Bad apples

Last night being Halloween, we spent it all watching the Ghost Hunters Live Event. Seven straight hours of Ghost Hunters doesn’t leave any room for gaming. But can I just say, Amanda Tapping as a guest investigator = epic win. I now have a huge nerd crush on her.

Anyway since I didn’t do any gaming yesterday I don’t have any news to relate. Instead, I want to talk about mean people. Specifically, mean gaming bloggers. And no, I’m not going to include any links: no need to improve mean people’s google page ranks!

Right now it seems like there’s a wave of gaming bloggers leaving Warhammer Online. For the most part these are people who were in the beta, loved the game, got caught up in the hype and the excitement, threw down their money, and found a game very different (and less fun) from what they’d been playing in beta. So they’re disappointed and either a little sad or a little angry, and they’re quitting.

I find this sad. Granted these are just games, but still, to see a person going from excited about an event to disappointed…I have enough humanity in me to see this as unfortunate. But for some bloggers, this is an opportunity to laugh and jeer and enjoy the misfortune of others. That’s just mean and frankly, it says a lot about you as a person.

Even though “gaming” is becoming more mainstream, as “Gamers” (and particularly as “MMO Gamers” we’re still the object of much puzzlement and faint scorn in the greater public. When we go back to work after a few days off and someone asks “Did you do anything fun on your vacation?” most of us won’t say “Hell yeah, I hit level cap with my Priest!” because if we say that, we’re going to be labeled as some kind of anti-social loser, and honestly in a lot of companies this kind of label can negatively impact opportunities for advancement. Instead we say “Ah, I just kind of hung-out at home and relaxed, y’know? Rested up, read some books, watched some movies.” and then the person we’re talking to will smile knowingly and say “Yes, sometimes the best vacation is just to stay home and enjoy the family.” and all is well.

Which is a wild tangent, but my point is I still think we gamers need to stick together and cut each other some slack. The fact that you love World of Middle Earth and I love Warcraft Online is a teeny, tiny, trivial difference compared to the fact that we both love staying home and playing an MMO vs the people who choose to go to the movies/bar/opera/crack den/sports arena/hiking/ballet as their preferred way of spending leisure time.

Tearing each other down just makes our community weaker. How about we all (myself included, I’m certainly not infallible in this respect) try to be a bit more supportive of each other. We’re all gamers, after all. We’ve got plenty of common ground to cover.

6 thoughts on “Bad apples

  1. Pingback: Bad apples
  2. It’s taken you THIS LONG to work up a nerd crush on Amanda Tapping? Where were you in the last 10 years? Sadly though, I thought she was one a minority of women who look really really good with short hair, and now it’s fit-with-expectations-long. Equally sadly, though her English accent for Sanctuary is not bad at all (and improving), the show itself is… meh.

  3. Yeah, I never got into SG-1 (shocking, I know) so she was pretty new to me when she popped up in SG:Atlantis. And now I’m watching her in Sanctuary, which I’m kind of in that “Patiently waiting for it to find its groove” mode with.

    But she just seemed genuinely nice and pretty down to earth on the GH special.

  4. I’m not in any way defending them but hasn’t this sort of behaviour always existed in online games. Even people playing the same game will badmouth the game they are playing and try to influence others to their way of thinking. You see it in OOC all the time. So I’m not all that surprised that it happens between games too. Not that it’s right of course. I suppose it’s that thing about wanting your opinion to be validated by others coming around to your point-of-view.

    I’m just thinking out loud really though. Maybe these people are vocal in the online community because as you say, it’s not mainstream so they’re not going to go to work and stand around the water cooler and discuss their latest peeve about a game. But I do know what you mean – there’s constructive criticism, and then there’s badmouthing and meanness and I do understand that you’re really talking about the latter.

  5. Yeah, it has always existed. I guess I give more weight, though, to blog posts that are going to be around for a long time vs in-game chat that is transient and later forgotten.

    And bad-mouthing the game is one thing, while making fun of or bad-mouthing other gamers is another, though that line can be pretty fuzzy sometimes.

  6. I think I may have an inkling to whom you’re referring. It’s been a realization of mine lately, that these folk/s are simply the type to take most anything personally. It’s a fault to be sure, but not one they may be prepared to correct or even admit.

    Ergo, I try extra hard to keep conversation civil and on-topic. That, or we can ignore them. For me, it’s very hard to do the latter on a boring Monday.

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