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Ashiel's page

9,234 posts (9,237 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 alias.

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Sissyl wrote:

Cid was a jerky Tsundere (he acts like he doesn't like her, but he really does; yes Cid, like dwarves, is Tsundere). That's just kind of how it goes. It's too bad when people miss the reality of it because they're wearing tinted goggles, because there's a lot of interesting facets to human interactions.

Another thing that bugs the hell out of me is fact that the arguments in videos like Anita Sarkeesians, is that they are biased, and factually untrue. Why? Because if you apply the criticisms evenly across both genders, then the entirety falls apart. But what she does is ignores all examples of the same when it's a male character, only applies it to female characters, and then acts like there's some grand conspiracy going on when she only talks about instances where female characters are in these situations.

Like the Damsel in Distress bit. This is her definition of a damsel in distress, taken from a transcript of her first video.

Anita Sarkeesian: DID-1 wrote:
As a trope the damsel in distress is a plot device in which a female character is placed in a perilous situation from which she cannot escape on her own and must be rescued by a male character, usually providing a core incentive or motivation for the protagonist’s quest.

Notice that to be qualified, you must be female. Thus if a male was in the same position, it gets a pass, because it's not a woman. Instantly, from the very first definition, shows the logical consistency problem. If you're only going to count one sex, you're going to end up with obviously skewed numbers.

For example, Hal Emmerich from Metal Gear Solid pretty much fits right into the Damsel in Distress definition, except he (theoretically) has a penis.

Continuing on, in her second video...

Anita Sarkeesian: DID-2 wrote:
As a trope the damsel in distress is a plot device in which a female character is placed in a perilous situation from which she cannot escape on her own and then must be rescued by a male character, usually providing an incentive or motivation for the protagonist’s quest.

Again, qualification requires specific gender. Everyone from Hal Emmerich to Cloud Strife to Mario falls into this definition, and several female characters serve as the rescuer, but those characters like Aya Brea and Tifa Lockheart don't get to count as the heroes either because they're not men (and for it to work, according to Anita, it must be man rescuing woman or it doesn't get counted).

It's sexist against both genders. It doesn't give credit where it is due and it's biased based entirely on gender. If you're a woman, by her position, you don't qualify to be a counterweight because you're a woman, and if you're a man in distress, you don't qualify because you're a man. Likewise she doesn't even discuss the man saving man or woman saving woman things that crop up as well.

It's just a steaming pile.

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Lemmy wrote:
Well... I don't think I'll be playing FF7 again anytime soon... Or any game in the FF franchise, to be honest... I think its combat mechanics aged poorly and I lack the time and patience to play a game with 120 hours.

As far as the combat mechanics go, I've found that it's highly amusing to set the battle speeds of the game to their maximum, and in some cases change the battles to active. In some of games (especially VII with it's very smooth battle system) it makes the ATB system much more exciting. I recently replayed VII and IX (I never finished 9 because my old PS1 was literally played to death and died during my playthrough of it, so I've been playing it using my computer and being reminded of how freaking amazing and detailed old games were) and it's very helpful, though the delay in actions in FF9 is much more noticeable, whereas in FF VII it's very smooth.

BTW, FF6 is the best of all! FF7 is great (but overrated). FF8 sucks! FF9 is great (but underrated), FFX is okay. FFX-2 is pretty bad. FF12 had the most fun combat mechanics but was "meh".

I love both FF6 and FF7 for both the story and gameplay. I've been really enjoying FF9 thus far because of the setting and beautiful details, and the gameplay has been pretty awesome too (I really like the interactivity with the world, and even little things like finding a few gil on the ground are oddly satisfying); however, I gravitate more towards FF2, FF5, FF6, and FF9 because of the character customization that those games provide. One of my biggest complaints with FF9 has been the lack of active influence on how you play in your battles. Most of the customization comes in a variety of passive support skills; whereas in FF5 you had job-classes which could be selected or even mixed in some cases; FF6 had the esper system which allowed you to customize your magic loadout and/or growth of your characters, and FF7 had the best system IMHO with its materia-system where you could redefine any character's purpose and capabilities (and the level of depth in the combat was incredible).

I've been trying to replay FF8 as well but it's hard. Not hard as in difficult gameplay, but it's really hard to get into it, mostly for the reasons you cite. I've never gotten particularly far into it for a variety of reasons, but the junction system was less than super thrilling for me, and I wasn't particularly interested in any of the characters. I loved Cloud in FF7, but Squall was just kind of there. Quistis and Zell I really liked though. I should give it another go however.

Sissyl wrote:
What really stinks in FF7 is Cid's treatment of his female assistant. I mean, ewww.
Yeah, he was kinda of an a$!$!$#. Although it wasn't because she was female, IIRC. (Admittedly, I don't even remember what happens to her).

Yeah, it was because she kept him from going ahead with the mission, and he cut the launch because she refused to leave the room with a possibly broken oxygen (or maybe it was fuel) tank and told him to go ahead and launch as she didn't care if she died. He aborted the launch because he didn't want her to die.

It's also worth noting that for the most part, Cid was kind of an asshat to everybody. He's got a mouth on him that makes Barret look like a nun, and a will to use it. When you return and actually fly in the rocket, the oxygen tank malfunctions and Cid finds that she was right. IIRC, I think he apologizes if you return but I can't recall.

The long and short of it is A) he wasn't a dick to her because of her being female, B) he was a dick to everyone, C) their relationship was amusing because it looked like they would hate each other but were actually pretty close, D) she was so nonchalant about everything and that contrasted yet complemented his overbearing and excitably loud attitude. The only person who was going to hang out with Cid in their own time was in fact going to be someone with very thick skin (and she was that person).

Their mutual character interaction was a lot deeper than "I man, you woman, fix the g&#*!~n tea, ug". :P

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AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:
Ashiel wrote:

Tifa Lockheart (FF7). Tough as nails, independent, and she ends up rescuing her love and the main character, helping him to overcome mental illness and paralysis that he cannot on his own. In addition to being integral to the entire plot, she's intelligent, strong willed, and courageous.

Oh, well I didn't know you were going to go to other games to get your examples, but yeah Squaresoft is pretty awesome... although, I will say that (and it's why I quoted Tifa) a woman I am no longer friends with hated Tifa, mainly cause as tough as she was, she was also in your face DD's compared to every other female character in FF7 being much smaller chested. I mean, I like Tifa don't get me wrong, but I did kinda see her point.

I'm going to share a secret with you. People have different bust sizes. Strange, I know. Another, even greater secret, is that there's nothing wrong with big breasts, or the women that have them. Tifa also had brown hair, and auburn eyes. It was scandalous.

It amuses me how a woman can hate another woman, or the depiction of another woman because of her bust size. Perhaps it's jealous insecurity, or the hatred of sexuality? I dunno. All I know is, if that woman hated Tifa because of her cup size instead of who she was as a person, then her opinion doesn't matter to me anyway.

There's nothing wrong with being sexy. Cloud and Barret are sexy. Why is it only women who have a problem with other women being sexy? I don't have anything against Cloud for being sexy. Or Barret. Or Rufus. Or Sephiroth.

As for Parasite Eve, OMG I love Parasite Eve! I even have the DVD of the movie (yes, the movie, if you haven't seen it you should. It's based more directly on the book (the games are sequels to the book), and it's therefore the story of what happened in Tokyo right before Aya and her sister had their accident and needed organ transplants...)

I haven't seen the movie, but I go back and replay PE I from time to time. I've been meaning to play through PE II, but I just can't get into the gameplay portion nearly as much. I prefered PE to be PE, not Resident Evil the RPG.

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AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:

a wife who cheats on her husband with the yoga instructor, a daughter that works as webcam girl and calls herself "Tracey Suxx" who later tries to get into porn movies, etc. The point is, even among ALL the bad portrayals of everyone, there isn't a single non-sex based portrayal of women in that game.

And now, it bears saying I have no problem with strippers, prostitutes, porn stars, especially not webcam girls... but when that along with a cheating wife (oh and she's an ex-stripper whose husband bought her implants even before she quit and married him) and an ex-FIB (GTA world's equivalent of FBI) agent who once dated and slept with a thug to get close to his operation and ends up dead is all the game has

So 4 x 3 = 12

Spoilers Beyond This Line
Aeris Gainsburough (FF7). If you've played FFVII for about 30 minutes you might think Aeris is a "damsel", since there are evil government guys after her and the main character is supposedly supposed to "protect her". If you've played for more than 30 minutes, however, you'll find that she actually ends up doing more of the escorting than the main character during her period of "needing rescuing". She's basically Jesus. Even when your team defeats the BBEG, she's the one that saves the world.

Tifa Lockheart (FF7). Tough as nails, independent, and she ends up rescuing her love and the main character, helping him to overcome mental illness and paralysis that he cannot on his own. In addition to being integral to the entire plot, she's intelligent, strong willed, and courageous.

Agrias Oaks (FFT). Agrias is a Holy Knight that serves as the lead bodyguard of Princess Ovelia. After discovering a conspiracy involving the church and the royal family and an ancient evil, she joins with the main character. She is far from eye candy, is honorable, disciplined, and one of the strongest characters in the game.

Miluda (FFT). A freedom fighting rebel fighting for equality between the peasantry an the nobility. She is courageous and principled and dies fighting for her beliefs. Despite being a minor character in the grand scheme, her death influences the other characters deeply (altering the perceptions of the protagonists and jarring their faith in the system).

Altima (FFT). The end boss and most powerful enemy in final fantasy tactics. An angel of death and destruction, she commands all the Lucavi. She's basically a cosmic superbeing with attitude. She is the strongest single enemy that you can fight during the course of the game.

Side Note: Female characters in FFT are actually stronger than their male counterparts because they have more tactical options in the game, including several female-only weapons, accessories, headgears that grant incredible status buffs and in some cases literally makes it impossible to be slain (one of the perfumes gives you constant re-raise, which means you auto-revive when killed by HP damage).

Aya Brea (Parasite Eve). Despite being sexy in a lot of ways, Aya is pretty much the opposite of everything resembling Anita's complaints, though I suppose "violence against women" might be a thing since there's stuff trying to kill you (Aya) the entire game. She's a police officer that ends up fighting through hell and back to protect people, and she's tough, smart, relatable, and wears t-shirt, jeans, and a leather jacket through most of the game. She generally ends up saving all the damnsels (read as "everyone" and "mostly men") throughout the game, and if you complete the EX content, the only time she's ever saved by anyone in a fight she couldn't conceivably win was through the help of another woman, her sister.

Mitochondria Eve (Paraite Eve). The villain of parasite eve. Basically carries out and effectively succeeds at her plan at pretty much every step of the way, and is only able to be contested and defeated by Aya. She basically wrecks everybody. She's also pretty damn cool.

Emilia (Saga Frontier). Is framed for the murder of her fiance and sentenced to life in prison in one of the many realms. Along with two of her fellow female friends, ends up escaping through their ingenuity and combat skill. Goes on to look for the one who framed her and killed her fiance, eventually tracking down the culprit to find a bit of a surprise waiting. Regardless, she's also a pretty epic lady, and so are her two main buddies. She can also recruit a number of other powerful female friends of desired.

