Report: Destiny 2 might ban players for using overlay software

Update, 14:24 on October 25: Bungie has posted a notice indicating that the approximately 400 bans issued were all handed out after manual investigation and that "overlay or performance tools" were not the cause. The original story follows below.

Destiny 2 is surely one of the bigger PC game releases this year. This is Bungie's first PC game since the release of Halo 2 about 10 years ago, and the launch has been fairly trouble-free. The game runs well even on modest hardware, and crashes are apparently few and far between. The only major problem we're aware of is a pretty sharp spike to step on, though: players are apparently being banned from Destiny 2 for unclear reasons. The current suspicion among the community is that the banned players were using screen overlay applications.

If the reports are true, the list of applications prompting bans includes popular streaming apps Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) and XSplit, performance tuning kit like Fraps, MSI Afterburner, and EVGA Precision, and even chat overlays like those for Discord and Mumble. Players have also claimed that they were banned over tools like Corsair's Utility Engine, NZXT CAM, and Razer Synapse. Obviously, all of these tools are harmless, but some of them rely on a technique called "code injection" that could make them difficult to differentiate from malicious modifications.

For its part, Bungie had a FAQ page posted way back on September 11 that warned users off the offending apps while playing Destiny 2. The FAQ does not explicitly state that users would be banned, but instead refers to these applications as "incompatible." Whether the applications and the issued game bans are related is still up in the air, but a separate article on Bungie's help site seems to indicate that these bans are permanent without chance of appeal. That would be pretty harsh for gamers just trying to keep an eye on their graphics card's temperature while playing the latest heavily-demanding AAA game.

During the beta tests on PC, players brought up concerns that they were being removed from the beta for using monitoring and capture tools. A post from a Bungie employee (reproduced above) explicitly states that the removals weren't related to the software in question. More recently, David Shaw—Bungie's project lead for the PC version of Destiny 2said on Twitter that he doubts the banned users' claims, calling them "internet BS." His response does seem to again indicate that Bungie didn't intend to hand out bans just for using common software tools, though.

Whatever the root cause for the bans might be, it seems that Bungie's anti-cheat tech could be a little trigger-happy right now. If you're planning of stepping into the shoes of one of Destiny 2's Guardians, we'd strongly recommend closing any apps not directly related to the game, at least until this controversy is cleared. I haven't had any trouble with Steelseries Engine, but maybe I'll close that too just to be safe.

Comments closed
    • BehemothJackal
    • 2 years ago

    Yet another update guys:

    Update: As part of our ban review process, we have identified a group of players who were banned in error. Those players have been unbanned. The bans were not related to the third-party applications listed above. We will continue to review the process we use to ensure a fun and fair game.

    • chuckula
    • 2 years ago

    [quote<]Update, 14:24 on October 25: Bungie has posted a notice indicating that the approximately 400 bans issued were all handed out after manual investigation and that "overlay or performance tools" were not the cause. The original story follows below.[/quote<] It reminds me of the criminal case about the suspect who was arrested for wearing pantyhose [spoiler<]over his head while robbing a bank[/spoiler<]. Totally crazy.

      • Redocbew
      • 2 years ago

      I see your pantyhose(not really), and I raise you lemon juice.

      [url<]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2%80%93Kruger_effect#Original_study[/url<]

      • juzz86
      • 2 years ago

      What would be hilarious is if Bungie’s anti-cheat was actually picking up one of those dodgy old KMS activator/injectors or some other [i<]yaargh[/i<]-esque tool for activating completely non-related software, and they'd just outed an entire league of software pirates.

    • Convert
    • 2 years ago

    I don’t make time for games anymore, sadly, and I had no idea D2 was even being released on the PC until I started seeing all the outrage.

    For some reason though I got sucked in to the issue and did a lot of reading of the complaints and official responses. I’m still on the fence as to who is to blame exactly, but I saw a video by “pewdiepie” who seems well known and he was banned while he was recording his session. He even opens task manager to see if anything was running during the recording. He really comes off like an idiot, but he has a reputation so I can’t really determine his honesty.

    What I gleaned from the video though was that perhaps it’s not the programs that are actively running. It might be that they have a questionable application installed. Pewdiepie asks himself in the video “Is cheat engine running?” I’m thinking maybe they have a zero tolerance for any type of cheat program, even if it’s not used for the game in question.

    I know that many people claim they did a fresh install of Windows and then started playing and still got banned, but I’m not sold on that. I realize there are reasons why someone might be in a situation where they just did a fresh install of windows to play the game, but I would find that pretty uncommon. I’d be more willing to believe people weren’t cheating in the game, but they had cheat software installed. So instead of admitting they had other cheat software installed, because they worried about not having a solid case to make (I still don’t think they should be banned), they made it seem like there was no possible way they were to blame.

      • Voldenuit
      • 2 years ago

      You lost me at PewDiepie.

        • DancinJack
        • 2 years ago

        Innnnnnnndeeeeeeeeeed.

        • Convert
        • 2 years ago

        My point isn’t about PewDiePie.

        It made me wonder that perhaps this issue isn’t about the running applications but that their anit-cheat software is looking for any suspicious software that is installed but not necessarily running.

        I made it pretty clear I don’t really know anything about this guy, and from the few minutes of watching him I considered him a d-bag but thought it better to say “idiot” in my post and questioned his honesty. It still made me think of another possibility as to what’s going on. On a tangent, I really dislike Linus as well, but he seems to have a substantial tech following. Clearly I don’t get why anyone likes these people.

        If you read the outrage online, everyone is completely stuck on it being an overlay issue or overclocking/temp monitoring program.

        Are you upset at PewDiepie for having more useful input on an issue compared what you were capable of? If we have similar distaste for the guy, I can’t imagine what you’re like.

