by threatening people not to play using the current, most fair ( unfortunately), way of playing...
  • VladTepz said:

    Honestly the term "cheater" should be used loosely, and only used because HMX has stated that it's a "cheat", and demoted crews,( in the past), that have had players artificially lower their audio


    Which crew got demoted for cal lagging? Did not happen on PS4 tho.

    And if they dont allow playing on the same level others do (for whoever has the lowest actual cal lag on their tv/monitor/sound system) they would automatically make the game unfair for every1 with higher cal lag than that.

    so imo they should finally set a lowest point ppl may be allowed to play on.

    They have access to all the data.

    if a player does auto calibration and has a lower audio lag - just lower the cal lag which is allowed to play on

    easy at it is
  • DrvOvrItDrvOvrIt Unsigned
    Interesting read, I would think that the lag is proportional to the length of the song. It just off sets your inputs to the start and stop of the song, working out to the same amount of time. I'm not good enough for this to all matter but interesting. My lag is where it is to accommodate my stereo system. I don't have a choice ottherwise fun factor would go down.
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    edited March 20
    Two members, from two different Bloodstone crew, both crews being notified weeks ago about these players Cal Pathing & didn't care, both openly admiting to Cal Pathing spotlight song in public on Reddit...

    One of them already has had their crew demoted before being kicked from the crew. The previous crew warned him not to Cal Path, but he did anyways...
    people have no excuse at this point. if they really cared about staying safe/getting promoted, then they should use cal lag too.
    and
    Lol what? Coming from the crew that has *EDITED* who also uses cal pathing. And how do I know he does? Because sometimes he'll have my scores beat and the only way he could've done so is if he did the same thing. Don't get me wrong though, he's a really good player regardless of course. One of the better guitarists for sure, so you don't see me complaining about him beating my scores every now and then. Let's just all be friends mmkayyyy? <3</b>
    I recently joined the crew and told them about it when I first joined actually. I wouldn't have have them get demoted and lie to them from the start. If we got demoted, we'd just come back from bronze all the way to bloodstone the "legit" way. They know what I do. Plus, you guys are in first anyways atm in spotlight and xp so I really don't see what the big deal is.
    Lets see if @HMXOwl does anything this week or if it's business as usual & just ignore players & crews who openly use exploits...
  • HMX needs to decide if Rivals is important to them? If so, act like it and police the people abusing the game.
  • RJUCPURJUCPU Unsigned
    edited March 21
    It's not that easy. There are lots of legitimate, killer good scores mixed in. Especially with new songs, there's no history to go by, it's all new paths and squeezing. Also, because it's not always full out cal-pathing anymore it's sometimes more difficult to see. Sure, there are some songs that are glaringly obvious, but not all. Policing at this point is going to be extremely difficult to do. However, when someone boldly and openly admits on a forum that yes, they are in fact exploiting, then those particular scores should be looked at closer and dealt with if necessary. Until a fix comes, not holding our breath on anything being done. Just waiting it out.
  • LoAlexandriaLoAlexandria Unsigned
    edited March 21
    RJUCPU said:

    It's not that easy. There are lots of legitimate, killer good scores mixed in. Especially with new songs, there's no history to go by, it's all new paths and squeezing. Also, because it's not always full out cal-pathing anymore it's sometimes more difficult to see. Sure, there are some songs that are glaringly obvious, but not all. Policing at this point is going to be extremely difficult to do. However, when someone boldly and openly admits on a forum that yes, they are in fact exploiting, then those particular scores should be looked at closer and dealt with if necessary. Until a fix comes, not holding our breath on anything being done. Just waiting it out.

    so ppl who say they cal path should be punished, and others who (at least some of em) point out to others using exploits and do the same thing, but dont tell any1 shouldnt? Just because the first group is known as exploiters and the second might or might not be? lol

    HMX needs to decide if Rivals is important to them? If so, act like it and police the people abusing the game.

    So u think it would be fair that ppl have to stick around their (auto)-calibrated setting? so player A does cal60 legit and others have to stick with cal180?

    If they care they should _not_ just ban/demote/punish crews in anyway until they set up some rules to the game. If a gameplay is broken as it is - set FAIR rules to everyone, only if that happens ppl can follow the rules.


    Until then we will have our scores set at cal0 - and seriously if u first start the game - cal settings are 0/0 - so we play on default cal this way, we won't go below that.
    So If any1 has a weaker score than any score we posted and u are at cal0 or even lower its most likely we just used a petter path or have squeezed in a note or two, but it doesnt mean we went lower than 0 as well....


    Anyway - a fix for that issue would be much more appreciated than anything else.... bc I'm sick of ppl calling us cheaters and worse...
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    it's a crap shoot for sure & almost undoubtedly the biggest bug in the game that hardly anyone knows about...