Asellus (Saga Frontier). A human girl who is captured by a powerful mystic, the ruler of mystics, known as the charm lord. Due to a blood transfusion from the evil charm lord himself, she becomes a half-mystic, and inherits abilities associated with it. She is to be one of his concubines but decides to leave instead, where she ends up on a whirlwind adventure across the realms while being hounded by lots of minions of the charm lord, and eventually ends up rescuing a human girl (who begins Asellus' story by reciting the tale of her). She has three different endings, wherein she can either decide to live as a human, go on embracing her entirety (IMHO the best ending, YMMV), or embrace the mystic lifestyle (in which case she overthrows the charm lord and claims all of his concubines as her own, and is kind of a jerk).

Terra (FF6). A mysterious woman with magic, initially ends up being the #1 interest of a corrupt empire due to her power. She initially suffers from amnesia due to the effects of a mind-altering device used to try to control her, which results in her being rescued, but mostly so her rescuers can beg for her help. Later her memory returns and you find that she's a grade-A badass superpowered awesome-folk.

Celes (FF6). A former general of a corrupt empire, she was branded a traitor after she protested the horrors that their nation was inflicting on the world. A powerful magic knight, she is rescued on accident (one of the other main characters happens to be passing through and releases her), but she quickly becomes the big deal in the subplot where the two are involved, being both potent at melee and magical combat. Her unique runic sword ability and magic expertise is pretty necessary. Later she is responsible for reuniting all the heroes to save the world.

Quistis Trepp (FF8). A professor at the Balamb Garden institute that trains the SEED special forces for which the main character is a member of, Quistis is the main character's senior, instructor, and outranks him initially. It's also noted that she is something of a prodigy as she is very accomplished for her age. She's also damn skilled with a violin, and generally instructs you on how things work early on. She eventually opts to go with you rather remain an instructor. She also possesses a coed fanclub called the Treppies.

That's 12 female characters who are awesome, not portrayed in bad ways, and/or not presented as sexual objects. That's just from one developer's games alone (Squaresoft).

And here's a bonus one. While GTA is pretty rotten all around (intentionally), you might find more suitable with Miss Bonnie McFarlane in another of Rockstar's Titles: Red Dead Redemption; or the wife of the protagonist. Both are really great characters, and neither of them have anything to be ashamed of. John Marston's wife was a saloon gal (as in a prostitute), but if you consider who Marston was, he wasn't exactly a polished pearl either (but as Marston and his wife show, having a past that neither is proud of isn't the measure of your worth in the present; though honestly I have nothing against strippers or prostitutes, regardless of gender).

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Aranna wrote:
Will this happen overnight? Of course not. But doing something simple like removing sexism would definitely encourage the change sooner. Do you really NEED every girl in your game to be a sex object or a victim? Of course not. Can some of the girls fill this role without it becoming sexist? Yes. But show us as people... not all girls are victims. Girls can also be heroes.

Um, do hardcore games? Assuming we're talking about non-casual games, I immediately think of non-casual games I've played.

Almost All RPGs Loaded with awesome females who are rarely around for mere sex appeal and/or victim roles. This ranges from most any classic Squaresoft titles through the Baldur's Gate Series through modern RPGs like Dragon Age Origins.

Almost All Fighting Games Virtually every fighting game has several female fighters, most of which tend to be just as good and powerful as their male counterparts. One of the most oft-criticized for blatant sex-appeal being Ivy from Soul Calibur, yet she is one of the strongest characters in most SC games. Fighting games in general don't generally have a lot of character depth for male characters either (and are also exaggerated to various levels of idealization).

FPS like Battlefield You spend your entire time running around unable to see your character. When you do, they're covered in body armor. Sometimes (like in the Halo series) you aren't even human. The first spartan you see in the Halo animation movies is a...

Racing Games Games like Dirt, Grid, etc...well, you're in a car.

I would dare bet that for every game you can point out a female character that is a "sex object" or "victim", I can point out 3 female characters that aren't, or 3 male characters that are (or some combination in between). I'm going to bet on a 3 to 1 basis, just based on the games I've played since I've been alive. And I think 3 to 1 is a really "safe bet" as I think that it's actually probably easier to list more, but I'm assuming that maybe I'll be surprised.

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Christina Hoff Sommers the Feminist. A feminist of a different era. A feminist I can agree with, get behind, who has integrity, honesty, is ethical, and insists on using reason and logic to determine course of action and policy. A woman who believes in equity for everyone. Someone that I would be proud to stand beside, with a strength of character I would admire in anyone.

I love how you think her message to girls is good in any way. Basically she is telling us to shut up and accept sexism as legitimate because that is what "male gamer culture"?

Far from it. In fact she describes the gaming culture as being one of the most inclusive where aspects such as race or gender take a back seat to ability; one that actually matches what I've seen at the gaming expos in my area. Nobody excludes women. We like seeing women sit down next to us, grab a controller, and dive into games with us. What doctor Sommers has pointed out is that there is no evidence that video games or the subculture is making men racist, misogynist, or homophobic. In truth, evidence suggests that "millennial-male" growing up constantly exposed to video games are actually more inclusive and less prejudiced than any before them.

She is also fair, because she looks at it from across the coin. How would women feel if men started attacking female-centered shows, magazines, and so forth in the same fashion people like Anita Sarkeesian have been attacking the gaming culture.

She also remarks on while the ratio of hardcore gamers is 7 to 1, there is a small but distinct and cool group of women that make up that other 8th; and she notes that games don't care about your age, sex, ethnicity, race, or sexual preference. Gaming is one of the places that you can honestly and without doubt have both sexes compete and thrive in, such as Marie-laure Norindr (or her handle "Kayane"), or perhaps you've heard of Kayo Police? She's actually beaten Daigo's Ryu with C. Viper. It was epic to watch and a close match, but she seized a commanding lead with a rather brutal and relentless claim on his life bar. Heheh.

So that makes it ok? The message she is sending is 'Sorry girls go back to your beauty magazines and stay away from gaming that is a boy thing'. I LIKE gaming IS it SO WRONG to want some representation in the hard core gaming area? Even miss male character is a huge step in the right direction. I don't expect flowery dialog in a FPS game even if they include a girl avatar option... I just want the avatar option (the dialog can come in RPGs). Let more girls enjoy gaming in a less sexist way and I suspect over the years it will become less and less one sided gender wise. Contrary to popular belief we would love to blast some bad guys to let off steam from time to time... just give us the chance without all the angry attacks from the internet.

I wonder why there's suddenly this backlash from male gamers? I'm sure it couldn't be because of the divisive righteous anger of people in response to crap like Anita Sarkeesian's sexist and fundamentally flawed line of reasoning, and the storm of media controversy painting it all as "women vs gamers" (which is really freaking insulting by the way, because there are a lot of women gamers, and trans-women gamers by the way).

...crap, now after talking about the match between Daigo and Rayo, I have an urge to play some fighting games. I've been kind of itching to play some Soul Calibur lately, but the girl I usually play with is out of town, and it's her copy of Soul Calibur that we play (she brings it over and we play on our X-Box). I should see if I can dig up my copy of Street Fighter EX+Alpha (my sister and I used to play that game all the time) or Soul Calibur II (my sis used to play this one with us frequently as well) since it'll play on my sister's Wii; but my sister has been hanging it with her boyfriend in all her free time so; I guess I'll need to ask my brother if he'd be down for some Street Fighter IV, or see if my buddy Jay wants to play (he might bring over his copy of SSFIV-Tournamnet-whatever it was).

Actually, if you have Hamachi, we could probably play Street Fighter Alpha II via ZSNES netplay features. Wanna play?

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thejeff wrote:
Sissyl wrote:
So how many male privilege equal one able-bodied privilege? You would just have to set up an exchange table and then you could mathematically assign levels of victimhood to everyone! Even better, this could be tracked online like the stock market prices so you could be certain to have a spot victimhood value that depends on the current changes in the various victim labels! It would be equally applicable in precisely every situation! Just think of the efficiency gains inherent in not having to wonder if someone is more or less a victim than you are!

Look up intersectionality. They don't add up or replace each other. There's no "victimhood value" involved.

A rich black woman is obviously better off than a homeless white male. No one is arguing otherwise. But that doesn't mean that she doesn't still have to deal with racism and sexism.

Doesn't mean he doesn't either. Which is where the underlying problem with your position rears its ugly head. It's only racist when it's against a non-white, and only sexist when it's against a non-male. A bigoted double-standard if there ever was.

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Aranna wrote:

Hold on there this is hypocrisy.

You are demanding an impossible standard for real feminists while giving men who would never help women get an equal share the pass.


You can only argue so many issues before your viewpoint becomes diluted and irrelevant.

"The (unmolested) data shows that there is some unfairness. Let's fix it," isn't exactly spreading your viewpoint very thin. You must have an excessively cynical view on the capabilities of the conscious human mind.

I would LOVE to see the reaction you would get if you said "shut up and also help all those other people who are suffering too like Latinos, disadvantaged white children, or women" to all those mobs fighting for equal rights for blacks. I have never met a real feminist who didn't care that some boys were being mistreated and if presented with an opportunity to make things better wouldn't have hesitated to do so. BUT those little steps forward that Dr Sommers likes to point to as proof we should all shut up would NEVER have happened without real feminists bringing those issues forward. Sexism is the single largest -ism facing the world today not just for the appalling treatment of women in third world countries but also the way we are still treated here at home in the first world. The time for us to shut up will be when inclusivity and equality is the NORM not the outlier. It gets real annoying being a real feminist when on one side you have fake feminists like Dr. Sommers saying every thing is roses and the other tiny few but VERY vocal extreme feminist man haters out there making bad press...

Dr. Sommers was a feminist when feminism actually meant something. The woman is a 60 year old professor of philosophy and ethics (something a few feminists today could definitely use today). She represents a purer, uncorrupted, brand of feminism that is based in rational thought and higher standards of data collection and presentation.

I'm sorry she has been too busy doing things like trying to help ensure the equal quality of education and open discussion for students in America, rather than tackling the real feminist issues like how oppressed Princess Peach is.

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thejeff wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Male Privlidge implies that its a 1 way street: that everything is better if you're male. This is simply not the case.

I'd say it means you're better off overall. Not in every single way. There are always exceptions.

And just to point at one thing, tied into the point about feminism fighting against gender roles in general: It's feminists who've been pushing to let women into the military and into combat roles in particular. Not trying to keep themselves safe and get men blown to smithereens.

That's right. And some of them are honest about it too, like Miss Sommers who has also been pushing for better education in schools for boys who are getting an unfair shake. She's being real. She's being honest, and the ones who like to throw around words like "patriarchy" do what they can to shut her down for it.

How are those feminists doing on rectifying those other problems? How many of them are going to line up and demand to be put on draft lists if it ever comes to that? How many of them are going to insist that the floor be raised for those males that BNW points out; the ones who end up homeless or struggling? How many of them are fighting for the rights of fathers for their children, or rallying against the injustice of the legal system in regards to men vs women?

*crickets chirping*

I see women like Christina Sommers and Karen Straughan and I am impressed. I can agree with them and they make good sense. And they do it with reason and integrity.

