Bungie now says it’s unbanning Destiny 2 players ‘banned in error’

Remember how yesterday Destiny 2’s community was all freaked out about account bans they believed were being caused by use of overlays from programs like OBS, XSPLIT, Fraps, Mumble, and Discord? And remember how Bungie’s PC project lead tweeted to call that “internet BS”?

Bungie followed that up with a statement clarifying that 400 PC players were indeed banned, but manually and not for overlay-related reasons, and that it had overturned four beta bans. Now the studio has walked back its initial statements even more.

“As part of our ban review process, we have identified a group of players who were banned in error. Those players have been unbanned. The bans were not related to the third-party applications listed above. We will continue to review the process we use to ensure a fun and fair game.”

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Bungie denies Destiny 2 community claims that third-party apps are triggering PC permabans [Updated]

We’ve updated with Bungie’s latest statement at the end of this post.

It’s a classic case of he said, she said: the MMO edition.

Following yesterday’s rollout of Destiny 2 on the PC, players have flocked to the official forums and Reddit in consternation. The issue? Apparently, some folks claim that the use of certain third-party apps has triggered account bans despite Bungie’s never having expressly forbidding the community from using such programs. Even worse, players who receive a permaban in this fashion cannot appeal their case to the studio.

Some of the alleged programs that are causing these issues include OBS, XSPLIT, Fraps, Mumble, Discord, MSI Afterburner, and EVGA Precision XOC.

Despite the rising outcry, Bungie denies that this is the case. “We do block programs from pushing their code into our game,” PC Project Lead David Shaw tweeted. “Most overlays work like that. We don’t ban for that tho. That’s internet BS.”

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Notorious EVE Online player banned for threatening to cut off someone’s hands in real life

Yes, you’ve read that headline correctly. It’s been an insane day for EVE Online, as players awoke to the news that powerful military alliance Circle of Two had been betrayed by one of its top people. A player named The Judge stole over a trillion ISK worth of assets from the alliance and gave away all of its space stations to its enemies in one of the biggest political betrayals the game has ever seen. We’ll have a full report on the record-breaking theft and the current political situation in EVE later tonight, but this story has already taken an unusual turn.

Circle of Two’s leader, a notorious player named gigX, was so furious to learn of The Judge’s betrayal that he went into full meltdown mode in the alliance chat channel. Not content to keep his rivalry in-game, gigX asked his alliance to give him The Judge’s real name and home address. He followed up the request by writing “The Judge feel free to use your hands by typing here” before adding “while you can” to make a pretty serious threat.

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Overwatch racks up 7M players, bans 1500 of them

It’s been a little over a week since Overwatch launched, and in that short time Blizzard’s new team shooter has become a bonafide success in the market.

As of yesterday, Overwatch passed its seven millionth player, which represents a lot of revenue for the buy-to-play game. Need some more big numbers before you’ll be impressed? To date, Overwatch players have collectively clocked 119 million hours in the live game and swapped heroes 326 million times.

A small handful of those players won’t be seen in the game any more, however. Over 1,500 Chinese accounts have been permanently banned due to cheating. This is the first wave of bans, with Blizzard obviously sending a message to any players out there who might consider using a hack to gain a competitive advantage.

Curious what the Overwatch experience is like? Read our launch impressions of the super-powered shooter!

Source: Business Wire, Daily Dot. Thanks Khalith and Pepperzine for the tip!


Flameseeker Chronicles: Why wave-ban Guild Wars 2 cheaters?

Last week, our very own Bree Royce summed up a response given by ArenaNet’s Chris Cleary to a self-confessed hacker on the game’s subreddit who asked why he had not been banned for his actions. A list of offences was given in the post, and the indignant OP explained that the purpose of this bout of ill-advised honesty was to shame the company into taking swifter and more decisive action against cheaters. Guild Wars 2 Game Security Lead Cleary’s response to the hacker — who used the name MegaWormHole — received as many harsh words as the hacker himself, so I thought I should weigh in on the issue and discuss my views on how ArenaNet handles hacking (and cheating in general for that matter).

Cheating detection is a whopper of an issue for MMO developers to handle, especially since both fairness and equality of resource access are crucial in successfully managing massive online communities. Having said that, if an anti-hacking system is too rigorous, false positives can occur and honest players then suffer for those who decide to cheat. In this edition of Flameseeker Chronicles, I’ll break down Cleary’s response to this hacking admission while discussing batch banning and how adequately this deals with cheating in GW2. 

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League of Legends tests automated punishments for bad player behavior

Getting on top of bad player behavior in League of Legends may be an impossible job — for mere people, that is. But what if you could create an automated system that could be the judge, jury, and executioner of naughty acts?

That’s exactly what’s being tested right now on the North American servers. The new system will receive player reports of bad behavior, attempt to verify the offense, and deliver an appropriate punishment (temporary or permanent bans) within minutes of the submission.

“When negative behavior occurs, we know that the faster a player receives feedback, the better their chances of reforming,” Riot Games reasoned. The studio said that it will have a team to monitor the first few thousand cases and has plans to expand the system to include positive rewards in the future as well as follow-up notifications to those affected.


Steam empowers studios to permaban players

Forget modgate — the next controversial decision by Valve might already be here. The company announced that it will be allowing game studios to identify disruptive or cheating players and target them for permanent bans from that particular game on Steam.

Valve explained its reasoning behind the so-called game ban: “In order to ensure the best possible online multiplayer experience, Valve allows developers to implement their own systems that detect and permanently ban any disruptive players, such as those using cheats. Game developers inform Valve when a disruptive player has been detected in their game, and Valve applies the game ban to the account.”

Affected players will need to contact the developer rather than Valve to appeal such bans.

[Source: Steam via Eurogamer]