Technoculture, Art and Games (TAG) is an interdisciplinary centre for research/ creation in game studies and design, digital culture and interactive art

Research & Creation

One Tricks, Hero Picks, and Player Politics: Highlighting the Casual-Competitive Divide in the Overwatch Forums

Courtney Blamey

This chapter investigates the developer’s moderation of Overwatch by analyzing the game’s official Blizzard forum discussions (2016–2019). The moderation put in place by Blizzard allows players to address, for instance, toxicity by reporting or avoiding players, while also rewarding positive play experiences. By analyzing the player discourse around these moderation systems, the data gathered yields a rift between casual and competitive players, resulting in conflicts in what players might expect and want from their play experiences. I conclude that varying expectations and standards of play feed into a community’s conflicts alongside the failure of moderation in curtailing unwanted behaviors.

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Articles and Book Chapters