Discussion Let's discuss cheats!

Discussion in 'Novel General' started by GabeZhul, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. GabeZhul

    GabeZhul Well-Known Member

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    Cheats. Love them, hate them, they are pretty much a staple of most WNs and LNs. But what is a cheat? Let's discuss!

    First off, in my humble opinion, the most important thing is that a cheat has to be outside of the setting's context. For example, Satou from Death March is incredibly OP because of his ridiculous level. However, that level itself is not a cheat, as it is something that is achievable for others (if near impossible). What is a cheat in his case is his ability to instantly learn skills and then level them out using skill points instead of practice like everyone else, something no one else in the setting has access to. Similarly, possessing an OP artifact or technique in a cultivation novel doesn't automatically make it a cheat, as those are still within the scope of the setting, but having a personal achievement store where the MC can purchase them with impunity is.

    So, let's do some categorizing (ps: I am not giving direct examples, but if you can guess which series I am referencing, you get 100 internet points :3):

    -Growth Cheats: These seem to be really common in both japanese and korean iseakais. The idea is that, due to some weird quirk (receiving multiple blessings from lazy goddesses, having a party member with a unique skill, powering up infinitely from doing pre-archery meditation, etc.) the main character is capable of powering up at a rate incomparable to the other inhabitants of the world. They may also have some other cheats on top of that (being able to switch around classes and skills, skill-stealing, etc), or it might just be that they overpower their opposition by out-leveling everyone so fast the bad guy's can't keep track and thus they are always under-estimated. Bonus points for being able to bestow the same leveling-speed to allies as well.

    -Future Knowledge: This can come in many forms, but mostly it's a staple of the second-chance reincarnation genre, though it is also common in the "transported into a fictional world as a character" genre as well. The idea is that the MC, one way or another, possesses knowledge of future events in the setting, allowing them to do things like snatch powerful artifacts ahead of time, thwart villainous plans, befriend and recruit future super-experts, or do all of the above while becoming kings or whatever. Alternatively, they might just try to avoid "death flags" and "bad ends".

    -Skill Acquisition: This seems to be most common in japanese isekai, and especially monster reincarnation Lit-RPGs (for obvious reasons). The most straightforward way is simply being able to pick up skills just by seeing them or trying them out once, without any of the necessary training. Then we have the more direct version, skill-stealing, where the MC usually consumes enemies, monster parts, or both in order to learn their skills. For added bonus, the MC usually has an automated ability that merges together low-level skills to form superior ones.

    -The System: This one seems to be very common in chinese isekai, where the MC is thrown into a (most likely cultivation-based) fantasy world, and they get an interface with a whole slew of options, such as quests, and achievement store, item-gacha, a minimap, and all sorts of other stuff. The goodies they can gain this way can range from techniques and artifacts already present in the world to the system being near-omnipotent and fixing everything for them, from their cultivation techniques to their love lives.

    -Out-of-context powers: Finally, this is the kind of cheat that may or may not be considered one depending on just how "out-of-context" it is, such as the MC suddenly being able to summon Magic the Gathering monsters and spells using cards inside an MMO-style litRPG, or the MC having the unique ability to power up items with +1 modifiers in cultivation world, or the MC not receiving a reincarnation cheat giving them so much mana it allows them to do way more impossible shit in their new setting than any cheat would. Whether or not these are cheats or "just" OP abilities usually depends on how far they are removed from the setting and whether or not they are considered rare but possible, unique but comparable to other abilities, or flat out impossible for anyone else by the rules of the setting.

    So, did I miss anything? If you think there are other kinds of cheats that slipped my mind, do mention them, along with which type of cheat you consider to be fun, tolerable, or a giant, pulsing zit on the face of literature.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
  2. juniorjawz

    juniorjawz Well-Known Member

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    Walluigi!
     
  3. OneNameVillain

    OneNameVillain [One Who Faced And Became What Should Not Be]

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    Vandalieu's very existence is a cheat. Sure, 100 million mana is cool but what about several billion and the ability to eat gods and shoot giant lasers that break the laws of physics?
     
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  4. Nyamsus

    Nyamsus Life is full of shit and we live in it

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    Appraisal Skill

    You should notice that MC capable determining exact power level of his/her opponent is a cheat itself. Much worse when he/she alone able to do that, while others required specific tool for that
     
  5. OneNameVillain

    OneNameVillain [One Who Faced And Became What Should Not Be]

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    What about being reincarnated as a demon king?
     
  6. ReadOrDie

    ReadOrDie already dead

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    Rapey rapey cheat: you rape someone and she completely fell head over heel for you, lose her personality and becomes part of your doll collection. - most cn mc ever.

    Dense as a rock cheat: She could seduce you, wake up next to you without an inch of clothing or outright jump on you, but nothing, nothing could rock your pillar of denseness. - most jp mc ever.
     
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  7. Khatulistiwa

    Khatulistiwa An Egg Eternal

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    What about pure talent ? Is it a cheat ?
    Like Dong Bo Xue Ying, no old grandpa, no treasure, no system, just talent, hard work, and determination ( I stopped reading it after it went to Qidian though, so i dunno if he will get a cheat in the future )
     
  8. lucjanssens

    lucjanssens a very ¨rabbit¨ bunny

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    isn't it kind of sad that they have to rely on what basically is a computer for their love live?
     
