Overwatch screenshot of Soldier 76 hitting the camera

If you've been playing Overwatch for any length of time you've most likely encountered people who are just sitting at spawn in competitive, walling off teammates with Mei, and just being a completely disruptive nuisance in general. Like most people you've probably tried reporting them in the hope that Blizzard will sort them out, but unfortunately the report system was almost entirely meaningless and without any sort of bite... until now!

According to a recent update by Community Manager Lylirra the Overwatch Reporting & Penalty system has been greatly improved and is now going to dish out rightful punishment for any abusive behavior, harassment, in-game spam, intentional inactivity and griefing! The whole post is short but sweet, so here it is:

"Play nice; play fair is one of Blizzard's core values. It’s something we took to heart in creating Overwatch and remains a priority as we continue to support the game and our players. This not only applies to the new content we develop and the balance changes we make, but also to the features we add or improve upon over time.

We believe that our in-game reporting and player penalty system is one of our most important features, and it’s something we want to invest in significantly over the next year. To this end, effective immediately, we will be issuing increased penalties to players in response to verified reports of bad behavior. In Overwatch, that means anything from abusive chat, harassment, in-game spam, match inactivity (being intentionally AFK), and griefing. If you see someone engaging in any of these types of behaviors, report them. Players in violation will be silenced, suspended, or even banned from the game as a result.

We know that making Overwatch a truly welcoming environment is an ongoing process, and this is only the first step. Over the next several months, we have plans to make additional improvements based on your feedback, including scaling competitive season bans, a notification system that will alert you when a player you’ve reported is actioned, and functionality that will allow us to more aggressively penalize players who attempt to abuse the in-game reporting tool."

The improved system is currently only available on the PC, but if you're playing on consoles worry not as Blizzard is actively working on the feature. Its probably going to take a little while given how locked-in consoles are, but the important thing to take from this is that it is indeed coming.

And as a final note and sadly necessary note, don't waste your reports on one-tricks or people whose heroes you don't like! Not only does getting angry over hero picks make you more likely to lose, but the more you waste your reports the less they will mean in the eyes of the system, so just save them for people that truly deserve it.

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