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A small social Commentary: Online multiplayer gaming vs solo and in-house multiplayer gaming


Clephas

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There was a time when online multiplayer was the dream of a bunch of idiot techies who thought it was the best idea it was possible for anyone to have.

Those were the days, lol.

I'm not kidding... I can mark the general era when I stopped playing games with other people to the days when online multiplayer superseded in-the-house multiplayer and split-screen coop games.  For better or worse, I don't like playing games with strangers.  It is uncomfortable, and I never have time to get used to people's habits before I play with them.  So, I pretty much dropped about a third of all the game genres I used to like because the online multiplayer had become the center of their experience.  I still occasionally buy and play FPS games, but I wait until I can get them used for under twenty dollars because that is all their solo campaigns are worth.  I still keep an eye on the strategy game market, but more and more often, the online portions are coming to dictate the designs for the main games (the removal of pause and fast forward functionality is one obvious one for RTS games). 

So... when I take a look around the gaming market, I see a massive portion of it that I'm not even remotely interested in simply because it went in a direction I couldn't follow due to my personality.  VNs and classic jrpgs are comforting because there is no possibility for a stranger to come in and screw up your playing experience (one of the main reasons I hate online multiplayer).  There is no need to compete with faceless strangers for resources in a Romance of the Three Kingdoms game, and I don't have to deal with people screaming about 'noobs' when I go back to replay Suikoden II.

In  other words, I loathe the poisonous nature of online gaming.  Sure, there are positive elements, but the peer pressure tends to resemble the worst of my high school and part time job experiences.  I go to games for stress relief, not to have my stress increased, lol.

I guess it is because I go to games to manage stress as much as for enjoyment that I can't stand online gaming.  Social elements of gaming are like a poison pill to me and to a lot of solo gamers... so why is it that they continue to add social elements even to games that really don't have a need for it?  I chose to pick up No Man's Sky when it became apparent that even though it was a shared world, there was no need to actually deal with other people to enjoy it.  For once, someone is using game servers for something other than proxy socialization and petty one-upsmanship under the guise of gaming... and I'm immensely gladdened by that fact.

 

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Hmm, I wonder what other people have to say on this.

One thing I noticed after coming back to Mmorpg's is how weak the interaction is between you and other players. After spending time on forums I'm like 'nope, not for me'.

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1 hour ago, Chronopolis said:

Hmm, I wonder what other people have to say on this.

One thing I noticed after coming back to Mmorpg's is how weak the interaction is between you and other players. After spending time on forums I'm like 'nope, not for me'.

Depends on how you handle it, I guess. I was a guild leader in some games, and it's a really neat and fun experience to see your little circle growing up, getting more people, helping newcomers and seeing you and your main guildies being able to complete endgame raids quicker and more efficiently over time.

As someone who generally plays priests, it's nice to chat with someone for hours on end and when we're raiding seeing your reliable mates doing god's work in DPS, or seeing how much better the new tank can hold aggro with the new gear we had to raid for three days to get.

I never really got hardcore, but those were some really fun times. Though I basically roleplay a doormat when I'm playing these types of games, since I find it's the best way to hold a group friendly and nice.

It really is about the social aspects, and playing can be a blast. If you're just queuing with random people you don't know and each of you is doing your thing without contact, I can see it being pretty boring, though. 

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I can certainly relate to Kaguya's statement. In my last (and hopefully I mean that in both its main senses) MMORPG experience in SWTOR, I spent a ton of time as a main tank and usual raid leader of a not-great-but-not-terrible raiding guild. When everybody around is pulling their weight and you're getting through tough stuff together, it's an exhilarating experience. Even if someone makes a mistake, when you've got a good group, everyone is supportive, fully realizing that they make their own mistakes too. And then when you get through it all, the sweet feeling of a hard-won team victory is absolute joy.

But I can also relate to the increased stress Clephas talks about, even in the same context. When someone consistently isn't pulling their weight (like that one guy who just can't get his act together; you know the one), it's a huge amount of stress for everyone involved: the poor leader who has to kick him out, everybody watching from the sidelines, and worst of all that poor guy himself who just wanted to play a game. And there are plenty of other similar stress-inducing situations, in that scenario and others, in that style of game and others.

And you know, I can sympathize with that guy who just wants to play a game. As a general rule, I prefer my games easy rather than hard. I've never played Dark Souls, and I probably never will. Yes there's a thrill to overcoming big challenges, but if something is truly beyond me, or even just mostly beyond me or the amount of effort I'm willing to put into it, then it becomes mostly frustrating and unfun. I get that experience a lot, especially in multiplayer FPS games where I run with a group that is, frankly, not that good. We play the Trials of Osiris most weekends in Destiny, and even on our best weekends, we don't win all the way through the card (you need 9 wins and at most 3 losses to manage that; our best yet is 8 wins...). That means, every time single, the last game we play is a loss. It kind of sucks. I don't like losing, and sometimes we get mad at each other, or feel guilty over screwing something up. Not exactly my definition of fun.

