Saturday, June 13, 2009

Attack of the War Gamers

"Yes the game is DARK, BUT...."

"Yes the game is VIOLENT, BUT..."

"Yes the game depicts a HORRIBLE HELLISH FUTURE, BUT..."

But what? All you guys want to "debate" me. About what? To try to convince me that violence and killing incorporated into entertainment is innocent and harmless? Well I don't think it is.

Isn't this just the gamers version of "It's not wrong when the president does it"? Killing is not wrong when gamers do it. What else is not wrong when you all do it?

How about computerized rape? Would that be okay too? It's not real rape, it's just fantasy rape. Would that be just a game that has no affect on society or people's heads and value systems and I'd be stupid for saying it did?

The idea of entire formalized game scenarios around rape, gang rape, raping the enemy, that doesn't go down so well does it? I wonder why. No I don't actually, I know why. It is because you have not yet been desensitized to the idea of rape so that it doesn't bother you or shock you. You still see something sick and wrong with rape. You don't think of rape as legitimate. But strangely you see killing as perfectly fine and even entertaining. Well who does that serve I wonder? It certainly wasn't something you were born with. Where did it come from then? Go ahead and tell me you haven't been skillfully indoctrinated all of your life to accept war and most of this society's standardized forms of "legitimized" violence, killing and death. Or are you just natural born fantasy killers? I doubt it.

Luckily for the women of the world, rape isn't quite so easily and handily paired with some noble idea to make it seem acceptable. Unfortunately for the whole world, mass killing has. We have entire, complex games built around killing. Nothing else, just killing. Because that's good wholesome fun. According to you.

Is killing glamorous? Is killing good? Is killing fun? Why do you find it fun when you play your games of death and war?

How do you suppose your subconscious mind parses that out, or do you actually think it can? I say it can't. It's not possible. Because in order for you to play your killing games, at some level, somewhere, you've decided that killing is okay. Under SOME set of circumstances, your particular set by coincidence, the idea of killing and fighting and shooting and making war is perfectly lovely.

Well, I'm sorry, but I can't come along with you on that.

You see, my basic position is that killing is wrong. Killing doesn't fix anything. Killing isn't justice. Killing doesn't even take any brains, any thug with a big club can kill.

Killing and war have been glamorized, justified and legitimized by connecting them to patriotism and 'we're number one' , to self defense and the nobility and bravery of the individuals who go off to war. But those things are not war. War uses those things to get its credibility and its legitimacy because the truth is that war has no credibility or legitimacy of its own.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm no shrinking violet. When it comes to defending myself I'll use a gun in a heart beat. But I won't find it amusing. I won't do it without feeling it hard afterwards. I will defend myself, but so much of the violence we see and engage in this society has nothing to do with self defense. Have you not seen the police beating and shooting people who are no threat to them? The police are 100% legitimized and so by default anything they do is automatically legitimized, even when it's not at all legitimate. Even when it's senseless and punitive and unjustifiable. But try getting around that inculcated, naive belief that police can never be criminals or act inappropriately or be rapists or serial killers. They can be and some of them are. Cops are just people like everyone else, and there are cops that are real thugs. That's on the record. Some cops commit crimes. Every day in fact. Some soldiers commit crimes. All presidents commit crimes. Regardless of any title, badge, uniform or high office, these are all just people, ordinary people, and not all of them are nice. They are able to hide under the freely given blanket of legitimacy from this unthinking society and they are able to get away with murder because of that. That's a fact, check it yourself.

Where I guess all this violent gaming loses me is pretty much right from the beginning. You see, I don't consider any form of violence to be entertaining. I don't get why millions upon millions of people in this country ENJOY a "good" rape and murder movie. In my mind, that's cracked. There's something wrong with that. There's nothing at all fun or amusing or entertaining about brutality and killing. Violence, brutality, murder, killing, shooting are serious business, there's nothing fun about them. I know, I've seen it and been in it and there's nothing fun or romantic or swell about it. It's the worst thing in the world. That's my opinion for which I'm sure somebody somewhere would be willing to snap my neck. They would feel entitled to snap my neck because they strongly stand behind their own conception of what kind of violence is good, even noble, or at least excusable, acceptable, all the way to "harmless" fun. But how did it ever come to be that any kind of brutality slid over into the category of "fun" at all? Something is out of whack there. That doesn't make any sense.

