Change the World, Write a game – Gauntlet Thrown Down

Saccharine, oversimplified imagery like this makes me want to fucking hurl. However nice the sentiment.

The arguments about inclusiveness, sexism, etc, et-fucking-cetera rage on and on across the various internet channels and show no sign of dissipating. What there’s very little damn sign of, however, is people putting their money where their mouth is. SarahDarkmagic excluded. On the one hand us existing designers are being told we’re not doing a good enough job of being concerned and inclusive about x, y or z while on the other hand being told we don’t/can’t/won’t understand anyway, which to me seems that we’re doomed, whatever our good intentions might be.

Personally I don’t think these people can be satisfied and I also don’t think there’s anything sinister going on. People are just making what they want and that tends to attract people (of whatever type) who share those desires and preferences. It’s an emergent, self-organising, self-selecting system. If you really, genuinely want to change that (and frankly the only reason these things aren’t a constant issue in gaming is because most gamers are already progressive and inclusive so don’t even see these things as issues) then you have to get off your arse and make the change yourself.

If you feel EXcluded don’t expect to feel INcluded until you’re part of the creative process. Until you’re making games.

If there’s nothing out there you like, get off your fat, lazy arse and make something. Leverage the power of the internet, PDF and PoD to get your vision out there. What are you afraid of? Becoming a laughing stock? If your ideas are valid and can bring people into gaming, if you think you can appeal to a new audience (despite the same lack of budget etc as the rest of us, fucking GO FOR IT!

I did.

Topics that interest me are religion/atheism, politics, mental illness, sex-positivism and various obscure corners of genre fiction. I write what the bloody-hell I want (when I’m not freelancing) and so can you.

I’ll go you one better. You bring your idea to me and if I think it’s a good game – AND ON NO OTHER CRITERION – I’ll help you get it to press. 50/50 split after costs are covered. I’ll do most of the grunt work once there’s a manuscript, including art direction if you don’t want to handle that and the costs of it yourself. I don’t care if your game is about hermaphroditic Doug Winger-style chibi ponies that fight crime with mystical sex orgies so long as it’s a good, playable game.

I’ll go you even better than that, I’ll advise and help along the process – as time permits.

Even if you don’t want to do it WITH me, I’ll share my knowledge and experience of self-publishing RPGs to help you get going.

Shit, if you want to write something for one of MY games I’ll probably go for it. Maybe you want to write a version of Ace of Hearts that’s about eunuchs, or a ’45 adventure about a homosexual anthro-mutant biker gang. Maybe you want to commission a Yaoi set for Hentacle or an adventure about smashing patriarchy for @ctiv8. So long as its good, I don’t care

“Be the change you want to see in the world.”
– as that lovable old paedo Gandhi once said.

That is, if you want to see inclusive games that address your issues and make you feel included, write them. If you want to see a lot of hurtful, divisive arguments and whining… well, that option’s open too.

Yes, I’m being abrasive, but I’m pissed off at this nonsense dragging on. The offers are genuine.

Yes, I’m sweary, I’m British, damn it. Deal.

48 responses to “Change the World, Write a game – Gauntlet Thrown Down

  1. Absolutely!
    Although I’ve not seen the whining you speak of. Can you point to it? 🙂
    BTW, I should defend Wraeththu a little as my name is on it. 🙂
    A lot of the stick it got was from the confrontational way Gabby went against the naysayers. Although the system is far too complicated I grant you.

    • Got nothing but love for Gabby, but it does serve as an example/warning to others about what can happen when you set out to do something different/exclusive/beyond the norm and what you’ve got to be prepared for.

      • Absolutly.
        There were a lot of immature gamers going ‘dude, your character is like gay, no way man, no way’. But Gabby’s insistance that controversy and any publicity was good publicity was way off.
        Once you go down to their level you’ve already lost.

      • Absolutly.
        There were a lot of immature gamers going ‘dude, your character is like gay, no way man, no way’. But Gabby’s insistance that controversy and any publicity was good publicity was way off.
        Once you go down to their level you’ve already lost.

      • Absolutly.
        There were a lot of immature gamers going ‘dude, your character is like gay, no way man, no way’. But Gabby’s insistance that controversy and any publicity was good publicity was way off.
        Once you go down to their level you’ve already lost.

