Sports and videogames

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#1
Things like sports and videogames create an artificial challenge. It can be very effective in giving a false sense of accomplishment such as when you finally manage to beat the final boss in metroid prime.

When you are too young to deal with the real world artificial challenges such as trying to beat a videogame can be appropriate but many people get stuck with these things not making real-world progress. Videogames can also serve as an important cope for a lot of people who are stuck with a shitty job with no real prospects of improvement.

A case can be made for rejecting gaming completely as a " waste of time" but for a lot of people that is probably not a good idea, videogames is a safe and effective cope that a lot of people simply have to resort to.

So what about sports? there isn't actually any meaningful division between sports and videogames. Many sports such as snooker are not even physically demanding. Furthermore VR games typically involve advanced motion controllers that capture physical movements:

 

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#2
Daniil Kvyat vs Max Verstappen
This is Daniil Kvyat, a Russian F1 driver



He came to Formula One in 2014, on the top of his game, with dreams of becoming a world champion.

He drove for Toro Rosso, a midfield team, with hopes of being promoted to the main, front-running team, Red Bull Racing.

And after some good results, it happened - in 2015 he was announced as a Red Bull driver, giving him a chance to fight for podiums and wins.

In fact, he managed to score 2 podiums and did relatively well.




However, his luck was running out. From the junior categories, a new star was rising, who destroyed anything and anyone in his way

Max Verstappen:



Verstappen was the youngest ever F1 driver, only 17 years old. In the first season, he drove for Toro Rosso, and managed two 4th places in that midfield car.

Next season, only a few races in, Red Bull announced they dropped Kvyat overnight and demoted him to Toro Rosso, and Verstappen was to drive for Red Bull.


Kvyat said:
It will be interesting to see who will be able to work better and harder in terms of bringing in the results
Indeed. And what happened next was the final straw


Max Verstappen, at only 18 years of age, in his debut race for Red Bull, in a car he never drove before, won the 2016 Spanish Grand Prix and became the youngest ever race winner.



And it didn't stop there. Race after race, Max was fighting against cars much faster than his, single-handedly making the sport exciting again.

Who could forget races like 2016 Brazilian Grand Prix, his start in 2017 Chinese Grand Prix, overtake on Rosberg in 2016 British Grand Prix, his dominance in 2017 Mexican Grand Prix

Meanwhile, Kvyat was a broken man. His performances hit a downward spiral, and eventually he was dropped even from Toro Rosso, and left formula 1 for the 2018 season.



However, there was a ray of hope
In 2019 he was hired by Toro Rosso again



Unbelievably, in a crazy rain-affected race in Germany, he managed to score his 3rd career podium!


Who won the race?

Max Verstappen of course


However, Kvyat was ecstatic.



And he revealed to the press he became a father just a day before! He got a daughter with the beautiful Kelly Piquet



Absolutely wonderful. And he got to drive for Toro Rosso - now called Alpha Tauri - in 2020 as well!

His teammate was a Frenchman, Pierre Gasly.



Gasly was promoted to Red Bull the previous year, to drive alongside Verstappen, but was demoted back only after half a season, because Verstappen absolutely crushed him, even lapped him on a few occasions.

However, unlike Kvyat, he was mentally strong, and despite setbacks, drove better than ever, and destroyed Kvyat.

So Kvyat was let go on the end of 2020 season, most likely ending his formula 1 career forever.

How about his love life though? Remember the beautiful Kelly Piquet, with whom he has a child?
At least he can seek some comfort with her.... right?




 

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#3
The difficulty problem with single player games
Single player games are typically optimized for the average player and tend to become too easy even on the highest difficulty once you have played them enough, far cry 2 is an example of this.


So what do people do with games that are now too easy? the answer is sometimes speedrunning, trying to beat the game as quickly as possible.

https://www.speedrun.com/pogostuck/run/z5r2e2ny
 

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#4
The controller problem
One big issue holding especially console games back is lack of precise controls preventing people from having proper control over their in-game actions, instead automation such as aim-assist is used


The dualsense controller has a very accurate gyroskope, unfortunatily it hasn't been utilized particularly well by game developers on PS5, you get far better utilization of it on PC. You can get very good accuracy and speed without using a mouse:

 

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#5
What's required for a game to be truly great?
First off for it to be a proper game it has to have precise controls, the character should be controlled by the player, there should not be any aim-assist. The game should not automatically do actions you could do yourself.

Secondly you need to figure out a good way to challenge the player. Again this should not be controller limited, no aiming with thumbsticks, have analog options for things like driving.
 

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#6
What's required for a game to be truly great?
First off for it to be a proper game it has to have precise controls, the character should be controlled by the player, there should not be any aim-assist. The game should not automatically do actions you could do yourself.

Secondly you need to figure out a good way to challenge the player. Again this should not be controller limited, no aiming with thumbsticks, have analog options for things like driving.
hmmm, than why is mobile strike so much fun ?
it auto shoots and aids aiming.

I like easy to play hard master games like that where experience makes me better.
I cant wait for project feline (game) to release

ATM I play atelier ryza 2 and atelier lulua where its about the game world

btw what do you think would be good features for post game activities ? meaning things to do in the game after you finish the main play line
 

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#7
Why you shouldn't bother with games like Eve online
Playing a game like Eve online is like having a second job except you do not actually get paid in money you can use to pay your actual real bills, instead you get in-game currency you are not allowed to trade for real-world currency (you could try but if they find out you will get banned).

So why have a second unpaid career in virtual space? well i do not really know.

It's very hard for new players to establish themselves since they will start out massively behind in terms of resources


But what about the supposedly amazing wars you may have heard about?

Well if you look at the terrotorial map you see that it really doesn't change that much after major conflicts, it seems like it's very hard to expand and hold terrotory, it's doesn't seem feasable to conquer the game and become emperor for the entire virtual universe.


Recent map:

1637003834035.png


Instead the real power will remain in the hands of game developers and a democratically elected panel (which will be abused by the elected politicians).


The universe itself isn't actually that immersive since you are stuck with a third person perspective and your possible interactions are limited, navigating ships is clunky.
 