Some people who love playing these violent games got very angry with me because I pointed out the violence in them. I'm not putting the violence in them, the violence is already in them. This is like it's not wrong for the violence to be there it's only wrong of me to say so out loud. Well I'm sorry, the violence is in there and I'm saying so out loud.

I didn't pick Warhammer for any particular reason. This isn't about Warhammer. I don't care in the least about Warhammer. I don't care about the characters or the story. They are not at all what I am addressing. There are dozens of incredibly violent and dark "games" out there, I picked Warhammer by chance, so I'll say it again, this is not about Warhammer. There are millions and millions of men playing Warhammer along with dozens of even more violent, more disturbing games. That's a whole lot of fantasy killing.

Why do they like their killing games so much? Why do they spend so many hours and so many years playing their killing games? What are they feeding? Are games without killing incapable of fulfilling the entertainment urge for some reason? Do war gamers ever ask themselves these questions? Is there really nothing better they could do with their time than have war fantasies? There probably is but games are easier and the pleasure hit comes fast and large and is guaranteed. You all are addicted, you just don't want to see it that way. After listening to the hostile bombardment in defense of a silly game it tells me that this is far more serious than you're even willing to face. Why should it matter to you at all what I think? Am I a threat to you lot?

The fact is that I've felt this way all my life. It hasn't affected a single one of you in the slightest. It made no difference at all in any of your lives. It didn't make a difference until you found out about it and then all of a sudden it was like the end of the world for you. It's what you are telling yourselves that is upsetting you. My thoughts and feelings have always been here in the same earth plane with you. It is not my thoughts or feelings that are causing you any grief whatsoever. It is your thoughts and your feelings. My thoughts and feelings have no affect or presence in any of your lives. I cannot affect you in any way. So why, suddenly, are you all up in arms over my beliefs and opinions? Why are you all rushing in to insult me and accuse me of being everything from stupid to a liar to someone who just doesn't get it? Why are so many of you needing to explain every detail of the game to me? You are seeking justification for why YOUR preferred killing game is a good and okay killing game. Apparently it is not enough that you think so. You require me to think so or you feel threatened. I see that as an abject failure to even try to be objective or serious about the whole of the violent gaming phenomenon.

Killing is not fun. Death is not fun. You're the ones who are saying it is fun, but I'm the one under unending attack from you all. Doesn't that strike you as at all backwards? I'm not attacking anyone, I never have. I am pointing at things I see because they are there. I am connecting dots that you refuse to consider connecting. Your refusal doesn't mean the dots aren't there to connect, they are there. That's why you're so pissed off with me. Because I am challenging you not to defend your silly games, but to defend your own private lust for violence and killing, and you can't do it.

Where is the fine line that you prefer to think of as a mile wide that separates thinking and fantasizing about killing from being willing to do it? Oh, only under the "right" circumstances to be sure, but what makes the circumstances right? A good and noble cause? Whose cause? Yours? Theirs? Mine?

Don't you get that killing is always deemed justified by who ever is doing the killing? Serial killers feel justified, are they? Cops feel justified, are they? The military feels justified, are they? Does anyone bother to think about it anymore? It takes two sides to have a battle, and obviously both sides feel justified in their killing. Well if only one of those sides is in the right, then one must be in the wrong, but which is which? In the heat of the battle nobody seems to care too much who is actually right or who is actually the "bad" guy. Both sides consider the other to be the "bad" guy, for their own reasons. So how do we ultimately decide who is really the bad or good guy, objectively?

When you really start digging down into the nitty gritty about who is justified and who is not, it's quite surprising to find that so very often whoever is doing the aggressing is in fact not a very nice guy. Often the side that is being howled about and called the worst of the worst people in the world are in fact the real victims. It seems more to depend on who can scream the loudest and kill the most. Whoever is left standing is the victor. But does that make the victor the good guy? Should it? I don't know you tell me.