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JurgenV wrote:

Thanks Ashiel, i thought maybe i was being oversensitive reading that the same way.

Words matter, they have meaning and set the tone. A single word can make the whole page have a different meaning or tone.

You're welcome. I was involved in an incident of child molestation that went unreported (I was the child, I hope that much is obvious) and will go unreported (I think the situation was complicated and I harbor no ill will towards the other person), but it, along with accounts from my grandfather, and knowing other people who have been subjected to certain things, that these things do happen.

While I'm not upset with thejeff or even mechaPoet themselves, I will say that that particular exchange did upset me. It upset me that mechaPoet just reduced your experiences into fuel to toss out the word misogyny again because the apparent quota of hypocrisy had not been met today. I recognized how that would make me feel if someone had said "Oh well you were a little boy, molested by a woman -- it doesn't happen enough to matter / it was because of hatred against women / you were a boy so you must have enjoyed it". I've had at least one friend who became privy to my experiences who said it would have been worse if it was a man who molested me or if I was a little girl. It didn't make me feel very nice, I'm sorry to report.

I'm not asking for pity, or sympathy, or any sort of righteous anger against anyone for any perceived wrongs. What I am saying is I think that the world is complex and rarely black and white, and I sympathize with you, and I believe that your experience matters and is just as important as anyone else's.

I believe we need to focus on being more inclusive, tearing down our false walls, and attacking the problems directly. People are complex creatures and we need to let them be more open, more free, and help everyone. Some of this involves forgiveness, and all of it involves honesty.

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thejeff wrote:
And you're horribly upset at me for saying the same thing you're saying.

I'm not horribly upset with you. I just am unimpressed with your claims, and I'm unimpressed with your methods. I find them dishonest and reeking of hypocrisy in most cases. Even now, instead of taking responsibility for the reason why others view your stance as driven by agenda and bias, you're trying to side-step and reflect.

Why would we want to be a part of that? We're working on it in our own, inclusive way. We have no needs for divisive drivel.

I'm not convinced that they face more limitations and more damaging ones yet either (most of the evidence presented for that seems pretty fishy), and and I think a lot of publicity is given to one rather than the other.

The fact that violence against men is so under-reported, ignored, and/or suppressed is quite telling. Is that not oppression? Why can we not want equality for all, instead of equality for all but?

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thejeff wrote:
He said, and I agree, that the thing you describe is an aspect of the same attitude. Not "hatred against women", but the sexist attitude that prescribes gender roles. Men are supposed to be tough and sexually aggressive. Women are supposed to be weak, non-violent and definitely not sexually aggressive. Men weak enough to be beaten or raped by women aren't really men.

Yep. Super sexist. And I agree 100%. Funny that, right? All us ignorant yahoos over here and our agreeing with things being problems and yet we can't agree with you. Sexism, again, swings both ways. I don't want anyone to suffer. Ever. Both sexes suffer at the hands of sexism and that needs to be addressed for certain, but again, we might disagree on the methods.

It's all part of the same thing. It's the same thing you're talking about, even if you don't see it. Breaking those gender stereotypes is a good part of what feminism is about and has been for decades.

It is also what I've been about for my entire life really. My sister and I played with hot wheels, legos, Barbie dolls, Polly Pockets, and we watched X-Men and Spiderman and Winnie the Pooh and Rainbow bright. Stereotypes can die in a fire. I also agree with the old feminism movements. Everyone should be able to be an independent citizen, with the right to vote, to own property, to work an honest job for an honest wage, etc. I believe in Miss Sommers' level-headed quest for the improvement and equality of everyone.

I don't believe in what you're selling. I don't believe in what the tumblr feminists are selling. I am disgusted by what I read on feminist bees about a year ago. There is a disconnect here, and it's not because of our being part of the problem, it's that we find your medicine to be poisonous and we don't want to drink.


It's the same kind of attitude that pushes women towards certain (generally lower paying) occupations and pushes men away from them - shaming men who do "women's work" or worse, are "house-husbands".

It's the same prejudice. Twisted around and pointed in the other direction, but the same roots.

Yep. But as you yourself notes it goes both ways. Both sexes are victims of this collective stupidity. It's significantly harder for men to get jobs working with children for example. People assume than men have dark motives if they hang out with children, enjoy being around children, or seek a profession that deals with children (especially young children).

It works both ways.

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More cool-headed points on the pay-gap thing by Miss Sommers.
The Gender Wage Gap is a Myth.

The reason I've come to have so much respect for Miss Sommers in such a short amount of time is she seems to be a no-BS sort of person, and ends her lecture on how women are best served by good information and accurate data, rather than crap (paraphrasing the latter half of that sentence).

If Miss Sommers said, "There is a disparity here, we should look into this," I'd instantly take it seriously. If one of the tumblr feminists tried to rally for the same thing, I'd probably assume a skeptical posture immediately. That's a learned response, and there is no one to blame but themselves.

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thejeff wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
thejeff wrote:
For salary negotiation, there is evidence that's part of it, there's also evidence that when women negotiate for higher salaries they tend not to get them as often as men and are more likely not to get the job in first place. People react to men and women differently. Men taking tough negotiating stances are often seen as take charge go-getters. Women are often seen as pushy.
That may be true, but again, men do tend to be more abrasive than women, and often feel more comfortable pushing for better salaries and whatnot. That's not to say that women are less capable of doing the same, just it's not as common for it to happen.

How much of that is because they get better results. Not because they're more or less capable, but because people respond differently.

Of course, it's easier just to blame women. No need to think there might be anything left of the sexism that was legal, socially acceptable and widely practiced a generation or two ago. Even though there are still plenty of people around, I'm sure that's all completely gone now.

There's tons of sexism that's legal. I'm 99.99% positive Lemmy actually just referenced blatant sexism in the legal system. It just wasn't against women, so you act like it doesn't matter or ignore it; which is why I think yours and mechaPoet's position is bigoted.

I mean look at yourselves.

mechaPoet wrote:
JurgunV wrote:
mecaPoet wrote:
-when these people suffer this violence, it often isn't taken as seriously, e.g. women facing slut-shaming when they are raped, from their communities and legal systems
Try being a male rape victim, domestic abuse victim or white victim of a hate crime if you think those groups have it so bad. The police will flat out tell you they will not help, the perp will not see any punishment and i say this from experience.
I'm not saying that men who experience rape and domestic abuse somehow "don't count" or don't face stigma in reporting these crimes or being taken seriously for it. But the reasons for this are still rooted in sexism and misogyny. Because men are supposed to be "manly and tough" and women are supposed to be "weak and non-violent," violence committed by women against men is dismissed because femininity is seen as weak and undesirable. Men who are raped by women are seen as "getting lucky," because our insane paradigm of sexual discourse says that men should be having as much sex as they possibly can with women. Men who suffer from domestic abuse aren't taken seriously because men are supposedly inherently able to defend themselves, and because women aren't as often seen as "seriously" capable of violence. The moral of the story for these male victims is that they don't count because they "aren't real men," or because "real men don't act like this."

Look at this s%~@. One acts like one side is the only victim and suffering for X, Y, Z. The other points out that both sides are being victimized for X, Y, and Z, and what happens? The first immediately redirects it into all being caused by sexism (yes) and the hatred of women (whoa now, wait, what?).

That's right. This is the kind of mindset that I'm seeing you guys displaying. When bad things happen to women it's because of the hatred of women, and when bad things happen to's also because of the hatred of women.

Does. Not. Compute.

Sexist I can agree with. Sexism swings both ways, it's not a one-way street. Yet here is mechaPoet framing this in such a way as to make it seem like it's because of hatred and sexism against women, undermining and marginalizing the suffering of others for his own agenda. Literally taking an example that runs contrary to his argument of unfair gendered bias against women, and then declaring it be because of unfair gendered bias against women. It's sick. It's disrespectful. It's hurtful. It's sexist and it's bigoted. It's refusing to acknowledge the validity of other people's suffering and experiences because it doesn't conform to his neo-feminist ideology which is innately bigoted and sexist from the ground up.

Bad things happen to everyone. We should be honestly, earnestly, trying to work these things out rationally. We need to accept that violence happens to everyone (including sexual violence; my grandfather told me in confidence once to be careful and be on guard, because he was raped by a woman when he was a taxi driver. She pulled a gun on him and had her way with him. It was frightening, scary, and he felt violated and ashamed, and felt like he couldn't tell anyone; he told me he never even told my grandmother about it because he was afraid that she would view it as his fault or that he consented to it. And he asked that I not tell anyone else about it, because he still didn't want to speak openly about it, but that he wanted me to be careful and be aware so I wouldn't get hurt).

This sensationalism and pointing fingers isn't going to solve problems. It drives us apart. I think all sexism should die. I think it should be perfectly expected and natural for both sexes to enjoy be benefits of both sexes, and then we will be a unified whole. Not men, or women, but human beings; where human beings can be tough, and strong, and gentle, and emotional. Where two people are equal in the law instead of being treated like a different crime was committed depending on which gender they belong to.

So I'll continue to push for helping everyone and moving past these issues, and you can go on doing as you like. There is a reason why "modern feminists" are seen as they are and why a lot of us want to have nothing to do with them. There is a reason my sister would be angry if you called her a feminist. There's a reason Sommers has to try and salvage what can be salvaged by trying to restore credibility and reality to the issues.

And that reason is not bigotry.

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Lemmy wrote:
I have never, literally never, seen "Check Your Privilege" used by someone who had a legitimate argument.

And yet they wonder why their movement drives people away from them, and makes sane-feminists have to stand up and be like "I'm a feminist, but I'm not that kind of feminist".

On a side note, there's something amusing about the Hellsing Abridged w/ Rip Van Winkle. Do you know who Alucard is fighting against in that series? :P

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What's up human beings, goblins, and gnomes!?
*flops down after getting home from work and crackin' open a strawberry nesquick he splurged a little to buy*

Miss me? I know I missed you guys. I spent a fair amount of time today at work thinking about all of this discussion. So far it's made me ecstatically happy because it makes me appreciate how much I love everyone that I see on a day to day basis, and why that's special. One of the ladies who comes into our store called me her brother and wanted a hug. After this thread, I guess that just feels so much more...magical.

*sips strawberry nesquick and leans back against the backrest of the wooden chair*

Having had a chance to see the world as thejeff and mechaPoet have been presenting it, I concur. I am incredibly lucky, and privileged, in my life. So very, very privileged. *sighs serenely*
With everything that's happened lately, this is truly a moment that I can be very pleased, and very happy, to be who I am, where I am, and live the way I do, with the people I do. It makes me happy to stand where I stand, and all the more certain that it is where I want to stay.

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thejeff wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Again with the racism. If you don't think people "white" people are discriminated against, you need to do more research. Talk to some people. Get out there in the real world and ask. All racism is bad. They're actually about the only made-up supgrouping of people that it's discrimination against is effectively given a pass most of the time.
And there we go. It so often seems to come up from the "I don't see race" people. Pity those poor white folks.


Ashiel wrote:
AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:
When anyone, especially a white person, says "I don't see race." then you pretty much are dismissing and refusing to acknowledge that racism exists at all. It's the same for gender.

