By Medusa of QgirlZ [Last Updated: 6/1/98]
The original topic for this article was Like, Love and Lust Online, but as I labored over the content it occurred to me that it neeed a bit more thought. So in coming weeks I will get to that most interesting and provocative topic. For now, though, I just feel like ranting about what bugs me about Quake online. Brace yourself, outlandish opinions ahead!
The most hated thing about Quaking online is dealing with the cry babies. Almost all complaints are performance oriented. Yes, there are legitimate complaints to be registered but after mentioning it once (okay twice because you want to be sure everyone takes note in the heat of battle), you’re just repeating your true nature – the fact that insecurity and ego override sportsmanship and fun. Oh, the shame of it! Attitude is everything here. Some people can get away with registering reasons for poor performance because they are polite. They can complain in a socially acceptable way and that is cool (Yes, segue coming soon). Specifically, these complaints often revolve around ping. Some just have to do with moves on the part of a good player resulting in the demise a lackluster player. There have been many a time I yelled allowed, “No way!” But I don’t bother typing it. Other times the complaints are about lag (packet loss as opposed to ping). Whatever it is, this type of continued behavior during game play is a pathetic display.
Before my cable modem I had a 33.6 on some of the worst phone lines in the United States (Ohio) so I remember what its like to be a HPB. But I do not recall crying about it. Being mistress of the obvious is not worth wasting energy on. While playing as Medusa I rarely get on people for this in that I am representing our clan; but at rare times when playing under other names (ClusterMunch, MeoW or Rosalind) it is as much fun as fragging. The other day some monkey blurted out of his blow hole “Oh it’s real easy with no ping!” With a ping of 68 I had to immediately count this joker as a floundering fake. I responded with a true statement, “I get my butt kicked by 300 pingers all the time, why can’t you do it?” We hang with some great players at QGirlZ. Jarlaxle often times kept me from getting even a single frag when he was a HPB (big time) and I donned the LPB flag. Genocide puts the hurt on all the time on my local machine when he has a 250. Guess ping is not always the answer huh? This particular simpleton squeaked that I was full of crap and quit. Hey, we all get frustrated at times but this guy should find a new game; Quake’s obviously too stressful for him. There’s no doubting that ping can play a part in the game, but why must everyone complain about it constantly?
The second worse thing is rude behavior, but of course I usually find this funny (this is the segue). Most of these guys (only saying guys because id software estimates that 97% of people who play quake are male and almost none of the women I have known on the net suffer from this problem) are under socialized and in need of a date. You can usually tell right away when you confront a pathological geek. It’s amusing in a sort of freak show kind of way. They are obviously out of control with no handle on some very primitive urges. This usually warrants no response at all and ultimately that is what bothers them the most. Some times I think that I am the person to provide a corrective experience to the online oaf but have found that it rarely does any good. Why dignify the dredge of the online gaming society with a response?
So are you starting to think about more game specific Quake quaffs? Good! There are plenty of minor jabs I would like to make for those willing to listen. First, I don’t like campers. While I categorize it as a valid strategy with a set of specific skills it is the basest of them all. However, I find comfort in the fact that few of them finish well on any given map. What is more interesting are the knuckle heads that yell “Camper!” when your not camping. If you happen to get them twice in a row in the game area they yell “Camper!” The obvious thing about this breed of player is that they truly do not understand the nature of the game. Hey, I’m no expert but when I hear someone coming up behind me I quickly find a good place to cut them off. The concept of using sound effects is beyond this mutation of the Quake player, the camper-accuser.
In Quake 2 I deplore the BFG (Big Fake Game, as in get a game). I never played DOOM but agree with those who wish it stayed there. The only exception to camping that I accept is in Q2 when you know some lame brain is going to run for it every time right after respawn. You can win a FFA game just by waiting for some BFG Babies to come for their favorite flavor of frags. The positive side of this is that I enjoy going after the BFG bugger exclusively. That always makes them very happy.
Another Q2 favorite of mine is the croucher. Crouching definitely has its strategic advantages but when someone thinks it will make them harder to hit in the middle of a large room I just point my mouse down and step around for the easy kill. It’s cute but not wise.
Ok this rant will get me in trouble but I must continue. In Quake 1 I have a problem with DM3. It is the standard team level and I have come to appreciate it. Princess of QGirlZ showed me the light long ago in terms of this level but I still have to protest (because I can). All the good weapons are in the same room and the Yellow Armor is very close at hand too, as well as two health packs, ammunition, and the Quad lives right around the corner. This is the one level that camping is synonymous with strategic guarding. It pains me at times to have to take part in this to win a game. I really don’t feel DM3 is a balanced level.
For both Quake 1 and Quake 2 the Quad is a pet problem of mine. In team games I accept it with the open arms of an loving mother. Even in free-for-alls it has its place; but in 1-on-1 games it’s a pain in the butt. There were many a 1-on-1 games I’ve played where half to all of the frags the other guy got on me were due to Quad. I know how to control the thing (mostly) but hate having to do so. This is just preference of course, but it’s just annoying to know that a Quad dependent person revels in this kind of kill. Maybe the Quad just scares me and I have some unresolved issues with power. Who knows? I know that I don’t use it until others do, or until they truly camp and you have to remove them from a perch. What I do know is that all that glowing makes me want to stick a good old fashion foot in their groin.
An insignificant bother is that of FFA (Free For All) games. While it’s a wonderful part of Quake and I play it all the time, you just can not take it too seriously in terms of rating yourself. More than one person has won a FFA game and typed in “I won again”. Then you call them out into a refined 1-on-1 game and they often bite the bullet. The annoying part of this is that many players think that FFA is a measure of total skill when in fact it can make you sloppy. The more I play FFA the worse I perform at team and 1-on-1 games. Personally, I am not that strong a player but can see that FFA is too random to be the pinnacle of Quake. Why do you think that tournaments specialize in games other than FFA? It’s not just logistic.
Beyond all these complaints and qualifications I love the game enough not to care too much. Adapting to these said aspects of the game is part of the fun. Trying it all is part of the experience and the process is as interesting as the results. The beautiful thing about Quake is that it is so diverse and has incredible longevity in terms of game play. Isn’t ranting fun?