The fight against the Smurfs and toxic players in Overwatch 2 has received further information from Blizzard. I am giving new players a straightforward onramp into the game. I think the changes are generally relatively sound.
Onboarding new players seem to be an effective way to introduce them to the chaos. However, some players could object to the requirement to add a mobile phone number to their Battle.net account, especially those who maintain alternate accounts for various reasons.
For each extra account, you’ll need to figure out how to get a different phone number. According to Blizzard, prepaid or VOIP numbers won’t be identified. Perhaps your kind roommate or relative will be ready to offer you their phone number (note to self: cook a really nice dinner for your partner later).
If you do this, it’s possible that your secondary accounts won’t be able to receive cosmetics, progress, achievements, or Overwatch League tokens.
Overwatch and I spoke. The developers asked if it was possible to mix those goods between accounts on the same platform for the Defence Matrix project (e.g., from one PC account to another).
According to Bill Warnecke, the lead software engineer for Overwatch 2, there isn’t yet any account integration or account merger between various accounts.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise given what we’ve learned about account merging, but those who are only now becoming aware of the value of a phone number could be. But the developers gave a very sensible explanation for the change.
“In the past, accounts were linked to a box price, so there was some sort of investment from a player into an account in order to obtain it,” claims Warnecke. With the release of Overwatch 2, the initial box price is no longer an issue.
The fundamental idea behind SMS Protect is to invest money on the account owner’s behalf and impose limitations or restrictions on the potential options for retaining the account. There are no exclusions or workarounds to the rules.
Players using multiple accounts makes perfect sense. Making that a defect, however, would negate the necessity and advantage of SMS Protect’s widespread use.
The SMS Protect effect on players who use numerous identities yet behave honestly was studied by the Overwatch team for both its advantages and disadvantages. However, they came to the conclusion that it was more important to have a stronger defence against cheats and trolls.
“Accounts were tied to box values previously, so it required some form of commitment from a player to an account to receive it,” Warneke said. With the release of Overwatch 2, which is now free, that initial box value was removed.
SMS Protect’s main objective is to invest money on behalf of the account owner while placing some restrictions on how you may use your account. There aren’t any types of systemic flaws or exceptions.
He concluded that having a more effective defence against trolls and scammers would be beneficial.
“It’s completely acceptable for players to have multiple accounts. However, if this were to become a drawback, it would undermine the goodness and integrity of implementing SMS Protect on a global scale.
Overwatch The group evaluated SMS Protect’s advantages and disadvantages for fair-playing players with several accounts. But it is more significant.
According to Warneke, if you have many accounts, SMS Protect can have an adverse effect on a good player who has no ulterior motives or plans to cheat. It presents a hurdle for an honourable athlete. As we discussed adding this feature, we gave this one a lot of consideration and discussion.
SMS Protect “kind of concentrates on the bad people and players who are willing to utilise hacks and who could be willing to cycle through multiple identities. We actively look for gamers who play in a unique way, behave noticeably, or are detected by any potential cheating fingerprints.
However, if a player’s account is banned and they can then just rejoin with a new account, no amount of detection will be able to stop us from keeping bad actors out of the game.
The cost of being willing to cheat has to be slightly increased for those players. Losing your account is a far heavier punishment in Overwatch 2. with respect to Overwatch 1,
According to Overwatch lead designer Scott Mercer, the Defence Matrix defences are primarily concerned with “trying to make it uncomfortable for those who use hacks, but also to make it more expensive and uneconomical to develop these exploits.”
I think most of the Overwatch community can agree with that. Just a shame that many loyal, multiple-account players will suffer as a result.
In order to play Overwatch 2, players will now need to connect a phone number to their Battle.net account, a new condition that wasn’t fully explained in a recent Blizzard blog post announcing the change.
Online cooperative game Overwatch is typically played as a first-person shooter. The game has a variety of game types, but its main focus is squad-based fighting between two opposing teams of six players each.
After its release in October, Overwatch 2 will entirely replace Overwatch 1, rendering the first game completely unplayable. Before a recent AMA on the r/games subreddit, where the Overwatch 2 game director Aaron Keller was questioned specifically about this, the specifics of this situation were unclear.
Overwatch 2 will record players’ voice chats, according to Blizzard Entertainment, but they will also require their phone numbers.
On October 4th, Overwatch 2’s PvP mode will be available for no charge. To play the follow-up, you don’t need to own OW1 or buy the Watchpoint Pack. Additionally, both modern and vintage heroes are free to be unlocked.