Deceive Inc. Review: Blown Cover

I had the opportunity to play cheat inc a few times before launch in two different preview events. In my first previewI was suspicious that the game hadn’t quite found its identity yet, preferring shooting to stealth. In the final previewI was amazed at how much Sweet Bandits Studios improved the spy hero shooter with just a few simple changes.

And while still enjoying the basics at its core cheat incThere are a handful of things that give me pause now that I’ve had the opportunity to play the release build with the entire community, many of which stem from my initial less-than-shiny impressions.

As I discussed in my last preview, cheat inc works great when you’re in a match against those who have fully embraced the concept of the game: a multiplayer game with hidden roles and an emphasis on espionage and stealth. However, my experience with the full version was a little less than satisfactory.

Because cheat inc gives you guns from the start, many players tend to ignore the spy aspects of the game’s social deception/deduction. Instead, they often start each match with guns blazing. When that happens – and it happens quite often – the matches are usually over before the initial insertion phase is even remotely complete.

While cheat inc has undeniable shooter elements (there are guns after all), the shooting doesn’t feel like it carries the experience. You and other players often go down very quickly once the shooting starts. Considering the ammo is relatively limited and permadeath is baked into the experience, it feels like you should avoid firefights and relying more on gadgets and social cheating to win, a nuance that feels lost in most players I’ve encountered.

Despite the push in that direction cheat incs mechanics, There’s only been a small handful of matches I’ve played that made it to the final stages without turning into all-out firefights within the first few minutes and completely surpassing entire elements that do cheat inc. primarily convincing.

The game would benefit from discouraging players from shooting first and asking questions later. Limiting weapon use by having weapons make good hidden items on the map (as opposed to something you have instantly) or adding heavy impact to killing NPCs can help reduce how trigger-happy so many are when each game begins.

If you’re able to find a match with players who are interested in the game’s spying elements – using gadgets, dressing up in disguise, copying NPC identities, infiltrating facilities to snag high-value packages – then you’ll have a good time , but finding matches with people interested in this style of play rarely happens.

Also Read:  Honkai Star Rail: How to Complete the Hide-and-Seek Quest

Image via Tripwire Interactive

cheat inc you can play solo or in groups of three, but problems are compounded when trying to play as a team. In my team games, I never encountered anyone using a microphone, which made coordinating efforts almost impossible.

These situations are aggravated because during cheat inc has a ping system, it is not dynamic enough to allow fully non-verbal communication.

In other games that require teamwork, you can ping a whole range of objects and contextual information will be provided based on what was pinged. Being able to tell that a safe has been opened, that a disguise has been changed, or that enemies are nearby would go a long way toward encouraging player interaction, but none of that is present in cheat inc Consequently, It’s not really worth playing in squads unless you have a devoted group of friends who want to play together.

Because of this, I far preferred playing solo, which is a shame as I Strictly speaking I preferred playing in teams in my preview events because it required real coordination that added value to the rest of the game.

At $20, Deceive Inc. is also banking on premium currency microtransactions and emphasizing loot boxes. On the surface it only seems to affect the roster, where the majority of characters are initially locked. You can play to earn currency and unlock them that way, but there’s also a predatory element lurking with their inclusion.

Image via Tripwire Interactive

Deceive Inc. Review – The Bottom Line


  • Well-crafted unique spy thriller gameplay that mixes social deduction and extraction shooter.
  • Great feeling of rising tension being drawn on cheat inc‘s spy thriller influences.
  • Solid soundtrack.
  • Diverse characters, abilities and gadgets for many different playstyles.


  • Limited player communication in co-op mode.
  • Many players have an incorrect understanding of how the game should be played.
  • Micropayment based progression model.

cheat inc will live and die off its player base and so far it’s not going too hot. It’s also a shame since I’m such a fan of what the game’s going on mechanically. What’s ruining the experience for me is something that isn’t technically a failure of any of the game’s mechanics, but rather a failure of the players to understand the concept.

Unfortunately, it seems like when you give them guns, players tend to shoot at them, whether that suits their goals or not. Because of this, however, so much of my time with cheat inc I spent in frustrating matches that directly contradicted what I found enjoyable about the experience.

Featured image above tripwire.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top