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Multiplayer: The Battle -- Round-1
By John "Award" Del Percio, June 14, 2000
Also Featuring:
Welton "Eidolon" Maisenhelder
Ke "Cryoborg" Xu
Forest "LordHavoc" Hale

LordHavoc's Rant: The Straight, The Narrow, and The Ugly Truth

It's short, it's sweet, and it's to the point. Havoc managed to sum up in a brief list format what I couldn't in 4 pages. Hats off to him, and his wonderful logical views. This one pretty much sums up the rest of the down point's I forgot about the "multiplayer experience". Bullet-proof defense, woudln't you agree?

My reasons for disliking multiplayer are:

Cheaters: Who doesn't hate them? They ruin any competitive game. Who wants to see a guy cruising around a level while his computer shoots rockets out his back?

Lag: Not much to say here, everyone hates lag, ruining your aim, preventing you from deftly dodging an incoming rocket... Lag is slowly improving as internet backbones and ISPs upgrade, but it is easily the second most annoying part of the 'multiplayer experience', right below cheaters.

Simple gameplay: Running around shooting the opposing team, while defending something for your team, is extremely boring. I don't care how many teams or what their petty objectives are, there is nothing to get involved in, nothing to immerse yourself in.

Lack of progress: You get a big gun, you kill a few guys, you die, you get that big gun again... notice some redundency? There is nothing to achieve, no 'big goal'. Some games such as Diablo have a longer multiplayer lifespan because you can build up your character, but this is cheapened by the fact you keep replaying the exact same game, which is entirely too brief to keep any kind of atmosphere. Additionally, the fact your progress eventually slows down as you approach the limits, ends the game's lifespan on my hard drive.

Repetitive scenery: You play on 100 different servers, all running the same 1-10 'popular' maps from the original game (no one runs usermade maps, or if they do no one joins the server, fearing a download), different players, different lag, same items, same mod, same maps... A time loop.

Lack of enhancements: Anyone remember the weekly downloadable Total Annihilation units? They kept the multiplayer game popular far far longer than a static game could have been. Although I thought weekly was too infrequent :)

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