No. No you are not. In the same way that I viewed the transgendered woman from my story earlier as a woman with no bias, but was offended, disappointed in her cousin who refused to acknowledge her gender, and referred to her as his "gay ass cousin".

That incident right there makes your argument invalid. Because it is very much possible to not see race but to see bigotry in any form. It's no more impossible than to see others as the same race as you but discriminated against because of hair color, eye color, skin color, height, weight, or cultural origins.

I don't pity anyone. I said all bigotry is bad. It doesn't matter whether it is directed at people with light skin, dark skin, brown eyes, green eyes, blonde hair, or red hair, men, or women, religion, sexuality, or gender (or lack of any of these things).

You're committing bigotry by acting like bigotry towards one arbitrary unscientific subgroup isn't bigotry. That's why it's so damn destructive and why none of us are interested in standing beside you while you're spouting this nonsense.

I wouldn't mind signing up for Ms. Sommer's feminism though. This woman is clearly smart and balanced, but I prefer the term "equalism" more, because it has no connection with any gender. I think I would get along very, very well with Ms. Sommers and I would love to talk with her in person one day if possible.

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thejeff wrote:
I so love the "You're more racist/sexist since you keep noting racism and sexism" argument. It makes it so easy to dismiss any problems.

Nope. I'm talking about the constant implication that being X, Y, or Z means that you either either A) agree with us, or B) are ignorant and don't understand the truth.

That's bigoted, plain and simple. I didn't call him a racist or sexist, but that I said the things he was arguing definitely sounded such to me. What he is displaying is racist and sexist, and the side that he appears to be arguing for seems to be pushing for racism and sexism and exclusion, and I've yet to see anything that shows the contrary, rather than trying to justify the "privilege" arguments.

That and telling people how it's so racist to not be racist. That's always so welcome.

Why do I suspect that calling him racist and sexist might be part of the uncivil tone?

I said that I've seen him display more racism and sexism than most of the others. That's true, because see above. It's bigoted. I do believe that it's accidental though. Those who fight monsters and all that.

BTW, if I remember the context, he identified himself as male because people were using the wrong pronoun, not to help his argument. I know we're not supposed to even think about such things or notice whether other people are male or female or identify ourselves as either, but some of us are just to sexist to not do so.

Did he indeed?

mechaPoet wrote:
I'm a guy, and I would take playing a girl with a machine gun over playing a hyper-macho man 100% of the time. I do at every given opportunity. I don't know who that scowling white guy on the cover of the Mass Effect games is, but I know that Shepherd is a badass woman saving the galaxy from the Reapers.

Here he dismisses BroShep as not also a valid Shepherd (sexist), and just calls him some scowling white guy (racist). And you know, I would have probably just chocked this up to an anecdote that being a specific gender doesn't mean you always want to play a PC of the same gender, which might be an argument by some of the marketing points.

But then he makes statements like "scowling white guy" and "I know that Shephard is a badass woman" and well, suddenly, I don't think it's an anecdote for inclusion, it's just more bigotry.

mechaPoet wrote:
When I say that I've been trying to keep a civil tone, I just mean that I hope that's how I've been perceived.

Oh really?


Which women can't relate to because women don't suffer from high rates of violence in comparison to men.

Oh wait.

Thank you Ms. Sommers.

Non-white people experience racism their entire lives, and to claim that you don't acknowledge race as a factor that effects them shows that you are ignoring the problems of racism they face.

Again with the racism. If you don't think people "white" people are discriminated against, you need to do more research. Talk to some people. Get out there in the real world and ask. All racism is bad. They're actually about the only made-up supgrouping of people that it's discrimination against is effectively given a pass most of the time.


I will leave you all, especially Ashiel, one final link:

Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person (If it encourages you to read this article more, this is written by a white person who has experienced extreme poverty.)
Despite the title of the piece, I'm not assuming that you're white. But it does break down how there are different kinds of privilege, and that people can experience one kind of privilege while lacking another. Classism isn't talked about as much in the "-ism" discussions, unfortunately, but I hope this article can show you what is meant by the term "privilege" and how it can apply even to people who have hard lives. The way that these various kinds of privilege intersect is called intersectionality. So I'd like for you all to read this, or could just Rynjin-out and ignore it. I'd prefer the former, but that's probably pretty obvious.

Oh, I read it. I agree with some of it, and I disagree with some of it, and I think it's also pretty narrow in its scope. We can discuss that, if you want, or if you don't want to, then we won't. No biggie.

You can't expect me to think it pretty racist, however, when people are identifying or setting qualities towards characters as being "white guy" or "black guy" or whatever. Like Morgan Freeman said, "stop calling me a Black Man, and I'll stop calling you a White Man".

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mechaPoet wrote:
But anyway, I'm going to once again bow out of the conversation. I've tried to keep a civil tone, and to provide sources to back up a bunch of my claims (which isn't to say that other peeps haven't! Just trying to lay out what I've attempted, and to acknowledge that I may have had lapses in evidence and patience despite my best efforts). But I feel like this simply isn't proving as constructive a forum for this conversation as I would like.

Which part isn't constructive? I'm legitimately curious. So far, I've seen you display more sexism and racism than most of the other posters in the thread. You have been heavily emphasizing race and gender with almost every point, for example. You even felt the need to identify yourself as a male as if that somehow made your arguments more valid.

I'd definitely say that this conversation has been very civil. I'm wondering why you've "tried to keep a civil tone" but imply that you're failing to remain civil. What about this forum makes this unappealing to making your points? Why does the location of the discussion matter rather than the message? Why not here, or on the corner of the street, or in a school, or in an arcade?

Where would you prefer we had this conversation? Hopefully it's no where that would require me to travel, because I don't have the time and/or money to do so. Most of the money I make goes towards helping my family, where I live with my father, and my two siblings with cystic fibrosis, riding the wave of privilege as we pool our incomes to support each other under the mountain of bills and debts and the loss of my mother's paycheck when she died recently.

Is it just something wrong with this forum? Would you prefer another random forum of the internet?

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ElementalXX wrote:

I think the problem of the monk is that its really defensive in general. It has the best saves, inmunities to load of things and different ways of ac. The game however asumes the character has to be active so it incentives to play agresively.

Now why the monk sucks is not the class, its because:

Beign unarmored sucks and its quite unsoported.

Beign unarmed sucks and its quite unsoported.

The system has problems with this styles and how to make the work. The monk struggles to make them work but ultimately its still reliant on magic items to work. Now the monk doesnt really has a "role" its probably similar to fighter, its not an skillmonkey, its a fighter with better saves, but worst hit dice, but also worst damage potential.

Zen archer, beign ranged, get the damage output the regular monk lacks while retaining good defenses and is not married to the unarmed strike option.

The thing is, they really aren't really defensive in general. Their good saves are nice but the Barbarian and Paladin's are better, and the Ranger has earlier and better access to anti-magic and/or poisons, and in-house access to things like freedom of movement.

In terms of AC, monk AC sucks for most levels until they are very high level and expend a lot of money into their AC (like bracers of armor and such). By default, their AC is 10 + DexMod + WisMod, which is unlikely to be more than 16 if you're doing standard point buy (and is very swingy in random-generations). You need dual 18s to match the AC of a 1st level martial with a 14 Dex (chainmail + 2 dex = 18) and if they use a shield (AC 19 or 20) you're a long way behind. The ability to upgrade both armor and shield enhancements along the way drive the difference further.

I often wonder what people are talking about when they talk about monks being super defensive. It takes a lot of effort to get them to even catch-up to normal martials, and that's before considering how hamstrung their options are (normal, that is to say non-zen non-sohei monks have pitiful ranged attack options for example).

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On the subject of how people view modern feminism? This pretty much sums it up, and shows that there are feminists out there who are worth paying attention to. Just not on tumblr, or anyone who uses the term "check your privilage".

Christina Hoff Summers on why she calls herself a feminist.

They're driving wedges not just between different arbitrary subgroups, but between each other as well.

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AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:
When anyone, especially a white person, says "I don't see race." then you pretty much are dismissing and refusing to acknowledge that racism exists at all. It's the same for gender.

No. No you are not. In the same way that I viewed the transgendered woman from my story earlier as a woman with no bias, but was offended, disappointed in her cousin who refused to acknowledge her gender, and referred to her as his "gay ass cousin".

That incident right there makes your argument invalid. Because it is very much possible to not see race but to see bigotry in any form. It's no more impossible than to see others as the same race as you but discriminated against because of hair color, eye color, skin color, height, weight, or cultural origins.

Ascending above such petty nonsense doesn't prevent you from seeing it with your bird's eye view. If anything it opens the gate to hate it even more, because you realize how truly asinine it is. There is no ground for bigotry to stand on. The ability to cling to belief that there are things that make "they, and them" different from "we, and us" falls apart. You can't say "We are innately different", you have to acknowledge things like social and economic trends rather than race, and you have to see every act of bigotry as being worthy of scorn on its own scale, and be honest that bigotry can and does happen to everyone.

SO, you say "some of us are already there?" Well, then please come back from there and stand with us, and help the rest of the world join us there.

And you will NEVER solve the problem of bigotry in any form, be it discrimination based on features such as hair, skin, eyes, height, weight, or what reproductive organs you have; nor any based off of gender (or lack thereof), sexuality, religion (or lack thereof), philosophy, culture, or geographical origins; nor based on interests, academia, or sub-cultures, by browbeating them, demanding they "check their privilege", and making blanket statements and stereotypes across a given subcategory. All you do is breed more hate.

If you have someone that falls into a given sub-category, and then someone treats them like their experiences, their thoughts, their lives, their wills do not matter; tells them that they have it so easy and didn't have to work for what they have; tells them that they are innately rape-mongering monsters; or pretty much just tells them how much of an a&$~$++ and a problem they are, you are going to get a whole new ocean of people who were otherwise indifferent to the whole mess filled with a lot of righteous anger and contempt.

It is human nature to strike back when you are being struck and to feel gratified for righting a perceived wrong against you. Which is why I will never, ever, stand on the side of anyone who even uses the term "check your privilege" in a non-parodying way. I will not stand on the side of people like the author of Feminist Bees who wants to spend a lot of time writing about how black people are like orcs and that makes nerds racist but acts like it doesn't make them racist*.

I get a lot more done through peaceful interaction, inclusion, and solid application of love and understanding. I treat others as I would treat myself, and I speak out against injustice where I see it. I have no time or energy to waste furthering the problems, which is exactly what I think this new breed of feminism does. Muslims and Christians didn't come to love each other from the crusades, so I don't see why anyone thinks these "moral crusaders" are going to get better results.

We agree with your ideal but we rebuke your methods. To us the ends do not justify the means, and we think there's a better method than burning the forest down.

Closing words by Morgan Freeman and a commentary on Orcs.
Racism by Morgan Freeman.

*: Orcs are a literary tool, a monstrous, physical representation of all that is or has ever been wrong with humanity. It is a practice dummy for standing against the evils of the world, a human-like creature that embodies all that is wrong, without singling out any real humans or cultures in the world in a way that would blur what they stand for.

