Stop freeing them

Week after week, I see WC groups with maybe 1 or 2 people who are new (achievement after the clear), yet those same groups end up with 5+ players getting assimilated on Ozma, and stepping into 5+ garrote traps on hair lady.

Stop freeing them. It’s the only way they’re going to learn that they can, and are supposed to, avoid those mechanics. I can’t think of any other reason why a player, doing the same fights over and over again, can’t figure out how the mechanics work, unless they have a misunderstanding of how they work.

They won’t learn if you free them. It’s their expectation that they can mess up the mechanic, and the rest of group will drop everything and come fix their mistake. If gaols and traps were instant death mechanics, everybody would have them down perfectly by now. Ultimately, if there is no consequence for failure, then there is no learning.

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You get sucked into these traps if someone near you steps into them. Overall your idea is absolutly against every normal thinking because these mechanics are that way that you can HELP your group members. But yeah its ok don’t get people out of that stuff (if its their fault to end up in it or not) and i hope no one will help you if you do a mistake and i bet it happens often enough, because only these toxic players blame others for mechanical mistakes and demand to let these players die.

If players don’t make that mistake, then nobody suffers for it. That’s the point. My idea is congruent with any reasonable line of thinking. Is Ozma casting Assimilation? Then I should face away and avoid it. Did I mess up avoiding it? Then I can still face away from him and the debuff will drop off. It’s asinine to think “I messed on Assimilation, I’d better completely ignore it and just let my group cover for my mistake when they bail me out of a gaol”.

Let’s move onto the hair traps. The reasonable line of thinking is “there’s a big yellow AoE marker that I should avoid; now it’s left a purple circle that I should also avoid; I’d better not step on it or near it”. It’s asinine to think “oh, a big yellow AoE marker, I’ll just stand in it; oh now it’s a big purple circle I should avoid, but I’ll stand here or walk through it; oh, now I’m caught in a trap; oh well, my group can just cover for my mistake”.

Each of these mechanics is telegraphed for several seconds before the trap occurs. People don’t avoid them because they feel that they don’t have to, and that the rest of group can just fix it for them. “Learn to play a little better” isn’t an elitist statement, nor some symptom of a superiority complex; it’s what players should be doing.

I mean you could let them sit in the traps and stuff…or you could attempt to explain to the players what they’re doing wrong (it should be pretty apparent which players don’t know what they’re doing very quickly after all).

I know not everyone will be receptive to being helped (even if you phrase it helpfully instead of arrogantly), but the only way you’re going to cut down on the number of people failing mechanics is to try and help them recognise what they’re supposed to be doing about it. It can’t hurt to try right?

I know I certainly would have appreciated it if people took the time to explain what I was supposed to be looking out for when I attempted to go through WC on my first go. We didn’t complete it because people kept messing up Ozma mechanics. Including the people that were moaning about me making mistakes because they preferred to do that than explain what I was doing wrong.

The most baffling part of this is the people will come to defend it

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As a member of a very small FC who has done 4 rounds of crafting 4-5 airship pieces at a time; it is incredibly tedious and adds absolutely nothing to the workshop experience. There are better ways to have everyone participate in workshop crafting, and forcing you to gather 3 other people to AFK while you press buttons is not one of them. It feels more like artificial gating because they couldn’t (or didn’t have time to) make actual content.

The most baffling part of this is the people that will come to defend it because they feel like you should do things with others in an MMO, so any kind gating is ok. Well, I agree with the idea that MMOs = socialization, but I don’t ask 3 people to come and AFK while I do a dungeon.

They weren’t being snit, the other person was being a dick, and now you’re being rude. The facts are that this is tedious, unnecessary, and exclusionary. I run a small fc of 12 members, a few being alts and the rest being fairly active. Only two of my members craft, myself and my co-leader. That’s it. No one else has fun with it, no one else wants to do it. So not only is getting a party of 4 crafters together like pulling teeth, they can’t even participate because they literally do not enjoy crafting. And no one should be forced to craft. Asking my other members to stop running dungeons/raids/trials, put on their level 1 crafting class, and afk in the workshop is unfair to them, don’t you think? Why should they have to stop doing what they enjoy in order to just stand around doing nothing?

There are better ways of getting this done. If they just let anyone in the fc make the turn ins, people would actually feel as though they were helping. As of now, it feels like I’m forcing them to put their fun on the back burner for my own. If it felt like it wasn’t punishing us for being a small company with only 1 or 2 crafters or if it wasn’t like pulling teeth getting a party together, no one would mind it. But as of now it’s just really obnoxious.

