Toxic Overwatch Players
I have been playing Overwatch for over a year. As everyone here has stated, the animated violence of this game is not bad at all. Much better than other games in this genre. There is one massive hole that I'm not seeing here that parents should be made aware of. The ESRB states that this game is rated "Teen" (http://www.esrb.org/ratings/Synopsis.aspx?Certificate=34210&Title=Overwatch). However, if you read a bit deeper you see "Online Interactions Not Rated by the ESRB". For parents that don't know, this game is ONLY online. I.e. they can't play it without other human players. Since this is an online game and ESRB does not rate online interactions one might assume that "this is a good game for my teen".
In short, some players in this game very toxic and your teen WILL be exposed to this. What do I mean by toxic? First off, the language. If any one character in the game said some of what these people say this would get smacked with an "M" (in some cases, worse). Some say that toxic players say things like "too ez" after winning a game, that is not what I'm talking about at all. Those people are just poor sports. Toxic players are much, much worse...
Second, insults and personal attacks are very common. The anonymity of the game (as with the web) brings out the worst in people.
I'd like to close with a few things:
* The toxic players are in every online game, even games like Minecraft. If your child plays online they are exposed to this.
* Blizzard has done some things that make it so blocking players doesn't work (no, you can't effectively block these toxic players because people were blocking "good" players). This is a choice Blizzard made. There is a "block player" command but I haven't seen it work, I still end up playing with people I've blocked...
* There is a reporting feature in Overwatch. I'll leave it up to the reader to do a Google search to determine how effective reporting this to Blizzard is.
* You can do some muting (voice and text). It has been my experience that this is near useless, especially in Competition where it is expected you have a mic (team communication is very important in this game). This is where most of the Toxic players end up. I don't play Competitive matches anymore. You are guaranteed a toxic player (very likely more than one; like on the school yard they "gang up and feed off each other").
I haven’t heard of anyone being banned from Overwatch for anything other than game modification (cheating). Blizzard knows if cheaters infest the game that people will leave. Either you cheat or you lose. To be clear, I can understand Blizzard’s position; a ban is major. Someone won’t be able to play the game anymore after buying it. But, perhaps, the solution isn’t to just throw up your corporate hands and say “well, there is nothing we can do” or “this is in every game so we won’t do anything”. More monitoring on the part of Blizzard is necessary.
I just wanted others to know that ESRB and the other statements here are correct but missing (IMHO) a very vital component which is the online play. Remember, this isn't just Overwatch (the only online game I play, likely the last). I’m sure all online games are like this but I would hope that other companies who support these games do a better job than Blizzard at dealing with these players.
Want some entertainment? Google "youtube overwatch toxic player" and watch a few. Then realize that those are the ones that got recorded, most don’t.
I would like to say, i went in to the blizzard control panel and blocked my sons (and my own) voice. I have tested for the last hour and I haven't heard a peep. While i've blocked players that are toxic in text chat, it is nowhere near as bad now that I have made it so that audio is completely blocked. It is a fun game, your kids will like it. You, as a parent, need to block this however.