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Sunday 3 August 2014

"Thank You"s, and Why Game Designers Should Speak Out

I've got a game in a little under two hours, but I wanted to take the brief moment I have today to say a heartfelt Thank You, to everyone who's been supporting me at this time in the face of the constant, vicious, and deceitful assaults of the Pseudo-Activist Outrage Brigade.

A particular thank you to those people who've sent this blog a donation via our paypal button!  It's very much appreciated, because these people who want to control the hobby want to do so by making sure that anyone they don't like doesn't get to work in it.  The more success I get as a direct result of their attacks, the more futile they are.  So thank you, your donations, large or small, all mean a great deal to me.

But most of all, thank you to those well-known Game Designers who've sent me messages of support.  Its really nice to get messages of support from fans, friends and well-wishers, particularly if you're feeling especially worn down from a brutal and baseless smear campaign.

But it's even nicer when respected game designers you've never talked to before and have no particular reason to do so send you messages of support. It's nice to see the real industry isn't buying the bullshit that the Outrage Brigade are selling.  As great as it was to see guys like GMS or James Raggi rushing to our defense, they have been similarly attacked by the Outrage Brigade in the past.  Award-winning designer Mark Plemmons has never been so attacked, to my knowledge, so seeing his support is even nicer; but of course he's also someone I've frequently corresponded with in the past.

I was particularly pleased to get a letter of support, therefore, from S. John Ross.  In spite of his being a fellow D&D 5e Consultant, I don't really know him at all. But he took the time to send me a little message about how what the Outrage Brigade are doing is "bullshit" and a "smear-campaign", and wishing me well.   I really appreciate it, and I feel bad that all this nonsense has detracted from people paying attention to the rest of the truly great consulting team WoTC put together.

Now, this is important. Ross isn't really into the same kind of stuff as I am.  I'm pretty sure he doesn't particularly like some of what I say. But he clearly understood that what's going on here is seriously dangerous for the hobby as a whole.

Game Designers: whether or not you agree with me and Zak about absolutely everything, you need to seriously think about standing up to the Outrage Brigade now.  Because if they were to somehow manage to sway Wizards of the Coast, it would be by fooling people into thinking that they represent the majority or the mainstream of the industry. And if they do, don't imagine that because you're not all that controversial you'll somehow be safe from them.  People like Zak and me? We're the first best line of defense, but we're also the obvious place to strike.  But if the industry decides it will pay the Danegeld this time to placate these barbarians; well, the problem is that once you pay the Danegeld you pay it forever.  They will only be emboldened.  And how long until they start making demands of you, or of companies you work with, to get to decide what you can and can't do with your own games? How long until you live under the threat of boycott and blackballing if you question them in any way?

So you best think about taking a stand now, when it's us they're trying to drive out of business and not yet you.


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Poker + H&H's Beverwyck


  1. I don't particularly agree or disagree with a lot of what you say...I always find it worth reading, but I take it as "that's the Pundit's take on it." In short, I do not care so much about the OSR or the opposite--it's all good in my opinion. I do notice that both you and Zak S. can be rather pungent in your expression.

    And I say--so what? If I don't like something, I can ignore it, I can argue with it, or if I am really, really offended I can stop reading your blog. Because I'm free.

    But to smear and lie about someone is just evil. And I wouldn't do it to somebody Whose every word I disagreed with. Voltaire was right--we have to defend people's right to express an opinion; the test of character comes when it's someone we disagree with. The issues here have gone way beyond politics or gaming into fundamental issues of right or wrong.

    Stay strong, my friend.

  2. Pundit, I used to think your rants against "The Swine" were a product of your paranoia. However, the current controversy (that refuses to die while having lost its freshness months ago) led me to conclude that, yes there are people in this hobby who think they should get to decide who gets to be published and who doesn't based on their likes and dislikes. I find that attitude incredibly shitty so thank you for standing to them.

  3. Thanks to all for the support.