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Wow, great response, Mark. Lots of food for thought there....
A few explanations I've come up with over the years...One, most people you meet online are decent people. However, you don't tend to notice or remember "decent people" nearly as well as the person who causes you pain or anguish. Thus, you can drive 90 miles in peaceful traffic, but if you get run off the road by a single idiotic driver, you're liable to say something like "The people in this state drive like nuts!!!" or some such. In other words, you're making a hasty generalization. I'd say that jerky behavior is compounded by the fact that these people generally WANT the attention, and being obnoxious and rude is a cheap way to get it. New players (noobs) are typically easy targets, since they are still learning the game and probably insecure about their performance anyway.
Indeed one tends to remember the people who stand out in the wrong way.
I've also noticed a pattern in many of the people I know who hate online gaming, but who love other types of gaming. I won't name names, but it seems to be that folks who have "big personalities," or leadership qualities--who generally work hard on their image and public persona--tend to hate them. I think this is because no matter how popular or well-respected you are outside that game, inside the game you're just another noob. You're expected to give up your own ideas about how to play the game as "noobish" and learn to imitate the current champs (down to the precise set of gear and battle strategies!). Furthermore, the aspects that make you popular on the outside--good speaking skills, witty persona, etc.--are detrimental in the game. No one wants to hear your jokes, stories, thoughts, or experience your personality (try it and see how long it takes someone to tell you to shut up and everyone else agree with him). They just want you to execute a precise sequence of actions over and over and over again. You're a cog, so get over it and shut up. My response to that is--oh, hellz naw!
Having my big personality crushed within mere seconds is something I'd rather not endure :P But my ego isn't that big....
Now beginning as a noob and getting teased a little (in a humorous way) about being a noob is okay with me but people being downright horrible, and I mean real terrible isn't my cuppa tea. If you join bash other noobs in a horrible witty intelligent yet crushing way people tend to forget you're a noob and you earn ' respect ' or whatever is used in the game. Executing precise sequences of actions and being increasingly good at them can be good fun - even when you have a nice conversation on the side. But the whole experience can be very shallow, too shallow...
I eventually learned what it would take to become an accepted member of the WOW community--quiet, obedient, always on, generous with loot, and very knowledgeable of whatever role you've taken on. That last bit doesn't amount to "critical thinking" in the least. It amounts to going online (or studying your fellow raid members like yourself) and getting whatever set of equipment is the best (this can take weeks or even months of hard work--work, not play.) Then you must watch videos of a dungeon or raid over and over again, studying every detail of the "pattern" and "boss fight" so that nothing will be unexpected. In short, you're trying to make it as much a rote operation as possible.
Not my cuppa tea again.... it's too much like work, studying behaviour. It can be good fun though for others. If there's more of a quest and intrinsic storyline you get to experience with a group of friends talking about what you experience solving problems and puzzles in the mean time is something that suits me way better than just being obedient and leveling up.
To me, it'd be like sitting down with a dungeon master before a session and grilling him on every last detail of a dungeon *before* you enter. Who are the bosses? Where are they? What are their patterns? What's the easiest and fastest--most efficient--way to get in and out of this dungeon with the best loot? Oh, and *stop the chatter, everyone*--this is serious business. To be fair, the guy who keeps calling everyone a " gay $@$ $!!$-tard" is permitted to speak, because he's so funny, hahahaha. But everyone else shut up.
Does *that* sound like fun to you???
I'm off for a quick round of Dangerous Seed on the Megadrive..... ouch I which it's all in boxes :P
PS3: MarkVergeer | Xbox 360: Lactobacillus P | Wii: 8151 3435 8469 3138
Armchair arcade Editor | Pixellator | www.markvergeer.nl
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