Watch This Garbage

Some of you people probably read this blog thinking the author is insane, or autistic, or some kind of sociopathic reprobate.  You’re right on all counts, but that doesn’t make me wrong.

The old saw, “As above, so below,” cuts the other way, too.  It’s also accurate to say, “As below, so above.”  At the micro level, if you don’t wash your hands after performing your morning ablutions, you’re going to wind up eating fecal coliform bacteria along with your food. If you don’t keep your culture clean, at some point you’re going to wind up consuming fecal coliform bacteria along with your entertainment.  If you don’t wash the SJW’s out of the RPG hobby every so often, at some point you’re going to get a whole bunch of shit in your game.

Case in point: Anna Kreider’s “The Watch”

A few choice quotes to bring you up to speed.  Apparently, Kreider gets paid by the word.  I’ve edited this down to make it a little more coherent.  Note that it doesn’t reach full coherency – given the material we’re working with here that’s an almost literal Sisyphean task – but at least you get a window into the mind and soul of a deeply broken woman who utterly fails to understand men:

 

The Watch is a low-fantasy game about women (and other female-of-center people)

Woah, woah, woah.  Female-of-center?  The thought-poo of the left just never stops mutating into ever more virulent strains.  It’s amazing any of them can keep up.

who are fighting to retake their homeland from the Shadow – a darkly sorcerous threat that has the power to possess men and use them for its own violent ends. So much has already been lost to the Shadow – land, loved ones, and traditions. But your people have come together, forming a new fighting force from those able to resist the Shadow, which they call the Watch.

PCs have to roll to Resist the Shadow “when [they] give the Shadow an opening into [their] heart by engaging in toxic behavior”, which is a reflection of internalized misogyny and the toxic scripts that people of all genders – not just men – internalize.

See, what I never actually say when I run the game is that the Shadow is actually patriarchy – I tell them that the Shadow is toxic masculinity, and that’s why the men in this world are so vulnerable to the Shadow. Because the idea of “man” is what makes them vulnerable to its influence. And all of that is true!

sandwich

Don’t tempt me, baby.  Dooooon’t tempt me.

Here’s a woman telling you what makes a real man.  She’s written a game to help everyone – men and women – understand what makes for a real man.  Perhaps the ol’ Alt-Right DM oughta write a game to help Anna Kreider understand what makes for a real woman.  You could whip up a fantasy Sauron that seduces women away from the best things about being a woman, bearing children, raising families, building happy homes, and convinces them they should engage in less worthwhile pursuits like cubical farming, celebrating obesity, and writing garbage RPGs.

 

For just one quick look at Kreider’s abject idiocy, take a look at her idiotic attempt to police the behavior of the Other, which is entirely based on any understanding of how relationships work:

Another notable example happened a couple months ago where I was running (again at a convention) and one PC – played by a guy who looked to be in his early 20s – challenged another PC (played by Drew, actually) to a fight. So they started squaring off against each other, with all kinds of macho posturing for the benefit of the audience of NPCs surrounding them. Again I stepped in before things went any further. “Hey, guys. That’s some macho dick-measuring nonsense you’re engaged in. Roll to Resist the Shadow”.

What she defines as toxic is actually a time-worn and very important aspect of male relationships that has gone a long way towards making the world a better place.  What she calls macho posturing is actually a game of bluff and counter-bluff that if frequently used to prevent the break-out of actual violence.  In her world, men moving straight to naked blades and getting stabby is far preferable to using words and posturing.  A slow build up, time to assess the situation, analyze the threat, and perhaps back down if you’ve bit off more than you can chew…that’s the sort of thing that people do when they face potential consequences for making a bad choice.

 

That’s not a concept with which Kreider has anything more than a passing familiarity.  It’s understandable, as a woman in The Current Year nothing is ever her fault, and you can’t expect her to face the consequences for her choices and actions.  Society has built, and continues to build, a culture where she can always walk away from the consequences of her actions, and when she can’t, somebody will be there to help shield her from them.  Fools like Krieder simply can’t wrap their precious  little heads around the larger sociological implications of what she calls “macho dick-measuring nonsense”, nor can they put themselves into the head space of The Other, and consider the deeper reasoning and experience that leads The Other to act the way they do.

And there’s an interesting observation for you.  For all their moral posturing and finger wagging, it is actually leftists like Krieder who completely lack any semblance of empathy or ability to consider viewpoints that don’t align with their own warped understanding of how the world works.  She provides further evidence for her hatred for the differences and diversity that make this world such a rich tapestry of experience (and here I adopt the soaring verbiage they like to use merely as a subtle dig at their hypocrisy).  Consider this quote, “afterward we had a great conversation about macho posturing and about the difference between masculine bonding-through-insults versus bonding through real emotional intimacy.”

Get that?  One form of bonding is bad and doesn’t constitute ‘real emotional intimacy’ because…well, she doesn’t say, but from the context and what she’s written before it’s clear that this form of bonding is toxic for reasons that…well, just because, that’s why.  Clearly, she doesn’t understand men, male relationships, or even how healthy relationships work.

