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Rollo talks games. (And Pie)

Just another gamer pretending to know what he's talking about.

Author: Rollotamasi

Gamers. Band of Brothers or Pack of Wolves?

Posted by Rollotamasi Monday January 7 2008 at 8:36PM
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I have recently become a bit discouraged with the "gaming" community.  I am not a "old" guy.  I am 28.  However I have been gaming for about 15 years.  It has always been my number one hobby.  I am not going to bore you with boasts about my Commodore 64 or Atari 400 but I will tell you this.  My first online game was Tradewars.  If you get that reference then you should have a pretty easy time following what I am going to say.  If you don't get that reference then you need to proceed with a open mind.  First, I am going to start with a little story. (Dream sequence sound)

In addidtion to gaming I have another hobby.  It's not my number one but it's a close second.  Disc Golf.  I LOVE ME SOME DISC GOLF. Love it love it love it.  I take my hobbies pretty serious.  Gaming- Ive got a pretty nice rig.  Disc Golf - Im one of the guys with the bag, 20 discs, etc.  To use a phrase from my day "I come correct."  I play in tournaments, blah blah blah.  Anyway, one afternoon I am finishing up my 1st round as I am getting ready to to tee off on the 18th hole when I see someone walking around in the woods looking lost.  This generally means someone has lost  a disc.  I shout "Want some help?"  and he happily agrees.  Walking around in the woods alone looking for a lost disc REALLY sucks. 

After a few mins of looking it is apparent we arent going to find it.  I ask the kid (Who appeared to be about 15 or 16) If he was going to play another round.  He said no as he didn't have a disc.  I asked him if he would like to throw a round with me and he could use one of mine.  He happily accepted and said "Well, at least one person out here isn't a asshole."  I inquired as to what he meant and he explained.  A few groups of players had given him a hard time about using a frisbee.  Disc Golf is "Meant" to be played with a disc, not a frisbee.  When people use frisbee's they tend to get heckled by other players that "Know how the game is meant to be played.   a lot of players on their first time out or players that don't play often will use a frisbee.  I told the kid that that was just the way some people were and to ignore them.  I said to play the game how he wanted and the way he had the most fun.

I know, the disc golf story is getting a bit long winded but I promise, its relevant to the point I am going to try to make later.   Anyway, after we shot a round I needed to be on my way.  I told him to keep the disc.  He thanks me and said that we was going to practice putting for a while.  He was hooked.  I knew it.  Three days later I was back at the course and there he was.  Throwing putts.  We shot a few rounds together.  Every time I was at the course I would see him.  The next time I saw him he had 2 discs.  Then 4.  Then a bag.  Etc.  We shot together just about every week.  Fast forward 2 years.   Saturday afternoon I was standing in second place at the awards ceremony for a local tournament.  Guess who was standing in first?

This story has several morals. First and foremost is don't be a dick.  That goes for gaming, disc golf or any other facet of life you care to apply it to.  The way that it applies to gaming is something I have been thinking about quite a lot.  I spend a lot of time on these forums.  I have a job that I don't do anything until something breaks so I have a lot of time to fill.  I see a lot of garbage.  I'm not talking about the flames per say, but I am talking about the bashing.  Mainly the bashing on games like WoW that are "To easy".  They "Aren't real MMO's".  "They are for N00bs". 

My question is this.  If you don't like playing disc golf with a frisbee, then why not just not play with a frisbee?  Why do you feel the need to berate others for their choice of playing with one?  How is their playing with a frisbee effecting your game play?  What I am saying is this, If you don't like easy MMO's, don't play them.  In addidtion to not playing them you should also SHUT THE @$*% UP.  Honestly, Why do you feel the need to berate players of a game just because its not hardcore enough for YOU?  Ok, its not your particular brand of vodka.  Thats fine.  Why can't people seem to just leave it at that?

I remeber when gamers were a tight knight group.  One more person wanting to get into gaming was embraced and welcomed by the community.  They taught them the ropes.  Now days, they berate them for making "stupid" mistakes and not playing games that are hardcore enough.  More gamers is better for all gamers.  More people playing WoW and LoTR is good for our community.  Strength in numbers.  Our industry continues to grow and with the help of easily accessable games like WoW and LOTRO will probably soon rake in more money then the movie business.  Thats coming a LONG way from Tradewars.  Some of the players will mature into hardcore gamers and move on to more hardcore games.  Some will not.  But for those that don't, what gives you the right to berate them because they don't?  Who are you to decide what "The way it is susposed to be" actually is?  Who are you to tell others that their way of having fun is wrong? 

