The Inevitable Armageddon, Online Multiplayer

We’ve come a long way since the beginning of gaming with Dabney and Busnell’s first video game Pong. Throughout the years, no matter what device players choose, be it a PS3, PS4 or indeed even an Xbox One. A glitch so terrifying, so dangerous, has evolved into the quickly approaching Armageddon. I am, of course, talking about online multiplayer.

Last week I decided to reattempt the online multiplayer of Call Of Duty Ghosts, I recently found that I could actually really enjoy the multiplayer if I had a friend with me; so we ventured into a world unknown. Treyarch, famous for the Call of Duty franchise, has built a safe sequel that doesn’t add nor damage the series reputation. But there’s a problem that neither Treyarch or PlayStation can fix. The players.

Firstly, I don’t normally have my mike unless I’m working on a co-op mission, such as the game’s Alien Extinction mode. But you can still hear other players unless you mute them, this is what I keep finding myself doing. My hand at the start of every match inevitably reaching for the ‘mute all’ option. Let me give you an example:

I was playing the game mode Infected which fans will inevitably remember from Modern Warfare 3, an earlier addition to the franchise, which pits players against one person who will try and infect other players with his/her knife. I only had to mute one player in that match which is a significant improvement to the usual twenty or so. The player was swearing at a silent player who had infected him, I don’t believe in reporting a player but… Yes. The match finished and my friend and I listened as one by one each player started arguing against the other, swearing, name calling, and threat making.

We left the match promptly and searched for a friendlier game. I.E Battlefield 4. It’s not the poor quality of the games that let the Call of Duty franchise down, it’s the aggressive threat making of the competitive players. But it’s not just Call of Duty. No.

This is evident in a lot of online multiplayer and last time I checked online multiplayer was for making friends and creating bonds which was what gaming was originally about. Undoubtedly people will agree with this, but we all succumb to it, even when we don’t realise. We swear when we die, we grunt when we loose a kill streak, but players are starting to take things too personally. Another example was in another Call of Duty match, I received a friend request from a player in the match whom I didn’t speak to, another player received the same request; and started ripping into the player.

I accepted the request invited him to a party and joined a separate game, these ‘sons of a b’s’ are what is wrong with the gaming community, leave it for the clan matches; or indeed you can always ‘piss off’ yourselves.

That’s why I’m looking forward to E3 2014, not the competitive online FPS (first person shooter), but the games that encourage relationship building, such as  FPS Evolve. Games have always been about one thing, friends, Sony and the game developers can’t fix this; it’s up to us. If we’re not going to change then how are games going to Evolve?