As anyone who regularly plays multiplayer games can attest, trolls and trolls are very common. Moderation efforts are failing across the medium. It is something that is acknowledged by Sony in a recently published patent that describes how “managing disruptive players in video games is not currently as well implemented as possible.” The patent goes on to describe a system for more robustly recognizing, processing, and tracking “disruptive behavior” in multiplayer games. It has the potential to be a system that can be integrated into PlayStation game in the future.
The patent describes a complex automated system for multiplayer game. The system starts by identifying disruptive in-game events as they happen, or even predicting the likelihood of disruptive events in preparation to track them down as they happen. After a disruptive event, the system records the player responsible and collects evidence of that event. It also generates real-time behavioral data, which is then shown back to players during a match or game.
Just to be clear, this is an automated system that runs continuously. It is not only capable of tracking disruptive behavior, flagging and reporting it, but also for tracking good behavior. In fact, the system even assigns a “Behavior Score” to the player, which doesn’t just take into account disruptive behavior but can also be assigned to “Behavioral Markers” for positive interactions.
While it may seem like the system is simply designed to allow existing moderation efforts to become more effective, allowing them to more proactively track disruptive players, it’s more than that. again. The system’s demographic data may also be used for automatic matchmakingby calculating the likelihood of disruptive behavior based on the players in a match. That way, the matchmaking system can potentially disperse disruptive players in a way that minimizes the likelihood of disruptive events.
What makes Sony’s patent stand out is that it acknowledges the failures of current efforts. Current moderation efforts are very resource-intensive, which requires large teams to parse through collected data and evidence inefficiently. These agents and customer service operators are not in the game when disruptive events occur. They rely on automated systems or player reports to make decisions. The stronger the automated system, the easier it is to deal with disruptive events and players.
Obviously, there is a deeper question worth asking here. While little PlayStation players, or any player for that matter, would disagree that more needs to be done to track down and punish disruptive players, they might balk at the idea of Sony keeping behavior points based on their account. At the moment, this is just a patented idea by Sony. But it will be interesting to see if this idea comes to fruition in PlayStation game in the future.
With the Game Awards naming the winners of the latest Game of the Year, it’s worth looking back at every single game that has received the award since the inception of the TGA.
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https://gamerant.com/playstation-patent-detect-trolls-disruptive-players-multiplayer-games/ PlayStation patented automated system to detect cheaters and disruptive players in multiplayer games