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#8
eSports Success Requires Extreme Circumstance

Many dream of being World Champions.
As I was considering the writing for this topic, I happened to come across an article that was already written on this subject. Victoria Rose had made an insightful article about why eSports may be for the privileged:

Is Esports For The Privileged?
Discussing basic barriers of entry into esports.
medium.com

Being an eSports professional is often the dream of many young competitive gamers. I want to highlight in this article why the conditions that lead to being a pro are often of extreme circumstance, and that even people who are willing to put the practice in should reconsider pursuing this path. I have also written about why being a pro player isn’t worth it even if it is achieved:

League of Legends eSports Examined: Why Being an eSports Pro is not Worth It
It isn’t uncommon for our society to promote unrealistic beliefs. According to NPR, “26 percent of U.S. parents whose…
claire-lovely.medium.com

First off, I will say that being an eSports pro definitely requires a level of dedication and practice. What I want to reveal here though is that only under very rare circumstances is it viable for someone to end up on the professional path. The main purpose of the article is to showcase this reality, and show people that this is not a dream that they need to pursue.

I believe that too many young people want to be pro players or streamers, and I do not think it is a good path for many reasons, mainly due to its competitive nature and stress. If people can see that the path is clearly out of reach for most individuals, they may be able to let go of the unnecessary dream easier.


eSports promotions often promote traits like resilience and ambition.
Time

The primary reason that most people cannot become eSports players is simply due to time constraints. Becoming proficient at most eSports titles often requires 10+ hours of practice every day. Even if someone is willing to practice this much, it is generally not possible.

Most people have schooling or a job that they must attend to. This alone takes 8 hours of the day, plus the travel time back and forth. They may likely need to do additional tasks throughout the day like homework or household activities. Far less than 8 hours is usually left for most individuals after these activities are completed.

As a result, most often the people who have the most time to play are those that are allowed to live with their parents and play instead of going to school and working. This situation is simply not available for most. Some may be expected by their parents to find a career and become independent early on. If allowed to stay at home, parents often expect their offspring to work or attend school, especially if they are over the age of 18.

Especially with the rising costs of housing and living, most have to put their focus towards these costs, either by increasing their income through education or working additional hours. Attempting to be an eSports player at the same time often doesn’t fit into this, or even cross most people’s minds.


Most do not have the time do pursue eSports.
Parental Support

Most parents simply will not support the idea of eSports, and the constant stress of arguing with them will make the idea untenable for many. I do not remember the exact videos, but there were some videos that Riot Games released that covered the journeys of some League of Legends pros like Doublelift, and others in China. A common theme among them was that they often had fights with their parents, who may have tried to restrict their play time or asked them to focus on other activities.

The reality is that if most teenagers suddenly started playing 10+ hours of games a day, their parents would rightfully be likely concerned about their massive play time. Competitive gamers that live with their parents would likely have their equipment taken away or playing time restricted if they adopted the same practice regimen of eSports pros.


Many children play in secret to avoid parental oversight.
Economic Standing

A certain degree of affluence is required in order to excel in eSports. Examining most pros, they tend to be from middle-class and upper-class families, but rarely from settings of poverty. Many parents in the world have difficulties supporting themselves, let alone a child or multiple of them.

Most high level players generally come from a setting where their parents are able to cover their cost of living, college, and equipment, and where their child will be able to remain supported with food, housing, and education regardless of what path they take. We for example see that pros generally come from a setting where they lived in a two-story house, had college paid for, and dropped out in an attempt to pursue eSports. Even with the economic aspect handled, many of these pros still had do deal with frustration and stress that built between them and their parents, due to disagreements about the eSports path.

Additionally, a gaming computer can represent a significant cost to families who live in poverty. If a parent chooses to not buy one, then it means that their child would have to wait until they were of working age, and then with having to balance work and school to afford one, the idea of pursuing eSports just isn’t likely. The quality of internet can also be a very important factor, as the wealthier will live in areas with higher quality of access.

Location


A rural town in America.
The quality of internet can vary vastly in different locations, especially outside of larger cities. Internet companies often benefit from legislation that allows them to be monopolies, meaning that many places often have very few or only one option. Connections can be dropped constantly, leading to a poor environment for competitive gaming. In North American regions, the ping disparity to servers from different locations can be very large. Permanently playing at 1/20 or 1/10 of a second behind can prevent a player from developing to their full potential. This situation can only be remedied by moving, which most would see as unviable simply to gain a lower ping.

Furthermore, some nations have criteria that make them much more ideal than others. South Korea for example is a densely populated and small nation with high technological development. Many of the players their are able to practice on 5–10 ping settings, while also having access to high speed internet and LAN centers all around. Genetic factors may play a role, but there are many South Koreans living in the United States as well who generally do not achieve the same level of success. The reason that many of the top eSports pros come from South Korea is simply due to the circumstances that are readily available there. But yet even then the dream of being a pro player is only available to a minuscule amount of players.

Conclusion


The dream isn’t worth believing in.
Many dream of being an eSports professional, far too many I think. While I am against the dream for many reasons, the vast majority of people do not have the circumstances to even achieve it.

When examining the population of pro players, you can see that they are often in their early 20s. They usually require heavy financial support from their parents to be able to even make practicing a possibility. They were likely in a situation where they were able to play while others had to attend work or school.

The point of examining this in-depth is to get people to realize that being an eSports pro is not a dream that people have to hang onto. Even with the dream of being a pro set aside, some will play 10+ hours a day in the pursuit of achieving a certain rank or showing off their status.

I want to let you know that if you have had or had this dream, it is okay to let go of it. It is unrealistic, and if you’ve had troubles arguing with your parents or difficulty balancing a job or focusing on school while thinking about being a pro player, you don’t have to go through this anymore. When I realized that I didn’t have to constantly practice, follow patch notes, or think about the meta anymore, I was freed.

So if you failed at being an eSports player, being a famous streamer, or even achieving a certain rank, it’s okay. Because in the end it’s something that not many of us are meant to be. In addition, I believe that if we succeeded than we would be even worse off. Even as a pro player, a lot of things still come down to circumstance. Who your teammates will be, what changes in the meta will be made, if you have enough savings to sustain the lifestyle in times with no earnings.

Without the idea of being someone famous or known in our minds, it’s easier to examine if these games are truly worth playing. Would people put up with the constant toxicity and frustration they experience if they knew there wasn’t anything to be gained? I don’t think so.

