Camping (gaming)

In video gaming, camping is a controversial tactic where a player obtains a static strategic position of advantage. This behavior manifests in different ways depending on the type of game (online text adventure, graphical MMO, first-person shooter, etc.), but invariably involves a player waiting in one location for the game (or other players of the game) to do something which they can take advantage of, often repeatedly. By camping, a player is able to learn and adapt to the limited environment he/she is playing in; noting specific points to check repetitively. By following this method with little fault, a lower number of deaths can be achieved.[1][2]

Camping is often seen as a method for circumventing much of the effort usually required to acquire a desired reward makes the activity contentious. Among many players, camping is considered very similar to cheating, especially in deathmatch-type first-person shooter games.[3] The most common reason for this is that if every player camps, there will be no opportunities for players to come into conflict, and thus there will be no game at all.

Multiple players camping in mutually supportive positions is referred to in some game types as turtling.

Camping in first-person shooters

Camping often provides a clear field of view over a choke point or position of tactical interest whilst retaining cover for the camper. This tactic allows one player to easily pick off any opponent that comes into sight without giving them any indicator of his/her presence in the area. It differs from holding a strategic position by its requisite static nature and intensive cover. More experienced players are sometimes "semimobile campers/snipers" that leave boobytraps and relocate after 1-3 kills to prevent retaliation.

It often proves frustrating, particularly to newer players, as it rewards those who invest a considerable amount of time in the game (which allows them to know the layout of the maps and the best defensive positions); as well as those with accurate aim.

In most deathmatch-type games that have both a time limit and a kill limit, camping can be used to take advantage of the time limit rather than the kill limit. Capture the flag and its variants provide an incentive to invade enemy territory, regardless of the risk, since scoring flags is more important than scoring by killing the opposing team's players; conversely, this mode also encourages players to camp their own vulnerable flag to defend against the anticipated stream of attackers. However, even in such games, some players may choose to camp to give covering fire for other team members attempting to grab the flag and run back with it.

It is most common in first-person shooters when a player hides in a single location which serves as a tactical advantage over the opposing player(s) for long periods of time. The position chosen is normally secluded from casual view and maybe partially secured at least on one side by any object. The location is then used to create an ambush. The period of time a camping player spends in the specific location may vary as the player reacts to game conditions. Some games will discourage camping by nagging players who remain stationary for a time to move on, or applying harsher penalties to alleged campers such as small amounts of periodic damage (which, if ignored, will eventually kill the player and force him to respawn elsewhere).

In some games such as Blacklight: Retribution, players are given a way to combat camping. All players in Blacklight: Retribution have what is known as a 'Hyper-Reality Visor' (HRV)[4][5] which enables them to see, among other things, players through walls. Usage of the HRV is limited and players cannot use their weapons when it is engaged. This feature allows players to know where possible campers are and allows for faster gameplay. The HRV can be combated by certain equippable items however, such as a mine that disables the highlighting in the HRV.

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