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A solution to toxic VOIP: Limit proximity VOIP to squad-mates only


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From the last TarkovTV stream, Nikita opened up a bit more about his reservations on including "open" proximity VOIP. He is concerned -- and perhaps rightly so -- that it will allow for very toxic behavior between unrelated players on a server (spamming music, offensive speeches, etc). 

In response, I want to offer another options for BSG to consider:

###Why not limit spatial VOIP to squad-mates? 

This is how games like Squad and Arma's Task-Force-Radio/Acre mods approach it, and IMO, there are many good things that can come from this.

A sense of depth and position

Rather than hear all your teammate's chatter in a "flat" non-spatial way in Discord/etc, proximity VOIP would give a greater sense of depth and direction among teammates. 

Teammate identification

Currently, finding out which player is who involves a myriad of ritual procedures that may include a combination of wiggle, jumping up and down, forming gymnastic pyramids, teamkilling with grenades, or attempting "Blue Steel" impersonations with head movements.

This song-and-dance would be easily avoided by simply being able to HEAR the position of each player's voice. 

For example: 

  • Rob, where are you?
  • I'm right here (as the voice CLEARLY comes from over your right shoulder)

These same benefits would extend to firefights. With proximity VOIP among your squad-mates, you'll have a better of sense of where everyone is located during high intensity moments.

Cleaning up unrelated radio traffic

Proximity VOIP between teammates also has the MAJOR benefit of allowing nearby teammates to talk to one another without polluting the coms for everyone else. 

If I'm clearing a building with a battle-buddy, the last thing I want to start hearing in my headset is talk that is unrelated to our immediate situation. 

  • "Quiet coms, I'm trying to hear!" 
  • Well, what if the other group needs to talk about something pertinent to them? They can't do so without "stepping" on the request for radio silence. 

Allowing both groups to carry on separate conversations through proximity VOIP will remedy this situation as well.

Quick and easy "recourse" for offenders

Someone still being a jerk and ruining the EFT experience? Chances are, you don't want to be playing with this person anymore anyway, and removing them from your team prevents them from spamming your proximity VOIP coms.

In closing

Having team-base proximity VOIP would largely "solve" the initial concerns of toxic spatial VOIP and would represent a HUGE step forward in teamplay. It would also complement the upcoming addition of radios as well, as both communication options could be seamlessly used by teammates. Proximity VOIP for teammates nearby, radios for squadmates not within earshot or who have broken off into a separate fireteam.

So please, BSG, before you throw the baby out with the bathwater and say no to all VOIP implementations, please consider limiting it to squad-mates only.

#Thank you for being so involved with the community, keep rocking on, we support you!

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As a quick follow-up...

In a perfect world, EFT would have "open" proximity VOIP, letting unrelated players communicate directly with their voices (ie random player scavs teaming up, separate PMC squads working together, etc).  

Allowing players to overhear talk from nearby enemies is also what would make for situations shown in the EFT trailer and Raid videos. Notice how everyone stops and stacks up for entry whenever they hear the PMC's talking here: 


Fully open proximity VOIP would allow for these types of things to happen in the game as well.

From Nikita's recent comments on the matter, "fully open" proximity VOIP seems to be a no-go. At least in their current thinking.

Rather than say NO to any sort of spatial VOIP entirely, I'm suggesting they consider it as a "squad-mates only" feature because, even in a limited fashion, there's still a LOT of great things that it would add to the game.

Edited by Spectator6
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