Or at least the ones that go online apparently. I hear this a lot for players on Halo, when their own teammates will babble random vulgarities that possess absolutely no grammatical coherency. Instead of inciting images of a proper British meal, tea bags suddenly become insulting. Any word composed of more than four letters is conveniently forgotten, and people who could potentially be sweet and gentle in person are transformed into little monsters spitting hot lava from their dirty mouths. This is no isolated incident; playing Modern Warfare 2 on the PS3 brings me the same results. What’s interesting is that it always sounds like the same person; a little 13 year old boy who sounds as if they have recently started struggling through the process of puberty. Maybe it’s a first person shooter phenomenon?
What is it about these games that bring out such horrible conversational skills? Do they honestly think that holding a semi-automatic weapon in a digital world actually makes them “badass”? Not even just first person shooters, but any sort of game from racing to rpg’s. I’m not going to lie, interrupt me while I’m on multiplayer or a ridiculous boss battle and I will throw the nearest projectile at your head. But that doesn’t mean I can’t be civil: I’ll apologize for that act. Later. After I’ve pwned some n00b ass.
Come to think of it, it’s not even restricted to video games. Starcraft players in our PC restricted war simulations? Just as bad. Only without the audio. Players will lash out in texted fury not only if they lose, but even if they win and they simply believe their opponent to be too far below them. It’s basically another outlet for trolls and their pent up nerd rage.
Rage. That’s the word. It’s basic, primal, and smears its name across every platform in existence. No game is safe, no gamer is too mature. The power that we hold in our clammy hands corrupts all of our minds and we regress to our inner angry child, demanding that the world listen to our woes as we stomp our feet and scream till we’re red in the face. Hell hath no fury like a raging geek pumped on caps lock.
UPDATE: Of course I find this article *after* I post my shpeal. Thanks, Gamepro. http://www.gamepro.com/article/features/217085/the-psychology-of-anonymity/