200: A Griefer's Life for Me

A Griefer's Life for Me

It's easy to complain about griefers when they catch you in the last leg of a half-hour-long quest, but they provide a valuable service: They add some much needed spontaneity to experiences that would otherwise feel pretty routine. Brett Staebell recounts his World of Warcraft guild's maritime griefing efforts, and how their victims actually appreciated the ordeal.

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I'm all for griefing, when it's done well. Seeing it done poorly, however, is just embarrassing.
This was a nice article to read, it kept me enthralled for its entirety, albeit a short one. It's escapades like those that would almost entice me to play World of Warcraft... almost.

Griefing is fun sometimes, but only when it's creative--like what the article had.
This was a great read. I'm surprised that it only has one comment.

huh, i like foiling a griefers plans. nothing better than griefing a griefer.

Ahh, the old Honourable Griefer article. Filled with 'griefers make the game better, honest!' sentiment.

In his own words, any fun had by the opposing team was completely accidental and not the intention of the griefers at all. If the victims here had ragequit and petitioned for GM assistance - and it would be interesting to see those forums where the Alliance players all indicated their love of this event - then would this article have the same impact, or would it just be what we expected from someone writing about their griefing events?

I believe the formula at work here is pirates + anything = win

...even pirates + griefers

I'm curious though: how did you convince people to walk the plank when they couldn't understand what you were saying?

Clemenstation:
I believe the formula at work here is pirates + anything = win

...even pirates + griefers

I'm curious though: how did you convince people to walk the plank when they couldn't understand what you were saying?

Priests can Mind Control.

UnSub:
Ahh, the old Honourable Griefer article. Filled with 'griefers make the game better, honest!' sentiment.

In his own words, any fun had by the opposing team was completely accidental and not the intention of the griefers at all. If the victims here had ragequit and petitioned for GM assistance - and it would be interesting to see those forums where the Alliance players all indicated their love of this event - then would this article have the same impact, or would it just be what we expected from someone writing about their griefing events?

To be fair, in anything, there is a time and place for it. Ironically, I wouldn't wholly call what the article describes merely "griefing" in the derogatory sense. The author here is describing an honest to goodness high grade /prank/. There's nothing inherently wrong or objectionable about a good prank. But look at it this way.

A good prank can invite others in to laugh with the joke and join in on the fun. That's what happened in this World of Warcraft anecdote.

Most of what goes on in online games under the banner of griefing though, isn't a good prank. Most of it is just trying to break the game for other players to make them made and spoil any potential for fun they have. It doesn't allow them the opportunity to laugh along with the joke. They're just a meat target.

Typically, the old line holds true: trolls accuse everyone else of having no sense of humor, but everyone else is just trying to say "it's not that I have no sense of humor, it's just that your idea of humor stinks."

I enjoy griefing, but not in coordinated attacks.
Call of Duty is ripe with opportunities to destroy someone on personal levels. As a sniper, most of my griefing involves friendly snipers. I don't see anybody but me using smoke and stun grenades in order to annoy others. There is a lot you can do to bother people.
Griefing just gives the game a different flavor.

I really dont have a problem with griefers, be it this variety or the TF2 kind. Dont think a game should be taken to a level of seriousness where you end up screaming bloody murder at some guy for having some fun at your expense. Often i find the things they do pretty hilarious, as long as its witty and not in poor taste i say grief on.

You are evil! lol. Becoming friendly with the Bloodsail Buccaneers? Bloody Hell! :P

I remember the good old days in WoW when you could form a group with close friends and go raid Astranaar or Crossroads or where ever you wanted to. The people there would always join in despite their levels, and believe me there is nothing more hilarious than 30 or so players attacking you at once with little or no effect. It was all just fun and games; they would then call in their level 60 friends and a proper fight would ensue etc.

This cannot be done anymore; the game has changed completely. WoW has changed completely! I remember on the first day the Honour System was released and hundreds of horde players came crashing down on the Arathi Basin; it was a sight to behold! Now most places come equipped with unknown level elites making it nearly impossible for the average player, and no one generally goes to these places anymore because everyone is in a dungeon.

