What makes multiplayer good? The game or the people?

This topic has been on my mind for the past couple weeks as I’ve been finding it harder than usual to actually enjoy a game that has multiplayer, specifically a game that has multiplayer separate from the actual game itself. This made me wonder, was the multiplayer in a game good because it was just good and super addictive, or was it good because of the people I was playing with. There are a bunch of games with multiplayer outside of the single player that I just for some reason cannot get into, for example there’s Call of Duty, Watch_Dogs, some Uncharted games, and Grand Theft Auto just to name a few. Then on the other hand there are games that have multiplayer outside of the actual game that I can totally get into and spend hours upon hours playing. For example my biggest one is probably Mass Effect 3. I thought this would continue with the release of Mass Effect: Andromeda, but it hasn’t actually and it’s been quite the opposite which brought this question up in the first place.

Before having my established group for Mass Effect 3 multiplayer I would say that I probably spent around 4-5 hours a day playing the multiplayer depending on how it was going. Were most of the matches a win with full extraction? Were the random people I was playing with any good? Was I happy with the overall quality of experience I was having? Don’t get me wrong, the multiplayer for this game was good, I mean I was spending quite a bit of time playing it, but I was also dividing up my time playing the single player which of course was my favorite. Then things kind of changed when I found a group of people to play with.

When I found a group of people to play with my game time went from about 4-5 hours a day up to 8-10 hours per day. Crazy right? While we didn’t always have a group of 4 people, there were always about 2-3 of us playing at one time and then with some random person filling the missing void, who probably thought were absolutely insane, that would come and go as they please. This was totally fine with us. There obviously had to be some correlation between playing alone and then playing with a group of people right? I mean look how much my playtime went up and basically doubled.

Cut to five years later with the release of Mass Effect: Andromeda and I’ve barely scratched the surface of the multiplayer. As you can probably already tell, my group has disbursed to where there’s just one or two of us left. Not to mention that the overall gameplay of the multiplayer has changed drastically. There are a lot of things that come in the play with his new game as I’ve spent maybe a total of 10 hours outside of the single player playing the multiplayer. Not yet having the chance to play with my little group that’s left, I really don’t know if my obvious lack of interest in the multiplayer is because of the fact that I don’t like playing with the random people that I’ve encountered or that the game itself really isn’t that great.

In conclusion, I’ve kind of come to the realization that even though the multiplayer for Mass Effect: Andromeda isn’t what I was expecting, which was something much similar to Mass Effect 3. I mean if you think about it, the multiplayer for Mass Effect 3 was a huge success so they didn’t have to reinvent the wheel as much as they did. I think that what’s holding me off from playing as much Mass Effect: Andromeda multiplayer is a combination of both actually. I do miss my group of friends that I always played with, and the game itself just changed way too much to even be similar to the previous game. When it comes down to it I think that for a multiplayer game that’s outside of the single player game to be good it has to have a combination of both. You need a group of people who you actually like playing with and the game itself needs to be decent.

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