The ability to analyze things is a circumstance that many of us non-famous people have that the pros don’t. We get to take additional time to reflect and think about what is right for us. As a pro player you’re constantly going to be expected to act a certain way by your team, the developers, and fans. I believe that many of them are trapped in something that they don’t know how to get out of, and I have much sympathy for them and would like to offer them assistance one day.

For now, I want us to think about the ideas of chasing validation and status. Game developers know that many of us crave these things, and so they keep pushing them onto us. Once we reject these ideals, we get to be free. You don’t have to be famous or a professional eSports player to live a fulfilled life. Just be you.


You don’t have to be famous. Just be you.
 

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#9
League of Legends eSports Examined: Why Being an eSports Pro is not Worth It
It isn’t uncommon for our society to promote unrealistic beliefs. According to NPR, “26 percent of U.S. parents whose children in high school play sports hope their child will become a professional athlete one day.” Yet in reality, only a few out of hundreds of thousands of people have a…

League Of Legends
11 min read



League of Legends eSports Examined: Why Being an eSports Pro is not Worth It

It isn’t uncommon for our society to promote unrealistic beliefs. According to NPR, “26 percent of U.S. parents whose children in high school play sports hope their child will become a professional athlete one day.” Yet in reality, only a few out of hundreds of thousands of people have a chance of being a professional. Similar unrealistic beliefs have taken hold in the competitive gaming world. While a percentage has not been deduced, many Solo Queue players in League of Legends compete on the Ranked ladder in the hopes of eventually becoming a pro player. While the chances of becoming pro are very unlikely even for Challenger players, a select few will inevitable be chosen for pro play. What many understand is that succeeding in the journey of becoming an eSports professional is likely far more stressful than the alternative lifestyle.

North American players are commonly berated and looked down upon.

The Problem of Relativism
One of the issues we commonly see in other sports is that no matter how much a team practices or performs, they will be deemed as bad teams or face extreme criticism if they lose. This is the problem of the competitive setting as no matter what efforts one puts in, they can be degraded simply because another team outperformed them.

A look at the Worlds events every year shows the extent of this problem. North American players are consistently criticized for their perceived failure to outperform other regions. Reddit is filled with these types of posts, where lamenting about the issues about North American eSports and players seem to be commonplace.

Yet from a practice perspective, North American players play for more than they did in 2012 and practice is much more structured than before. Players may play as much as 12–14 hours a day and be completely focused on the game throughout the day, while in the past they constantly streamed other games or spent more time on other activities outside of practice. However, North American players were a lot better received in the past than they are now, even though their practice and structure increased tremendously. This is because audiences will quickly forget what goes into training for a pro, as competitive activities of these nature simply promotes criticizing the relatively weakest teams while forgetting what goes into the activity.

In essence, it doesn’t matter how much more work pros in North America put in behind the scenes. If they lose at international events than they will receive both criticism and unjust hatred from people who only see the public score results. It works the same in other regions like Korea in China to. No matter what an individual or team’s achievements are, players can quickly lose faith if they lose standing relative to other teams or players.

Reward for Efforts
With the 12–14 hours that pros put into practice, the rewards are extreme disproportional. This can be seen easily by comparing being an eSports player to other career standards.

If you were to mow lawns for 6 hours out in the sun, you would likely be seen as very hardworking and dedicated. Similarly, even staying overtime a few hours after a job could lead to respect from your peers. However, if you were to be an eSports pro and practice 16 hours a day, you could be hated after every game you played. Even most eSports fans would think you were a hard worker in the first two situations, but they would quickly show hate towards you in the latter instance if you lost a game.

Of course things shouldn’t be done purely for admiration, but entering eSports means entering a world that the fans themselves often don’t understand what goes into it. It’s likely extremely mentally taxing to train in isolation for hours with four other people without any recognition, while every move you make in the public eye could be cast with extreme judgement.

Technically, even in this article I am somewhat criticizing eSports players despite the hours they put in. However, I do not assess player’s worth by arbitrary win or loss values or other statistics, and I look at the system as a whole and see that they are victims themselves. I see the hard work and efforts these players put in, but I cannot praise what they do as I believe they’re existing in an environment that promotes toxicity towards themselves. From my point of view the best thing we can do is stop watching so that the demand for other careers becomes more attractive.

Team Liquid’s practice room. Many pros practice in small rooms like these.
The idea of playing in front of cheering audiences fascinates many, but most Solo Queue players probably have not examined how practice actually works. Most of the day is spent in small rooms in front of monitors with the same people day in and day out. Set times are set out for VOD review, exercise, and breaks. Furthermore, you have to play very specific champions and perform similar strategies over and over, often at the coach’s discretion. I cannot imagine that this would be very appealing to most Ranked players who just want to repeatedly queue games at their own rate or play the champions that they want to play. I think that many people could dispel the idea of being pro simply by attempting the practice schedule and lifestyle of eSports teams. There’s a reason that most former pros choose streaming instead of continuing to play in Riot sanctioned leagues, as they can earn more and have more freedom.

Having relations outside eSports it not very viable either while putting in these long hours. Some Korean teams will not even let players have girlfriends. From the logical point of view of the goal of eSports, their policies make sense, but the issue is that being a pro is critically flawed in itself when it means having to give up friends and family in pursuit of success. I do believe that a degree of sacrifice can be important to having a great career, but in most careers there is ample time to see people and the people at work are far more likely to be amiable. In eSports, I’m sure that at times teams can seem like a family themselves, but generally most players have to be viewed as enemies in some form. This isn’t uncommon even from the same team point of view either, with players constantly exposing issues with their teammates. Link in 2015 released an 18-page essay after quitting CLG, highlighting the issues he had with his teammates. Similar exposes occur with relative frequency on Twitter and other platforms. Because everything in eSports comes down to playing skill, players are constantly going to be called into question by teammates, other teams, analysts, and fans. It can create an intense environment of inter and inter-team rivalry and paranoia.

These players would benefit from having connections outside the eSports worlds where things aren’t only about wins or losses, but while this was possible in the past, increased practice time has pushed players away from having the relationships that could actually be the most helpful towards them.

Are the earnings worth it?

