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False Equivalencies in the Edition Wars

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Puggins

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EDIT- this was probably too emotional on my part. Mods, please remove this thread.
 
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Why would you expect the level of anger to be the same?

The 4E fans haven't had their system disappear from store shelves.
They haven't had their organized play events end.
No one has tried to terminate other company's rights to support their system with poison pill legal contracts.

You should only expect discourse on a given subject to be balanced if the underlying reality is balanced. Sometimes, one side has less to be angry about.
 
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Puggins

Explorer
Supporter
An excellent point, Halfrung- maybe I should've explained the title a bit more.

I see many posts decrying the hate on the WotC boards- how they viciously attack you or the systems you personally enjoy. I personally don't see this, but I understand that if you're a pathfinder subscriber, you'll find the WotC boards somewhat unfriendly compared to the Paizo boards.

On the other a lot of other posters who make a show of standing above it all, blasting both sides for their religious fervor or their bile-inducing rants. This I simply do not see with one notable exception on the WotC boards. I'm tired of these equivalencies. I see piles of hate being spewed from one direction, and a far less amount from the other.

I also have to note that their are plenty of people who prefer 3.5e- the majority of those people in fact- that state their opinions in a calm, respectful manner. Jeff Wilder on this board for example (just plucked that name off the top of my head- there are plenty of others. The whole Maxminis board- small as it has gotten- is decidedly anti-4e in slant, but I never once have I seen them start spouting vitriol or portraying 4e as some seven-headed beast out of revelation.
 



Jeff Wilder

First Post
Personally, I see more aggression from anti-4E people, but more passive aggression from the pro-4E people. I prefer to see aggression, myself, both because I prefer confrontation to festering, and because aggression is easier for the average person to recognize and ignore.

(In my experience, people that retaliate against aggression -- sometimes me, though I'm sure many readers will find it surprising, given my sainthood -- will also usually retaliate against passive aggression. On the other hand, sometimes people who would normally stay away from aggression will get sucked in by passive aggression.)

Anyway, IBTL, as they say. (Passive aggressively, ironically enough.)
 

Jeff Wilder

First Post
I also have to note that their are plenty of people who prefer 3.5e- the majority of those people in fact- that state their opinions in a calm, respectful manner. Jeff Wilder on this board for example
You're fairly new to these parts, so I'm going to forgive you this calumny.

Just. This. Once.

The truth is, I actually love a good flamewar, and I'm a pretty nasty sumbitch in one. However, EN World mods gave me a week vacation a while back, so I have learned to resist the smell of blood. Sometimes my pupils still constrict, my blood pressure spikes, and I start sprouting hair in all the wrong places, but since I've learned that the moderation here prefers passive aggression to aggression, and generally tags the retaliation rather than the cross-check, when I start to wolf out I ignore the thread for a while.

Anyway, all this is just by way of explanation, so that when you hear guffaws prompted by your chosen example, you'll know why.
 

Archon of Light

First Post
So here's my question- am I wrong? Is this near-religious fervor present on both sides? I really don't think so, but hey- give me a counter-argument.

Let's see if we can't put everything into perspective here....

People who take the time to post continuously on message boards are, obviously, very passionate about their games. I often wonder when they ever find time away from the forums to actually play the games that they sometimes defend so vehemently. But I also count myself among the passionate enthusiasts, though I tend to pick my moments when I do emerge to speak out. This is such a moment.

Since 4th Edition was announced, we, as a community, have been forced (not asked) to make a choice when we were more accustomed to having options. It was no longer a matter of which campaign world you played or what splat books you allowed at your table. Everyone was still playing the same game, even though some were still enjoying the previous editions, which were out of print.

Wizards had thrust a new edition prematurely in an effort to bring back much of the profits that were being gained on their brand name by other companies. But because of the OGL, the previous edition can never truly be denied as long as there is a strong and continued interest in the product, and there are companies willing to produce good products to support it. And suddenly, there are two current brands of D&D competing with each other, and not by the same company.

The strain is settling heavily on the shoulders of the gaming community. Those who favor one edition over another are fearful that there can only be one inevitable outcome in all of this: there can be only one edition. Thus, to champion the survival of their preferred game, they must also champion the company that will continue to produce it. Their loyalty to the edition transfers directly to the company that produces it, which borders on nearly blind devotion in order to support their own personal cause. It just so happens that the most fervent of these individuals spend a great deal of time making post after post after post... you know, this is where they live. It's what they live for. You just have to accept that.

As for myself, I've learned to split my loyalties between game and company. I like the 4th edition rules, but I really dislike the business model and practices that Wizards has been demonstrating these last few years. On the other hand, I am very impressed with the attitude and professionalism that Paizo displays on a daily basis, but I'm already over 3.5 edition rules. I'm still waiting to see the new Pathfinder ruleset to see if they can rekindle the old flame, in which case I may take a closer look at their Pathfinder line and setting. I still think there's a happy medium somewhere between the two, and if PRPG doesn't get there, then I might either have to wait until 5th Edition or come up with something on my own. The future seems uncertain these days. Guess we can only wait and see.