      • Absolutly.
        There were a lot of immature gamers going ‘dude, your character is like gay, no way man, no way’. But Gabby’s insistance that controversy and any publicity was good publicity was way off.
        Once you go down to their level you’ve already lost.

    • Got nothing but love for Gabby, but it does serve as an example/warning to others about what can happen when you set out to do something different/exclusive/beyond the norm and what you’ve got to be prepared for.

    • Got nothing but love for Gabby, but it does serve as an example/warning to others about what can happen when you set out to do something different/exclusive/beyond the norm and what you’ve got to be prepared for.

    • Got nothing but love for Gabby, but it does serve as an example/warning to others about what can happen when you set out to do something different/exclusive/beyond the norm and what you’ve got to be prepared for.

  2. Absolutely!
    Although I’ve not seen the whining you speak of. Can you point to it? 🙂

    BTW, I should defend Wraeththu a little as my name is on it. 🙂
    A lot of the stick it got was from the confrontational way Gabby went against the naysayers. Although the system is far too complicated I grant you.

  3. Absolutely!
    Although I’ve not seen the whining you speak of. Can you point to it? 🙂

    BTW, I should defend Wraeththu a little as my name is on it. 🙂
    A lot of the stick it got was from the confrontational way Gabby went against the naysayers. Although the system is far too complicated I grant you.

  4. Absolutely!
    Although I’ve not seen the whining you speak of. Can you point to it? 🙂

    BTW, I should defend Wraeththu a little as my name is on it. 🙂
    A lot of the stick it got was from the confrontational way Gabby went against the naysayers. Although the system is far too complicated I grant you.

  5. A game designer says, “I have been denied work because I am a woman. I have been sexually assaulted at a convention with no repercussion because I am a woman. I have been insulted publicly because of my gender.” Your answer: Shut the fuck up. Stop whining. Make games. That’s the only way you can fix things.
    She makes games. Telling these people to ‘stop whining’ means that you are not only failing to understand or find sympathy with their issues, but you are committing the exact same behavior they are speaking of.
    You say gaming isn’t a community. If your solution to fight sexism is to make better games, you are giving admission to the community you say doesn’t exist. It’s more than just the games. A number of games are very inclusive, but the gaming community, by and large, is not as much as it should be.

    • Those aren’t the issues people are whining about in this instance. Leave the goalposts where they are thanks.
      I’m not going to get into the convention thing as I suspect there’s a specific instance involved there and the fuss around it was frankly stupid on all sides involved.
      If you can’t get work, make your own, yes, historically that’s how it’s shifted.
      Gaming isn’t a SINGULAR community.
      I’m not particularly interested in tackling the sexism issue because for me, it’s not an issue. I am not sexist, the material I produce I do not consider sexist – even the cheesecake stuff. It may not be to everyone’s taste but that’s taste and that’s subjective.
      If you are obsessed over issue X, Y or Z you can’t expect everyone to be equally concerned or to necessarily address that issue. Especially if you’re a minority of a minority of a minority in a minority pursuit where the money’s tight in the first place and there’s no real evidence that there’s a market that’s actually being left out anyway.
      If you want games about issues X, Y or Z, make them. I’ll help – if they’re any good.
      Putting gamers into siege mode (which is perhaps the one time we are a unified community) isn’t going to help and accusing people who normally feel LIKE victims of being victimisers tends to rub their fur the wrong way.

      • It was stupid? Did you seriously just say that a woman being sexually assaulted was stupid?
        No. We’re done with this discussion. You’ve explained your side. You’ve made your stance clear.

      • Please do try to read what I actually say.
        If you’re referring to the incident I suspect you were referring to the con group were taken to task for the perfectly reasonable position that this was a matter for the police.
        The reaction to that position was stupid and their counter-reaction to that stupidity was stupid.
        I did say I didn’t want to get into that one, as the whole thing was ‘stupid’ or, if you have issues with that terminology ‘Too tangled to make any sense of at this point’.

      • Please do try to read what I actually say.

        If you’re referring to the incident I suspect you were referring to the con group were taken to task for the perfectly reasonable position that this was a matter for the police.

        The reaction to that position was stupid and their counter-reaction to that stupidity was stupid.

