Crafting A “The Floor Is Lava” Room

, , , , , | | Friendly | August 22, 2019

(I’ve recently started a casual, semi-survival server for my friends and me on a popular block-based game. On this day, I’m alone on the server collecting supplies underground, a fairly decent ways away from our base, when one of my friends logs on. All of this takes place through the in-game chat function.)

Friend: “Hey! Don’t be alarmed, but I am going to do some house construction.”

Me: “That’s fine. What are you gonna do?”

Friend: “I’m going to replace walls and stuff to be more open and modern, and expand some things to make a living room and kitchen. :-)”

Me: “Ooh, I can’t wait to see it.”

(There’s radio silence in the chat for about 20 minutes when…)

Chat: “[Friend] tried to swim in lava.”

(About five minutes later…)

Chat: “[Friend] tried to swim in lava.”

(Five minutes later…)

Chat: “[Friend] burned to death.”

Me: “What on earth are you doing?!”

Friend: “You’ll see! :-)”

(She was digging out the area under our base and creating a natural-looking lava pool that was to then be covered in glass. She’s so lucky I decided to turn “keep inventory” on.)

It’s Not A Game To Some People

, , , , , , , | | Hopeless | August 15, 2019

The weekly game night at my college was just starting for the night and one of the regulars had brought a less common game called “Betrayal at House on the Hill.” I had already signed up to play, as had a new gamer who had never been to our game nights before. A classmate of mine, who I’d only seen at our game nights one or two times before, arrived and asked to join, as well.

This classmate was, without a doubt, the smartest person in our class; he had to be removed from the grading curve of one of our tests because he did so well he threw off the curve. However, he had a severe case of ADHD and was also somewhere on the less severe side of the autistic spectrum. He never explicitly told me his diagnoses, but I could recognize the symptoms from having volunteered with special needs children for so long. His ADHD meant that he could get overstimulated quickly when excited. When he got too overstimulated he would need to take a break to calm himself by “stimming,” basically repetitive actions to work out his stimulation. In his case, the stimming involved bouncing up and down on the balls of his feet and making a loud sort of keening sound in the back of his throat. While I recognized and understood the symptoms and why he was doing it, I could understand how this stimming could grow annoying to people who didn’t understand.

The owner of the game told my classmate that the game was already full, which I knew wasn’t true. I didn’t like the lie, but he was the owner of the game so I supposed he had the right to refuse someone from playing. My classmate accepted this and, after failing to get any of us to join in the game he wanted to play, he wandered off to ask people in other parts of the room if they wanted to play with him.  

While my classmate was away, a friend of the game owner arrived and joined in to the game. Unfortunately, my classmate wandered back over a little bit later, apparently having failed to find anyone to play his game with him, and noticed the addition of another player to our game.

The classmate said, “I thought you didn’t have room for more players?”

The game owner responded, in a very gruff and uncaring tone, “Yeah, well, we found more space.”

The classmate just said, “Oh,” in a dejected way.

Then, the new player spoke up, gesturing to the game owner’s friend. “Yeah, he’s taking my place. I didn’t know how long this game was when I signed up for it. I wouldn’t have had time to finish it, so I let him take my spot. I was planning to watch for a while, but if you want, maybe we can find a shorter game to play, instead?”

The new guy had jumped in so fast, and managed to sound so honest and casual about his statement, that I don’t think my classmate ever guessed that he had made up the excuse on the spot to explain the extra player. The two wandered off to play a card game, and my classmate did seem to enjoy himself, judging by how often he got overstimulated and had to stop to take a break for some stimming. 

As for me, I struggled to enjoy the game because I kept feeling really guilty for having been witness to such rude behavior and not having done anything. I’d like to think I’d have gotten around to doing something similar, but I was still processing how cruel the owner was by the time the other play had spoken up. Either way, I was very thankful someone was able to come up with a way to prevent my poor classmate from feeling rejected on one of the few times he tried to come out of his shell to socialize.

The new player who had sacrificed his spot at the game came to more of our game nights later, so I got to know him well and became friends with him. I learned later that he had been really excited to play “Betrayal” because he had only gotten to play it once or twice before but had really loved it. He also confessed that he never liked the card game he got dragged into playing with my classmate, instead, but leaving the game was the only idea he could think of at the moment to keep my classmate from being hurt. I’d eventually help to explain to my new friend about stimming and why the classmate acted the way he did; my friend had figured that the classmate had special needs but didn’t know any specifics beyond that. I also ended up eventually buying the “Betrayal at House on the Hill” game myself — being a board game addict who can’t help buying new games anyway — just so I could invite my friend to play his favorite game with me.

As far as I know, my classmate only attended a few other game nights that semester, it was pretty intermittent when he would show up. However, whenever he did come, my friend and I would both try to go out of our way to find a chance to play a game with him so he wouldn’t feel rejected.

