Code of Conduct



The guidelines and rules listed below outline the bulk of prohibited behavior while using any of Piranha Games services, including our discussion forums and the MechWarrior Online game itself. The guidelines in this Code of Conduct apply to every facet of our services.

While every effort has been made to make this Code of Conduct as clear and as detailed as possible, game masters and forum moderators have full discretion to address any behavior they feel is inappropriate or which may violate the spirit of the Code of Conduct in any capacity.

We reserve the right to update or change the content of this Code of Conduct at any time. Such changes will typically prompt an updated agreement window when launching the standalone MechWarrior Online client.

In cases of forum engagement, or in the use of other PGI services where an updated agreement window is not applicable or present, such as when running MWO through Steam, participation in any PGI services is contingent upon a tacit agreement to abide by the Code of Conduct regardless of any change in its status or content since your last reading.

Not being aware of the Code of Conduct is not an acceptable excuse for violating it.

Disruptive or abusive behavior that negatively affects other player's experiences or the service itself is strictly forbidden under the Terms of Use.

Depending on their severity, violations of any aspect of the Code of Conduct can result in various forms of moderation actions, such as warnings, suspensions, or permanent banishment from any or all Piranha Games services. Piranha Games reserves the right to suspend your access to any of our services at any time and for any duration for reasons that include, but are not necessarily limited to, the specific guidelines listed in this Code of Conduct.

We reserve the right to evaluate each incident on a case by case basis. The actions we take may be more lenient or more severe than any consequences expressly listed for each category of this Code of Conduct, if such consequences are listed. All cases are subject to the evaluation and decision of Support and moderation services.

We want MechWarrior Online to be a fun and safe environment for all players. While playing MechWarrior Online or participating in our various services, you will encounter thousands of other players who may share different experiences and opinions, and who may come from vastly different backgrounds. While certain language, images, and content may not be offensive to you, consider that those items may have entirely different connotations or effects on someone else.

ABUSE OR MISUSE OF REPORTING SYSTEMS



Players must not abuse or misuse any report system, whether in-game, on the forums, or in any other PGI services. Falsely reporting players for conduct that does not violate the letter or spirit of the Code of Conduct may incur moderation actions.

ACCOUNT SHARING



General Code of Conduct Violations When Sharing Accounts

As outlined in the Terms of Use, players are responsible for any and all activities that occur under their accounts. Sharing access to your account with a friend or player who then violates any aspect of the Code of Conduct under that account will lead to the same consequences for the account as if the account owner had personally performed the violation. There are no exceptions to this.
By engaging in account sharing the account owner is making a conscious decision to accept all risks and responsibilities for any incidences that might result from sharing that account.

Account Sharing to ‘game’ a Leaderboard, event, or tournament (official or otherwise)

Sharing an account to allow another player to contribute to your standing in a Leaderboard, tournament, or other event is considered cheating, and will result in severe moderation actions being taken against the accounts in question.

Account Sharing with no other Code of Conduct Violations

In cases where no other violations of the CoC have occurred (beyond the initial act of account sharing), the moderation policy becomes a little more nuanced.

We would prefer that you not share your account at all due to of the potential for abuse and the risks associated with sharing the account, but we are unlikely to penalize you in situations where the sharing of the account was deemed by us to be harmless or without significant consequence, and so long as no additional violations of the Code of Conduct occurred.

When no additional violations of the CoC are involved, we do still reserve the right to make a judgement call based on the specific circumstances of that case.

In other words, the act of account sharing in and of itself, when it does not involve any other violations of the CoC, is not currently treated with a high degree of severity.

However, we again need to stress that by engaging in account sharing the account owner is making a conscious decision to accept any risks and responsibilities for any incidences that might result from sharing that account.

ACCOUNT TRADING AND SELLING



The trading or selling of MechWarrior Online accounts is forbidden.

This includes both advertising your account for sale or trade or advertising that you are looking for an account to purchase.

If a player is found to have participated in such actions, their MWO account and their access to PGI services will be permanently suspended.

ADVERTISING



Players must not engage in the advertising of any third-party content that is not beneficial and not related to MWO or PGI services or any related businesses, organizations, or websites.

