'Destruction AllStars' loses default voice chat after harassment claims

The car smasher game didn't have an easy way to switch off voice chat.

Lucid Games/PlayStation Studios

Destruction AllStars’ developer Lucid Games has rolled out an update for the recently released title, which disables its voice chat by default. On Twitter, Lucid says it’s now “actively working on longer-term enhancements to the voice communications system.” The developer has switched off voice communications following numerous harassment complaints — Destruction AllStars’ voice chat was originally switched on by default, after all, and you couldn’t easily mute everyone else.

To switch voice off, you had to go into the PlayStation 5 menu and disable voice chat. Otherwise, you’d be stuck listening to other players through your DualSense controller’s speaker. It’s worth noting that some people didn’t even know their voices were being transmitted through DualSense’s mic, so you’d have to deal with not just deliberate harassment but also a lot of background noise. While reviewing the game for Ars Technica, for instance, Sam Machkovech heard obscenities, racist slurs and even an alt-right podcast about the Dark Web and QAnon on replay.

As Kotaku notes, it’s baffling that voice chat was enabled by default in the first place when harassment is (sadly) pretty common in online games. Now that Hotfix 1.2.2 is here, you don’t have to worry about being subjected to unsavory language the moment you jump into the game if all you really want to do is to blow off steam by smashing virtual cars.