No Man's Sky: culture or cult?


Gamers or children. Angry children can get very angry and they do hot have the maturity to deal with it. We are talking hundreds of nasty posts, not hundreds of thousands. So no cult, just spoilt children with indulgent wealthy parents and that overweening sense of false superiority, that comes with it.
Not that they should not be tracked down and be made to apologise.


Did the kids threaten death on rock journalists?

Because this garbage exists. Gaming isn’t corrupting youth. Game culture is
diseased, though.


Yeah, this is a constant problem - with games that get a lot of pre-release attention and especially with Kickstarters. The game that people fall in love with is necessarily the game that’s in their head. People frequently get angry because, also necessarily, the two games - the real one and the expected one - rarely match. (And some people don’t seem to realize that the game in their head was never going to be anywhere but in their head.) I expect there’s going to be a huge amount of anger over this game, no matter how great it ends up being, because there’s a lot of excitement based entirely on assumptions and projections.

I don’t think it’s the fans (although the demographics of the group of people who identify as “gamers” is probably changing), but what are considered acceptable ways of communicating (thanks to the rise of various internet subcultures) has become really extreme.


Or maybe it will be the most egregious thing that happens to them… lucky them.


It’s not complicated. And it it’s not unique to gamer culture. When there are no consequences for making the most outrageous threats (mainly death and rape because morons don’t have a lot of imagination), there’s a subset of people who will make them, a subset larger than the smaller, somewhat but not entirely overlapping, subset who will follow through on those threats. That lager subset of talkers provide cover for the subset of those who act. But the talkers don’t care that they’re aiding actual murderers and rapists, because they’re cowards whose morality is constrained only by the prospect of punishment, which they don’t face for making anonymous threats, and they’ll do whatever they can get away so long as it entails no danger to themselves, demonstrating their cowardice. They are, in essence, the only people more pathetic than the actual murders and rapists for whom they provide cover.


I can’t help but think of Star Trek fandom where, for example, once people knew that there was a new series scheduled for 2017 and knew who the initial executive producer was, knew that CBS had ruined the show and that the franchise was dead.

Or going back more than 20 years, Malcolm McDowell received death threats over the death of James T. Kirk. I’d hate to think how many death threats J. J. Abrams has received from Trekkies and Star Wars EU fans.


The solution seems straightforward enough. If anonymous threats carried the same consequences, or any consequences at all, as threatening people in meatspace, the empty threats would evaporate. The question I have is whether the amoral oxygen thieves who make these threats can be identified without giving up privacy. I’m not technically savvy enough to answer that. I do, however, find it telling that governments and their organs are prepared deprive the public of privacy and spend hundreds of billions in a so far unsuccessful attempt to prevent one of the rarest dangers on Earth, namely terrorism, but not to stop people who shield real murderers and rapists.


Neither culture, nor cult. Just a handful of immature people angry that the game they’ve been waiting for 3 and a half years for and was about to be released was delayed for 2 months and vented by sending empty and baseless death threats.

Move along people, nothing to see here.


Waiting for the man. He said he’d be fifteen minutes! Call him again! Damn, can we not find a more reliable guy?


Nope, they’re not going to have progressed to ‘young adults’ no matter what age they might be - they’re immature kids


Shit, the people people fall in love with are the people in their head. We’re all fucking crazy, basically. I would like them to hurry the fuck up with my spaceship and personal pocket universe though, I must say.


there’s so much right in what you’ve said.

i don’t necessarily believe the issue with talkers is consequences, and i don’t necessarily believe they are at all similar to those whom they are providing cover for. sometimes, yes certainly; but not always.

i don’t know how to categorize it exactly, there’s a fair continent who don’t think they’re responsible for the bad outcomes. some think it’s funny, some think it’s an acceptable way of talking. i feel like the core part is the reaction they get from their peer talkers and even from their target

it’s a clique. just like a fraternity, or the good ol boy network. entrance is paid by putting up with abuse, and then status is raised by dishing it out: ironically, cynically, laughingly.

it’s why i don’t think this is a gamer-only issue or even a nerd-only issue. racist jokes, for instance, pre-internet were an expression of this same behavior. lots of the trolling misogyny online seems to be too.


John Rogers (TV writer, producer, creator of Leverage, etc…) had a good observation on Twitter the other day. It started as a reaction to

And proceeded over the next dozen and a half tweets.

So I think he’s onto something. It’s not that the acceptable ways of communicating have changed so much as that a lot of the boundaries that separated a creator from their fans have fallen down, either semi-intentionally or by accident.

On a lighter note…

I like to use the word Gargamel. I avoid calling down the swarm while still being understandable to the other people in the conversation (plus, I can pretend it’s all just an episode of the Smurfs.)


Its all bullshit. This game will never come out. They just wanted your “Early Access” type money.
Stick with the Dangerous series.


Keep in mind, that people who self identify as “gamers” aren’t just people who play games. They are people for whom games are a very important part of their lives. I think in just about any endeavor, there are range of people, from those who are casual to those who who take it very seriously indeed. I used to be a historical reenactor, and people run the gamut, from farbs to stitch counters. I was at a wargaming convention and one of the hotel staff told my friend, “Naah you guys are fine. But the bridge ladies? Those women are MEAN and NASTY.”


I suspect what it is is this:

Similar to Spore, just watching a trailer for this game creates the fantasy of an Everything Simulator. A game you could never get bored of, because it’s so complex.

A game to end all games.

I can feel the allure…

Of course, like Spore (although I never played it, I know people who did), even though it seems like an infinitely complex game, after a bit you’re like, “Well, that’s about enough of that.”

But until you actually play it, you can…practically…taste it!


I don’t think anyone was “blaming” mental health issues (if by blaming you mean waving this away).

When unhealthy behaviors or thought patterns are, as you say, normalized in a culture, it makes that culture mentally toxic: the culture A) attracts people predisposed to those thoughts and behaviors, and B) champions and enables those thoughts and behaviors instead of providing healthier alternatives.

There is a huge mental health issue here—a public health issue.


That’s the line.

People are having a tough time feeling fulfilled in life, they look for a way out. This will be a great way out.

‘I’m a starship trader, a voyager, a discoverer’ - and the key is - they are, and will be. From their perception.

I love games, but anyone who has played has to confess sometimes they’re used to escape stress etc.

What’ll it take? 12, 24 years until there is an anti-game fringe? “Live off the land and know how to survive” kind of thing.


Blizzard at least releases something. Valve and Half Life 3 on the other hand…

Yeah, I don’t think they’re actually working on it, or if they are they get sidetracked and go on tangents that end up full games, like what if Alex and one of the alien dudes was in your party the full time… that’s not a bad idea… bam, lets make Left 4 Dead in stead!


To be clear, they’re into the idea of what they fantasize the game to be.

No Man’s Sky is going to have an impossibly difficult time matching expectations, and I’ll bet this was part of the reason for the delay, as they desperately try to pack more content into it.

I think that the first amazing reporting of the game has stuck in people’s minds, and refuses to let go, even as players learn more and more facts about the game.

Wait, it’s a MMOG but we’re never going to actually be able to meet any players?

"Wait, pretty much none of my actions will ever have any real effect on the world, except for naming some planets and species that no one else is ever going to see?

That’s exactly it.