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Abigail Hanley
682 followers -
It is not important whether I succeed or fail; only that I live beautifully.
It is not important whether I succeed or fail; only that I live beautifully.

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And on the topic of inclusion in gaming:

Whenever I think about this one, I come back to the idea of a fun tax.

I honestly don't care that a historically or genre accurate setting would marginalize everybody except cis, straight, white guys (usually rich ones). Those descriptors don't cover all the gamers setting at my table.

So why should queer gamers, female gamers, minority gamers, trans gamers, etc. have to put up with either playing a cis-het white dude to avoid 'realistic' prejudice or put up with their character being harassed?

In essence, this adds an extra burden those gamers must bear to enjoy the game. It's a levy on fun that is only leveled on people who are not the 'typical' gamer. And that's not fair, to me.

So I tend to make settings (and this is why I use my own settings, 99% of the time) where those problems are either non-existent or the people who have them are considered strange and distasteful, rarely heard from and always assumed to be wrong. Even in my historic settings.

Because sexism, racism and homophobia aren't required to enjoy steampunk or ancient Rome or high fantasy. We're just conditioned by the media from which those settings spring and game designers' own assumptions to accept that.

Let's not.

We're gamers. We accept FTL, strong AI, magic, vampires, dragons and superpowers as part and parcel of the gaming experience. As givens, even in 'historic' games, a lot of time. If we can accept those, we can damned well accept that prejudices can be overcome. Even erased.

At the end of the day, I game with my friends. And I am not going to add to my friend's social burdens by not allowing them to forget, for a minute, that the real world has those problems.

If they want to assume that burden, as a group, we'll talk about it. (Though as a queer gamer myself, I usually only want those elements in my game if they are doing something, not just there because they are there.)

But for me it always comes back to that concept: the fun tax. Should there be a extra burden for gamers like us? And at my table, the default answer to that is no.

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From a bi woman to all of my LGBTQQAIP+ family, the ones I know, the ones I barely know, the ones I'll never meet, the club kids and the bar hoppers, the artists and the dreamers, the executives and the muscleheads. To the powerful, vulnerable, brilliant black women and the beautiful, kind, talented black men, and the trans men and women of all colors, and to the gorgeously individual genderfluid folks who are brave as all hell for just being there. To my Latinx brothers and sisters and others who lost so much this week. To the kinky and the vanilla, the warm poly families and the asexual folks just trying to be seen, the beautiful fat girls and hot fat men fighting for space, to all of you, and all of us: I'm here, and I'm with you. I'm grieving just like you're grieving because that's what you do when someone chops a hole in your family. I love you, all of you, and I will fight, and we will fight, because love doesn't die, but people do, and only action, not thoughts, not prayers, not good intentions, only action will end that.

+Asher Taylor+Asher Taylor

FREE HORSES!!!! 52 thoroughbred horses need homes. Will go to Sugarcreek this Sat. for slaughter. Gentleman died and his son wants nothing to do with them. Most broodmares are broke and some are in foal weanling, yearlings, 2 yrs. and 3 yrs. old most are gelded. FREE and papered. Friend of the deceased is trying to find homes. 440-463-4288 Barnesville, OH.
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I would hate to see all these house put down. PLEASE someone help they are FREE and papered!!!!!!!!

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This is an awesome LARP, written by the talented +Secretly Mike Young​​​. I playtested one of the scenarios, and even though we all died horribly, it was incredibly fun. :-)
Additionally, three of the five stretch goal authors are women, making it an unusually inclusive property. One of them is +Carol Johnson​, who has done work for Night's Black Agents among others. Another stretch goal author is my partner +Kirt Dankmyer​​​, a published science fiction author who's been writing games since the nineties. While he's not a woman, I've read his scenario, and it is nonetheless fabulous. 

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You should only bother with this post if you're very liberal-leaning and interested in MMOs. ;)

Warning: Long post.

My wife, +Abigail Hanley, loves MMOs, and I enjoy playing them with her. Right now we're playing Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. We're in a guild there (aka a "free company" in FF14 parlance), and through an odd series of events, ended up inheriting it, and the guild housing attached to it; we renamed it Kittenforce (because kitties). For the reference of those who play the game, it's a level 8 Free Company with 2 actions a day, 3 pages of bank space, customizable gear and a company crest. We're on the Coeurl server on the Aether data center.

For those who don't play the game, it does have a monthly fee. There's a slightly cheaper monthly rate where you're only allowed one character, which is actually fine because the interesting "job" system the game has allows the same character to play all the classes in time, and switch between them.

As someone who is not as big a fan of MMOs as my wife, the job system, plus the humor and general newbie-friendliness of the game, has made it worth the monthly charge IMHO. Oh, and crafting kinda works like combat, so it's not as boring as it is in a lot of MMOs! Again, we're on the Coeurl server on the Aether data center.

In any case, we feel like the guild space is kind of wasted on just the three of us currently left in the inherited guild (me, my wife, and our roommate), and so we thought we'd open it up to other progressive folks. There would be rules against racism, sexism, trans-antagonism, fat-antagonism, ablism and homophobia in guild spaces. Anyone who's involved would be welcome to help develop the specifics of it. We'd really like it to be a safe space where people who like gaming but are also liberal/progressive can come and play and not risk being constantly triggered or having to choose between having friends and arguing for their own humanity and that of people they care about. If that doesn't sound cool to you, I still love you and encourage you to try the game, but please avoid our guild. :)

On a more practical/gamery note, we have a high level weaver/botanist in the company and mid levels of the other crafting and gathering classes, mostly covered by my wife, though I have a few gathering and crafting characters as well. Thanks to these, we are happy to help with gearing folks up, especially low level characters. We also have a mid level tank/healer pair (40ish level) and would be willing to help people get through the lower level content (particularly dungeons). The "leveling down" system in FF14 is excellent, so it's very easy for high level characters to give low-level characters a hand.

We'd love to have a place to hang out, play our favorite MMO, and run stuff with cool people who share the value of human dignity and respect that make progressive spaces awesome. I hope some of you would like that, too! ^_^
 
If you're interested, feel free to poke me here or at my email (xiombarg@gmail.com), or poke my wife,  +Abigail Hanley 

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This is my reality, and part of why I won't have fat shamers in my life. 

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This.  It makes it difficult for me to trust people, because a whole lot of people consider fat people less valid and human than thin people, and consider people who are very fat - as I am - actively inhuman and the legitimate butts of any kind of cruel humor or overt disgust.  I've removed people from my life because of this. 

I find it particularly frustrating when members of other oppressed groups do this crap.  I mean, really?  So you get treated badly for your differences and can see that it's wrong, but you think treating me like crap for mine is just fine?  Great, thank you, you are now officially the problem, and also not someone I want in my life.  
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Possibly relevant to +Lex D 's interests.
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