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News & Features Discussion  » [Column] General: When Power Diminishes Us

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31 posts found
  SBFord

Associate Editor - News Manager

Joined: 6/28/10
Posts: 13454

 
OP  7/25/13 8:37:38 PM#1

Rich and poor are facts of human existence. It's something we all know. But does that same disparity factor into the games we play? In this week's Devil's Advocate, we examine the notion and offer a few ideas. See what you think before lending your voice to the conversation in the comments.

The short version of the research: The richer you are or seem to think you are, the likelier the chance you act like a douchecanoe being rowed atop the lava from a douche-cano. Yes, I said almost the exact same douchecanoe joke nearly a year ago. It’s perhaps more relevant here than in a piece about Guild Wars 2. Read on!

Read more of Victor Barreiro Jr.'s The Devil's Advocate: When Power Diminishes Us.

Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

  WereLlama

Hard Core Member

Joined: 2/13/12
Posts: 211

7/26/13 12:27:39 PM#2

Victor, excellent article.

I think we as gamers and/or developers can benefit from 'reflection' after our various successes, and encourage each other in and out of the game.  

The benefits outside the game could be exponential.   

 
  Battlerock

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/12/11
Posts: 805

7/26/13 12:30:58 PM#3
Nice article and I would have to say it coincides with my experience. I do pretty well in the real world and I am not to grand most of the time in the virtual. Oddly enough I haven given away things in the virtual world that alot of people I play with would never give away. Rare mounts and in game currencies large amounts of in game currency. I have found that having everything I need takes the wind out of my sails when it comes to enjoying the games I play. I wonder if it works in the real world like that too? I'm to scared to try. This article also reminds me. I got a huge chuckle out of all of the Neverwinter drama that went on. People were complaining left and right, I only observed and I just couldnt help but laugh because I was poor as poor could be in Neverwinter, yet I was still having fun and the broken economy didn't have any effect on me whatsoever. I thought to myself as I read the various complaints, "boy that would really stink to be those people" then I logged back into my dwarf guardian fight and wooped up on some demons. At that point in time my focus went from " boy it sux to be those people" to "man this combat sure is smooth and alot of fun"
  bcbully

Elite Member

Joined: 3/03/12
Posts: 7244

7/26/13 12:40:00 PM#4
Thanks man.

When I eat chocolate chip pie it just doesn't feel like chocolate chip cookies. The texture, the consistency, it's just not the same and this is disappointing.

  drowelf

Advanced Member

Joined: 5/25/04
Posts: 103

7/26/13 12:42:50 PM#5

This is going to anger some, but the video proves one of the lesions that Christ gave in the parable of Lazzarus and the Rich man that is the rich don't see the poor as people, nor do they fear God. The Bible says do not say " I got this gain (money)  from my own effort". and so they prove Scripture. 

 

  Wraithone

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 3567

If you can't kill it, don't make it mad.

7/26/13 1:09:44 PM#6

Its not the power (money) that corrupts.  Its the choices that it makes available to the people possessing it.  Its also the unaccountability that power allows those with sufficient of it.

But given the ideologies involved, all sides are likely to draw their own biased conclusions.

  lugal

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/13/08
Posts: 545

7/26/13 1:46:58 PM#7
Berkley CA. Not exactly a hot bead for leveled headed mainstream views on any subject.

Roses are red
Violets are blue
The reviewer has a mishapen head
Which means his opinion is skewed
...Aldous.MF'n.Huxley

  Wraithone

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 3567

If you can't kill it, don't make it mad.

7/26/13 2:16:52 PM#8
Originally posted by lugal
Berkley CA. Not exactly a hot bead for leveled headed mainstream views on any subject.

Do you know why its called "mainstream"? Because its too shallow to be a river... ^^  Even those at Berkley are capable of doing science.  I'd have to examine their methodology before I made any judgement in the matter.

  MondoA2J

Novice Member

Joined: 3/18/13
Posts: 259

"You are mine, I'm yours, and if we die, we die. But first we'll live." Ygritte

7/26/13 5:01:26 PM#9

Wait...what people with money and power misbehave? Nooooooo.

People in games acting like asshats in games? Noooooo.

I find that people most of the time choose to take their money and power and stomp on the people below them. This isn't different in real life or in a gaming scenario.

Absolute power, corrupts absolute.

This isn't about being cynical but look at the plenty of examples in history. The nature of human beings is naturally a selfish one. Our body wants to preserve ME. I need to find shelter for ME. I need to find a mate to spread MY genes.

Get the idea? Give a man power and money and you will see the true merits of his character.

Same applies to women as well btw.

MMORPG Gamers/Developers need a reality check!

  Wraithone

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 3567

If you can't kill it, don't make it mad.

7/26/13 9:57:15 PM#10
Originally posted by mm0-pleyer
i hate to come barreling in here on my douchecanoe but while i honestly dgaf what others do with their money i highly urge people not to donate to any kind of charity except for work, time and items, in the US there are only a handful (literally) of people who oversee spending corruption and ethics in these businesses, i did a job at Save the Children and that place should be called Save Our Children, all driving brand new 150k benz in a super nice HQ in Conn. right on the river, insane really, its too bad there isnt better ethics and checks for this but its hard for people to get things running correctly it seems..
 
 
 

I'm certain that we just need to give the "right people" enough *power* to "do something" about this... ^^  Depending on ones ideology, the "right people" would be neo cons, "progressives" or some such.  After all, thats "worked" so well in the past... Hows that "Hope and Change" working out for you?  ^^

Until people realize that NO ONE can or should be trusted with power, the world will continue to be ruled by sociopaths.

