Home Editorial The Sound of Silence

I’m always amazed by the number of people playing shooters while blasting music, talking on the phone, or using the tinny Dell speakers that came with their computer. Sure, you can see the bad guys. But you can’t hear anything. At least, anything of importance. Like people trying to put holes in you.

Now, don’t get me wrong; I understand not everyone is really playing all that seriously. Either that or they just really, really want to listen to Tik Tok for the 400,000th time. But it’s the small fraction of people who are basically playing deaf and simultaneously complaining about “hacking” or “team balance” that’s ridiculous.

“How did you know I was there?” “BULLSHIT!” “This guy is wallhacking”

I don’t think the value of a good set of surround sound headphones can be overstated for any game in which you need to kill people before they can do the same to you. Almost every FPS game made in the past 10 years features footsteps, or equipment rattle, and being able to hear that and guess the opponent’s position before line of sight means you’ve got the jump on him every time. Being able to stop for a second, concentrate on what you hear, then chuck a nade “somewhere over there” and watching the points stack up is immensely satisfying. I’m sure this chap would agree:

Besides, it doesn’t hurt that music, sound effects, and voice all come through clearer when they’re not being bounced off your room’s walls 8 times before smacking you on the eardrum.

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