“El Fuego” Does It Again

Hello, all, 🙂

Since about a few months back, I began noticing a disturbing trend: more and more people were listening to my experiences, then turning to me non-challantly and saying, “meh, that’s not role-playing”. Invariably, they then proceed to “explain” to me what role-playing is, and how it needs this and that and those other things like, say, a Game Master, and conversation generally degenerates pretty quickly from there on.

In a very real sense, I’ve never felt that I had the tools to explain to these people that we were really talking past each other. There are people out and about whom I have estranged beyond all hope, through a process of, step one, feeling irredeemably insulted but their claims that I “wasn’t role-playing”, and step two, irredeemably insulting them by calling them imbecilic, narrow-sighted or both.

Alas, I still feel that way. If Yet Another Person (YAP) comes up to me and tells me that Capes or Primetime Adventures or, worse yet, The Shadow of Yesterday isn’t role-playing, I simply won’t know what to tell them. But then again, that’s only because, to those people, I don’t have enough authority to say “go read this thread” and have them do it, because they will assume, and rightly so, that it’ll just be another thread about “things that aren’t role-playing”.

So, my hope is that some of you may know this YAP, and maybe you have that authority, and you can tell them to “go read this thread”. Specifically, you can tell them to go read this post by Joshua “El Fuego” BishopRoby.

If enough YAPs read this, maybe when they come up to me and tell me that what I do isn’t for them, they’ll still have the sense to know we’re still talking about the same hobby.



4 Responses to ““El Fuego” Does It Again”

  1. Yeah, I had the same experience with my old group of roleplaying friends. Especially one guy would comment on MLwM and Capes and say they weren’t roleplaying games, then after some discussion back down to say that at least they weren’t real roleplaying games. I don’t remember what Forge game it was when, after playing he said that it was fun, but once again it wasn’t a real roleplaying game. I was annoyed, but he ensured me that it wasn’t a value judgment, just a general observation. Then again, why would I be interested in if a game holds up to someone else’s limited view on roleplaying or not?

  2. joao-mendes says:

    Ahey, 🙂

    he said that it was fun, but once again it wasn’t a real roleplaying game. […] he ensured me that it wasn’t a value judgment

    This one I particularly revile. Of course it is a value judgement, and in my mind, it happens to be a particularly insidious one.

    why would I be interested in if a game holds up to someone else’s limited view on roleplaying or not?

    This, on the other hand, is ultimately the right response, although there are some limitations attached. Namely, it gets hard to have real conversations about role-playing with these people, because you just can’t get through the unbased assumptions. As for conversations about game design, that’s just outright impossible.

    Which is an interesting connundrum when you have these conversations in the bosom of, say, a monthly role-players meetup, wherein virtually all conversation is about gaming, in one form or another.

    For instance:

    Gamer 1: I like the way Game X does this or that;
    Gamer 2: Yeah, I like Game Y’s approach, blah blah;
    Me: Or, Game Z does this and that;
    Gamers 1 & 2: <blank stare> wait, that makes no sense, what about the GM?
    Me: Oh, Game Z is GMless;
    Gamers 1 & 2: <blank stare again> that’s not a role-playing game;
    Me: <my turn to do the blank stare> …



  3. Rui Anselmo says:

    So I take it you’re not getting as much from the monthly rpg meetings, eh? 😉

    Anyways, I’ve given up.

    I enjoy most games I play, GM or GM’less, and I don’t go about pointing fingers; it’s the same as I used to say, not too long ago, that D&D was not “real rpg”, because it tended heavily on the “game” side; of course it’s a rpg, it’s as much rpg as MLwM or Exalted, only it’s played differently from others. No biggie.

  4. joao-mendes says:

    Hey, Rui, 🙂

    Well, yes and no. I get the most out of those meetups when new people show up, and unfortunately, lately, there just hasn’t been much of that, but I can write that off as being Summer and all.

    Never give up. Never say die! 🙂

    But yeah, I know what you mean, no biggie…