The problem in here lies from the first concept design. SE designed a content where they want the community to be more socialize, FC have something to do together and also from players requested. SE did success create and delivered the idea and the concept, but the way they made it work is wrong.

Not only the basic explanation of how Company Workshop works is no different than a delivery quest (take Ixali daily delivery quest as an example): you make the item, delivery them to the machine NPC. The only different is you are not doing this alone but you may ask other people inside the FC to help you fasten the progress. And it has became a bit far from what they created from the first idea.

My FC has about 12 people online at any given time, usually 4-5 of which are mid to high level crafters. Except those people are *also* high level raiders, or working on another class, or hanging out with a friend, or afk reading something on the internet, etc. Getting 4 people in one place is only easy when you’re in the rare FC where everyone is motivated to do company crafting. For the other 99% of us, getting 4 people in one place is difficult because company crafting is somewhere near the bottom of the list of things they want to do, usually just below “Log off and do anything else at all with my life”.

If company crafting actually WAS a group activity, I could probably get more people excited about it. But right now, people don’t want to be bothered to show up and stand around so someone else can push a button when there are a great many other things they could be doing with their time.

I dont think it should be added to Private estates… theres no FC content as it is… at least the FC crafting station made a reason to be in a FC, I know there will be people who dont want to be in a FC… but then they dont need the crafting station, since it was created for airships originally to get certain mats and Diadem, and they made a way for ppl without a FC to do Diadem … but thats my 2 cents.

This is a team based game mode

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This is a team based game mode, and communication is key. They boast that there will be new macros added, but to what extent will they cover? SE, you need to understand that we, as the players, need to communicate specific things at specific time. Certain people may need to get medals, boxes may be spawning soon and you need to warn your team, you may be out of MP and need a BRD/MCH to assist, you may need to tell your team to get mid, get to base, push forward, fall back. You may need to coordinate with your team to burst down a target while CC’ing another. That target may change during the match. Communication is absolutely crucial in team based PvP, so removing that will make the Solo Queue gaming experience absolutely worse than it is now.

You may think this will put a bar on toxicity, and that players will finally reach a point where they are not flaming each other, but here’s the thing…Censorship does not work in this world. Players will simply send tells after the game to talk ill towards their teammates that messed up or were not skilled. They will make alts on those players realms simply to express their disdain. This is what used to happen in past MMO’s which didn’t have in-match chat during PvP. Even through this censorship, people -will- get flamed, people -will- get told they suck. Taking away the player’s ability to speak in one forum only makes the situation worse, as the emotion they are feeling will build up and carry outside of the match, instead of it being handled in the short match time during the game, and then being wiped clean as the next match comes around.

Keep this “feature” and only apply it to those that are to receive punishment for their toxicity. This way, there is justified punishment for those people, as the previous punishment (permanent bans) is extremely harsh given the context of the situation. The goal would then be for them to realize that communication is key to success, as they will have a difficult time playing in The Feast without being able to communicate with their team.

Chiming in just to state my disapproval as well. I’m sure just about everyone here has lost their temper in chat during Feast but this is doing so much more damage than it heals. The Matchmaking already creates heavily imbalanced games where players with the skill level of a Bronze/Silver rank are being matched as Gold/Platinums… removing any complex way to communicate with your teammates is just going to make the games that much more imbalanced, noncompetitive, and overall unfun.

I entirely disagree with the change – as mentioned chat is crucial… But, although I will get a lot of slack for saying this – I absolutely understand why. PVP is a competetive game and tempers run high… That’s to be expected. What’s not to be expected is the sheer level of toxic attitudes that can arise. I’ve been active in PVP since the beginning pretty much and have seen it all … “Omg ur so bad” “wtf u doing” – things like this can be expected. Things like telling others to die, homophobic slurs, calling people a plethora of mental health diseases – these are NOT ok … But it happens constantly and it has OBLITERATED the community. Wait times are insane, and all of us complain about them, it’s naive to think that this isn’t because of attitudes.

A lot of the top pvp’ers are very toxic, and it’s honestly your fault for this change. This is a game that really strives on the positive community – and some of the stuff I’ve been called in the past has been pretty much shocking (I obviously can’t post it here). Sure, report them – but there’s no reason at all why I or anyone else should be presented with that in the first place.