See, I ask these questions. And I am willing to admit that it really depends a whole heck of a lot what side you're on in any battle. Both of the sides see themselves as in the right. But if both sides are in the right then you shouldn't need war to reach a mutually beneficial solution. War is an option that should rarely need to happen, but in this country it happens all the time. There's something very wrong with the whole damned thing, and even more wrong is how few Americans seem to give a shit at all who all or how many are getting killed somewhere else. Killing others has become the means to feel safe. Is that twisted enough for you? It sure is for me.

What makes it truly miserable is when good men are called to battle and they can't afford the luxury of doing too much thinking about who is shooting who and why. All they know is the reality that someone over there is pointing a rifle at them in the here and now, and they either have to shoot first, and accurately, or die. All of the critical thinking, all of the critically important questions, all of the issues of who is right and wrong evaporate in the harsh cold reality of survival. It truly becomes mindless killing in the literal sense. It can be very gripping. Intoxicating. You can totally lose your mind and your soul, if only for an hour, or a day, or a week or a year.

And this feeling, this exhilaration, the winning, the danger, the glamor of it, if you can call it that, this is the same high, the self same buzz that you gamers get high on. Only you do it all safe and snug in your bedrooms and offices at a computer terminal. But you still celebrate your kills, you even keep track of them. You count your trophies. And all the while you tell yourselves that it's just a game. And you damn well insist that I have to see it that way too, as if it's your right to tell me anything. It isn't your right. Even though it shouldn't matter in the least to you what I think, it seems to be of critical importance to you. Why should it be, if you truly believe there is nothing wrong with playing killing games?

Couldn't it be that even pretend killing, "fun" killing, is still thinking the thoughts and feeling the feelings of winning by the use of deadly violence? Oh yes, you love chalking it up to skill and strategy, but what's all that skill and strategy for? It's for killing. What else? It's not for setting a nice luncheon table. It's for killing. Admit it.

So please, spare me the "let's debate the game" nonsense. I know the game. This is not about your particular game, it's about you. It's your taking extreme pleasure, addictive pleasure from your war games. And it's you telling me, demanding of me, insisting to me that there's no harm in it whatsoever, that it does not and cannot affect greater society in any way shape or form; and for me to suggest that it gets inside our heads at the deepest level and serves to inculcate people into the acceptance of violence as legitimate, as long as there is a sufficiently evil bad guy in the picture, our violence and our killing is automatically 100% justified. It's warranted. It's necessary. It's even good. And dang it, who can help it if it's fun too? It's just a game after all.

I'd better take a minute to clue in my regular readers as to what this is all about. Let's see, how shall I put this? Let's just say I've had a busy couple of days.

Two years ago I started looking around at all of the online gaming going on in this country and I'll tell you the truth, I was really blown away by how violent, dark, depressing, depraved and grotesque a lot of it is. There are all kinds of games of course, ranging from cute little games with goofy little characters to amazing, impressive 3D productions in Flash with lifelike characters and lots of women with immense breasts running around half nude with humungous swords. As if. I don't know a single woman who'd be the least bit interested in being around sharp instruments in her underwear but this is "just fantasy". No worries about men getting themselves all wound up on bullshit that makes it impossible for them to have real relationships with boring old normal, clad, unarmed females. I say that with some sarcasm obviously.

Anyway, I'd decided to do a web page on my site about this violence. Not to attack the people who are into it, but to bring to the fore, to conscious awareness, particularly for parents, what it means to think of violence in terms of it being "fun" or "harmless". Because the human mind doesn't work like we love to believe it does. It doesn't separate out what our eyes see into fantasy and reality.