ALTERNATE ACCOUNT



Under typical circumstances running alternate accounts is not prohibited, unless doing so violates a specific provision of this Code of Conduct. We understand that players may want to run accounts split between Clan and Inner Sphere, or operate a ‘new user’ account alongside their main account.

Be aware that severe violations of the Code of Conduct may result in moderation actions being enforced across all confirmed alternate accounts.

APPEAL PROCESS



If you feel an act of moderation is not commensurate with the violation, or if you want to appeal the terms of a moderation action, please forward all appeals to moderation@mwomercs.com. Depending on the nature of the infraction and your appeal, the case may be escalated for further review.

While appeals to PGI support services are acceptable, arguing with or personally attacking volunteer moderation staff as a result of their duties is not. Doing so may only exacerbate the issue and incur escalated moderation actions.

BILLING CHARGEBACKS & DISPUTES



Forcing a chargeback for a purchased item will result in an automatic suspension of that account. Upon receiving notification of a chargeback Support services will contact the e-mail associated with the account, after the account has been suspended, to establish a dialog between the account holder and support services in an effort to determine the nature of the chargeback. In the event that the purchased content has been consumed or modified, reinstatement of the account may require a full reimbursement to PGI billing services of the total transaction amount that has been charged back, potentially including any additional fees incurred by our billing services as a result of the original chargeback.

Before resorting to a forced chargeback for purchased content we ask that you please instead contact Billing Support services to establish a dialog and to help ensure that we can work together to resolve any potential issues.

CIRCUMVENTING OR DISRUPTING MODERATION



Unless expressly permitted in the specific moderation action notification, players who have been suspended, banned, or otherwise moderated (when applicable) are not permitted to:

  • Create, use, or post under another account.
  • Have someone post or publicly argue on your behalf (see ‘Discussing Disciplinary Actions’ section).

Engaging in any of the following actions while using PGI services is forbidden:

  • Publicly posting or sending communications to discuss general moderation rules and guidelines.
  • Raising false alarms in a Reporting system, or otherwise abusing the spirit or letter of the Code of Conduct when using a Reporting system.
  • Misleading moderation or support staff with false or inaccurate reports.

DISCUSSING DISCIPLINARY ACTIONS



Discussing moderation or other disciplinary actions taken against yourself or other players, whether in-game or on the forums, is forbidden.

EXTREME CONTENT / INAPPROPRIATE LANGUAGE / ILLICIT ACTIVITIES



Engaging in any of the following actions while using PGI services is forbidden:

  • Posting or referring to sexual and/or violent actions.
  • Posting or referring to pornography.
  • Posting or referring to reproductive organs, waste organs, or inappropriate bodily functions.
  • Circumventing a word filter.
  • Using divisive or otherwise offensive language.
  • Referencing illicit drugs or activities.
  • Reference to performing or planning illegal activities.
  • Phishing personal information of other players.
  • Providing links or instructions for pirated or illegal materials.
  • Discussing pirated or illegal materials.

GRIEFING



Engaging in any of the following actions while using PGI services is forbidden:

  • Willfully or repeatedly destroying teammates.
  • Willfully or repeatedly damaging your teammates.
  • Willfully or repeatedly self-destructing one’s ‘Mech, either by overheating, going out-of-bounds, or committing some other form of suicide or intending to cause abnormally early death.
  • Willfully or repeatedly disconnecting from a match.
  • Willfully or repeatedly blocking teammate ‘Mechs or weapon trajectories.
  • Willfully or repeatedly assisting the enemy.
  • Taunting, baiting, or otherwise encouraging players to violate the Code of Conduct.