Macros are SO important in Feast. It’s difficult to be aware of everything that goes on, and be able to react accordingly. Healers can’t macro to indicate that they are stunlocked or need full swing purified off of them. Ranged DPS can’t tell us when their burst is up. My main job, Paladin, is very reliant on CDs and communicating them to my healer, I always tell them remaining time on my Cover and Tetsudo so they can respond appropriately and we don’t accidentally cover and attune at the same time.

Some point Garlemald will get a bit of the Ishgard treatment in

I figured I’d make a thread to contain a lot of the speculation and discussion about 3.5 and 4.0 that’s inevitably been leaking into other threads simply due to the gradual trickle of information we’ve been getting about both since the Las Vegas Fan Fest combined with a lot of people’s hype, concerns and general enthusiasm.

I don’t necessarily mind the Zeno villain thing but I am a bit bummed Regula sounds like he is going to go out in a relatively minor role. I still hope we will see more moderate Garleans. They said that they will be comparing the Garleans to the Allag the Garleans try to emulate and while there was a lot wrong with the Allag, I don’t think they were entirely bad as a nation (apart from Miqote persecution the bastards!)

One thing I kind of hold out with is the idea that being loyal to the idea of the Garlean state and loyal to the imperial family don’t necessarily have to be the same thing. We know that Garlemald has conflicting internal factions and I expect us to end up going to Garlemald proper some day. When your talking about a faction like Garlemald, there aren’t that many threats big enough to make them reliable allies at the moment unless the Ascians switch tact completely and start operating openly or unless the threat to Garlemald is Garlemald itself.

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My hope is at some point Garlemald will get a bit of the Ishgard treatment in that we have to deal with the elements that are a threat but we aren’t going to go there to throw the baby out with the bath water.

One day we’ll get our Larsa, I’m sure. At this point, wishing ill for the entire Empire is wishing for two continents to be thrown into upheaval. We and the Garleans share a common goal: the salvation of the world. It’s everything about how to achieve that goal that we disagree on. But the Empire has been heading down the same path as Allag, and are making some of the same mistakes. We need only purge certain factions and points of view to make peace with the Garleans … after a satisfying conflict, I hope. I mean, I’m lukewarm excited for our “Larsa”, and all, but what about our “Vayne”? I’ve been so focused on my high hopes for Elidibus as one of the apex antagonists that I’ve barely considered it!

I get the feeling that it’s going to be both. The Griffin has already been establishing that Ala Mhigo’s new viceroy is a brute compared even to Gaius van Baelsar, but at the same government views tend to vary much more than populous views. Most people just want stability and opportunities to thrive, and some people will surely be afraid that handing control of the nation over to a resistance that’s done nothing but fight and run for two decades (and ousted the King of Ruin at that) is a horrible idea, no matter how bad Zenos is. Sometimes the regime is all that needs to change. Sometimes attempting regime change does more harm that good. I can think of some real-world relevance…

Sounds like seven hells of risk! I mean, having a concrete definition of “Okay, this story is in THIS year, this story is in THIS year” will be a huge boon to certain aspects of the game experience (like not being asked what year it is every three to twelve days). And there are a ton of ways to do some really fun stuff with it.

On the other hand, the bubble was put in place for reasons. We can’t just go back in time when we teleport west of Ala Mhigo, so I assume time would move everywhere. That means we’ll have to maintain the timeline archives much better than we have been to ensure things don’t get crazy. Imagine if 4.0 starts and the Battle of Silvertear Skies was now 16 years ago? Eep!

Yeah, there’s definitely a contradiction at play regarding Xenos. I’m not sure how to read into the whole ‘nobody will sympathise with him’ statement because a character can do awful things and still have at least some redeeming qualities. Cersei Lannister is my favourite example for those familiar with Game of Thrones – a lot of people brush her off as ‘evil’ but fail to understand why she acts like she does. I do hope they’re not backing down on the more moderate angle of the conflict. Turning Garlemald into a one dimensional villain across the board after seeing the likes of Gaius and Regula would be very disappointing.

FC can work together to reach a goal

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I have a plan to move to Tonberry (might be) soon enough and I’m looking for a very special FC in Tonberry to stay.
I have a few candidate to choose from and 100 Acre Wood is in my first list because your family are very active at recruiting ppl. Rarely ppl use their own thread because they don’t really care much about recruiting. This is a big plus for your family (FC).

