Sometimes in life, no matter how hard we try to push and advocate for inclusion, equality and fairness, there's always going to be a few bumps in the road; that's just life. There's always going to be a group of people who either don't hold these values or simply want to troll to get a reaction. Both of these groups of people are problematic in an online community because they serve as a constant reminder to those in the minority (in this case, women) that they aren't welcome.
When you’ve invested lots of time and money into building the perfect game for your target audience, it’s not easy to sit back and watch others tinker with your game and make it their own. Nevertheless, modding communities have proven time and again that players can be every bit as creative as the developer. And when you put aside the irky feeling of watching someone meddle with your game, modding actually leads to a number of benefits that greatly outweigh the feeling of irk that you may initially experience.
Spam and trolls are an unfortunate reality for almost any community forum, but the world of competitive gaming seems to have more than its fair share. In fact, some gaming communities have developed such a huge reputation for toxic behavior that it has become a defining characteristic of their game.
The big question is: how do you stop trolls and spammers from harming your community and detracting from the overall reputation of your game?
All online gaming communities share several things in common. Most notably, they’re virtual hangouts where people go to share interests and get more enjoyment out of the games they love.
Nonetheless, there’s often a disconnect between developers and their target audiences. This is often the case with some AAA studios that are accused of profiteering and failing to listen to their players.
In 2017, one of my predecessors, Chris, released a blog about managing community toxicity, specifically the toxicity within the Overwatch community. As an avid Overwatch gamer myself, I thought I’d weigh in on this issue, since it’s been a few years since the release of this blog, and Overwatch has made a number of notable strides to rid itself of its infamously toxic reputation.