Just to hammer that last point home, let’s look at that last quote again, “afterward we had a great conversation about macho posturing and about the difference between masculine bonding-through-insults versus bonding through real emotional intimacy.”  That’s not the only time she mentions that the game inspired post-game lecturing on How Things Should Be Done.  Here’s another: “I said, “awesome. That’s super toxic. Please roll to Resist the Shadow.” The player looked surprised for a second, then nodded his agreement and rolled the move, and afterward we had a pretty cool conversation about it!”

Every time a woman says, “we need to have a conversation,” she really means, “I need to lecture you about something.”  (Yes, Obama has used the former phrase a number of times, and every time he says it, he means the latter.  Clearly our first gay president is also a female-of-center person.  No need to vote for Hillary, folks – we already have our first female president.)

Sweet sainted Gygax, Kreider actually does more selling of The Watch as an RPG club with which to beat others about the head with her stunted and sick political philosophy than she does as an RPG game with which to have a little fun with your friends.  Can you imagine your DM plonking a game down on the table, excited to try this new political tract out?  Can you imagine laughing in his face and giving him a metaphorical, if not literal, wedgie for even suggesting that you might want to play a game dedicated to telling you how horrible you are as a person and that this game here will help lift the scales from your eyes and understand that you’d be a much better man if you were only more like a woman?

That’s the world Krieder inhabits.  That’s the way her brain works.  That the way she thinks people relate to each other.

Has anyone checked to see what sort of skin care regimen Kreider uses?  The more I read this blog post of hers, the more I start to wonder if she isn’t some sort of lizard-person wearing a suit made out of human skin.

Yeah, but so what?  So what if a bunch of nutters out on the fringes of the hobby write bizarre and alien games predicated on hateful and disgusting topics almost from the very beginning.  Haven’t small-press games like RaHoWa and Fatal and whatever title Venger Satanis is dumping on the market been part and parcel of the hobby from day one?

That’s a valid point, and I’m glad I brought it up.  Counter-point:

You don’t see the guys behind Fatal, RaHoWa, and Venger Satanis’  puppet-strings sitting on a panel of ‘industry insiders’ at the largest RPG convention in the world, do you?  And (aside from Venger who cannot be stopped without a young priest an old priest and a whole lot of holy water) you don’t see them shoveling more and more garbage on the market all the time, do you?

And why don’t you?  Because back in the day, we wouldn’t stand for that.  We laughed, mocked, and ignored them until they went away.  And for decades the hobby was just a fun way to pass the time.  We’ve lost that magic.  We’ve lost our way.  We don’t just tolerate this ignorance and stupidity, we embrace and reward it.  And the more we embrace this garbage, the more of it we’re going to get.

The more we as a hobby tolerate this sort of nonsense, the more of it we’re going to get.  Let that sink in for a bit.  Do you really want Anna Kreider’s greasy fingerprints getting all over your D&D?  Do you really want all this political nonsense in the hobby?  Do you really want Law/Chaos replaced with Left/Right mechanics?  If not, then for God’s sake, stop encouraging it.  Mock it.  Ignore it.  Whatever it takes, you have to stop this madness, or we’ll all wind up with RPG Hitler.  And nobody wants RPG Hitler.  Not even Pundy.

Worse yet, I might have to write a game.

And nobody wants that to happen.

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About The Alt-Right DM

At long last, a tall cool drink of alt-right water in the midst of a liberal and cuckservative desert. Inspired by the need for soldiers in the Culture War, E. Reagan Wright volunteered to stand up to the forces of progressivism before they complete their takeover of the once energetic, diverse and just plain fun hobby of role-playing games. A lone voice in the digital wilderness preaching to that quiet, right-wing remnant that has languished in the cold for years. E. Reagan Wright loves his Mom, guns, apple pie, football, and calling that lesser game by its rightful name - soccer.
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9 Responses to Watch This Garbage

  1. Cirsova says:

    I just realized the irony that the Watch is actually virulently transphobic/transexclusionary – Female to Male transpeople couldn’t join “The Watch” and would probably be seen as more likely to be ‘evil’ and ‘corrupted’ because they were adopting the trappings and behaviors of maleness.

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    • @Cirsova, that’s super unfortunate that we’ve painted the game in that light to you. We haven’t gotten a lot of feedback from F-to-M trans people yet but one of our playtesters is a trans man who I did hear back from and was really happy to see how it was represented in the game; he indicated he was so glad to see his gender was treated just like any other man’s. Clearly it’s not spot on if it seems insulting to you though, if you’d like to talk more about it, I’d be glad to hear your feedback and see if we can take steps to make it even better! Thanks.

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      • Cirsova says:

        I find it more amusing than insulting. I’m gender dysphoric but non-trans. It’s worth noting, however, that gendered behavior shaming can contribute to dysphoria.

        I think the biggest problem you face PR-wise with this game is that you haven’t managed to convey to anyone what it is beyond masculinity shaming.

