Overwatch Players Who Exploit Custom Games For XP Face Getting Banned, Says Blizzard

Blizzard is not happy with a particular portion of Overwatch‘s player base right now. A lengthy statement released yesterday by game director Jeff Kaplan has revealed that the developer is aware of a particular exploit currently being abused in the shooter’s Custom Game playlist, which allows players to accumulate match experience without having to actually engage in play, essentially earning XP for doing nothing.

Kaplan says that the development team has always been aware of such potential abuses of the system, even before the Game Browser and Custom Game features were introduced earlier this year, but it had given players the “benefit of the doubt before becoming overly restrictive with the system.”

“It’s very disappointing to us that players abused the system to gain experience while inactive,” says Kaplan, who continues to confirm that, as of today, Skirmish matches in Custom Game will no longer award experience, with an AFK timer now in place for the game type, but only in custom variants.

Kaplan certainly pulls no punches on the matter, either, following the above with a blunt response to those that believe such activities are in a grey area that is not against the rules.

Let me take a grey area and make it starkly black and white for you. Abusing and exploiting Custom Game or any other game mode to earn experience in Overwatch while inactive is NOT ok. The reason I want to be absolutely clear about this is because we are going to start to take disciplinary action against people who partake in these activities.

Players creating Custom Game lobbies that encourage, whether jokingly or otherwise, the practice of gaining experience while inactive are at risk of having their account slapped with a ban, says Kaplan, so if you’re in either camp, it’s probably a good idea to stop what you’re doing. Regardless, if such activity continues despite all of the above warnings, the development team will have no choice but to disable experience gain in Custom Games completely, an outcome that he hopes won’t ever come to fruition.

Do not create Custom Games with the intent of gaining experience while inactive. Don’t join those games. Don’t jokingly put those names in your own Custom Games. And report players who are abusing the system.

Well then, if that’s not a clear enough message that Blizzard won’t tolerate such illicit activities, I don’t know what is. The above Custom Game changes outlined by Kaplan for Overwatch should already be available in your region, regardless of platform. Lesson of the day? Don’t try to cheat the system, because the system bites back.

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