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Warzone shadow ban system being used to harass players for being good at game

The Warzone shadow ban system is oppressing good players (Image via Sportskeeda)
The Warzone shadow ban system is oppressing good players (Image via Sportskeeda)

The Ricochet Anti-Cheat and shadow banning system of Call of Duty Warzone have been sources of constraint among users since the day they were added. Despite being a kernel-level system, the former has already proved ineffective in keeping cheaters from entering the Warzone lobby.

Though Warzone's Ricochet system has been active in the title for quite some time, the steady presence of gamers using cheat applications in match lobbies attests to the fact that Activision seriously needs to upgrade its anti-cheat system.

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However, the shadow ban system has recently been a source of headache among experts. It temporarily prevents players from entering lobbies if others have reported them multiple times within a quick interval.

This is supposed to be a support system for the Ricochet Anti-Cheat, but the prevelence of abuse of this system is becoming more apparent daily.

This method of temporarily banning users has been a source of a major headache among expert gamers. It has been observed that those who are good at the game tend to get reported by salty opponents or because their gameplay skills are mistaken for cheats.

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This leads to players being shadow banned and having to wait for around two weeks before Activision manually reviews their gameplay and unbans their account if nothing suspicious is found. The steady abuse of the shadow ban system is definitely on the rise in Warzone.


Abuse of shadow ban system becoming more prevalent in Call of Duty Warzone

A Reddit user recently wrote about the shadow ban on his Call of Duty Warzone account while he was playing in the Plunder mode.

The Reddit user has been playing Warzone for multiple seasons and has a very high prestige level. He is also a grinder and has obtained multiple rare camos for weapons after putting in lots of effort.

He was in a Plunder lobby and was wracking up a good kill count when his game froze, and he was kicked out of the game.

After this, whenever he searched for a new match, his ping showed >350ms; eventually, the gamer was pushed into a lobby filled to the brim with hackers. These are the definitive signs of being shadow banned, and the response to his ticket on Activision's website confirmed the fact.

This is a classic example of a good player being shadow-banned because he was reported multiple times after wracking up a good kill count in the Plunder match.


Another Redditor has given a simplified yet apt description of the current shadow ban scenario in Call of Duty Warzonẹ. He stated that more game time leads to more kills and more people falsely reporting good players.

As a final result, the account of the good player gets an automated shadow ban, and they have to wait for the manual review to lift it.


Another user shared facing a similar situation and waiting for ten days before the ban was lifted. This scenario is quite prevalent nowadays, and even well-known streamers regularly face this issue.


The manual review process cannot be expedited. As such, users will have to stay away from the game for ten to 14 days or open a new account if they wish to play during the review period.


This situation is becoming very prevalent among veteran players, and the tendency of gamers rage-reporting their opponents is leading to the abuse of the shadow ban system.


A player has to spend lots of hours to get the prestige rank of 1000. Such an account will have numerous rare unlocks that the user has spent countless hours grinding.

If such an account gets banned due to false accusations, then the anguish of its owner will be beyond measure.


The shadow ban system in Call of Duty Warzone is slowly reaching the level of abuse. If Activision is not efficient in fixing this issue, the title might see a sharp drop in its veteran gamer base due to frustrations at shadow bans.

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Edited by Ravi Iyer
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