Orcs are savage, brutal, cruel, murderous, rapacious, sexist, slaving, racist thieves that are dimwitted, short tempered, violent, and function by acting as barbaric hordes. They represent everything that is bad and none that is good. They are the monstrous reflection of the worst part of ourselves. So when I saw a particular moral crusader likening them to different racial subgroups, I was pissed. Genuinely disgusted and pissed, because that was the most racist thing I've ever seen or heard; to look at orcs and think "Gee, these guys are just the utmost scum, they must be a stand-in for non-white-males".

Yet gamers have pushed for orcs to be playable for every generation of the game. Most players that I've seen play orcs do so with a certain "Drizzt complex" in that their orcs are different from the rest, ready to rise above, because as human beings we want to see the possibility for good in others. We know, deep down, that if it thinks and feels it can learn to love and rise above darkness, no matter how far down the hole in started.

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As a card-carrying nerd, I've never wanted anything but to include more people in my nerd-dom. My usual D&D group when I was a teenager consisted of me, my sister, and three of our girlfriends. I've never met a nerd that didn't want to play with more people.

Makes me wonder how much the world changes in a span of a few state borders.

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mechaPoet wrote:
I also noticed that people keep assuming I'm female, and I'll tell you that you're wrong on that front, and you should go ahead and use male pronouns for me, if you use 'em.

It doesn't really matter. For the same reason that I don't bother to correct people when they refer to me by different gendered pronouns. This is a discussion between minds. What dangles or doesn't between your legs is completely irrelevant to the value of your thoughts.

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Orville Redenbacher wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Sissyl wrote:
Because it's horrible that men like to look at nekkid women?
Some of my girl friends and I talk about sex and swap porn. Which of us is more of a monster?
Need to hear more to be able to make a decision.

Well one of my girlfriends is really into some crazy stuff like vore, submission, and lolis, but that doesn't stop me from talking about it with her. Meanwhile another girlfriend of mine really likes sex, and despite being strait likes looking at pictures of hot women, and we had a fun time sitting in my den one day just browsing the foundry one night. Another girlfriend of mine and I would swap adult doujinshi links, and she was a big fan of most anything by Dr. Graevling and Clumzor (who doesn't like Clumzor, it's D&D-esque :P) and she would confide things like how she really wanted to forceful seizing and despoiling the lady from the Orbits commercials. One of my other girlfriends was big into furries and it really got her all hot and bothered, though I have trouble imagining a romantic relationship with someone who's head reminds me of my dog (to each her own, I guess).

We often talk about the joys of cuddling and stuff too, and sometimes about sexual techniques, and/or what we'd prefer (though humorously the one into the loli's and submission can't even manage to get through a short slashfic I wrote as a joke concerning one of my D&D characters and her psicrystal, 'cause she says it makes her too squirmy and toe-curly. Such a lightweight :P).

How's that? Which of us is the bad one? :P

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Sissyl wrote:
Because it's horrible that men like to look at nekkid women?

Some of my girl friends and I talk about sex and swap porn. Which of us is more of a monster?

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thejeff wrote:
It's fairly rare that I see something personally that reminds me. More common stuff on the news. OTOH, I'm a white guy. It's easy for me to miss things, because it's not my life.

That's right. It's not your life and you have no business telling other people who and what they should and should not identify with, enjoy, or be anymore than anyone else. You can call yourself a "white guy" if you want, and that's your choice.

I personally have never seen a white, or black person. I've seen a lot of people with varying skin tones that range from a pale pinkish to dark brown, and everything in between. I've seen people that change colors (especially with sun-tans), and people who were speckled or had different unique patterns.

But man, it's people like you that make it a harder world for the rest of us to live in, because you're so dead-set on separating people into arbitrary groups and then try to keep score between. We could all just play for the same team and win at life.

Is their negative discrimination? Yes, yes there is. I work retail and a young woman came into the store and walked up to the counter to buy something. She was kinda cute actually, and I thought her shoes were really cool, so I complimented her on her shoes (I could never pull off those shoes but she was rockin' 'em well). She giggled with a bit of embarrassment and after a moment I realized she was transgendered (but she was really good at "passing" as my other TG friends call it). I helped her out and told her to have fun, and she walked out pretty giddy.

Then her cousin came in and said "You ain't laughin' at my gay ass cousin are ya?". I told him I said I liked her shoes and told her to have a great night, and he said "Man don't call him that, that's a guy", which bothered me truly. He then said, "But he's family and you gotta stick together". I simply responded "Everyone needs somebody" and left it at that. Did it bother me that he didn't fully accept his cousin? Yeah, it did. I know it happens, and it shouldn't. That starts "at home" with taking responsibility for yourself and with each person the world changes.

You surely aren't going to rally anyone towards the call of equality by grouping them into arbitrary groups and then telling them how horrible the world is because of them. You don't make war on people because of skin color, sexual preferences, gender, etc; yet that's what some of these "feminists" do. Why should anyone take anything they say about equality seriously when they consistently lie and twist statistics and information to push their agenda, all while acting like you being any combination of white, male, or cisgendered makes you a monster (the more of those tags the worse you are)? It's not inclusion and it just makes matter worse. Salting the wounds and pointing fingers at people who in most cases have never done anything to anyone and condemning them for it.

If I had to describe my position in a word, I'd call it "Equalism". I have a position of inclusion. I'm not going to separate people into arbitrary groups not supported by science. I'm going to teach my children (if I ever have any) inclusion and love for everyone, and not this false "Treat those black people the same way" or "Don't be mean to the mexicans" b%&&&%##, but "Be nice to everyone" will surely be a thing.

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thejeff wrote:
In the long run, if everyone does it, not just lip service, but down to the ingrained subconscious prejudices and assumptions. Otherwise you just mask the existing problems.

Which is perpetuated by drawing lines between us. By splitting us into groups rather than just being humans and then telling each other how much worse or better they have it because way back when before any of us were born the world was full of asshats isn't helping anyone, it's picking at the scabs. You're fostering the ingrained subconscious prejudices and assumptions that you're supposedly fighting against.

Maybe it seems to you like we're already there. I live in New England and we're not there yet and I know it's worse in some other parts of the country.

Maybe someone should be working on those parts of the country, educating, and promoting inclusiveness and breaking down the walls.

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thejeff wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Oh right. One of those. Pretending that any acknowledgement of race is racism. When we abolish all the laws that distinguish between people based on race, we lose the ability to know what effects racism is having. If for example, you don't track the race of citizens stopped by police, you can't see if policing is biased.
Race is a lie.
You need the data to understand what's happening and then you need to be able to have laws to address what the data shows you.

But not different penalties. And it's nice when the data isn't misrepresented for an agenda. But I think we can both agree with that.

But actually yes. Acknowledging race IS racism. It's the statement that you are different from I and belong in a different subgroup of humanity because you have a different skin color than I do.

It's as asinine as forming into groups because we have green eyes, or brown hair, or height. Teaching people that we are all people however does. We have lived a tribal existence for too long.

If you want to be strictly biological about it, sure. Race is a lie.

Racism however, is very real.

Racism is a symptom of a disease. Biologically, yes, race is a lie. There's no more to race than there is to hair and eye color, and most would think someone insane if they started talking about "the green eyed race".

Human beings have lived a tribal existence for a very long time. It's very possible that we are engineered to prioritize those of our own tribe over those of another, sometimes violently. Studies of our closest biological relatives the chimpanzees suggest this may be true in that groups of wild chimpanzees are often very caring and nurturing to their own groups, but will brutally and savagely murder outsider chimpanzees.

We're better than chimpanzees (or should be), but it is still natural to prioritize those who are yours. It's the same way that people are naturally more likely to help their peers than they are a perfect stranger. The propagation of the lie that "race" is a thing, when scientifically it is not, is another way of drawing lines in the sand between us and making us all more exclusive rather than inclusive.

So you're right. The only thing "race" actually is, is a sociological construct. A destructive and poisonous construct. It's as wicked and stupid as Nazism, though more subtle in its evils. It's something that provides no real benefit to humanity. It is a construct that pushes people away from one-another and makes them see people as "us" and "they" instead of "us" and "we". It forces people to judge by association unless you consciously dismiss such foolish notions through higher learning.

In a world where people have black hair, brown hair, blonde hair, and red hair, and have grouped themselves as such, you would get stupid things like this. "Man, that red-headed person cut in line and then held up the line paying in pennies," - "Yeah, red-heads are a~&$&%$s" (the moral of this story is the person is an a%%!#*!, their hair has nothing to do with it, but since the social construction groups people by their hair color, non-red heads who associate mostly with non-red heads see this and commit a common logical fallacy).

This is the destructive power of exclusion. Nobody wants or should be excluded.

More accurately, race isn't a lie. It's a sociological construct. But it's very real nonetheless. Maybe we'll get to the point where we can break it down and dispense with it someday, but it would be blindness to do so today.

No, it would be progress. The only way racism is going to die is if we let it die, or better yet - kill it faster. Our generation is one of the most open and inclusive generations ever, in a world where we have fewer barriers and borders between us, where we have biological facts that show us race is a lie, and a natural distaste for conformity that most of us can relate to someone being treated poorly because of something stupid.

I'm not sure where you live, Mr. Jeff, but here in North Carolina, we're much closer to inclusive than exclusive. Many of our youth are literally waiting for racism to die off, because it's viewed as the ignorant backwards thinking of old men (regardless of skin color), and are busy hanging out with their friends of different shapes, sizes, and features. The statement you made about disregarding race getting "black people" killed is something that seems entirely alien to me. Nobody is getting killed around here. What are we doing wrong that's preventing us from killing each other for not viewing each other as different?

I'm working a retail job right now. Why is it that it's unremarkable when two people with different skin colors come into the store and are obviously romantically involved? Why is it unremarkable when their kids share features with both of their parents? Why is it unremarkable when their kids ask for candy and their mom says "No we're going to eat at your grandma's house after we leave here"?

Because no one f*##ing cares.

And your argument leads very quickly from "Acknowledging race IS racism." to "Acknowledging racism IS racism." Which is one of the standard tactics of racists these days.

Maybe you could elaborate. From where I'm sitting, it looks like the Cat In The Hat has a better grasp on racism than you do.

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Scott Betts wrote:

I know a great number of men and women (probably the majority of those I know, in fact) who consider themselves feminists (in the equity-feminist sense, and possibly in the gender-feminist sense) but who are terrified of using the word feminist to describe themselves because of the tactics, goals, and beliefs held by the most vocal people who call themselves feminists. It seems, to me, to be very similar to how segments of Christianity have been drowned out by the extreme and the vocal, to the point where some Christians are reluctant to be vocal about their faith for fear of appearing to associate with the extremist fringe.

You don't consider this an identity issue, for feminists?

I cannot favorite your post enough. Most of my girl friends, even my sister would never want to be known as a feminist, because they think they're crazy and hateful. And why do they think that? It's not some unseen boogeyman or the conspiring of a grand-penis-waggling conspiracy. It's because that is how "feminism" has presented itself. It has repeatedly demanded the center stage and acted the fool.

Then we have people like Christina Summers who's not cracked and trying to promote some sort of biased agenda, but interested in actually fixing real problems where they are and also interested in not creating new problems to divide people and create unnecessary conflict. She's real, she's logical, and she's not interested in smoke and mirrors, and I cannot contain my overwhelming respect for her.

