Feb 272008
 

Whilst not everything about it is great, in general, I love Xbox Live. I love the whole gamertag & community ideals especially. And for someone who likes to play competitive games a lot, it’s been a godsend lately. I am amazed though in some ways how slow it’s been to progress to this point, and how much they miss on still that they could so easily implement & improve on.

Between myself & lordnaff with have some awesome ideas of things that could relatively easily be implemented over a setup like Live.. but for this post, I’m just going to talk about my recent experiences with reputation.

Whenever you play someone over XBox Live you get a chance to give them feedback. Two choices: prefer to play them again – positive feedback, or prefer not to. – negative feedback. Get enough positives and you gain ‘stars’ on your gamertag.

However if you dig into your own profile page on your 360, you can also see the percentages of people that have scored against you.. and that’s where it has been getting very interesting for me to check it out. 🙂

Until I got my 360 joystick, all I had played online was stuff like Halo 3, All-Pro Football 2k8, Bomberman, and the odd game of Speedball 2 and probably a few other random XBox Live Arcade titles. Throughout this time my reputation score was at 100% positive or no review left.

Then I started to play a LOT of Street Fighter 2′ and Virtua Fighter 5. I was playing these fighting games with my microphone off almost all the time, solely in ranked matches mode – ie: I wanted competitive games.

In a week or so I had a 17% negative score of “Unsporting Conduct”. I was slightly bemused but carried on.

A few weeks of play later I checked it again. Now it was at a whopping 50+ % negative score. I had received mainly negatives for “Unsporting Conduct”, but I’d now even had about 14% for “Quit Early” – which I never ever do under any circumstances, and even 14% complaint of “Too Aggressive”… I was astounded though, really. “Too Aggressive” on a ranked match on a fighting game?! :O Ridiculous, ridiculous, amusing and amazing all at once. I suppose I am supposed to stand there and let them hit my character or something. 😉

What I can see happening is that this has basically become an XBox Live “sore loser” % indicator for me more than anything. I am pretty sure that bad feedback % correlates quite well with my win % (which incidently is always around a steady 2 out 3 on both games). I’d love to know what the average negative score is for someone who plays a lot on Live. If you play fighting games well, it would seem that it will be naturally quite high just to people just ‘negativing you’ for being beaten by you. I assume Microsoft take this kind of thing into account, as you can actually get banned off Live for having bad enough feedback.

So I’ve become more intrigued to experiment with this and people’s attitudes to games and to losing or winning. The past few times I’ve played, I have been playing Street Fighter 2′ again, but this time with my mic on. I’ve been sure to say “hi” to everyone I play and comment and compliment ‘good game’ after and sometimes during the match, whether they talk back or not. But I’ve not been going soft at all in how I play. My negative % has dropped to less than 40% and I’ve had numerous nice comments from people about how they liked my attitude to getting beaten etc. But it seems humanising myself with voice has lessened the sore loser % a lot.

360 pad & headset mic

I’m going to try this on VF5 as well and see how it goes. Interesting my ‘rep’ seemed to take even more of a tanking previously on VF than it did on SF. As there are a huge amount of Japanese players on the game, I did wonder if there was some kind of silly unwritten VF “code of conduct” they tend to play under… plus of course they won’t really be able to understand me in many cases. But we’ll see… I hope to write an updated report on the perils and pitfalls of XBL ‘reputation’ after I’ve experimented more. I may also “go deep” on the attitude certain players have to certain moves and things in Street Fighter 2 especially. But I am really not familiar with the prevailing VF player attitude yet.

I’d love to see the stats Microsoft could have access too on this – and could of course give YOU access too if they so wished.

  2 Responses to “Reputable Repugnancy”

  1. There is also a decent (in fact INCREDIBLE considering the forum) discussion about this here:
    http://forums.xbox.com/19261032/ShowPost.aspx

    But you need to login to an Xbox Live account to view it I believe.

  2. Well just a note to add to this, I’ve not really bothered to pursue this further, because I came to realise that the XBL reputation system is in fact utterly flawed. This article explains some of the basics as to why:

    http://www.examiner.com/x-13078-Rochester-Xbox-360-Examiner~y2009m6d16-Does-Xbox-Live-reputation-work

    The % score doesn’t work as stated (it’s only positive vs negative), the ‘star’ score doesn’t work (it only seems to count total positives over time, with perhaps a tiny deduction for negatives), and “avoiding” people doesn’t actually avoid them, at least, not in most games.

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