Overwatch in CSGO: The Judge and The Jury
Overwatch is a feature introduced in CSGO as an in-game review system. This unique feature marked the beginning of allowing experienced and qualified players of the CSGO community to scrutinize and judge certain instances of malicious gameplays presented to them in the form of convenient bite-sized replays.
In the game, blatant cheats using software/bots/scripts usually result in a Valve-Anti Cheat hammer being swung above the cheater’s fate, where they permanently face consequences due to their unappreciable actions. But unfortunately, for CSGO, apart from software-based cheats, there also happens to be players who buy CSGO PRIME accounts, just to ruin pubs and matches by griefing own teammates, sporting disruptive gameplay and making the overall experience extremely painful to bear. This huge availability of CSGO smurf accounts online causes players to repetitively purchase and perform such actions in their newly bought CSGO account, without having to have put their own original accounts in line. With all that said, such CSGO smurf account purchasers are often left unaccounted for, for their actions in game. Here, the role of the Overwatch feature comes into play.
In the 10-minute clip taken out of 8 random rounds of the accused’s last few played matches, the entrusted player, also the jury here, is tasked to determine if the person under the limelight indeed is guilty. Now, what usually is easily evadable under the scrutiny of VAC, such as toggling or using subtle scirpts or griefing itself, overwatch allows the judgement to have a “human touch” and lets people decide whether the player under question is truly guilty or not, leaving them with either “Insufficient Evidence” or “Evident beyond Reasonable Doubt”. This is of course not done by one single individual per case, but an overall verdict is generated through several feedbacks from the community through overwatch, where the accused is promptly delivered a proper punishment, that too directed via human-examination, for his ill-doings. Buying CSGO accounts will always be a part of the community and the culture, as it doesn’t always promote the behavior that is targeted by Overwatch and VAC. But it was made certain the latter was simply not sufficient enough for cases that required human attention, and of course VALVE as a company will find it tremendously and practically exhausting to have a dedicated team for that purpose. As thousands browse through CSGO smurf accounts every day, purchasing one or more at once and among them are people who’re buying CSGO accounts to smurf, or to “troll” and turn out to be an obstruction in gameplay, along with normal cheat users.
As said, this ecosystem of different types of players present in CSGO is going to continue as long as the game has its run, as it’s embedded to the very roots of the community surrounding the game. As a result, it was quite the ingenious move from Valve Corp.’s end to allow the community itself to act as both the judge and the jury, where their own software faces its shortcomings.