Blizzard Entertainment, developer of MMORPG World of Warcraft, has demonstrated that it intends to live up to its no-nonsense reputation when it comes to dealing with cheaters by revoking the accounts of a number of subscribers identified as using "speed hacks" to accelerate movement in-game.
Anybody who suspects another player of using the hack, or who wishes to report any other instances of cheating, is encouraged to email email@example.com, and that obviously applies to both the recently released American version of the game and the ongoing European beta test version.
Blizzard has previously deleted Battle.net accounts in response to cheating in its other games, and earlier this year producer Chris Sigaty told Eurogamer that World of Warcraft would be treated no differently. "It's extremely important to the ideals we're going to try and uphold with our community support and live teams [to ban cheaters]," he said. "When they're identified, if there are people that are ruining the experience by cussing and being racist, whatever it is, we'll get rid of them, but also people that are cheating or are going and doing things in the game that we didn't intend."
However Blizzard is willing to acknowledge so-called "grey areas", according to Sigaty. "Stuff will come up that we just don't anticipate or whatever, and we'll just say 'okay, we're going to end that, you're not to blame for doing it, because it was our thing'. So whatever it is - if they find some herb that fetches a ridiculous price of something, I dunno, something really crazy, then that's our [fault], but we'll deal with it and we fully intend to do that across all regions; the idea is to have an environment that is fun for everybody, and certainly griefers and cheaters can ruin that," he said.
World of Warcraft is due to launch in Europe early next year, and pre-order packages - which also provide access to the ongoing European beta - are available from games retailers now.