The game has changed, and I dont know if it is for the better...

CantFaketheFunk:

Clemenstation:
I believe the formula at work here is pirates + anything = win

...even pirates + griefers

I'm curious though: how did you convince people to walk the plank when they couldn't understand what you were saying?

Priests can Mind Control.

Well, that must've been a tad frustrating then.

The whole Griefing episode seems misguided - This article doesn't describe grief behaviour at all!

This sounds like creative, somewhat malicious gameplay. It sounds like a simple but entertaining innovation.

This sounds like fun.

This sounds like what I've done for years. Not everyone wants to walk to prescribed path, do the normal thing - for those it is the task of discovering new methods, new tricks, playing games within games and giving the gameworld some colour. Lots of red, for example.

You weren't griefing, that rum-soaked day. You were making up your own game as you went along, and I salute ye.

But get your facts straight! :D

That actually sounds like a lot of fun! Usually when I think of griefers, I think of people who get in your way on purpose, or try to make it impossible to play. This endeavour actually seems like what the developers wanted, which is really where MMOs shine: the players get to decide how the game is structured.

Most multiplayer games have a very rigid rule set of "go in to the server, try to complete the objective, leave". With WoW and other MMOs, the objective becomes "go in to a server, make some friends, find what you want to do, how you want to do it." I applaud the creative use of the PvP server here. In fact, I would actually participate in it (on the Alliance side, of course) if I ever played WoW. If the subscription fee is ever low enough, maybe I will.

<( ^ . ^ )>

This was the most entertaining article I've read in a while.

Good show, Mr. Staebell.

"You were playing the turtle-protecting game. They were playing the "look out, a naked assassin!" game."

If there needs be a justifaction for the existance of griefers then this is hard to beat.

I must admit I find it hard to see this as 'griefing'. Admittedly, during my time in WoW it would have sent me incendiary pretty quickly- but that was why I had the sense to play on a PvE server. If you're on a PvP server and the enemy does something you don't like- well, to quoute Admiral Beatty "That's quite alright, they're the enemy- that's their job".

Now, had you used a trick such as the classic pvp-enabled stealther who drops stealth at the right moment to intercept an innocent click and turn it into a horribly-mismatched PvP situation- something I've been on the wrong end of more than once- and combined it with your piratical activities on a PvE server, THAT would have been griefing. Mind you, even then in my case it would have been a brief grumble in Guild chat followed by my logging one of my 13 or so alts to do something else...

Thank goodness I escaped all that insanity, tbh :)

CantFaketheFunk:

Clemenstation:
I believe the formula at work here is pirates + anything = win

...even pirates + griefers

I'm curious though: how did you convince people to walk the plank when they couldn't understand what you were saying?

Priests can Mind Control.

I think the opposite faction can also understand /emotes from you.

Great read, thumbs up.
Griefing really can be fun, especially when you see the capslock-complaints in the forums afterwards.

Long Live Vae Victus.
Long live Thunderlord!

Sadly, I was but a starting character when you guys did this, but I was still a guildie. Still, this is still one of the best things about the game. how you can completely overrun some starting areas and take over. Yes, it won't last long with max level characters showing up, but it's still fun.
One of the other things the guild did that was fun, was the naked Stormwind runs to the Tram.

I think the big differnce here is that you were in a role-playing game, playing a role. Your intention may have been to cause grief but the other people seem to have interpreted it as you being pirates and doing what pirates do best. Personally I can't stand MMORPGs because I get very bored of most of the monotonous, grindy fun very quickly but this sort of thing, and the various unusual activities that I've read happen in EVE Online, tempt me towards them; it's something out-of-the-ordinary and unexpected that really couldn't happen in any other genre.

This reminds me of a Games for Windows article.

At the end of each magazine, two guys would compete against each other in various games. In this article, however, both of the regular writers were out and two substitute writers were used. The new guys decided to play Team Fortress Classic. The game type was the assault variant were you had to push a soccer ball into the other team's goal.

What these guys did was put themselves on the BLU team, have one person wait in the starting zone, get the ball back to their zone, then hold the starting zone door open and push the ball inside. In their words, "instant stalemate."

