Monday, May 26, 2014

Why Online Games Turn Players Into Psychopaths

Screenshot: ysarts via Steam Community 

Three men stand on a deserted street, their hands in the air. One wears a green T-shirt and a motorcycle helmet. The others wear bright yellow down jackets. They are surrounded by four armed men.

“Gentlemen,” a man called Klyka says, “we are going to play a very interesting game.”

He commands the hostages to drop their axes, then continues.

“This is DayZ,” he says. “Someone always has to die when players meet. But we’re going to make this interesting.”

He directs the men in yellow to sit cross-legged, 20 yards from each other, axes midway between them.

There can be only one yellow jacket in this group, he says. The two men consider what he says.

Klyka goes on. “When I shoot in the air you guys will run for your axes, and you’ll try to grab them.” The last man standing, he says, will be released.

DayZ is an online PC game set in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse. Surviving the undead hordes is difficult, but at least the zombies are predictable. The bigger threat comes from your fellow players, who are just as likely to help you as kill you.

Dying in DayZ isn’t like dying in other videogames. The game, developed by Bohemia Interactive, has “configured death with an extreme level of consequentiality not found in other online first-person-shooters,” researchers at the University of Melbourne wrote last year. “Unlike other FPS games, in which death is a minor 2-10 second setback before rematerialization, death in DayZ involves the permanent death of this character, and loss of all items and advancement.”

For the rest of the story: http://www.wired.com/2014/05/psychopaths-dayz-rust/

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...