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What’s the deal with server rules?

Sorry to channel Jerry Seinfeld, but I’ve never been good with headlines.

There’s a particular Battlefield: Bad Company 2 server that I’m a huge fan of. It’s intended for newbies and has explicit rules that players are supposed to follow. If you’re under level 20, you can use any weapons that you want until you get to 10 kills. After that, you’ve got to use pistols, knives and grenades only. If you get to 20 kills, you’re only supposed to perform support tasks, like reviving people, capturing bases, etc. If you’re over level 20, the rules change a little. You can only use pistols, knives and grenades. After 10 kills, you’re supposed to perform support tasks only.

This server has been a great place for me to acclimate myself. I haven’t played a whole lot of competitive multiplayer shooters outside of Counter-Strike, so this was a great place for me to learn. I’ve become a much better player, much more well-rounded than I would have been otherwise. But the problem is that I frequently encounter people that don’t play by the rules.

I get that everyone wants to play their own way, but what I don’t get is why you’d go to a server and play so contrarily to the server rules when there are plenty of available servers that support more open play styles. Do they realize they’re being total dicks? Do they feel good when they blast away at new people and get cheap, easy kills? I can’t imagine it’s very satisfying.

Please, if you play this way, defend your choice. Explain how you’re not a dick. Because to me, I can’t see the satisfaction. It’s a hollow victory. Are you really that stat concerned that you won’t follow rules simply to get cheap kills, or are you too lazy find a server that doesn’t have explicit rules against your play style?

Or are all multiplayer games just populated by large, roving bands of assholes? Am I just shouting into a vacuum?

The author of this fine article

is an Associate Editor at Thunderbolt, having joined in February 2003.

Gentle persuasion

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