Now, the other team cannot get into their starting zone, so the ball is stuck there until one of their teammates can get it out. Friendly fire is off, however, so an ammo dispenser blocks one entrance while a sentry gun blocks the other. The entrance blocked by the sentry gun could only be accessed by going down a narrow hallway, which meant that getting close enough to destroy the gun was impossible. To make matters worse, the two new writers placed all kinds of annoying and insulting pictures on the walls of the hallway, so that the other team would constantly see them as they died.

What ended up happening was that RED and BLU teamed up against these two guys to get the ball out. At first, the medics of the RED team infected the BLU team, and then the infected BLU tried to get into their starting zone and infect the writers. This failed, but eventually, the BLU members died from the virus, respawned inside the starting zone, then pushed the two writers against the wall so that they could not move. This allowed RED to destroy the ammo dispenser and allow the ball to get out of the starting zone.

This was griefing, but like in this article, the other players came up with their own in-game solution to stop this. It can be funny, it seems, as long as people are able to stop you with in-game tools.

This is the kind of stuff that kept me playing WoW when I did, along with RP. The actual intended gameplay progression is just a tiresome grind, like the real life most people have and are trying to escape it somewhat, whether they admit it or not.

CURSE YOU THE ESCAPIST!!!!!!
now I wanna play WoW again :.(

I just resently started playing wow agian and resumeing the thing that makes it for me. Role Playing. Guilds agianst guilds in undieing wars of fun. Unforgoten Relms via WoW. But the people who greif events when people do this are not just anoying... there ass holes. People with nothing better to do then spam the screen with AoE spells and the chat box with unendingly repeated Macros with stupid messages. Do you support this kind of greifing? Not the idia of playing a joke, but the idia of destroying the mood of a naritive. Interupting a story by Yelling and throwing ice allover the place. Do you defend this?

Griefing, gaah its a topic. course this pirate thing is fun and i wished i was playing warcraft right now :P. I do hate when greifing ruins the essence of the game, for instance i was playing Zombie Master (a HL2 mod) when someone repeated to do something which meant it was impossible for the game to be won or lost, sure in hidesight it was funnyish but when its one person ruining others fun (or in this case 15) to the exceptionally annoying extent that you leave that server is depressing to see that theres nothing to do

Wareve:
there ass holes.

Amen, Rant Mode off. still a fun idea though XD

Junzo of Vae Victus here, awesome to see an article about the boat shenanigans. I've always been a griefer at heart, and seeing this article published is almost like a badge of honor.

I always feel like MMOs, as they go on, tend to become more sterile when all of the interesting things get patched out of them. In a way, griefers tend to force a developer to deal with the problems in a game. Once the developers have reduced everything to vanilla, then the griefers can move on to greener pastures.

i'd see that as a fun, RP-type warfare. You weren't graveyard camping lowbies into submission. You did stake a claim and kill anyone who came to dispute it. But you aren't pursueing individual players to a point of harassment, which is really what griefing is in my mind.

gods, I remember those times back then. I was part of a Horde guild that would do the same thing on the Demon Soul server (we were Calamitous Intent and then later Poor Impulse Control), we would get bored and go take over a ship.. or a town, or whatever. Those days did go away once the first expansion came out.. but they were some fun times.

Now days it is off to Eve for Space Pirate fun.. but some days I do miss how some things went in WoW.. using my Shadow Priest to mind control Alliance into the deep water was always fun.

i think griefers need to rethink where they should get their kicks, the fun of griefing is one sided and i would love to see you 'grief' in the real world where there isnt a thousand miles of land and sea seperating you and your victim

while i acknowledge that everyone gets their enjoyment from different things, if that is at the expense of other players, then you shouldnt do it, simple as

In my opinion, this article is apologetic rationalization for unsporting behavior, much along the same lines as the "information wants to be free" rationalizations of system crackers(get a hold of their information and see how they feel). Deliberately engaging in behavior such to prevent others from enjoying or playing a game is childish and bad, in my opinion. Further, as these activities are often directed against players of significantly lower level and skill, having no ability to retaliate, the griefers paint themselves as being nothing but bullies and potentially incompetent players themselves, as often they fall to player of equal level and gearing.