Our brains take it all in as real, as you may have experienced if you've ever been to a horror film or a really scary movie. Your heart is beating a mile a minute, or maybe you suddenly cry out from the tension and a good scare on the screen; but why would you? You intellectually know that it's only a movie and that the guy with the chainsaw or the ax or whatever, is just an actor and so are all the other people in the film. They're not even really there, it's just a recording. But tell your rapidly beating heart that. It doesn't care what's in your head intellectually. It is responding to the danger it perceives from a whole different part of your brain that is authorized to over ride your conscious intellect at will. You can actually think one thing and feel something in direct opposition to your brilliant conscious mind thinking its grown up, rational thoughts, at the same time.

You may think it silly to have a physical fear response to a recorded scripted story, but the fact is your body is reacting to it as though it was real. That's the main reason people go to scary movies in the first place. If they didn't feel real fear it wouldn't be much of a thrill. This isn't fantasy, it's fact. The whole of your brain is not just the conscious awareness part. In fact George Lakoff came out with the results of research last year where he stated that most of what we think of as thinking, over 90% of it, is done unconsciously. In fact the number is even higher than that. According to Lakoff, we do practically no conscious thinking. So the fear you experience at the movies is quite real, and it is not the result of your conscious thoughts but thoughts you don't even know you're having. The most you can do is keep that fear response under control with your intellect and will, and a feeling of assurance that you are indeed safe. But I guarantee you, if the scary guy playing the insane killer in that movie suddenly came walking down your aisle, you'd piss yourself.

Does that relate to violence in other entertainment? It does relate, and in the same way, and then some. My concern in writing the web page was to flag parents, and people in general who have never once thought about their beliefs about war and violence. As I mentioned above, we automatically assign justification to some of the most heinous acts of violence in our country, just as long as the violence is done by people we think of as authorized to do it. It's a bit weird when you really stop and think about it because there is no such thing as automatic justification. No one deserves to be given free reign to kill or shoot or imprison at will, period, no human being is so perfect as to be qualified for blanket authorization to kill or do violence at will, no questions asked. But we in this country have been so propagandized through television shows that always portray law enforcement and government and lawyers and investigators and intelligence operatives as these sparkling great people that are good hearted and always in the right, so that is our perception in real life.

We have no direct personal experience to explain our automatic trusting belief in authority, so where does it come from? Well that's obvious. It comes from the only experience we do have on the subject, and that experience isn't even direct. It's not even an experience of reality. It's an experience of watching fiction, 100% made up, no real cops or presidents or intelligence operatives anywhere in sight, ever. It's not even live, it's recorded. It is actors saying lines from scripts, and characters we come to "know" and actually grow fond of. None of it is real, but people none the less come away from it fully indoctrinated in their staunch belief that all authority is benign and beneficent and can be trusted at all times, so there is little in the way of questioning anything authority does, even when it's grotesquely and blatantly wrong. We'll even make excuses to cover for them, such is our deep self-indoctrination based on sheer fantasy. It feels real to us though, and we'll be damned if we let any facts set us straight. Hell no. We won't stand for it.

I am saying that the same kind of indoctrination occurs through all forms of major entertainment, and in the case of the web page I did two years ago, in computerized games of violence, war, killing and death too. Why would this one thing be exempt from affecting the mind?

It can't be exempt, everything affects our minds. There is nothing that does not affect our minds. It will affect different people in different ways, but I am only asking people to be conscious of what their children are being inculcated into without anyone realizing it or paying attention to it; because we have a serious problem with violence in this country. Where is all of this violence coming from? The major share of influence comes out of the whole of what we think of as ordinary entertainment. And this country is the most violent of westernized nations in the whole world.

Something somewhere is behind this astonishing level of American violence. Shouldn't we be willing to consider ALL forms of standardized violence that children are exposed to? Should we ignore out of hand anything that we personally happen to be behind and like? Is that fair? Is it honest? No, it's not fair or honest. If children were not inundated with death images and death messages from the first day they turn their TV sets on, if they were instead never even introduced to the idea that killing is okay, wouldn't they have a much harder time doing things like joining the army to go off and fight without even knowing why? To them killing would seem as senseless as it actually is, and they would need a reason before being willing to risk everything for what boils down to nothing at all. Am I horrible for asking people to think about that? I do not know why that would be anyone's valid opinion.

