The Daily Grind: How do you handle difficult MMO players?


Social gaming means both the good and the bad of social interactions. And while there are a lot of incredibly enjoyable conversations and encounters that we all have with others, there are also those times when we bump into players who might have been put on this earth to test your patience and forbearing.

These are the trolls, the short-tempered dungeon runners, the foul-mouthed sexists, the rude questers, the attention-seekers, and the like. Just difficult people that wander into your orbit and threaten to ruin your game session. So how do you handle them?

My general approach is to either ignore them or use goofy mockery and light-hearted silliness in response. Depends on the situation, of course, but I’ve learned a long time ago that it’s fruitless to try to stoop to their level. What’s your approach?

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!

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Depends on my mood.

Sometimes, I give them a good verbal(typed) tear-down if they deserve it.
Sometimes, I let things slide (Way too often).
Sometimes, I can’t be bothered. (Too many idiots, not enough time left.)
Sometimes, I report things.
Sometimes, I change the topic on them so they don’t get their ‘fun’.
Sometimes, I point out all the flaws in their logic.

I mean, I could keep going…there’s lots of various responses to poor behavior. (If I have mod powers, you get more than a little thump depending on severity).

I rarely ‘ignore’ outright…because letting stuff slide, leads to more of the same behavior, but some people choose to remain fools.


Depends on how specifically the player is difficult.

If it’s something clearly against the game’s TOS, report and, if applicable, remove from the group/guild. I make a point of reporting each and every player that is clearly violating the TOS even if I don’t trust the publisher to act on it.

If it’s not against the TOS, but it’s still abusive, point it out to them; if the player doesn’t back off and apologize (or if the player keeps “accidentally” doing it) put the player on ignore and remove from any group I’m a part of.

If they are annoying, but not abusive, then I just avoid paying attention to them.

Caveat: in group content I’m always either the tank or the healer (since I can’t stand playing DPS), so if I decide to stop the run until the abusive player is kicked it tends to work very well. And if the group decides to stick with the abusive player, well, I’ll likely find a new group before the group can find a replacement tank or healer.


My first line of defense is that I mostly play solo. Followed by ruthless use of /ignore, and actually reporting if it’s something obviously offensive. Mostly names that are clearly trying to bypass the profanity filter.

I never speak to anyone that gets such a response. There’s no point. To paraphrase someone famous (probably Mark Twain): “Never try to argue with idiots. They’ll drag you down to their level, then beat you with superior experience.”

Kickstarter Donor

If they are being idiots or annoying then they simply cease to exist in my universe.. straight on ignore and forgotten about.

If they are being offensive or troublesome in some regard, then above plus I report them.


Ignore player.

Does not check email

1.) If supported by the game comment on account/character account so you don’t end up teaming again. 2.) if it’s crap crossing conduct document and report it. 3.) block/ignore and move on.


When i was younger and new to mmo games i’d openly mock ’em with some verbal earboxing.
Now days i just put em on the Ignore list. Not that anything they say really riles me up or shocks me, it’s just that i never want to see what they have to say again.

Kickstarter Donor
Peregrine Falcon

I turn general chat off.

I talk with teammates in team chat. If that doesn’t work then I kick them and move on.

Basically I act like an adult, not an anti-social misanthrope.

Bryan Correll

Ignore them to the extent possible.

Kickstarter Donor

Polite mockery designed to drive them into a furious rage or simply putting them on ignore. If I can have some fun with an asshole in chat, why not? But usually it’s not worth the effort so they just get ignored/reported/whatevered.