        I did say I didn’t want to get into that one, as the whole thing was ‘stupid’ or, if you have issues with that terminology ‘Too tangled to make any sense of at this point’.

      • Please do try to read what I actually say.

        If you’re referring to the incident I suspect you were referring to the con group were taken to task for the perfectly reasonable position that this was a matter for the police.

        The reaction to that position was stupid and their counter-reaction to that stupidity was stupid.

        I did say I didn’t want to get into that one, as the whole thing was ‘stupid’ or, if you have issues with that terminology ‘Too tangled to make any sense of at this point’.

      • Please do try to read what I actually say.

        If you’re referring to the incident I suspect you were referring to the con group were taken to task for the perfectly reasonable position that this was a matter for the police.

        The reaction to that position was stupid and their counter-reaction to that stupidity was stupid.

        I did say I didn’t want to get into that one, as the whole thing was ‘stupid’ or, if you have issues with that terminology ‘Too tangled to make any sense of at this point’.

      • Oh, and I stopped paying attention to that reported incident before it was clear whether she actually had been or not. I haven’t kept up on it since.
        I take it the ‘Did you seriously just say…’ was rhetorical. If it was a genuine question the answer is ‘No, I did not.’

      • Oh, and I stopped paying attention to that reported incident before it was clear whether she actually had been or not. I haven’t kept up on it since.

        I take it the ‘Did you seriously just say…’ was rhetorical. If it was a genuine question the answer is ‘No, I did not.’

      • Oh, and I stopped paying attention to that reported incident before it was clear whether she actually had been or not. I haven’t kept up on it since.

        I take it the ‘Did you seriously just say…’ was rhetorical. If it was a genuine question the answer is ‘No, I did not.’

      • Oh, and I stopped paying attention to that reported incident before it was clear whether she actually had been or not. I haven’t kept up on it since.

        I take it the ‘Did you seriously just say…’ was rhetorical. If it was a genuine question the answer is ‘No, I did not.’

      • It was stupid? Did you seriously just say that a woman being sexually assaulted was stupid?

        No. We’re done with this discussion. You’ve explained your side. You’ve made your stance clear.

      • It was stupid? Did you seriously just say that a woman being sexually assaulted was stupid?

        No. We’re done with this discussion. You’ve explained your side. You’ve made your stance clear.

      • It was stupid? Did you seriously just say that a woman being sexually assaulted was stupid?

        No. We’re done with this discussion. You’ve explained your side. You’ve made your stance clear.

    • Those aren’t the issues people are whining about in this instance. Leave the goalposts where they are thanks.

      I’m not going to get into the convention thing as I suspect there’s a specific instance involved there and the fuss around it was frankly stupid on all sides involved.

      If you can’t get work, make your own, yes, historically that’s how it’s shifted.

      Gaming isn’t a SINGULAR community.

      I’m not particularly interested in tackling the sexism issue because for me, it’s not an issue. I am not sexist, the material I produce I do not consider sexist – even the cheesecake stuff. It may not be to everyone’s taste but that’s taste and that’s subjective.

      If you are obsessed over issue X, Y or Z you can’t expect everyone to be equally concerned or to necessarily address that issue. Especially if you’re a minority of a minority of a minority in a minority pursuit where the money’s tight in the first place and there’s no real evidence that there’s a market that’s actually being left out anyway.

      If you want games about issues X, Y or Z, make them. I’ll help – if they’re any good.

      Putting gamers into siege mode (which is perhaps the one time we are a unified community) isn’t going to help and accusing people who normally feel LIKE victims of being victimisers tends to rub their fur the wrong way.

    • Those aren’t the issues people are whining about in this instance. Leave the goalposts where they are thanks.

      I’m not going to get into the convention thing as I suspect there’s a specific instance involved there and the fuss around it was frankly stupid on all sides involved.

      If you can’t get work, make your own, yes, historically that’s how it’s shifted.

      Gaming isn’t a SINGULAR community.

      I’m not particularly interested in tackling the sexism issue because for me, it’s not an issue. I am not sexist, the material I produce I do not consider sexist – even the cheesecake stuff. It may not be to everyone’s taste but that’s taste and that’s subjective.

