Posts Written On July 2015

Gaming Controversy – The effects of gaming

Ever since I came across the blog Gaming Conversations I have wanted to do a collaboration with Braxwolf. After writing “Between men and women…” I realised from the comments that followed how interesting an open discussion about controversial topics can be. So here we go. I have chosen the gaming controversy resulting from discussions of the topic censorship and gaming. Does the content in video games change the behavior and attitudes of a player? Does that mean we should censor certain content? In this blog post I will present some different points of view and leave the subject open for discussion.

In today’s age gaming has become a medium of storytelling which provides their audiences with an interactive power not other forms of narrative can offer. This can help us more easily immerse and open ourselves to feel empathy for the characters who’s story we are experiencing. It’s a beautiful way for the art of storytelling to develop. But what are the downsides of this? Just like any medium of storytelling we are affected by it’s content.

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Voices, voices, voices…

I don’t know about you guys but I am an avid reader of body language, an ability I’ve wasted much time attempting to perfect. I say wasted, because in the world of gaming it certainly feels sort of useless. That said I find it very useful IRL. It is such a crucial part of how I figure a person out that I feel quite crippled trying to understand people online. In this environment the tools we have to figure a person out are very limited. This makes me wonder if we as gamers tend to read even more into a persons voice than others in order to compensate for the lack of other things. So tonight when I couldn’t sleep I decided to look for some research on how a voice impact how we see a person.

Fun facts about voices:
According to research into leadership it is clear that people are more willing to follow or trust someone in charge (male or female) if they have a deeper, darker, more masculine voice.

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Leadership part 2 – Interview with Dakaru

So this week Rav and I will be doing another twin piece post on in-game leadership. For my second article on the subject I decided to get in touch with Dakaru, GM of Nostrum Dolus and team leader of the ND ranked team. Him and his team were, to be blunt, hated by many, but their combined level of skill was unmatched on the server they played. It is surely one of the reasons they generated so much hate. Dakaru has since moved on from SWTOR and is currently playing Evolve where he is again finding himself in a leading position.

To give a bit of background, Dakaru started out as an officer in Nostrum Dolus back when it was mainly a PvE guild. He was most interested in PvP himself which led to Dakaru being given a leadership role in ranked when that came into the game. Eventually the GM and Co-GM quit the game and Dakaru took over leadership of the guild. As he did so many of the PvE players in ND were quitting and Dakaru ended up slowly turning ND into a more PvP oriented guild. The ranked team he collected was a slow progression according to Dakaru. “I got as many good players as I could find together, and kept shuffling around over and over”, he tells me. By the time of the transfer to Nightmare Lands the game had lost a lot of players and so had Nostrum Dolus. They ended up merging their ranked team with another team who had lost a lot of people as well.

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Leadership comparison: RC vs. ND

After conducting these two interviews with SWTOR GM’s of Reality Check and Nostrum Dolus I can’t help but wonder about the differences between the two. In this bonus post I will briefly discuss the differences in the two leader types. Why? Because the two personalities presented are not only interesting when discussing leadership in-game but in general as well.

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Between men and women…

“Between men and women there is no friendship possible.There is passion, enmity, worship, love, but no friendship.”
-Oscar Wilde

Is this statement true or false?

Oscar Wilde is one of my favourite authors of all time. That kind of intelligence and wit together with the power to express it in words is nothing but attractive. It’s a shame for women everywhere that he is gay… and dead of course, that’s another complication.

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Identity Crisis!

As gamers we are used to adopting new identities. We then discard them the same way a snake sheds it’s skins. We change between personalities as often as a girl changes her clothes. Want a make-over? Start playing a new game or create a new character. You can be the hero of Gotham City, you can be Ronaldo, you can be Lara Croft. Or maybe you just want to be a more ideal version of yourself. The possibilities are endless. This begs the question – As gamers, are we all suffering from some strange form of multiple-personality disorder?

For myself, I’ve never felt all my (sometimes wildly opposing) personality traits fit very well into just one person. As a result of this, as well as being a very playful person in general, I have gone by many different names – both in games and in real life.

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History of TRE guilds – Reality Check

Love them or not, we all know who they are. It is coded in every fellow pvper, that when they see that guild tag in a warzone, then it probably won’t end well for their team. But besides the common reaction “It’s RC, we’re screwed”, what do we actually know about them? To be honest with you all, I didn’t know much, so the interview with the guild’s GM, Rummel, and the Co-GM, Anthis was very illuminating, if I can say that. I’m certain you crave the information I have, so to not keep you in the dark any longer, let me present you the dramatic history of Reality Check!

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Leadership – Interview with RC’s Rummel and Anthis

After a Skype chat with Ravs about gaming and blogging we decided to write a twin piece about in-game leadership – specifically that required when leading a guild in SWTOR. She would focus on PvE guilds and me PvP. My very first thought was that I would love to get an interview with the GM of old Reality Check; a guild which gained it’s reputation on the server for putting up a fight against Nostrum Dolus. By going from occasionally queuing with unfavourable compositions Autumn 2012 to being a force to be reckoned with on TOFN by mid 2013 RC managed to establish themselves in the top tier bracket. With 60+ members, a lot of which were extremely strong minded, stubborn individuals, how does one manage the guild and keep it together?

Since the removal of 8v8 warzones the guild has unfortunately been mostly inactive. Being new to the game this interview would be especially interesting to me since I was not around at the time of ranked 8v8. Getting it however was not easy, I had to use all my powers of persuasion, but luckily for me I somehow tend to get what I want in the end. Rummel, GM of RC, finally agreed to conduct the interview with me under the condition that his friend, confidant and Co-GM Anthis could join – a condition I was happy to agree to.

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“Rules of conduct” and Ranked

As a part of our theme week focusing on SWTOR and Ranked PvP previous to patch 2.0, I decided to write a piece about the rules that were agreed upon back in the beginning of year 2013. Anthis from Reality Check and Mylex from TWATS were two of the people present at the meeting held setting the terms of this agreement. Last Friday I brought them both on the GD TS hoping to find out more.

Mylex begins by telling me that before the server transfers between Nightmare Lands and TRE there was some but not much in terms of ranked activity on TRE. When the server merges happened the best team on TRE was LotD and on Nightmare Lands it was Nostrum Dolus. Mylex continues to explain that LotD didn’t do that well against ND in those first few days of queuing and subsequently over a period of time fell apart. A few of their better players moved to ToFN for a time. Eventually RC started queuing but up until then the only other regular teams were ND and TWATS.

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8v8 Ranked on TRE Part 2

To read part 1 of this article follow this link

By October or November 2012 the server had two regular teams in TWATs and Nostrum and some new semi-regular teams in Spaceballs, Dxun, Drop it like it’s Hoth and the first version of Reality Check.

Now, these guys started queuing of their own accord, either for the first time or as a return to action, but they benefited from coming in to an environment that had lost a lot of it’s toxicity. For that change in atmosphere to have taken place I clearly could not be the only person reaching out and building bridges. On the forums, where every word would be analysed and the fuse leading to the drama-bomb sat ready to be lit, an interesting thing started to happen. Unprompted, someone from each team would post each morning thanking the teams they had played the previous night and give hints as to the results, whilst being good losers and gracious winners. This in itself caught the eye of the guys in Group Three. When Group Three also got a sense of the positive and friendly atmosphere afforded to new teams, it became much easier for those guys to persuade the guildies to try some 8v8 ranked. They could, in good conscience, promise that they won’t get laughed it, that it will be fun and (because of the forums thread) they knew of people on both fleets that they could talk to about good times to queue etc.

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