Why are there disruptive MMORPG players?
By Black Label
August 2006

Why are people disruptive in the world of MMORPG? We did some research online and some
interviewing and found out some obvious but some surprising answers.

One of the most common reasons why people are disruptive is because they are immature. We forget
that in the MMORPG world, the age range can be anywhere from 12 to 70. A major population of the
MMORPG world will be children under 18 years of age and some people, no matter the age, will
always be immature. Although not all, most immature people view MMORPG as just another game.
They wish to master it and remain in control at all times much like playing their traditional Nintendo,
Play Station or Xbox games. However, MMORPG adds something different that the other platforms
have been trying to achieve; the social interaction and community element.

In the real world, people understand their place in society and respect the adult world around them. In
MMORPG, this concept differs. They view other characters as a 2D avatar just like any monster or
NPC. Some of them don’t realize that there are feelings behind each individual player characters
because they are not looking them right in the eye. In the real world, most immature people would
still communicate properly to strangers and share findings with friends. In the MMORPG, the same
child might curse at strangers and steal all the loot. The main reason is because there is no obvious
consequence in the MMORPG world and they don’t know who they are hurting. There are no police,
parents or teachers to discipline if you loot, gank, or harass another player in the game or on the
forums. That is the main reason why there is a growing display of these inappropriate behaviors. That
is why you have so many MMORPG jerks in the game. I bet if you confront them in real life, they
would appear to be angels and you would never have expected this type of behavior from this person.

There is not a whole lot you can do regarding this. However, that’s what guilds are for. People want
to play with appropriate, well behaved and considerate folks. Everyone plays this game for one
reason: to have fun. No one should have fun at the expense of others. That’s why it’s important for
guild officers and leaders to be the police, the teacher and the parent to prevent this from happening.

Unfortunately, there is another group of player who are disruptive because of pleasure. Its one thing
when one doesn’t know any better, its another when one is malignant and perform disruptive acts so
they get a kick out of it. You all have heard of those who are notorious for ganking, kill stealing,
forum trolling, etc. Some people even take it to the next level. There was a famous incident in WoW
where a guild of idiots ambushed a real life funeral service held by the community on a particular
server. The community gathered in remembrance of a well liked person who has passed away. They
held it on a PvP zone because it was her favorite place in the game. Instead, the people gathered were
ambushed by a group of insensitive thugs. They do it for pleasure and for attention seeking much like
those criminals who rob for fun or shoot people in schools. The good news was that the server was
in uproar and united to hunt down every last member and to kill them on the spot if anyone displayed
the guild name. I have no doubt that these idiots did it for the thrill of it. I have no doubt they did it
because they did not perceive any real life consequences. But I am sure they did not find it so funny
when the entire server was now after them whenever they log on.

There will always be disruptive players in MMORPG. because people are a lot braver online than in
real life. That leads to a growing trend of those who harass and stalk the female players despite being
rejected. Perhaps it’s the lack of looking in their eyes and saying “No thanks. I am not interested.”
Perhaps once again, there is a lack of consequences. I’ve heard many stories from my friends about
people chasing them online. The disruptive player would send constant private tells, follow the girl to
every zone, or just interrupt whatever the girl player is doing. These disruptive players do it for
attention seeking much like a little boy will play with a girl’s hair and run off.

I think once you understand why people are being disruptive. Your tolerance for such activity is
lowered. You will be more willing to take a more active stance against any childish behavior and
reinforce your guild rules. As a guild leader, you need to understand that this unfortunately evil does
exit and you should have a plan on how to handle such situations.      
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