Activision banned over 60,000 accounts in Call of Duty: Warzone yesterday. In a statement, the publisher cited use of cheat software in the battle royale. The bans follow several months of community frustration about aimbot and wallhack cheats that players blatantly use in both casual matches and major Warzone tournaments.
“Today we banned 60,000 accounts for confirmed cases of using cheat software in Warzone, bringing our total to date of more than 300,000 permabans worldwide since launch,” Activision wrote. “We are also continuing our efforts to identify and address cheat providers at the source, who distribute unauthorized third party software for modding or hacking.”
Warzone’s cheating problem started not long after launch in March of 2020. Activision and developer Infinity Ward started cracking down on cheaters last April. Those efforts included ban waves, 2-factor authentication, and an improved in-game reporting feature. Despite all this, the cheating raged on. Use of aimbots and wallhack cheating software became even more abundant as 2020 went on, so the publisher’s statement from April carried about the same weight and authority of a substitute teacher.
Activision’s new promise to improve the state of Warzone includes enhancements to the game’s internal anti-cheat software, additional detection technology, consistent and timely bans, and new resources dedicated to monitoring and enforcement “to root out both cheaters and cheat providers.”
The blog reads, “We know cheaters are constantly looking for vulnerabilities, and we continue to dedicate resources 24/7 to identify and combat cheats, including aimbots, wallhacks, trainers, stat hacks, texture hacks, leaderboard hacks, injectors, hex editors and any third party software that is used to manipulate game data or memory.”
After months of silence, there’s also a vow to make regular communication updates on anti-cheat progress. The announcement also states that Warzone’s development team, Raven Software, will provide the updates going forward, whereas Infinity Ward tackled the cheaters last year during Modern Warfare’s year of content. “We will provide monthly updates at a minimum, and when possible, weekly updates to the community,” the blog reads.
One big takeaway from the statement is that it finally confirms that Warzone has its own “internal anti-cheat software,” for which Activision is promising “enhancements.” The publisher has been tight-lipped on whether or not anti-cheat software exists in Warzone. The game has been so saturated with cheaters that players were skeptical of any existence of anti-cheat software in Warzone, leaving many to assume there wasn’t any.
Still, it’s hard to feel optimistic after the last ban wave and anti-cheat efforts made such little impact, and with high-profile players like Vikram “Vikkstar” Singh Barn leaving the game due to cheating. But maybe 2021’s stand against cheaters will hold more promise. Warzone has millions of active players, and they all deserve a fair chance at earning a victory royale.