Overwatch 2 devs are begging you to stop smurfing
Overwatch 2 brought some mild gameplay changes to the core Overwatch experience, with the biggest change being its step into the free-to-play world - but the lack of changes means that the same old problems remain. Namely, smurfing remains a problem.
For those of you uninitiated into the cult of competitive gaming, a smurf account is an account used by a higher-level player to enter lower-level games, in hopes that they can absolutely flatten their competition. It's a frustrating phenomenon that makes online matchmaking incredibly unfair, but it's also tough to police as there is always room for banning new players that the game determines as too powerful.
All developers can do is beg - and that's exactly what they're doing.
Overwatch 2 devs on smurfing - 'please don't do that'
It looks like frustrations with smurf accounts on Overwatch 2 are reaching fever pitch, as they're now simply asking nicely for fans not to use them.
Speaking on the Overwatch 2 dev chat stream yesterday, lead meta designer Scott Mercer put a simple request to fans - "to be clear, please don't do that".
"The situation we don't want is like, 'Hi, I'm a new player to Overwatch,' and we totally misevaluate your skill and you lose a bunch of games because we think you're way better than you are," he continues. It's a frustration that makes total sense, but it's something that they've clearly had struggle policing in the wake of the idea of new players simply trying to get to grips with the shooter only to be banned for overperforming their expectations.
Overwatch 2 dev says that smurfing is 'the bane of my existence'
The senior software engineer Morgan Maddren goes on to support Mercer's comments.
"One thing that's like the bane of my existence is when people do unranked to GM, like they make a fresh account and play to GM," he says. It's a fairly common practice in competitive circles, and it looks like developers are reaching the end of their tethers.
It's a practice that has been present in Overwatch for too long, and sadly, it looks like it'll stick around until there's a real way of cracking down on it. The war on smurfs rages on.