Gamer Slang Words and Phrases Decoded

Gamer language can seem overwhelming to those new to gaming. But even veteran players are sometimes baffled by the latest video game terms.

There are several reasons why gaming terminology is constantly evolving – from tech advances and new video game releases, to the latest pop culture references and social media slang.

At Game Quitters, we’re often asked about gaming lingo. Here are some examples of what parents and those new to the gaming scene want to know:

  • What are things gamers say during gameplay?
  • What is the slang for new player in gaming?
  • What is terminology in games that are for multiple players?
  • What is the gaming phrase for good game?
  • What is gamer girl slang?
  • What are some gamer phrases that are also used on social media?
  • What is ‘get good’ gaming slang?

Gaming terms glossary

fluent in video games

So, if you’ve ever asked any of the above questions about gamer phrases, or simply want to familiarize yourself with the latest gaming slang, check out our jargon-busting guide:

AFK – This means ‘away from keyboard’, which is often used in multiplayer games when a player is going to be unavailable for a while.

Aggro – A shortened version of ‘aggression’ or ‘aggravation’, to describe unwanted attention from the enemy during gameplay.

Basic – A derogatory term to describe a player or game that’s mainstream or unoriginal.

Battle Pass – An in-game reward available to purchase that gives players access to extra gaming content, levels, and virtual items. Many video games feature battle passes, such as Fortnite, Call of Duty, and Clash of Clans.

Camping – A tactical move to describe a player staying in one place during a first-person shooter or fighting game to ambush their opponent.

Casual gamer – One of the nine types of gamers, in this case someone who plays recreationally from time to time, without any need or desire to play more often.

Deathmatch – A gameplay mode that’s incorporated into many shooter and real-time strategy games (RTS), where the aim is to kill as many other characters as possible. (Also known as free-for-all.)

DLC – An abbreviation for downloadable content, which is extra content that’s available after a video game is released to enhance its features, usually for a fee.

End game loop – This is the term used to describe content that’s available for players in MMO games who have finished all available gameplay.

Esports – One of fastest growing sports in the world, esports is competitive video games, where gamers play in high-profile tournaments for prize money. (Also known as e-sports, electronic sports, competitive gaming, and professional gaming.)

Free-for-all – see Deathmatch.

F2P – This stands for ‘free to play’, which means the game can be played for free – although it may still contain loot boxes and battle passes as a way for the game developer to make money.

Gamer girl – This one is pretty obvious, it’s the term for a female gamer.

Git gud – Gamer speak for ‘get good’ and refers to getting better at a game or challenge.

GG – A commonly used term that meaning ‘good game’.

GLHF – This abbreviation for ‘good luck, have fun’. It’s a friendly phrase used by players at the start of a game.

Griefing – A way to describe the act of purposely harassing another player or disrupting their gameplay.

HP – The abbreviation for ‘hit points’ which represent the amount of damage a character can take without dying or getting knocked out.

IYKYK – Used widely across social media as well as in the gaming world. It means ‘if you know you know’ and often implies there’s an inside joke.

JRPG – This stands for ‘Japanese role-playing games’, often with an emphasis on storytelling and usually designed in anime style. Popular JRPG titles include Tales of Arise, Chrono Trigger, and Dragon Quest 11.

Kill steal (also known as KS) – Giving the final blow in a kill and receiving the credit for it, when most of the damage was inflicted by another player.

Loot box – A loot box is a virtual item in a game that contains a randomized reward. It’s often compared to gambling.

MMO – This stands for massively multiplayer online, a type of video game that can be played by many people who can interact with each other during gameplay.

Noob – This is one way of saying ‘new player’ – others are n00b and newb.

Prog – Short for ‘progress’ and often used by players in MMOs to refer to their progress in the game.

Ragequit – When a player stops playing mid-game because they’re frustrated or angry about losing.

RPG – The abbreviation for role-playing game, which involves a player taking on the role of a specific character, often in a fantasy or science fiction video game. Well-known RPGs include Starfield, Diablo IV, and Sea of Stars.

RTS – This means ‘real-time strategy’ and is a type of video game that allows multiple gamers to play concurrently in real time.

Sandbox – A type of video game that gives players much freedom and creativity – usually with no specific objective – so they can build, change, or destroy their world/environment.  Popular sandbox titles include Minecraft, Roblox, and SimCity.

Skin – A virtual item that can be purchased to decorate weapons or customize characters in the game. Beware some players may engage in skins gambling.

TBS – Turn-based strategy games involve players taking turns to play.

Throw shade — To criticize, insult, or belittle someone during gameplay – also used in other situations.

Tryhard – A negative term to describe someone who’s so focused on winning – often to the detriment of other players – that the game stops being fun.

UX – This is one of the most common game design terms and means ‘user experience’. It’s about making sure the menu, icons, text, navigation, etc. are intuitive and easy to use so that players have an enjoyable gaming experience.

WOW – An abbreviation of the popular World of Warcraft video game.

WP – This simply means ‘well played’ and is a term used to praise another gamer.

Discover more slang words and acronyms used by teens across the internet and on social platforms like Snapchatand Instagram in our other must-read guides.

Need help understanding gaming?

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