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Ubisoft's plans to tackle toxicity in Rainbow Six: Siege

Permanent bans, mute text chat, chat filtering and team kill detection all in the works

Ubisoft is the latest major game firm to ramp up its efforts to crackdown on negative behaviour in its multiplayer games.

A blog post on the Rainbow Six: Siege website details the company's current plans to deal with the toxicity spreading through the community.

A mix of short-term changes and long-term goals are listed, with Ubisoft ultimately hoping to "track negative player behaviour, manage those that behave poorly, and eventually implement features that will encourage players to improve their behaviour."

Most immediately, the publisher reiterated that it is currently tracking any "racial and homophobic slurs" used by individual players, issuing bans on those users depending on the severity.

Players who repeatedly use such terms face bans of two, seven or fifteen days, with permanent blocks used against the most extreme offenders. Ubisoft stresses that this is not a strict progression system, adding: "Particularly egregious offenders can be permananetly banned without a warning [ban] being applied beforehand."

During the course of Rainbow Six: Siege's third-year second season, the publisher hopes to address the increasingly common issue of intentional team killing. Ubisoft aims to track long-term offenders that slip through the current detection system and use this to improve its methods.

By the end of season three, Ubisoft hopes to have implemented the ability for players to mute text and/or voice chat from individual users that offend them. The Rainbow Six team is also wroking on an automated system to censor text chat, which in turn will help identify users who repeatedly send offensive messages.

"These short-term changes will begin to address toxicity, but we do not plan to stop there," the team wrote. "We are serious about tackling the issues surrounding the potential for a negative player experience, and we will share any further changes with you prior to their implementation."

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Latest comments (1)

Danny Smith Content Creator, Flowmotion Entertainment IncA month ago
Honestly this has been a long time coming. The game is successful enough for it to not be an urgent issue but it must be effecting new player retention at this point. The team killing issue in particular is perhaps the worst 'first taste' experience i have seen in nearly 30 years of playing multiplayer games. If someone is racist or sexist in text or voice chat? thats rude. Thats a case of 'what an asshole i will report him and hope i dont run into them again' and you get on with the match. It sucks but it can only effect your impression of certain users and not the game.

The team killing however is a massive problem. I have experienced at least a dozen people i know pick up the game hearing about its "tacticool" gameplay being a team based, methodical alternative to modern fast paced online shooters. They try their first random matches and have a team mate turn and kill them and end the match. Perhaps its because "you took the character i wanted", simple griefing or worst of all "burner accounts" by youtubers 'farming reactions' for "epic rage montage" videos for ad revenue. If one video takes a day to make and makes in ad revenue the cost of the 'starter account' you just had banned a dozen times over its easy money.

Now those people i know all had the same reaction: "i tried it, every match ended in seconds with team killing, i'm never touching that game again" and if you look on sites like the games official reddit the unanimous reaction is "yeah it sucks but if you can find a full team for a premade match the game is great but random matchmaking is literally not worth touching anymore" and for the players who dont have a dedicated team interested in the swat style gameplay that means your purchase is now just a griefing simulator. You threw that money away on what now appears to be a poisoned brand.

Question is has Ubisoft noticed a significant new player retention issue at this point? the closest comparison i can think of them having would be their issue with The Dark Zone in The Division dealing with campers at entrances but even that doesn't show up till hours into the PVE experience.
Rainbow Six Siege has no PVE single player. It is team based with friendly fire only. Right now when its a complete dud with randos how can they get new players to join in with what appears to be a userbase of assholes without turning team killing off altogether and reducing part of the unique 'bullets go through walls, everyone is cautious' gameplay in favour of making it more like Halo's fightfight or something instead?
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