Over the last two decades, online gaming has evolved from a passing hobby to a full-blown, globally beloved pastime. We have never had such easy access to a wide range of games, fast internet access, and powerful gaming machines. We’ve also seen the rise of mobile gaming, eSports, and the release of increasingly innovative MMO, MMORPG, FPS, and RTS games from leading developers.
But, as with most things in life, time spent playing our favorite game doesn’t always go as planned.
Most gamers will be familiar with the small but creeping annoyances that slowly ruin an otherwise good time. Trolls, cheaters, hackers, bugs, and lag galore, it’s inevitable that sometimes we can’t always have that perfect sit-down-and-play-until-bed experience that we desire.
Keep that in mind as we dive into some of the most common annoyances associated with online gaming. You’ll soon discover the annoyances you face are not yours alone!
1. The Endless Swarm Of Bugs
Most people may not realize just how much work goes into creating a fully functional gaming experience. Thousands of hours of coding, design, and execution go into every game, no matter how simple it seems.
The reality is, though, that bugs have always been an inherent aspect of any game. And they’re pretty easy to come across, especially in online games that have frequent updates, patches, and new content. Being able to clip through walls may seem fun at first, but it doesn’t take long for it to detract from the fun.
2. Underage Gamers
Video games are for everyone, but sometimes we encounter younger children in a completely unsuitable game. Age restrictions are there for a reason.
This problem is especially prevalent when we’re enjoying a highly competitive game, such as CS: GO, where every kill counts, but not everyone is mature enough to deal with the loss. Every gamer knows the annoyance of listening to a young kid throwing a tantrum after getting ganked one too many times.
3. The Runners And Quitters
Team-based games are fun for just that reason; they’re groups of players attempting to achieve a common goal. This makes it so much worse when one team is finally close to getting the win, and one player on the other team—rather than taking the loss gracefully—rage quits out the match and causes everyone to fail. Thankfully, some games are now penalizing runners and quitters, so this annoyance is being brought under control.
4. The Never-ending Bad Language
We’ve grown accustomed to the trash talk associated with specific online games; League of Legends just wouldn’t quite be the same without being able to call out a teammate in a friendly way.
Some players, however, always seem to take this notion a little too far, constantly finding excuses to swear and use expletive language in every situation that they can—and it gets old quickly.
5. Studios Cutting Content
While single-player games don’t suffer from this as much as their online counterparts, it’s become common practice for a publisher to lock sections of content away from gamers. This may mean entire new regions, specific gear sets or weapons, or something as simple as a level cap.
Whatever the case, it’s now easy to encounter a player that’s purchased the niceties that are otherwise locked away, giving them a clear advantage. Whatever happened to earning a level up, or new weapons and armor?
6. Cheaters And Exploiters
As mentioned earlier, glitches are inherent in most games. But sometimes, players can use that glitch to exploit the game in a way that suits them. This may give them certain advantages, or it may be just an excuse to troll as many people as possible.
Either way, there are few things quite as infuriating as a player that’s just out to ruin everyone’s good time simply because they’re bored.
7. Lazy Campers
Camping is a style of gameplay that sees a player finding a safe spot somewhere on the map and using it to hide from their enemy, or kill the unsuspecting as they pass through. Campers have been present in online gaming for decades, and they’re just as much hated then as they are now. Expect to find campers in games like Call of Duty, where it can pay to hide away for most of the match period.
8. The Accusers
Not everyone handles loss that well, but it’s not possible to have a complete video game without some kind of fail state. This leads to some players throwing full-on fits when they’ve been beaten, sometimes to the point where they end up accusing others of “hacking”. This is precisely where the term “salty” came from, and it’s one that’s closely tied to point number 2—although it’s always worth keeping in mind that even grown adults can act similarly, and often do.
9. Spawn Killers
Much like their camping companions, spawn killers are all about nabbing kills easily without putting in any of the work.
Plenty of games will have dedicated spawn points where players that have recently died will start from. Unfortunately, there will always be that one player that hangs around this point with a powerful weapon, killing as many spawners as possible with the least amount of effort.
10. Finally: The Lag
Lag is truly a universal experience. Despite how state-of-the-art our desktop computers are, or how fast our internet connections have become, it’s almost impossible to avoid lag completely.
High ping means slow reaction times, missing key seconds during a match, or simply not having the latency to join the game in the first place. Sometimes it means resetting the router, other times restarting the computer. In the worst-case scenario, we just need to wait until the next day to try again.
Gaming online can’t always be perfect, and every now and again we come across something that really causes our blood to boil. For the most part, however, gaming is a fun and rewarding experience.
While we sometimes need to put up with hackers, small kids, lag, and plenty of bugs, this doesn’t really detract from the amazing worlds we can inhibit from behind our screens.