Salary
The average LCS salary is estimated to be $410,000. I believe that the minimum salary for academy players is $75,000. This may seem like a lot but it is important to examine the details behind it. LCS players train for at minimum 50 hours a week but I’d say 70 hours a week is more likely. Additionally they may have to spend time streaming or on social media so they are pretty much thinking about League of Legends at all times. The equivalent 40-hour a week job would require a salary of $200,000 a year to match the income per hour. However, those jobs would come with much more free time and reduced stress.
Additionally, the average LCS career is extremely short. scarra and HotshotGG explored the issue in an interview:
scarra: Talk to me a little bit about player longevity … what would you say is the average lifespan of a player right now?
HSGG: I mean, right now, it’s a year to two years. And that’s incredibly disheartening.
This video was made in 2016, and it’s possible that the average career may have decreased or increased during that time, but 1–2 years is extremely short, even shorter than the average NFL career length of 3.3 years.
A salary of $410,000 for a few years could likely still last for a significant amount of time, but the distribution of most of the salaries is likely skewed towards the top players. Furthermore, eSports may be in a bubble now and these higher salaries are likely to be unsustainable into the future. This salary also does not include all the time that was spent training to be pro, which is often far longer than most people attend school for or receive career training for.

Many LCS players end up going back to school for more prospects after finishing their eSports career, the same thing many were doing before they entered in the first place. It shows that the dream many once had ended up being something that they wanted to leave after a few short years. The conclusion from this is the whole eSports path can simply be skipped, as instead of being a lifelong career it is usually just an interruption in people’s journeys.


Toxic Fanbase
The toxicity of various competitive games or regions is usually compared in online discussion, but it isn’t very useful as it doesn’t delve into the main problems. The reason there is toxicity is because by nature a competitive game will promote the kind of tensions that lead to it.

The issue with being an eSports professional is that players must rely on generating attention to earn money. There needs to be enough players to watch for sponsorship interest so that staff can be employed to run a league. The ratio of watchers to players must be extremely high, and even with hundreds of thousands of viewers, leagues are still having difficult times profiting.

The problem is that this massive audience must come from the games itself, competitive games which is toxic by design. Therefore, the same people that the pros rely on to earn money are the same people who will constantly display extreme toxicity towards them. I find both sports and eSports to be somewhat of an abusive relationship between teams and fans. They are both in constant tension with each other and even at times outright hatred but they often remain unaware and keep the cycle going.

Another problem with needing such a high ratio of followers to earn money is the exposure to toxic parasocial relationships. The more ratio of followers it requires to earn money, the more potential harassment, judgment, and erosions of privacy can arise. There are many jobs out there that pay $100,000–200,000 a year where people only need to know their immediate coworkers. However, eSports by nature requires that millions of people be fans in order it to be viable. That means at the equivalent income level of $100,000–200,000 a year someone is going to face thousands of times more exposure to toxicity and harassment, while also dealing with a much more angry audience. The issues enraged fanbases can bring was evident in 2020, when SKT T1 received death threats for temporarily benching Faker. Regardless of how people view the decision by SKT T1, it does not in any way warrant death threats. Although most fans are not involved in death threats, they are just an emergent result from the general harassment in general that is very common. The leagues themselves are often built on the uneven relationships between toxic fans and the players.

Aftermath of Promise’s suicide attempt.

Depression and Suicide
Unfortunately, the conditions in eSports often lead players to extreme depression and even suicide.
The player Promise jumped from a roof in 2014 in a suicide attempt after he exposed how his team manager Noh Dae Chu threatened him and forced him to fix matches. Furthermore, Noh had sold the team’s practice equipment in order to pay his own debts.
Fortunately, Promise survived the 12 story fall and was able to recover to tell the story. However, abuse by management is rife in eSports. Match fixing scandals and refusing to play players are events that are commonplace.

Kenneth Dawnix, also known as k0u, passed away in suicide.
Kenneth Dawnix passed away in 2019 from suicide. While he seemed to be struggling with general feelings of hopelessness, it is likely that pro play exacerbated the issue.

Remilia passed away in 2020, likely from suicide due to the traumas that she experienced from the stresses of pro play and a botched transition surgery.

On her final stream, she also expressed difficulties she faced while streaming, such as facing constant harassment from the audience. I think that the stress from attempting to make a career as a streamer just added on additional problems to an already challenging life that she faced.
eSports players live lives that are far more isolated than the standard Ranked players of League of Legends. They may only be able to interact with their teammates or management on a daily basis. Additionally, they may be far from their home setting, living in a place where arguments and tension are commonplace. They face judgment and criticism from their teammates, managers, other teams, fans, and themselves. Competitive gaming is already a significant contributor to depression, but eSports players must be fully immersed in that lifestyle day in and out with no reprieve from it.

Not all dreams are necessary to have.

Conclusion
It’s unlikely for any of us to become a professional League of Legends player. Even so, we should ask ourselves why we would want it in the first place. The life of pro players is very public and we can clearly see the issues that they face. Many Ranked players have the dream of being a pro player as an ultimate goal but fail to realize that in reality these careers often only last a few years.

Although I didn’t want to be an eSports player directly, I had a desire to be a large League of Legends streamer and someone that would have been known for excelling at the game. I now realize that this need came from my own insecurities and that it isn’t all that important to be known or famous, especially from competitive gaming. I think that when we come from backgrounds of depression or isolation from society, we can tend to think that being something like a famous eSports player would fix all of our issues.

When we realize that we don’t need this dream of fame and fortune of being a pro player, it’s easier to be content with other careers. More importantly, we can realize that there isn’t a true reward for enduring the constant toxicity from competitive games. We can appreciate the friends and family that we have and spend more time with them. For those who matter, we don’t have to dedicate our lives to fame to impress them.


Living the ordinary life can be just fine.
 

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#10
Mental Denial in League of Legends: Constantly Complaining but still Playing
Claire Lovely
Oct 14·7 min read
Many dislike every aspect of League of Legends but continue playing.

Riot recently released their 11.21 patch notes, with one of the major changes being that they will disable /all chat in matchmade queues. This change has been met with opposition from the community. One of the common complaints is that there is more toxicity from teammates than enemies.

It’s a commonly shared viewpoint that the team experience is toxic, but few think quitting is an option.

