Greetings NAGuuls, and thanks for coming back for This Week In Gaming. I made a run for the border a few weeks ago, but after Dane found me hiding in a cave in Sri Lanka eating moss he dragged me back to the NAG dungeon and has me back on the weekly news cycle. So make my efforts worthwhile and hit the jump.
Rainbow Six players bait trolls, Nintendo ignores them and Blizzard rewards you for not being one
A lot of news this week revolves around online toxicity. With multiplayer online titles continuing to dominate the gaming market, dealing with internet assholes has become the order of the day.
Our first piece of news is Ubisoft’s autoban for derogatory and racist terms in Rainbow Six Siege, which will immediately ban players for typing things like racial slurs in chat.
Your first ban is half an hour, but it gets much harsher after that, with official investigation after a third offense. The forbidden phrases encompass “any language or content deemed illegal, dangerous, threatening, abusive, obscene, vulgar, defamatory, hateful, racist, sexist, ethically offensive or constituting harassment is forbidden”.
Of course, this is now open season for players to try to bait each other into getting banned – particular in the early phases where not everyone may be aware of the auto-ban system. So advising players “don’t be racist” has a decent shot of trapping the oppositional type, and even something cagey like “what’s a nickname for raccoons” might see the helpful and naïve type instantly booted.
It’s the type of tomfoolery that’s been going on in online gaming forever (“press alt-F4 to open the cheats menu”), and overall is a relatively harmless side-effect of a good system.
Next up is the Robin Hood of cheaters, a guy who cheated on multiple accounts in Splatoon 2 in order to bring attention to Nintendo’s lack of anti-cheat in the game.
Essentially, hacking on multiple accounts the player spelled out “Please Add Anti Cheat” on the leaderboard – one account per word. The user owned up, doing it knowing all these accounts would likely be banned – that’s some commitment. He said, “I figured that someone needs to deliver a message to Nintendo.”
This is particularly relevant as the first Splatoon was supposedly overrun by cheaters.
I have to wonder if this has something to do with Nintendo’s history of being anti-esports and anti-competitive. They want their games to be casual and fun, and people going out of their way to cheat their systems flies in the face of that.
So far, it seems they’ve just banned the guy who did it.
Finally, Overwatch has put in some new measures of their own to combat assholery – and say they’re working great.
The new systems were introduced in June, and focus on rewarding positive behaviour (rather than simply punishing negative behaviour). From a psychological perspective this has always been a more effective means of behaviour modification, and it’s surprising that it’s so uncommon.
Game director Jeff Kaplan reports that abusive chat in competitive matches is down 26.4 percent in the Americas, and 16.4 percent in Korea. Strong statistics – let’s hope things only continue to improve from here.
Man spends hundreds of hours creating something both impressive and useless
Moving on to something a little more lighthearted, I stumbled across another video this week of somebody doing something insane in a video game.
I’m always impressed by these madmen who can finish Dark Souls without taking a hit, but it’s the mad geniuses who make a functioning computer in Minecraft or whatever that really amaze me.
This time, someone with extraordinary patience has made a calculator in RollerCoaster Tycoon 2. I know that series of words strung together makes no sense at all, so maybe just watch the video.
We Happy Few gets new trailer
Next up is a new trailer from We Happy Few, which is a game I’ve been keeping an eye on for some time. It’s a story-driven game with a bit of a Bioshock feel.
In this trailer you get a look at the game’s three playable characters: Arthur Boyle, who’s looking to escape the city in search of his missing brother; Sally Boyle, an experimental chemist who can use her volatile brews against the oppressive police; and Ollie Starkey, a Scottish ex-soldier with a mean attitude. Each character has its own playstyle – aggressive Ollie, stealthy Sally and Arthur as the all-rounder.
Check it out:
Earthfall, a L4D style co-op shooter, has landed
Its aliens rather than zombies, but you get the idea. Earthfall also adds some new things to the formula, like the ability to establish static defenses and the ability to create new weapons using 3D printers.
The trailer doesn’t do the best job of selling it, but I’m told it’s “better than it looks”. I’ll leave that up to you.