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After all those years of gaming, I can only state one thing - when games became pure business, both for creators and players themselves, everything ended.You definitely know something's wrong, when a computer game becomes like a second job; at least, you should by then.

If it's not fun anymore - don't play it. If you're getting stressed out, instead enjoying it - stop playing it. If you feel like other people are taking away from your own enjoyment - leave them behind and find something else (propably better) to do. I had my share of bad experiences, caused by feeling "forced" to do things because X/Y/Z required it, rather than playing for my own personal enjoyment. It's also a direct indicator, developers have failed at designing the game and put other, less important aspects over fun and engaging player experience; worst of all, they're mostly unable to see such mistakes being done and repeated.

I quit mmorpg's and I'm not planning on going back. I'd advise you all to do the same - there's literally nothing those games have to offer nowadays, except for a massive timesink; time, you could use doing more constructive things, like reading books or visual novels :makina:. Trust me - once you stop giving a damn and let it go, life becomes so much better.

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22 hours ago, Kaguya said:

If you're just queuing with random people you don't know and each of you is doing your thing without contact, I can see it being pretty boring, though. 

Actually it's pretty fucking awesome. Monster Hunter is all about having a blast together but not necessarily talking (MHTri had minimal interaction and it was great how you developed amazing synergy with people you'd never see again for a common goal. Journey is beautiful *because* you have no idea who is the person helping you and you do your thing and then you do their thing but it's so much more genuine than games that try so hard to create this feeling that you're sharing something with someone.

Most MMORPGs don't embrace just how lonely they all are. They're so functional, so perfect that every other player becomes nothing more than a kinda complicated NPC, but an NPC nevertheless.

The best MMORPGs out there are the dysfunctional ones.

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9 hours ago, Palas said:

Actually it's pretty fucking awesome. Monster Hunter is all about having a blast together but not necessarily talking (MHTri had minimal interaction and it was great how you developed amazing synergy with people you'd never see again for a common goal. Journey is beautiful *because* you have no idea who is the person helping you and you do your thing and then you do their thing but it's so much more genuine than games that try so hard to create this feeling that you're sharing something with someone.

Most MMORPGs don't embrace just how lonely they all are. They're so functional, so perfect that every other player becomes nothing more than a kinda complicated NPC, but an NPC nevertheless.

The best MMORPGs out there are the dysfunctional ones.

I actually don't get it. It sounds pretty boring to me, to be honest.

It's like one of those "since you're in the desert already, might as well make a cult to worship the thirstiness" type of things to me. 

I also don't see the appeal of spending my time to synergyse with someone I'll never talk to. 

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On 8/9/2016 at 9:52 PM, Kaguya said:

Depends on how you handle it, I guess. I was a guild leader in some games, and it's a really neat and fun experience to see your little circle growing up, getting more people, helping newcomers and seeing you and your main guildies being able to complete endgame raids quicker and more efficiently over time.

As someone who generally plays priests, it's nice to chat with someone for hours on end and when we're raiding seeing your reliable mates doing god's work in DPS, or seeing how much better the new tank can hold aggro with the new gear we had to raid for three days to get.

I never really got hardcore, but those were some really fun times. Though I basically roleplay a doormat when I'm playing these types of games, since I find it's the best way to hold a group friendly and nice.

It really is about the social aspects, and playing can be a blast. If you're just queuing with random people you don't know and each of you is doing your thing without contact, I can see it being pretty boring, though. 

If there's one thing I really enjoyed about WoW, it's the raiding guild I use to run with. We were kinda sorta on the casual side of progression, but we still had a good balance of fun and competitiveness. I made a lot of good memories with those guys back in the day, and I'm still friends with some of my guildees on FB. In fact, they have a reboot going on right now that I'll be joining in on during the Winter. Since most of us have more real-life stuff going on than we did back in the day, I'm pretty sure we're going full casual for the reboot.

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Most of you seem to talk about your experiences with MMORPGs. I stopped playing those 10 years ago, playing with friends is fun. But the gameplay is still so... Mind numbingly bland in the long run. If I want that light relaxing experience I'd rather use my time reading or something even slightly productive. I don't regret playing these games. But I can't play them anymore, they just don't feel satisfying anymore. So I've mostly spent my gaming time playing MP FPS and the like.

I usually play harder games. Because I don't play MP to de-stress, but to be in the zone. So they need to be challenging and rewarding (If they aren't shit). Toxic people are indeed everywhere, but you become thick skinned against them.  Shit talking is a skill as well haha. It's just competitive play (clans aside) online without consequences for failing. It's just a playground for the sake of playing.

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