Hating Multiplayer Creep

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I personally use games to when I need to get away from my friends. And actually when I do play games with friends it often won't be that great, then the little annoying things they do as gamers (usually because they suck in some way or another) just ends up driving me fucking mad.

That said it's never ended a friendship, and some games have added to them. In fact I've made some awesome friends through fighting games.

Weirdest thing in the world, and this happens a LOT, it has happened with everything from rooms full of post-party/rave people to just a few close friends, to even naked-post-coital-girlfriends; people seem to love watching me play single player games.

I really don't know what it is, I've heard everything from how proficient and brutal I am, to how absurdly funny I can be, to my cinematic approach to camera movement, but seriously I've had a lot of people watch me play single player games and enjoy it...

I don't even know what you'd call that, but that's honestly some of the best times I've had involving more than one person and video games, and a big part of it was they couldn't fuck it up in any way.

Also I got a great deal of joy watching close friends play Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, I loved it's analysis system, and as I had already beat it multiple times by the time I was showing it to friends I was able to analyze them through it. Plus it's about movie length and watching certain females react in genuine horror at certain points was oddly satisfying.

Highly recommend that game, it's the only thing I miss about the Wii.

warrenEBB:
The introvert is not fully human. Society abhors the introvert because he doesn't contribute to society. it's nothing new.

I remember being thunderstruck by this passage near the end of The Hero with a Thousand Faces:
(skip to the near-final chapter "The Function of Myth, Cult, and Meditation")

Within the realm of science(psychology) introversion is normal, rare but normal. Introverts gain their energy from within rather than from others like extroverts do. Some famous introverts are Abe Lincoln, Obama, and Einstein. Most scientists and writers are introverts. Most introverts are deep thinkers and the philosophers of ancient times. That's a pretty backwards thinking book you've read.

I've not played an online multi-player game since Eve online and I stopped that years ago. Before that, it was Counter-Strike and I stopped that because people were dicks and I wasn't having any fun.

It annoys me when companies inject Multi-player into games which don't need it... then worst of all make the Multi-player part invade the single player experience or the Achievements.

Fable 2 and more-so in Fable 3, lots of achievements won't unlock without multi-player - Fable 3, there's even a Demon door which won't open unless I kiss another player... WTF!!!
So first of all I have to play with a complete stranger, or a friend (most of my friends are Male) then I have to kiss them? To unlock content in a game I've purchased as a single player experience where I'm the hero of Albion?

Mass Effect 3, It's supposedly very difficult bordering on impossible to get enough of the galactic war points unless you play the multi-player (apparently, as soon as I heard that, I cancelled my purchase ) I LOVE the Mass Effect games and always complete them to pretty much 100% or at least get the best ending possible.

I am a completionist. I like to find and do everything in my single player experiences (With games that I like anyway). They do not however involve me dealing with other people. I deal with them during the day. On my down time I want to be in my in my own little world. That own little world does not involve other people.

If I wanted a multi-player experience, I'd play Mario Kart.

Keep multi-player out of my single player games!

A lot of the wasteful multiplayer creep on otherwise perfectly good 1 player games is just another form of DRM control and soulless corporate marketing. If a significant portion of "the experience" is multiplayer then it might decrease piracy and if the multiplayer bits catch on then it'll further hook the little chumps, er, customers into the brand for more DLC.

What's that? It pisses all over our 1 player customers? Screw them anyway, we already got their money.

Borderlands is totally for multiplayer tis true. I have to say the concept of society while unavoidable rather makes me sick. It's like popular kids at high school. What makes them so able to set rules for what's acceptable and what's not? I'd rather just live my my own rules which serves me well, thank you very much, but I digress.
I enjoy playing multiplayer diablo 2, and not Borderlands with my boyfriend and my sister. All three of us are gamers and we enjoy the occasional sit down and play together. Outside of that gaming is a lone person activity by design. Random game joining is just a excuse that other people use to make themselves feel better by raining down Hell on weaker people. That's why I will never ever ever play PVP games. If I'm playing against a human player it's Uno, Monopoly, or Frokle for me. Video games as opposed to other games are built to be single player.

Introversion is certainly looked down upon.
Interestingly, it was only a few decades ago that one had to go out of their way to be harassed and barely had to try to get away from people.

The issue, however, with the current trends is that society is exactly the same as it was. Instead, however, electronics can now increase your (un)desired harassment rates and given a portable outlet for that purpose.

Turn off your cell phone and the internet and you'd be surprised at how little interaction you'll get from anyone in a public location like a park, restaurant, or library now. Based on the trend, such locations will be largely archaic in the future.

