Worlds Adrift inventory viewer is a tool which could parse JSON files and display them in a visual format to show a player or container’s inventory and information. The information itself could be taken directly from the SpatialOS inspector, meaning customer support agents with little programming knowledge were able to utilise the tool to see what a player currently had. Additionally, the tool would flag up any duplicated schematics, even if they were found in another container in the same folder. This meant that a CS agent would be able to construct a folder structure consisting of a ships containers for example, and still find duplicated schematics even if they had been split across a number of containers. This was then utilised to penalise players who had been performing exploits to duplicate items in-game.
Below is an example of a shipping container. The UI is designed to appear similar to the in-game version, displaying items of the correct size, position and rotation in the grid-based inventory. However, not every item was textured, so things like clothes were simply shown as a generic clothing item.
The four engine schematics in the bottom-right corner have red borders, indicating the UUID for this engine has been found elsewhere. In this case, all four engines are the same and the duplicated schematics are all in the same container.
Next, we can view a specific player’s inventory:
Here we can see the user Fureniku has a few relatively normal items in their inventory, but one engine schematic is again flagged in red. Hovering over it gives us a tooltip with information about why it has been highlighted (shown below). We can also see a lot of player-specific information regarding general progression. If a player had an exceptionally high lifetime knowledge score, for example, this could also be considered suspicious (as a player could consume a schematic for knowledge points). On a more positive side, this UI also shows us the player’s current shipyard card. In some cases, players would accidentally become locked out of a shipyard, and this lets the customer support reps easily find the number to pass back to the player.
Overall its a shame this tool was needed, but duplicating items had become a problem later in the game’s lifecycle and this was an easy way to provide irrefutable evidence of a player cheating. The community was receptive of the fact these cheating players could then be banned, improving player integrity in the game and allowing those playing legitimately to have a more enjoyable experience.