        There could be a great game in there somewhere; I don’t know. But in all of the posts I’ve followed about it, I can’t find what that is.

        The Watch, at least in the way it’s been written about so far, lacks subtlety and comes across as hamfisted.

        I don’t know if you’ll find it helpful, but I did a comparison of the Watch (based on the publicly available information in Kreider’s posts) with a superficially similar game that came out last year. https://cirsova.wordpress.com/2016/08/15/a-post-in-which-i-prove-anna-kreider-correct-re-her-statement-that-the-watch-is-inspiring-conversations-about-masculinity/

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      • Well I can promise you that gendered behavior shaming is certainly not something we’re going for with the game. Can you expound on how it’s doing so, so that I can address that? Or was your original point about trans men being affected by the Shadow the problem there? The idea of the Shadow compromising any men who come into contact with it was the original idea to ensure the stories told in the game were about non-dudes, because it seems most games I play default to that for many reasons. And trans men are dudes, I believe that wholeheartedly they’re men. If we exclude them from that definition, we’re invalidating their gender, do you agree?

        So, like, I get it, Anna’s posts are all you’ve seen about The Watch and she’s only been writing about a certain angle of the game. I don’t do a lot of PR, I find it personally taxing, I like a game’s pitch to stand on its own merit whenever possible, but your point is a good one; how can you critique a game you only know a few things about?

        The Watch is a ton of fun, at its core the play experience (I come at this as having run a 10 session campaign and played in a 11 session campaign) isn’t about fighting toxic masculinity really – that’s an important theme to be sure – but it’s a story about these women / non-binary / non-gendered / gender fluid people fighting in a horrible war that takes its toll on them. Each session your squad heads out on dangerous missions (which are handled by special Mission Moves) and comes home beaten, battered, or maybe even okay. After a mission, the game focuses on the interpersonal relationships between the players and the many faces in camp. We have moves like Blow Off Steam, Open Up to Someone, Provoke Someone, and many others that push the drama. The campaign has a predetermined # of missions you have to go on before the game is done, each contributing to the slow crawl of victory over the Shadow; and over time your actions in the Watch determine how society back home is changing so it will look very different when you finally get to return to it.

        I hope that sheds a bit more light on what the game is like and if you’d like a peek at the playtest documents I’d be happy to share a preview with you so you can see what we’re going for with it. Thanks for taking the time to respond to my posts, your perspective is appreciated.

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      • Cirsova says:

        If you don’t mind, leave a comment on my post on my page; we can continue any discussion there.

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  2. Hey, I’m the co-designer on The Watch and as a cis-male heterosexual I think I bring a pretty good insight into the world of masculinity, both toxic and healthy. It’s a world I live in each day to varying degrees and you forgot to include that when you tore Wundergeek’s perspective to shreds here; my fingerprints are all over this game too, especially in the toxic masculinity realms. We’re working really hard to make a game that is both fun and teaches people a few things. If we’ve included something in the game that you think is wrong, I’d love to talk about that with you, either over a PM service or a voice call sometime.

    We’re not “the evil left” over here, we’re all just trying to make games that are respectful and rewarding. I bet that’s something you’d like to see more of too.

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  3. TheConservativeDM says:

    You really have no idea who you’re talking to here, do you? I’m not some cringing conservative desperate for the approval of my lessers. You have no moral authority here. Add to that, you have no credibility here, either. You people don’t argue in good faith. You cram words in people’s mouths, and You. Always. Lie.

    I know what your call for a PM service or a voice call really is. Forget it. You want a conversation? Here it is – smeared across the blogoverse, twitter, and the G+ ghetto, where everybody can see it.

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    • I assure you that my call for a PM was only to make a conversation easier to have, not to say things in private that I wouldn’t say here. I may not know who I am talking to here, but that goes both ways; I am not a liar and I am not someone who throws my opinions at people. I’m here in good faith to talk about my game, a game I love dearly, and to offer my perspective on the topics raised. If you – as the moderator – are interested in that perspective, I’d be happy to continue posting. If not, just let me know and I won’t waste my time here.

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      • TheConservativeDM says:

        You should go ahead and keep up the jibber-jabber over at Cirsova’s blog. He’s a far more reasonable bloke than I am.

        Assuming for the moment that you are an honest broker here, it’s a damn shame the Left had to spend the last fifty years poisoning the well, isn’t it? You’re just another a victim of the constant barrage of disingenuous readings, gross mischaracterizations, and constant insults thrown by the political left to get their way. That’s the sort of thing that works great until it doesn’t, and when the other side catches on and refuses to be played for chumps any longer, it leaves the few honest brokers, like you (maybe), stuck with the baggage of their forebears.

        All I can say at this point is, consider picking more trustworthy allies. We love honest brokers on the alt-right…a little too much sometimes if you know what I mean, and I think you do*. If you’re twice the writer and triple the intellect of your co-author, you could be a real asset to the people fighting to save Western Civilization from the Narrativists.

        But good luck with your game. Really. I hope it gets published and into the hands of lots of people.

        * The human biodiversity guys. That’s who I mean.

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