|Why We Fight Against Each Other
I might be dreaming or looking back through rose colored glasses, but I remember a shinier, happier time where the players got along on almost all fronts. You could travel from campfire to campfire sharing your drinks and stories of the days bitter victories and defeats. Barring minor mishaps and localized disputes, everyone was each other's friend. We all played the same game and in that unity we all prospered and gloried in the same adventures.
Sadly, times have changed. This might be the natural course of things; as the game grew, it evolved. In that evolution, a different mindset and game was born, bringing competition, the willingness to win, and the egos that came with it.
Back in the day, we all played a much different game. The emphasis was much more based in role-playing instead of competition. In the role-playing game, there was a common goal for each player and a willingness to work together to reach that. We were all dorks together. Now our big names almost all refuse to role-play and, in so doing, reduce the role-players to outcasts in their own game. To be cool, one must compete and win. To win, it appears you must have a huge attitude. You must insult and degrade or ignore those who don't compete with you. People are actually of the mindset that they are somehow cool when degrading others and winning in fake fantasy combat. They think they are awesome as the best dork in a dorky game, never even realizing the fact that they are still playing a 'Live Action Fantasy-Based ROLE-PLAYING' game. Dragons, wizards, ninjas, kings and elves - that's what this game was founded on, not line battles and tournies. We seemed to have lost our way with no bread crumbs to bring us back.
This might have started awhile back with the new tech. Competition became fiercer and camps started to form. A lot of people who embraced the new tech kind of forced the others out with the competition and the attitudes. The players we actually where able to keep were of the same mindset as the other alphas. That kind of compounds the problem. Two games formed and they cannot get along.
Mostly, I see the stick-Jocks travelling to events. Less and less do I see the role-players at the big events. When I do see them, its just once; they don't come back for more because it's a hostile environment. They stick to their own events and in so doing separate the game even more between them and us, stick-jock and role-player, two games in one.
We bill ourselves as 'Live Action Role-players' to the public, but that is not the face we show when they come and see us play. The public sees a ditch and attitudes. They see smack talk and a little love for the backstabber. This is not a friendly environment for a new player, especially our target audience. We seek the tabletop gamer and the socially inept. They seek a community and a sense of belonging. Our current membership does not offer that. We offer smack-talk and a little love when they backstab us. We also offer a little more social stigma as they are the dorkiest of the dorks. They are not cool enough to hang out with the awesome stick-jocks and mighty warlords. They are outcasts in an outcast game. Why would they want to stay for more of the attitude they get aplenty in school or at home in their real life?
The E-Sam love has got to go. There is absolutely no reason we should be degrading and insulting our friends. We all have a common goal and should be working together. Some friendly rivalry is not out of line, but when it consumes almost all of the posts it is just plain endless trash. If you want to troll, go play on Break. All opinions all the time is not all insults all the time.
Things are not all bad, though. When I look at Amtgard, I still see a community. I can almost guarantee that no matter which park someone travels to, someone would open up their home for a night. No matter which park they travel to, they would be greeted and welcomed. I still see a common bond with every other player of this great game. We all love going outside and playing with our friends. I just wish we could all become friends again. I wish we would fight with each other instead of against.
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