Massive Overwatch 2 anti-toxicity system revealed: SMS, audio recordings, more

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Blizzard has announced a brand new initiative to combat toxicity in Overwatch 2, which will see all voice chat logs recorded and transcribed.

Even though Overwatch 2 will carry over many of the iconic elements that fans of the original know – including several heroes and maps – there are many new features that will take time to learn.

The sequel will feature new game types (such as the Push), new PvE game modes, along with heroes and maps unique to Overwatch 2.

However, just a week ahead of the Overwatch 2 launch, Blizzard has announced a new feature to combat toxicity that will have many players raising eyebrows.

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Overwatch 2 will record audio to combat toxicity

The Overwatch site announced the activation of the “Defense Matrix”, an initiative designed to “help protect the integrity of gameplay and promote positive behavior in Overwatch 2.”

Within the Defense Matrix are several initiatives such as the SMS Protect and the audio transcription project, which has drawn plenty of attention from players.

With SMS Protect, players will have to attach a phone number to their Battle.net account in order to play Overwatch 2. Players can only use the phone number once, and certain types of phone numbers (such as pre-paid and VOIP) cannot be used.

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Overwatch 2 will be recording voice chat to combat toxicity.

While that may be frustrating to Overwatch 2 players, the biggest revelation is the audio transcription project.

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The developers explained that they have been working on detection capabilities that will now include a temporary voice chat recording of a reported player, which will be transcribed using text-to-speech. That text file will be analyzed just like in-game text chat.

Overwatch says that the audio recording will be deleted once it has been transcribed to text, and after review the text file will also be deleted.

Still, some players might be understandably wary of the fact that their voice chat logs are being recorded for potential analysis.