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Playing to Win

JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
Reading about @Rajio's frustrations with Overwatch recently got me thinking about a great article I read a while back called "Playing to Win."

It's broken into three parts and discusses the mentality needed to compete at games on a competitive level, but also how to improve your own mindset and the things we do that hold us back. It's an article that, in all honesty, applies to other aspects of life aside from just games.

Give it a read. Part 1 is here. Part 2 is here. Part 3 is here.

Comments

  • I haven't played a general multiplayer game that I NEEDED to win, probably since Halo 3. I'm really glad I don't play games like that anymore. There was lots of anger, shit talking to get people riled up to lose their cool and gain an edge. Maybe making a couple of people crying.

    I can also say Halo 3 at the time had a pretty great community(Pre party chat) I made tons of friends playing Halo 3 outside of my hardcore friends. Compared to same games and the toxicity that exist, Halo 4 had a pretty bad community I noticed
    Juxtapose
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    Rajio said:

    TLDR?

    They're great articles. Seriously, read them. The parts I found most interesting are the people who limit themselves with their own home-brewed versions of games.
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    Juxtapose said:

    Rajio said:

    TLDR?

    They're great articles. Seriously, read them. The parts I found most interesting are the people who limit themselves with their own home-brewed versions of games.
    Here, I'll quote a part early from the first article that's relevant:

    "...he (the scrub) usually believes that he is playing to win, but he is bound up by an intricate construct of fictitious rules that prevent him from ever truly competing. These made-up rules vary from game to game, of course, but their character remains constant. In Street Fighter, for example, the scrub labels a wide variety of tactics and situations "cheap." So-called "cheapness" is truly the mantra of the scrub."

    Your complaints about Overwatch teammates reminded me of this, because your complaining, toxic teammates are binding themselves up by thinking your character, whom they don't understand, is a poor choice and hurting them when you constantly prove the opposite.

    They're creating their own "rules" in their heads that don't actually exist, and are thus hurting that game an the community in general as a result.

    Again, I highly recommend the articles.
  • IgnitionCOREIgnitionCORE Centurion
    edited July 2016
    i haven't finished reading all of it yet, but this reminds so much of discussions i had in the past on the Epic Games Forums regarding Gears of War

    so many things were considered taboo by different players and they set their own guidelines and complained for patches/nerfs because they couldn't defeat players who were better than them

    before i played exclusively ranked in Gears, i played with randoms and some friends who wanted to have set rules in their lobbies. no chainsaw. no melee. no Lancer fire. if we did any of this we were kicked. so dumb. all those things are part of the game and they have counters

    one of my friends, who isn't on my list anymore for obvious reasons, would stack his team with friends that lived close to him, impose his rules on how the game would be played and then use host advantage to stack the deck further in his favour. Ironically, this was like hyper training for me and it made me a better player. i was also kicked a lot along the way......no one takes away my melee

    there was such a big divide in the community when it came to the Gnasher. most believed it was skillful while others refused to use it to the point they would keep their Lancer out regardless of the situation. they were dooming themselves for frustration because they didn't want to become well-rounded players

    it was the same for tactics like wall bouncing or weapon sliding. both widely accepted in the competitive community but difficult for the so-called "scrub" to grasp so they condemned them

    toxicity in Overwatch comes out because the game is very team-oriented. in most Gears games, you could carry your team on your own, but in OW you will not be able to compete if there is one weak link in the chain and if there are two then you are totally fucked

    that's why the threat of being deranked looms large in OW competitive games, but there are definitely similarities

    people don't like losing and become sore losers, they can't accept that they are sometimes overmatched or that their tactics don't work as well and they refuse to learn from their mistakes
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    @IgnitionCORE Great post. I never played any of the Gears of War franchise competitively, mainly enjoyed Gears of War 2's Horde Mode, but I heard about the Gnasher "issues" from others.

    So your former friend though, he had a rule for no Lancer fire; as in you couldn't even shoot the signature weapon of the franchise in which every character typically starts with and has access to?

    But yeah, your post has excellent examples of players limiting themselves with "home brewed" versions of the game, and it's a shame.

    Starting around 2009, mainly with Halo Wars as I recall, my mentally really started to change to that of the articles I linked to, long before I read them. I had that mentality earlier in my competitive Starcraft and Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos days, but not to as well developed. I'd still scream imbalances at times, real or false, but at the same time look to figure out how to overcome them. Huntresses from the "Noob Elves," as I used to call them, come to mind as a strong example.

    With Halo Wars, the approach I took was the game was what it was, and I could complain about balance, or I could post and inquire with better players about what happened, what I did, and ask for feedback about how to handle the situation next time to better improve and understand the game. A really good player who oft trolled and talked down to others apparently liked that and actually played several games with me to teach me better fundamentals, and my game improved dramatically because of it.

    This mentality has also really, really helped me when learned and mastering the two most recent Mortal Kombat titles, of which you all know I've quite loved, and I intend to take this mentality with me into StarCraft II when I get around to playing that properly Online.

    My personal goal is to always play to my personal best and to try and improve my caliber as a player. To accept responsibility for my own losses and mistakes and to learn from them to push myself further.
  • Juxtapose said:


    My personal goal is to always play to my personal best and to try and improve my caliber as a player. To accept responsibility for my own losses and mistakes and to learn from them to push myself further.

    This is generally what I always try to do as a player as well. Another reason why it's really hard for me to surrender a game of league. I could forfeit at 20 or I can try my hardest to see if there is a way to turn things around.

    I didn't read the full article but I can't really fully take it to heart. I am a firm believer of finding a character or playstyle you like and then getting good with that, rather than trying to find the most OP thing.

