Valve Trolls Dota 2 Cheaters By Literally Gifting Them Bans

The fans have dubbed it one of the funniest troll attempts by developers.

Story Highlights

  • As per many user reports recently, Dota 2 exploiters are getting banned for opening gift boxes given by Valve.
  • Dota 2 Twitch streamer Masondota2 was also banned by the same trick since he boosted his behavior score.
  • Valve vaguely teased using such a strategy in an official blog post, but no one expected it to be literal.

Valve has recently been taking strict action against cheaters hiding in the Dota 2 community, from typical gamers to professional players alike. In the latest Frostivus 2023 update, the devs have whipped up an ingenious way to deal with the cheaters. The game is delivering malicious gifts to Smurf accounts that, once opened, ban the players’ accounts for good. The popular Twitch streamer Masondota2 has already met a similar ill fate.

YouTube video

Mason was seemingly banned for partaking in breaking the official Dota 2 guidelines. He received a Frostivus gift with beautiful wrapping, just like many other unlucky players. Once opened, the gift turned out to be a “highly toxic lump of coal,” with the dreadful description reading: “Your dota account has been permanently banned for Smurfing, or other violations of the Steam Terms of Service.” 

The reason for the banhammer was quite straightforward. He admitted to boosting his behavior score in the live stream, which is the likely culprit for the surprise. The streamer soon took to the official Dota 2 subreddit to explain his side of the story. He clarified that he has never done anything else that breaks Valve’s Terms of Services and said he regrets the recent choices. Mason is asking for another chance from Valve. 

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Many others have fallen victim to the same trolling attempt in Dota 2. Forums like 4chan and Reddit are having discussions regarding the ban and its ethicality as banned users lament their choices. The players who were just associated with Smurf accounts ended up with a warning for now.

Valve recently teased using this strategy against exploiters while congratulating the MOBA fans for the Frostivus update in a blog post. It vaguely remarked that Smurf accounts would receive a lump of coal, initially confusing players in the process. The post also mentioned that the devs have already banned tens of thousands of Smurf accounts today.

As we’ve said before, smurfing (and other negative behavior) makes matches worse, and we want to make sure your matches are as good as possible as we head into the new year. So we’d like to wish everyone a Happy Frostivus Update! Except smurf accounts, who we assume will not enjoy the update as they choke on their richly-deserved coal-flavored just desserts.”

Those on the Valve’s naughty list are still getting banned, but other players have celebrated the occasion. The devs have been working hard to rid Dota 2 of bad actors after the cheating situation got extremely worse a few years back. It recently banned 90,000 Smurf accounts in another campaign. Dota 2 also saw the slashing of 40,000 other accounts earlier this year who were using third-party cheats.

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Shameer Sarfaraz is a Senior News Writer on eXputer who loves to keep up with the gaming and entertainment industries devoutly. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science and several years of experience reporting on games. Besides his passion for breaking news stories, Shahmeer loves spending his leisure time farming away in Stardew Valley. VGC, IGN, GameSpot, Game Rant, TheGamer, GamingBolt, The Verge, NME, Metro, Dot Esports, GameByte, Kotaku Australia, PC Gamer, and more have cited his articles.

Experience: 4+ Years || Education: Bachelor in Computer Science.

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