I Hate Haters… Does That Even Make Sense?
Now look. I know we’re all about having fun here at Media Whore Network, but I’ve got to get serious for a minute. It’s not something I usually do, but there’s been this thing that’s been bugging me for a long time, and I just wanted to get it off my chest. I’m normally a quiet individual who keeps to himself, but to quote one of my favorite movies of all time, I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore.
Want to know what it is that really grinds my gears and sets me off? Hate. That’s right, hate. Well, maybe I should be more specific. Hit the jump to see what I mean.
What set me off was the aftermath of the announcement of Halo 3: Recon. I looked at a couple of different blog posts about the news, and then took a gander at the comments. I noticed that, for the most part, people were not discussing the new game. Mostly it was two camps, one group hating on Halo fans, and a group of Halo fans fighting back. Now I’ll admit, I’m not the biggest Halo fan. I’m not even a big fan of FPS games in general (I like my spiky haired effeminate Japanese heroes). Regardless, I don’t understand why people were slinging insults back and forth based on an opinion of a video game.
Thinking back, I can remember being a little nerd in middle school. There were 2 groups of nerd in my middle school, the Pokemon Trading Card Game kids, and the Magic The Gathering kids. Oh boy, did we hate each other. (By the way, I was in team Pokemon). We both thought our nerdy pursuit was the better of the two, and constantly berated the other “side”. Eventually, I realized that in the end we were both groups of nerdy kids who loved Wizards of The Coast and their incredibly expensive card games.
Another place I see this hate is in online multiplayer gaming. We all joke about Xbox Live, and how everyone on there is 12 years old and full of rage. The sad thing is that it’s mostly true. If I jump into any of the popular multiplayer FPS games, there is a good chance that there will be someone in the game screaming and yelling obscenities. If I do poorly, I’ve been known to throw the occasional curse word out, but I am amazed at the obscene vocabulary these people have. Video games are supposed to be about relaxing and having fun. It’s entertainment, not an outlet for you to scream and yell at people.
This isn’t just a symptom of Xbox Live, as some people might make it out to be. Last night I decided to hop on and play Zombie Panic, which is an excellent Half Life 2 multiplayer mod. I hopped into the game, which I’ll admit I’m a total newbie at, and just started running around and having general fun as a zombie hunting for human flesh. Within 30 seconds I had another Zombie player screaming at me to “get on the fucking ball” and “stop dicking around”. I was just having fun trying to get a feel for how my character was controlled, and the offending player was screaming at me for being a newbie. To be honest, I was ticked off and left the server, finding another one with pleasant people that gave me tips on the game.
So the question some might ask is “why is this a problem?” First of all, we are giving gamers a negative image. Why do you think so many people argue that games cause aggression and violence? They’re probably have watched people playing a game such as Halo and freaking out. Also, we are tearing apart what binds us gamers together. All of us share a hobby that is sometimes misunderstood and shunned. We need to come together as a community and support each other. Even the biggest haters can admit that multiplayer games are more fun when everyone is laughing and having a good time.
The real question is what can we do to change this? I don’t have an answer, and to be honest I don’t think there is one. Unfortunately, it is some people’s nature to act this way. I just wish those people could realize how they drain the fun out gaming for the rest of us, who are just here to have a good time and forget about our problems in real life. I think The Presidents of the United States of America put it best, saying “You gotta love everybody, make ’em feel good about themselves.”