Even if you don’t know what you are doing …
One of the most intimidating parts of getting started with online games is overcoming the fear of ruining things for other players. It’s one thing to make a game and make mistakes at home, but it’s completely different to play and make mistakes that can cause the game to crash for others.
But there’s no reason to let this fear stop you or another beginner from having fun. This article will give you the details of online games so that you can get started with the security you need to continue.
The first step anyone unfamiliar with online games should take is learning how to play offline. You can read the game manual and avoid seeing the infamous “RTFM” acronym scroll across the screen. Do you know what this acronym means? It stands for “Read the fucking manual” and is thrown by serious players to vulnerable newbies who interrupt a game with questions like “What is this place?” or “What should I do?”
You can search the web for discussion groups, FAQs, and game-related tutorials. And you could learn more from the game-specific Usenet newsgroups. In other words, you could do your “homework”. Some of the types of information you want to learn include how to play, how to create characters, how to assemble equipment, and how to implement some clever strategies. Trust us when we say your playmates will appreciate it!
In addition to reading how to play an online game, you can familiarize yourself with the game’s interface. Just as you searched the web for textual instructions for a game, you can also search the web for a screenshot of a game (or series of screenshots). Having a graphical representation (.gif or .jpg image) of a game on the screen gives you the opportunity to memorize where all the game controls are. Knowing where everything is in a game before you play will speed things up not only for you, but for everyone else as well. Nobody wants to wait for you to search for an inventory panel or message screen in a game when the location of these items is obvious to everyone else.
Once you start a game, don’t let the pressure of staying in the game stop you from doing the unthinkable: dying. A character who dies in a game is inevitable at certain points, and unless he voluntarily lets go of a losing situation, he runs the risk of delaying the game for everyone else. It’s like a game of chess. If it is checkmate, it is checkmate. Call a day and start over. Whatever you do, don’t wait for a magical fairy to come and rescue you. Let your character die with dignity.
Likewise, you don’t want to take death personally. Remember that online games are still just a game. A character who dies in a game is not representative of your character as a person. Turn death into a learning experience. At the very least, you will learn how to run an online game by learning all the things you shouldn’t do.
Most importantly, make sure your computer has what it takes to keep up with the current pace of an online game. Don’t try to play an online game on a slow computer or slow internet connection. In fact, if you still use the phone connection, find another hobby. A slow processor and connection will ensure instant death because other players won’t politely wait for their own defeat. They will crush you like an insect.
Find a computer designed for online gaming and get a DSL or ISDN Internet connection. You will need a fast processor, a high quality graphics card and a matching sound machine.
By following these simple tips, you will have passed the “rookie” test and earned respect as a serious player much faster than if you had worked your way through what others pride themselves on as “the ultimate pastime”.