One of the arguments I keep hearing over and over is that it is only a game, as if that's supposed to be proof enough, absolute evidence that there's nothing harmful about it. It's a game. It's fun. But what I know, is that because it is so seemingly harmless, because it is fun, it is supremely able to enter the brain without encountering any defenses, no screening, no critical thought whatsoever, in fact it is welcomed. It is welcomed on the grounds that it is entertaining. It is fun. Sure it is killing, but it is only a game. The two things really have no business connecting because they exist at the opposite ends of a long and far away spectrum. And it scares me and it bothers me very much that somehow the two have met in the middle, and all of the negativity and horror of violence and war is washed away under the halo of wholesome enjoyment for one and all.

It began on Thursday morning. Someone, somewhere, an avid player of the game I happened to use for the example on my web page, ran across that web page and had an extremely, I'll repeat that, extremely negative reaction to what he read there. He immediately went into battle mode in his own mind, and I became his hated enemy. How dare I have a problem with anything about his death game? How dare I ask questions about serious things like killing and war when this was only a game? Was I so stupid that I couldn't see that it's only a game? It's not real. I am too dumb for words according to this guy. The email he actually sent would not be reprintable here, it is too offensive and vulgar. I don't have tender ears or anything, but when somebody's really hammering me with profanity and insults, it's not pleasant. That's where it began. This one unhappy camper was so extremely offended by my rather fairly presented criticism, so outraged that I had anything resembling a problem with Warhammer 40,000 and the Space Marines and the Angels of Death, that he meant to teach me a lesson I'd never forget.

He posted my web page and my email address on a gaming site that I'm told has something like three MILLION members. In the first 24 hours I was besieged with hate mail telling me where to go and to go there now. They wanted to rip my head from my body and shove it down the neck hole. Really a rather bizarre reaction in my opinion. I didn't attack gamers. I didn't attack anyone in fact. I pointed out what I could see with my own two eyeballs and asked questions about legitimacy. And a whole lot of gamers could see no legitimacy in my doing that. And they came in droves to tell me so.

In the last 24 hours that little web page has gotten over 11,000 hits. And whatever that unhappy camper originally posted on his gaming site went viral. I mean to tell you, it spread like wild fire to almost every large and small gamers web community on the internet. It even went on Twitter. You wouldn't even believe all the places that picked this up. Some horrible, outrageous, despicable woman is saying disrespectful, downright wrong, utterly stupid things about the killing game Warhammer 40,000. I am the most hated person in the whole of the global gaming community today. At least it sure feels that way. My inbox is smoking. I cannot keep up. And I have honestly tried. I really have.

I could have gotten myself all in a wad over the truly bad behavior of some very selfish, unkind people who simply cannot grasp the concept that I can have an opinion and it's no skin off their nose in any way. But I decided that since something I said caused such an uproar that I needed to step up to it and see if I could bring at least some of these people around to mid ground and at least show them that I'm not a drooling down the shirt nazi fundamentalist screeching about things I know nothing about. And I've had a 99.9% success rate with every exchange where I put forth the effort to find common ground. Because I know for sure we have common ground, I just needed them to know it so they wouldn't have to be so upset with me over something that in fact, was never said. It was not an attack. But this game has a following, and a very devoted one for that matter. I can't begin to tell you how many emails I've gotten from guys who explained the intricate details of the characters and the story line and all of the details of the game in the attempt to prove to me what a great game it really is so that I'll admit how wrong I was for not giving it, and them by default, the respect they both so richly deserve. Only a true idiot would fail to respect the game or its honorable, noble, intelligent, sophisticated players.

But I just don't see it that way. In fact as I see it, most of these guys are incapable of pulling out of where they are, just for long enough to try to be objective. They are not objective to put it mildly. I find it truly amazing that I can write about and criticize religion and have never gotten such scathing, abusive responses from staunch religionists. These guys blow Christian fundamentalists out of the water. The intensity of their defense of their clearly, immensely beloved killing game exceeds everything I've ever seen. The only close comparison I can make is the standard reaction to criticizing Israel. These seem to be in the same ball park.

