If the term is unknown to you, ‘Gaming Etiquette’ is the collective term for the unwritten social norms and rules that players follow within the world of video games, when interacting with others. Said etiquette exists to ensure that each player’s experience is easy-going and enjoyable. It is supposed to prevent people from playing in a way that is a detriment to others around them. It is supposed to be a guide for people to follow, simply to make playing with others more fun and less messy.
What gaming etiquette exists to do is, unfortunately, not always what it achieves. There are a few reasons why this is so, and these are usually caused by certain kinds of players. One such type is the newbie, the player who hasn’t been around long enough to have had time to adjust and learn the etiquette. Dave Cook from VG24/7’s own example of gaming etiquette that he experiences regularly “… as a big CoD fan is people on your team not stealing your care packages. You just don’t do it. But I think as the rules are unwritten then they can be broken by newcomers”.
What do you think some of the unspoken rule for players to learn when playing with the gaming community?
Remember You’re Playing with Real People
When you’re playing a game online, you’re not just playing with the computer anymore. You’re playing with real people! Some people tend to forget this and think it’s perfectly okay to start using insults, ignoring the main objectives to go off and do their own thing, or just acting really selfishly, trying to get all the glory for themselves.
Shouting out insults and being a selfish player and a sore loser gets you nothing but hate and maybe even banned from a server. Supporting your team, helping those who need it and even something as simple as saying “good game” at the end of the match can get you new friends and a good reputation. It’s pretty obvious which one is more desirable!
It’s a team effort, and you’re playing with real people who want to relax and have a good time, just like you!
Don’t Use Cheats and Hacks
The first and most obvious reason not to do this is that it’s against the rules of pretty much every online game and can get you banned when you’re found out. It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.
Secondly, this takes the fun out of it for everyone else! And really, you don’t even gain that much from it except for some extra points and a lot of hate from frustrated players. It’s not worth it. The game is always more fun when you’re using your own skills!
Help Out the Newbies
Do you remember when you started playing the game? You were probably pretty bad at it, getting killed a lot and not really understanding the controls or how things worked. You also probably wanted other people to help you out.
So instead of insulting or taking advantage of someone who’s obviously struggling, take a little bit of time to give them some advice you wish you had when you were starting out. You could tell them what they’re doing wrong or suggest how they can improve – in a nice way, of course!
Remember to Have Fun!
It is only a game, of course. Taking things too seriously and getting mad over every little kill takes all the fun out of playing a game and annoys your teammates who are just playing to relax and have a good time. Honestly, if you’re spending all your time yelling and rage quitting, you’re just making yourself look pretty bad and no one’s going to want to play with you. So just have fun!
What Do I Do if I’m the One Being Trolled?
Don’t know what a troll is? A troll is someone on the internet who wants nothing more than to tease you or make your life a bit harder. Basically it’s the internet term for a bully in gaming or forum social circles. It’s easy enough to deal with trolls if you know how.
If there’s one thing trolls love, it’s getting attention. If they’re harassing you, don’t let it get to you and definitely don’t give them the satisfaction of getting a reaction out of you. Make sure your friends ignore them too. Trolls are never worth your time or your effort.
Sometimes trolls just can’t be ignored, especially if you’re playing a game where the troll can constantly target you in a way that can kill your character.
When this happens, it’s best to just block them. Thankfully, pretty much all online games will have this feature. With the click of a button your life can be made a lot easier. For example, in World of Warcraft it’s as simple as going into the text box and typing /ignore [player name].
Unfortunately, trolls can sometimes be persistent. If you block them, they might just come back with a new account or a new character to hassle you all over again. When this happens you can simply report their account, which usually results in a ban that they can’t get around. That user is permanently blocked from making a new account, and your life will be a lot easier.
For example, games like Call of Duty or Battlefield run through a program called Steam, as you’re probably aware. To report a player using Steam, click on “View” on the top toolbar, select “Players”, and search for their profile name under the list of recent players.
Once you’ve found them, you can go to their profile, and in the top right hand corner you have the option to report them. This will work for any game you run through Steam.
Find a New Server
The thing about online games is that there are a lot of different servers to play on. If you don’t like one server, or if a troll is particularly persistent, you can simply message your friends and direct them to a new server. In some games, you can also password protect the server so that only you and your friends can access it.
Finding a new server may be a little bit difficult at first, but look around. Do your friends play on any other servers? A quick Google search for servers might reveal a community or guild with similar interests to you, who play on a separate server.
Find a New Game
This might seem a bit extreme, but you have to remember there are a lot of different games out there. If you’re not enjoying a game because of a troll, maybe it’s time to move as far away as possible and try a new game. It might take a while to get used to the new game, but you could meet a lot of new friends and find that you even enjoy this game a lot more than the old one. Of course, this is a last resort and hopefully it won’t have to come to this!
Games are Supposed to Be Fun
The next time you’re playing an online game, keep all these things in mind. Remember to be considerate of everyone you’re playing with, and if someone decides to troll you and ruin your day, you always have a lot of options at your disposal to get rid of them and keep on playing.
Whatever your game of choice is, just remember: the most important thing is not to take it too seriously and just have fun! That’s why games were created, after all!