The Daily Grind: Have you ever been griefed in MMOs outside of combat?


It’s a mistake to assume that the term “griefing” in an MMO context only refers to a nasty act in PvP combat, such as corpse camping or fragging lowbies. There are many ways that the creative jerk can detract from the fun and enjoyment of fellow players.

Take, for example, that Tauren in the picture above. I had been waiting at this mailbox in World of Warcraft for hours to see when a small letter would spawn on the ground to start a new postal quest chain that was just added. Well, this Horde player saw me doing it, so he deliberately sat down on the spawn spot so I wouldn’t be able to click it. He remained there for an hour. Class act, right there.

And then there have been times when I’ve seen the other faction blitz into auction houses to kill the NPC auctioneers just so that it would mess up anyone doing business right then.

I’m sure you have a few examples, so share! How have you been griefed in MMOs outside of combat?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

No posts to display

newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:

Back when I was running the Big Mamas Nightclub in Ultima Online in the early 00’s, it goes without saying that there were some nasty types that just wanted to ruin our fun and would come to the events to cause lag with spells, or bring in tamed dragons and set them free, or spam the chat. So banning a few here and there from the castle was a common occurrence every Saturday night.

Well one group of banned boys decided to take revenge. First it was something mild like running around outside of the castle and doing all the same stuff they had done prior inside, but since all the action was in the center of the castle, it was pretty easy for all of us to ignore them. I still called a GM though, who came to give them a talk and told them to leave me alone.

The GM had said nothing about my customers though, so then they started to harass our customers who would line up to get in, either by making it very uncomfortable for them to stand there, or then they’d try to scare our customers away by making up nasty lies about me and our club.

That didn’t really work either though, since the nightclub was the hippest place to be on a Saturday night if you happened to be on Europa.

Their next step was to hunt down the owner of the small tower that was sitting right in front of the entrance to the castle and make him an offer he could not refuse. Then they moved in and every time I logged on, I had to see their names on the side of the screen as I went about my business in the castle. Also whenever exiting the castle or coming back to it, I’d have to pass right by them. They also got hold of my #ICQ number and started harassing me through that as well. Being a young stay-at-home mother at the time meant that I didn’t get much of a chance to get out much, so UO and these saturday events were very special to me. But what started out as a lovely dream of offering a nice experience to the players, ended up being a nightmare, and I was often left in tears by the end of the Saturday nights.

The boys decided to take things to the next level when they decided they’d create a casino that just happened to be open at the same time as the nightclub, and then they’d poach customers from the lineup outside to come to their place instead.

Around this time, DaoC had just come out, and since all of the above nonsense was really starting to get me down, I decided to quit UO for a while and go play DaoC instead. And that my friends, is why we can’t have nice things, because of idiots like that. :(


Well sure… Back in the day when Trion had a lot more trust currency than at present, I played this Korean import game who’s name eludes me where I was blocked from makin’ my trade route connection by a line of wagons parked on a bridge. This particular game was very foward-thinking and supported collision physics. The name is on the top of my tongue… A-something…
Anyhow there was a lot of “emergent gameplay” in that game.

Timothy Dupont

Even though it isn’t an MMO myself and crew members were griefed in GTA online. We were performing a heist setup mission and every time we got close to completing it the guy would kill his character. There was no way to kick him from the group so this continued for about a 30-45 minutes before I finally got frustrated and quit. Seeing as it didn’t matter and he would continue this not matter what, before I quit I started running him over during the mission just to satisfy my frustration with the guy.

Kickstarter Donor

People training mobs from the dungeons in Dark Age of Camelot…

Yelling to your group:


Kickstarter Donor

yes…yes… I’ve been griefed at least once in every game I’ve played, including the alpha in SkySaga! In AO one of my organization members (guild to non AO folks) was friends with a notorious griefer. She knew he had targeted me and she didn’t say anything. When my org found out later they were furious that she 1) allowed it and 2) didn’t get our PvP players to go after the person. But she was in the org longer than I was. I switched orgs soon after. In TSW I was griefed twice. I usually chalk this up to the fact my avatar is black. But, I report and ignore. In Second Life, well, back in the day, griefing was a way of life. It’s not so bad now because the tools to get rid of them are better. In every game I report griefers. I really cannot stand that kind of behavior.