I’m not a person that like to jump from FC to other FC so I’ll select my candidate very carefully.
My base criteria for FC is about 100 or more members on it and has a FC House, FC House is very important because it show you that your FC can work together to reach a goal.
There are 3 important questions that I need some answer:

1. Activity
How active is your FC at the moment? What plan do you have or use to keep your member interest at your FC and playing FF ARR?
Member activity is very important because nobody want to be alone and left behind.

2. Guild Management
How good is your FC management, FC site, and information sharing? How about the head family, how good is the leader?
If you can’t manage your FC, then there is no FC. FC is a country need to be manage by a strong leadership. FC site is very important to keep your member updated with the lastest information and status of your FC.

3. Guild Friendliness
How friendly is your member to help other member in need? Are they very helpful or just ignorant?
Not all ppl is an old ARR player, some of them are new at this game. Some of them are shy to chat or talk, some of them might not an English fluent speaker. But they are still your family and your friendliness could reach their hand and heart to be more open for their family.

I know I can read the first page for some of this information, but I want a member to answer this question and also for the latest update of your family.
Considered this as a bump and your family recruitment. Also if you have any questions I’ll be happy to answer it for you.
Thank you very much.

It’s a bonus and future recipes/ items are not designed with the idea

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So with the new mentoring system out for people who have mastered crafting/gathering and the rise in Diadem gathering parties, anyone think we should have a small bonus as a light/full party of crafters or gatherers with their own party bonus? It could help to mentor someone with a small boost to GP/CP or control/perception etc. Nothing major but would encourage people to party up for things like airship building, fc events, or even tutoring/mentoring new players coming into the world of crafting/gathering. What do you guys think?

Example would be like Miner could give a small percent in perception while fishers give a small increase in GP, etc. On the crafter end maybe 2 or so could give a small increase of control, craftsmanship or CP just like a full/light party of battle classes do currently.

As long as it’s a bonus and future recipes/ items are not designed with the idea that you will definitely have this bonus running, then sure. I’ve always thought of crafting and gathering as sort of solo gameplay, but I could see making it more of a team activity (optionally).

We already have bonuses from FC, which are very nice, but the dev team has thus far not designed content that required that they be up so I can imagine that they could do the same with this, though at some point if there are enough optional bonuses floating around that you could have you eventually have to take them into consideration, otherwise players will be able to craft/ gather items with much lower stats than designed. I don’t think we’d be anywhere near that territory yet, though.

I don’t even get why you replied to this. The only response before yours was a negative reaction, which has more likes even.
We can’t trust that group content for crafting/gathering will ever be good or fun, so far every update for DoL/DoH has been crippling.
Airship content was a dud, a bunch of effort most often done by 1 or 2 people but required an arbitrary Light Party to get any actual progress done, even though most of that party had nothing to do with the work effort.

If crafters had one, it’d be like a liquor break, where you could pretend you’re Gerolt.
Maybe restore a little CP or give Quality a nudge. You could use it to try and salvage those times where Hasty Touch decides it wants to fail 5+ times.

I’d rather not see stat buffs from partying. Make them too small, then they’re trivial and no one would bother partying anyway. Make them too big, then players would see them as a requirement, then it becomes so commonplace that devs have to make it a requirement so as to keep content “challenging.”
The idea of giving smaller crafters a helping hand is interesting, but I feel like that’s what the gear buyable from scrips is for.

mogffxiv – More Final Fantasy XV footage from the latest build

Spanish website Vandal has gone up with over 42-minutes of new Final Fantasy XV footage from the first six hours of the game. Along with their impressions (in Spanish, mind) we’re given another look at the near-final version of the game running on PlayStation 4.

Additionally, the video features Spanish subtitles and menus over English voice acting. Have a look below.

Final Fantasy XV is due out on November 29 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Final Fantasy XIV dropping PlayStation 3 support with Stormblood expansion on mogffxiv

Final Fantasy XIV‘s next expansion Stormblood was announced today at the game’s Fan Festival in Las Vegas. Slated for release early next Summer, the team revealed (to cheers) that support for PlayStation 3 will end when the expansion launches. If you wish to continue playing the game after the expansion, you’ll need to upgrade to a PlayStation 4. To make this easier, Square Enix and Sony will be partnering for a new upgrade campaign closer to launch where — if you buy a PlayStation 4 — it will be at no extra cost.

Director/producer Naoki Yoshida added that he thanked every fan who bought a copy of the game on PlayStation 3, acknowledging that the platform was instrumental in reviving Final Fantasy XIV with A Realm Reborn‘s launch in 2013.