What I can say for certain is that I am genuinely sick and tired of a handful of people trying to tell everyone else how to feel when one company does something that affects the entire gaming community, as well as the gaming industry. And I don't mean to get one-sided now, but I am also sick of having one company making our decisions for us, or limiting them in order to steer us towards doing what they want us to do. At what point do we get to make a decision for ourselves without some inconsiderate company and their internet-minions attacking us for it? It's enough to make me want to disconnect my router.

Ok, I guess you can count me among the emotional ones. Just some things can raise my hackles. This week certainly did.
 

I also have to note that their are plenty of people who prefer 3.5e- the majority of those people in fact- that state their opinions in a calm, respectful manner. Jeff Wilder on this board for example (just plucked that name off the top of my head- there are plenty of others. The whole Maxminis board- small as it has gotten- is decidedly anti-4e in slant, but I never once have I seen them start spouting vitriol or portraying 4e as some seven-headed beast out of revelation.

I'm a pretty virulent supporter of classic D&D (OD&D thru 3rd Edition). I found 4th Edition's core design ethos to be radically different from what I want out of a roleplaying game and I'm also very disappointed that the D&D trademark has been applied to a game that lacks the core gameplay of D&D.

But, with that being said, I have to disagree with you: I have seen rational critiques on 4th Edition and I have seen rabid vitriol aimed at 4th Edition. I have also seen rational critiques on 3rd Edition and I have seen rabid vitriol aimed at 3rd Edition.

I think we're all better off if we all choose to reject the vitriol without assuming that everyone who dislikes one edition and likes another is equivalent to those spouting the vitriol.

The 4E fans haven't had their system disappear from store shelves.
They haven't had their organized play events end.
No one has tried to terminate other company's rights to support their system with poison pill legal contracts.

You should only expect discourse on a given subject to be balanced if the underlying reality is balanced. Sometimes, one side has less to be angry about.

OTOH, I also agree with this.
 

kitsune9

First Post
I never jumped on the edition war bandwagon, though I read them a lot. I personally don't have a problem with gamers playing other editions than the one I play. I play Pathfinder, someone plays OSRIC, someone plays OD&D, someone plays 1e, 2e, 3.x, and 4e. I hope everyone has a good time and has friends to play with. I have no criticisms of the different editions. If Pathfinder closes and goes away, I'll play something else, but I have no gripes against other edition players, designers, or WotC.
 

Let's see if we can't put everything into perspective here....snip

Very well stated. There is also the fact that this whole fiasco has more than two sides. For some of us 4E or Pathfinder isn't the system we would like to see supported. I am ever so thankful for the OGL, the retro-clone movement, and the people that took the effort to keep old school gaming materials alive and in circulation. The majority of the bile from a lot of fans of the old school comes not from hating a new rules system as much as it does from the company producing those rules for its efforts to try and erase other systems (especially ones that they own:rant:)

How much hate would there be if you could walk into a game store, see a shelf full of D&D goodness consisting of 4E, 3E, 2E, 1E, Basic & OD&D sets and shiny new supplements for it all:angel: Its a dream of a gamers heaven and if any company were to do that then I can't imagine the amount of goodwill they would enjoy.
 

thedungeondelver

Adventurer

I think the real issue with any edition war is that value judgments are made about the people based on what given flavor of DUNGEONS & DRAGONS they play.

I - speaking for myself, just me, all alone, not painting with a broad brush* - saw that leveled at people who stuck with 2nd and 1st edition AD&D by a lot of early 3e adapters, mostly on Usenet.


...

*- your mileage may vary, you may have seen it coming from the other direction, etc ad nauseam.
 

Storm Raven

First Post
How much hate would there be if you could walk into a game store, see a shelf full of D&D goodness consisting of 4E, 3E, 2E, 1E, Basic & OD&D sets and shiny new supplements for it all:angel: Its a dream of a gamers heaven and if any company were to do that then I can't imagine the amount of goodwill they would enjoy.

You probably also can't imagine the rapidity with which such a company would go out of business.
 


Puggins

Explorer
Supporter
You're fairly new to these parts, so I'm going to forgive you this calumny.

...

Anyway, all this is just by way of explanation, so that when you hear guffaws prompted by your chosen example, you'll know why.

Well, call me a guy with a rather loose definition of "civil". I've been reading these boards since a good two years before my join date. I simply don't post all too often.

My statement stands. You participate in the edition wars, so by definition a certain degree of emotion is going to exist. You don't descend into religious zealotry. Most of the time the only thing I agree with in your posts is your post count, but that's irrelevant to the matter at hand.
 

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