What these players should realize if that in a game where playing with other players becomes a net negative, than it makes little sense to continue playing with them in the first place. These players are indeed rightful to question why Riot Games would remove /all chat in the first place, as it seems counterpoint to the idea of multiplayer interaction. However, the problem is that naturally in the setting of the competitive game, toxicity could arise regardless of whatever chat settings are in place. Players must examine why their teammates or enemies would be toxic to begin with and why it’s such a common problem among all types of players all around the world. The issue is that when you place humans in an environment where they fight for artificial ranks, that it’s guaranteed to bring out some of the highest levels of toxicity possible.

Furthermore, players constantly complain about the latest updates. The latest preseason video is the most disliked I have seen in a while, it may be the video with the highest dislike ratio but I’m not completely sure of that.

I decided not to like or dislike it as I don’t play anymore, but the changes seem pretty drastic.

Anyhow, while I played the game, I saw a lot of complaining about updates but I believed that players should simply adapt. After I left, I now understand that the constant changes that Riot Games did, like new champion releases and major item changes are not compatible with creating a balanced game. Basically, marketing hype is incompatible with creating a long term sustainable eSport.

Therefore, from the perspective of a player, I see that there are many reasons for their complaints in the past now. However, even in my old mindset while playing I probably would have believed that many of the recent changes are far too drastic. I don’t want to go too deep into game balance here but Season 11 was too much of a change for most, even for those who already took issues with Riot Game’s design philosophies, and Riot Games looks to be pushing even further into sweeping changes for Season 12.

The issue is that many players are locked in a toxic relationship with the game where they are frustrated with these changes but continue to play anyways. Even worse, some spend even more time debating various number changes, champion designs, healing and shielding values, and more intricacies more than they even play the game. While at times mathematical and strategical analysis can get somewhat interesting, in the end this constant debate and complaining does little but frustrate players even more with the state of the game.

There are of course times when Riot listens to the community, but more often then not they’re going to focus on building marketing hype around the latest sweeping changes rather than creating a truly balanced game.

Sentiment around League of Legends is declining, yet many will continue to play.

Complaints also bleed over to the eSports sections of things as well.

Criticism of the North American region is common.

It is common for players and viewers to be commonly critical of the North American region due to what they perceive to be low quality of gameplay. Although I do not believe that eSports are a good thing anymore, it seems silly and misguided to call players performance poor when pro players are doing things at a level that most of us could not do. For all that we know, North America could have been improving in quality since the inception of League of Legends, but relatively they look worse to other regions. The issue in itself is that no matter how high quality the level of play is, relativism will always breed toxicity around eSports. To me, the whole system in general just seems to lead to pointless hatred of players and regions, and a lot of frustration for viewers all around who constantly find complaints with the eSport itself, especially when they attach themselves heavily to teams or regions.

Analysts and players commonly shame North American players for under-performing and failing to qualify for Worlds. But in the end why does it really matter? These players aren’t any less or more as people for it, and attaching so much happiness to their outcome makes little sense.
eSports serves as just another aspect for people to complain about rather than uniting them.

Conclusion
In conclusion, I think that the general attitude of complaining about League of Legends while continuing to play can be a very dangerous thing because it is turning self-loathing into a type of badge of honor, where constantly it seems that people would rather promote how worse that certain things have gotten rather than what they enjoy out of the game, making people continue to play out of addiction or spite when it is unhealthy for them.

Consider the general attitudes that we see so prevalent in League of Legends:

“I get more toxicity from my own teammates than the enemy team.”

“I’m in North America and our region has the worst eSports teams.”

“Things were best in Season _ (insert prior year) and now is the worst.”

“My champion doesn’t get skins while Lux has a new one.”

“At least in (insert time/setting) it wasn’t as bad as (insert other time/setting)”

Many of these attitudes are built on self-deprecation and degradation of the players the people play with, the pro players they watch, the game they play and the updates the developers make. It’s a never ending contest of who experiences the worst issues or of who dislikes the game the most while still playing it. In the end, if all these things bring so much frustration then why not just do without them? The ability to quit doesn’t seem to come up often, like it is forbidden territory or too much of a leap to make although it is the most logical thing to do in these scenarios.
The most passionate players often dislike the game the most.

I know many people who have League of Legends as their main activity who constantly complain about many of the previously highlighted aspects, almost on a daily basis at times, or even after every game they play in high Diamond Solo Queue. In fact, it seems like the deeper people get into it, the more they dislike it.

Recognizing abusive settings can be difficult when people are in them, and as shown in abusive relationships, they can be difficult to leave behind. League of Legends is a abusive relationship for many. They don’t like the moments that they’re playing it, they complain about it after playing, and they’re manipulated psychologically by the developers to keep playing.

Although I knew that game addiction was a real issue, I began to realize how insidious the actual thing could be as I stayed off League of Legends for longer. There are potentially millions of players with very similar experiences of toxicity, but divided from each other and humanity because these similar experiences are tearing them apart. I know many friends who still play League of Legends and I’ve seen how irrationally angry they can become when playing the game or talking about the game, yet when they do other activities they seem far calmer and less stressed. The issue is once they get deep into playing, it becomes harder to live without that competitive pull, meaning they’re entrenched into something that they don’t get enjoyment out of, yet they still crave and long for it.

Players can easily find others to join them in complaint or debates around the game mechanics. Some people make their living specifically on pointing out game flaws. They can attract big viewings and followings, pointing out for example if Riot Games did something else the game would be better. While I can’t fault anyone for seeing an opportunity to make income, I believe the most responsible thing as a former player is telling people the truth about what the best course of action is.

Instead of wallowing in frustration, players should simply quit the game. It is rare to see this viewpoint anywhere, but it is one that players should see is a real option. Of course, in reality quitting can be difficult and a long process, but the point is the objective itself is simple, rather than the quagmire of constantly debating and thinking of what the game itself should be. Players should know that quitting is an option so they can begin to make small steps towards it today, as it is a real clear goal that they can move towards. Once players know they can quit, they can then plan how they’ll taper through withdrawals and get back to the other things that they wanted to do.

Do not continue to do things that do not bring you enjoyment! Most players do not need League of Legends to earn a living and in fact it most often gets in the way of that. Why do something voluntarily that brings so much issues with it?