Meanwhile, on the Windows side of things, the team revealed they will be raising the minimum specs of Final Fantasy XIV at Stormblood‘s launch. Specifically, they encourage you to upgrade to a 64-bit operating system to get the most out of the expansion.

During a Q&A panel later on today, Yoshida was asked about the possibility for NX (Nintendo) support. Yoshida’s response was that their policy is to have everyone who has Final Fantasy XIV play together [on the same servers]. While this isn’t a direct yes or no, Yoshida’s response echoes similar comments he’s made regarding a possible Xbox One version of the game in the past. This stance will determine, it seems, if Final Fantasy XIV will release on any current or future platform.

Final Fantasy XIV Stormblood will release in Early Summer 2017 for Windows PC, PlayStation 4, and Mac.

mogffxiv | Hitman Episode 6: Hokkaido releases on October 31

With 2016 almost coming to a close, Io-Interactive has announced the release date and location for the sixth and final episode of Hitman. The season finale is set within Hokkaido, Japan and will release on October 31.

The mission titled “Situs Inversus” brings Agent 47 to the grounds of a private hospital and resort. The facility is a fusion of Japanese beauty and cutting-edge technology, featuring its own Zen gardens, organic sushi restaurant and traditional Japanese hot spring. There, the young assassin is tasked find and take out two targets.

Teaser trailer

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In case you missed out on all of the previous Hitman episodes, rest assured as Square Enix has planned to release a complete collection of the whole season on January 31. Click here to find out more.

Ask Dr. NerdLove: Am I Too Ugly To Date? on mogffxiv

Hello you electric blue angels of the abyss, and welcome to Ask Dr. NerdLove, the only dating advice column to master the Dim Mat.

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This week, we’re talking about what it takes to be more attractive. Is it all about the face? The body? The bank account? Or is there something more to it? What if you’re not good looking at all? Is there any hope for you?

Obviously I’ve got an answer for this, otherwise we’d’ve picked a different question. Let’s do this thing.

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Hi Dr. NerdLove.

As someone who is in university I constantly see the most painfully attractive women in my day to day life. For most of my life I have simply accepted the inevitable, that I will never have a girlfriend, that I will never have sex and that I will be romantically alone until the day I die. However, constantly seeing the most cruelly attractive women on campus has made the idea of being alone increasingly more and more unbearable until I feel like I’m at breaking point where if I don’t try I will regret it for the rest of my life. This means that I’m attempting to put a life time of feeling ashamed of being attracted to anyone aside, overhaul my life and for the first time in my life attempt to date. This leads to the first major stumbling block.

What if there’s such a thing as being too ugly?

Going back as far as I can remember, the standard response of the opposite sex to me has always been the same and it can be summed up by the word “ew” or a slightly longer “eeewwwwww”. Even when I stopped having any hope of ever being in a relationship, it felt like I had to be constantly reminded of my place and as a result dating has always seemed like an alien concept that was only for other people.

I’ve always felt ashamed whenever I felt even the slightest attraction towards anyone, because this wasn’t something meant for me. To be brutally honest it still feels the same today. For example, you frequently make reference to getting smiles from women as an indicator that they are open to being approached, but in my entire 22 years of being alive I have never once seen this. There are only two standard responses I ever see upon eye contact, either complete and total apathy or absolute putrid disgust. That’s all there is.

It doesn’t matter whether I am laughing with friends at a bar, just sitting in Starbucks with a neutral facial expression or suffering in the university library, the response is always the same. When I say this, I don’t mean hanging around on the streets making eye contact with women like some kind of turbo creeper, but the kind of places where you have mentioned that this is appropriate in your articles. I then compare this with the ease with which my tall, good looking friend effortlessly attracts smiles everywhere he goes and even has women approaching him. This makes it very difficult to believe that it is even possible for women to be attracted to me.

This leaves me stuck in a rut. I want to believe it’s possible that I can be in a relationship but all evidence makes it difficult to believe such a thing is possible. That by virtue of the way I look women will always want me to stay away from them in any context outside of platonic friendship. I feel like if approaching women is getting your foot in the door then I can’t even get that far. Without ever experiencing a hint that any woman could ever be attracted to me gives me the fear that no matter how much I improve it’ll never overcome my facial features or my height (5'8"). Yet at the same time the thought of never being in a relationship has become too unbearable especially while I’m in university. So at the moment I’m in a sort of limbo where I feel like a strange alien man sent from another planet to never experience dating, and I simply don’t know where to go from here.

