Randy Pitchford Doesn’t Want You Editing Your Borderlands 2 Files

You may have heard about a very, very easy change to an INI file for Borderlands 2 that gives players access to infinity Golden Keys and free promotional items. If you have and INI configuration is something you are used to, I would stay away from this one. If you have no idea what an INI file is, now is not the best time to go learn.

There seems to be an extremely easy and accessible way to change one of Borderlands 2’s INI files to unlock a potentially game breaking amount of Golden Keys. You could also unlock all the promotional pre-order items. Don’t expect links or an instruction guide here, you won’t find it. Instead we’re sending along a warning from Gearbox’s president Randy Pitchford.


Tyler Gates ‏@Tgizzlevc

@DuvalMagic Much love for borderlands 2! What corrective action can we anticipate for the golden keys exploit?


Randy Pitchford@DuvalMagic

@Tgizzlevc not sure yet. May strip keys. We may strip gear. We have to make some decisions…


You can find those tweets at this link for confirmation. While the exact action Gearbox may take is uncertain, this is a clear indication that they are not happy about the exploit. Yes, the method is easy and it shouldn’t have been but when you’re talking about unlocking content most people had to pay for, you should know there will be consequences. It should be relatively easy to find the culprits, as well. Search for players connected online who have unlocked certain promo items and check for keys to match the account. No keys? You get punished. Keys? Continue enjoying the game.

There will be those who fain ignorance and use the excuse that hey, it was an INI option that shouldn’t have been there. While true, that doesn’t mean you should give yourself 255 Golden Keys and Premiere Club access.

If you have yet to do this or have never heard of it, use this post as a warning that you really, really shouldn’t mess with this game’s INI files right now.

Borderlands 2 released the 18th and sits atop of Steam’s player count list with over 97,000 players. This trounces the other games by just about 50,000 players. It wold be interesting to know how many of them have exploited this INI change.


UPDATE: Randy and Gearbox have updated the game getting rid of the exploit. He also had some tweets to send out.


Golden Keys. Exploit patched, no punishment (we get the temptation: doors unlocked, keys in the ignition).

Be cool. We all know when we’re cheating, so be good. I’ll be giving tons of Golden Keys soon.



Have you exploited this INI within Borderlands 2? If so, why?

There are 10 comments

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  1. PantherDST

    No Thanks… I prefer to enjoy the game in the manner it was net to be played. Having 200+ golden takes the joy of leveling up away and shortens the total amount of time I will spend playing the game.

  2. Tom Murphy

    this sounds like it’s mainly for PC users, but even so while I’d like to get some cool powerful weapons i would rather get them the same way the original did, with class mods or such to increase rare loot chances. Changes files to give you infinite keys is too cheap for my liking

  3. Frank

    Saw how to do it, ridiculously simple, they didn’t even bother using codewords or hiding it. But I didn’t bother.

  4. JCase

    I added 1 key, because I didn’t realize what box it was until after I clicked it (saw box, ran over and clicked without reading). The grenades I got from the box were crap shortly after, and have been since deleted anyway. Left with 2 keys, and no “gold key loot” (1 for premiere club, 1 from Shift).
    Also, Mr. Pitchford needs to be careful, as he himself encouraged modding of Borderlands 2, like the community did with Borderlands. Sure, he didn’t say gold keys, but BL1 has player created mods which generate rare weapons randomly – which is all the gold keys do (and no, I’m not referring to the save editor – a mod using a high end boss loot table to fill crates, and a map filled with hundreds of crates to go along with it).

  5. Brad Whelan

    What is this article trying to be, my Father? Pushing your viewpoint on others will not magically change what people choose to do with their game, nor will it change their minds about editing files on their machine. This should not be a controversy at all and I don’t see why people are so up in arms about this. As we all should know by now, PC gamers get a thrill from editing and modding their PC games, and this should come as no surprise. The fact that Gearbox so lazily left behind such an important exploit in a basic .ini file, is no fault but their own.

    So, if people choose to ruin the game for themselves, then by all means, go ahead and use the golden key exploit. And let’s just leave it at that instead of the condescending preaching from above.

  6. CFSG3

    They need to blow me first before I become a socialist asshole like them. I mean my stats are my own no one else. I’m not on display for the world, and if I am I want to be payed for it. And not by some dumb golden key. And if 2k dare thinks that they can do whatever they want because modders no how to mod a game. Well Guess what it’s the last game I buy. I suggest either boycotting the company, of course I know that isn’t the only thing that will happen. It’s crap like this that have people turn to piracy more then actually buying the game. Why buy the game when your going to get screwed. I can understand the golden key better if you had to pay for it with the money you make in the game. And if they actually had gold items come out but that ain’t the case. I can understand 1 gold key per level. But this socialistic nonsense has gone to far. BOYCOTT GAME COMPANIES TILL THEY GET THE HINT THAT IT’S CRAP LIKE THIS THAT RUINS A GREAT GAME!!! AND HEY IF SOMEBODY PIRATES IT ITS THE SAME WAY AS BOYCOTTING EITHER WAY THEY LOOSE MONEY!!! I MEAN I SPENT MY MONEY ON A PRODUCT THAT WAS SUPPOSE TO BE MINE. NOT SOME SOCIALISTIC JACK A$$. I SHOULD SUE THE COMPANY FOR DOING CRAP LIKE THIS. AGAIN I’M NOT PUTTING ON A SHOW FOR THE WORLD. AND IF I DID THE GAME COMPANY COULDN’T AFFORD ME. TO TOP IT OFF SEEING IT ON FACE BOOK OR TWITTER LITTERALLY JUST MAKE THE IT APPEAR THE PERSON DID HAD A LIFE. NOW IF I WAS TO POST SOMETHING IT WOULD BE THAT I WAS CONTRACTED FEDERAL SECURITY GUARD FOR THE MILITARY ONCE. AND WITHOUT THE VETERAN PREFRENCE CRAP. AND EVEN THEN I DIDN’T POST THAT TIL NOW. SO SUCK IT HARD RANDY PITCH FORD I ACTUALLY HAD A LIFE!!! SO AGAIN LET US HAVE THE KEYS OR BOYCOTTS ARE COMING AND IT WILL BE THE LAST GAME I GET FROM 2K OR THAT DEALS WITH STEAM.

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