Toy Clown

Oh yeah. I’m a roleplayer and I’ve seen my fair share of griefing over the past 20 years in MMOs. To the point I just stick them on an ignore list and keep roleplaying over them. Although I’ll admit sometimes I break character if it’s just me and a close gamer friend or two, and we’ll grief them back.

One of a griefer’s favorite tricks is to strip down and dance naked in the middle of people trying to RP. One day we decided to RP that the griefer was actually part of the scene and my friend playing a male character started hitting on the naked person and the rest of us joined in on the behavior. That’s one of the great things about being a RPer, as we’ve got an arsenal of psychological backgrounds and personalities to pull from to mess back with people. It’s rare we indulge in griefing back, but we’re not saints. Aholes get to us like anyone else after awhile.

The RP community I’m part of now deals with griefing to the level that the owners have mostly hidden the RP community. You have to fill out forms to gain access to the website and to the discord. The events and establishment forums are hidden from public view. Many of us have moved out of RPing in the open world and created venues off the beaten path to RP in, as the griefers filled the tavern we used to use with war elephants. Some RPers still try to RP around them, but for the most part we’re underground now.

That’s the part that makes me sad about griefers and not getting backup from development. Massively has posted on the extent griefers have gone after RPers in BDO, such as creating the Death to Rpers movement. I hate seeing RPers hide, but at least the community thrives underground in the world now. And the world is big enough that we don’t cross paths with griefers much anymore.


I wish I could play the Western version of BDO just so I could RP with you lot. Regrettably I’m IP blocked.

Reginald Atkins

had it happen a few times in FFXIV but it’s exceedingly rare and easy enough to bypass if you know how. anyone standing on an item just hit 0 on the number pad and it will select the nearest object and exclude players. But it’s not something that happens often in FF14.

Kickstarter Donor

I have been griefed a number of times, the most annoying was robably in WoW years ago. I am a carebear and an RP’er I ONLY play on RP PVE servers. I also love alts and I play both male and female characters.

However apparently some people are unable to separate an in game avatar from a player, so when one particular player found out (after hitting on me) with me telling him I was actually a male and not interested (bare in mind they guy had just met my character, and knew nothing of me or it, just that it was an attractive female avatar) he spent the next few hours following me around calling me gay, whispering abuse, being really abusive, getting in the way of mobs while flagged in an attempt to get me to accidentally hit him so he could pvp gank me etc.. and just generally gbeing a massive douche.

It was annoying but I didn’t rise to it, I have no clue how old the guy was and never saw him again after that day but I can say some things /ignore doesn’t fix and ticket turn around on harrassment reports with some games make reporting laregly pointless and little better than after the fact resolution which may or may not even happen as your never told either way.


Way back in Diablo 2 I was playing sorceress and some guy went after me that way. Like, come on, there are only 5 classes and they are gender locked, every man that plays that game must play as sorceress at some point. So I agreed to duel, wayported out of town with telekinesis and covered the field with hydras. Sure enough he figures out where I went and ported out to catch me — lags to death on the waypoint without taking a step. Seems like his game must have crashed too, because he did not respawn.

Nowadays I use /ignore sparingly. If I can engage the person and find common ground, or just keep my cool while he loses his temper… that’s a lot more satisfying.


As a male who plays exclusively female characters I totally get your frustrations. I’ve had similar things happen before. I can only imagine how annoying it must be for actual female gamers!


That goddamn bloody undead ‘event’ before Lich King…


I wouldn’t call entering the other factions AH to kill their NPCs griefing unless they are camping there and killing the NPCs as soon as they respawn.

As for actual griefing, I can’t think of a single instance where I’ve been griefed. I’ve certainly come across people doing annoying things – tagging my mobs, taking nodes I was clearly waiting for, spamming emotes etc – but never experienced anyone deliberately trying to make my day worse.

Closest I’ve come would be in PvP zones with people camping spawn spots, but I wouldn’t call that griefing, just cutting off reinforcements. There is always a way to avoid it but more often than not, it would end up in a good bit of PvP or me being able to lure people into the NPCs guarding the spawn points.