A Sexual Nothing

You know, ASN, I deal with a lot of guys with problems like yours. So many, in fact, that I may start a policy of requiring minimal standards before I can agree that someone’s actually ugly. From the letters I get, I expect grotesquerie. I expect vestigial horns, massive goiters with teeth, Kuato coming out of their chest.

Every time, however, the guy tends to be someone who’s… actually pretty average. They may not be challenging Denzel Washington for “most symmetrical face” any time soon, but they’re hardly Joseph Merrick. More often than not, most of what’s needed is some Proactiv and/or braces, not radical plastic surgery.

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But here’s the thing: not being conventionally good looking doesn’t keep you from being successful with women.

The fact that hot dudes exist doesn’t mean that less hot men are left having to fight for the scraps like rabid gibbons with knives strapped to their arms. There’re veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan who’ve come home with massive facial scarring who’ve since gone on to get married and have kids.

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Lots of “ugly” guys have girlfriends—so many, in fact, that it’s a trope in fiction and real life. Fat guys have wives. Short guys have long, happy relationships. Hell, I’m 5’8”, same as you, and I’ve dated women who tower over me. Not being concerned about being short is intensely appealing, especially to women who’ve gotten stick from dates and boyfriends about wearing heels. Good looks may help when it comes to dating, they’re not the end-all, be-all that people think they are.

To start with: “good looking” is incredibly variable and personal. Matt Smith looks like a statue from Easter Island but he gives fangirls the screaming thigh-sweats. Some folks will swear by Chiwetel Ejiofor’s smile, while others could care less. Vincent Cassel is sex on toast to many other women, while others would never touch him with a borrowed vagina.

For example, pull up a photo of Geoffrey Arend. He’s not going to win any beauty contests anytime soon. Possibly ever. But he’s also married to Christina Hendricks. Now look at Steve Buscemi. Really look. I want you to look deep into those baggy, hangdog eyes, gaze long and hard on those crooked teeth… and remember that he’s married with kids. Mick Jagger’s got a face like a bulldog chewing on a wasp but still banged his way through half the women at the Ford Modeling Agency. Hell, Serge Gainsbourg looks like a damn Deep One and still got European ass like a drunk man with a stolen credit card at a St. Tropez donkey auction.

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But, I hear you cry, they’re famous actors and musicians! They’ve got stuff going for them besides their looks!

Exactly.

Guys frequently confuse “being attractive” with “good looks”. While the looks and attraction do go hand in hand, they’re not synonymous. Being attractive is about more than just your face or your height or your physique; it’s about the whole package. People who seem to date folks who’re “out of their league” get that there’s no such thing as “leagues”; there’s people who dig what you bring to the table and people who don’t. Sometimes that’s looks. Other times it’s an ability to make someone feel special, or to sing like an angel. Still other times, it’s the ability to make people laugh.

Before someone brings it up: yes, money can help attract women… it attracts women who like money. It’s also clearly not necessary, seeing as “broke, couch-surfing, unemployed musician boyfriend” is a cliche that’s older than steam.

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Being conventionally good looking is certainly a help in the short term, especially since they work to create attraction of the bat. But science has found that looks aren’t the long-term advantage you would think. In the paper “Relational Mate Value: Consensus and Uniqueness in Romantic Evaluations”, researchers at UT Austin found that personality and uniqueness were more attractive than looks.  While people might rate hot folks as being more desirable at first, after three months, the people with desirable personalities – warmth, openness, friendliness, etc – were the hottest dating tickets around. Why? Because getting to know someone makes them more attractive to you.

This works to your advantage, ASN. You may not be able to do a straight cold-approach at the bar, but that’s fine. We very rarely date someone we’ve just met; 9 times out of 10, we date people we’ve gotten to know, whether over days, weeks or even months. Playing long game means you get to play to your strength. As long as you realize that your problem isn’t on your skull, it’s inside it.

As woo-woo as this may sound, a lot of your problem is attitude. Reality is subjective and our beliefs control them. Believing you’re ugly and unattractive means that you’re going to act as though you are. It’s going to permeate every aspect of your life. You put less care into how you dress or how you groom yourself because what’s the point? Your body language is going to be closed off and unappealing. You hunch over and fold in on yourself in order to take up less space. You try to avoid making eye contact or drawing attention to yourself. You’ll see people looking at you and assume, absent of any evidence, that they’re repulsed by you. How couldn’t they be?

