Best/Worst Gaming Communities
All this time under self-quarantine has left many of us longing for a sense of togetherness. We just want to be a part of a community again. Any community. Well, almost any community.
For gamers, becoming a part of a tribe or a clan or a gaming community is never far out of reach. All it takes is a fiery passion for a game and enough time to get halfway decent playing it. But while the former can happen overnight, mastery of a title can take weeks, months or even never to happen.
With such a process in place, you must choose your community wisely. How welcoming or unwelcoming they are can make a difference in your gaming life. Today, we invite you to have a look at some of the friendliest communities out there, along with some of the most notoriously nasty. Choose your fate. You can’t say you haven’t been warned...
Best Gaming Communities
It’s a good thing that Rocket League falls on the sunny side of this list, because I love playing the game and also suck brutally at it. Whether it’s botching a wide open net on a picture perfect cross from my teammate, or playing something only remotely resembling defense, I’ve screwed up royally from every position on the field. But unlike other games, I always find myself on the receiving end of constructive criticism and tips to better my performance. They’re delivered loudly and rapidly, but they’re there.
Left for Dead
When you create the perfect team-based shooter, I suppose you also produce the best teammates. Left for Dead has been around forever, but people are still playing it en masse. Why? Zombie shooting gets old even for the most hardcore Romero lovers, but it’s the comfort knowing that you’ll get support from total strangers in the heat of battle that keeps this game alive and thriving. You may even hear the occasional “sorry” or “nice kill” while playing. Had to check my headphones for noise-altering debris the first time that came through on the coms.
World of Warcraft
Yes, it’s still around. And yes, it’s community is still one of the best. The granddaddy of all MMOs had every chance in the world to turn evil, but somehow never went that way. Instead you had WOW-themed weddings, moving in-game tributes to beloved players who were lost IRL, and of course, LEROY…..JENKINS!!!! Honestly, a game that has doled out that much joy over such an extended period of time deserves your gaming resources and energy.
Ah, Stardew Valley. Just hearing the name puts one at ease, It’s a game that’s designed to be relaxing. So much so that you’ll hardly notice losing your job because you sunk 1,500 hours into your digital farm and social life. But the unsung hero of Stardew is the community. They have found myriad ways to make a great game even more enjoyable. So much love and attention and positivity on Reddit (!) that you feel like a part of a supportive family every time you need an important question answered. That would make them different from my family, of course. But a family nonetheless.
Worst Gaming Communities
League of Legends
As a recent Reddit commenter succinctly put it, “LoL is OK. I’ve only been asked to kill myself twice while playing.” And we’re sure it was in the nicest tone possible. But honestly, could there be any more toxic group of gamers this side of DOTA II. Matters aren’t helped by the ridiculously steep learning curve that needs flattening in those same hectic moments where you’re asked to make key team-threatening decisions in the heat of battle.
Many have called Counter-Strike the greatest pure shooter ever made. That’s a spirited debate worth having, but there’s no denying the pure, unfiltered abuse you’re going to take the first dozen or so times you fail to cover a teammate’s flank. On the bright side, you can learn to swear in Russian from some of the world’s finest 13 year old linguists.
Super Smash Bros.
For a game filled with such goofy, happy and colorful sprites, this game inspires some of the worst behavior ever banned by Twitch. Seriously, hop online and watch some of these half-wits get heated over a match and you’ll wonder how nobody’s ever died at a tournament. If Kirby and Link only knew how their likenesses were being used to stoke such anger.
The beautiful game. The world’s sport. The most irritating community in the universe. The interesting thing about FIFA players is that while they do spend a good amount of time taunting each other with all kinds of nastiness, they’re the only community that turns their anger outward. Specifically towards the maker of the game, the monolithic EA. Honestly, FIFA players spend so much time complaining about this player being OP or that defensive formation having AI that’s total trash, it’s a wonder they have time to play at all. Must be salty over all the cash they’ve dropped in Ultimate Team...
This one is so tricky that it literally merits its own category. Everybody loves building stuff. And the scope and size of what you can build in Minecraft is only enhanced when you’re part of a positive, supportive community of like-minded individuals. That’s what makes Minecraft great. But then you have the other community. The full grown adults who like to heap shame on young kids. The moderators drunk on their own power. It’s the James McAvoy of gaming communities. It’s a lo-res game about creating things, people - why do we have to make it weird?
Got a suggestion for this list? A gaming community story you’ve been dying to share? Drop it in the comments below and join the Subnation community. We’re happy to have you!