Positive Gaming is Real

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I listen to a lot of podcasts on the way to work, I live around a 40 minute walk from the office so I have plenty of time to listen, they help me wake up in the morning… they inform but they have to entertain.

Finding Xbox podcasts is pretty simple, not just the like of Xone Bros, but there is also an abundance of official and semi-official podcasts that satisfy that need.

Until recently I’ve struggled to find a decent PlayStation podcast… one that isn’t filled with fanboy bollocks that I find more prevalent on the Sony side of gaming, one that isn’t afraid to say that there is something on a different console worth playing, that will spread the word of “positive gaming” in a proper, adult, fashion… and then I found one… Triangle Squared.

The first one I listened do did include an email message from a listener who demonstrated the very worst fanboys have to offer, he ranted about the Xbox Community being filled with toxic 12 year old fanboys… whilst simultaneously proving that PlayStation users can be just as bad if not worse.

To me it proved a case of “you reap what you sow” in gaming… if you’re a toxic little 12 year old online then you will no doubt encounter other toxic 12 year olds online, and like most cases in life that sort of person cannot take what that are happy to dish out… newsflash kids… if you dish out vile hatred online be prepared to get it back in spades, and if you can’t take it back… leave the adults to play unhindered.

Any gaming community has its share of idiots… IGN is more than proof of that… actually IGN is an example of how idiots draw other idiots in and you end up with a whole site of them drowning out the sane people… so I’m here to share a positive community story.

If you’ve read these before you’ll know I’m a big fan of www.TrueAchievements.com website and the community therein, I’m also playing Forza Motorsport 7 which includes the heinous “Underdog” Achievement which you get for starting last in an online multiplayer race, with a full 24 player roster, and winning the race.

This has (according to the information provided when it pops) been won by 0.08% of the Forza 7 players thus far… with the website being full of Achievement Hunters a gaming session was set up to gather 24 like-minded people with the intention of “boosting” this together… 3 hours, 24 people, 24 popped Achievements was the goal and a 6pm start time arranged.

So we all logged in, the guy who arranged the session sent out the invites and soon we had 24 users in a private lobby, for a one lap race on the shortest oval track… and a plan in place.

The grid order can be set so that the best car starts dead last (something not possible in Forza 6 two years ago) and, with collisions turned off, the plan was for the person getting the Achievement (in order we joined the session, my number was 5 here) to pick a top level car and blast round the track to get the win… that done, move onto the next person.

After an hour it had been won by no people at all… connection issues, game crashes (the multiplayer was a little unstable at the time, not much better now) and people not listening to the one user in the group who had already won the Achievement meant that, at this point, nobody had won anything.

The voice of experience spoke, got us into some sort of order and told us “Don’t Panic” which became the key phrase of the session… we all loaded up the exact same bog-standard car to cut down on load times, and slowly the group started to do what it set out to.

Even though several present spoke basic English at best, steadily we worked down the list… some at the bottom voiced concern there would not be time for them to get the Achievement in the 3 hour session… “Don’t Panic” came the call from several people… as the 3 hour session closed, after several crashes, connection issues and glitches, there were still half a dozen people who hadn’t popped the points.

No one left… no one even considered leaving… the 3 hour session became 4 hours as we even invited the reserves.

To alleviate some of the boredom of racing the same track for 4 hours some chose to end each lap in spectacular fashion, and the end would often see 3 or 4 cars rolling end over end at the line, or crashing into the wall in a haze of smoke, “Don’t Panic” rang out even at the end when we all had to reconnect to get one reserve his Achievement.

As was mentioned in the session this is not a racing Achievement, it’d be practically impossible to get without a boosting session or a spectacular pile up on the first turn… it’s a social Achievement, you’re almost forced to boost the session.

In 4 hours of online play with total strangers from all around the world there was hardly any dissenting voices, no malice, no anger… just co-operation and a bond forged from a common goal.

Online communities are only toxic if you enter them in a toxic mindset yourself… if you’re an imbecile with less brains than a pork pie you’ll find exactly what you deserve… your online experience will be exactly what you make it.

So a huge shout out to the following Xbox Live gamers who made 4 hours of repetitive online play so much fun;

Mikasz, sirre0812, TuffPuppers, EinarN, AM3HQ, JetGodLike, GrmRpr69, RDWinters1944, Tsservice43, Ank 1, Donut Trump, XGuigenX, HOEAIKL, PitagorasSilva, Jappe, Apocalypse743, Chillz, ZR1, Hozzy, xJohnGalt117x, OnkelUhr98760, Erico360 and LDSLamboSV, together with a couple of reserves who’s names escape me… what a blast.


Mark Schutz

Based in the heart of the United Kingdom and old enough to remember when “old school” was just “school”. Multi-console owner who has never understood why some people feel the need to defend one console just because of the name on the box. Former IGN moderator (but much better now thanks) who has come out of that with a much improved outlook on video games. Can be found on Xbox Live or PSN under the name TTDog666