Activision Community Manager Wants Gamers To “Stop Threatening Game Developers”
Activision’s community manager Dan Amrich recently vented about certain groups in the gaming community in an interesting editorial on his personal blog.
Amrich is primarily concerned with the treatment of game developers on the Internet by the people who supposedly play and enjoy Activision’s games. He specifically referred to recent examples of abuse towards David Vonderhaar of Treyarch.
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The context here is that Treyarch’s Call of Duty: Black Ops II recently received a patch that introduced numerous tweaks which served to reduce the damage and speed of certain weapons. Due to these implemented changes, which of course affects some gamers’ personal experiences, Vonderhaar became a target for ridicule and violent threats.
Amrich said that the changes made some “people violently angry.”
He explained, “One of [Vonderhaar]’s many responsibilities is to keep the game as balanced as possible,” yet when he does go on to make these changes, he “often gets told he should die in a fire or kill himself or is a horrible person. If anyone thinks for a second that this is okay, it is not.”
“But if the loudest voices in the Call of Duty ‘community’ act like an angry mob instead, guess how the entire world views Call of Duty?” Amrich continued.
“Now consider that these Internet Tough Guy rants and demands are not unique to COD, but exist everywhere, in many gaming communities. This is why the world often does not take gaming seriously; this is why gamers are assumed to be immature, whiny assh***s. Because the immature, whiny assh***s are louder.”
Amrich concluded by pleading for more thoughtfulness and better behaviour from gamers, asking people to think about how they would like to be treated.
“If you enjoy your games,” he ended the blog post with, “have a little respect for the people who make them – and stop threatening them with bodily harm every time they do their job.”
Personally, there can be little defense for this really. I’ve always said that you can feel free to criticise as much as possible, provided you do it intelligently and constructively, and if you do vent in anger, which I’ve done frequently before about games, just be sure to leave the personal attacks and immaturity out of it. Criticism and negative feedback is necessary, but it’s useless if it isn’t done in a decent manner.
By all means, call Diablo III a piece of crap, as long as you leave personal insults and unnecessary or unjustified hate speech out of it.
These kinds of gamers really do piss me off though, because as Amrich put it perfectly, it’s the immature and whiny assholes who are louder than the rest, and give the gaming community a bad name.