Geeky Topics Round Table Ep 1

5 geeks, one round(ish) table. Listen in as we discuss everything from Lovecraft, Penny Arcade, race and gender in games, the relationship between player and character, and everything else that crosses our mind.

Some of the items mentioned:

Patton Oswalt wired magazine article
D20 Burlesque
Go make me a Sandwich
Boobs don’t work that way
Women in reasonable armor


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13 comments on “Geeky Topics Round Table Ep 1

  1. 1c33m4k3r says:

    I absolutely loved this episode. Very intelligent discussion all around. Except for the Disney Land porn… Anyways, a few of my personal reactions:

    I agree with Billy- I cannot portray real-world racism in any of my games. The elf-dwarf paradigm and even the “purge all xenos” aspect of Warhammer 40,000 is fine for me, as they are rooted in fantasy. There may be some real-world issues at play in the games (especially 40k – there’s a great deal of social commentary present in that universe, I feel), but it’s not targeted at real-world groups, people that actually have and do exist in our present time. It just does not feel right to evoke real-world race-based discrimination and hostility in a role-playing game. I suppose it’s just my sociological education. Like Billy, I am also white.

    Look up the Stanford Prison Experiment for what happens when people are pushed way beyond their role-playing limits. They weren’t playing a role-playing GAME, per say, but it is frightening to see people actually assume (and internalize) the roles of prison guard or prisoner with little briefing given by the experiment’s administrator. Basically, it’s why I am seriously reluctant to participate in a LARP.

    Angela’s Space Marine is a really interesting issue. On one hand, I love the Warhammer 40k universe and want to remain true to it. The whole Space Marine mythos is absolutely fantastic, the almost biblical allegories and legends created about the Emperor and the Space Marines. But I also love equality and believe that women are capable of doing anything that a man can. I think your solution was the best, Jesus: it gave Angela the opportunity to play a Space Marine, while still reinforcing that the Imperium is a sexist institution, that The First was an “aberration” in “sacred procedure”.

  2. 1c33m4k3r says:

    Oh, and I forgot to mention that I loved Billy’s hand-holding anecdote. Amazing how all you had to do was grasp another man’s hand and walk around to attract hatred and disgust. You didn’t even need to hug him or anything – the barest hint of PDA outside the socially acceptable heterosexual “exchange” was enough to send those people into the deepest throes of rage.

    And thanks for referencing those blogs, Angela. Particularly, “Go Make Me A Sandwich”. I’ve spent the past day reading every article from that blog and others that it references. Fascinating stuff; really encouraged me to analyze my own thoughts and actions. Especially how seemingly innocuous thoughts or statements can contribute to sexism and alienation.

  3. Fabian says:

    About those Daemonettes, the “lust” demons, as it were. In the tabletop game of Warhammer 40K, they used to have pewter miniatures of the Daemonettes which had them all going topless as they charged into battle, and apparently this was a hit with certain individuals because there’s a lot of dirty Daemonette art around the internet. But me, I think that, what with these things being an aspect of pure evil, that they should skew more towards being horrifying rather than sexy.

    I think that’s what they did when they made another version of the Daemonettes in plastic, but this time their hair was floating up unnaturally, their faces are hideous, and as for being topless, well, their “female” half is covered up but the male half isn’t. It’s a confusing and revolting image, which I think better reflects the warped mindset of Slaanesh. Yes, there’s something sex-related about it all, but it’s… “wrong.”

    What’s my point of my rambling? Well, with the old minis someone would just look at them and go, “LOL, boobz” but now we’re forced to confront them as what they should be. They’re supposed to be sadomasochistic monsters, not strippers. So, some of the neckbeards might not like the change, but I think it’s appropriate.

  4. ComputerKing says:

    Great Geek Talk, Even the Goofy-deflowering. Hilarious at points, Thought-provoking, and fun. Maybe next time you can talk in funny voices, too! And as a black guy myself, I would love to see the Racist T-shirts you make, and laugh at them. (I like the idea of a T-shirt that says, “Racist T-Shirt” on the front.)

  5. Ian says:

    I loved the podcast and it was interesting. However the reaction most people have to homosexual males is that most men refuse the concept of letting another man fornicate with them via anal. There is a differance between brotherhood and input over output of an oriface made to expell waste.

