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Monday, April 3, 2017

Can You Map the OSR by "The Politics of Personalities?"

Here we are, a week after my return from Gary Con and I find I'm still playing catch up, this time with blog reading.

It's funny that I didn't cut my hair for nearly 11 months in the hopes of growing a ponytail - hint: it never got long enough so I cut it short right before the con. I almost went hipster ;)

Anyhow, I find it interesting that instead of focusing on actual blog content or community building, Patrick Stewart instead focused on things like politics and geography.

Really, when it comes down to it, what does politics have to do with gaming or the OSR? Does it matter who at what publisher voted for who (because yes, even publishers have questions about their political leanings)

As for geography, the internet and VTTs blur the line of distance and location, so it seems pointless to even attempt to do so. It is literally making assumptions based on little, if any, facts.

As for the OSR being driven by personalities, no more so than any other hobby. I'm fairly sure the majority of old school gamers have no idea who I am, not do they care to do so. (case in point, NTRPG 2015, where my wife Rach was astounded that someone as the Con had no clue who I was ;)

You can read more at the False Machine Blog


  1. People just have to shoehorn other people.

  2. I got the feeling Pat doesn't really know what to make of the Tavern - you've "got your own thing" and it's not psychedelic DIY D&D - it's another admirable sort of old school activity.

    1. Its like trying to determine the standard bearer of the OSR. If you are active in the OSR in ANY way, you are a standard bearer. Hold it high and hold it with pride :)

  3. Psychedelic DIY D&D... what, is that a new game or something? :D (Actually sounds like fun.)

  4. I like the ending with the hipster cred of 9.5k in G+ followers.

    1. That's not hipster cred. It seems like more of a warning. Don't piss this guy off just because he's not a rainbow flame liberal.

  5. "D&D is the ultimate right wing wet dream. A bunch of guys who are better than your average joe set out into the middle of nowhere where they murder and kill everything they come across in order to stockpile gold and elaborate magical bling. There are no taxes, no state and any poor people that get in your way get their village burned to the ground. It's like Ayn Rand on PCP."

    "Essentially, your bog-standard D&D session is a facet of rape culture: a bunch of men (and perhaps one or two sexualized women) descend into dark depths to penetrate the underprivileged, poor denizens there with their phallic objects, and use their mysterious, privilege-generated powers to oppress and kill anyone who isn't like them. As if violence for violence's sake wasn't bad enough."

    -- Collected on the Internet, so it must be true. QED, everyone who enjoys old-school D&D or a variant thereof is a fascist.

    1. Hehehe we now have a "leftist" version of the Satanic Panic!

      Though I won't be surprised if a "rightist" of the same kind would claim that D&D is Evil Communist Brainwashing as it has a Party (!!!) which expropriates Private Property from its Rightful Owners (such as Orcs)!

      Plus D&D violates the NAP!

      Internet politics have great entertaining value. :-D

      (I am an old-school Leftist and think that such stuff is absuredly ridiculous. Plus I prefer to keep real-life politics out of my game; I game, among other things, to take a break from this)

    2. Hilarious!

      Though maybe that's why I always preferred the cynical free-market libertarianism of Traveller, where a common government type is the "Feudal Technocracy" (basically crony capitalism) and your average player character is just some down on his or her luck punk, leveraged to the hilt and just tryin' to stay one step ahead of the debt collectors, willing to do anything for a buck.

    3. Collected from the Internet on April 1, right?

  6. Yep, even in fantasy/hobby rpg gaming, identity politics is there to keep folks "in their place".

    Write and run games the way that works best for you Eric. Leave the nonsense to those lacking the wisdom to see things for what they are, not what they want them to be.

  7. This reminds me of a forum post I read several years ago which claimed that "sandboxes are (right-)Libertarian" and thus superior or more structured plots which were "Leftist" (the poster was obviously right-Libertarian).

    Trying to project real-life politics, or even worse - the American Culture Wars - onto a *game* set in a *fictional world* is absurd and tends to get very tedious very very very soon.

  8. I am not a fan of gatekeeping in any fashion, though I understand the very ironic human need to do so. Every group has founders and pioneers who try to attract recruits to their group. If the group grows, it begins to attract more and more people, until inevitably the group expands to attract a larger audience, which by its size and nature is a more diverse set than the founding group. That's when the trouble usually starts.

  9. You nailed it Tenkar (in fewer words) what does it matter what political bent we have as long as we can sit at a table (virtual or otherwise) and have fun. Kinda tired of the political cross over into a everyone-is-welcome-to-have-fun-gaming community. Thanks for being you!

  10. As far as I'm concerned, what is more important than anything else is how you treat others. While I understand that politics can sometimes inform that, as long as I feel like I'm being respected by the other people at the table, I don't really care about what political differences we may have unless it gets brought into the game in some way.

  11. Of course, there are some on the G+ thread that insist keeping politics away from the gaming table makes me a "right winger", because I'm not fighting for the disenfranchised when I game.

    Seriously, WTF?


    As wiser men then me said: Be excellent to each other :)

  12. As someone smarter than me once said, "Some people got their heads so far up their politics they can't see straight."

    There are some things that we all have in common. That thing is "tabletop gaming." There's funny-looking dice, and the black sheep of the family who don't use dice at all. There's story gamers and sandboxers, wargamers and card gamers. I don't quite understand the interest in boxing the crowd in by their politics.

  13. Perhaps I should be glad he's never heard of me, Adventures Dark and Deep, Greyhawk Grognard, or Castle of the Mad Archmage!



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