Are Gamers Killing Gaming?
February 17, 2009

New Zealand-based games blog Polymath posts a clumsy but interesting article about 'bullying' in online gaming.

It's something I've not noticed myself in L4D, which has one of the most mature and pleasant communities I've had the pleasure of playing with. In fact, I'd argue that some of the most brilliant moments in the game result from someone making a rooky error, and seeing how the Director mercilessly punishes them for it. But I guess the latter part is for a different discussion.

The article's somewhat undermined by a writer who appears to have been writing without thinking (the suggestion that American players are inherently more likely to behave like arseholes is slightly awkward, and the implication that he didn't bother to have a bash in single-player before jumping to the online stage does suggest he may, in fact, have been a little annoying to play with). But it's also an engaging piece of NGJ that raises some interesting points. Mainly, one that he doesn't even really cover: in what other walk of life outside the internet is it acceptable to behave like this towards people?

Like I said, I haven't seen this in L4D, but I was put off WoW because of it (probably for the best: I have an addictive personality) and it used to be all over the place in Counter-Strike (though, fortunately, I was fucking ace at that, so I was never at the receiving end). And it really isn't on.

Oh: the comments thread is typically hilarious internet flaming, too, so that's always fun.

Most recent blog posts from Lewis Denby...

Felix_Arabia Felix_Arabia - February 17, 2009 (03:00 PM)
Lewis Lewis - February 17, 2009 (03:13 PM)
EmP EmP - February 17, 2009 (03:17 PM)
I tend to either stray from online gaming or do so on silent simply because I'm in intolerent prick at the best of times but even more so when some dorky twelve-year-old yank is yelling "FAGFAGFAGFAGFAG" over and over again because I just nailed him with a perfect railgun shot.

Perhaps I'm sounding like said rant a little, (and I'm not saying that other countrys do not have their share of morons), but, frankly, I'd usually rather play on my own than have to endure it.
Felix_Arabia Felix_Arabia - February 17, 2009 (03:22 PM)
Yes to the title of your blog post.
pickhut pickhut - February 17, 2009 (06:31 PM)
I used to play games online whenever I could, but nowadays, I try to avoid it if possible. I have found it overall to be a frustrating experience, thanks to the amount of people who think they can get away with saying or doing whatever they want, simply because they're not actually in front of these people when they do it, thus, avoiding an ass-kicking.

I didn't mind it at first, but it breaks you down when you have to deal with it every single time. I play games to have fun, not listen to people bad mouth me no matter what I do in a game. Really, the only time I ever play an online game anymore is if it's with a friend, which makes the experience more bearable. Also, if I happen to be recording, capturing someone saying something really stupid.

Other annoying online moments that happen to me a lot:

-People leaving a game after you're about to win. It's especially frustrating when the game doesn't penalize them for doing so. This made games like Command & Conquer 3 on the Xbox 360 online unplayable, unless you're playing against people who are willing to stick it out til the end. I remember playing a match with three other players. It was a mode where you actually had about 20 or so minutes to set up your base, weapons, and vehicles, before the barrier around everyone's area disappears. So, the time was over, the barriers were dropped, and we started fighting each other. The host was getting his ass handed to him, and guess what happened? He left, and as a result, everyone else was kicked out of the match.

-Getting kicked out of a lobby for not having a mic. People get irritated as hell when they notice I don't have a mic, and actually take it as an insult. The funny thing is, I do have a mic, I just don't use it that much, because I don't really like talking while playing.

-People who talk trash before, during, and after a game, (and I mean serious trash talk, the type where you can actually feel their hatred) and ACTUALLY have the insane skills to kick everyone's ass in the game.
Halon Halon - February 17, 2009 (09:55 PM)
I probably play online more than offline; single player games kind of got boring to me and I'd rather play with/against real humans than against a computer any day.

Left 4 Dead is pretty bad, though; it's almost impossible to complete a versus mode match because once a team starts losing most of them ragequit and it ruins the fun.

Offensive people, ragequitting, etc doesn't ever bother me because I mostly play on private servers/pugs/competitive play where people take the games seriously.
darketernal darketernal - February 18, 2009 (01:31 AM)
The answer is yes to your post for simple reasons, and that is that all people are bastard covered bastards with bastard filling. Online gaming certainly made even more of a step in that way. When I was young, there was no such thing as playing games with many people from the comfort of your home. You played Duke Nukem or Carmageddon, or whatever the hell was popular those days with other people via LAN and people acted with common sense. More likely than not because if they bashed on you constantly with verbal immature threats you could calmly stand up from your table and stab them in the throat.

Though honestly, that's more of a general internet population problem these days. As great as it is that you are anonymous on the net, it also gives you the outlet for all your short comings in life, all your frustrations. Be it because you are an emotional train wreck, ugly little piece of crap that gets his arse kicked daily in school, fat neckbeard living in a basement or just plain out frustrated with some other segment of your life, people think they could vent out in that way.

And that's why the answer is yes. Being a formless creature that can state their opinions/hatred destroys gaming more often then it helps it.

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