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Dota 2 is banning some players until 2038

(Image credit: Valve)

Dota 2 is getting ready for the next ranked season, kicking off tomorrow, which also means getting rid of some of the game's naughtier players. Valve announced that it would be banning people in various waves, which started yesterday. What it didn't mention was the length of the bans, and some players are now discovering their account is in jail for up to 19 years.  

The Steam forum and subreddit are full of people complaining about getting banned for nearly two decades, and even more people revelling in their comeuppance. It's an oddly specific date, but Valve didn't choose it. January 19, 2038 is the latest date that can be set using 32-bit time representation, it turns out, so if you've received a 19-year ban, you're probably banned forever. 

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Valve is planning to start issuing weekly bans in the coming weeks, too, which will strike without warning. Banned accounts will also have the associated phone number blacklisted from being able to access ranked matchmaking. Valve also hopes to reduce the amount of smurf accounts, recently fixing a loophole that let them play without a unique phone number. 

Check out the Dota 2 blog for more details on the update. 

Fraser Brown

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long. He thinks labradoodles are the best dogs but doesn't get to write about them much.