Autoethnography of Gaming

Published: 2021-07-07 00:00:37
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IntroductionIn my childhood, at an age of 8 I went to my friend’s house and I saw him playing RuneScape for the first time. RuneScape is a fantasy MMORPG, created and released by Jagex, which was first released in 2001. He was a big time fan of RuneScape and told me he can spend hours and hours in play and would not get tired. He explained to me basics of the game. He told me how to perform various tasks in the game e.g. how to make weapons, cut trees and finish mobs. It was fun to play RuneScape. I found this video game quite different and more interesting than other video games I used to play those days as this one involved two players whereas other games I used to play that time involved just one player. My friend helped me in making my account and then I got a chance to play RuneScape at my home.The major reason for preferring RuneScape over other online games is, it is very much different from other online games. In other games, for instance in the online version of ‘The Last of Us’, players form a team and try to compete and kill the players of the other team, there are not much options and they do not give difficult and complex targets. The only target is to kill the opponents’ team’s players. The lay out, maps and scenario are quite simple, in short, there is nothing much to explore. Other games for instance, ‘Call of Duty’ too, do not have variety of quests, tasks or targets to achieve. Whereas, RuneScape unlike other games provides the gamer with an open world of game with a huge variety of tasks/ targets and jobs. It’s complex world provides hundreds of targets to achieve everyday. It’s complexity of targets and gaming possibilities make RuneScape superior to other available online games.Part 2NarrativeAlthough, RuneScape does not involve physical interaction among players but it should be remembered that a person is actually encountered with real persons while playing RuneScape. With few exceptions, the characters, players’ names and their characteristics are controlled and decided by real people that possesses real identity, names, hobbies, values, strengths and weaknesses etc. These facts must be kept in mind as during the play, at one point or the other the players get a chance to interact with one another in virtual world. It is very much possible to come across a person who leaves a negative impression on other player. Some times players are not nice with other players however, just like real world it should be learned how to interact with such category of players and handle them while maintaining peace. If a person fails to handle such type of situation, it may affect their personality and even life while they are offline. Just as it is important to communicate and interact with people positively and carefully in real life it is also important to handle people wisely while gaming online.More Read: 3D Character ModelsThis is important to talk about it as I too have experienced situations where I had to deal with nasty behaviour of other players. In my childhood, when I was still in process of learning to interact efficiently with others I used to get upset on such occasions. I would become sad and start to argue with the opponents. For instance, one day a player said to me ‘you are useless’ and another day someone said ‘you must quit playing you are an online garbage at play’. After such incidents I would either start a verbal argument or I would not play for several days as I was not willing to interact with bad people of virtual world.Neil Clark in his book ‘ Game Addiction: The Experience and the Effects’ mentioned that while discussing impact of online games with Ms Denise she said that her son refused to play WoW as he came across several players that were rude to him. (Clark, 120) Just like people in real life can be either nice or nasty, in virtual world too people can have any impact on others in surrounding. (Yang, 2012)Consalvo (2009) in ‘Cheating: Gaining Advantage in Videogames’ revealed that inappropriate language is common in online games and chat. Moreover, males players sometimes call other male players ‘small girl’. This is more common practice in male players, to treat other players disrespectfully, this has been found that such people treat others disrespectfully in real life too. Clark (2009) also mentioned that sending and receiving threatening messages while online is also common in active users of social media and online gaming.However, I am not trying to say that all the online persons show inappropriate behaviour. If I say that I would be wrong. This is just like our life, everyday in our life we experiece good and bad things and this is only us, that we need to take control of. No one can change the entire world however, one may control his own self, his own temperament. Lots of helpful and nice people too visit online gaming websites everyday. For instance, while I was playing RuneScape I visited a trading page and read what users were communicating with one another. I observed that there were lots of people talking to each other in respectable manner. Below is a screenshot where a player of RuneScape is being thankful to another player for information sharing about the game.Check this conversation too, where one player was unable to help the other player. So he felt bad about it and said that he is apologetic for being unable to help another player. Name of the player is Tzu.As I said earlier, wherever a person goes or whatever a person does, there remains likelihood of experiencing something negative in interactions and enconters. Check the below given screenshot that shows rude laguage being used by one of the player in an encounter where one player said to the other player that his father ruined the world by not using birth control.ConclusionWith the passage of time, I have learnt that the key while browsing the online world is to not take such conversations and encounters personal. One must remember that these incidents may happen everyday every minute in virtual world just like real world. It is better to be ready to accept the fact that in virtual world we may come across any type of people. All you need to do is to prepare yourself to experience any negative or positive encounter and practice to handle the situation in a positive manner. Situation can be simply controlled by laughing on the situation, blocking or ignoring the person, leaving the chat room or simply ignoring the opponent. Virtual world has taught me to stay calm and handle an encounter with negative or disrespectful attitude in the most positive way. This is true that just like real world, virtual world has good and bad people too. However, in order to enjoy the virtual experience to the fullest it is a must to understand the most appropriate ways to navigate through the online world in positive manner. Only then a person will be able to enjoy his virtual experience to the fullest.ReferencesClark; N (2009). Game Addiction: The Experience and the Effects. Farland Publisher: ISBN-13: 978-0786443642, ISBN-10: 0786443642 pg 100- 150.Consalvo, Mia (2009). Cheating: Gaining Advantage in Videogames, MIT Press, ISBN-13: 978-0262513289, ISBN-10: 0262513285Yang, S. C. (2012). Paths to bullying in online gaming: The effects of gender, preference for playing violent games, hostility, and aggressive behavior on bullying. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 47(3), 235-249.

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