How would you solve the toxicity issues with games like LOL/DOTA?

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#1 Posted by kronixi (34 posts) -

Simple question that id assume will get a multitude of answers.

The main reason why i'm opposed to the toxicity and the normalization of this type of behavior is because I have a lot of introverted friends who tend to be very adapt at games but will never play Dota with me because of the spewing hatred on the chat. My first response was "just block them/mute them" but when you have to do that with every single party you are queued with it gets laborious.

For me i would remove the report system all together it is just used against players who have had a bad game or were in a bad match-up and the rest of the party dog-piles on that one person.

I would increase incentives to being nice to other human beings providing wards, buying courier advising teammates what to do e.g "specter recommends lion to buy x"

Anyway its a tough question that valve cant solve so I'm interested to know what suggestions on how to cut down on the unhelpful language present in dota/lol chat

Kind Regards

Duder Dan

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#2 Posted by DanThePostman (19 posts) -

I don’t necessarily know about MOBAs per se, but when you have a large community, bad eggs are just bound to be an issue. It’s mainly about etching out a community for yourself and your friends if you want to invite them into your space. In a system where reporting is bullshit and barely gets anything of real importance done, the best way to combat it is to make your own community and let people join. If they’re a bad egg, you have control over whether or not they’re allowed to be a part of it.

Gather enough friends and scrimmage with each other. Get better at the game together by pushing each other and then take your work out into pub games. If there’s harassment there, then know that they’re the ones with an issue and it’s not yours. Take screenshots, provide evidence of trash behavior, and if that doesn’t work for reporting, instead, write an email with the screenshots. If the in-game report function is not making your game better than you have to go that extra mile to blow up people’s spots. We’ll never make any community fully free of this level of base attitude but speaking up on a larger magnitude than “in-game reporting” feels necessary at this point to get anything done.

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#3 Posted by shivermetimbers (1721 posts) -

Invite friends, turn off chat. I've never played a MOBA, but it does seem like communication is key.

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#4 Edited by Onemanarmyy (4501 posts) -

With a game like dota, communication is a major part of the game, but also the nr 1 avenue for possible toxicity. That said, i think it should be possible for anyone to play a game of dota with their friends and not have a crappy time because of an angry teammate. Making the chat opt-in instead of opt-out in unranked & arcade matches should help a bunch already. Everyone will still be able to chat, but it can only be seen by people that have opted in. Naturally party members chat should be open by default. pings should probably be visible by default, but if someone starts spamming it on you like 5x in rapid succession, it should mute pings from that person.

For ranked games, communication should be as it is right now though. It's just too important for people to know what their teammates are thinking. But unranked games should be a more casual affair where fun & experimentation are encouraged. I think Valve already has some clever tricks up it's sleeves to reduce toxicity with the behavior score, reports, shadowpool, time-outs,& timed muting. Though it seems like the behavior score takes a while before it really starts to matter for newer players, but if i recall correctly Valve tries to put a bunch of high behavior score players in matches with new players to at least increase the odds on having friendly people around as you learn the game. I've had thouzands of hours in dota and was pretty much at the top of the behavior score ranking and only encountered a shitty person like once every 10-20 games, so eventually the system does work as intended. But as a newer player that has a lot to learn, naturally you'll encounter a bunch of toxicity before your behavior score gets high enough (& you become good enough for teammates to not assume you are trolling them /weighing the team down intentionally)

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#5 Posted by bmccann42 (435 posts) -

Could they disable chat but enable some form of the "ping" system from Apex?

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#6 Posted by Acura_Max (773 posts) -

In dota, there is an option in the settings menu called "block all incoming messages or communication." There's also an option to block just the enemy communication. And since this is done in the settings menu, you don't have to mute everyone in the game at the start since it will be done automatically.

Communication is important in dota, but sometimes you just have to look out for yourself. If a team is super toxic, there's nothing wrong with muting everyone. I've seen high level pros such as Forward.CNCC just go into games and immediately mute everyone and still do well. Usually when I mute someone, the game is not in a good spot for my team. Some people may argue that if I mute people, I would not be able to win certain losing games. In my opinion, those games aren't worth getting stressed over.

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#7 Posted by Onemanarmyy (4501 posts) -

The ping system has been in Dota for many many years.

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#8 Posted by NuclearElephant (6 posts) -

To be honest, the best thing to do is mute them.

Sure you might have to do it a bunch, but it's better than getting flamed and being tilted/risk saying something back to them, then they flame some more/go afk/tilt you further, etc. It will increase you chances of winning.

What you can also do is mute them, and if you remember un mute them and see if they continue again.

Don't tell them you're muting them or say anything to them too because that's just going to make it worse.

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#9 Posted by nutter (2292 posts) -

2002 Answer: What are you talking about? All my game communities are cool!

2007 Answer: In Halo 3, we just try to be super cool to our opponents, which usually stops the toxicity before it starts

2012 Answer: Party chat

2019 Answer: Private games

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#10 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (7649 posts) -

I think there are without doubt software and server solution to toxicity. The problems is these solutions turn off even players who don't say a toxic thinking 99% of the time. Because one false positive or one instance where they don't realize they said something gets them booted off ...they they get mad because they think "It is not fair"

Publishers just want to sell games - that is it. If the people who cussed or said 'ugly shit' were booted out of games - the publishers would sell less and less games. Money is far more important to the publishers than civil decorum on chat. Gamer can say all the sexist, racist, classist stuff they want as long as Activision, Ubisoft, and EA get paid. Same for social media; the tenor of discussion on social Media could cleaned-up very quickly, but there's no profit in that.

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#11 Edited by Onemanarmyy (4501 posts) -


But we're talking about free games here. If a game has the reputation that it's a toxic hellhole for crazy people, a lot of people would not even bother checking it out. And the people that are interested in the game might eventually stop returning & spending money on it if the toxicity gets too out of hand. For these devs there's a vested interest in minimizing toxicity in the game. That's why a game like Dota already has so many systems in place to give certain players a higher chance of having a friendly encounter, while stuffing the bad apples together.

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#12 Posted by OurSin_360 (6200 posts) -

I think it starts at the developer level, maybe institute some sort of reward system that rewards good behavior. In game boosts for giving and receiving good reviews of conduct or something. I am a firm believer now that "punishment" does not work and never has, it just reinforces the mindset of bad behavior and being a "bad" person. IMO.