Leaving it behind isn’t always easy, but at some point it becomes necessary.
 

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#12
The only reliable way to prevent cheating is to hold local tournaments where you make sure everyone has the same system and that no cheating is going on. Online competitions will always be very prone to cheating.

In the past many games could only be played at the highest level by humans (making AI less viable) but recently with the advancement in AI it's just a question of time before some big game get AI developed for it that is far superior to any Human.
 

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#13
What drives people to play videogames
The main driving factor is of course the dopamine kick people often get out of playing some engaging game. Games are designed to trick the reward system of your brain into thinking you are making progress in your life when in reality you are not actually gaining much if anything from it. Instead of providing real benefits for your real life games very heavily depend on artificial benefits and increasingly games are designed to keep the people playing them hooked as much as possible.

There are of course many other potential benefits from videogames for the players but as we will find out these generally do not hold up very well.

0. It trains your brain (potential cognitive gains from some game
1. Acting out in a game is much safer than acting out in the real world, thus videogames can serve as a valuable safety valve for you where you can get an outlet for your impulses in a safe manner.
2. you can potentially make 'friends' from gaming
3. you can potentially gain money/status from gaming
4. you can use videogames to learn things (such as simulating warfare between many parties, testing out economic systems, etc)

The obvious issue with 1 is that gaming can also lead to people not taking action IRL when doing so is very beneficial, instead you spend hours making 'progress' some game.

The obvious issue with 2 is that often people who you encounter in videogames are not people you actually want to spend time on, instead you will largely encounter very toxic people and a lot of losers (often both).

The obvious issue with 3 is that if you look at the potential money people make relative to the time invested the average salary is very low even if you include the value of the status gained for some people (equivalent cost of advertising).

If you actually get good at a game rather than getting liked people will resent you and make up reasons for why you are doing better. People will start hoping you will fain since you being successful will come at the expense of others not being as successful as you are (knowing down everyone else below you in any ranking).

The obvious issue with 4 is that most games are not actually accurate simulators or even close, you might learn some stuff in other games but you would have likely learned far more useful info doing something else. Accuracy is generally not something videogame makers focus on. Shooting weapons in some videogame will be very different from shooting real weapons in the real world. For this reason to hold the game has to be specifically made that purpose and these games generally would not be very fun.
 

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#14
Does videogames actually make the brain better?
You want to improve your mental abilities in general instead of just gaining skills specific to one task. Sure you improve at the game you are playing but what about other games?

Research does suggest that the improvement is general and not specific to the game.

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01226/full

If it is the case that games improve the brain then maybe that's why gaming can be very fun, maybe it's your reward for giving your brain some badly needed workout similar to how it can feel good to do physical exercise since that makes your muscles stronger.

It's very likely that in order to actually get a benefit from this the game has to actually challenge you and popular videogames will very often not actually do that.
 

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#15
Ranked competitive gaming
One issue with many online games is that new players will be completely dominated while old players has a massive advantage, this is especially true if you can get advantage of other players by getting stuff not available to all players by default (such as a better sword).

But even if the players have access to the same things for every match (as common with serious competetive games) there is still the fact that some players are much better than others. People will progress in the game by gaining actual skills instead of unlocking items/abilities artificially.

By using some ranking system you will be able to match people against strong opponents, this should ideally be quick so if you are skilled you will quickly meet stronger opponents to the point where you get your ass kicked and this will keep people engaged.

Of course the more rating points you gain the harder it will be for you to keep that and this will incentivize some people not to play with their main account since then they would very likely lose rating points. Because of that some developers penalizes players for inactivity to prevent them from just sitting on their high rating not playing any games, if you just deduct points from people for not playing then they could still just play the minimum needed to keep their rating (such as exactly once every friday). A better way is to deduct points from all players with high rating relative to players of low rating so people with high rating has to consistently play to win points from people of low rating, you do not actually have to deduct point, you can just add inflation to the system.
 

Claire_Lovely

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#16
I used to think a lot about the ideal Ranked systems, but I realized that it's all unnecessary in the first place since we can just stop playing Ranked games.
 

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#17
How to game in moderation
The main thing you have to do is to avoid titles that require time a lot of time, especially perpetual online games where you maintain a career there.

You also need to shift your focus towards accomplishing things in the real-world, set up goals for yourself and try to reach them. Make a plan and then try to follow it. You might want to just avoid titles made after 2010 or something, maybe stick to using emulators and nothing modern.
 

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#18
Games for senator selection
One way to evaluate the mental abilities of people is to use strategy games. Unfortunately with strategy games a very big factor is how much time you have invested/spent/wasted on it so in order to actually test mental abilities you should give the parties equal time to prepare (which can be close to zero) which requires inventing some new game and not having it leak to some contestant, you could also rig the competition by letting your favorite prepare a lot more.

With the typical strategy games people play however the most intelligent players will often lose due to lack of experience.

Of course becoming the world champion of some popular strategy game still requires a lot in terms of intelligence but it also require investing a lot of time into it making that method of intelligence compasison very costly in terms of time (requirering people to devote their lives just to one game for a chance of winning).
 

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#19
Kaizo mario world 3 review
As with Kaizo mario games in general you often need very precise inputs or you will die. What makes kaizo 3 challanging is that there is only a single checkpoint per level so unless you cheat by using save-states playing it will be very tedius and frustrating for most people.

The bossfights except the final bowser fights are all relatively easy (compared to the rest of the game) you should not need any savestates for these. The following boss-fight does look very hard but since it's the same every time you play it you can learn exactly what to do and then eventually you will manage to get 3 hits


There isn't much random elements in Kaizo 3, almost everything is exactly the same for each play and this makes it possible for you to learn the exact input needed for all moments of a level and after that beating levels without savestates will be very much possible. Kaizo mario games in general are extremely punishing for new players while experienced players can look a lot more talanted than they really are, this is especially the case due to the hidden block many kaizo games employ.
kaizo block.png


What initially brought me to kaizo mario 3 was the very final bowser fight but i did discover that the game was actually very fun to play when you just used a few savestates. Usually when i try some game i quickly lose interest and stop playing, i was thinking that maybe i was getting too old to enjoy videogames. Now i was finally able to enjoy playing a new videogames and it remained fun even after spending many hours on it. When i finally arrived at the bowser fight i discovered that it was (for better or worse) very different from the rest of the game.