      If you are obsessed over issue X, Y or Z you can’t expect everyone to be equally concerned or to necessarily address that issue. Especially if you’re a minority of a minority of a minority in a minority pursuit where the money’s tight in the first place and there’s no real evidence that there’s a market that’s actually being left out anyway.

      If you want games about issues X, Y or Z, make them. I’ll help – if they’re any good.

      Putting gamers into siege mode (which is perhaps the one time we are a unified community) isn’t going to help and accusing people who normally feel LIKE victims of being victimisers tends to rub their fur the wrong way.

    • Those aren’t the issues people are whining about in this instance. Leave the goalposts where they are thanks.

      I’m not going to get into the convention thing as I suspect there’s a specific instance involved there and the fuss around it was frankly stupid on all sides involved.

      If you can’t get work, make your own, yes, historically that’s how it’s shifted.

      Gaming isn’t a SINGULAR community.

      I’m not particularly interested in tackling the sexism issue because for me, it’s not an issue. I am not sexist, the material I produce I do not consider sexist – even the cheesecake stuff. It may not be to everyone’s taste but that’s taste and that’s subjective.

      If you are obsessed over issue X, Y or Z you can’t expect everyone to be equally concerned or to necessarily address that issue. Especially if you’re a minority of a minority of a minority in a minority pursuit where the money’s tight in the first place and there’s no real evidence that there’s a market that’s actually being left out anyway.

      If you want games about issues X, Y or Z, make them. I’ll help – if they’re any good.

      Putting gamers into siege mode (which is perhaps the one time we are a unified community) isn’t going to help and accusing people who normally feel LIKE victims of being victimisers tends to rub their fur the wrong way.

  6. A game designer says, “I have been denied work because I am a woman. I have been sexually assaulted at a convention with no repercussion because I am a woman. I have been insulted publicly because of my gender.” Your answer: Shut the fuck up. Stop whining. Make games. That’s the only way you can fix things.

    She makes games. Telling these people to ‘stop whining’ means that you are not only failing to understand or find sympathy with their issues, but you are committing the exact same behavior they are speaking of.

    You say gaming isn’t a community. If your solution to fight sexism is to make better games, you are giving admission to the community you say doesn’t exist. It’s more than just the games. A number of games are very inclusive, but the gaming community, by and large, is not as much as it should be.

  7. A game designer says, “I have been denied work because I am a woman. I have been sexually assaulted at a convention with no repercussion because I am a woman. I have been insulted publicly because of my gender.” Your answer: Shut the fuck up. Stop whining. Make games. That’s the only way you can fix things.

    She makes games. Telling these people to ‘stop whining’ means that you are not only failing to understand or find sympathy with their issues, but you are committing the exact same behavior they are speaking of.

    You say gaming isn’t a community. If your solution to fight sexism is to make better games, you are giving admission to the community you say doesn’t exist. It’s more than just the games. A number of games are very inclusive, but the gaming community, by and large, is not as much as it should be.

  8. A game designer says, “I have been denied work because I am a woman. I have been sexually assaulted at a convention with no repercussion because I am a woman. I have been insulted publicly because of my gender.” Your answer: Shut the fuck up. Stop whining. Make games. That’s the only way you can fix things.

    She makes games. Telling these people to ‘stop whining’ means that you are not only failing to understand or find sympathy with their issues, but you are committing the exact same behavior they are speaking of.

    You say gaming isn’t a community. If your solution to fight sexism is to make better games, you are giving admission to the community you say doesn’t exist. It’s more than just the games. A number of games are very inclusive, but the gaming community, by and large, is not as much as it should be.

  9. I’d happily have gone with it in a Molly House set game (another game idea godamnit too many!) but really with a house full of canny Courtesans a cross dresser isn’t going to be accepted with open arms.

  10. I’d happily have gone with it in a Molly House set game (another game idea godamnit too many!) but really with a house full of canny Courtesans a cross dresser isn’t going to be accepted with open arms.

  11. I’d happily have gone with it in a Molly House set game (another game idea godamnit too many!) but really with a house full of canny Courtesans a cross dresser isn’t going to be accepted with open arms.

  12. I’d happily have gone with it in a Molly House set game (another game idea godamnit too many!) but really with a house full of canny Courtesans a cross dresser isn’t going to be accepted with open arms.

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