Microsoft has confirmed reports it’s issuing bans to Baldur’s Gate 3 players on Xbox when their consoles have automatically uploaded video captures featuring in-game nudity, but says it’s willing to reverse suspensions “if actions are deemed to have been taken in error” and suggests users turn the auto-upload feature off to avoid further bans.
Word Baldur’s Gate 3 players were receiving bans for using an Xbox-approved feature with an Xbox-approved game (albeit in a way potentially violating Microsoft policy) surfaced last week, and developer Larian quickly moved to assure fans it was working with Microsoft to sort out the “annoying and uncool” suspensions. Shortly after it said affected parties should start seeing their bans lifted, and that “Work is ongoing, and the Microsoft team is aware of the issue!”.
A week on and Microsoft itself has now acknowledged the situation in a statement on social media. “To provide clarity on Baldur’s Gate 3 mature content enforcement actions,” it wrote, “Xbox account suspensions are not automatic. Each clip is reviewed by a moderator and, if found in violation of our safety and content policies, actioned accordingly.”
Unfortunately, it appears Microsoft won’t be using the occasion as an opportunity to reflect on and adjust its policies and practices – to, say, make auto upload an opt-in feature rather than an opt-out one, or to disable auto-uploads for mature-rated games – and is, instead continuing to place the burden of responsibility on players.
“Our team evaluates appeals and can reverse suspensions if action was taken in error,” it’s statement continued. “If this was a first offense, for example, we will remove the suspension and let players know why it happened and how to avoid future issues (e.g. how to turn off auto-upload when sensitive content is being captured).” It then points players to instructions on how auto-uploads can be disabled on Xbox consoles.
Baldur’s Gate 3’s long-awaited transition to Xbox has been a bit of a bumpy one, of course, with players on the console also experiencing save issues – which Larian has provided a workaround for while it waits for a more permanent fix from Microsoft. Still, Baldur’s Gate 3 remains a highlight of 2023 regardless of console – and probably a highlight of 2024 given its gargantuan size – as both Eurogamer and its readers attested in our end of year round-ups.