Women Always End Up Supporting Men

, , , , , , | | Friendly | May 17, 2019

(I am playing a popular computer game with, among other things, multiple “classes” you can play as, such as Offense or Tank, and a voice chat system. The character I chose is a Support character, meaning she can heal other characters. The game is going well, and I notice that one of my teammates is at critical health.)

Me: *over voice chat* “Okay, [Teammate #1], I’ll be right over to heal you up.”

Teammate #1: “No, I don’t want your healing!”

Me: “All right…You do you…”

Teammate #1: “Hey! Hey! I’m dying over here! A little help!?”

Me: “Yup, be right over!”

Teammate #1: “Not you, b****!”

Me: “I – What? That’s rude! Besides, I am the only healer on the team! If you don’t want my healing, you are well and truly screwed.”

Teammate #2: “Dude, let her help you.”

Teammate #1: “I don’t want her f****** help! But can someone heal me?”

Me: “I’m not even going to try to help you.”

Teammate #1: *dies*

Charisma Is Clearly This Troll’s Lowest Attribute

, , , , , , | Friendly | April 18, 2019

I’m an avid player of a particular MMORPG. It isn’t the most well-known one in the genre, which I’m fine with since a smaller community generally means fewer trolls and the like. They certainly still pop up every now and again, as this incident demonstrated. For context, the game has several races to choose from, only two of which are basically human in appearance, and characters can be customized a fair amount; I enjoy making characters and have quite a few, but the one I was playing on this day was a humanoid woman with very dark brown skin.

I left the character standing around in a city while I took my dog on a brief walk, and came back to a wall of private messages from someone that started off demanding to know why I’d made a [racial slur]. I’m not sure if this person either wasn’t planning to wait for a reply or simply didn’t realize I was away and got angry at apparently being ignored, but they went on and on about how I was a [slur]-lover, forcing diversity into a fantasy world, complicit in white genocide, etc., and topped it all off with calling me a [gay, transphobic slur] for playing a female character who “wasn’t even wearing anything sexy.”

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time I’ve seen the “logic” that the only reason a man would play a female character outside of eye candy is if he’s gay or transgender.

The player who’d sent these messages wasn’t around by the time I came back — given the volume of text, I think they’d been blocked by the in-game spam prevention — although I wasn’t planning to reply, anyway. I simply blocked and reported them and went on my way. However, I couldn’t help but laugh at a few of their incorrect assumptions. First of all, I’m not white — though I’m not black like my character appeared to be, either. Second of all, I am gay… but I’m a gay woman who just doesn’t think a lady needs to be wearing a chainmail bikini to be sexy.

For all their ranting about me “taking the fun out of the game,” I don’t think they’re enjoying themselves all that much if such a little thing sets them off like that.

Poke-man-splaining Is So Sexy

, , , , , , | Romantic | April 16, 2019

(For a brief time during college, my friend group hangs out with a guy who fancies himself God’s gift to women and whose favored way of flirting is to find out what a woman likes and style himself as knowing far more about it than she does. I am the first in our friend group he tries this trick on. At the time, I am casually getting into the competitive side of the Pokemon games, which involves raising a team of six monsters to fight against other people’s teams of six monsters.)

Guy: “Let me show you my Pokemon team. It is perfectly crafted to counter all threats that can be thrown against it. I spent hours analyzing the top players to create it.”

Me: “Sure. I’m just running with some of my favorites and a strategy I like. They aren’t top-tier or anything; I just do this for fun.”

Guy: “Well, once the battle is over I’ll explain to you how to actually win.”

(The battle commences in all its Nintendo DS tension and glory. I wipe the floor with him.)

Guy: “You did not use proper Pokemon for real competition and your strategy was weak. I only created my team to win real competitive battles. Change your team and we’ll fight again.

Me: “They beat you well enough, but sure. This team is a group of spares I raised up that don’t fit with the strategy of my main bunch.”

(My victory this time is more hard fought, but just as decisive.)

Guy: “You aren’t using these Pokemon like a proper competitive player would, so I can’t predict your actions to counter them. Change your team and we’ll fight again.”

Me: “Okay… I do have half of an experimental gimmick team I could fill out with some reserves.”

Guy: “Use that.”

(Finally, after insisting I use the team of monsters that consists of my half-finished joke strategy and a few others that don’t fit with the strategy, he gets his victory.)  

Guy: “Now, let me tell you what you did wrong and explain how to do it right!”

(I did not listen to him, and it was not long before our friend group stopped hanging out with him. Part of me does wish I could meet him one more time for a rematch, since my half-complete, jokey gimmick team is now a fully functional and competitively viable powerhouse that, despite its ridiculousness, would absolutely destroy him.)