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Change that belief, on the other hand, and you’ll get entirely different results. Adopting a more positive attitude actually improves your life on a practical level. To start with, people prefer to associate with positive individuals. Negative people are energy vampires who suck the life out of folks. But a positive, confident attitude also increases your emotional resilience, so that not only does failure not destroy you, but you’re more willing to take risks. It puts you in a position to take advantage of opportunities as they arise instead of wringing your hands and thinking there’s no way you could go for it.

It affects you on a physical level too. Feeling more confident gives you more confident and open body language, which is more attractive. You’ll dress better. You’ll be more likely to actually talk to people instead of just assuming that they couldn’t stand you.

So how do you get there?

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Well, you want to build yourself up. Take some pages from those guys I mentioned earlier. Start with your external presentation. Part of Gainsbourg’s appeal, for example, is the man had style. He may have had the Innsmouth Look, but he also dressed sharper than a tack. Dressing well, even if it’s just a well-fitted pair of jeans and a shirt, makes you feel like a million bucks. Go to a salon and talk with a stylist about an easy to maintain haircut that’ll work with your hair type and face shape. Make sure you shower and use deodorant. These are all very little things that may not change your physical shape but will change your appearance and help form the basis for changes in your attitude.

Next, you want to get more in touch with your passions and interests, the things that make you unique and special. Collect experiences, so you have stories to tell. Look for adventures and live a more active life, one that people would want to take part in. Don’t assume that because you’re not in the top 1% of something that you’re hopeless. You don’t have to be the best singer or dancer or the funniest guy or whatever. You just need to develop your passions, the things that you can do that will help people enjoy themselves in your presence. The most important attractive aspect of someone isn’t their looks or their money or their job: it’s that they’re fun to be around.

You may be an acquired taste, so give people time to acquire you. Tinder may not work for you, but going to Meetups or taking classes or getting involved in volunteering will.

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But most importantly: learn to love yourself and take pride in yourself. Your attitude is destiny. Learn to realize that you’re awesome and cultivate that awesomeness and you’ll find that your dating life will improve.

Good luck.

Hey Doc,

This is my first time writing to your column but you’ve helped a lot of people and I love reading your stories on Kotaku. Let me cut to the chase.

I work as an I.T. specialist for a major theatre company. During the winter I’m insanely busy and during the summer I’m bored out of my mind.

This past summer I decided that I was going to give an mmorpg a shot. I’m a huge gamer and decided that this summer I was going to try a different genre one that’s out of my norm. So I decided to play Final Fantasy 14.

I met someone the first day of playing, joined their free company and she and I became best friends. Months passed and we were hanging out every day pretty much online. She was dating someone who happened to also be the company leader. Their relationship fell through and after a week or so she and I were dating online. We left the free company and started our own.

We texted every day, every night, and this turned to phone calls every night before bed. Before you know it not even a month in and we’re both saying I love you. It scared me a bit at first but I hadn’t been in a relationship for 3 years, so it was nice to have someone to love and to love me back. Maybe a little naive.

Things started moving really fast. We’d say things like I’ll love you forever, get into really strong and intense conversations about how deep our love is. And then something happened. I have never been possessive but this girl started saying things like, “I don’t want you talking to women,” “I don’t want you hugging girls in game, unless it’s family,” “avoid women at all costs.”

Now before when we were friends, I hugged everyone, I was the life of the party, being super nice and friendly with everyone. So I loved her and I stopped doing that, I basically cut off all women. She said that she would cut off all men but I told her I didn’t care if she talked to or hugged men in game as long as they were friends. She refused, believing it to be similar to cheating.

This all started trickling more and more into my real life. She couldn’t go ten minutes without a text, she’d get mad if I didn’t keep them coming and especially if I couldn’t call. So mad in fact that phone calls would be one sided, me talking, her saying nothing.

I had made plans to go see her, but because of my job that fell through. The reason being I got into trouble at work because I was ignoring all the females in the office. Texting and calling at work. Something I’d never do. That day she threatened suicide. And has said on many occasions afterwards she wished she was dead.

It’s no longer summer and I’m busy all the time, when we do talk it’s mostly always a fight. The times that it isn’t we’re saying I love you, I want to see you, I want to be with you, I don’t want to lose you. She hates my job and wants me to leave it. I can’t do that, I worked hard to get where I am. I’ve yet to see her in person.