  Brynn

Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/17/03
Posts: 338

7/26/13 11:17:33 PM#11
mm0-pleyer, I greatly agree with you! It's a shame really. There are ways to donate to those in need, but not through the large named charities.
  User Deleted
7/27/13 12:31:51 AM#12
I find the people that are quickest to discredit a source rather than arguing actual points are the most likely to fit into the negative category of a research paper, in this case, upper-class people. 
  Theodwulf

Advanced Member

Joined: 2/01/12
Posts: 207

7/27/13 5:45:52 AM#13

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power"

  Abraham Lincoln

   There are many bullies in waiting, just waiting until they have power  to pull a horror show.   MMO games draw these people, as it is the only way to have power over others. Those people were always douches, they just never had an opportunity to exercise their desires to dominate and torment others.  Through their actions they feel empowered and thus feel that they matter, it's actually really sad.. It's not so much a product of wealth, wealth is just one of the means to execute these desires if they exist in a person.

  In game, charity removes the challenge of the game for the recipient . Are they playing the game or do they want the game played for them? Are they learning anything about game mechanics from your charity? Are they going to buy things they actually need or are they going to buy stupid things because they don't understand the game?  Is charity "GOOD" in a game?

  Wraithone

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 3567

If you can't kill it, don't make it mad.

7/27/13 7:00:33 AM#14
Originally posted by Theodwulf

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power"

  Abraham Lincoln

   There are many bullies in waiting, just waiting until they have power  to pull a horror show.   MMO games draw these people, as it is the only way to have power over others. Those people were always douches, they just never had an opportunity to exercise their desires to dominate and torment others.  Through their actions they feel empowered and thus feel that they matter, it's actually really sad.. It's not so much a product of wealth, wealth is just one of the means to execute these desires if they exist in a person.

  In game, charity removes the challenge of the game for the recipient . Are they playing the game or do they want the game played for them? Are they learning anything about game mechanics from your charity? Are they going to buy things they actually need or are they going to buy stupid things because they don't understand the game?  Is charity "GOOD" in a game?

The irony of the above quote from Lincoln, who went on to become a tyrant, is lost on far too many people.  They wouldn't have had me in their test. I'd have refused to play a game that wasn't balanced.  But how many people would have responded in that fashion?

  killahh

Novice Member

Joined: 8/25/04
Posts: 455

As famous as the unknown soldier

7/27/13 7:16:10 AM#15
Did Lincoln become a tyrant? Hmm

Can't make a cake without breaking a few eggs.

Gonada Dahung,over 20 years of mmorpg's and counting....Please Lord, let someone make a game that had all the awesomeness of UO, EQ and EVE...

  Konfess

Elite Member

Joined: 10/10/07
Posts: 734

7/27/13 10:33:33 AM#16

"When the powerful have power, they likely attribute their success to their skills, becoming less cognizant of how developers gave them the opportunity to shine using potentially crappy balancing." 

And this is the reason for a call for more sandbox games.

Pardon any spelling errors
Konfess your cyns and some maybe forgiven
Boy: Why can't I talk to Him?
Mom: We don't talk to Priests.

  sirach

Novice Member

Joined: 4/27/11
Posts: 53

7/27/13 10:55:01 AM#17
I think this is my favorite article I have ever read on this site. Great job. 
  Purutzil

Elite Member

Joined: 10/02/11
Posts: 2860

The Critical Hit Pretzel!

7/27/13 11:58:56 AM#18

Human beings are greedy. As we get power, it tends to corrupt us and we continue to seek more. Its a bit sad to look at ourselves in this way but in some ways its just how natural selection works. The shame is how we can't realize this and still become more greedy and self conceited of ourselves in the process. 

 

Personally, I enjoy RPGs. More so, i enjoy the aspect of working hard to make progress. Most of all though, I enjoy toppling people who use their 'power' or 'superiority' of wealth(gear) or other boosts letting skill over-take them. Its such a thrill to do such. On the flip side though, as I get better equipped, even though I know full well its partly to do with what I have over someone else, I do at times finding myself with a superiority complex over others, attributing it to myself being so good rather then the gear I've earned. I KNOW that gear is factoring in yet at the same time i can't help but feel that way. 

Its really odd I have to say, and its a habit I have and I fully catch and just shake my head that my mind shifts in such a direction and I feel I need to remind myself about it.

  Attend4455

Novice Member

Joined: 2/03/13
Posts: 166

7/27/13 2:58:32 PM#19

Interesting as always Victor.

I'm still waiting for commentators to note that wealth in MMOs follows a power law distribution, aka Pareto Law

I sometimes make spelling and grammar errors but I don't pretend it's because I'm using a phone

  Wraithone

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/09/04
Posts: 3567

If you can't kill it, don't make it mad.

7/28/13 1:44:23 AM#20
Originally posted by killahh
Did Lincoln become a tyrant? Hmm

Can't make a cake without breaking a few eggs.

Anyone who examines real history knows Lincoln became a tyrant.  His own actions demonstrate his lack of respect for his oath of office, and his trampling of the Constitution and Bill of Rights are well known.

I've never subscribed to the concept that the ends, justify the means used to achieve them. Any more than I believe that one has to destroy the Constitution, to "save" it...

Power corrupts in games and real life.  Its not a matter of picking the "right" people.  Its a fact that NO ONE should hold that amount of power.  Nor should anyone who actively seeks out power, be trusted with it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Real_Lincoln

http://mises.org/misesreview_detail.aspx?control=207

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