Thank You For Your Co-operation

ED209 - this is what happens when you mate a Scout Walker with a pin cushion

Robocop rocked, pretty much… I mean he kicked ED209′s arse without breaking a Castrol GTX sweat. Unfortunately, this article isn’t going to be me gushing about how cool it would be to have all your limbs blown off and replaced with shiny machinery which, as fantastic as it sounds, has its downsides such as becoming no more than a torso when you have to make your way through airport security. No, I’m talking about how quickly someone can change their attitude towards a particular style of gameplay; how one small, seemingly insignificant, moment can turn an entire way of life on its head. The change for me occurred when Lee decided that it was about time we launched the GL Gaming Night on Wednesday evenings and I figured I should set aside my loathing for multiplayer gaming and at least show face on that first night – I mean, what sort of Head Honcho would I be if I didn’t actively participate in the community?

The decision was made that the first game would be Red Dead Redemption, for two reasons. The first is that it can hold more co-op players than most without any real noticeable lag, ideal for a bunch of relative strangers who don’t particularly want to spend their first hours getting to know one another amidst a barrage of swearing, unless it’s directed at each other for… perhaps throwing dynamite at their opponent. Regularly. The second reason is that you get to ride around on a horse and shoot people in the face, which is something I personally can’t get enough of even though it tends to be my face receiving the barrage of rounds.

The result of that first GL Gaming Night session was that it brought several of our Twitter followers and forum members closer together with each other, as well as with the writers. As the proverbial shy and retiring type, I expected to be sitting in my dark corner, hunched over my controller wishing that the other people would just go away and leave me alone to do my own thing at my own pace yet it was, to all intents and purposes, the opposite of what I had imagined. From the point where everyone started to file in to the game I was, to my surprise and delight, particularly vocal and keen to engage myself in conversation with this fresh new blood… blood which would, with any luck, be spilled across the dusty landscape as a result of my being a crack shot with my boomstick.

Like any great gig, the residual feeling after the game was a buzz of sheer excitement from everyone involved, eager to get back in the saddle for the following week… assuming the game of choice for the following week would be Red Dead Redemption. It was, and this particular evening we had even more gamers join from the community but this time it was different… this time it was tougher. The first hour and a half or so consisted of my being killed within seconds of respawning from the last kill and, no matter what I did to avoid this, it continued to happen until the point where I actually stopped my Groundhog Day pattern of respawning and frantically searching for a decent weapon and/or a place to hide while I selected my weapon of choice. Instead, through a mixture of apathy and a strong sense of defeatism from being a “level minus one million” character surrounded by “level god” players, I decided to take the other route… to go from being the guy running around mental to being the invisible man.

For more than an hour my gameplay consisted of slowly walking through the mayhem, going largely unnoticed by the other players running to and fro, with a leisurely kill here and a well aimed headshot there. Finally, I was being afforded the pleasure of legitimate participation… presumably because I was moving too slowly for anyone to actually notice. From their point of view, I probably wasn’t much of a target as I had temporarily taken on the role of sitting duck but to me… as the cameraman behind my character… it was cinematic brilliance and it more than made up for the first ninety minutes of being a chew toy.

I discovered that the best way to stay alive in Red Dead Redemption is to go for a leisurely stroll rather than run around!

On the following Gaming Night the game of choice was Burnout Paradise and, to my surprise, we quickly filled an eight player session with writers, forum goers and twitter followers. It was, as any Burnout Session tends to be, utter chaos with everyone asking everyone else where the hell they were supposed to be going and, in some cases, what we were supposed to do once we got there. Yes folks, even the huge ticker tape announcement at the bottom of the screen fades into oblivion when you’re trying to avoid being taken down by a tiny pink car by the name of Peggles. A bunch of us had tried to arrange eight player Burnout sessions the previous year to try and help each other pick up achievements but, more often than not, we would either max out around six or we’d only have eight players for five minutes or so before someone invariably had to leave to feed the fish. This time it was different, this time we immediately had eight people laughing their arses off as well as screaming profanities at each other for jumping in front as they attempted a challenge only to be knocked into a wall for immediate failure.

Soul destroying, infuriating… magical.

Perhaps the only driving game I'll ever be able to play!

To my surprise, I couldn’t get enough of this new found multiplayer adrenalin flow and the next day I found myself craving yet another co-op session with some of the writers and community and, as it turns out, I wasn’t alone. No sooner had I mentioned my lust than an impromptu Burnout session was arranged for that very night thanks to the wonders of t’internet and a bunch of people who apparently live on! As expected, it was a blast but after the party ended and that hand reached out for that custom built Hollywood “one lever to shut everything down” handle, grabbed hold of it and pushed down hard, the itch kicked in once more. Since then I’ve been taking part in four player co-op sessions in Borderlands to help myself and others out with maxing the game to 100%, and plan to expand my gaming horizons to the point where I’ll be able to take part in Halo, Bad Company 2, Left4Dead and other oft-played multiplayer games.

Until such times, I’ll continue to play the lone maverick and wage my own wars, ensuring I give everyone the customary twenty seconds to comply.

