You’d think, having read many, er, any of my previous posts, that I wouldn’t have to say this. But from surfing forums and reading replies to this column and in others, it’s pretty obvious that, yes, I do: Life is too short to game with Assholes.
I’m serious. There are so many venues for gaming apart from face to face with the kind of dickheads who will make you play a sexually available slave girl or who seem to think that your sole reason for being there is to provide snacks. I’d offer an example of a guy being victimized by a predominantly female gaming group, but the only one I can think of was us making Brad dress in drag to play with the Girl Game, and he really didn’t seem to mind. Also, it wasn’t like we were holding his ability to game hostage to our demands, he actively sought us out as a choice among many gaming options. The fact is with forum gaming, skype, play by email, rpg comms on sites like Livejournal and other places, not to mention MMORPGs, you don’t have to eat a shit sandwich every time you come to the gaming table.
And it is perfectly reasonable to break up with your gaming group if it isn’t meeting your needs, if your styles of play aren’t meshing, and yes, if anyone involved, including the GM, is an asshole. If you think that the tribe of losers who only want you around so they can ogle your boobies and try to dominate your character into kinky sex is your only option, you just aren’t paying attention.
Now, if you’re on the interwebz, which if you’re reading this column you obviously are, create yourself an account on a networking site like Facebook or Livejournal, or even MySpace, and post that you’re looking for other people to game with. That’s what I did to form the Girl Game. I posted in my Livejournal that I wanted to run a game for a bunch of girls, preferably girls who had always wanted to game but hadn’t been allowed to by the male gamers they knew, or who were intimidated by guys, or who just wanted to see what gaming was like with other women. I immediately got twice as many responses as I thought I could comfortably handle, and then the weeding out began. And honestly, scheduling and location did most of the weeding for me. At the time I started this I was still bartending Saturdays and working a 40 hour a week dayjob, and had three other gaming groups going on Sunday afternoons, Saturday afternoons and Wednesday evenings. One Friday a month didn’t seem unreasonable, nor did asking people to drive out to BFE where I live, since we were playing GURPS and trying to lug around all the books I would need on the bus would have made me slip a disk or something.
Seriously, it’s that simple. And if you don’t live somewhere blessed with an over abundance of geeks, then hop on one or more of those same sites and see if you can set something up through email, skype, a comm rpg, or even mail. I played an awesome play-by-mail game, for about three weeks until everyone else weenied out. Losers. But the little of it we did get through, was freaking awesome. Particularly if you’re a stationery freak like me. Oooo, the searching for the perfect stationery to fit my persona…
Anyway, I digress, there are tons of options for gaming apart from finding the only four people in your podunk little town and putting up with bad behavior, misogyny and stupid shit. Seriously. And if you live in a larger city, you have NO excuse. Put up a flyer at your local gamestore, post online, call your friends who may not BE gaming now, but maybe they’re curious.
Life is too short to game with assholes.