Let me state categorically that I do not cheat in multiplayer games. Why do people do it? Its not like a professional sport where cheating can be a shortcut to riches. In games all you are playing for is personal pride and the very fact of cheating surely destroys that pride.
One of my first guesses was that most of the cheating is done by kids who are too young to accept losing. That hypothesis was blown out of the water when my first google search led me to an aimbot for Frontlines which charges a subscription of €20 per month!!! I doubt if many children are paying that much to avoid the ignominy of defeat.
A bit more googling dug out forums dedicated to cheats and cheaters. I have heard about this subculture before but I expected to find something that read like the worst excesses of 4Chan and Something Awful with every poster using expletive laden leet speak. Apparently this is not the case. MPC for example is a well moderated forum with polite users politely discussing how to cheat in games. In fact the whole thing is a lot better behaved than many official game forums. It would seem that cheaters are nice people.
EXCEPT THAT THEY ARE FUCKING CHEATING BASTARDS.
Apologies for that foul language outburst, I don't normally use expletives but I really don't like cheating and I don't like cheaters. Whatever reasons and whatever excuses they use to justify their cheating they are hurting other gamers and they are damaging the whole experience of gaming. The fact that they can be polite and friendly in their own cosy forums somehow makes it worse.
A poster to MPC called Ondscan actually calls out the cheaters and asks "Why Cheat?". There is irony and honesty in equal measure in the responses he got:
I think I started cheating because when you die in CSS you have to wait until the next round to play again. I wanted to keep playing.
Think I started cheating because I work for a living and don't have all day to learn to play a PC game just so some 12 yr old hairless scrotum can sling 'l33t' speak insults at me.
i loved how i can cause rage on people who take the gaming too seriously and start throwing killing threats on you etc. hilarious crap
I started cheating for the sole purpose of cheating: having advantages over other players. I got bored of playing the game the way it was supposed to be played:
I'm just really lazy and I don't feel like waiting to get the newest gear and stuff. I know it takes away the challenge, but to me, that's not really a big deal. e-peen growth is srs bsns.
Meh, I cheat in TF2 because the game is boring.