Last five articles by Mark R



  1. Samuel Samuel says:

    I’m thinking I may have to get over my thing with Halo. The one that says “all PC shooters are more technically accomplished, and easier to control with a mouse.” Because you just KNOW that Halo Reach is going to be the next big thing for our Wednesday night sessions…

    And I’ve been just as surprised as you to discover that I really enjoy those sessions, when normally I’d rather play a single-player. Must be all the filthy profanity… we’re a coarse bunch of deviants judging from the audio evidence of those sessions, heh heh.

    Good article dood.

  2. Kat says:

    I love gaming nights! Most of mine are impromptu depending on who’s online but it’s great to know that there will definitely be death and bloodshed on a certain night with certain people. I’m a HUGE fan of multiplayer, especially with folk who will banter and play for fun and almost everytime I play something it will make me cry with laughter or force me to mute my mic so others aren’t deafened by my giggles.

    Both RDR and Burnout Paradise are great games for general arsing about. Others such as BC2 or L4D require a bit more attention and effort with teamwork so are a different sort of experience. I do recommend L4D2 firstly as it’s such a good game that it should be experienced but also for the teamwork aspect. You truly are reliant on each other and it’s so rewarding when… if, you all make to to the saferoom together. There are still laughs along the way either out of sheer desperation at the situation or because some wally accidentally lobbed a molotov in the way :/ etc.

    I also think there will be a lot of fun had with Halo Reach when it comes out. The different multiplayer modes in the beta alone were fun/annoyingly infuriating :D plus, it has jetpacks and those alone sold it to me.

    Anyway, it’s nearly 5am and there’s a risk of me banging on for ages here. The games nights have been great fun and introduced me to more gamers which is only a good thing! Long may they continue!

  3. Richie richie says:

    Sounds like fun. I’ll wait for Two Worlds 2 as RDR doesn’t really appeal to me.

  4. Victor Victor says:

    I…, NEED…, to…, take…, part!

    Let’s see, Burnout Paradise I have. I shall have to pick up some other popular games to play with you guys. And send the girlfriend off to bed much earlier. But I will be there. I remember playing a game with Libi some time ago. And to my utter displeasure, she has morphed from a walking target into an angel of death. My skills are eroding.


  5. Lee says:

    how come im on both sides for that video?

    gamenight is a good laugh, I look forward to it every week even if Ben is a pain in the ass ninja cowboy.

    you should of done a version of that video where its just you getting killed, over and over and over.

    goodtimes :D

  6. Edward Edward says:

    Yet another compelling reason I should get Red Dead Redemption.

    This was as hilarious to read as it was awesome, and I’m glad Gaminglives is helping you to become more multiplayer minded.

    As always, another fascinating read from you, Markuz :D

  7. Mark Mark S says:

    Game nights are brilliant. Always such a good laugh. I enjoy RDR and Burnout, but we need to get into some other games i think. Halo or L4D are good options, but there are so many decent multiplayer games out there.

    As ever, shooting you guys or hitting you with my car, is always a fun time. :D

  8. Lorna Lorna says:

    Splitter! Dibs on your dark corner which, when added to mine, gives me the whole side! I’m a ‘bah humbug’ type of gamer when it comes to multiplayer, though despite my dread, once I’m involved, I usually have a good time.

    I haven’t yet played RDR on single player, so haven’t even dared touch it on multiplayer. By the time I do, everyone will be level one million. I suppose I have never got that much involved before was because I dislike random games and never really had a pool of folk to play with. Also, many multiplayer games are shooters which leave me cold….that said though, Kat puts up a pretty convincing argument for Left 4 Dead 2 and Borderlands co-op looks mental.

  9. Michael Author says:

    What I didn’t like about this article was the video…
    Everytime I was in it, it was ‘someone killed Teh Author’, ‘someone decapitated Teh Author’, and so on…
    I think the only good thing that involved me was ‘Teh Author captured the bag’ right at the end…

  10. Rook says:

    Hmmmm, multiplayer games tend to want you to be socialable and I’m not usually that way inclined. :D I’ve joined a few multiplayer games but only Burnout with the GL group. I have to complete a game single player before I will even think about multiplayer (I’m weird that way).

    Depending on what other games are on offer for game night, I may have to join in and utter a word every fifteen minutes or so. :)

  11. Mark R MarkuzR says:

    Lee… When I saw how many times I was being killed, I thought it’d be a great montage to create… alas it was hard enough work to sift through 3.5 hours of footage just for a two minute montage and took me from midnight until, I think it was around 4.30am? Kat and Samuel will know better as I wasn’t paying much attention to the time. It was late, let’s just say that!!

    I’m already looking forward to next week’s session… then a great weekend with a great bunch of gamers and friends.

    And Kat x

  12. Samuel Samuel says:

    I think it was 4 in the morning when you published this. Must have been, because we were talking for an hour after, and you went offline at 5. Heh.

  13. Mark R MarkuzR says:

    Yeah, both you and Kat were helping me to run through the text as I could hardly see… early night for me tonight!

  14. Ben Ben says:

    Awesome fun is Red Dead on multiplayer, often quite hilarious especially when you add a cannon and Lee to the map :D

  15. Kat says:

    Lorna, you have to get L4D2. It has zombies! Plus it’s not sociable as such because you have to be talking about what’s happening in the game and listening out for teammates in trouble.

    Van would be flippin hilarious in RDR. I can’t wait for him to eventually pick it up :D

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