Overwatch

Overwatch player DQ'd from event after being caught using cheats

by Brad Norton
Blizzard Entertainment

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In just two iterations of the Breakable Barriers online tournaments, an Overwatch player has been disqualified from the competition after relying upon third-party aiming software.

Allegations of aim-based hacks are never taken lightly in the realm of competitive Overwatch and a recent incident stemming from the Breakable Barriers tournament has brought the community together to dissect the actions of one particular player. 

Following ample backlash from former Overwatch League competitors and an official investigation from Blizzard, the final verdict has been determined and appropriate punishment has been doled out.

Blizzard - Overwatch
Blizzard - Overwatch
Breakable Barriers is an online Overwatch tournament available to North American and European competitors.

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‘Minions on the Flank’ is the name of a North American Overwatch team that was disqualified from the second iteration of the online tournament that ran from December 21 to December 22 after a DPS player known as ‘w0w’ was caught employing some suspicious aim. 

One of the primary examples being scrutinized by the community features the player on Hanzo throughout Havana. While their aiming and tracking all seems on point, the particularly egregious moment comes when impossibly predicting the location of an enemy Reaper. 

After dropping from the high ground, there’s no line of sight for the Hanzo in question - or any of their teammates for that matter - to spot said Reaper. Yet mere moments after repositioning, the player appears to know precisely where the enemy is hiding. 

Doubling down on the accusations, former Houston Outlaws DPS Jacob ‘Jake’ Lyon believed that the clip was indeed “quite damning.” In another instance shortly after the original clip, the Hanzo is “pre-aiming the enemy Reaper's head before *anyone* has seen Reaper,” he explained.

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On December 23 a manual investigation was conducted by Blizzard which concluded that the Hanzo was unquestionably utilizing third-party software. As a result, the player has “been banned and his team was DQ’d” as communicated by fellow Overwatch player ‘ValentineOW.’ 

Releasing a statement once the manual investigation had come to an end, a teammate of the accused Hanzo explained their side of the story and emphasized that no one else was aware of the cheats at the time.

“Nobody on the team, myself included, were aware of this, as he isn’t a prominent name in the scene,” ‘SaltShaker’ elaborated. “He was a personal friend, so I vouched that he was ‘good’ and was proven wrong. We would not have played with him if we thought anything was wrong.”

Further underscoring how it was the actions of just one player that resulted in the full team being disqualified, SaltShaker wanted to shift the blame away from innocent teammates. “Do not put any of the team at fault for his actions, they did not know this player and ultimately I trusted a friend that was lying to me about his play.”

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Slamming the Hanzo online, former Los Angeles Valiant Support player Scott ‘Custa’ Kennedy had some choice words for the player and expressed that “cheating at anything makes you a loser.

While the team was removed from competition, the show continued on as Skyfoxes took home the victory in the second instance of North American Breakable Barriers competition. There’s no telling when a third tournament might pop up, however this punishment should serve as a lesson to anyone considering third-party cheats in online competition moving forward.