  9. Tilgarial

    Tilgarial [Chaos Tiger] [Paradox] [Life]

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    Over the time of my reading expierience, ive come to dislike any type of over the top advantage. I mean, if you are the only one with something, isnt it kinda natural to rise? Where is the fun in that? Especially systems.they dont even have to make sense and tend to give handouts.
    Naturally, there are still stories that are good despite having such over the top advantages, but that mostly depends on the authors writing ability and other plot stuff just compensates for it.
    However, there is allways a combination of plot devices/settings/ways-of-describing-stuff with cheats that just make it worse.
    Especially systems.
    Growth cheats: the nature of growth cheats would dictate that they rise easier, but that should also kinda mean that they are less expierienced in the matters.
    Example litRPG, if you need less XP to level, that should kinda mean that you have less combat expierience than those on the same level as you. Describing the MC as in any way better at combat through pure combat should be a no-go, unless there is some speciffic training done in that direction.
    The future knowledge: at a specific point, it should not be very useful anymore, simply by your own existence. The only thing it would still affect at that point, is things you diddnt directly- and indirectly- affect, things that happened/were created before you "remembered". Butterfly effect. The specific point is, of course, up to debate and probably different for every setting, but it should deffinitely be there.
    And systems. You may have noticed, but I kinda severely dislike 'em. They're mostly too random. "Yeah, lets start out with giving the host one of the highest cultivation manuals, just because!" Or gacha. Or both. Basically, its just a pretext to make the MC superior without any sort of work on the MC's side. The only acceptable way(for me) i can imagine a system(an individual specific system, the moment its common it isnt a cheat, and other things apply, as i might finally mention) is if it simply lets the host/MC enhance what he gets his hands on, or he has to put in some type of work that is in some way equivalent to what he would get.
    The skill aquisition one is a bit tricky. The most prevalent problem would most likely be that the MC grows strong too quickly, as he just gets stuff left and right.
    The easiest way to balance this, is either a low chance of aquisition, or a slower growth with aquired skills or something in that sense.
    I dont particularly have anything against OP MC's, as you might think if you read this, but i do have something against OP MC's that started out weak and the author just went "oh hell, op it is!" Somewhere in the middle of the story, seemingly without much happening over time.
     
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  10. Bugis-san

    Bugis-san Well-Known Member

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    Cheat engine where you can get 99999 token and one defeat all enemies in one hit. Oh, also with dope asf music running in the background such as Trance - 009 sound system dreamscape, Evanescence, Let the bodies hit the floor and x files theme song. Couple it with notepad and type in the magic words : "Today i want to show u how to hack club penguin/ninja saga". Boom u got a nice tutorial video.

    So what are we talking about again?
     
  11. Exvalkyrie

    Exvalkyrie Well-Known Member

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    All Knowing Ones: Knowledge itself is Power, thus those who held most is an Existence which unbeatable to the lesser ones.
    Thou shalt fear the man who know to wield a sword rather a giant who don't, if both was given a sword.
    Thou shalt fear the man who attack when thy are negligent, hide when thou search him, and run when he's in disadvantage.
    Thou shalt fear the man who reach a height of power faster than anyone.
    Thou shalt fear the man who can grab the heart of his nemesis, whom he can't slay, yet.
     
  12. Wize

    Wize [20 years ahead] [PROCRASTINATOR]

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    It's where you kill gannondorf straight after you've completed the tutorial. That's cheating
     
  13. Robbini

    Robbini Logical? Illogical? Random? Or Just Unique?

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    THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP AND OR LOVE

    No i mean, literally someone who's either empowered by having any party members, or who can make free adjustments to party members' stats or skills, with divisions into outright pure stat buffing or those who can modify friends' skills to make new skills but not instantly or a craftsman who can't use anything they craft which might be the best there is.

    Basically a buff-type cheat, who's not necessarily too strong on their own, but can let their friends (in these cases usually ends up rather subservient, so you get the idea of what they end up as) become stronger, which'll help him get new materials and friends through their strength which'll make him stronger, creating a cycle.
     
  14. Yunchii

    Yunchii Best Waifu - Tamamo-no-Mae

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    Power Overwhelming and whosyourdaddy
     
  15. tahzib1451

    tahzib1451 Title?is it food?

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    unlimited ammo.....thats what i loooove.....
     
  16. OverlordPotato

    OverlordPotato Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    When author runs out of ideas, time for some good ol' Nakama PoWAAAH
    It's dumb and works 100% of the time.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
  17. nightcore34

    nightcore34 Well-Known Member

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    You said future knowledge in the context of same world future. But what about Past Life knowledge from a different world? Release that Witch as an example, Roland is roflstomping all others with his modern day knowledge. So if you are in a time-period where its technologically lower than yours, your knowledge can be a cheat itself.
     
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  18. Saladinxc

    Saladinxc Well-Known Member

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    What about li qiye op because of his op ness
     
  19. BigBadBoi

    BigBadBoi Well-Known Member

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    Plot armor deus ex machina cheat - the power to literally survive/win a battle through a random coincidence/getting a godly treasure by pure coincidence after literally having a desperate need of said treasure
     
  20. GabeZhul

    GabeZhul Well-Known Member

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    Not really. Both hard work and talent exist within the framework of any story, and a character utilizing them to their fullest is in no way cheating. To go with a gaming example: spending months mastering a character in Street Fighter to a point where you can use them to beat everyone in a tournament is not a cheat. Using hacks to give the character more invincibility frames or make them faster, thus giving you an unfair advantage over others, is a cheat.