- Riot Games is taking aim at voice comms abusers in VALORANT through a new reviewing feature
- The company will hold voice records of players who may have been reported for abuse so that a further investigation may be launched
- Any data collected will be stored temporarily and deleted once Riot Games has completed the reviewing process and reached a verdict
Riot Games continues to battle online abuse in its flagship games by introducing a new voice comms recording option to help the company better identify disruptive behavior.
Voice Comms to Be Recorded in Valorant to Help Tackle Abuse
Riot Games has been stepping up its efforts to combat abusive and untoward behavior in its online titles, from Wild Rift to League of Legends, to Teamfight Tactics to now VALORANT. The company will address disruptive behavior in its fantasy shooter game by recording voice comms and manually combing through them to identify wrongdoers.
While Riot Games has traditionally produced games with relaxed in-game atmospheres, where mistakes aren't punished as severely, disruptive behavior has been intensifying in recent years, prompting the game publisher to step up its efforts in counterweighing it.
Moving forward, whenever a player is reported for any breach of the game's ethics in voice chat, reviewers will use a record of the comms to help establish whether the said player was guilty. Should Riot establishes a violation, this will merit a penalty based on the severity of the offense.
While this suggestion is only floated as a VALORANT fix of toxicity, it may soon spread over to other titles, including League of Legends and Wild Rift.
Should You Worry About Your Data?
Storing voice comms data is a new way to address offenses in the game and naturally, it begs the question if this is legal. As things stand, when you submit the information that a player has been abusive or disruptive in a voice comms, that data will be pulled and stored in each separate region for Riot to evaluate.
Once the evaluation is complete, the relevant information will be deleted and the company will proceed with a penalty. In other words, Riot Games is replicating the same model for its chat system and extending it to voice comms. The company is not looking to tap into voice data extensively either, even though it seems to have the legal right to do so, explaining:
“Even though the legal document update gives us the ability to capture voice data, League of Legends, Wild Rift, and Teamfight Tactics currently have no plans to record player voice chat or expand the voice chat capabilities beyond party voice chat. Legends of Runeterra does not have any plans to implement voice chat.”Riot Games
The company reassured that transparency and privacy will be of the highest importance to it. “We will protect it as if it were our own,” explained the company in the release announcing the upcoming change.
The Days of Abusers Are Numbered
Game developers such as Riot Games are usually solely focused on growth and taking enforcing action against abusers has been rather slow. Yet, Riot is bucking the trend by throwing in a lot of resources it hopes would pay off in creating a nicely regulated in-game community that uproots abusers and sets good examples for others.
Essentially, the publisher wants to come up with new ways to enforce regulatory action quickly and reliably so as to prevent abuse and show determination in matters concerning in-game ethics. The voice chat records will provide the reviewers with the evidence they need to establish whether an abuse occurred.
Anyone who participates in VALORANT voice comms and is reported will now be subject to scrutiny by reviewers. The only way to avoid this, it seems, is to avoid using voice chat altogether.
The good news is that abusers would think twice before lashing out against their teammates moving forward, and this is already a small win for the rest of us who want to play the game(s) we enjoy. Riot has been at the forefront of tackling online abuse and the latest move is a great way to reinforce the company's commitment to cleaning up the online gaming space.