Blizzard will issue stiffer penalties to Overwatch players found guilty of bad behaviour. This will include scaling competitive season bans based on the severity of the infraction. Other new tools are being rolled out that will improve the reporting system, doing things like notifying players when a player they reported has been banned – reinforcing that the system works to the players that are using it.
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“’Play nice; play fair’ is one of Blizzard’s core values,” Overwatch community manager Lylirra writes in a post to the game’s forums. “It’s something we took to heart in creating Overwatch and remains a priority as we continue to support the game and our players.”
Lylirra outlines that the “in-game reporting and player penalty system is one of our most important features” and so Blizzard will “invest in [it] significantly over the next year.”
The first change, Lylirra says is an immediate change, “increased penalties to players in response to verified reports of bad behaviour.” In Overwatch, that means anything from abusive chat, harassment, in-game spam, match inactivity (being intentionally AFK), and griefing. Players found guilty of the behaviour can be “silenced, suspended, or even banned from the game as a result.”
That’s the immediate change, but Lylirra also details upcoming changes: “scaling competitive season bans, a notification system that will alert you when a player you’ve reported is actioned, and functionality that will allow us to more aggressively penalise players who attempt to abuse the in-game reporting tool.”
It sounds like Overwatch is going to become a better place to play in future.