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10 most frustrating things about gaming online

 

8) Connecting to the server

Let's assume for a moment that we don't know how the technology works. We don't care if the server is busy, broken or bewildered. All we want is a quick game of Street Fighter IV. Or UT3. Or Halo 3. Or anything, for that matter. We don't know what's worse – being unable to connect to the lobby in the first place or being told that we lost our connection to the server. If we ever see that server, we'll be forcibly connecting it to a sledgehammer.


Above: With all that jargon, the button should probably read 'Erm... ok...'

 

9) Other people

Ironic, really, that the greatest thing about playing online is also its worst. Meeting an idiot in an otherwise stupendous game is more of a downer than a tranquiliser dart to the spine. Yet, sadly, it's pretty much an inevitability.

Sometimes it's people deliberately ganging up on another player (even in a co-op game like Left 4 Dead), or noobs wading in and destroying the best laid plans of tricky raids (Leeeerooooy!). Then there's the Hip Hop guy who plays distorted 'beats' through his headset mic and the kid who insists on singing a made-up, tuneless song to everyone.

Sure, you can add them to your blocked list, but by then, the damage has been done. It's just too easy for a brilliant game to be spoiled by one person.

 

10) Trying to play with friends


The easiest way to avoid idiots is to play with people you know (unless you know idiots, then you're screwed). Some games are beautifully simple to use socially. Pretty much anything from Valve will give you a specific 'play with friends' option that lets you connect seamlessly to your online buddies.

But other games are not so easy. Whether it's the procedure of setting up a clan or simply getting the game to connect to your mate's machine, the process becomes a game in itself. IP tweaks here, NAT types there - everyone's working towards a common goal until someone wins. It would be a beautiful thing if it weren't so laden with expletives.  

It seems UFC 2009 Undisputed has been particularly tricky to get running online with a friend. This post and reply in the game's official forum sums up the joys of online gaming in one go:

 

04 Aug, 2009

How not to be a total jerk in Street Fighter IV online
10 tips to help you make friends and influence people

 

The best griefing videos ever
Playing is one thing, playing to annoy is better

 

Online gaming's dirtiest tricks
And other tales from the dark side of plugged-in playtime

88 comments

  • RedhawkAce - March 4, 2011 5:28 a.m.

    Oh man this is so true I love this article it describes every little annoying piece of crap there is to playing online yet we still do it "hhmmmmmmmm smart we are No!?"
  • AuthorityFigure - August 11, 2009 8:33 a.m.

    You don't have to convince me that online gaming sux. I never go online anymore because of all of those reasons you've mentioned (and more). NPCs are always there, they don't trash talk, glitch, cheat or quit. Ever.
  • disturbedanomaly36 - August 10, 2009 5:11 p.m.

    i dont have that much of a problem with 10, me and my friends usualy play either local or on the same Xbox also, 4 5 and 9 are always bitches cause of those effing hackers and those dumbasses killing people on THEIR OWN TEAM
  • Cwf2008 - August 9, 2009 9:02 a.m.

    Ah yes the one about the DAMN PEOPLE WHO SPEAK IN OTHER EFFING LANGUAGES WHEN OBVIOUSLY EVERYONE ELSE IN THE LOBBY SPEAKS ENGLISH! Ugh that pisses me off so much. Especially the French. Bastards are so cocky always making fun of the Americans. Guess they forget who saved their asses and whos still better than them. Oh and their accent...dont get me started on them. I always make killing French people a priority...even if their on my own team
  • The_Lurcher - August 8, 2009 9:03 p.m.

    What annoys me is when people give you negative feed back on xbox live because you won't accept their freind request. Just because I dont want everyone I've ever talked to online to be my freind doesn't mean I'm being inapropriate or unsporting maybe you need more freinds but I have plenty, now leave me ALONE!
  • doomdude - August 7, 2009 5:34 p.m.

    dude yall are right and for the record I HATE LAGGERS and stupid noobs, not the ones who have a brain just the stupid ones
  • RandomIdoit - August 5, 2009 10:37 p.m.

    wait I just remembered something from when I did have online. I was playing Mario kart on balloon fight and EVERY TIME I got a mega mushroom, so did my opponent, EVEN WHEN HE WAS NO WHERE NEAR AN ITEM BLOCK, when I got a shell, he got a mega mushroom altough he did not touch an item block since forever. I THINK HE WAS CHEATING!! Just wondering, is that anyone here at gamesradar?
  • reyalejandro13 - August 5, 2009 9:03 p.m.

    yeah, I hate the one kid who thinks he's hot sh*t in the lobby, but when the game's done and he's been thoroughly destroyed, he starts making up reasons for loss. That, and when losers quit. especially when they're on MY team!
  • Rhesus - August 5, 2009 7:28 p.m.

    #2 Nuthin' worse than a laggy match on GOW2
  • LittleTaco - August 5, 2009 6:42 p.m.

    most of this crap happens 2 me on battlefield all the time i hate it when the thousand bullet 1 happen thank god it doesnt happen often
  • J-spit - August 5, 2009 6:37 p.m.

    I hate it when a**holes spam me in SF4 & Blazblue and then quit when I kick their asses! RRRRGH!!!
  • NovaProspekt - August 5, 2009 5:26 p.m.

    hahaha I love how they show HALO for the "shoot ppl 100 times and it does nothing" bit. ...So true, I hate that game...
  • Unoriginal - August 5, 2009 2:41 p.m.

    The language problem is even bigger on Europian Servers seeing as how one in every 3 persons doesn't speak English.
  • Auron - August 5, 2009 12:06 p.m.

    People (kids, weird me saying it since I'm 14) quit when they lose are my number 1 enemies. I get that alot when I feel like playing good old Dead or Alive 4.
  • Tofu - August 5, 2009 8:09 a.m.

    i have learned to play rockband wile on the phone with my girlfriend... much more difficultthan it sounds
  • Stupidturkey - August 5, 2009 7:21 a.m.

    Don't forget the joys of setting up a home network with more than one computer and multiple xbox's
  • waynski1457 - August 5, 2009 6:54 a.m.

    Sure you listed other people, but as was said, cheaters really needed a mention. Cheating online is never, ever, ever a good thing.
  • CH3BURASHKA - August 5, 2009 6:31 a.m.

    I don't have a new console (rocking a PS2), but after reading this, I'm going to scrounge my money, buy a 360, buy a multiplayer game (any will do for this), and yell crazy shit in Russian. Strangely I never thought of doing that.
  • Christrigg1 - August 5, 2009 5:22 a.m.

    that thousand bullet thing pisses me off. i was playing call of duty world at war i was online shooting this guy for 5 seconds with a full auto gun right in the head, he shoots me in the stomach once or twice and im killed instantly!
  • Fizzmonkey - August 5, 2009 2:53 a.m.

    I don't know how many times i experienced each of these online problems. And yes, other people are the worst part of online play.

Showing 1-20 of 88 comments

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