I'm sorry, I just cannot agree with any sentiment of this article. Social etiquette and social graces are just as applicable within the context of the internet and online gaming as they are in the context of real life. This is because one is still interacting with human beings, and regardless of the remoteness of it, we still have a recognizable identity over the internet, either by our screen name, avatar name, or sometimes just the pattern and mode of our text. You can still cause hurt and harm to the person, personally, with what you do or say.

TitsMcGee1804:
i think griefers need to rethink where they should get their kicks, the fun of griefing is one sided and i would love to see you 'grief' in the real world where there isnt a thousand miles of land and sea seperating you and your victim

while i acknowledge that everyone gets their enjoyment from different things, if that is at the expense of other players, then you shouldnt do it, simple as

I am a fellow griefier, even as i tire from lack of sleep right now your message is the same carebearism that has destroyed wow for me.

Thankfully cataclysm is going to bring most of this aspect that ive enjoyed so much back. Pwning Alliance worgen on stormscale EU.

well made thread even if the result of said griefing turnd against you.

geizr:
In my opinion, this article is apologetic rationalization for unsporting behavior, much along the same lines as the "information wants to be free" rationalizations of system crackers(get a hold of their information and see how they feel). Deliberately engaging in behavior such to prevent others from enjoying or playing a game is childish and bad, in my opinion. Further, as these activities are often directed against players of significantly lower level and skill, having no ability to retaliate, the griefers paint themselves as being nothing but bullies and potentially incompetent players themselves, as often they fall to player of equal level and gearing.

I'm sorry, I just cannot agree with any sentiment of this article. Social etiquette and social graces are just as applicable within the context of the internet and online gaming as they are in the context of real life. This is because one is still interacting with human beings, and regardless of the remoteness of it, we still have a recognizable identity over the internet, either by our screen name, avatar name, or sometimes just the pattern and mode of our text. You can still cause hurt and harm to the person, personally, with what you do or say.

It's his subscriptipn, he aint violating the therms of use. In fact he is playing by the rules. Social etiquette and grace can screw itself majorly.

Meh. Trying to paint some kind of strained Dennis the menace reasoning of "aww shucks mister we're just up to shennanigans" onto griefing, and then trying to make it out like somehow you actually make the game better by doing these things is kind of weak.

It's yet another griefer trying to get validation from the rest of us.

People don't grief for some kind intellectual pursuit, or because they're somehow better than the masses and are these avant garde rebels that we should all secretly be looking up to, or to make a game more exciting (as you've all heard the typical troll and griefing excuses).
The only people that grief are people that are unhappy with their real lives, they feel powerless, so they use the anonymity of the internet to try to feel like "something" and to get some attention. Same thing as kids who misbehave constantly for attention. People who like to feel like they've won something by getting someone angry instead of making themself happy like the rest of us do.
Most griefers seem to just resort to "well if you don't go along with me griefing you then you're a pussy!" which is such moronic cyclical logic, "you have to let me do this whaaaa!? let me pick on you!".

If something good came out of any of what you did, then it's just a positive comment on those players reacting to it, not to your guild or you.

You might be asking yourself why you "need" to do this kind of thing in the first place, and why you need us to pay attention to you.

The only good that's every come out of griefing is two things.
1: highlighting something the developers needs to fix so it can't happen anymore.
2: complete and utter unintentional accident.

2, would be what your article falls under. It's like you're trying to brag about having littered by throwing out a drink from a restaurant and it accidentally landing on a cigarette that was about to start a forrest fire and saying "hey see, I'm a hero for littering!".

seriously weak. These kinds of reasonings by greifers always boils down to "well if we can get away with doing it then it's okay" and "they don't MAKE us have to be nice to eachother so you're a wuss if you expect us to".
Anybody who uses that kind of reasoning is just stuck back in middle school mentality. Kind of time for people to start growing up at some point, and if you don't want to, awesome, just keep it amongst your own kind and stop trying to either drag everyone else into it with you, or getting us to validate you.

 

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