HACKING / CHEATING / EXPLOITING



The following actions are strictly forbidden:

• Modifying any game client files aside from those expressly listed below:

- User.cfg
- Game.cfg
- Attributes.xml
- Actionmaps.xml
- Profile.xml
- Weapongroups.xml
- Changing default save/profile/install locations

  • ‘Injecting’ third-party files that may not directly modify game files.
  • Using a Bot application to carry out gameplay actions without user participation.
  • Engaging in the use of hacks, scripts, or cheats.
  • Discussing the use of hacks, scripts, or cheats.
  • Misrepresenting your use of hacks, scripts, or cheats.
  • Accusing other players of using hacks, scripts, or cheats.
  • Disrupting or threatening the integrity, operation, or security of services.
  • Attempting to defraud the MC, C-Bill, or XP systems.
  • Attempting to misrepresent a situation or defraud Support services.
  • Showing unreleased content that has not already been officially posted or approved.
  • Displaying or discussing the results of altering or tampering with game client files.
  • Displaying or discussing the results of injecting third-party files.
  • Sharing any data not available through normal gameplay or official public release.
  • Exploiting game bugs or mechanics to gain any unfair advantages or benefits, either for yourself, your teammates, or players on the opposing team.
  • Exploiting or manipulating the matchmaking system.

Claiming to use any such exploits, modifications, or cheats for ‘testing’ purposes is not an acceptable excuse. Claiming that the violations took place on your account as a result of another player gaining or being provided access to your account is not an acceptable excuse.

HARASSMENT / DEFAMATION / INSULTS / TOXICITY



Engaging in any of the following actions while using any PGI services is forbidden:

  • Engaging in intimidation tactics or aggravation of other individuals or groups of individuals.
  • Referring insultingly to or personally attacking other individuals based on gender, race, religion, age, nation, or any other characteristic or alignment regarding a group of individuals.
  • Alluding to symbols or phrases of racial, ethnic, national, political, or religious hatred.
  • Using slurs or phrases of a sensitive or potentially offensive nature.
  • Impersonating another individual.
  • Naming and shaming the alleged misconduct of another individual, including but not limited to accusations of cheating or exploiting.
  • Misrepresenting the statements of others.
  • Encouraging negative behavior toward other individuals, genders, races, religions, nations, or other groups of individuals.

Consistent and repetitive unsportsmanlike conduct may also be subject to moderation action if the behavior is determined to contribute toward a general pattern of toxicity.
Responding to another player who has violated the Code of Conduct is not an acceptable excuse for violating the Code of Conduct yourself.

INAPPROPRIATE PILOT NAMES



Names that have been deemed inappropriate are subject to change by Support services to a generic identifier (MechWarrior ####). Upon changing an inappropriate name Support services will contact the player in question and request three alternative pilot names to use instead.

MODIFYING THE USER.CFG FILE



By modifying the user.cfg file players may be able to tweak settings not directly available to the player using the options provided in the game client. The purpose of this user.cfg file is to allow players some degree of freedom toward further maximizing or fine-tuning the performance of their game client. However, we do not provide technical support for user.cfg changes, nor can we provide technical support for issues with the game client when a modified user.cfg file is being used. This is due to the amount of potential variables a heavily modified user.cfg can introduce, making it extremely difficult to narrow down the cause of an issue.

Beyond its intended purpose, it is also possible that changes to the user.cfg may sometimes be able provide an unfair or otherwise prohibited advantage to a player outside the spirit or scope of what the user.cfg file is intended to be used for.

We reserve the right to remove any functionality from the user.cfg as we see fit.

Generally, if it has been determined that a player has modified their user.cfg in such a way to gain an unfair or otherwise prohibited advantage outside the spirit or scope of what the user.cfg file is intended to be used for, they will not be subject to serious moderation actions for such behavior. Instead, we will work to close that particular loophole in the user.cfg and simply warn the player about such modifications.

If we determine that a player is consistently using such user.cfg exploits we reserve the right to enforce escalated moderation actions.

NON-PARTICIPATION



Out of all the Code of Conduct guidelines, the interpretation of what constitutes non-participation is probably the most commonly debated.

The purpose of the information below is to clarify our policies on non-participation, and to outline what can be classified as non-participation.

Going AFK (away from keyboard)

The absence of even one player in a match can directly impact the playing experience and level of enjoyment for all other players in that match. Pressing the ‘Play Now’ button to search for a match should be seen as an unspoken commitment to those all other players who will be placed into the same match.

We completely understand that life goes on regardless of your participation in a game, but walking away from the computer or alt+tabbing out to browse the internet after initiating a match and not returning in time to provide meaningful assistance to your teammates are considered acts of non-participation.