So what's this all about, really? I thought it was just a game. They don't act like it's just a game. In fact, they act like it is the most serious thing in the world. They believe in this with all of their hearts and souls. Is that really rational? Should grown men feel this intensely devoted to a mere game? To the point they are willing to send vicious hate emails to someone who has done nothing to them whatsoever, and to threaten her, and call her every insulting name in the book? Is that the behavior of a reasonable adult mind? Is it really the end of the world when someone has a different opinion than you do? Is that grounds to despise someone and dismiss them entirely as a human being? Over a game?

As this process has unfolded, in just a short two days, I am watching as all these angry men, men of all ages, prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that all of my concerns are legitimate. That the acceptance of violence and hatred and killing and making someone an enemy for the slightest cause in a "game" or non-serious format does indeed saturate the mind down deep, not at a conscious level but even more scary, at the same level where the heart beats rapidly at a horror movie. They feel they have permission to hate, to be hostile, to dismiss someone different from themselves. It plays right into the hands of the social engineers who seek to guarantee that there will always be a steady supply of warriors for their armies. These guys feel rage, and the rage is real. Reason is not a part of this. They approach me with demands to bow down to their will, to see it as they see it, or die, in a way. If I fail to comply I am literally loathed, with full body loathing, despised and reviled. I become the most heinous person they know. Over a game. Over an opinion which is in fact, justified.

How can they defend that? How is their game, which has not been touched, or threatened, or in anyway taken from them, nor is there the slightest risk that it could ever be taken from them, how is it of such immense importance what I think? Why is it so unacceptable to them that I fail to give them the justification for enjoying killing games that they have given themselves? Why am I automatically evil and they automatically righteous? What compels them to feel it is legitimate at all to behave so badly with anyone for any reason, much less over a difference of opinion over a game they like to play.

I don't know, but it makes me feel very sad..

But cheer up, as I write these words it is only Friday night. I can hardly wait to see what will happen when the weekend comes and all of the gamers and all of the players come home from their offices and places of employment, and belly up to the computer to play their favorite games and read their favorite posts on their favorite gamers web sites. And when they find the word, the message, the fact that some vile stupid person criticized a killing game, how many more dozens and dozens of furious, obscenity laden emails will I be getting? It kind of tuckers me out just thinking about it.

But there is an upside to this believe it or not, and it tickles me a good bit. Because all of these gamers, at least the ones who first go to the website to see it for themselves, are being brought directly to my movie site, which is packed to the gills with hundreds of the kinds of movies they don't show us on television. And I am loving that. And according to the numbers, some of them are actually coming back, again and again.

As I see it, that is a grand victory wrapped in a prickly coat. I'll take it. Because honestly, I think I win this time, and in more than one way.


If you want to see what caused all the hoo-ha, here is the link to that page at my website.

As of today 6/22/09 I am no longer accepting comments or emails from gamers about this. I can not do it. I do not have the time. I can't spend all day, every day, for weeks and weeks on end, doing nothing but responding to people who run across this one post or that one web page and want to get their digs in. I know you think I owe you that, but I don't. It's not reasonable for you to demand that I have to do that. It's not possible for me to do that. I've heard every one of your positions over and again. I HAVE TO move on to other things. I'm sorry if you feel that's not fair, but that's how it goes. I've asked you to stop the emails and rage filled tirades. You're not respecting me at all. So I have to shut this down. The subject is closed, you missed the window, it's over. Whatever your opinion is, you are entitled to it, and I am entitled to mine. I am now officially closing the door on this. I won't post your comments, answer your comments, or read your comments. I won't read or answer any more of your emails. I can't. Sorry.


  1. I guess you must have touched a raw nerve there. Well done!

    Love your blog.


