It’s been seven months since Bungie launched Destiny, a video game in which players travel the galaxy recreating the myth of Sisyphus, and this whole time, one of the game’s biggest issues has been idlers—people who log into strikes or PVP battles, put down their controllers, and let other players do all the work.
See, the best rewards in Destiny aren’t based on how much you do—they’re based on whether or not you complete the missions and tasks at hand. So a devious player can join an activity like the weekly heroic strike—which now forces you into automatic matchmaking—and then just do nothing, letting the rest of the team grind out enemies while he or she goes and plays Pokémon. Anyone who’s matched up with random players has likely run into this problem at least once—idlers are a common plague on the game.
That’s why it’s good to hear that the developers are finally planning to fix this problem. Bungie’s vague on the details—are they ever not?—but based on what they wrote in last night’s Weekly Update, it sounds like they’re cracking down hard:
This week, we’ve restricted a small number of the most toxic players from matchmaking. The restrictions we’re putting on their accounts are temporary and apply only to the activities where they were chronically idle. If the affected players keep up this behavior after the restrictions lapse, we will apply stronger and (eventually) permanent restrictions on their accounts.
Bungie also suggests using the “report” function to tell them when a player’s contributing nothing to the team. How will they determine who’s a chronic idler? What sort of punishments will they hand out? No idea. But at least they’re doing something.