Almost every day I'm spending time with my group of friends, among them one I will call John. Together, we often play videogames. When playing, John gets very easily upset by things others would brush off, and he gets very vocal about it.
Due to bad ping, John gets hit by a shot when he was already around a corner. While others would let out a sigh or a disappointed "Oh crap", John begins to yell "What the?! I was already around the corner! This f***ing game is so broken! I was already safe, I shouldn't have died!".
Further, he almost always portrays any perceived injustice as specifically against him. It's not just bad net-code or wonky hitboxes - he acts as if the game specifically and exclusively treats him bad and nobody else.
As one might imagine, over the course of several hours, these outbursts begin to dampen the fun quite a lot, and sometimes lead him to "rage-quitting" and leaving the group for the day (which in turn might force us to abandon a game we all enjoyed because we are too few people).
What I tried so far
- I attempted to reason with him at first. For instance, I explained him that wonky hitboxes cause him to miss an enemy just as often as it causes the enemy to miss him. John was very resistant to such explanations and in turn claimed that others never miss him and that he is the only one affected negatively by it. Of course, this is just one example, but you get the idea.
- I attempted to just ignore him and hope he would calm down by himself. This usually doesn't work, as he just keeps on going and on about how he is the victim of everything, about how everyone else is supposedly cheating and so on and so forth. It is just so draining to hear him ranting and complaining all the time and it just drains the fun out of everything for me.
- I attempted to speak to him about how his outbursts and rants affect me, but he argued he can't help himself when he feels treaten unfairly. The rest of the conversation then ends up as shown in 1..
- I attempted to calm him down by saying things like "It's just a game, calm down", with varying degrees of intensity, ranging from a relaxed and friendly tone to something more akin to "Shut the f*** up! You've been ranting non-stop for one and a half hours now!" (which was not very calming in retrospective). As one might imagine, the results ranged from "No improvement" to "And then things got so much worse".
What I considered trying
I considered directly telling him that his temper is a massive problem for me (and at least "very annoying" according to others in our group) and that he has to get a grip on himself if he wants to keep playing with us.
I don't think that this is a good idea, because he might believe I don't want him in our group - which is not true. I do want to play together with him, just without all the temper tantrums. Further, I'm afraid John might think I am not allowing him to be upset at all. I don't mind him benuig upset once or twice, or saying "Oh f***!". But to me, there is a difference between being upset once for 2 seconds and a 90-minute rant about how the world treats you and only you unfairly.
I considered asking him to play really hard and frustrating games with low down-time, such as "Hotline Miami" or "Super Meat Boy". The idea behind this is that when failing over and over and over, he would have to learn how to deal with his frustration and hopefully be more relaxed when playing with us - similar to how people say the best way to cure a fear of flying by flying a lot.
I don't know if this idea has any merit. He might just quit the games when getting too frustrated instead of building higher tolerance against frustration, or they might not have any effect at all on him.
What should I do now? Is there even anything I can do now?