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Garwulf's Corner: The LiveJournal
The musings of Robert B. Marks - author, editor, publisher, and researcher

Robert B. Marks
Date: 2009-01-06 00:14
Subject: Multiplayer and Battle.net
Security: Public
Location:In my chair
Tags:battle.net
Online multiplayer would be so much better if you didn't have to deal with the players.

I am a big fan of tower defenses.  They're a great way to kick back and relax - not a lot of stress, not twitch gaming, just building towers and using them to shoot up defenseless creatures as they try to go from point A to point B.  Most of the time, I play them on Warcraft III, under the not-entirely-surprising handle of Garwulf.

Well, they would be relaxing, if it wasn't for the other players.  This is the problem with multiplayer on a place like Battle.net.  People assume that just because they aren't in the room with you, they can act like a bunch of complete jackasses.  Ultimately, it ruins the experience for the other players.

Example - I was in a game of Crop Circles tonight, and a player with the handle of "nodiggity3d" was playing red.  On level 30, for no apparent reason, after the end player left, he kicked every other player out of the game.  Now, nobody in the game was doing anything wrong - in fact, everybody was having fun.  At least, they were.  I was then kicked out of another game on a different map, although that was because of a comment I made about disliking jackasses, and I get the feeling the red player thought I was talking about him - I wasn't.

But abuse of the kick function on a map is something I've seen far more than I would like.  I remember one map where the player with the kick power kicked anybody who got more kills than he did.  Far more common are insults - let a few monsters through, and you get insulted.  On a map like the original Mafarazzo, where the last player gets deprived of kills, being stuck at the end means that you get starved for kills, and then shouted at as you finally let some monsters through because you couldn't build squat.  Some fun, eh?

Now, there are some who would say that those jackasses were probably teenagers or kids, and to just let it pass.  But I'm going to pose this question: WHY?  We're talking about behaviour that isn't tolerated anywhere else - in fact, if a kid acts that way in a schoolyard, they'd get a detention.  If somebody acted that way in somebody else's home, they'd get kicked out of it.  If they acted that way around strangers in public, people would avoid them.  So why should the internet be any different?

Here's a thought, for all those people creating games on Battle.net - if a player comes into your game, and starts acting like a jerk, boot him.  Treat him like he's just come into your home acting that way.  Because, in a way, he has.  If enough people boot the jerks, and keep booting them, the number of jackasses on places like Battle.net will probably start going down.
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September 2017