So... Yahtzee claims to be socially awkward yet never stops to make a cheap joke at autistic people like me? Arrogant douchebag much?

Borderlands 2 was the first game that made me break double-digits on my X-box Live friends list... as well as paying for the service.

And this was based 100% on my enjoying the hell out of the single player campaign and finding the four-player co-op to take the responsibility of other people's entertainment off of my shoulders (although I do find it oddly stressful to host a game and the two minute Claptrap Birthday Party mission was the longest two minutes I've spent playing a video game thanks to the three other people hopping around the town). There's a couple of minor grindy bits, which means you have to have a fairly high tolerance for hording stuff, sorting stuff, selling off stuff, and gambling away the earnings in the hopes of getting Moon Money to buy the only worthwhile things to buy... but it's fast-paced and hectic and reminds me a lot of the old Doom-like shooters.

Second World:
Introversion is certainly looked down upon.
Interestingly, it was only a few decades ago that one had to go out of their way to be harassed and barely had to try to get away from people.

The issue, however, with the current trends is that society is exactly the same as it was. Instead, however, electronics can now increase your (un)desired harassment rates and given a portable outlet for that purpose.

Turn off your cell phone and the internet and you'd be surprised at how little interaction you'll get from anyone in a public location like a park, restaurant, or library now. Based on the trend, such locations will be largely archaic in the future.

I agree.

If I really feel like I want to disconnect myself then my best bet is to the leave the house and go to the park. The chance of someone actually striking up a conversation is...well it simply doesn't happen!

I know I'm only adding to the wall of agreement here, but this might be my favorite EP ever. I knew about Yahtzee's aversion to multiplayer, but what I hadn't realized was the fact that we share the "diseased brain" of social anxiety issues. I applaud him for coming out with honesty this time around and being up-front about this.

I too miss the days where multiplayer was a bonus that didn't siphon effort and money away from the singleplayer experience. I let my Xbox Live gold subscription lapse because I simply wasn't playing any of my games with other people online. Simply being here in the forums, and recently adding my first friend here is a major accomplishment for me as far as social interaction is concerned. No facebook, never used twitter, and no Live/PSN/Steam friends. I don't even have a dumbphone, which in 2012 is practically having leprosy. Sometimes I'd like for that to change, and I don't inherently hate the multiplayer experience, but I do experience all the anxieties that come with the experience that Yahtzee discusses in the article and it makes it difficult to pursue.

I know you don't read the comments, but thanks for writing this. We all know the cliche of "nobody is alone in this" and "you're never the only one", but that doesn't stop how good it feels to hear a reminder that it is in fact true.

I hate the lack of split screen multiplayer in alot of these "Multiplayer centric games". I like screwing around in Halo Reach's multiplayer with my mates. I couldn't give less of a crap about Reach's online which is about as much fun as falling down stairs. The thing is once we are in the next generation and they shut down xbox live, all those stupid EA and Activision games are going to be completly useless. But I will still be able to play Reach no problem. This why people still go out and by N64s. In the far flung future, the only console that retro gamers will want will be the Wii. As for multiplayer creep well, Lost planet 2 is still worthless even with multiplayer.

DoctorObviously:
So... Yahtzee claims to be socially awkward yet never stops to make a cheap joke at autistic people like me? Arrogant douchebag much?

I assumed he made horrible jokes about everyone to keep the status quo. On the accusation of arrogant douchebag? I'm sure he would agree.

I know i'm being captain obvious but multiplayer is being pushed because it's something the typical pirated game will not be able to take part in and also it adds 1000% to the gaming time. People are less likely to trade it in.

Publishers will try anything to maximise profits even force the direction on the entire industry instead of just giving the people what they want. Digital games, crazy DRM, new console, online passes.... something has got to give.

Maybe if they can reduce pre-owned games and piracy they won't need to force multiplayer and SP will be better??? I don't know

IronMit:
I know i'm being captain obvious but multiplayer is being pushed because it's something the typical pirated game will not be able to take part in and also it adds 1000% to the gaming time. People are less likely to trade it in.

That's the real big push for multi-player. They want people to leave the game in the drive for weeks or months.

And as a single player, I think Borderlands 2 has the right idea. Granted, some of the builds aren't very SP-friendly, but quite a lot of us have had very good single player experiences with this game, as the there's lots of side missions and plenty of places to explore... and you get to jump on-line with up to three friends in a fairly friendly, casual atmosphere thanks to XP sharing.

First time I played Red Dead Redemption, I was hoping the MP was along these lines. Sadly, it wasn't. I would love to be able to hook up with friends and battle Dragon mobs in Skyrim, but alas that's not an option. Even if you think Borderlands 2 fails as a single player game, there's quite a lot here that could work in a co-op open-world game.

