Near the beginning of this week there was a patch for “Call of Duty: Black Ops II“. This is pretty standard for games. Most of the patch was to patch the most recent downloadable content “Vengeance” and its new “Zombies” game mode “Buried“. But there was a small not at the end of it.
“Multiplayer game weapon balance” [or words to that effect]
This has made the community go bat-shi*t insane! To explain what they balanced, here’s the list;
Multiplayer Game Balancing
- AN-94: Damage slightly reduced.
- DSR 50: Rate of fire reduced.
- Ballista: Rate of fire slightly reduced
That’s it. The reduced the damage of the AN-94 assault rifle, and decreased the rate of fire for the DSR and Ballista bolt-action sniper rifles. I’m not a COD player but the response some players had where interesting.
Some had a sensible over-reaction;
How to fix the DSR patch https://t.co/rfGcMPvVau
— Danceive (@xDeceive) July 23, 2013
Some where more responsive than reactionary;
— NASSIIIIIIIIIM (@OhLmBo) July 25, 2013
Some where critical of the people shouting;
Honest opinion? DSR nerf was necessary for QS’ers. If you’re a good sniper, you’ll be fine. AN-94… shrug… M8 + FAL > better AR’s anyway.
— Ryan Wyatt (@Fwiz) July 23, 2013
Others sent death threats. I can’t show you those and wouldn’t want to. This reaction was neither sensible, reactionary or even an over-reaction. All those can be explained. Sending death threats is just stupid beyond all measure. This is the nasty side of the gaming community that rants and raves and the slightest provocation.
Most of the death threats were aimed at Treyarch design director David Vonderhaar who took to twitter to talk about the patch. He put out tweets explaining the decision for the patch;
“The best performing sniper rifle and one of the best performing guns in the game got detuned because it climbed out of its power band.”
— David Vonderhaar (@DavidVonderhaar) July 23, 2013
If you look at some of the responses he got from this, you can see the hill he had to climb to get away. So Activision community manager Dan Amrich stepped in to defend Vonderhaar. On Amrich’s blog he wrote;
“One of Vahn’s many responsibilities is to keep the game as balanced as possible. Weapons are designed with pros and cons; they perform in specific ways for specific reasons. But if, in the course of millions of hours of gameplay and the data to go with it, weapons are found to be more effective or less effective than they should be to keep that performance balanced, they are adjusted. This has happened with every Call of Duty game that’s come out for the last few years, and it will continue to happen — a gun’s stats being adjusted should not be a surprise to anybody at this point.
Yet Vahn often gets told he should die in a fire or kill himself or is a horrible person. If anybody 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? 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 assholes. Because the immature, whiny assholes are louder.”
This should cause the COD community to look at itself and think what sort of image it wants to convey. Ranting and sending death threats only give the media, and at the moment the government, ammunition to restrict the scale and scope of video games. It only hurts yourself. So chin up, stop typing that angry comment, and remember that it’s only a game.
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