Tangents: Sharing a gaming experience

This is a tangent, it’s about a very particular feeling, and still about gaming, but will more be like a musing, similar to my other blog.

Me talking about my experience in the Nether, and some of the stressful elements of it, reminded me a lot of Loa and I playing Terraria on stream the first time we streamed, years and years ago, and a lot of people joined to watch the stream, and asked if they could joined the game. We allowed them to join us, and thought it’d be fun to explore a new game with people.

But, these people were a lot more geared than we were, and just threw things on us that we didn’t have to work towards getting hold of ourselves. And it quickly turned me off the game entirely. Clearly, we have ourselves to blame for inviting them, and I… but I don’t think it’s only on us.

I feel like something is missing in gaming communities and the conversation about new players and established players, and that’s the “how do you want to play?” question when we join someone else. People have different styles and ideas about how they want to enjoy what they are doing. Instead, we pick up our friends and carry them on our backs instead of sitting back to watch them while they explore this game we love with fresh eyes.

I guess these thoughts are also strongly connect with the “let new players be noobs” thing I wrote recently. This is something I’ve seen in streams too, or your favorite YouTuber’s comment section, as they are playing a game people love. Instead of people just enjoying watching them experience it, they want to butt in and backseat and tell them how to do it the best way, the most efficient way etc.

I used to have a big problem, in my everyday life, if I couldn’t do something as efficient as possible it wasn’t worth doing. It kind of goes along with the stupidest saying in the world “if somethings worth doing it’s worth doing well”, and I had to practice for years to allow myself to just do, anything. No matter the result.

So I do think it’s definitely a trigger for me, for the perfectionist in me, when people are like this. But I also know that I can be like that or have been in the past at least, the frustration of someone not doing a thing in the game you love the right way, so now they might hate the game you love. Yes, this is slight hyperbole to make a point.

The actual point I do want to make is, that we should look for consent when playing with someone who’s new to something you’re not. Ask questions, ask guiding questions, ask meta questions about questions.

  • Do you want to experience the story?
  • Do you want to just see what you uncover and discover organically while I follow you?
  • Do you want me to help you get better x or do you want to figure it out?
  • Oh, do you want me to straight up give you the answer to the question, or are you just thinking outloud?
  • Do you want me to give you a hint?

Negotiate with your friend, your favorite streamer, etc. And then just enjoy that sense of awe and discovery together with them!