The final bowser fight is very heavy on Randomnless, each fight will be different, this makes the bowser fights more about pure skills and less about training. You do get 2 powerups that will be very much needed for all people except dode.

Faithful to the original game mechanics
While many popular romhacks rely heavily on custom game mechanisms developed for the game kaizo 3 instead relies very heavily on the vanilla game mechanics. For example you will become big when getting a checkpoint, this means that you will typically get a small advantage for at the first attempt, many romhacks have removed that because they want the same difficulty for each attempt (instead of making the first attempt after reaching the checkpoint easier).

All music tracks are also from the orginal super mario world game.

10 / 10
 

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#20
About speedrunning
Speedrunning at a high level is extremely tedious, you end up having to run the same game over and over again without knowing if you will even make any real progress. In-addition even if you make some record people might just forget about you completely.

I do not see the fun in playing the same game over and over again. Do the people actually enjoy that or do they force themselves to do it in an attempt to get fame? is it just to get a sense of purpose in life?

Cosmo/narcissa right was a prominent speedrunner for a while but what good did that do to him/her? he/she wasn't able to get any stable income from it and had to keep begging people for money as her finances were drained over time when she hit severe issues with her speed-running and struggled with her transition to female. She ended up having to just get a job.

What tends to happen with videogame is that early on there is a lot of room for improvement when it comes to speedrunning but as people learn how to run the game well making improvements become increasingly difficult, it ends up involving more and more difficult tricks. The reason why records didn't stagnate more was that speedrunning increased a lot in popularity which resulted in many more people trying.
 

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#21
About Women's sports
One current hot-topic culture war issue is whether or not trans females should be allowed in female sports. Depending on the sport and what rules there are for trans females you may or may not be able to quality for the female category and maintain an advantage over cis females.

HRT will of course make you weaker and diminish your performance in physical sports

bjsm.bmj.com/content/early/2020/11/06/bjsports-2020-102329.full?ijkey=yjlCzZVZFRDZzHz&keytype=ref

The 15–31% athletic advantage that transwomen displayed over their female counterparts prior to starting gender affirming hormones declined with feminising therapy. However, transwomen still had a 9% faster mean run speed after the 1 year period of testosterone suppression that is recommended by World Athletics for inclusion in women’s events.​
https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/55/11/577.full?ijkey=yjlCzZVZFRDZzHz&keytype=ref

Not a single trans female were able to win a medal in the 2020 olympics, Laurel Hubbard were the only one to even quality but 2 of 3 judges disapproved of her 125 Kg lift and after failing her final attempt she was out of the tournament.

While sports if often painted as a fair and equal playing field the reality is very different from that in the more athletic competitions, it's about cheating as and getting away with it.

https://www.sportscasting.com/how-exactly-did-lance-armstrong-cheat/

So while attempts are made to catch cheaters many are never found out and by getting away with that you can get a huge advantage, this is how you actually win and it's arguably a far greater factor then whether or not you can get an advantage via gender-transition.

I personally do not think athletic sports like it exists today should even be a thing. It promotes does not promote health, it does not promote beauty. You would for example benefit from removing any body-part that does not benefit you in said sport (such as breasts if you are female) and if nobody is willing to do that females with naturally small breasts should be at an advantage in most athletic competitions.

Sports based on precision or intellectual ability (such as snooker) are less problematic but it's arguably still not the best usage of your time to focus heavily on that, in order to compete on a high level you will need to invest a huge amount of time into it's unlikely that will actually pay off.

It would be great if trans females killed women's sports (like many conservatives have predicted) but sadly that is very unlikely to actually happen, instead they will just change the rules if trans females start doing too well by banning them completely or making it harder for them to compete (such as adjusting the weight-class system in the case of weightlifting).

mortijames said:
They're all fucking doping. Usai Bolt beat 15 guys ranked below him, who were all given suspensions at some point. He's doping, and so is everyone else in athletetics and pro sports. That has the unintended consequence of making it fair because they'll all enhansed.
And what makes you think this is something we should promote as a society?

Why should we even allow these competitions in the first place?

It clearly pushes people into using performance enhancing drugs.

Forcing intersex-females to take anti-androgens
It was believed that high T would provide an andvantage and this ended up implicating intersex females. Some intersex females are now fighting back against this:


news24.com/sport/othersport/athletics/caster-semenya-files-lawsuit-in-european-court-this-fight-is-not-just-about-me-20210225

If they actually have an advantage that would just be one of many natural advantages some people can have. Where do we draw the line?
 

Claire_Lovely

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#22
Why It’s Not the Time for Me to Be Against Competitive Gaming

In 2021 when I quit League of Legends, I was actively posting in the stopgaming community on Reddit. This community was founded by Cameron Dare, who does a lot of good work in helping others with their addictions. I didn’t have an issue with all games, but was against competitive ones. I wrote many articles on the myriad of issues they presented.

https://medium.com/@claire-lovely/g...-tier-system-of-league-of-legends-48890c3136c
https://medium.com/@claire-lovely/m...ly-complaining-but-still-playing-6554a52b8afa
https://medium.com/@claire-lovely/l...g-an-esports-pro-is-not-worth-it-7f7408e69b60

While I still believe most things I wrote previously were true about the negatives of competitive gaming were true, I now believe it is too early now to call for their abolishment.

The oncoming of the war in Ukraine made me realize how lost the world was. And I realized that if more people had been on games, these types of things probably wouldn’t have happened. Compared to death and destruction on such a vast scale, people being addicted to games just seemed to be a minor issue. Of course we can care about both larger and smaller issues, but I realized competitive gaming is in fact helping society overall, especially due to the fact that it replaces many extremely negative activities.

There are many key issues that competitive gaming have helped to reduce in the world.

Unwanted Children
The existence of unwanted children causes some of the largest problems out there. The great thing is that the childfree lifestyle is spreading quick, especially among teenagers and young adults. However, there is still some resistance to this lifestyle.

The time commitment and cultures that competitive gaming creates means that players will be far less likely to have children. Even if they desire to do so, years will usually pass without them meeting anyone to have children with.