I’m to the point where I’m exhausted and unsure what to do because I’m scared that if I break up with her, to end this stringing along, that she’ll kill herself. I don’t want that. I think I jumped the gun on the love aspect. It’s not that I don’t like her a lot, that I don’t insanely care about her. It’s just this isn’t working out.

I don’t know what to do, I made an immense mistake, we’ve only been dating 2 months and things have progressed to this. Could you help me?

A Moogle In Love

Yes, I can help you, AMIL. It’s very easy.

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DUMP HER NOW AND NEVER TALK TO HER AGAIN. You get out of there like all of hell and half of Hoboken was after you. Then get down on your knees and thank whatever god you believe in that you didn’t spend the money to go see her.

Holy hopping sheep shit dude, your girlfriend is waving more red flags than a NASCAR race in a hurricane.

Let’s break it down for a moment. We’ll start with the fact that you started “dating” within a week of her “breakup” (scare quotes are intentional) with the guild leader. While people do often leave a relationship and get right into another, this behavior is suspicious at best when you’re dealing with people in the flesh.

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Then there’s the fact that you went from chatting to saying “I love you” when a) you’d been dating for less than a month and b) you’d never met in person. The former is bad enough; declaring your love for someone you’ve known for less than six weeks tends to be a sign of emotional immaturity when they’re actually present with you. It’s even more true when you’ve never actually met.

While long, happy relationships can and do frequently start online, the fact is: relationships have a physical component. You don’t really know somebody online as well as you do when you see them in real life. Phone calls, Facetime, Skype… none of this can adequately communicate whether or not you will actually have chemistry when you get together in the flesh. Plus: you miss any number of signs of who they really are, from the way they smell to the way they treat the waitstaff at restaurants.

So yeah, there’s that.

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Then there’s the fact that she hits toxic relationship bingo: love-bombing you at the start before demanding constant contact, demanding that you quit your job (to spend more time with her), dictating which of your relationships were acceptable (including in-game interactions, Jesus fucknuts…) and using her jealousy and threats of self-harm to keep your behavior in line. This woman is ten pounds of emotional abuse in a five pound sack and the best thing you can do is run screaming in the other direction.

The only saving grace right now is that you’re learning what an abusive relationship looks like at a relatively safe (for suitably emotionally damaging values of “safe”) distance and that learning this lesson only cost you a couple months. The potential damage she could do to your heart and soul if she had more time or lived in the same town as you is immense.

So here’s what you do: you dump her, cold. No warning, no explanations, no excuses. Any reason you give will just be an opening for her to argue why you’re wrong. You take the Nuclear Option and cut her out of your life entirely—block her in-game, on your phone and on every form of social media you have. Set filters so her email goes straight to the trash and never talk to her again. There is literally nothing to be gained from having her in your life. Excise her from it like a cancerous tumor. You may have thought you were in love. That was hope and inexperience talking, and she was leveraging it against you. That was how she ensured that you wouldn’t enforce your boundaries around her.

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To paraphrase a sage: you may love her, yeah, but you love you more.

You may worry that she’ll hurt herself if you do. Don’t. This is a manipulation tactic that abusers love to exploit. It turns your relationship into a hostage situation, where they’re both the hostage and the hostage taker. She’s not going to do anything and even if she does (SPOILER ALERT: she won’t), that’s not on you. You’re not responsible for her actions, especially the ones she takes to try to manipulate you.

Once she’s gone, you’ll find that a massive weight has been lifted from your shoulders. You’ll realize just how much she was draining the life from you, even from hundreds or thousands of miles away. And once she’s out of your life, you’ll have learned some valuable lessons.

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1) You’ll be better equipped to recognize a toxic relationship before it starts.

2) Next time, you’ll learn to slow your roll before declaring that you love someone just from their online presence.

Good luck.


Did you change your appearance? Were you stuck in an abusive relationship, online or in person? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments, and we’ll be back in two weeks with more of your dating questions.


Ask Dr. Nerdlove is Kotaku’s bi-weekly dating column, hosted by the one and only Harris O’Malley, AKA Dr. NerdLove. Got a question you’d like answered? Write doc@doctornerdlove.com and put “Kotaku” in the subject line.

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Harris O’Malley is a writer and dating coach who provides geek dating advice at his blog Paging Dr. NerdLove and the Dr. NerdLove podcast. His new dating guide New Game+: The Geek’s Guide to Love, Sex and Dating is out now from Amazon, iTunes and everywhere fine books are sold He is also a regular guest at One Of Us.

He can be found dispensing snark and advice on Facebook and on Twitter at @DrNerdLove.