The title pretty much explains the main topic of this post. There is too much toxicity on the forums. Almost every thread either has one negative person, or a multitude of negative players engaging in an uncivil discussion, and the uncivil discussions that occur on the forums make for an unhealthy gaming environment. These conversations make their way into the main aspect of the game (the part you… play), and it only makes things worse.
I understand that some players tend to get exasperated by certain things that are implemented by the game developers, and certain things that don’t get implemented, and it just feels like everyone is being “ignored”, but it is asinine to make invalid speculations that are based entirely on your unpleasant experiences and your emotions just because you are displeased with a decision or choice of action made by PG. Before I proceed, I want to state that the point of this thread is not to speak up on the apparent contempt that some players have for PG (“contempt” is obviously the word, so don’t try to disprove that), but to speak up on the erratically-toxic environment that has formed, so please do not twist my words up, as I am speaking generally, and not just on behalf of Pocket Gems. This includes the player-to-player conversations as well — but allow me to delve deeper into the PG-related toxicity before I discuss anything on the vitriolic player-to-player conversations.
There seems to be a wave of discontent with every release, every addition, and every change. This is okay, because there are two ways to feel about something: you can either be in favor of it, or you can oppose it. The thing is that players seem to oppose all of these releases, additions, and changes by expressing how they feel in a particularly toxic manner. There are positive ways to express disapproval of something, but players always seem to take the opposite route, and discussion threads get filled with a bunch of derisive replies, when everyone could protest positively. You don’t ever get anything out of being negative. If something displeases you, it is best to go do something you enjoy, cool off, come back, and then opine on the situation. It is not advisable, nor ethical, to jump down PG’s throat as if they aren’t humans behind screens just like the rest of us. Keep in mind that as players, we are all bound to the Code of Conduct (CoC). If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything. PG is a company made up of humans, so they should be treated like humans.
Let’s discuss the speculations that are incessantly thrown around the forums, shall we? These demeaning speculations are extremely annoying to read. Players make speculations based off of any unpleasantries they have experienced, and it’s all very nonsensical. There are speculations about greed (which are not verified, and have even been disproven in this post made by Galileo), PG neglecting their player base and basically not caring for us (which has also been disproven somewhere, but I can’t find it), and a bunch of other fatuous speculations. I will say one thing: speculating on the character and the intent of PG without knowing what goes on inside each individual’s head, nor having any insight on what goes on during their meetings, is one of the most premature things I have seen with this community. You can’t just assume something is how it appears to be because you are displeased with almost everything that they release, add, or change. All of the speculations, and all of these senseless notions, have got to go. Before anyone calls me a “defender of PG”, even though that is not the intent of this post (as stated previously), I am going to say that I would rather be a defender than stand by and watch a bunch of people jump all over a team of humans who make honest mistakes and often-unpleasant choices (can’t please everyone), and clearly has a sense of admiration and respect for the game and the players inside of it, even if that does not seem to be very apparent to the player base. I do not agree with everything they do myself, but I never belittle their actions or say things that could make them feel bad as a company or as people.
There are two types of “player-to-player toxicity” that I am going to discuss here. The first will be going over all of the arguments that occur here, and the second will be going over how newer players are introduced to the game. Essentially, I’m breaking this part up into two sections.
We all have our quarreling moments, and we all have certain feelings and emotions towards something that another person says, be it a stranger or someone you personally know and are very close with. The catalyst for these quarrels is often something trivial that two (or more) players had initially disagreed with. Things can spiral out of control between players due to these minor disagreements. While we all have feelings, and sometimes, our feelings manage to get the best of us, it is uncool and unethical to attack the player’s character and use biting words that could bring them down and exacerbate the situation. The optimal thing to do would be to drop it and leave the discussion, but if you absolutely must proceed, it would be best to take it to a private chat so that any forum readers that are reading through the thread at the time of the argument don’t have to read all of the toxic remarks and be driven away from the thread, or the forums as a whole. I would advise anyone who gets into a heated argument, or disagrees with something a player has said, to think before they opine on what that player has said, and consider whether or not what you are about to say can be damaging to the player in any way.
That brings me to the next “section” of this part of my post: the way new players are introduced to the game. Every time a new player comes onto the forums (which is very rare, might I add), they are welcomed with a bunch of negativity and statements on why they should just uninstall the game and move on. They never receive a warm welcome. Players always say, to them and older players that enjoy the game (such as myself) that PG’s choices of action are what drives players away, while I think that for the players who are actually passionate about the game, the toxic environment is what will drive those particular players away. A new player should feel welcomed by those who have played for a relatively long time, not (potentially) driven away by those same players because they don’t like how things in the game play out. I think that if a player, old or new, admires the game, or any aspect of it, they should be allowed to express those positive feelings for the game without being dismissed by those of greater disapproval. Also, if a player is new and is enjoying the game, don’t rain on their parade and say “oh, you shouldn’t get too attached to this game because xxx”. Let them enjoy the game. This game’s community needs to grow, and by dismissing a player who enjoys this game, you are damaging the current state of the game. People always say “this game is dying”, but there are quite a few players who are passionate about this game, so I personally don’t see it taking that route, although it will if players continue to impose their negative feelings for the game on those who feel positive about it.
That concludes this long and extensive topic. I felt this was a necessary topic to make because everyone is always lashing out at PG and at the player base. Some arguments are for a reasonable cause, but it is never morally right to attack the character of PG or the player you are arguing with. There is an extreme dearth of civil conversations on the forums, and I really hate to think of the forums as “the place where arguments break out”, but that is inevitably the most accurate description of the forums, and it is what almost everyone thinks of the forums, whether they log in frequently or not. Things have to lighten up around here at some point.