Friday, June 25

With sympathy

So, Paul Gray died of an accidental OD. He was the bassist for the heavy metal band Slipknot, and pretty close to my age.

What's disheartening for me is the comments to the story-as always. Addiction, by most medical accounts, is classified as a disease and the idea that he just should've been a better person is kinda insane.

And is probably why we have a process of imprisonment instead of treatment when it comes to drugs.

Tuesday, June 8

The new guy

I recently got Left 4 Dead 2. 8 plus months (or so) after the game was released I was able to afford it and because I loved the original I was looking forward to playing the game. I could even afford the occasional DLC now!

L4D is noteworthy for me because it's the first game I played online and remains so for the time being. Because the mechanics of the game insist that you help each other out, leaving someone behind isn't quite forbidden but nobody wants to do it. Of course, I've had the experience of telling or being told; "No! Go without me I'm done for!" but for the most part when someone gets in trouble, you go back and help, right?

There is a 'but' of course.

I'm the new guy. I don't know the maps, I don't know how the new Infected work, or the new health devices. Yes, I read the instructions but it's a game; you have to play it to understand.

Which is why it has been so discouraging to be the newbie.

I'm about average at gaming and I try to keep a casual attitude about it. But no matter what; I still have to learn how things work. In Dead Center, I didn't know that the goal was to fill the car with gas-I didn't hear the characters tell me what the goal was. The people I was playing with didn't tell me, often ran ahead without me and one person even asked why I kept getting lost and knocked down.

"I'm new and I don't know the maps," I said, trying to sound cheerful but I couldn't escape the feeling that the other players were done with me. A few minutes later, they left, we failed the mission and I started over with bots.

Sigh. I kept at it and eventually people joined up, including another new player, and we got through the mission.

Last night I attempted to get through Dark Carnival. I found a room, waited, and when the party leader asked, "Are we ready to go?" I replied, "You bet!" and he said, "Not you," and kicked me from the game.

I didn't even know the guy and yeah, I shouldn't take it personally but it's hard not to. I'm new, I want to learn how to play and play better, I want to explore a bit and see what cool routes or jokes or things might be hidden in the game. I don't know many people who play online so I'm out there, trying to make new friends, in the casual sense of the word. And people don't want to show the the ropes/have fun with me, so it's hard.

Because I'm late. I'm the new kid at school and nobody wants to tell me where the lunchroom is.

Everybody is new sometimes and if you want people to keep playing the game you love, you have to welcome the newbies. I know not everyone is going to mesh and become best chums or anything as silly as that, but is it really such a pain in the ass to help a new player who isn't being a dick through one mission?

If it is, then play on a private channel so we don't muck up your good time. Everyone will be happier.