Freedom to be who you want to be in MMORPGs

I’ve been The Sims Online free now for over a week and I sincerely needed that vacation. I got into the addictive side of the game and almost completely forgot about my thesis. Not playing however has given me thoughts to ponder about and I’m finally getting into the real spirit of analysis.
I tried logging on again last night and felt a pang of nausea hit me. I entered a room to make money and found myself in a TSO drama discussion. After 5 minutes, I just couldn’t take it anymore and logged off.
In the course of my gaming experience I’ve talked to a few players about their freedom to be who they want to be in the game. That they’re free from all of society’s rules and regulations about how to be and what to look like. And I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t know what the hell they’re talking about!
My own gaming experience has been quite different. TSO’ers are extremely emotional. They are very easily offended and my own sarcastic humor has often put me in situations I don’t want to be in. Either I just throw a sentence in the air that is sarcastically complaining about my life and I get a whole lot of “Awww…what’s wrong? Do you wanna talk about it?”. Or I comment on pathetic conversations and I instantly hurt someone’s feelings.
So the whole ‘freedom’ thing about playing has infact been more of a social prison for me. I constantly need to watch what I say and do. Now I don’t know if I entered the game nervous cause I needed to make friends for research purposes or if TSO just isn’t the game for my personality? Or I’m just not a good gamer.

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2 thoughts on “Freedom to be who you want to be in MMORPGs

  1. perhaps the ‘misunderstandings’ are caused by the lack of readable body language…i think sarcasm and humour really suffers when intonation and body language is excluded from your set of communication tools…this is something we have talked about earlier, and something which i believe is the most limiting part of web based ‘real-life’ communication. so maybe it is this that limits you, not the social codes and rules…plus americans are notorious for taking sarcasm the wrong way…something i have experienced first hand…

  2. I agree, Joachim. But I think there’s a general language rule in virtual worlds. When you say something with sarcasm, you generally end with a ‘lol’. This word has become so important. I don’t think people actually are ‘laughing out loud’, but they write it to confirm that they are saying something in a jokingly manner!!!! Maybe we need more variants of LOL

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