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Frag

noun; zero derivation
A point gained in an online action game by killing (lit. fragmenting) another player. (‘The player with the most frags wins’) Frag has meaning both as a verb (a sense it has always had) and as a noun (which is newer). In its verb sense, frag is to destroy. Originally, frag was used with an external object (eg. the artillery shell fragged the Jeep), but now it is appropriate to use even when something acts on itself (eg. my hard disk fragged this weekend). In its noun sense, a frag is a kill in one of the extremely violent online action games now popular among computer-literate youths (Quake, Doom, etc…). Frag is yet another word from the domain of online gaming that has become so widespread as to defy a specific citation; that given above is but an example. Though used in a military context for decades, frag has taken on new meaning with the recent increase in popularity of online games; it has been used in the latter sense for about three years. It seems likely that whoever coined the noun form of frag did so via analogy to the other cases mentioned, perhaps to give the game he was working on some distinctiveness (‘kill’ would have worked just as well). Frag’s noun form has come about through zero derivation, and makes sense if considered along with such words as score and kill. In each case, the result of an action gets associated with the action itself (a kind of metonymic connection). Thus fragging (blowing into little pieces; literally, fragmenting) another player in Quake has led to the use of frag as a noun. The way it is used now, a frag is something one accumulates by splattering other players.
 
DawgNuts left the game with 13 frags.
Etymology : Zero derivation from verb FRAG, to destroy
Source : Quake game
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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