Overwatch keeps trying to manage one of the largest communities in online gaming, and the players themselves are often the ones getting in the way. What a time to be alive! Anyway, Blizzard thinks they’ve got a new way to moderate these interactions, and we’re all hopeful that this pans out.
Overwatch had the slightly–but crucially–different “Avoid this player” before but that was disabled in 2016. As Kaplan explained in forum posts back then, it sucked for good players because, of course, the tool was exploited. Folks didn’t like playing against players who could beat them, so good players started getting reported for abuse and suddenly they couldn’t find games.
There are some potential pitfalls, as Jeff Kaplan relates in this video. Note the stuff about warnings and punishments for those that choose to be crappy to their fellow Overwatchmen.
Kaplan explains it all:
The complete test realm patch notes are available now. The relevant notes are included here:
–Players can choose to “Avoid as Teammate” with a dropdown menu in the Career Profile
Developer Comments: The addition of the “Avoid as Teammate” option gives players the ability to craft their online gameplay experience. Up to two players can be selected with this feature. If you use the “Avoid as Teammate” option on a player, the matchmaker will no longer place you on a team with the avoided player for one week. To learn more about this feature, click here.
–The “Poor Teamwork” dropdown menu option has been removed
–The “Griefing” dropdown menu option has been renamed “Gameplay Sabotage”
Developer Comments: Due to player confusion about the most appropriate category to report players for poor or toxic gameplay, we are removing the Poor Teamwork option from the reporting system. Players should instead use the Gameplay Sabotage option when players actively harass or disrupt their own team with game mechanics or their actions. Players should not be reported simply for performing poorly, since everyone occasionally has a bad game.
Do you think that these implementation can help turn things around for Overwatch’s online community? Or are you excited to have a chance to keep unhelpful teammates away?