People like Anita Sarkeesian? If she were on fire...I would douse her and take her to a hospital to be treated for burns. I'd still think she was an idiot though.

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Pan wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Pan wrote:
So how does this sexism problem get fixed?
Well my parents taught me not to treat people differently. It seems to be working pretty well.
I agree with that but im not after how you personally don't contribute to sexism. I guess what I am after is what needs to be done so that videogames are not sexist.

Take responsibility. Spread truth through living it. Make reasoned arguments and provide real data. Don't demand others conform to your whims, go out and change the world. Vote to abolish all laws that distinguish between people based on race, sex, gender, appearance. Mock and scrutinize those who would draw lines in the sand between us, and ask -- no, DEMAND -- that people are accountable for themselves and their arguments. Cast away foolish shells of opinion, and don't use dirty tactics like trying to make monsters of others.

Inclusion, not exclusion. Take responsibility. Accept that him, her, we, all, are together. It begins and ends with you, and you, and you, and you. Jumping into someone's parade and telling them what bad people they are is unacceptable, no matter who you are or who they are.

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thejeff wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
thejeff wrote:
sexism and how it's not really bad, but modern feminists are.
Let's meet in the middle and agree both are.

But since modern feminists are bad for pointing out sexism, I don't think that works.

Bad for pointing out sexism? Oh no, never. Bad for using dishonesty, bigotry, and broken logic? Oh, very much so. Very, very much so.
Bad for pointing out sexism that isn't apparent to the person calling them bad.

Nope. As I said. For using dishonesty, bigotry, and broken logic. Bad for ignoring sexism, racism, bigotry, and other forms of discrimination when it is convenient and suits them. Bad for using sensationalism and stirring emotions for their own greed and self gain. Bad for pushing for double standards and for insisting that they are champions of unity and acceptance while pushing agenda-driven bigotry through the gate. Bad for exclusion rather than inclusion. Bad for branding everyone and everything that disagrees with them as the enemy of all rather than have real discussions.

Bad for pointing out injustice and prejudices? No. We would all be bad, from adult to child. Anyone who has ever been scorned, or looked down upon, or treated differently. The children who went uninvited to a birthday party or who couldn't participate in a sleepover because they were born a different gender. The man, woman, and everything in between who has been overlooked, over examined, forgotten, or remembered too frequently because of their features, their gender, their skin color, their spiritual beliefs, or their lack of spiritual beliefs. Any person who has been included or excluded from any activity because of arbitrary quotas, limitations, or exclusions, rather than effort, interests, and rights.

No, everyone, everywhere, would be bad if those were the reasons. But not everyone is dishonest, and not everyone wields bigotry and double standards as weapons. Not everyone excludes and makes an enemy out of those who are different. Some are inclusive, welcoming, and able to see that we are one and cast aside illusions through the use of logic, reason, and the willingness to be fair. And when they find a problem, they work on fixing it and being real.

I believe in the innate goodness of people though. I don't think that people are bad. I see people like Christina Summers and I am filled with hope that good things will come, because she is interested in working to fix problems and examine real facts and real data instead of sensationalism.

People like Anita Sarkeesian? Their data relies on you not applying it across the board. It's cherry picked, it's frequently wrong and misinformed, and it's biased and bigoted. There's not interest there in helping people be equal. There's lies caught on tape, and drama stirred to line pockets.

Changing the world starts with us, and we're responsible for being critical thinkers, because it is our responsibility.

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Pan wrote:
So how does this sexism problem get fixed?

Well my parents taught me not to treat people differently. It seems to be working pretty well.

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mechaPoet wrote:
I'm a guy

It bugs me that this even needs to be stated.

I would take playing a girl with a machine gun over playing a hyper-macho man 100% of the time

Me too.

I don't know who that scowling white guy on the cover of the Mass Effect games is

Wow, racist.

Why are there dudes who are hesitant to shoot at a well-armed female boss, but have no problem unloading on a male one?

Might have to do with society's history of protective privilages towards women. It's frequently considered dishonorable, immoral, and make you a failure as a man to strike a woman. Like how men are punished more fervently than women for the same crimes. It's pretty sexist, and people are taught that sexist protection of women is a good thing, and so when you are taught from an early age that it is wrong to hit women (often even in self defense) you might be subject to the brainwash.

Females have an assumption of innocence and purity along with the helplessness"?

It's a privilege that they get, yeah. The assumption that they are just more right, honorable, innocent, pure, and/or undeserving of scorn from the get-go. If they are presented as strong, then they are all of those things and that much greater for it, whereas if they are weak they are given an understanding pass. While males are treated as though they are expected to be strong, weakness is a discredit to their value, and they lack the association of positives such as innocence, purity, and often even honor.

It's kind of sad how biased it is in their favor, really. Fortunately, my mother taught me to believe in equality, and told me if another girl attacks me, fight right back. It has solved a number of problems in my life and shocked some of my boy friends. I have no problem kicking the snot out of Chun Li or Cammy while playing Ryu or Juri Han. Squeaky wheel gets the kick!

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TOZ wrote:
Well, this escalated quickly.

I apologize. I'm just sick and tired of this gross level of dishonesty rampant across...everything! I just got done making a post refuting the nonsense that Arthantos was saying about Fighters (all of which had nothing to do with actually being a Fighter), only to have DrDeth make a joke out of the effort and work put in by Aratrok by cherry picking and misrepresenting the data (as well as a basic understanding of how numbers work) and in an effort to discredit a member of the boards who is actually putting forth the legwork to make the rest of the community informed on a subject.

Aratrok didn't even present his evidence as empirical. He gave them the formulas that are used and invited them to run their own evaluations. Instead, we get dishonesty. Rubbish. Garbage spewed forth in a way that serves to ensure the continued ignorance of people who haven't seen or bothered to check the facts themselves like Aratrok did.

I'm just so sick of it.

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DrDeth wrote:
Aratrok wrote:

Aside, if you're using a one handed weapon power Attack gives you about the same benefit at 1st level that it does at 16th (a 15% increase to a 14.3% increase).

Atatrok, here are the numbers you posted for 12th level:

Longsword DPR: 51.71
Longsword DPR w/ Power Attack: 52.2

While I agree that 52.2 is higher than 51.71 it is not significantly higher, and in fact if you rounded both to the nearest whole number (since damage is only done in whole numbers) they are identical.

And of course, having PA means you dont have some other feat.

So, yes, for Twohanded tanks, it's definitely the best feat to take. For One handers, it's Ok,but hardly standard, and for two-weapon guys,there are likely better feats. True, those last are rather rare.

Um, Mr.Deth...

While I agree that 52.2 is higher than 51.71 it is not significantly higher, and in fact if you rounded both to the nearest whole number (since damage is only done in whole numbers) they are identical.

Do you not understand fractional math over a defined period? It's not the damage for an individual hit, it's damage per round of attacking. It means that in 10 rounds of attacking, one is going to do about 522 points of damage versus the 517.1.

And here you are cherry picking the location on the sliding scale of levels that the difference is the most diminished, and presenting that as if it were a standard.

I'm sick and tired of this sort of dishonesty.

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mechaPoet wrote:

Right, well, I can see this is going nowhere fast.

So, let's just go in a completely different direction that pertains to the topic at hand: instead of (or in addition to, whatever) watching Dr. Sommers' video about sexism in video games that doesn't really go into many specifics, why not watch Anita Sarkeesian's videos? They do a great job of pointing out and giving in-depth explanations of prevalent and pervasive sexism in video games.

Probably because a lot of people have aversion to pouring acid on their braincells.

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Artanthos wrote:

With 7 skill points/level on my fighter, and spellcraft as a class skill, finding the points is not hard. With a racial caster level, crafting magical items becomes simple. Fighters certainly have the feats to spare.

I'm not getting snarky, I just get very, very tired of people building DPR focused combat machines and then complaining fighters cannot do anything outside combat.

Certain races can do lots outside of combat by default. Fighters are handicapped at every step of the way by comparison to other classes. There is nothing in the Fighter class that lends itself to being a skillful class, nothing that helps it in creating magic items, and nothing that actually contributes to being able to pick up item creation feats.

But why is this?

1. Fighters do not get any particular synergy from a good Int (any more than a commoner would).
1. Spellcraft is not a class skill for fighters (putting them behind the curve).
2. Fighters will always have to increase the DC of items they make by at least +5 (making it harder).
3. Fighter bonus feats cannot be spent to pickup Item Creation feats, Skill Focus, any of the +2/+2 feats, or even Magical Artisan.
4. Fighter class levels do nothing to qualify you for item creation feats and Magical Artisan requires you to sacrifice 1 feat which does nothing for 2 full levels, and then gives you a grossly depreciated version of a single item creation feat.

It is incredibly dishonest to claim these things as features of the Fighter when everything about them actively discourages you from everything that you have described. Item creation was a feature of your race. You can't just be a fighter and have this be possible. It's no a matter of slight adjustments such as elf vs human vs dwarf in Hit Points, it's a binary and boolean of thing of "Yes or No". Fighter has no-influence over it.

I can take a commoner with a racial caster level (say gnome) and do everything that you have claimed as a thing Fighters do. But I could not, honestly, claim those as benefits of being a Commoner because they aren't. It's my knowing how to get exactly what I want out of the system and how to do something even though my class is actively working against me.

The claim that Fighters have so many sweet bonus feats still gets made to this day, and that somehow makes them better at item creation and such, or pretty much anything, but it's a lie at worst and dishonest at best. Fighters have fewer class features than other classes, and those bonus feats of theirs are there to try and make up for that (I'm not even going to bother going into detail as to why their non-bonus feat class features are pretty "meh" because it's been done so much before). Those bonus feats cannot be used to take non-combat feats.

Most fighter-enthusiasts insist that "fighters get so many bonus feats they can use their normal feats to make up the differences", but that has never been true. Fighters get 11 bonus feats over 20 levels. Those feats have the burden of giving the Fighter an edge in combat and comparing to the class features of other classes. Then, everyone gets 10 feats over the course of their careers that can be spent on anything that they qualify for. Fighters are frequently paying out their non-Fighter feats in huge amounts to play catch-up to other classes.

1. Rangers and Paladins qualify for major crafting feats naturally regardless of their race at 5th and 7th level. At the level that a Fighter would be able to have spent 2 of their 10 non-Fighter feats to get a dumbed-down version of a single item creation feat, the Ranger and Paladin have spent 2 of their feats to get 2 fully functional item creation feats, and they have Spellcraft as a class skill giving them a +3 advantage, equivalent to 6 more points of Intelligence, to their spellcraft skill.

2. Fighters are generally expected to invest their non-Fighter feats on things like Lightning Reflexes and Iron Will, consuming another 2/10 (so we're at 4/10) to pad their innate weaknesses. Meanwhile, Rangers and Paladins effectively get Lightning Reflexes or Iron Will 3 times for free. If they want to get better at skills that other classes are going to get a "free" +3 to the skill, they have to invest more non-bonus feats into things. Every extra feat that they have to expend on something other classes do not is a feat advantage that they have lost. And more often than not, that feat advantage isn't closing the gap but merely mitigating some of the proverbial damage.

