“I’m not here to satisfy you, I’m here to satisfy my community”
Despite setting off a firestorm of controversy among players after earning the ultimate title of “Pirate Legend” last week, Sea of Thieves streamer Robert “Prod1gyX” Paz has nothing but love for the game’s community. That even includes the people who are calling him out under the hashtag #NotMyPirateLegend, criticizing his method of unlocking the special achievement as unskilled and unfair.
“Every game, there’s always going to be the positive and the negative,” Prod1gyX told Polygon in the wake of the backlash, which began after he streamed his lengthy attempt at becoming Pirate Legend. “Sea of Thieves definitely has it. [But] on my side, we keep it positive 100 percent. We don’t bash the game. We don’t talk shit about other streamers.”
Instead, Prod1gyX points to Reddit and social media as the source of the drama. After streaming for days on end his Sea of Thieves quest to reach level 50 across all three of the game’s factions — the requirement to become a Pirate Legend — Prod1gyX found that his view count was growing. Players found out that someone was close to accomplishing the game’s biggest feat and wanted in; yet they quickly turned on the streamer, suggesting he’d only made it that far because of relying on other players for help.
“They started criticizing my gameplay when they heard something about the boosting,” said Prod1gyX, referring to the Redditors and other viewers who besieged his chat during the final hour of his stream. “They just heard ‘boosting,’ and everyone started twisting my words. ‘He boosted all the way,’ and people tweeted at me, ‘Cheater, cheater, not my legend, not my legend.’
“I was like, ‘I don’t understand the hate,’” he said. “‘Do you guys even realize what happened?’” (The clip below shows Prod1gyX talking about his dislike of the Reddit community.)
What happened was that Prod1gyX did get some help from “boosting,” or leaning on other players’ crews to progress further into the game. But the streamer told us that these players willingly allowed him to hop on and take credit for their loot; they were part of his fervent Twitch community, which he’s cultivated over the last eight years.
The supportive nature of this community, as the streamer describes it, was lost on Redditors that jumped in to watch at the tail end of the stream. Seeing other, lower-leveled players carry the weight of someone much more highly ranked stoked their ire — in part due to Prod1gyX admittedly taking a breather right as he headed toward the Pirate Legend quest’s finish line — and launched their anti-streamer backlash.
“People honestly thought that from [reputation level] one to 50, I just got free loot,” he said. “I was AFK, and they were judging just off that. That’s where people took that and made it bigger, way bigger than expected.
“I can tell a lot of people didn’t watch from the beginning, which is understandable. But you can’t say that I wasn’t playing it right from the very beginning of the game.”
Prod1gyX shared stats collected on Reddit that showed just how much of the game he spent boosting through with other players. One user calculated that he’d boosted just under 22 percent of the time, a number he says should prove he played much of the game on his own. Still, his solo accomplishments are lower than the streamer who players are now celebrating as #MyPirateLegend: SniperNamedG. Sniper played for 21 hours straight this past weekend to win the title, and viewers celebrated him for what they considered to be a more legitimate, qualifying run.
Prod1gyX isn’t bitter about Sniper’s more positive reception from the Sea of Thieves player base at large. For him, it’s more about pleasing his own installed community, who he said continue to appreciate him.
“Sniper has more viewers than me and possible a stronger audience, but with my community as well, they make me feel like I’m their Pirate Legend,” he said. “In the beginning, it was strange that people talked that way … [but] my whole plan was to be a Legend and do something awesome with the community.”
Now Prod1gyX spends his time helping other players participate in the unlockable legendary quests, which require a Pirate Legend on board to access. Even with the occasional player bursting into chat to encourage toxic behavior or drop hate speech, the streamer considers himself “beyond blessed.”
Besides, the way he sees it, he’s just playing the game like a true pirate.
“People are like, ‘The game is called Sea of Thieves. It’s about being pirates. What he did was legendary — he had people work for him.’”
Author: #NewsGames polygon.com