After the rather dubious E3 media briefing last month, those who visited the official Xbox website saw a letter from Microsoft’s Marc Whitten revealing a new item for the upcoming Xbox One “designed to improve matchmaking and weeding out people who don’t play fair,” known as the “Reputation” system.
“Your new Xbox Live Reputation plays a prominent and valuable role rewarding healthy participation while reducing troublemakers and cheaters. A unified system across Xbox Live and all of your games allows for you to have much more control over who you play with while giving you new and exciting ways to get even move involved in your community.”
Your reputation will also play a factor when it comes to matchmaking, with Whitten saying that “‘Smart Match’ expands options for game creators to match players based on skill, language, and (now) reputation.”
WHAT DOES THIS MEEEEAN?
First of all, throttle down. Second of all, it’s good news for those who are tired of spawn killers and being called (or hearing) n-bomb, f-bomb, the OTHER “f-bomb” or horrendous sexist comments based on if you have a p or v.
Once your reputation is out there for the world (and Xbox One) to see, players will find themselves playing with those with similar “reputations” – meaning the obnoxious, foul-mouthed jerks will be culled from the herd and forced to play with each other in a sort of “A-hole exile.” YAY!
In a recent interview with OXM, Microsoft’s senior product manager Mike Lavin said that “there’ll be very good things that happen to people that just play their games and are good participants. And you’ll start to see some effects if you continue to play bad or, or harass other people en masse. You’ll probably end up starting to play more with other people that are more similar to you.”
Did I also mention that your reputation will be on full display alongside your gamerscore? Yeah, that’s happening and I say “GOOD,” because when you’re suspended on Xbox, the WHOLE world knows it: when your gamertag shows up on your friends’ lists, your motto AND bio are replaced with a “Code Of Conduct,” as if the shame of being suspended isn’t enough.
HOWEVER, Lavin wanted to make one point sparkling; player haters CANNOT sabotage your reputation score (if you’re innocent). “The way that it’s built fundamentally stops that, it’s very much over a period of time. If we see consistently that people, for instance, don’t like playing with you, that you’re consistently blocked, that you’re the subject of enforcement actions because you’re sending naked pictures of yourself to people that don’t want naked pictures of you…. Blatant things like that have the ability to quickly reduce your Reputation score.”
Lavin also says that with the Xbox One, Microsoft is planning to target good behavior with events and activities that’ll help improve your reputation as well as strengthen the good reputation scores already achieved.
This is all great in theory and looks GREAT on paper but I’ll reserve further judgment until I see in action…that’s IF I even decide to buy an Xbox One, that is.
Xbox One is expected to hit shelves November 2013.
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