Shutting Down your ‘Mech or avoiding engagements with the enemy, and when doing so might be considered non-participation

All pilots have access to a Shutdown command for their ‘Mechs, mapped by default to the ‘P’ key and listed as ‘Toggle Power’ in the keyboard menu.

The primary benefit to shutting down your ‘Mech is that it will no longer appear on enemy radar. In the deciding moments of a close match with few ‘Mechs left standing on the battlefield, effective use of the shutdown mechanic and/or evasion tactics has the potential to provide you with the following benefits:

  • Breaking a target lock
  • Appearing ‘heat neutral’ on maps where Thermal Vision might commonly be used
  • Presenting on opportunity for staging an ambush
  • Evading detection long enough to secure a win through Conquest points
  • Evading detection long enough to secure a timer expiration win when you have superior numbers, in circumstances where you may be too critically damaged to otherwise risk a direct engagement with the enemy

The above situations are considered to be within the scope of what the shutdown mechanic or evasion tactics are intended to be used for.

There are situations that do not fall within the scope of what the shutdown mechanic or evasion tactics are intended for. The use of the shutdown mechanic or avoiding contact with the enemy under the following situations may be classed as an act of non-participation, subject to evaluation and moderation actions by Support services:

  • Ceasing to meaningfully contribute for the remainder of the match if you still have support equipment, useful modules, or weapons (with any necessary ammo) available. Losing your primary weapon is not an acceptable excuse for hiding and/or shutting down if you still have a secondary weapon, a support-based item such as a TAG, or a consumable module available for use.
  • Running out the clock, or needlessly extending the duration of the match, in cases where doing so will not assist you towards victory.
  • Running out the clock or needlessly extending the duration of a Faction Play match in an attempt to keep a particular group or Unit in the current engagement for as long as possible, in cases where doing so will not assist you towards victory, is not considered an acceptable tactic.

Disliking a map or game mode or attempting to preserve a player statistic such as Kill/Death Ratio are not acceptable excuses for non-participation.

Threats, Bullying, and Personal Information



Cyber-bullying has no place in MechWarrior Online or any of the PGI services. Any attempt to threaten or disturb the private and/or public real life of any player is treated with extreme severity and will not be tolerated. Threatening other players or engaging in insults, accusations, or negative behavior that references or involves real life identities or personalities is forbidden. Releasing personal or identifying information about another player using PGi services is forbidden.

SPAMMING / TROLLING / UNCONSTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR



Engaging in any of the following actions while using PGI services is forbidden:

  • Excessively communicating the same phrase, similar phrases, or pure gibberish.
  • Sending the same communication in multiple areas.
  • Creating forum threads about existing topics.
  • Creating duplicate or similar threads about an existing topic for further discussion in more than one forum.
  • Sending communications for the purpose of causing unrest.
  • Causing disturbances, such as picking fights, making off topic posts that derail a discussion, or insulting other individuals.
  • Communicating non-constructive comments.
  • Abusing Report features by sending false alarms, nonsensical messages, or reporting activities that do not violate the Code of Conduct or Terms of Use.
  • Responding to a topic of conversation with ‘IBTL’, ‘TLDR’, ‘+1’,’yawn’, ‘ok’, ‘bump’, or any other fad or low-effort statements.
  • Posting farewells, such as “I quit”, “I’m done”, “I’m leaving”, and any similar variations.
  • Posting threads, content, or communications in areas that do not relate to the posted content.
  • Post or communicate requests and/or demands for responses.

STAFF ABUSE



Engaging in any of the following actions is forbidden:

  • Impersonating members of PGI staff or the volunteer moderator team.
  • Griefing or violating the Code of Conduct when engaging with or referencing members of PGI staff or the volunteer moderator team.
  • Negatively calling out members of PGI staff or volunteer moderator team, either as a group or individually, in topics, comments, or other communications.
  • Demanding a public response or acknowledgement of topics, comments, or other communications.

USING MACRO SOFTWARE



Keybind macro software and hardware mechanisms are permitted for use as long as such mechanisms still require manual input to initiate and do not fully automate gameplay.