Fear has stopped me from playing Dota 2 for several months now.

That fear has nothing to do with the game but rather how other players will treat me after a long absence and little to no understanding of the current metagame.

Call me a wuss but I don’t think anybody likes being told how much they suck at a game.

That fear has been quelled somewhat by news of a new ban system Valve is introducing in version 7.08 of the game.

As of right now toxic players won’t only receive a slap on the wrist but a six month matchmaking ban.

Valve writes in the patch notes:

“As part of this update, we are now automatically issuing 6 month matchmaking bans for players that show an extreme frequency of negative behaviour.”

This negative behavior includes abandoning games, player abuse and intentional feeding (purposefully letting the enemy kill you with the intent of ruining the game).

This is just one of several quality-of-life updates that the game is getting and you can view them all – including hero updates – over on the Dota blog.

While this news is great for folks like me that have been hesitant to dip their toes back into the game, its impact remains to be seen.

Hopefully the idea of being banned for six months puts a stop to the toxicity in what was once my favourite game.

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.