Overwatch developers are stepping up their game when it comes to detecting and punishing cheaters.
Game director Jeff Kaplan previewed the upcoming anti-cheat system during the July 11 Developer Update. Kaplan explained that this new system is designed to crack down on cheating during a live match without also harming the other players.
“We will automatically shut down a match where we detect cheating is happening and we will make sure nobody on either side of the match is penalized for that match being shut down,” Kaplan said.
Kaplan described the new system as “the next evolution of cheat detection in the game” but did not provide further information. A clearer understanding of exactly how the procedure plays out can be seen on the PTR servers where the new system is already live.
A number of players in the PTR have tested the system and documented how it plays out on social media boards. If hacking is detected, the match will end abruptly. A pop-up will then appear that informs players that the system encountered an instance of cheating and the individual responsible is banned. It also states that the previous match was cancelled and neither team will receive a victory or loss as a result.
Cheating has been a nagging issue for Overwatch ever since its launch. Blizzard reported that over 1000 cheaters had been banned only a few weeks after the release of the game but hackers can still be found despite the developers’ continued effort to expose and punish them.
The most common type of cheats in Overwatch are aimbots and wall hacking, which give players perfect aim and the ability to see through walls, respectively. Cases such as these can be found in casual Quick Play matches all the way up to the highest levels of ranked play.
It is uncertain when the new cheating detection system will hit live servers but hackers better watch their backs when it does.