          • Wildchild
          • 2 years ago

          Please just stop.

          • mudcore
          • 2 years ago

          He’s determined PewDiePie is childish and therefore his reaction was to act even more childish than the person whose name triggered him.

          I just wanted to say that this is hilarious to me.

            • DancinJack
            • 2 years ago

            Yes, god forbid people have opinions! What a crime!

            • Convert
            • 2 years ago

            It’s no crime at all. Unless you mention some silly youtuber.

            • RAGEPRO
            • 2 years ago

            Upvoted you because I think people are missing the sarcasm.

            • mudcore
            • 2 years ago

            He wasn’t talking about PewDiePie though ultimately, just as a referencing where he saw the ban happen. I am going to laugh at you if you’re the type of person who has to go “oh gosh he mentioned this person I don’t like so I’m going to put an end to this discussion even though its not about that person at all.”

            • bthylafh
            • 2 years ago

            Don’t be tiresome.

          • DoomGuy64
          • 2 years ago

          PDP is a character Felix plays on youtube. The humor isn’t for everyone, and he isn’t as dumb as people make him out to be. He is just an amateur comedian who uses in-character comedy to bring issues to light.

          One of the more egregious misrepresentations of his character was the WSJ article about him being a Nazi, and it was nothing but blatant clip editing taken out of context, and his original video was about him being taken out of context.
          [url<]https://youtu.be/JLNSiFrS3n4?t=250[/url<] Not to say I'm a fan of the majority of PDP's content, but I have occasionally watched some of his videos, and sometimes have found games to play that I wouldn't have come across otherwise, and he does bring up points that are beneficial to the community at large, especially with his large following. The point isn't whether or not PDP exaggerated his D2 video, or is an expert on the topic, it is that he is bringing the topic to light to millions of his followers who wouldn't have known otherwise. It is benefiting the community to discuss these problems, especially when larger exposure will force Bungie to address the issue. Good for him.

    • Chrispy_
    • 2 years ago

    Edit.

    Mr Dweezil’s link below clears it up; None of the bans were issued by Bungie for the reasons whining players claimed.

    [quote<]If the reports are true, the list of applications prompting bans includes popular streaming apps Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) and XSplit, performance tuning kit like Fraps, MSI Afterburner, and EVGA Precision, and even chat overlays like those for Discord and Mumble. Players have also claimed that they were banned over tools like Corsair's Utility Engine, NZXT CAM, and Razer Synapse.[/quote<] Thankfully the reports are not true, and those that were banned are just lying little ****s, sour that they were caught cheating.

      • designerfx
      • 2 years ago

      Their wording is weird in the article about what they support for streaming ( [url<]https://www.bungie.net/en/Help/Article/46101[/url<] ) "OBS and XSplit The Game Capture mode of applications such as OBS and XSplit is not supported. " "To capture while playing in Windowed Mode (including Borderless Fullscreen): OBS and XSplit Screen Capture mode is supported. OBS and XSplit Window Capture mode is supported." Does something happen in true fullscreen that is...an issue? Not saying it matters significantly, but this just seems odd.

        • auxy
        • 2 years ago

        You can’t use screen or window capture mode while running a fullscreen game. You have to use game capture which supposedly doesn’t work on Destiny (it totally does, you just get banned) (・へ・)

    • MrDweezil
    • 2 years ago

    Bungie’s statement: [url<]https://www.bungie.net/en/News/Article/46426[/url<]

      • morphine
      • 2 years ago

      We were updating our story with that notice just now.

      • juzz86
      • 2 years ago

      +1.

      Further reading from a couple of links deeper:

      [url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Help/Article/11929<]Account Restrictions and Banning Policies[/url<], specifically, [i<]Player Behaviour that can lead to Account Bans or Restrictions[/i<]. [i<]Formatting[/i<]

        • rahulahl
        • 2 years ago

        I read your comment as Destiny counts bad formatting as one of the “Player Behaviour that can lead to Account Bans or Restrictions”. πŸ˜›

          • juzz86
          • 2 years ago

          To be fair mate, their releases around this particular issue are very well-edited, so you may in fact be right! πŸ˜€

    • wingless
    • 2 years ago

    Destiny 2 is about to make enemies with the wrong group of people, the customers aka PCMR.

    • Voldenuit
    • 2 years ago

    Played Dest2 w Discord and msi afterburner last night, have not had any issues …yet (although afterburner was unable to report framerate).

    The game itself is pretty… bad. The shooty-ness is fun, and the game is pretty, but the game design and level design are quite stultefying, and the writing is atrociously, *atrociously* bad.

    If any story ever has the bad guy monologue, “we’re not so different, you and I…”, you know you’re in for a bad time.

      • neverthehero
      • 2 years ago

      I want to say that dialogue is straight from the Skull Face’s mouth from Metal Gear V lol.. I don’t know if this proves or disproves your point.

    • chuckula
    • 2 years ago

    Apparently Destiny 2 is also encouraging RyZen upgrades.

    By crashing on Phenom II systems: [url<]https://venturebeat.com/2017/10/24/destiny-2-doesnt-work-with-old-amd-phenom-ii-cpus/[/url<]

      • RAGEPRO
      • 2 years ago

      Particularly perplexing since the beta did.

      The beta also ran better, at least for meβ€”I was pulling out over 50 FPS in 4K on “Highest”, but the final release struggles to hit 30 in the same circumstances. It runs well in 2560×1440 or 1920×1080, but it’s still troubling.

        • floodo1
        • 2 years ago

        What video card?

          • RAGEPRO
          • 2 years ago

          GeForce GTX 1080 Ti.

      • LostCat
      • 2 years ago

      I think Phenom 2 does that perfectly well by itself.

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