Playing online with others has become more mainstream and accessible to people. It’s a great way to hang out with friends, especially while being cooped up during the pandemic, or even find new friends to play with. In-game matchmaking mechanics often consider the experience (level) of players, but they rarely involve matching non-toxic players with potential friends that are also non-toxic. But anyone who has played an online multiplayer game would have at least one bad run-in with a toxic player. This is as important for casual gamers as it is for esports professionals and video game athletes in training.
Back then, if you’ve physically been to a computer gaming café that has a bunch of teens screaming their lungs out during a session of Dota or Counter-Strike, you’d know what I mean. For games like CS:GO you have the Trust Factor which could be considered but of course, it’s only one aspect to consider. In this case, it would be good to have a high Trust Factor. These days, you’ll find the toxicity in messaging and in-voice chat during an online game like Fortnite or Call of Duty. Gamers are constantly met with offensive comments such as racial slurs and homophobic language, and it pushes people away from just having fun.
It’s unfortunate, but the online gaming community is notorious for fostering toxic in-game experiences. One moment, you’re having a good time; the next, you’re being blasted with offensive comments. Of course, there are companies out there that want to fix this problem. One of them is eBlitz, a matchmaking app for gamers to avoid playing with unreliable and toxic players.
Find other players to game with instantly
While there are a lot of matchmaking apps out there, one of the things that eBlitz wants to do that set it apart from the rest is to help people match and play instantly. The way it works is you create a profile, pick out five of your favorite games from the app’s list, and set your gaming schedule. After that, you can start matching and playing with other users. You can also instantly communicate with others through the text chat function or the Discord voice integration.
I had a chance to have a chat with eBlitz’s Head of Growth, Robert Elden, and he said that 70% of their users were inclined to choose a game to play after getting matched with a new friend. Compared to other matchmaking apps, their platform allows people to spontaneously pick out what they want to play. You can choose to message those you’ve matched with and invite them for a game immediately.
The app is console agnostic, meaning that it shouldn’t matter if you’re playing on a console, smartphone, or PC. It also lists down a good variety of games to choose as your favorite game, ranging from Overcooked to World of Warcraft, but at the moment, eBlitz is focusing on Fortnite. Apart from the number of users playing the game, Elden explains that it also “has a rich external developer community that gives us flexibility.” As a result, things like game stats from playing Fortnite can be seen within a user’s profile.
Gaming in a safe space
eBlitz is pretty straightforward and easy to use, but you might be wondering what it actually does to curb toxic gaming culture. Once you start exploring, you can see other users from around the world along with the ratings they get from other users who’ve played with them. The highest you can give anyone is five stars, meaning that they’re great to play with; of course, a one-star means that you’re probably better off playing with someone else. Much like Tinder, you can either swipe left or right; once you do swipe someone and they did the same on their end, you’ll be matched with them.
The information you provide in eBlitz also informs their algorithm on who you could pair with. Elden shared that toxic behavior can come from something as simple as a difference in language, age gap, and even how casual or hardcore a gamer is. They aim to eliminate these factors and hopefully reduce any toxicity that can happen during a game. At the moment, the app is not region-locked, so it’s great to have a chance to play with someone on another continent, but Elden also mentioned that they would “continue to observe closely and adjust as we go.”
Of course, bad behavior can appear even during an initial contact through chat. With the app, players who are unfortunately paired up with a toxic user can simply disconnect from them instead of playing through a whole session. Apart from that, Elden shares that eBlitz is also developing an assistance feature that can “potentially warn toxic behavior before it is displayed to the victim, and allow the victim to walk away with one tap without suffering.”
Future plans for eBlitz
So far, eBlitz has garnered more than 100k downloads in four months and is expected to grow in the future with plans of having community events, game-specific challenges, and of course, bringing in more games into the fold. At the moment, they are looking into bringing more games into the fold like Call of Duty, PUBG, CS:GO, and League of Legends, just to name a few.
Elden adds that they are also continuously finding ways how to protect gamers, especially young kids, by “actively participating in discussions around online safety and toxicity.” eBlitz might be still new. Still, it is interesting how they will move forward with their goal to lessen toxic gaming culture. For now, you can try it for yourself on Android and iOS.
YouTube: eBlitz Explainer Trailer – Match With Reliable Online Players, In Seconds
Photo credit: The feature image has been done by Stock Photo Pro. The images in the body of the article are owned by eBlitz and have been provided for press usage.
Editorial notice: The interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.