    I personally, can't speak for other crews or even my crew members, would be down for making a bloodstone agreement that no one could Cal-Path with negative values. (default 0 audio) The original Bloodstone crews had a similar agreement to stop Cal-Pathing & it worked for many, many weeks, until the first of those two mentioned above got to Bloodstone & ignored the "truce". Now there are, (at least,) two of them.

    I'm talking about blatantly exploiting, we have guys spending hours/days pathing, squeezing, double squeezing, just to keep up, and funny enough sometimes pass, these Cal-Pathing crews, but it's usually only temporary, (5-10 minutes.) long enough for them to lower their audio calibration a bit to get the few extra points they need. Rinse & Repeat..

    HMX employees strait up warned us not to Cal-Path, demoted crews that did after the warning & was the reason for the "truce" in the first place. This is also one of the reason why having a default 0 audio minimum truce wouldn't work. I wouldn't risk getting my whole crew demoted just to get a few extra points so I can "look cool".

    Time passed, new crews were promoted to Bloodstone without knowing about the "truce" & instead of HMX being consistent, they all but abandoned policing Rivals, their "brand new", $30 expansion...

    Sure we could sink down to that level, have our spotlight guys lower their audio cal & blow these guys out of the water, but honestly, it's even sweeter doing it "legit" ;) Unfortunately not every crew can, and it's terrible they have to pay the price.

    Not trying to brag, just give a little background info...

    I am fortunate enough to be in a awesome crew, one of the original 5 Bloodstone crews, statistically the #1 Xbone crew of all time( most rival points ), the only Xbone crew to have never been demoted from Bloostone.

    Cal-Pathers don't even really affect us, we are still consistently getting #1 overall Bloostone badges and that's without Cal-Pathing, switching members, or doing anything shady that other crews do, because our fantastic spotlight guys put in the work creating, tweaking, & executing "legit" paths. (you should see our spotlight-pathing chat, it would blow your minds)

    We are one of the most vocal crews about it because we strive to be fair, these Cal-Pathing crews aren't affecting us, they are affecting other great crews, that play fair, only to get demoted because they are playing fair..

    Heck, I know the natural audio calibration of everyone on our crew. lol Because instead of taking the easy way, we help each other out, we give setup advice to naturally lower audio calibration. (Wiring setups, headphone setups, display setups, etc...)

    * @HMX needs to fix Cal-Pathing, State that it is allowed, or Restart policing and demoting based on their original warning instead of ignoring Rivals players....*
  • VladTepz said:

    we give setup advice to naturally lower audio calibration. (Wiring setups, headphone setups, display setups, etc...)

    So its fair to lower ur audio cal from lets say 150 to 100 to 70 because u just use other/different equipment? So U'ld be always ahead of ppl using their legit 150 without the additional equip to lower their cal. (obv in case of same path and stuff).
    which would be almost the same as the turbo controller thing - additional equip not everyone has granting something u chase for by just using it. i know kinda weird comperison here, but i think u get my point

    to be fair - i used my sound system to have a natural cal of 0-10 (before first patch/hotfix this year), now i cant get cal straight anymore and my TV cal is up at 215(!) - tell me how would i compete with anyone at natural 50-150?

    So for scoring i just use cal0, i dont make a secret of it, pretty much every bloodstone crew on PS4 knows.

    when there was an agreement set up for bloodstonecrews on ps4 i did not agree unless there is a set number we wont go down, bc every crew had different cal, and you couldnt tell if a score is played at better cal, or just petter path, or better squeeze. So i agree with cal0 as lowest (or if they come up with any other higher number, I'ld go up, idc. but have ppl play at the same minimum cal - or even better - fix that damn exploit....





  • twistedoaktwistedoak Unsigned
    The only way to deal with cal lag at this point is for Harmonix to patch it.

    I'm not a coder, so even though it sounds easy to me to fix, I honestly have no idea how much work it would take to change the overdrive code.

    Seems like a simple fix though, don't tie overdrive accumulation to audio, but rather to the length of the sustain. It would be a constant no matter the audio settings. A 1 second sustain would receive the same amount of overdrive whether you have 0 audio or 180 audio.

    If this ever gets fixed, I am sure you would see some movement at the top tiers of the rival competitions. I'm not holding my breath though. Harmonix has made it perfectly clear this generation that they are not catering to the hardcore minority (like those reading these message boards). I would imagine that this issue which seems so important to us is low on the list of things to attend to because the majority of people playing rock band will never know or understand what this issue is all about.
  • And I MIGHT have found a glitch on Vocals (shame, bc i was so thankful my main instrument had nothing to deal with) - but it seems there is something as well. I wasnt able to reproduce the glitch all the time, actually far from consistent, But I think its there and i am pretty sure this could be a problem to more than just this week's Hurry Up.

