Here's how Overwatch's leave game penalty works

Don't MEKA habit of it.

If you leave too many Overwatch games while they're in progress you will incur a 75 per cent XP penalty. Blizzard explained how the system works on the Overwatch forum.

You're considered a 'leaver' if you leave a game after the 'Assemble Your Team' phase and before the match ends. But you are not considered a leaver if you exit before the 'Assemble Your Team' phase is over, or after you see the 'Victory' or 'Defeat' words across the screen.

Your 'leaver' ratio is based on your 20 most recent games, and if it falls too low, you will be warned in the bottom-left of your screen. If you continue to leave games after the warning, you will incur the 75 per cent XP penalty.

What if you disconnect? Depends which side is to blame. If your computer disconnects from the server, it counts as you leaving the game, whereas if the server drops connection, it doesn't count.

Unfortunately, leaving a game because you've accepted a group invite also counts towards your negative 'leaver' score. "We've definitely seen posts that this process (i.e. the fact that when you join a group, you will be automatically removed from your current game) may not always feel great," wrote Blizzard community manager Lylirra, "and that's certainly feedback for us to consider.

"As a quick reminder," Lylirra added, "leaving a couple games in a row won't cause you to be penalised in any way. We understand that there are circumstances, either in or outside of your control, that may necessitate you needing to step away from a game before it ends. It's only if you repeatedly leave games in succession, to the point where it could be considered a habitual behaviour, that you will be penalised."

Overwatch is up and running and doing very well for itself, with more than 7 million players. Our Overwatch review called it Essential.

More content for the game is just around the corner, with Competitive mode earmarked for a late-June arrival, and possible new character Sombra heavily hinted at by Jeff Kaplan in our recent Overwatch interview.

If you need any help, or tips, then our Overwatch guide covers an awful lot.

For all the latest Overwatch hero, map and gameplay guides, visit our sister site MetaBomb

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About the author

Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer  |  Clert

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.


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