Its like someone that goes to a little leauge game, decides they don't like it and then spends the next 6 months moaning and complaining that "Its not real baseball" and "The kids aren't very good"  "And the action sucks".  If you don't like it just don't go to another game.  Why do you feel the need to spew your negativity to everyone else?

Let people play the way they way the want to.  Who knows, in a few months they could be pwning YOU.  A lot of you probably don't understand this.  A lot of you probably WON'T understand this until one day.  On this particular day you are going to be at a little leauge game for your son/daugter/neice/nephew/grandkid/whatever.  And little Timmy or Katie is going to be up to bat or maybe running to catch a line drive.  And then, they are going to strike out or miss the catch.  And then something is going to happen.  Some asshole parent from the other team (Or maybe even the same team) is going to yell some stupid remark about how he/she should have made that catch or hit that last pitch.  And that kid is going to look at you.  And then, you are going to have to fight every instinct in your body to walk over there and smack the living hell out of that parent.  All that time you are going to be thinking..."What gives them the right"

 

 

Goodnight.

Nightbringe1 writes:

There are far to many wolves, both in game and out, in the world today. People that enjoy tearing down anyone and everyone that they perceive to to less then themselves in any way.

It is the same people that want instant gratification, no penalties for anything, and if things go wrong the blame could not possibly fall upon their shoulders.

Mon Jan 07 2008 10:39PM Report
Firedorn writes:

Nice piece.

I hear ya!  If you don't like a game, state your opinion (since this is a public forum), then shut up about it.  We don't need to hear that you think LOTRO sucks because of this, that and the other.  How SOE upset you that you have a flame-vendetta against them.  How you find that every game out there copies World of Warcraft.  Just shut up and find a game to play instead of complaining about the ones that disappointed you.  Or better yet, spend time with your friends if you have nothing to play.  Or read a novel, watch a movie, invent something.

People like that are like slinkies...not really good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when you push them down the stairs.

Mon Jan 07 2008 11:21PM Report
NetSapiens writes:

nice blog post, wrong metaphor... not a pack of wolves, rather a pack of hyenas.....

Tue Jan 08 2008 1:52AM Report
LordConan writes: Good food for the thought, I wish more people in the MMO community realised this Tue Jan 08 2008 2:54AM Report
Owyn writes:

It's a good blog.  :)

That said, in defense of those who complain about "too easy" mmorpgs...  The problem, from my perspective, is not that some (many!) people like to play games that are easy to learn and accomplish - but rather that these games have become so successful that they are being emulated to the detriment of the other types of games.

There are a lot more people out there who prefer simple, easy to follow games with simple, easy to achieve objectives than there are players who enjoy harder or more complex games with nonlinear gameplay and self-derived objectives.  It's a fact of life, and those of us who prefer the latter are getting used to the idea.

But the net result is disastrous to us.

In the last two years, virtually every release has been cloned from the same basic gameplay scheme as WOW.  Even games which should have been decent variations like POTBS are really quite similar.  WOW's massive success has spawned a rush to attempt to emulate that success - generally by targeting the same market.

What this has done is left the smaller but still decent sized chunk of players who prefer more complexity out in the cold.  With nothing to play.  With few if any decent options even coming up on the horizon.  And yes, some of us are a little bitter about it.  ;)

I'm not sure exactly what disc golf is (will have to google that later...), but imagine for a moment that someone created a disc golf variant, which was immensely popular, but in gaining that popularity lost the elements which made you love the game in the first place.  That's OK, though, right?  It takes all kinds, and there's room for everyone.

Now imagine that this new variant is so incredibly popular that it replaces your style of game.  No one plays disc golf anymore.  The courses don't allow discs; you can't buy them in stores.  There are still disc players, but it's more profitable to cater to the new popular variant.  And so you're left there, remembering the game you enjoyed, no longer able to enjoy it - hoping, with the other disc players, that someone will open a new disc course, but not seeing any real chance of it anytime soon.

That's where the crowd that favors more complex MMOs is finding themselves.  That's why you hear them complaining about the steady stream of WOW-like games.  That's why there is such an undercurrent of bitterness to the debates about the subject.

Tue Jan 08 2008 4:32AM Report
alakram writes:

Some people will never ever understand, becouse some people is plainly ******

Good post by way ;D

Tue Jan 08 2008 5:57AM Report
Sirmaki writes:

Tradewars was the bomb!! (to use another statement from back in the day ;) ) And yes I agree overall with only two issues. First is the NetSapiens is right. Wolves are more like a band of brothers, hyenas will eat their own. Second is people should feel free to speak out against game they feel are negatively impacting the genre. Just don't dog out people who play them. My wife loves WoW. She dabbled in some other games. But she plays more WoW in a month than she played DAoC in 2 years. So does WoW suck? To me it is more a place to meet up with my friends and hang out than a "real game". Gives me something to do while I wait for Fallen Earth to come out.

