Responsibility of an Online Gamer

I play Destiny. I enjoy playing Strikes and in the Crucible, the online player interaction modes of the game. Strikes are three person teams and Crucible is always player versus player, in teams or everyone for themselves. I try. I may not be great or even good, but I try. If I am playing with you or even against you I feel a responsibility to do my best. Which is why I am so disappointed in players who do not try or go out of their way to make more work for everyone else.

Today was one of those days. I do not report players unless they are doing something so egregious to ruin the game for me. Halo and Call of Duty I reported people all of the time, no idea why, but dochey behavior seemed to be the theme for those games. Until today I had not encountered irresponsible gamers to that extent playing Destiny. Today, several players were reported.

Not for being better than me, I am fine with that. In fact when someone is better than me I try to emulate them if playing on their team or try to take them out if against them. I reported them for wasting my time, degrading my enjoyment of the game, and for, of all things, not taking part. Yes, not taking part. If you join a Strike where the game is set up to challenge three players and you hide and take no part, you are being selfish, unfair to the other players, making things more difficult, and being a douche. If the Strike had been one of the difficult ones I might have understood, but this was the easiest of Strikes for a three person team. So to hide, not take part in any way-not even to revive dead players-is truly douche behavior.

That this happened twice in one hour, really set me on edge. I put the game up and let our boy play. And that…well let me put it this way, I do not think children are mature enough to play online games. I don’t care about how mature your child is, children do not have a concept of responsibility to the group. They focus on what they want and they have poor impulse control.

Worse, video games are often used as baby sitters, thus the child plays unattended and there is nobody their to teach them how to be responsible gamers and good gamers. Not my children. I looked up from my book, Seventh Son for those interested, and watched my son screwing around in one of the harder Strikes in Destiny. He was hoping about. He was not trying to take out the boss or when he was he was trying to get “creative” and he most definitely was not being a good player.

He is grounded from online games for a week. I took the controller from him, finished the game-I was not leaving the other gamer in the lurch. Turned off the game and then we had a talk about being a good gamer. This is not a new talk for him. Or it shouldn’t have been, but the connection between being a good table top gamer and being a good gamer in a video game was not there. In his head, he was having fun, and doing stuff to help-i.e. shoot here, shoot there, hop, jump, die, and then wonder why team lost. He did not understand why I let him screw around in story missions, but not in online play. At least he didn’t until I put him in their shoes…

“How do you feel when people don’t do their best in games you play?”

Then the light bulb went off. We will see, but when we see I will be there watching. I may have to deal with irresponsible gamers, but I will be damned if I am going to unleash another into the world.

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5 thoughts on “Responsibility of an Online Gamer

  1. As a gaming dad, this is a big issue with me. We let out kids play games, and sometimes they get to play as a group, and it is difficult to get them to get along with each other. I think that we are just not at the place where online anything is wise, but the focus is definitely on ensuring that they can be well behaved. This sort of thing may not happen until they are much older, but I think it’s healthy to recognize that from the start. I commend you on your approach. We as parents have as much to learn about rearing well behaved gamers as they do about behaving as such.

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    1. Ankoku1331

      Thank you. It is my hope that all gamer parents take the time to raise good gamers as part of raising good children. If nothing else playing games with children helps form bonds and allows a whole host of life lessons to be taught at the table. Alas, my experiences online seem to indicate that many people just assume that children will learn how to be good gamers on their own. It’s not happening. 😦

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  2. Pingback: How I Spent My Summer: Games | Speaking Out on Life

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