After inflicting them with hallucinations, vanishing guns, and 'quicksand', Call of Duty will now name and shame banished cheaters mid-game

modern warfare 2 and warzone 2.0
(Image credit: Activision Blizzard)

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 season 5 is here, bringing with it new gear, new maps, and an unkillable German shepherd that lives on your belt. But it's also brought an update to the game's anti-cheat system. No longer content with plaguing cheaters with bizarre torments like hallucinations and disappearing weapons, COD is turning to the most potent motivator of all to deter evildoers in multiplayer matches: shame.

In a post on Twitter (or a tweet on X), COD's Team Ricochet anti-cheat squad announced that "starting in Season 05, the kill feed will notify lobbies when #TeamRICOCHET and its systems have removed a problem player from the game." In other words, the game's anti-cheat will throw up a message in the bottom left of the screen to tell you when it's turfed out a hacker in much the same way it tells you when someone has scored a sick headshot.

And why not? Evicting a cheater from a game is pretty much the ultimate form of taking them out, and everyone likes it when games like Tarkov put out their kill lists of cheaters they've taken out. While I doubt sticking a username in the kill feed whenever cheaters get banned will make a sizable dent in how many of them there are, it'll certainly be satisfying for players to see enemies using hacks face swift justice.

In fact, players already seem to be responding positively to the change. The replies to Team Ricochet's tweet are a sea of "W," "Nice," and other words I believe the kids use these days to indicate approval. There are plenty of people complaining about overzealous bans and begging to have accounts reinstated, too, but that's the case whenever an announcement like this gets made.

Being an absurdly massive series, it's always interesting to see what COD cooks up to manage the countless cheaters that assault it every day. It's become a kind of videogame laboratory, experimenting with all sorts of wild and woolly ideas to deter wrongdoing and keep honest players (relatively) content. Sometimes—like with the aforementioned hallucinations—those ideas work well enough to make it into the game. Others, like one called "Quicksand" that would randomly make cheaters move at half-speed, end up detracting from legitimate players' experiences and get removed. But it's always interesting to see where such a popular multiplayer game's anti-cheat thinking is at.

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.