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    Blizzard has posted details about the Blood Thief exploit and the hotfix that has changed some game mechanics to prevent it happening again. Blood Thief Exploit Hotfix Details:

    While this issue is now resolved, we know a lot of players have questions about what happened and how we responded, so we wanted to take some time to discuss a few of the details with you here.

    Following the launch of patch 2.2.0, players discovered an exploit that caused Blood Thief goblins to drop a larger number of Blood Shards than intended. The exploit could only occur in Greater Rifts when in a multiplayer group and required a specific sequence of steps to activate.

    As soon as we were able to able to verify the exploit and identify its underlying cause, we immediately began working on a hotfix for PC. The hotfix was deployed in all gameplay regions on April 16, which made the following changes to the game:

    In order be eligible for experience or loot from any monster (including Treasure Goblins), you must do damage to it or be in the same area when it is killed

  • If you are in a Greater Rift, you are no longer eligible for any experience or loot gained by party members outside of the rift
  • For console, this particular change cannot be implemented via hotfix, so we’ve temporarily disabled all Blood Thief goblin spawns on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One until further notice (pending a future patch).
  • From there, taking the complexity and impact of the exploit into consideration, we also elected to action accounts on a case-by-case basis. In general, one of three things occurred:

  • Accounts which were found to have both used the exploit excessively and publicly promoted its use were permanently banned.
  • Accounts which were found to have used the exploit excessively, but did not publicly promote it, were rolled back and their associated heroes removed from active Leaderboards (both Seasonal and non-Seasonal).
  • Accounts which were found to have used the exploit to a limited degree (or quickly stopped once realizing the scope of what was happening) were effectively pardoned. We understand these situations can inspire a certain level of curiosity and that it may not always be immediately clear if you’re undermining intended game mechanics. Mistakes happen, but we hope this leniency won’t be taken for granted in the future.
  • All in all, this incident has shown us that the vast majority of players, upon encountering an in-game exploit, will not only put sportsmanship and fair play above personal gain, but will also work to bring the matter to our attention quickly via channels like [email protected], our online webform and ticket system, and these very forums. (We even received a few Twitter DMs, Skype messages, and personal emails too!) So, on behalf of the development team, I just want to say thank you to those of you who took the time to notify us, as well as apologize for any inconvenience caused a result.

    As noted in our original post, maintaining an enjoyable and equitable play experience is very important to us, and we’re going to continue to monitor the game as well as take steps to prevent exploits like this from happening again.

    That reaction; banning the biggest exploiters/publicizers, rolling back abusers, and sparring experimenters, matches pretty well with the community consensus as expressed in our vote/survey results. As I argued on the last podcast, I’d still like to see a lot more transparency, with names and dates and such, but both guests disagreed, and it’s an irrelevant debate since Blizzard has made clear that they’re not going to “name and shame.”

    So what do you guys think, now that this issue seems to have been resolved?

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