Browsing Category SWTOR

Why do we troll? – The toxic side of disinhibition

Back in June I did a guest post on Ravalation‘s blog discussing why we troll which I explained by reciting the result of the research done on “The Online Disinhibition Effect”. Later on I wrote an article based on the same research discussing “Why we develop feelings for people we meet in games“. To really understand why we behave the way we do in online environments I believe the disinhibition we experience to be key. Therefore I’ve decided to re-post “Why do we troll” on my own blog to give a fuller picture of what this online disinhibition is and how it works. Enjoy!

Having always taken a great interest in human behaviour and interaction I was intrigued by the world of gaming since I first came in contact with it. My fascination with online gaming and the communities that dwell there was striking from the start and it’s what I tend to write about. My thoughts tonight are revolving around a story a in game acquaintance of mine from SWTOR, let’s call him “Tristin”, told me recently. Long story short Tristin thought he had made a new friendship in game. He seemed very happy about this new friendship. Soon enough some very personal information Tristin had told this other player in confidence ended up in a forum somewhere for all the world to read. The person he had befriended wasn’t the person he had thought at all, it was someone having created a fake in game account for the sole purpose of trolling Tristin.

This made me think about the notion trolling. What is trolling? Why do we do it?

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Cyberspace is a small world…

Yet another sleepless night. Tonight I am finding myself pondering over the complexity of chance. Coincidence. Some believe that the probability of a certain set of circumstances coming together in a meaningful or tragic way is so low that it simply cannot be considered mere coincidence.  Some believe in destiny. Some might say we don’t create our destiny but participate in its unfolding. Others, like Ernest Henley would undermine the power of chance and famously say “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul”. Albert Einstein said that coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous.

I personally don’t believe in divine intervention. I don’t believe in destiny. I believe in randomness. A beautiful mess of constant occurrences in this huge space known as “the present moment”. Right now is happening all across the world and in this enormous collage of “now”, collisions happen. We only find these collisions strange when they are of a certain character which is somehow meaningful to us.

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SWTOR PvP: What to expect from 4.0

This blog post will briefly discuss the current state of PvP in the game Star Wars: The Old Republic, as well as delve a bit deeper into the expectations the players have for the future. PvP in SWTOR has been struggling for a long period of time and I have watched the playerbase grow increasingly frustrated. Considering the amount of time this has been going on I was curious to know how much faith there is still left in the community for an improvement, especially with the upcoming expansion and its promise of an influx of players. In order learn more about this I’ve interviewed four players (Igor, Zherio, Snave and Mosh) and asked them about their thoughts and feelings about the current state of the game as well as their expectations for the future.

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The story of finding your guild

In an effort to encourage you all to tell GD the brief story of how you found your main guild I here present to you my own story! This blog post was inspired by a reader commenting on my blog post “Social Identity and Guilds in MMORPGs“. After reading the comment I thought it would be interesting to read your stories so even though I’m really cagey when it comes to writing about myself I will try to start this off!

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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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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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8v8 Ranked on TRE Part 1 (Why our server was better than yours)

Introduction:
Interested in the player involvement which SWTOR has always seemed to need to get ranked PvP off it’s feet I decided to ask Mylex to write us something about his own experiences on the subject. In the days of ranked 8v8 (despite heavy imbalance between classes and a shrinking PvP population on the server) Mylex and a few others made the competitive PvP scene a dynamic experience. This was done through tireless networking and forum activity. Here’s what happened!
-Noctua

8v8 Ranked on TRE Part 1 – Why our server was better than yours!

Okay, maybe not. But it was good and we went from virtually zero activity to 5-10 teams in the queue each day, which was unusual for the PVP servers and unheard of on the other PVE servers. It was also a great time to play on The Red Eclipse, but it was a long road to get that point.

And this is the story…

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