Second World:
Turn off your cell phone and the internet and you'd be surprised at how little interaction you'll get from anyone in a public location like a park, restaurant, or library now. Based on the trend, such locations will be largely archaic in the future.

I find the opposite. Even with my MP3 player people won't STOP talking to me.

cidbahamut:

Yahtzee Croshaw:

It's true, though, isn't it? This is a society that demonizes the introvert.

This has bothered me for ages.

There's nothing wrong with being the guy who'd rather just stay in and have a quiet night.

Know what I hate about that trope? The message.
Their not subtle-at-all message about the re-affirmation of unity; of what we as a society have achieved together and only through cooperation and love and blah blah blah.

They use that bullshit character arc to death; but I guess it's hard to ignore when most of said movies feature credits rolls that are over 5 minutes long.

It is not multi player creep when the game is designed to played as a multi player experience. This isn't like the incredibly short after thought mw3 campaign that mostly serves as a multi player tutorial. The assumption that if you have to jump into this game with random douche bags is just plain wrong. It just takes a few google searches to find websites dedicated to getting like minded gamers together. Often I agree with yahtzee but this time I think his stubborn insistence on judging games solely as a single player experience is getting in the way of his enjoyment.

Richard Rosenthal:
Often I agree with yahtzee but this time I think his stubborn insistence on judging games solely as a single player experience is getting in the way of his enjoyment.

Considering the majority of gamers don't go on-line, having a critic/reviewer/whatever focus like a laser-beam on the single player aspect of the game fills an important niche in game discussion. I've seen quite a few critics give high scores to games which they admit don't have very good single player campaigns, just because they're fans of the multi-player aspect... and that's perfectly acceptable A critic's job is to express his opinion and his reasoning, not to have the "right" opinion.

The point I (and others) seem to be making is that Borderlands 2 is as much a single player game as Skyrim is. It has a nice, meaty campaign which doesn't skimp on story which many have enjoyed playing solo and I like how it's managed to take a bunch of fun elements from MMOs and transport them to a single-player/co-op game.

I understand why it's not to Yahtzee's taste (it's really just a big dumb shooter in RPG clothing), but I don't think multi-player creep is the reason why.

One of my friends got me into LoL a while back. It was the first game I attempted to play online with other people and it was kind of addictive for a while but after a couple of bad experiences with complete morons capped off with some dumbass berating me endlessly the first time I tried PvP I removed the game from my computer and have never tried anything online again. Its just not fun. Frankly I don't get the attraction, but then I do have a social disorder and am very introverted. I don't want to socialize when I'm playing video games. If I want to socialize I'll leave the house...get some coffee...go to the movies or something.

Multiplayer isn't the problem, it's a symptom. The problem is that game companies are obsessed with anti-piracy. The most proven method for preventing piracy is force the player to log in their central server every time they load the game. Players tend to resent this sort of thing (Diablo 3, anyone?) unless there is something tangible to be gained from it. Then the marketing guys come over and say "Well heck, let's just add multiplayer mode so that they'll all be happy to log into our central server!" And in the boardroom there was much rejoicing.

But then they noticed an unsettling trend: The pirates simply didn't give a crap about multiplayer and simply ignored the whole central server thing that was so essential in stopping piracy. They shrugged at the impotent multiplayer content that no one was going miss anyway and just played the game entirely offline. Soon afterward the developers decided to just take their ball and go home. Instead of multiplayer being something tacked on to the side it was now the core of the game. Ha ha, take that, pirates! Now there is nothing left to our game but a multiplayer mode that you can't access because you're a filthy pirate!

Nevermind that they were chasing off paying customers faster than the freeloading pirates. A pyrrhic victory was still a victory in their eyes. And so it became that the banner of anti-piracy became the depressing path of making games with flimsy cores that were held up by nothing more than cheap multiplayer spackle to force server log-ins, because having that strong anti-piracy system is far more important than having any actual game content worth paying for.

This article describes my feelings on multiplayer exactly. I'm also a socially anxious introvert, and while I love a good game or get-together with close friends, I despise going out in crowds of random strangers or playing with them online.

It gets interesting being an introvert with extrovert friends. You can be hanging out with 2-3 buddies and having a wonderful close chummy time, but if they get invited to a party or something you can either be the 'loner', with all its random-shooting connotations, or mill about and nibble snap-peas for a couple hours while they drink and dance.

Can't see what's so wrong about preferring a handful of close confidants to a roomful of acquaintances, myself. But the only people who seem okay with that mindset are the other sods that live by it.

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