There's no silver bullet for dealing with toxic gamers. But Blizzard has found one cheeky way to turn the blindingly obnoxious into something the whole family can enjoy.
The phrase "gg ez" isn't new to Overwatch. It's an annoying, obnoxious catchphrase that has been around for what feels like forever. I remember seeing back in the days of Brood War, and if you've played any online game in the past decade chances are you'll have had it directed at you or your team at least once.
It's "good game" for lazy arseholes, more or less. And it's also become a common occurrence during Overwatch matches, irrespective of what actually happens. So in a small move that removes one of the many, many ways that players have when they want to be dicks to each other, Blizzard patched "gg ez" so it comes out as something else:
I RECORDED VIDEO TO SHOW YOU THAT I'M NOT LYING pic.twitter.com/4WQ8j8dBrj
— Karen (Mei-kythera) (@Malkythera) August 17, 2016
The fix is only live on the PTR server for now, but anytime the game detects "gg ez" as a chat phrase it automatically pulls a message from a pool of funnier, more sociable responses:
- It's past my bedtime. Please don't tell my mommy.
- I'm trying to be a nicer person. It's hard, but I am trying, guys.
- For glory and honor! Huzzah comrades.
- C'mon, Mom! One more game before you tuck me in. Oops mistell.
- Ah shucks... you guys are the best.
- Mommy says people my age shouldn't suck their thumbs.
- Wishing you all the best.
Other responses have reportedly been seen too, according to a thread currently on NeoGAF and another on the Overwatch sub-reddit. There's supposedly a couple of messages indicating that players have been banned, although I haven't seen that come up as of myself.
It's a nice move by Blizzard that hopefully makes it through to the public arena, even if it will only result in a new meta when it comes to trash talk. It probably won't be particularly effective for that very reason, although for a little while it will at least put a smile on some people's faces.