Friday, July 26, 2013
Title and first line are a combination of quotes personally pointed toward me over the past 5 days. I love the internet, I really do. I also love debates and discussions and opposing opinions. I'm even big enough (pun intended) to admit that I regularly consider myself in the right, who really pushes forward doing things they think are in the wrong? I find it absolutely intriguing when I express opinions and comment which start up a virtual fire storm of controversy on various places on the internet. On some level it makes me wonder if this is how things worked in the ancient Roman or Greek governments.
Some have posed the question "How did we get here?", which I think is a great question. I wish I had a great answer to that, but all I can do is make a guess and reference my personal outlook. I am passionate in regards to my opinions and my entertainment. A large part of my personal entertainment is tied to games that I play and the hobby that surrounds those games. To be fair, some people have fishing, some people have exercise, I have games. Going back a fair long time (easily 20+ years at this point) I have been a gamer in a particularly social portion of the gaming community. Despite enjoying the occasional board game or video game, my true love has been roleplaying games and miniature wargames. I did not start with miniature wargames, I started as a pretty hard core Roleplaying fan, playing a series of games including D&D, Champions, Marvel Superheros, GURPS, Shadowrun, Star Wars, Top Secret, and Call of Cthulhu. At some point along my own gaming arc I was introduced to mini-wargaming and did not like it. At that time I jumped into Magic the Gathering instead and really enjoyed a short but fruitful engagement with that game. Later on, after diving back into the RPG pool, I was reintroduced to mini-wargaming and this time it grabbed on and stuck. As life forced my RPG group to ramp down and disband I began to get my gaming fill from playing wargames.
So what???" Thats what your thinking right now, correct? Your trying to figure out where the strife and drama that has filled the previous months of Wyrd Miniatures vs. Bill Anderson exists in this article. I mean you only really came here for more drama, right?
Sorry, this is unlikely to head in that direction, but let me see if I can help you out. Significant portions of my energy spent time developing the stories that played out in the variety of RP games I was involved in. It was not long at all before I was firmly moved into the "DM/GM/Storyteller" role for those games. This role further developed and built a strong following with contributing to wider world building and home-brew games built off the mechanics provided by the games I was playing. This was even better with the internet, as I started up "Towers MUD" and was able to build up an online game world (all text based mind you) and was able to experience a global community enjoying an effort I led. Over time these types of creative outlets waxed and waned and then dropped off significantly when I got involved in GW games. It's heresy to change GW games, everyone knows that.
Along comes Malifaux and the game itself hits on nearly every level for enjoying entertainment for me. To add to this I became a henchman and started to develop collateral that could be used by other henchmen. Namely I was able to find an outlet through pulling together, organizing, documenting, and creating dozens of different formats for tournaments, leagues, campaigns, and other types of games. Then I got pulled into play testing and was able to help the game grow and contribute opinions that resulted in the expansion of the game universe along with balance within the game. That was fantastic and became a really exciting outlet for that creativity that used to be applied to my RP games. In addition, this had the same impact of watching those efforts become well received by another global community.
Ahh, that's the problem, he is an entitled snit who feels Wyrd owes him something." Some of you are thinking this right now. Others are not but some of you are feeling awfully vindicated and proud of yourselves at this point. I have to wonder, will you keep reading if I warn you you will likely end this article disappointed? Those of you who feel this quote triggering your emotional satisfaction response should probably stop here and feel good about yourselves.
Bear with me while I switch up one more time. I mentioned above that I love discussions and debates and especially that I love the internet. I am very secure in my personal opinions and "view of the world according to Bill". I spend a lot of time reading, researching, and contemplating a wide variety of thoughts and opinions. I use all of this information in one way or another to form my own views and opinions on how things are. I am very passionate about my opinions, and feel that I am often or always right in what I think. I feel this way because when I am unsure on the soundness of one of my opinions, conjectures, hypothesis, or facts I continue to research and question until I become more sure. I go to great lengths to understand where that personal line is between what I "feel", what I "know", and what is a provable "fact". Often this is perceived by others as "Being closed minded and always thinking your (I'm) right". I guess this perception is more a one of "unassailable rightness" rather than "I think I am correct but if you can help me understand how I am not I will adjust until I am correct" Two different views on the world I suspect.
I love debates and discussions because they provide a variety of other views held by equally (and sometimes far more) passionate people. There are numerous opinions presented in heated debates and discussions that I disagree with, can disprove as non-factual, or are simply arguments to be loud. There are points and opinions presented in those same discussion and debates that illuminate an area I had not understood, not realized, or simply not considered. These types of discussion are really great for an opinionated person for two reasons. On the one hand I gain new facts and perspectives to further refine an opinion. On the other hand I gain more opinions that demonstrate how solid my original perspective already is.
Wait, your saying that your passionate about your hobbies, opinionated, interested in opposing views, and other people infer their own bias on your views?" I realize there is unlikely to be many people still reading who actually had this thought. This one is mine, take it as you will.
To make a final comment in this rambling and leave the whole post not really wrapped up, let me say this. I seem to have a lot of time lately because I am not a fan of Malifaux v2. I am wanting to play Malifaux (RealFaux, ClassicFaux, Malifaux Classic, V1.5, etc) but there are only a handful of my previous play group who are willing to even consider this. The rest of the group is becoming fairly militant about only playing V2. Then again, maybe its me being militant that I do not like portions of the new update. Either way there are two camps being equally stubborn and not enjoying playing in the other camp. As I am in the minority, I suffer the curse of free time.
What I do with that free time is really my choice. I am enjoying lending brain energy to really picking apart and analyzing my own view and preference in relation to Malifaux V2. All that time energy I used to spend contributing to the Malifaux gaming community, playing the game, and tied up with some connection to the game is going to go somewhere. I find it's still rewarding to do some writing and lend that energy and those efforts to the Malifaux I enjoy (and by proxy really picking apart the Malifaux I do not enjoy). I also know for a fact that there is a wide community who is in love with those opinions and public ramblings. If the reaction from the wider community is any indication, there are as many who love it because it allows their "inner crusader" to emerge as there are who love it because they feel vindicated. My opinion is that this vindication comes in two flavors, those who recognize some issues and feel comforted they are being publicly highlighted and those who feel vindicated because they need something to point their personal distaste and ire at. I have certainly pointed my personal ire at several targets through my life, especially when I feel its warranted.
Dear Reader who made it this far, I want to ask these simple questions. If your so offended by my opinions, why are you still reading? How do my opinions impact or attack your own enjoyment of your hobby?