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Editorial Index

Recent Editorials:

I WANT my CD key!
12/13 - id's decision to use a CD key is justified

Report Card to the NIMF
12/1 - A response to the NIMF's report on violence in video games

Violence and Gaming
11/16 - Quake responsible for youth violence?

A Purist's Rules for FPS Multi-Player Design
11/5 - Keeping FPS' clutter-free

Rebuttal to Essobie's Editorial
10/15 - Grapple Controversy-Part Deux
The Woes of Being a Multi-Gamer
10/12 - Game Loyalty?
CTF != The Grappling Hook
10/7 - Q3 Arena sans grappling hook?
Jailbreak and Free Lunches
10/4 - Do mod makers "owe" people anything?
Pixels and Texels
9/13 - A look at the future of video cards
Yes, Camping is Evil!
9/2 - A response to "The Evils of Camping"!
Give Me Cable or Give Me Death!
8/31 - Will we all be LPBs one day?
Does Age Equal Maturity?
8/25 - A look at the age factor in gaming.
HeadHunting
8/23 - Mods and intellectual property
To Smack or Not to Smack
8/12 - Trash talking and the FFF!
The Evils of Camping
8/9 - We love to complain!
Trends in the Gaming Industry
7/13 - A look at the shift to multiplayer only games
32-bit Graphics Shows 3dfx's True Colors
7/12 - A continuation about the Voodoo3...
Is She 7 or 17?
6/30 - About the Voodoo3...
Doom 2000 and Q3A
5/26 - Fragmaster speaks his mind
The L33T D00D Multiplayer Tutorial
5/11 - Addressing their needs
Sue 'em All...
4/15 - The id Software Lawsuit
(more)

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The Decline of the Quake Empire
Egos, Intolerance, Lameness, and a general state of Decay...
  — by Chris "Mankovic" Stanton

Having been a gamer since the days of Jai Alai and Pong, friendly competition took place because you were normally in the same room with your competitor.

Now, however, it's an altogether different story. There are no longer faces to put with the names, which seem to change as often as someone can make a total ass of themselves on a server or public forum somewhere. Not to mention the "Whoops, I got caught using a Bot" logs that thankfully some of the more popular server admins are starting to publish.


Lameness...

... where did it all come from? Is it a manifestation of these past few years of the First Person Shooter genre? Or can it be attributed to a reflection of our own society?

I actually think it's neither of those reasons. But, rather than go "Freudian" on the topic, I'll just say that lameness is a "Perception" instead of an act. Some people consider the BFG to be a "Lamers" weapon, and I fail to understand the reasoning behind this. It is very much a part of the game and I can remember playing my first DM match and how awesome the power of the gun was. But, as time passes, so do "Perceptions".

The mod authors out there have been the single most influential factor in shaping the world of Quake. They publish one of their own ideas of how gameplay should be, and hope it catches on. Many mods offer more in the way of powerups and such, while others have removed them, or given the server admin the ability to do as they see fit.

Having said that, I do not intend to imply that these mod authors are at fault. But, rather it is a result of taking a game such as Quake and fragmenting it into many smaller versions that is at the core of the problem. All the time people join servers where teamplay mods are running and attempt to carry over those DM and single player traits, which more often than not starts the text on the left hand side of the HUD flying.

People will download a mod, install it, won't even bother to read the readme file, and attempt to play without a clue as to what it is they're supposed to accomplish. Not to imply that people new to a mod or game should not be allowed on a server, that would be ludicrous. It takes practice and time to learn all the finer points of a mod just to be somewhat effectual in it. But to hop on a server and interrupt a heated game with questions like "How do I use this grapple thingy" or "I cant get this Turret to work" is just asking for it.

On the opposite side of that coin is how the "seasoned" players often times treat the new blood that comes along. It's the new guys that keep your mods playable and ensures the longevity and success of the game. So maybe you veterans of Quake should back up and think before you adversely affect someone's perception of your mod and the Quake community.

Much of the behaviour that occurs on public servers could be stopped if more server admins were present more often, or would manage to give rcon access to some trusted, respectable players. Thankfully Id saw fit to offer password protection for servers to implement if needed. And the number of password protected servers is increasing at an astounding rate, offering a way for the lameness factor to be controlled. But, I fear that it may be too little, too late.


Intolerance

There isn't enough!

Go read any of the newsgroups, forums, and bulletin boards out there and notice the language, flaming, and general misuse of those mediums that is occuring. Where are all of the Admins?? A Zero Tolerance type of attitude is a good thing in cases such as these, but you have a lot of chair sniffing and peer pressure going on to the point where these weak kneed admin types are manipulated into pawns of inaction.


Egos...

... are what makes a FPS Deathmatch game go round. No disputing that. To be the best is something the majority of people strive for. However, you also have those types that play just for the "enjoyment" of the experience. Or so I've been told.

An Ego allowed to go on unchecked for too long will become a problem to those around them, because there is ALWAYS someone just a litle smarter, more resourceful, and just flat out better than you. The competition that arises from these clashes of egos have resulted in some of the most awesome matches I've ever had the honor to watch.

The problem occurs when someone is beaten and fails to recognize this in an honorable way. Some people know and realize their limitations, and choose to accept it and carry on, without a word said to those around them... It's these people I wish there were more of. People who say Good Game or nice shot, instead of yelling Bot, Camper, or any of a host of other currently self perpetuating insults.


Decay...

Think back just a mere one year ago, and remember the buzz and excitement that was in the air as Quake II was released. The people who had spent the prior two years playing Quake were just as giddy as the new guy getting Quake II as his first experience with an Id product.

I spent the better part of last year playing nothing but Quake II and some of my favorite mods associated with it, and along the way there seems to have been a shift in the type (quality) of player the game seems to have attracted - people who expect EVERYONE to do as they say (Rule Nazis) as well as those types who are hell bent on finding some way to cheat or ruin the game for everyone else.

This problem isn't unique to just Quake and the Quake community, it is affecting other games and genres as well. Even the newly released Tribes has already felt the wrath of the llama and his tactics. I know this problem won't go away overnight. But I feel that if more people who are in a position to do something about these and other types of unacceptable behaviours would actually get out of this "Passive" Apathy mode that seems to be the rage, things would definately improve a great deal...

-- Chris "Mankovic" Stanton




The views in this editorial are not necessarily those of PlanetQuake, it's staff, cheerleaders or herd of prize Peruvian llamas.

If you want to try your hand at writing an article or editorial, send it to gestalt@planetquake.com. All contributions are welcome.


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