Question Time: Do Online Gamers Need To Grow Up?

losthar.jpgOz Kotakuite Jordan wrote in recently to express his disappointment with the attitudes of online gamers. Specifically, after being defeated in a game of Halo 3, Jordan and his team mates were met with less-than-jovial commiserations from the victors:

As we returned to the lobby, and I had just started saying my routine Good Game and congratulations (I don't like petty arguments online, so am always as friendly as I can be) when I was interrupted by the winning teams cocky and snide remarks. As my team attempted to congratulate them on the victory, as we had many other teams, all they could do was refer to vulgar jokes and insults at our expense. It's as if they'd expected to win as they had long ago sized us up!

Are insults and vulgar remarks to simply be expected if you play online, or should we demand more from our fellow players and perhaps, even ourselves? Bad winners are worse than bad losers - at least losers have something to feel bad about.

I can't say I've ever made negative remarks against another player while online. I get frustrated, sure, but usually it's at myself or my team mates for game-losing mistakes. However in these situations you just accept the fact that everyone's human and shit happens.

You can read the rest of Jordan's story after the jump, and I encourage you to add your own thoughts about the topic.

Afternoon, Kotaku,

I write to you today as a very pessimistic online gamer.

I had just completed a fairly enjoyable afternoon playing online in Halo 3, as I had found a good new set of friends online that made as my team.

We had a lot of fun, whether we won or lost, as morale was high, and everyone was encouraging one another.

Of course a few jokes were thrown around by the other team at our expense during the session, but just as I was finishing my last game (to go off and play ShadowRun), our high-morale team was degraded by comments from the opposing team.

We had narrowly lost our last match by 4 points against these people.

As we returned to the lobby, and I had just started saying my routine Good Game and congratulations (I don't like petty arguments online, so am always as friendly as I can be) when I was interrupted by the winning teams cocky and snide remarks. As my team attempted to congratulate them on the victory, as we had many other teams, all they could do was refer to vulgar jokes and insults at our expense. It's as if they'd expected to win as they had long ago sized us up!

We had had respect for those players that defeated us gallantly in combat, but when we offered our end-game congratulations, and gratitude for an enjoyable match, we received insult upon insult on our performance.

What had sparked this? Absolutely nothing! There was no way we could have upset them prior to the match, or even during it. So why all this negative feedback after an enjoyable game?

Riddled throughout games these days are people who just cannot keep their mouths shut. They strive on putting other people down due to in-game skill. It's not about who ultimately wins the game, as everyone who gets a kill technically 'wins', in the sense that they win out over the opponent. It's not about how good you can size up your opponent with what is believed to be close and personal attacks. It's about the fun that has been had in the game.

Although my team suffered severe oppression, and in the final run of 5 kills unto the victory of the other team (in which we were down by 9), we told each other to continue, to go down fighting. We were going to do the best we could. Although we lost, we had a heck of a lot of fun, and greatly enjoyed each others co-operation.

We're all just disappointed in the unfortunate attitudes of the other players.


Comments

    The fact that many, many people decide that the anonymity of being online can cause them to be complete jerks is severely disappointing at times. Especially when you just want to have fun and socialise with friends.

    I think we all realise though, that this is just pathetic human nature at play. The sooner a proper system of punishing users who are being overly offensive, the better.

    I totally understand your pain.
    When I was younger I tried to avoid sport at school for that exact reason. Being 'sledged' was just part of the game, so I left the 'blokey blokes' alone to play their 'footy' and played my 'Nintendo Oil Panic' (yes it was a while ago)under the shade of a tree instead.
    Of late that same, testosterone indused pack mentality, is overtaking my gaming world.
    What do we do. I feel like we were here first.

    I've been playing online for a long long time (Rise of the Triad, look it up ;) and unfortunately this is nothing really new.

    I have a group of mates I play with regularly, and we're always jovial, never taking the game too seriously and playing for fun but unfortunately you do get these people who seem to compensate for their personal life by abusing random people online saying things they'd never have the guts to say to their face. Or in my case, having to deal with Americans screaming down their headsets at you about lag and "Eurotrash" connnections, something every Aussie gamer can relate to no doubt. The only thing you can really do is ignore them and get on with the game concentrate on the fun you're having with your team mates and ignore the drop kicks.

    Are you sure the other team wasn't full of Australian Cricketers?

    The flip side of the coin is that on the internet, you can pretty much always just walk away. You might not be able to enforce sportsmanship in online games, but you can certainly seek it out; friends lists and shi- er, fecal rosters can help with that.

    I think in the end, no matter how much disappointed you are in the online gaming community, and it can get pretty bad sometimes, you've gotta do the Gandhi thing and be the change you want to see. As the gaming community ages, there are going to be more people around who can appreciate that and reciprocate, and things will steadily get better. Then again, as long as games have a strong appeal to teenage boys, the hobby is going to have it's fair share of issues. Choose your hobbies accordingly.

    Halo 3 has the single best voice management options out of any 360 game ever made.

    Easy access to mute via the back button.

    Easy ways to only specify team and party members.

    My advice, submit player feedback, even file a complaint through Live if you feel you have been defiled, set your voice chatter to team only and do as Chopper sez.

    I wholeheartedly agree with PAs theory. I believe another of their comics, aimed at the lobby systems in games and players who can be found in them, hits the nail on the head in a similar, brilliant fashion.

    It seems to have become a part of online gaming. When my mate and myself are gearing up for a night of 2v2 in CnC ZH, we go in EXPECTING to not get a good game going for at least half an hour merely due to the amount of players who will throw out any pre-match rules as soon as the game starts and will rush rush rush or build multiple superweapons etc.

    From my experience with Halo 3, it has mostly been positive, and I'm sure the brilliant mute system renders most abuse problems obsolete.

    Is this complaint even post-worthy? If they bother you that much mute them, give them bad feedback and then move on to the next match. This is the internet, jerks are to be expected (and yes, I realise I may come across as a jerk to you with this response) and if you're going to game online and want to enjoy it then pretty quickly you need to realise that these people aren't worth your time being upset over.

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