Gaming is fun, and gaming with others -- especially friends -- is even more fun. But jumping into a multiplayer game can be intimidating, especially if you don’t know the lingo. If you're an older gamer who isn't fluent in game-talk, or a new gamer dipping your toe into the world of multiplayer gaming, these terms will definitely help you fit in. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of multiplayer gaming terms you should know before you start playing.
P.S Alphabetical order.
Add: Additional computer-controlled enemies that are either summoned or alerted by your intended target or who join the train when you’re attempting to pull. Agro/Aggro: When a creature becomes aggressive and targets a certain player character. Alt: An alternate character in the same game world that’s not used as often as a player’s “main.” Boss: A particularly tough computer-controlled character as compared to the other, weaker enemies in a particular area. Usually found at the end of a level, dungeon or stage. Buff: A beneficial effect or spell that boosts power, statistics or effectiveness. Button Mashing: Often used when describing fighting games, button mashing is spamming input by hitting buttons rapidly and randomly because you don’t know the specific moves of a character. Button mashing often makes fighting game purists angry, especially when they are defeated by a button masher.
Camp/Camping: Staying in one place, usually difficult to detect, and sniping or ganking other players with relative ease without having to run around the map. In MMO games, camping is sometimes used to refer to players waiting for specific content to spawn. Camper: A player that camps. Caster: A magic-using class that casts spells. Class: The primary focus, skillset or profession of a character. Examples include warrior, medic, engineer, soldier and wizard. Cooldown: Time needed before a power, effect, spell or skill can be used again. Crafting: Creating items such as weapons, armor or potions using resources found in the game world or by combining other items. Crossplay: Ability to play the same game over multiple platforms, such as PC, console and mobile.
Debuff: To cancel or counteract a buff. Also used to refer to powers that weaken other characters or items in game.
Ding: Often said to indicate a new level has been reached. Named because it mimics the sound of a bell.
Frag: To kill another player.
Gank: Unexpectedly killed by another player without provocation. Gib: To kill someone is such a dramatic fashion that they disintegrate into messy meat chunks. Short for “giblets.”
Griefer: A player who consistently and purposely irritates and angers other players. The game equivalent to an online troll. Grind: Repeating the same basic task over and over and over in order to gain experience and gain levels. Kite: Getting a computer-controlled character to follow you. Often used to stay out of harm’s way while using ranged attacks to slowly take down an opponent.
Lag: The amount of time between input from the player’s controller and when the action is seen on screen.
Latency: Similar to lag, but relates more to technical aspects of data transfer. Latency is how long it takes for data to travel. High latency can cause lag.
Level: A measure of ability, power and overall strength in a game usually represented by an ascending number. Characters are often awarded additional skills, abilities and other perks when they gain levels. Loadout: What useable items or powers a character has equipped and ready to use. Loot: Treasure, items, rewards and goodies either found in the game world or dropped by enemies after they’re killed. “Phat Loot” is considered particularly rare or powerful.
Newb/newbie/noob/n00b: A usually derogatory term used to denote a player who is new and doesn’t know all the strategies and intricacies of a particular game.
Ninja Looting: Taking items or drops from a mob out of turn or when you don’t deserve the spoils. Own/Ownd/Owned: To kill or show up another player. Often spelled as “Pwn” or “Pwnd.” Party: A group of gamers with which you cooperatively play.
Ping: Ping is a way to verify connectivity as well as measure latency between two points. Acronym for Packet InterNet Groper.
Rek/Rekt: To utterly destroy. Misspelling of “wrecked.”
Spawn/Respawn: Resurrection in the game world after being killed. Spawn Point: The place where players or computer-controlled enemies appear once they start the game or after dying.
Strafe: To move from side to side in an effort to avoid attacks. Circle strafing is an advanced tactic where players move around opponents in a circle focusing attacks while attempting to avoid direct, head-on engagement. Tank: The beefiest character in a party who can absorb the most amount of damage. Usually used to keep aggro while the other character pummel the distracted enemy.
Train: A large group of baddies (often accidentally) pulled when you only meant to target a few. Zerg Rush/Zergling Rush: A tactical move using many low-cost, low-power units to overrun an opponent who may have more powerful, but fewer units who can’t keep up with the onslaught. Derived from the StarCraft Zerg, an insect-like race who produced many, low-cost offspring.
Zone: A specific section or area of an online game world.
New gaming terms are invented every day as games become more and more complex. Keeping up with terms in gaming culture can be a difficult and often unnecessary task, more so if you play without a headset.
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