    But any1 here know where to submit stuff like that so HMX can look into it?
  • But any1 here know where to submit stuff like that so HMX can look into it?

    talktous@harmonixmusic.com
  • edited March 22
    The community keeps going back and forth on what's an exploit / what's cheating. None of us have an answer. I do believe once HMX fixes the exploits / bugs we might be looking at another leader board wipe. I know many players don't want that, but I can see it coming if players don't stop. Demotions? I don't see them coming. HMX needs to fix the bugs / exploits and level the playing field.
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    No demotions as of right now, they've demoted in the past for this same thing, not sure why they are currently ignoring the issue... They have the tools & means now to punish these crews, yet they choose to let them keep getting fair play crews demoted instead...
  • VladTepz said:

    No demotions as of right now, they've demoted in the past for this same thing, not sure why they are currently ignoring the issue... They have the tools & means now to punish these crews, yet they choose to let them keep getting fair play crews demoted instead...

    I understand. However we can't tell HMX how to their job. Do some crews need to be demoted? Maybe.., but players will say HMX fix your game and we won't do this or that. I'm tired of crews telling other crews how to play the game. They bully other crews in their tier not to do this or that, but yet their doing it themselves. We just have to be patient and hope a patch comes out sooner than later.
  • Spending time and resources on a fix that would quite literally only effect maybe 100 people tops is the issue. Rivals as a competition is dying. It has become the groups we are associated with and not much more. My current group has stayed platinum with very little effort and we have minimal desire to go back into bloodstone. IF their is an upgrade and change to the system, then maybe the cal pathing will be looked at. I have a hunch that if it was an easy fix, it would have happened months ago. It sounds like something far more complicated and involved than any of us would know.
  • On a side note, most of the blatant cal pathers basically want to be demoted. Rising up through the ranks again is actually quite fun and would not be a detriment if they actually demoted them.
  • VladTepzVladTepz Unsigned
    still nothing from HMX....
  • VladTepz said:

    ...we have guys spending hours/days pathing, squeezing, double squeezing, just to keep up, and funny enough sometimes pass, these Cal-Pathing crews, but it's usually only temporary, (5-10 minutes.) long enough for them to lower their audio calibration a bit to get the few extra points they need. Rinse & Repeat..

    Well, call me under a rock for a bit, but I was always wondering what was going on. I would fight like hell to get a score above and work hard to achieve it only to see for the length of the next song it would be beaten by a few hundred or thousand. At least I have my answer. Makes me frustrated I wasted all that time legitimately playing just for it to be undone by an exploit. Oh well. It made me a better drummer in the long run of things. (glass half full...check!)

    Our crew just got to Bloodstone. Judging from our conversations I don't think anyone in our crew cheated/exploited the game. I path the hell out of vocals, but that seems 100% legit to me. But now I realize, a top spotlight score might be near impossible for my crew to achieve due to all of this. What a bummer.

    Welp, at least HMX is fixing it, judging by their latest post and eventual next update.
  • RJUCPURJUCPU Unsigned

    Our crew just got to Bloodstone. Judging from our conversations I don't think anyone in our crew cheated/exploited the game. I path the hell out of vocals, but that seems 100% legit to me. But now I realize, a top spotlight score might be near impossible for my crew to achieve due to all of this. What a bummer.

    Not sure what console you are on but there's only one crew that's exploiting G/B on the XB so top spots in bloodstone spotlight are still possible with hard work (lots of skill up there). Drums hasn't been an issue for awhile, it's all G/B. Top spotlight vocals is legit, that's usually me (16X) and I don't play games with exploits. Plus, vox is very subjective and unless it's the case of an optimal break, all scores I've seen are reachable so I just take them at face value since the difference tends to be minimal.

  • RJUCPU said:

    Not sure what console you are on but there's only one crew that's exploiting G/B on the XB so top spots in bloodstone spotlight are still possible with hard work (lots of skill up there). Drums hasn't been an issue for awhile, it's all G/B. Top spotlight vocals is legit, that's usually me (16X) and I don't play games with exploits. Plus, vox is very subjective and unless it's the case of an optimal break, all scores I've seen are reachable so I just take them at face value since the difference tends to be minimal.

    Got some bad news for you than as you're playing a game with exploits on vocals and drums. This from HMX last blog post:

    +++++
    With these changes it’s pretty important that we keep a level playing field, so let’s talk exploits. The next update is going to be addressing the following exploits that previously allowed people to achieve higher-than-should-be-possible scores:

    Calibration settings affecting sustains
    Calibration settings affecting drum fill timing
    Pause rollback extending vocal overdrive
    +++++

    And I have absolutely seen vocal scores that are unattainable without exploit (I play on PS4). Sometimes it's a few hundred points, but it's still a few hundred I won't cheat to get.
1
Sign In or Register to comment.