Quick guide to online gaming – the polite way

Quick guide to online gaming – the polite way
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We all know that anonymity online can sometimes lead to missteps. And the world of online gaming is no exception. Often, all it takes is one bad teammate or adversary to ruin the game for everyone. Here are a few tips to avoid joining the dark side of gaming.

1. Don’t cheat

Cheating, hacking… whatever you want to call it, it’s the cardinal sin of gaming. As tempting as it might be to use a hack that would let you aim more precisely or collect money faster, don’t give in. When one person cheats, everyone loses. Not to mention that when you cheat, you run the risk of being exiled from the community, or even having your right to play on the game’s servers officially revoked. If ever you find yourself face to face with a cheater, you have two choices: go somewhere else, or denounce them and hope for an administrator appear like an angel of redemption, to banish them forever.

2. Be patient with newbies

Playing with a beginner is always a test of patience. They ask questions you’ve heard at least fifty times before (“how do I jump?” to which you might be tempted to respond RTFM); they make you lose the game, they take sooooooooooo long to understand the controls… These are the moments when it’s important to remind yourself that these are generally well-intentioned people who just need a bit of guidance to get out of the newb-zone. And don’t forget that even you – although it might have been a long time ago – were once like them. Treat them the way you would have wanted to be treated.

3. Watch your language

A little verbal sparring before (or after) a game can often help set the tone. Think of Arthur being wound up by his master of arms in the series Kaamelott (video in French). However, it’s also very easy to get carried away, and start throwing around insults we won’t repeat here. These words can be offensive, can ruin the experience for other players and are just generally unacceptable. If you absolutely need to express your frustration, you can always follow the example of Captain Haddock from Tintin. Being called a platypus or a waffle iron hurts a lot less than some other things…

4. Keep the volume down

This tip applies as much online as in real life. The last thing your roommate wants to hear after midnight is you yelling into your mic like a hockey fan after an overtime goal. Be just as careful with your mic on public servers. We’ve all had the pleasure of hearing a stranger’s loud laughter booming in our ears.  If you recognize yourself in this description: pleeease keep the volume down.

5. Don’t be a show off

When you’re proud – of your pimped out car, for example, or your new baby – it can be hard not to flaunt it. The same reflex exists among gamers: in forums and LAN parties, players strutting around showing off their fancy machines is common – all too common. Because in the end, a computer that’s full of coloured lights and kitted out with a graphics card as big as a brick will definitely put a dent in your wallet, but it says nothing about what kind of skill you have as a gamer.

6. Don’t feed the trolls

It’s one of the oldest adages on the Internet: don’t feed the trolls. Reacting and paying attention to a troll is playing right into their hands and giving them just what they want (read: causing chaos). If someone is having fun throwing insults around and you’re in the line of fire, don’t react. Ignoring a troll is the best way to get rid of them, even if it seems counterintuitive. If their provocations go ignored, the troll will eventually wander off to hunt new prey elsewhere.

7. Have fun

Never forget, we’re all online to have fun. A simple GLHF (good luck, have fun) at the beginning of a game and a little GG (good game) after a defeat can make all the difference.

Edited on 21 November 2017