Amazon wants to force toxic gamers to play together

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(Pocket-lint) – Amazon has filed an interesting patent for a technology that would group toxic gamers together on the same multiplayer server.  Essentially forcing toxic players to play together and thereby improving the game for everyone else. 

The patent was originally filed back in 2017 but has since been approved by the US Patent and Trademark Office. It details how traditional matchmaking systems for online multiplayer games tend to focus on skill-based groupings. In other words, putting players together who have similar skill levels so gameplay is enjoyable and not one-sided. 

However, the patent suggests that this classic matchmaking logic doesn’t necessarily result in player enjoyment:

“While players may enjoy competing with others of a similar skill level, such systems naively assume that skill is the primary or only factor to players’ enjoyment. Contrary to this assumption, players’ enjoyment may depend heavily based on behaviours of other users with which they are paired, such as proclivity of other players to use profanity or engage in other undesirable behaviours.”

The suggestion is then to isolate all “toxic” players into a separate player pool and then ensure that toxic players are only paired with one another.

Of course, even the concept of “toxic” is a subjective idea. One player may be happy to put up with bad language but may view other in-game actions – such as leaving the game early – as far more toxic. Another player might not mind actions, but hate putting up with swearing and trolling. 

The proposed system, therefore, suggests allowing players to vote on what is toxic and set up preferences for what they find acceptable or otherwise. 

It’s certainly an interesting concept. Whether Amazon will implement it or where we’d be likely to see it are unclear at this point, but the idea of having friendly online lobbies is certainly an appealing one. 

Writing by Adrian Willings.


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