3. Non-Fighter martials have virtual feats in the form of rage powers, paladin and/or ranger spells, and a variety of class features that are at least as good or better than most feats. Some of them so much better than feat alternatives that when given the option of trading feats for more of these class features it becomes a trading-up deal.

My personal thoughts on this is I find that sort of argument disappointing. I find it inherently dishonest. I feel it intentionally misinforms people. I feel that the argument relies on fundamentally flawed logic and assertion of opinion without proper evidence and/or smoke and mirrors.

When someone says something like:
"My fighter has 7 skill points / level.
My fighter has all these item creation feats.
My fighter has spellcraft as a class skill.
Fighters are great."

It is as dishonest and malicious as falsely presenting a biased spin on statistical analysis without actually looking at the cause/effect and/or information behind the data. When you actually look beneath the shiny hood, you find that this Fighter is using tons of custom and nonstandard parts and some are illegal in some states.

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Blazej wrote:
Except with that higher spell slot metamagics can be applied to the spell to augment it's power.

And you're still not able to convert that phenomenal cosmic power down. In a real mana system (ie - psionics) you can go longer by not casting as powerfully. Which means if you forgo throwing those hypothetical meteors then you can toss around way more of those hypothetical magic missiles.

For psionics one might wonder why it takes exactly as much from your mana-pool to create a ten dice ray of energy that hits one person as it would to create a 10 dice bolt that hits everything in a 120 foot line. One might expect that ray to either cost less or have more of an effect, but that isn't the case.

Probably because one is a more technical use versus a basic use. One has a minimum investiture to get it to work at all and requires a more refined technique, the other is performing a basic starting technique and trying really hard.

I'm not saying psionics innately fail at representing mana, but the difference between spontaneous spell slots and points for emulating it is a lot less than you are trying to make of it.

And I think that vancian casting is leaps and bounds away from any magic system that even remotely represents a mana-based casting paradigm. The only way you could get more divorced from the idea of a reserve would be to remove the reserve entirely and make magic infinite.

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Spell slots innately fail at representing mana. Why? Because after you've cast your magic missile spell X times and cannot cast it anymore, you can still throw lightning, summon angels, turn into a dinosaur, melt the world with fire, and raise an army of the dead, but you're out of magic missile bullets so them's the breaks.

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EpicFail wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:

Sadly, game developers have long since clarified that alignment descriptors do ultimately effect the caster's alignment.

That is too bad if that's the case. For example, our hero Pedantic the Paladin cries out to the Druid- "Stop! Don't summon a L.E. Mite to walk into the boiling tar trap. What are you thinking?? Summon a cute little doggie instead to set off that trap."

Fortunately the rules have not changed. I'd rather piss on this game than play in a game that you can buy your way into heaven by repeatedly casting protection from evil over and over again.

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Aratrok wrote:

It's not just tick a box. It's track up to 9 series of boxes, and knowing which of the spells you have are associated with each series, or if you're a prepared caster, which are associated with each individual box.

Basic arithmetic is not challenging nor is it time consuming. You can do any calculation that psionics will require you to do in a couple of seconds tops.

It's a nightmare. I've used character sheets like that and they only work for sorcerers and bards. The other 5 casting classes in the game (cleric, druid, paladin, ranger, and wizard) only make it convoluted and a pain in the ass.

You have to re-write all of your spells each day and set check boxes for each of them. Then each time you re-prepare spells, time to do it again. You either need to expend quite a bit of note-paper, or you have a character sheet that is 20 pages long. The more spell slots you have (from things like bonus spells, domains, school speccing, etc) the more bookkeeping it creates, and you have to write out each spell that you have prepared of each level in which slot on each day.

Even classes like the Vitalist and the old Erudite (which wasn't really a particularly problematic class if you weren't using an optional rule from the WotC web enhancements) that swap their powers around each day aren't much of a pain because at worst you write down which powers you have, not write which powers you have in which slot at what level with which metamagic feat, etc. It definitely works waaaaaaaay better on a traditional character sheet. >_>

Actually, I find the default character sheet rather irritating to me when playing prepared casters. I always end up creating a spreadsheet to track my spells / levels / special modifiers (like spell focus), and generally end up writing all my daily prepared spells on a separate piece of paper that gets changed around constantly.

Fortunately I actually kind of enjoy the micro-management, but trying to teach other people to do this has met with swingy degrees of success. >_>

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Darkholme wrote:

Wow. This discussion quickly went from:

"This optional rule results in broken/useless characters until it is no longer being applied, and that is BAD" vs "AND We're okay with that." to an unusual discussion about whether wanting/trying to play a child character has horrible connotations for who you are as a person.

Very weird.

As for Ashiel's point; I agree. Someone can be easily unusual without being dangerous or immoral - I've dated some women over the years who would definitely fall into that category.

My personal 2 coppers on the whole thing is that I don't generally want children in my games unless there is a legitimately good reason for it because it causes an immersion issue, and I feel like most people aren't really going to deal with the issues of actually being a child (as has been my experiences with the majority of child characters I've interacted with over the years, which has been more than I'd have expected).

The life of a D&D character tends to be one fraught with danger and peril. They face nightmarish horrors and come back for more. Many of them die, and some of them are unfortunate enough to live through some of the more chilling ordeals. Putting aside the fact that such things are a big deal in their own right, there's a different feel when a child is subject to the horrors of the D&D world. Or when a child is melted into a puddle of liquid by a dragon, or torn in half by a troll. Somehow to watch a youth, something that we seem to instinctively imagine as being brighter and more pure be snuffed makes it seem all the darker afterwords.

That said, in the right context, I can support it. My character Alina was in a game with a young (like 13-14ish) dhampir that was essentially caught up in adventure out of circumstance rather than choice (essentially she was wanted by some crazy cultists and was in protective custody of some paladins and clerics of Imoadae, and my PC ended up tagging along her own reasons), and I enjoyed that character. She had a legitimate reason for getting caught up with the rest of the PCs which made it more plausible.

I've also seen the opposite, with really annoying child characters who seemed to think that being a child meant that they should receive special social treatment while more or less being taken seriously when they wanted to be, often with the added bonus of being completely insane. Like throwing magic missiles at people as part of a tantrum and expecting people to just accept lethal-damage attacks that could kill a normal person as childish antics rather than an imbalanced child with the fantasy-equivalent of a gun.

Despite my reservations, I've been willing to work with players who are interested in including child PCs or NPCs (I encourage players to have characters with friends, families, and similar ties, which means things like younger siblings or even their own children could be a thing), including my friend who enjoys playing the lolis (whose current character in one of my campaigns is a demon born into a mortal body as part of an evil scheme, lost her memory in the process, lived life as a mortal and thus recoloring her experiences, and now is awakening to her past memories and rebelling against the master plan as it would bring ruin to the world that is now hers; and she didn't ask for this). I can also understand that part of being a child can mean lack of the skill and/or experience needed for adventuring, and you don't necessarily want to start them out on the same footing as regular PCs for immersive reasons.

Generally I'd work something out on a case-by-case basis with the person interested in playing a child. In general I'd be loath to start them off in different classes than they would eventually enter anyway since that comes with lots of weirdness (your adept "wizard" suddenly forgot how to cast spells in armor and use cure light wounds Mr. Potter), but if they were young enough I'd probably suggest a pseudo-negative level (a flat -1 age penalty to attacks, saves, ability checks, and skill checks, to represent their inexperience) for the first session or so and then have them remove it after they had experienced some big-boy/girl things, to represent their rising to the occasion.

If they were simply teenagers rather than actual children, I'd generally just hope that the player had a good reason for them to be fairly skilled and assume they had to "grow up fast" due to their ordeals. In the case of classes like sorcerers, psions, bards, and other classes that might spontaneously end up with magic powers, it's pretty easy to write it off as early bloomers or natural talent. In other cases, something like a young boy or girl who took up the sword to rescue their sibling / parent / loved one despite their apparent age or inexperience could be a thing as well (if they learned swordplay from someone in particular that would be a plus and would make for a nice mentor-contact to play with during downtime and such).

As a general rule, playing a child isn't going to make you stronger than if you weren't. No advanced templates, you get the same point buy as everyone else, I'd even be fairly slow to make you take on any sort of adjustments other than those that might come with dropping a size category if you're indeed that young (but again, the younger, the less inclined I'd be to accept the character without some thought put into it); so worrying about someone trying to squeeze extra points out of the age thing isn't a worry of mine.

I guess overall, this was a long winded post that could be summed up as "maybe", with most of it hinging on what the player was willing to invest into the game and how open they would be to us working together to achieve something that is immersive and rewarding. I'm generally willing to try to help with unusual character concepts if possible, and there are plenty of players I'd rather not play some more traditional roles either (everyone knows that one guy who seems to think that neutral is just a cover for sociopath or something), so just give me some reasons to believe that you can take the torch and run with it.


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Lemmy wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
*Stuff with spell tiers and DCs for casting spells*
Huh... This is... terrifyingly similar to a homebrew I'm making with a friend. Even the "concentration" DCs are the same. oO
*brofist* :3
Hah! Don't try to fool me with false brotherhood after you obviously stole my thoughts!

I really must be a wizard. I stole your thoughts over six years ago in the past! :D

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Indeed. There are worse fates than death. Liches know this all too well. Being unable to kill a lich generally results in the lich being locked in solitary confinement for undetermined amounts of time. How the lich reacts with freed probably varies widely from lich to lich, but it could run anywhere between unabashed thankfulness and a repenting of their misdeeds having been stuck in a time out to think about their lives for all this time, to world shattering anger combined with an unholy and unhealthy does of solitary-induced insanity.

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Fabius Maximus wrote:

I played a Lizardfolk ranger in an Eberron campaign (Q'barra). He didn't give a hoot about all those pesky humans trudging through "his" jungle, but hired himself out as a guide nonetheless. Even lizard people got to make a living.

After the party came across a threat that endangered the whole region, he helped them because his tribe was affected, too. Eating the hearts of particularly powerful enemies in front of the paladin and the treehugger elves didn't make him win popularity contests, though.

I've had at least one Paladin that would've asked if you brought enough for everyone.

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Herald wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Herald wrote:
Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
Kelsey Arwen MacAilbert wrote:
Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:

So we've went beyond calling players entitled brats to calling them sex-offenders... And for what?

It's not that wanting to be Harry Potter inherently makes you a pedophile. It doesn't. It's that some GMs, including myself, have had enough issues involving that side of the geek community, or other issues involving bad things and children, that an adult bringing a child PC to the table is very far outside our comfort zone.

I actually see this as a reason to allow child PCs.

They are either harmless, or let you know that you don't want to associate with that dude before he becomes such a good friend that you let him watch your kids.

Huh, wha????

You think that people should use their childcare as a bellwether as to decide if they can game with you????

I cannot more vociferously advocate against such a course of action. I however my have totally misunderstood you. Please feel free to corre3ct my misperception of what you were trying to say.

As I understood it, if you let them play child characters the creepiness will come out if it's there, and then you'll know.

