Update About Banned Players, Blizzard Community AMA & More!

 

 

 

A little backstory about the recent Blizzard Banning Affair (...)

A Hearthstone player recently made a Reddit post discussing the fact that he had been banned for playing SN1P-SN4P Warlock in Wild Mode.

Why would he be banned for playing a normal deck in ranked mode, you may ask?

The answer is simple: there is third party party software available that is removing the animations in Hearthstone from the game. This means that players can play cards like Sn1p-Sn4p many times faster in a turn (around 50-70 in some cases). This, of course, is entirely illegal in the eyes of Blizzard's Terms of Service and therefore can trigger an automatic ban.

His post was highly upvoted, with approximately 14k votes (at a recent count). He claims that he has never used these illegal third party party programs, but he still received a swift ban from Blizzard.

However...

Blizzard admits their banning system is imperfect and are now reversing many bans

 

Quote from blizzard

Hi all,

I have an update for everyone on the SN1P-SN4P conversation that started up over the weekend.

WHAT HAPPENED:
This week we spent time reading this thread (https://www.reddit.com/r/hearthstone/comments/d4tnb4/time_to_say_goodbye/) and gathering all the details on the situation. For some added context, all of this hinges on a situation where, under some circumstances, a player can end up with a significant amount of extra time on their turn - even over a minute.

SN1P-SN4P is a card that relates to this behavior that we've had a close eye on, as we've noted that it has also been used by cheaters, playing an impossible number of cards in a single turn. Under normal circumstances, a real human player can only play a small number of cards in a turn - it's just a limit of how fast a human can perform those actions. However, when you mix this with the extended time situation, a player could legitimately play far more cards than usual if they've been given additional time in a turn. We recently banned a number of accounts that had been marked as playing an impossible (or so we thought) number of cards in a single turn. We now know that some of these turns were possible under normal play because the turn had been given so much added time.

WHAT WE'RE DOING:
Given the interaction with the extended time issue described above, we are rolling back a large quantity of these bans. We're also updating the procedures that led to these bans to ensure they only catch cheaters.
 

Frequently Asked Questions on the topic of the Ban Repeals

Q: Can you explain how the appeals process seemingly just rubber-stamped the incorrect ban with no further avenue for appeal other than social media and what, if any, changes Blizzard is making to ensure that the appeals process works in the future for any erroneous bans that may arise from new issues that may be unrelated to the current SN1P-SN4P controversy?

A: Totally fair question. As a quick comment on the appeals process, it wasn't necessarily a rubber-stamp. At the time, based on the information we had, the bans looked correct. So upon appeal, it still looked correct. It was only after fully understanding the interaction with extra time that we were able to re-evaluate and make the call that our methodology wasn't 100% on the mark. All of this isn't to say this is OK, but rather to explain why it happened the way it did. Combatting cheating is tough, but we never want to affect legitimate players in this way.


The actual AMA part

[S] There’s a ton of unexplored things they can do as a Solo Adventure content and they will keep messing with it. (Editor thoughts: Possible something else than dungeon runs for the next Solo Adventure highly possible.)

[S] Iksar, the Lead Card Designer for Hearthstone responded to a balance proposal tweet from Bunnyhoppor (mentioning Northshire Cleric) with a response: "What would you do?" (Editor thoughts: We should probably expect some minor nerfs for Priest class in the "near" future.)

[S] Alchemist's Stone is probably one of the best passive effects. They tried nerfing it a few ways, but it ended up losing so much of it's fun factor so they just changed its offering rate.

[S] Each Chapter of Tombs of Terror will come with their own unique bosses and we will only fight those bosses until we beat that chapter. Replaying a chapter you completed, the pool of bosses will contain bosses from all the chapters you've beaten.

  

Editor notes: If you want to check out the source yourself, feel free to click on the "S" word for a specific part.


Tombs of Terror Strategy Guide

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