It is not absolutely ideal for people to be spending so much time in games when their are many monetary issues to resolve for the newer generations. However, bringing children into economic hardship is a far worse alternative.

Competitive games are a very effective form of birth control on a wide scale, in a way even better then the most persuasive childfree contents available. The activity can easily captivate people, and once they are involved they meet friends who reinforce the lifestyle of remaining childless.

The lifestyle of gaming can be more appealing than having children.

Alcohol / Drugs
It is unfortunately to common for many to be involved in a lifestyle of drugs and alcohol. Gaming can be a very effective way to keep people off of these things.

I believe that it is possible to both abstain from competitive gaming and drugs and alcohol. However, the reality is that the only alternatives that some see to gaming is to do drugs and alcohol.

In areas like college campuses this can especially be true. Going out is usually associated with drinking, doing drugs, or partying.
Many who are restless are best off if they have competitive games available to constantly occupy them. While it’s better to just sleep at night, gaming can server as a way to take people away from a nightlife that is both dangerous and unhealthy.

Sexual assault, violence, and brain damage go hand in hand with alcohol.

Crime
Competitive gaming at large can be an effective deterrent to crime. In impoverished areas, without anything to occupy their attention, individuals can quickly turn to gangs for a sense of family and to crime to earn a living. Competitive games can offer an endless sense of adventure that can alleviate this issue.

Individuals can attempt to best others online in a non-violent environment, replacing potentially dangerous disputes with internet scuffling. It also lets groups compete against various rival groups for influence, without the actual death or trauma associated with it.

Furthermore, competitive gaming is able to appeal to most aspects of those who would otherwise commit crimes. For instance, instead of manipulating others for financial gain, individuals who seek to exploit others may gain this satisfaction by outplaying other players through cunningness. Those who have violent tendencies can act out shooting or stabbing in these player versus player realms, and those with psychological issues can rant in online lobbies about their misgivings.

In this time, there are many impoverished areas in America that have similar death tolls to warzones. Similarly to how sports activities and youth groups can keep those from being involved in illicit activity, competitive gaming can offer this but on an even greater level.

We need people inside on games, and not outside hurting each other.

Sports
Competitive gaming can be effective at replacing sports as a form of competition. Sports such as football and cheerleading are extremely dangerous and can be even more so than doing drugs.

More evidence is coming out that many sports can cause long term brain damage. By playing competitive games instead, players can stay free of the various injuries that constantly plague sports players.

Sports also have the problem of being extremely expensive. Lots of equipment has to be bought, stadiums that cost millions of dollars must be built, and lots of space and organization is needed for practice and events. As more switch from sports to eSports, a lot of these costs can be significantly reduced.

Sports can also encourage toxic behavior in parents, where parents often embarrass their child by yelling at the referees or coaches or getting into altercations. With eSports, the playing generation is likely to be much more involved in the games than their parents, giving them much more agency over deciding the path that they want to choose.


Watching Television
Passively watching television is something that occupies way too much of people’s time. I remember how oftentimes, the main thing that me and my friends’ parents did after work was watch television. To this day this is probably still what is occurring.

Watching shows on television is an activity that significantly dulls the mind because it doesn’t require the viewer to engage in any way, they simply passively view what is being presented. Additionally, shows and news are commonly made to be distressful in order to retain the viewer’s attention, having negative psychological effects.

Competitive gaming lets people take the hours they put into television and instead devote it to an activity where they are actively engaging their minds. They have to constantly be thinking and communicating with others. While watching television, there is little chance for no connections to be made. Through the online world, many international opportunities of friendship open up.

Passively watching television is not stimulating enough for the mind.

Religion
Christianity has long had a strong control over America. The system of churches and youth groups has kept both children and adults indoctrinated into a false system.

With the advent of competitive gaming, people no longer need to look to religion to have a sense of purpose or belonging. Ahead of them, they have an endless battlefield with constant new things to discover or achieve.

Fighting together with a group in the aim of achieving victory in a ladder of millions can give people a real and tangible purpose. With these types of experiences available, it is less and less likely that many would want to return to the boring church experience.

eSports can free the youth from the church system.

My Future Plans
While I believe that competitive gaming may be helpful at alleviating many issues on a societal level, I still believe that many individuals could benefit from quitting.

Those that face depression or monetary issues from addiction and who do see better activities may benefit immensely from pursuing their true purpose.

As a result, I may still work on my site for Quitting League of Legends. However, as of now this is not a top priority. I believe that in time it will be important to address it more deeply, but for now there are many larger issues that need solving and competitive gaming is helpful in eliminating many of these.

I also realize that competitive gaming is too large of a community and I do have to be involved in it in some way in order to create the necessary changes the world needs.

Cryptocurrency
I realized that competitive gaming can be a strong realm to promote cryptocurrency usage. I would like to create tournaments that utilize cryptocurrency for entry and payout, so that participants can avoid unnecessary KYC or other regulations.
I would also like to encourage eSports streamers to adopt cryptocurrency for donations, and to avoid the high fees imposed by cryptocurrency or taxes. Some streamers are taxed up to 40% in some countries and the reality is that this number should be 0.

eSports is a prime ground to continue the cryptocurrency revolution.

Free Speech
Competitive gaming represents an area where opinions are unfiltered and people can be more willing to say what they truly believe. There are problems with toxicity that arises from extreme competitiveness, causing people to act in ways they normally wouldn’t.
However, competitive game communities can be an area to promote uncensored opinions in going forward. These communities I believe are more likely to adopt forums or platforms where free speech remains untrammeled.

United, games can be a powerful force.

Ending War
Unfortunately, conscription is still used my many countries, pushed by unnecessary fear of other nations. These types of policies are sexist against males, and males are expected to be conscripted or die in wars for governments that are restricting their rights.
Since competitive gaming is a primarily male activity, it can be something that takes away the drive to fear others and go to war in the male population.

I plan to eventually create a site that calls for citizens in South Korea to protest conscription, and I hope to gain the support of Korean eSports pros and their fans in ending this unjust system.

Around the world, it is just commonly accepted that millions of males should die in wars. People to not expect women to fight in wars, rightfully so, but then neither should men to. If males reject joining the war and seek games instead, they can quickly reduce the power of the military industrial complex around the globe.

eSports pros in South Korea would rather keep playing games, not join the military.
 
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