The announcement came just days after Blizzard confirmed that both Dragonflight and Wrath of the Lich King Classic will have big updates in January. The Seeds of Renewal content update for Dragonflight will launch on January 16. The update will see both the story of the expansion conclude, and the Worgen will reclaim Gilneas after it was ravaged by the Cataclysm. Seeds of Renewal will also bring some new customization options for the Trolls and the Draenei and new lore-friendly content including Follower Dungeons and the Azerothian Archives. Dragonriding in older continents such as Kalimdor will also be included in the update, which will give WoW players a much faster method of transport. On the Classic side, the Ruby Sanctum raid will launch on January 11, which will serve as a prelude to Cataclysm Classic.
But, Blizzard revealed that some players will not be able to experience the upcoming content. In a World of Warcraft forum post, Blizzard community manager Bornakk reported that 270,970 WoW players were banned in December 2023 for cheating and exploitation, which are both violations of the game's terms of service. The punishments ranged from six-month suspensions to permanent bans. Starting in June 2023, Blizzard began a series of monthly reports of the number of WoW accounts that were terminated within a given span. With a total of 127,014 bans in June 2023, the number continued to rise steadily. However, it is not clear if the bans cover a specific game version, such as Season of Discovery, or if the number encompasses all game modes.
World of Warcraft Bans By the Numbers
December 2023: 270,970
November 2023: 197,455
October 2023: 203,026
September 2023: 136,014
August 2023: 145,566
July 2023: 116,921
June 2023: 127,014
In response to the forum post, some World of Warcraft players expressed a mix of relief and concern about the tally. While some were glad that the company was taking a stand against cheating, some questioned which game modes the total covered. A few WoW players claimed that they were caught in the December ban wave and were unsuccessful in their appeal attempts at the time of writing.
While other games such as Dota 2 have creative ways of administering bans, World of Warcraft's reports are a welcome sight. Only time will tell if the company will respond to players' requests for clarification on the numbers.
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