    Angela, you need a firearm and some close combat training,
    might makes right i.e I kill everyone that disagrees with me ergo I am right.Highly applaud your dedication to equal footing, but if you get up in a guys face for him catcalling,you have to be able to back it up. As long as you lack force then prepare to roll over.

  6. Ian says:

    NC-17 is a movie rating and it is federal, the ESRB is a private enterprise and it is far more detailed on descriptors for ratings. The requirement to keep it private is that the ESRB must make a system that pleases thousands of individual stores and distributors so the niche for Adult is much smaller than Mature. Halo is a M game, and an ID card is required per federal law.

    It comes down to common sense on the part of stores, parents, and kids. Hmm, shoot a foe in the head and the body falls and then pans away and pans back and the body is gone ergo for violance it is Mature, headshot a foe than skull rape is an A rated game.

  7. Ian says:

    P.S
    Ergo mom should not buy that game, and check the frigging box if the kid grabs a game! there are parental controls on computers and xboxs.

  8. Barsher Da Barsher says:

    /Quote However the reaction most people have to homosexual males is that most men refuse the concept of letting another man fornicate with them via anal. There is a differance between brotherhood and input over output of an oriface made to expell waste. /end quote

    This statement never made much sense to me. First of all, men on men aren’t the only people to enjoy anal sex. While not my cup o’tea, many straight couples practice this… uh.. practice. Secondly, I would have to say… doesn’t a vagina expell waste? Every month or so? Periods. Thus, it’s an ‘output’ sometimes, as well.

    Even if the people who say that won’t take that information as correct, I guess at the end of the day, I don’t care what people do for their sexual practice. Just as long as they both (Or all four, eight, twelve) of them agree to it. Just because a guy like having sex with a woman dressed as a sheep doesn’t mean it’s ruining my life. I might not want front row seats, sure, but if they both are happy, then rock on.

  9. Ian says:

    My comment did not make much sense, fair point. What people do on their own time is their business, however… anal is just known to be unclean. The brotherhood referance is for fictional characters like Enkidu and Gilgamesh, but in a modern setting those two guys holding hands would be considered homosexual hand contact in much of the States is considered to be intimate(gay means to be happy).

    A womans period is her biological ‘clock’ reset function for the possiblity of child creation, not solid waste disposal.

    Change topic:

  10. Syren says:

    Though I know the long and short of homosexuality wasn’t a major topic in the actual discussion, reading Ian’s two bits was disheartening. Other than the long tirade I could get on how anal isn’t the most preferred method of gay fornication, it just seemed offputting. The team itself showed themselves more than mature enough to handle the idea of homosexuality though in Monster Hearts, and for a guy like me it was both an interesting and surprising addition. Keep solid guys.

  11. Barsher Da Barsher says:

    Monster Hearts was interesting. When we first were being told about it, I thought every character was going to end up trying to do their ‘Sex Move’ on Angela’s character because she was the only woman at a table full of guys. However, I was pleasantly surprised.

    I think at some point in our roleplaying lives, each of the fandible crew has played someone of a different sexual orientation. I’ll be the first to admit that when I first played a gay character, it was a little off putting… until I realized that it didn’t change the character that much. I was still an adventurer. I still slayed monsters. I still was a hero… the only difference was I was attracted to a different sex than what I was used too being.

    We’ve also changed sex and race around, as well. Why? Well, why not. I’m never going to be a strong African American female but it’s nice to try to see the world through that different lens — even if Fandible does try to keep some of the negative aspects out of that lens when we RP.

  12. Katheb says:

    As a Muslim, the way you played your character was not offensive, but it did show that some of your knowledge about Mulsims is still a bit skewed by the stereotypes. However I could clearly see that you did not do it to be racist or offensive.

    Generally speaking, I won’t RP anything dark as I personally would be uncomfortable with it.

  13. William Coffing says:

    WOW!

    This is an old episode but I am so glad to hear people are still listening to it. I’m glad I wasn’t offensive, but I too would agree that I leaned HEAVILY on the stereotypical aspects of a Muslim character. I hope that I now could do a better job at representation .

    Thanks for commenting, Katheb.

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