    For example: Back when I first started playing League a champion was released named Quinn, I thought her lore was decent and her general design was cool and the thought of kick-flipping off people's faces sounded awesome. So I decided to save up my IP and play her, it also coincided with my interest for playing ADC as a role.

    Objectively. Quinn sucks as an ADC. She's an okay top laner, she will force the team to pick a tanky jungler so that they have a front line or be forced to really win the game early.

    Her abilities as an ADC are really weak due to bugs regarding her passive (Which they did fix a few months down the line), some quality of life changes that she desperately needed and she is out ranged by every other ADC with the exception of one.

    I'd say the only thing going for her at the time was the fact that the meta did favour early game champions and Quinn had early game power. (Her level two power spike was only matched by one other character.)

    Needless to say I got rocked. Hard. But I wanted to learn ADC and more importantly I wanted to learn Quinn. I now have more pentas on Quinn than I do on any other champion.
  • Law212Law212 Centurion
    i always win so ....
    Juxtapose
  • I don't play to win...which is why I stay away from MP for the most part. I play for the stories and the worlds created.
    Juxtapose
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    Law212 said:

    i always win so ....

    Tell that to my Piercing Mileena.
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion



    I didn't read the full article but I can't really fully take it to heart. I am a firm believer of finding a character or playstyle you like and then getting good with that, rather than trying to find the most OP thing.

    If you read the article, you'll find it actually doesn't say to find the most OP thing, it simply states that many highly competitive players will find what appears to be the most OP thing and use it to win. _But_, competing at such a high level, someone will often find a counter and the thing will no loner be OP.

    That was only possible because people were "abusing" it and others had to develop counters. The game grew as a result, rather than people who stagnate by avoiding such things.
  • RajioRajio Centurion
    I have told this story before but it is a fond memory from the Xbox Live heyday.

    Playing Rainbow 6 Vegas with a regular teammate of mine, we end up on a clan's server (before random matchmaking was prevalent) ... the entire enemy team had matching gamertags indicating their clan. not clan tags. matching gamertags, so you know they were serious. lol. my team with my buddy was rough when we joined. everyone was getting decimated. so much that everyone kept quitting the match aside from me and my buddy (and the clan team). so me and my buddy put on our big boy pants, turn up our mics, and start wrecking shop using teh teamwork glitch. we do it for one game and the clan team crys that we were lucky. we do it for a second game (by a bigger margin) and now they're complaining. back in the lobby now they're complaining that we only won because we were spamming grenades. me and my buddy didnt even have lethal grenades in our kits so it was hilarious that they were accusing us of this noob tactic. obviously if we were spamming grenades the solution is to keep your distance our of grenade range (which is what we did to beat them.) so they decide to ban grnades. in R6 server hosts can restrict a limited number of items/weapons in a game. i think it was 3? so they restricted all the lethal grenades. okay, no problem except now this fundamentally changes the nature of the game. my buddy and i break out riot sheilds. if you have no explosives, good luck killing us. lol. but wait, theres more. we also notice that they banned frags, incindiaries and C4 but there is a fourth type of explosive. one that nobody ever really uses. Breaching charges! So just for a laugh we equip those too. The match starts and my buddy and I run to a central room. Getting there before the enemy team we close the two sets of doors and each setup breaching charges on each. Then we scope under each door with our cameras (this lets you see the other side of the door). We're sitting there a while wondering why we dont see or hear anything. then i see the barrel of a gun slowly emerge from teh corner where my door is. My finger is hovering over the detonate button, but I wait. Slowly the gun barrel comes around the corner and I see the whole player. Then a second. Then their whole team. They're all clustered up with their backs to eachother, going slow as fuck and watching all directins. they look scared as hell, which is fine. a little cautious play is good in ranbow. but this was crazy. their whole team-ball comes around the corner and is standing outside the door where i am, and have a breaching charge. i am giddy. as soon as they all get nice and close and i see the leader going to open the door I hit the button. The blast instantly kills their entire clan.

    There was no trash talking after that. I was instantly booted from the server, along with my buddy. We laughed for days about that one.
    JuxtaposeEchoGolfSierraDoosLactos
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    Great story @Rajio. So elite, they have home brewed rules. Too funny.
  • MSQGannerMSQGanner Centurion
    edited July 2016
    Juxtapose said:

    Law212 said:

    i always win so ....

    Tell that to my Piercing Mileena.
    You guys should totally settle this with a dance off and the winner will, well, win.

  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    MSQGanner said:

    Juxtapose said:

    Law212 said:

    i always win so ....

    Tell that to my Piercing Mileena.
    You guys should totally settle this with a dance off and the winner will, well, win.

    Ugh, with my two left feet; nope.
  • you didn't hear? two left feet is the new meta
  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion

    you didn't hear? two left feet is the new meta

    Ugh. Needs a hotfix.
  • Law212Law212 Centurion
    after I beat halo 4 a while ago, I went online for the first time in ages and got first place. I should see if I can watch the replay of that match because it was pretty good.
    Juxtapose
  • MSQGannerMSQGanner Centurion
    Juxtapose said:

    MSQGanner said:

    Juxtapose said:

    Law212 said:

    i always win so ....

    Tell that to my Piercing Mileena.
    You guys should totally settle this with a dance off and the winner will, well, win.

    Ugh, with my two left feet; nope.
    If Starlord can do it and save the universe in the process then you can too #NoExcuses

  • JuxtaposeJuxtapose Centurion
    MSQGanner said:

    Juxtapose said:

    MSQGanner said:

    Juxtapose said:

    Law212 said:

    i always win so ....

    Tell that to my Piercing Mileena.
    You guys should totally settle this with a dance off and the winner will, well, win.

    Ugh, with my two left feet; nope.
    If Starlord can do it and save the universe in the process then you can too #NoExcuses

    I do dance a mean Commander Shepard.
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