Blizzard has confirmed details about the permanent ban system that is being put in place for Overwatch. This new permanent banning procedure will kick off on Wednesday 27 September, and will focus on Competitive Play in the acclaimed multiplayer shooter.
These plans for Overwatch were revealed by community manager Josh Engen over on the game’s forums. In short, any gamer who gets three or more seasonal bans within Competitive Play could end up getting a permanent ban from the mode, which would therefore stop them from taking part in any further competitive matches. These bans do not need to be consecutive, so someone who has received a ban in Seasons 2, 4, and 7 would for instance still be eligible for a permanent ban.
Engen also explained exactly why Blizzard has decided to take these steps. “Over the last few months, we’ve made several changes to the game as part of our ongoing effort to build a better, more welcoming experience,” said Engen, citing the increase in penalties for poor behavior in-game including Xbox One Overwatch players being muted for toxic actions or communications. This permanent ban system is now the next step for Blizzard.
Thankfully, Blizzard outlined exactly what players need to avoid in order to stay in the developer’s good books. Leaving a competitive match early or being kicked for inactivity will make the player ineligible for any new matches until that original match has reached its conclusion. Those players who then do not take up the option to rejoin an in-progress game will get a penalty.
Here’s a rundown of what this means in detail, courtesy of Blizzard.
- If you leave or are kicked for inactivity within the first minute of the game, the entire match will be canceled and you will receive a penalty. The remaining players will receive neither a penalty nor a loss.
- If you leave or are kicked for inactivity after the one-minute mark, you will be given two minutes to reconnect or rejoin the match. If you return, the match will resume normally. If not, you will receive a penalty and the remaining players will be given the option to leave without receiving a penalty (though they will still receive a loss).
If a player continues to leave early or be kicked for inactivity, then eventually they will see restrictions on future Competitive Play matches, with the mode being locked for larger periods of time, and repeated violations will incur a seasonal ban. However, completing matches without penalties will get the player back into a good standing.
Blizzard has, of course, taken a very strict stance with Overwatch since the game’s launch, including a huge attempt to permanently ban all Overwatch cheaters. This recent move is clearly meant to keep the Competitive Play mode as it should be – but whether it does work to ensure the fluidity and consistency of Competitive matches only time will tell.
Overwatch is out now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.