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Unlock the World of Gaming: 30 Essential Terms Every Gamer Should Know

Dive into the immersive world of gaming with this comprehensive glossary! Learn the lingo, from 'loot' to 'no scope,' and connect with gamers easily.
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The video game industry, a world with its own language

By gradually establishing itself in our daily lives since the marketing of Pong in November 1972, the video game has not only created a cultural identity but also its own vocabulary, encompassing a set of formulas, expressions, and acronyms. A rich, diverse lexicon that evolves with technological advances and the emergence of new genres or new gaming practices.

Unlock the World of Gaming: 30 Essential Terms Every Gamer Should Know

But for a neophyte, whom an experienced player would readily describe as a noob or casu, it is not necessarily easy to grasp the meaning of anglicisms or acronyms, which are nevertheless, and sometimes for several decades, widely adopted by the video game industry and gaming communities. But then, what do terms like L2Ptheorycraft, or vaporware mean? Explanation of text for newbiesGLHF .

30 words frequently used in the world of video games

  1. AAA, pronounced "triple-A,"  defines a game that requires significant financial resources, both for its development and for its promotion. According to Le Monde, the origin of the term is attributable to publishers, who are in the habit of granting an A, B, or AAA rating to their productions. Grand Theft Auto V, Assassin's Creed Valhalla, or Call of Duty Modern Warfare III are, for example, considered AAA games.
  2. Abandonware, or abandogiciel in French, designates a game that is no longer updated or marketed by its publisher and which can, sometimes, be offered for free download by third parties. According to Abandonware France, this is an “illegal but tolerated” practice.
  3. AFK: corresponds to “Away from Keyboard,"  which can be translated as “distant from the keyboard." . The use of this acronym indicates a temporary absence or inactivity.
  4. Bestiary: This is a collection listing all the creatures or monsters present in the virtual universe, as well as their detailed characteristics.
  5. Bot: designates a non-player character (see below) controlled by the computer, which is programmed to simulate our in-game behavior. He can carry out certain tasks, either in collaboration with the player or by facing him as an opponent.
  6. Bullet time: inspired by Hong Kong cinema—and not by The Matrix—this visual effect slows down the projectiles on the screen so that the player can visualize their trajectory. Bullet Time was democratized in the video game industry by the first opus of the Max Payne series.
  7. Bundle: can designate a bundle of games or a title marketed with additional accessories.
  8. Casu is short for casual gamer, literally meaning casual gamer. The term is sometimes used pejoratively to classify players who naturally gravitate towards accessible titles with a fairly low difficulty curve or who favor fun to the detriment of progression.
  9. Crunch: corresponds to a period of intensive work before the marketing of a game. The culture of crunch in the industry, which aims to meet deadlines to the detriment of the well-being of employees, has been widely criticized by the media and the gaming communities on social networks in recent years. Many studios have been particularly singled out, such as Rockstar Games in the United States or Quantic Dream in France.
  10. DLC: for downloadable content, it designates content that has been developed in addition to the game and that may provide new quests and missions, as well as additional equipment. And potentially pay off!
  11. DPS: widely used in esports, this acronym means “damage per second” in French. It corresponds to the volume of damage that can be inflicted by a character each second. DPS can also be used to refer to a character whose primary objective is to inflict damage on opponents.
  12. Easter egg: designates a function or hidden element of the game, inserted voluntarily by the developers but whose existence has not been documented. This “Easter egg” can refer, for example, to another cultural work in the form of a little wink.
  13. Farming corresponds to a practice repeated tirelessly by the player in order to facilitate their progress throughout the game. The farming process often allows you to obtain virtual currency, experience points, or even items.
  14. F2P, for "free-to-play,"  corresponds to an economic model of the video game industry that offers the player the possibility of free access to a significant portion of a game. Additional elements (cosmetics or boosts facilitating progress) can, however, be purchased. League of Legends is, for example, a free-to-play game.
  15. GG means “good game” in English, which can be literally translated as “well played." This acronym is used as a courtesy. It allows you to recognize a successful action or congratulate the opposing team at the end of the game.
  16. Glitch: designates an anomaly integrated unintentionally and which can be exploited either to cheat or to advance more quickly in the game.
  17. God Mode refers to a cheat code that grants invulnerability to all types of damage. For example, entering BIGDADDY in the first installment of the Age of Empires series allows you to summon an invincible sports car equipped with a rocket launcher.
  18. L2P means “learn to play” or “learn to play” in French. This phrase is used in a derogatory manner, especially in online games.
  19. Loot: the English equivalent of "loot." The term refers to items dropped by characters or that can be discovered in chests. The concept of loot is inseparable from several genres of games, such as MMORPGs (World of Warcraft, Dofus, etc.) or Battle Royale (Fortnite, PUBG, etc.).
  20. Mod: This is a partial or complete modification of the original game, carried out by one or more people having no direct link with the development studio. A moderator can, among other things, alter certain features, transform the game world, or add additional quests. Some mods have gained so much popularity that they have become games in their own right. This is particularly the case for Counter-Strike or DotA, which were initially mods for Half-Life and Warcraft 3.
  21. Noob is short for newbie. The word is generally used to negatively portray a beginning player.
  22. No scope: a formula that characterizes the action of shooting at an enemy without using the sight of your weapon.
  23. NPC is an acronym for “non-player character,"  designating any character belonging to the universe but not being led by a human player.
  24. PVP corresponds to “player versus player” in English or “player versus player” (PvP) in French. This acronym refers to game modes that allow players to compete against each other, unlike “player versus environment” (PVE) or “player versus environment” (PvE) in French.
  25. Quickscope: This describes the action of shooting by very briefly using the sight of your weapon.
  26. Rush: This is a tactic that consists of attacking your opponent early or taking control of an area at the start of the game. "ZZerg Rush” on Starcraft is the most emblematic example of this.
  27. Skill refers, in essence, to the skills or abilities of a player in a game.
  28. Speedrun: the practice of optimizing each movement or action to reach the end of a game as quickly as possible. Similar to a virtual "sprint,"  speedrunning requires you to use a variety of tactics, which can go as far as exploiting bugs or glitches.
  29. Theorycraft refers to the process of theoretical analysis of gameplay, taking into account all possible variables. The goal of theorycraft is to identify the most optimal tactics in the game.
  30. Vaporware can be translated as “ghost product." This term refers to titles that are constantly postponed by their developers, even though they have already been widely promoted. In recent years, the most prominent examples of vaporware are Beyond Good and Evil 2 and Duke Nukem Forever.
Gaming Glossary - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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