So does Zaroff really cheat? I agree with the previous editor in that he has created a "game" in which he is in control. What, then, constitutes "cheating"? Does Zaroff "act dishonestly"? I don't think so. However, do he "deceive by trickery"? Yes, he does, and in two places:
The decoy lights that he set up on the lighthouse were placed to indicate "a channel...where there is none." This, according to the definition, deceives the incoming sailors into thinking that the route in the sea was safe, but of course, it is far from it.
In three instances, Zaroff declines to murder him. The game would have been finished, as Rainsford would have been killed. However, he "violates the rules (as in a game) and therefore, he "cheats" according to the definition provided.
I don't believe General Zaroff cheated in any way during his hunt of Rainsford in "The Most Dangerous Game." Although Zaroff's rules were obviously both unfair and inhumane, he apparently did not break any of them while hunting Rainsford. Zaroff basically set no rules for himself to follow: He would hunt Rainsford and would concede defeat after the third day if his prey had still survived. When Rainsford jumped into the sea to avoid Zaroff, the general assumed he had drowned; when Rainsford reappeared suddenly in Zaroff's bedroom, the general conceded defeat and declared Rainsford the winner--as he had said he would.