How Blizzard plans to handle Overwatch cheaters

Purveyor of fine online games Blizzard Entertainment is no stranger to dealing with cheaters. In a blog post, community manager Lylirra has set out exactly how it will handle ne'er-do-wells in Overwatch, along with a reminder that some players are just better than you.

The tried-and-tested permaban will be Blizzard's weapon of choice. As there's no subscription fee, there's no loss to Blizz for kicking cheaters out. There's no three-strikes system or probation period either. If you're found to be hacking, botting or otherwise being a tool, that's it.

In addition to using the Overwatch client's report menu, you can email to tattle on suspected cheaters (though you shouldn't expect a response).

If you're like me and suspect that—despite your middle-of-the-road skills—everyone who beats you is hacking, Blizzard has some advice to help reduce false reports:

  • Our in-game camera system does not always play back footage at the same fidelity as real-time gameplay (this loss in fidelity applies to the killcam, Plays of the Game, Highlights, and—to a lesser extent—the spectator camera as well). This can sometimes result in a player’s aim appearing more snappy or less fluid in playback than it did in-game.
  • With the above, there may be bugs with the in-game camera system that affect playback footage. In the Closed Beta, we actually had a bug that caused the killcam and spectator camera angle to suddenly “snap” whenever Zarya cast Particle Barrier or Projected Barrier. While we’re unaware of any issues with the camera system at present, undiscovered bugs are always a possibility to consider.
  • Lastly, some players are just really good at first-person shooters. Through practice and years of experience, these players’ movements and reaction times can occasionally appear unnatural (if not physically impossible) to those who may not have been exposed to that particular level of play before.

Play fair, folks, and remember: smurfing—not even once.