Gank vs. Gang: What's the Difference?
Gank is a gaming term indicating an ambush on a player, while Gang refers to a group of individuals associated for a common purpose or activity.
Gank and Gang may sound similar, but they serve very different functions in the English language. Gank originates from the world of online gaming and refers to the act of ambushing or suddenly attacking another player, often when they least expect it. This word has a very specific niche usage, primarily within gaming communities. Gang, on the other hand, is a widely understood term referring to a group of people, often implying a shared purpose or sometimes a shared identity, which can sometimes have negative connotations related to criminal activity.
While Gank often has a tactical connotation, mainly in multiplayer online games, where team coordination can lead to a successful ambush of an opposing player, Gang can be neutral or have social, cultural, or criminal implications. A gang can be simply a group of friends, a team working on a project, or, in some cases, a group involved in illegal activities.
The origin of Gank is relatively recent, with its roots in the late 20th and early 21st century as online multiplayer games gained popularity. Gang, however, has older origins, with historical records tracing back to Old English and even Norse languages, where it meant "a journey" or "a way."
To highlight the distinct usages: in a gaming scenario, players might "gank" an opponent to gain an advantage. In contrast, a "gang" might gather to discuss a common interest or, in more negative contexts, plan some unlawful activities.
Using these terms interchangeably would lead to confusion. For example, saying you "ganged" someone in a game would sound odd to most gamers, just as saying a "gank of people" would sound incorrect in everyday conversation.
An ambush or sudden attack in gaming
A group of individuals with a shared purpose or identity
Online multiplayer gaming
Old English and Norse languages
Tactical, related to gameplay
Neutral, social, cultural, or criminal
Specific to gaming scenarios
Widely used in various contexts
Ambushing an opposing player in a game
A group of friends, a team, or a criminal organization
Gank and Gang Definitions
A sudden ambush in online games.
They planned to gank the enemy player near the river.
A group of criminals or hoodlums who band together for mutual protection and profit.
A tactic to overpower an opponent in multiplayer games.
A well-coordinated gank can turn the tide of the game.
A group of adolescents who band together, especially a group of delinquents.
To eliminate a player using superior numbers or positioning.
They managed to gank the leader of the opposing team.
(Informal) A group of people who associate regularly on a social basis
The whole gang from the office went to a clambake.
Gaming jargon for surprising and defeating a player.
He always knew the best spots to gank unsuspecting foes.
A group of laborers organized together on one job or under one foreperson
A railroad gang.
An unexpected attack on a player.
He was frustrated after a series of unfortunate ganks.
A matched or coordinated set, as of tools
A gang of chisels.
A pack of wolves or wild dogs.
A herd, especially of buffalo or elk.
To kill much weaker players in an online video game in such a way that they cannot defend themselves. Common methods include attacking in much greater numbers or taking a well-equipped high-level character to assault players in a starting area.
Our group totally ganked this guy.
Variant of gangue.
To band together as a group or gang.
To arrange or assemble into a group, as for simultaneous operation or production
Gang several pages onto one printing plate.
To attack as an organized group.
To go; walk; proceed.
(transitive) To attach similar items together to form a larger unit.
Pronunciation spelling of gan
Synonym of gangbang: to have sex with a single partner as a gang.
A number going in company; a number of friends or persons associated for a particular purpose.
The Gashouse Gang
The gang from our office is going out for drinks Friday night.
A group of laborers under one foreman; a squad.
A gang of sailors; a railroad gang; a labor gang or pool.
A criminal group with a common cultural background and identifying features, often associated with a particular section of a city.
A youth gang; a neighborhood gang; motorcycle gang.
A group of criminals or alleged criminals who band together for mutual protection and profit.
The Winter Hill Gang was quite proficient at murdering rival mobsters in order to take over their rackets.
A group of politicians united in furtherance of a political goal.
The Gang of Four was led by Jiang Qing, the fourth wife of Mao Zedong.
Not all members of the Gang of Six are consistent in their opposition to filibuster.
(US) A chain gang.
A combination of similar tools or implements arranged so as, by acting together, to save time or labor; a set.
A gang of saws; a gang of plows; a gang drill; gang milling.
A set; all required for an outfit.
A new gang of stays.
(electrics) A number of switches or other electrical devices wired into one unit and covered by one faceplate.
An outlet gang box; a double gang switch.
(electrics) A group of wires attached as a bundle.
A gang of wires
Do a drop for the telephone gang, then another drop for the Internet gang, both through the ceiling of the wiring closet.
A going, journey; a course, path, track.
(obsolete) An outhouse: an outbuilding used as a lavatory.
To go; to walk.
A going; a course.
A number going in company; hence, a company, or a number of persons associated for a particular purpose; a group of laborers under one foreman; a squad; as, a gang of sailors; a chain gang; a gang of thieves.
A combination of similar implements arranged so as, by acting together, to save time or labor; a set; as, a gang of saws, or of plows.
A set; all required for an outfit; as, a new gang of stays.
The mineral substance which incloses a vein; a matrix; a gangue.
A group of teenagers or young adults forming a more or less formalized group associating for social purposes, in some cases requiring initiation rites to join; as, a teen gang; a youth gang; a street gang.
A group of persons organized for criminal purposes; a criminal organization; as, the Parker gang.
An association of criminals;
Police tried to break up the gang
A pack of thieves
An informal body of friends;
He still hangs out with the same crowd
An organized group of workmen
Tool consisting of a combination of implements arranged to work together
Act as an organized group
A group of individuals with a shared purpose.
The whole gang gathered for the reunion.
A criminal organization or group involved in illegal activities.
The police are investigating the activities of the local gang.
A team or crew working together.
The construction gang was hard at work on the new bridge.
A casual group of friends or acquaintances.
She went to the movies with her gang.
A collective often used in specific contexts like "chain gang" or "press gang."
He was captured and forced into a press gang.
Which term is older, Gank or Gang?
Gang is the older term with origins in Old English and Norse.
Is Gank commonly used outside of gaming?
No, Gank is primarily a term used within gaming communities.
Can Gang refer to a group of friends?
Yes, Gang can be a casual term for a group of friends.
Is a Gank always successful in gaming?
No, while the intention is to gain an advantage, ganks can fail.
How did Gank come about as a term?
Gank emerged with the rise of online multiplayer gaming in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.
What does Gank mean?
Gank refers to a sudden ambush or attack on a player in online games.
How is Gang defined?
Gang typically refers to a group of individuals with a shared purpose or identity.
Are all gangs criminal in nature?
No, the term can refer to any group, but it sometimes implies criminal activity.
Can Gang have negative connotations?
Yes, especially when referring to groups involved in criminal activities.
Can Gank be used as a noun and a verb?
Yes, you can "gank" someone (verb) or refer to an action as a "gank" (noun).
Written bySawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited byHuma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.