Tue Jan 08 2008 7:13AM Report
zymurgeist writes:

Telling people "your game is for n00bs and you suck" does not make them want to try other games. It makes them feel unwelcome. People have a personal investment in the games they play. If the peanut gallery makes to many not want to play other tyoes of games there won't be any other types of games. People who are passionate about games, most developers are, will always try to build better games not just what sells. But they do have to sell. To harp on about how something or other sucks is cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Tue Jan 08 2008 7:29AM Report
gruminator writes:

awesome post mate.

couldnt agree more

 

Tue Jan 08 2008 9:12AM Report
BigDaddyTee writes:

A great post, Rollo.  You made a great point with the disc golf story.  I wanted to address something that Owyn said, though. 

Owyn, I get where you're coming from, I really do.  However, I think the point of this story wasn't so much a discussion of state of MMO's as it was the social aspect of it.  I agree that the vast majority of MMO's released are cookie cutter and I tend to not care for them a whole lot. 

However, what Rollo's post seems to be discussing is how we, as players, treat other, newer players.  I think it's perfectly reasonable to discuss the state of the games and their development.  However, berating the players of the games we don't like accomplishes nothing.   Saying to someone that because they play WoW they are a n00b is the same thing as telling someone from China or Korea that they are a gold farmer. 

It's socially inept to make blanket statements about people or groups of people based on something like this.  I think that's the jist of this dialog.  Welcome new gamers in.  Don't treat them as inferior people because they do something you don't like.

Again, though, Rollo, this was a great topic.  Kudos for injecting an interesting topic into things.

Tue Jan 08 2008 11:24AM Report
Owyn writes:

Oh, I absolutely agree with the idea of fostering and helping to encourage new players!  That just helps *everyone*, in the long run.

But the OP said:

I see a lot of garbage.  I'm not talking about the flames per say, but I am talking about the bashing.  Mainly the bashing on games like WoW that are "To easy".  They "Aren't real MMO's".  "They are for N00bs".

And it was a recurrent underlying theme throughout his blog post.  And that's where my comments were directed.  While I agree that flaming people who play a given game is silly (it's their time, let them do what's fun with it!) I also completely understand the frustration of the hundreds of thousands of players for whom WOW-like games are simply not deep enough to be enjoyable - but who are stuck with nothing else right now, because of the mass popularity of that market and the heavy emulation of WOW going on right now.

Tue Jan 08 2008 6:45PM Report
nortonweb writes:

Outstanding post dude

Tue Jan 08 2008 11:55PM Report
neschria writes:

"This story has several morals. First and foremost is don't be a dick."

I <3 this post.

Wed Jan 09 2008 11:22AM Report
Rollotamasi writes:

"I also completely understand the frustration of the hundreds of thousands of players for whom WOW-like games are simply not deep enough to be enjoyable - but who are stuck with nothing else right now, because of the mass popularity of that market and the heavy emulation of WOW going on right now."

I understand where you are coming from but that frustration need to be direct not at the players of the game but towards the companies that are making the games.  I think people have failed to understand that the way the market is right now people need less time consuming games.  Developers follow the market just like everyone else that makes things do.  Look at the car industry.  Manufacturers have started to move away from making gas guzzling SUV's instead opting for more gas efficient smaller vehicles.  This is what the market demands and if you want to make a healthy profit you follow the market.

Wed Jan 09 2008 4:35PM Report
Owyn writes:

It's not so much that the market has changed to require less time intensive games, Rollo.  It's that the market has swelled to include a new demographic for whom that is a primary consideration.

The other players are still there.  They just don't have any games to play anymore, because the new demographic is being pandered to instead.

Fri Jan 18 2008 7:33PM Report
Reborn17 writes:

I would have to agree with Rollo and Owyn, its really misdirected anger and frustration. Unfortunately the bloodless corporations only care about P&L statements and the bottomline not those of us who built this industry as a playerbase and have matured passed what games like WoW can offer us. Until we outnumber the the "n00bish" and the casuals, we won't generate enough dollars by comparison for truly great mmos to make sense. Especially when all they compare any mmo's success to now is wow.

Sat Jan 19 2008 5:59AM Report
Arowin writes:

Man you make such a good point. I play mmos but wouldnt consider myself a hardcore gamer but i do snowboard and I see a ton of what you point out and its just entirely wrong. So many people laugh when the "new" guy wrecks or messes up on a trick  he's trying instead off encouraging him. Anyway this was a great post

Sat Jan 19 2008 7:47PM Report

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