What the Crap?: Voice Chat

Is this thing on? You bet your sweet ass it is. But for many, there isn't a "thing." For others, some use this thing as a boom box over their shoulder like it's the 1980s, or they use it to be racist

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Is this thing on? You bet your sweet ass it is. But for many, there isn’t a “thing.” For others, some use this thing as a boom box over their shoulder like it’s the 1980s, or they use it to be racist homophobes. What is this thing? I’m talking about what players use to voice chat with, whether it’s a Bluetooth headset (PS3), a headset attached to a controller (360), or God knows what, and it only works for one game anyway (Wii).

A lot of videogames today require focused teamwork to get the job done online. Please indulge me with a few different scenarios that I’m sure many of you have experienced if you’ve ever ventured forth online. I’ve played my fair share of Ghostbusters, GTA4, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, and Fat Princess, and I’ve met a lot of “people.”

Scenario 1: I’ll huff and I’ll puff

Frequency: Almost certain

-StealthRabbiHD: Hey, I need some ammo!

-Noob64: <heavy breathing>

Sometimes people have their headsets on, and simply don’t talk the entire match at all, but you can hear them breathing and coughing. Why did you spend the money on a headset if you’re just going to sit there like a lump of shit and not help out the team? What the crap are you thinking?

Noob64 (left, although Vader does heavy breathing)
Noob64 (left, although Vader does heavy breathing too)


Scenario 2: Sailor chat

Frequency: Almost certain

-StealthRabbiHD: Can you repair my tank?

-Noob65: Shut up you fu*kin’ queer homo ni**a. I f**k you up and your mother all the damn time.

I can see why all games say that online interactions are not covered by the ESRB. It’s ridiculous how anonymity turns people into complete tools, especially little kids that shouldn’t be playing a rated-M-for-Mature game anyway. Thank goodness most games have a mute option. If you feel the need to tell strangers that you hate homosexuals, then maybe you should be worrying about your own problems.

Noob65. Didn't realize that Superman has yellow shirts now and uses nun-chucks.
Noob65. Didn't realize that Superman has yellow shirts now and uses nun-chucks.

Scenario 3: I got 7.1 speakers. Two of them are up my ass.

Frequency: Almost certain

-Noob66: <<loud game sounds>>

OK, you have a nice, loud sound system. So do I. But, I’m courteous enough to play it at a respectable level and turn my microphone volume down so I’m not broadcasting it to the party. Most games have a little speaker icon next to your name to indicate that your microphone is sending out audio. If it’s on ALL THE DAMN TIME, use that as a clue that your headset is cranked too high. This is why I really like Fat Princess—you have to hold the R2 button to speak. Truly genius!!

Noob65.
Noob65.

Scenario 4: Shake that ass, girl

Frequency: Very rare

-Noob67: <<same as Scenario 3, but instead of game sounds, it’s some random death metal or gangsta rap>>

-StealthRabbiHD: Why the hell is your headset so loud? Why do you think everyone wants to listen to your rap music?

-Noob67: Damn son, if you got a problem with it, then just mute me.

-StealthRabbiHD: Don’t you think everyone is muting you? What’s the point of having a headset?

-Noob67: <<beats continue>>

This happened to me when I was playing Ghostbusters online. This guy was blasting his fat beats all throughout New York City. Ghostbusters team games are not meant to be your own personal ghetto blaster experience. This is really a culmination of all the above scenarios.

Noob67.
Noob67.


Scenario 5: Family guy

Frequency: Pretty common (the average gamer age is in the 30s, or so I’m told)

-Noob68: Hey honey, can you pick up a sandwich? <<background conversations of several people>> <<baby crying>>

This happens a lot. It’s Scenario 3, but add a baby. I’m not a father yet, but I would think that having your baby around loud sounds and violent games probably isn’t a good idea. Furthermore, maybe your “family time” shouldn’t consist of your annoying, crying baby sitting next to you while you frag people. You obviously don’t care about your baby, and no one else in your squad does either.

Scenario 6: Mommy knows best

Frequency: Rare, but a gold mine

Jimmy’s Mom: Jimmy, take out the damn trash and quit playin’ those vidya games!

Jimmy: But Mom!!!!

The light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes you get hilarious conversations like this. People usually jump in and rip on little Jimmy. Poor Jimmy!

Jimmy
Jimmy.

Jimmy's Mom
Jimmy's mom.


Don’t worry, though; there are plenty of people out there willing to chat it up and enjoy the game with you. So please, spend the $15 and buy yourself a headset. You might run into a douchebag, or you might run into a decent teammate.

6 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 106 votes, average: 8.66 out of 10 (You need to be a registered member to rate this post.)
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About the Contributor


Since 2006

Mark Freedman is a hard hitting reporter on just what the crap is going on in the world of video games.He also writes reviews and manages the staff Q&A column. Occasionally, he has been known to take a shower. zzzz

11 Comments

  1. “If you feel the need to tell strangers that you hate homosexuals, then maybe you should be worrying about your own problems.”

    YES. You’re my new favorite writer.

  2. Haha, voicechat is actually part of the reason I play Team Fortress 2 almost exclusively. In TF2, the worst I run into is the occasional pubeless crooner who decides “Hey, I’m 8, how about a song everybody!”

    Halo 3 I don’t even dare touch because, in my head the audience that plays that are all 12 year old joint members of the KKK, Westboro Baptist Church and the Dane Cook fan club.

  3. the worst thing though is when five guys scream UR A GIRL???!!???? and then never shut u bout it….. its annoying

  4. I think a lot of times people dress up as girls just to get attention. The 10 minutes that I played “Playstation@Home”, there was about 1:10 girl to guy ratio. All the guys were hovering around the “girls” trying to get some ethernet-based action

  5. well trust me i dont dress up like a girl i just am one lol dressing up like a girl is way easier for me than guys ( i just wake up and BAM! girl)

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