Wouldn't that potentially lead to some false positives? I mean, the same logic applied without bias would indicate that we are all universally brigands because our imaginary characters kill people and take their loot.

There are plenty of people I have gamed with that aren't even likely to be SO's that I still would let watch my child. The idea that you can judge someone after a few or even many gaming sessions is not really sufficient grounds to make this type of choice. This is a consideration that has nothing to do with this topic and shouldn't have even been broached.....

Well I mean, I've always kind of thought it's a bit disingenuous to judge somebody based on their fantasies, because most people no matter how bizarre their fantasies aren't going to have a collapsed sense of reality. I mean, every person who plays a FPS game isn't a loose cannon ready to blow people's heads off, everyone who plays RPGs isn't ready to kill and loot people, and people with bizarre sex fantasies (one of the top-five most common sex fantasies for women includes...forced activities...they don't like the other word on these forums; but that doesn't mean that they want to be forced into doing something or want to force someone into doing something).

Then there's the fact that if they DO seem to have interest in something really odd, and it is somehow connected to reality, it might not be in the way that you think. As disturbing as it might be, a child that was involved in...things of that nature...who later grows up, might still be wrestling with the altered perception of childhood that they themselves experienced; and might be working it out in their own minds.

I generally think blanket judgments of people is a bad idea. :P

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Pluribus wrote:
TLDR: I'm curious what types of true neutrals are out there. Here's my character, I'd like to hear about yours.

I've had 3 true neutral characters in recent times. I pegged their alignments as true neutral because they're just normal people as far as their personalities go, but each is really different from one another. They aren't interested in the greater good, they aren't particularly cruel. Here's a bit about each.

1. Makrosa A.K.A. "Makky" (Tiefling Dual-Disciple Psion): Makrosa is a tiefling that lives along the junkyard outside of Sandpoint in a Rise of the Runelords game (that I hope continues in the future, but the GM is out of state in the army). Her best friend is a voodoo doll simply named Voodoo (she can hear him talk, nobody else can yet).

Makrosa is a socially awkward outcast from sandpoint and comes to the town from time to time trading junk that she's found and cleaned up, or for stuff she's traded with some of the more monstrous races in the area whom she's learned to speak with (including goblins, orcs, etc) who for various reasons weren't very apt to mess with her due to her demonic appearance (she's got horns, red skin, long obsidian-black hair, and a long slender tail).

She's pretty easy going and just takes life as it comes and would like to have some friends but has gotten used to being alone (except for Voodoo). She believes herself to be evil (because of what some of the people in Sandpoint said) and has accepted that she simply must be evil since she's a tiefling, but her concept of good and evil don't really match up with the truth of the matter (she had an aasimar friend who she believes is good and blessed, and she is evil and cursed, but doesn't know why everyone can't just get along). One of the other PCs took it upon himself to explain that she wasn't evil for being descended from demons and that was all bigoted rubbish and she shouldn't listen to it.

She doesn't generally go out of her way to actively do good but she's got a pretty clean conscience for the most part and intervenes in situations where she's feeling pretty altruistic. She can have a mean streak though when she gets made and taps into her demonic urges, which usually manifests itself in her nails growing into claws and her becoming more violent.

2. Agatha Aurora (Human Dual-Discipline Psion): Agatha was born in forest in Irrisen after her noble witch mother left Whitethrone and choose to live secluded from society due to her scandalous love affair with her Ulfen manservant. When some Ulfen insurgents killed her mother for being a jadwiga, her aunt Magthera raised her near the cottage where she was born in a small hovel very reminiscent of a hedge-witch or hag's house, and didn't reveal to her that the two were related until much later in her life. Up until then, she lied to Agatha and just said she was a child she snatched up one day to be her witch's apprentice, and being a grumpy and bitter woman (due to her anger with the entire situation leading up to her sister's death) Magthera was a pretty cruel guardian.

Agatha spent the majority of her life learning to be an extremely skilled witch, but wishing that she could interact with normal people. She was a talented shapeshifter and would occasionally spend time watching some of the local villages from the edges of the wilderness, rarely entering the villages unless sent with a disguise to find some nick-knack for some magical experiment or somesuch. She spent much of her time surviving in the wilderness, until her aunt became seriously ill, and opted to bind her soul to Agatha's in a ritual that resulted in Agatha eating her aunt and her aunt becoming her psicrystal (in this case a bone-fetish that looks like a polished eye-socket with an iridescent opal for an eye).

Agatha then, at her mentor's instruction decided to go on a journey out into the world to expand her horizons so to speak. During that journey she was witness to a kidnapping and robbery that left a lot of armed guards dead. Having watched the scene unfolding but being unable to rescue the woman herself, she opted to instead eat the dead bodies because she was hungry and was a giant centipede at the time. Later the party found her, confronted her, found that the giant centipede talked, ended up asking her to lead them to the kidnappers and the rest was history.

3. Alina Draclau (Vampire Vitalist): Alina is a young(ish) vampire that was "slain" during the crusades against Tar Baphon in Ustalav long ago. She was impaled on the pike of a soldier and left for dead (it's likely nobody realized she was a vampire at the time) in the interior of an old Ustalavic castle (or small outpost, or some other mostly stone-bricked structure forgotten about after the war). When the pike eventually wasted away to age (wood rotted and broke down, metal head rusted away, etc) she woke up to find herself in a more modern and very different world than she remembered.

To her surprise, she found a world where the general of the invading army was worshiped as a goddess, the great Tar Baphon had been sealed away, gods had died, Usatalav was a shadow of its former self, and she had no idea where her friends and family were or if they were even still alive anymore. So she set off to do a bit of exploring, where she met a party when they crossed paths at a town destroyed by...something.

A devout worshiper of Urgathoa, Alina enjoys the finer things in life. She's something of a hedonist who prefers to dwell on things that make her happy, feeding, and having sex (conveniently she's usually her happiest when feeding and having sex). She encourages other people to do what makes them happy as well and embrace and love themselves and each other for their gifts and values and doesn't really understand people who are prone to self-loathing, or those who abstain from things that make them happy. She has something of a classist complex when it comes to vampires vs non-vampires, seeing the living as something of a quaint peasantry whom she enjoys spending time with.

She honors the dead and celebrates events by organizing feats and festive events to honor the passing of the dead (where she frequently utters a prayer that Urgathoa guide the departed souls away from the boneyard and to the place that THEY wish to go, rather than their fates being decided by the fraudulent hypocritical-b#*~%-goddess) and hopes that they find happiness even more splendid in death than they did in life. Despite the fact she drinks blood, she's also enjoys cooking for others.

The party she crossed up with is escorting a young dhampir that's been the subject of a number of science experiment at a magician's academy where she was being poked and prodded in an attempt to understand how she as a living creature was capable of having an affinity for negative energy and aversion to positive energy. Unfortunately the dhampir's vocal cords were damaged from an event in her past and she mostly just wheezes when she's trying to speak. The party which consists of a group of Paladins trying to escort the young dhampir to a safe location (kind of a witness protection agency sort of thing given some other stuff that the dhampir was involved in pre-campaign start) who are can't understand the dhampir (to the dhampir's frustration) and encourage her to rise above her "curse".

However, Alina finds the whole thing rather silly and encourages the young dhampir to be proud of her noble heritage and sneaks her off into the night to teach her how to be a proper lady and embrace her vampiric heritage. Since the Paladins and Cleric (of Imoadae no less) haven't realized Alina is a vampire, they have no idea what's going on, though the middle-aged cleric seems to be suspicious of her. In any case, Alina has found herself rather amused by the young dhampir and intends to stalk her for a while and be her mentor.

During their travels she was "slain" again by an orc and buried. One of the Paladins left one of her earrings at the grave, and the young dhampir took her hat. When Alina woke back up underground, her initial thought was "Oh for ****'s sake, not again...", and then when she got up she tracked the dhampir and the Paladins down to a nearby village and decided to do a bit of relaxing while in town (she grabbed a taste of the dhampir earlier when nobody was looking so she could track her more easily). The dhampir is pretty sure her nighttime friend is still around since she left her hat on the dresser in the inn, and sometime later she returned to find the hat missing and the Paladin's earring in it's place...

Alina dresses in an old Ustalavic noble-style and wears a long wide-brimmed hat with a feather and an onyx stone set along the center, wears a long cloaked cape, and carries around coins minted in one of the fallen counties of Ustalav that no longer exists.

Bonus points to anyone who can identify where her surname came from. I'll give you a hint: It's not what you think it is, and her family crest is a Purple Cardinal. ;)

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One of the benefits of the d20 system is it's very modular. You can chop off large portions of it and duct-tape entirely new systems onto it fairly easily (though this will always change the way the game fundamentally plays unless the new system is designed to retain certain truths of the core).

I once wanted to run a game where spells were basically raw magic being shaped from the infinite energies of the planes, where magic was essentially infinite, but powerful magic incredibly difficult to control because of the amount of energy you had to channel, contain, and sculpt.

As a result, that campaign used a system where a d20 roll was used to determine if you could cast a spell. The check was basically a Concentration check against a DC. You could cast spells at-will, you just had to A) have the ability to cast a high level spell (based on your class), and B) succeed at casting it.

The thing was, the DCs were set at something like X + Spell Level * 2, where X was the base DC of the tier (10, 15, or 20, etc), so the DC breakdown looked something like this:

Tier I
0 = DC 10
1st = DC 12
2nd = DC 14
3rd = DC 16

Tier II
4th = DC 23
5th = DC 25
6th = DC 27

Tier III
7th = DC 34
8th = DC 36
9th = DC 38

Failure to hit the DC resulted in losing control over the magical energies and frying yourself, so you would take damage based on the level of the spell if you whiffed it (IIRC, I think it was like Xd6 where X was the level of the spell, or it might have increased a bit with each tier, I forget). Generally speaking, whiffing was something you didn't want to do.

You could take 10 when you weren't being threatened. When threatened you had to roll your check (in addition to trying to avoid any AoOs and such), which meant that you risked losing control of your spell in the turmoil. You could also take 20 when casting but doing so required you to increase the casting time of the spell to x20 its usual casting time (so 1 standard action = 20 rounds of casting) which provoked and was subject to getting interrupted as normal for casting spells (you did not do this in combat). You could also aid another on the check if you had additional magicians helping you shape the spell (each was required to ready an action to help you upon casting it, and each additional magician added a +2 to your check).

The direct result of this was that casters tended to stick with 0-3rd level spells, especially in combat, which were much easier to control and cast defensively, but they could cast these spells pretty much as often as they wanted. This achieved the goal I was going for in the campaign, and even at high levels (the campaign had to go on hiatus around 14th level or so) the party's staple tactics and spells revolved around 1st-3rd level spells and some 2nd tier spells with a bit of caution.

You could cast any spell that you had prepared/known. In general, high level slots were often invested into a larger variety of low-level spells. Sorcerers basically didn't exist (there was little point for them to as everything was spontaneous now). Metamagic did what you would expect and increased the effective level of the spell and thus the DC to cast it.

It was a very fun campaign. It also helped that I just strait up limited sources that could be used to improve your casting checks, but an alternative method would also be to tweak the dial of the base DCs until you're happy with whatever modifiers you expect your group to get access to over the course of the game.

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