    I'm also in awe of people who find 'violence' entertaining. I can't stand the television's line up of violence; I can't stand the movies that are made with nothing but violence. I can only believe they're trying to program us to 'accept violence' as a 'way of life' - if we see it simulated enough, will we become as numb as they are, to the atrocity????

    What are we being 'programmed' to think - why are they creating these games and movies/television shows filled with violence if not to cause the masses to accept this as a 'way of life'.

    When I saw my grandson playing some of this with his own dad, I scolded both of them.

    I told them if they wanted to play games like Scrabble (it teaches a person to spell); to play a harmless game that teaches a person something worthwhile, by all means. But when these games teach nothing but 'hunt, kill, rape, destroy', I think they are deadly and are just part and parcel of the overall plan to turn the compassionate human being into a robot with no feelings.

    I so appreciate your post - again - with such insight! Diane

  3. Haha, the screwballs. Expending all their energies fighting fake monsters because they can't and won't face themselves. The social scientists have done an excellent job keeping grown man infantilized and immature.

    Support your work, your blog, your prudence and perseverance. Energy of love dissolves the energy of hate. The sound of evil is loud and obnoxious, ain't it? I stand with you. Stick to your "guns" No pun intended. Hehe.

  4. Folks,

    I am so glad, relieved even, that you're with me on this. After two solid days of getting ripped a new one, I was feeling pretty beat up. I tried to be the best person I could be to rise to this because I don't think it helps to create discord. That was never my intent but that's what happened. I couldn't just leave it that way, I had to try to dissolve the discord and replace it with something positive, if I didn't do that I'm not helping, I'm a part of the problem.

    But I was getting pretty ragged. After putting hours into writing a full and meaningful response to one fellow who was at least decent to me, I realized I couldn't do that over and over and over again. So I used that single email, said that it was an email to one person and asked the recipients I sent it to to forgive the short cut but to read the email as it spoke to them too.

    Then the insults came in that I was "hiding behind" my "form letter". I mean come on, that's so unjustified and so selfish. I won't sit still for that, it's an invalid insult.

    I was also first criticized for taking the real names and email addresses out of my response email, and then scolded for not taking out the real name and address of one email I used as the example of the truly graphic and obnoxious emails I'm getting from this sector of society. I'm expected to protect my attacker, and I'm sorry, but that makes no sense at any level.

    I finally realized that those who want to be fair are doing that already, but those who childishly need to rebel against any thoughtful criticism are only out to hurt me and wear me down. I had to pull out of responding. I've said what I needed to say and they can take it or leave it, just as I can take or leave their game.

    I have to laugh though over an email I just got a couple of minutes ago, I want to share it with you. This was great. Apparently a gamer read this post. Here's what he sent me.

    "Dear Angie,

    I read your article, and as a long time wargamer of over 10 years, I couldn't agree more with you. After reading your well thought out and valid article, I've decided I want to kill you.

    All the best

    Gazrot Skullsmasha."

    Rofl. That was great, I loved that email. I would frame it if I had a frame handy, but it's framed in my heart.

    Anyway, thanks for speaking up about your perspectives on this. And as always, thank you for taking the time to leave your comments.


  5. My name is Adam. I am 21 and I am a wargamer. I have read the Space Marine death toy page as well as your blog on the stream of attacks you have received from my fellow wargamers.

    Before reading your blog and associated page I never associated real violence with the game I play. Heck I never even realised that violence was so widespread in the media and entertainment.

    I do agree that killing is wrong, violence is wrong, in whatever form it may take.

    I don't feel hard done by with what you wrote at all. In fact I admire your guts and the way in which you have dealt with all the hatred directed towards you.

    The reason I feel compelled to write here on your blog is to explain why people have reacted in such a way. They feel an attack on their hobby and they feel you have singled them/us out. If the page were not so focussed on Warhammer 40,000 I think there would have been less of a response to it from the gaming community.

    I am trying very hard not to justify it because in a way I cannot.

    I will say though that you have made me think very long and hard about my hobby and whether my children (when they are born in to this world) should be exposed to it.

    I hope to receive a reply from you soon.

    Thank you.

  6. Adam,

    Thank you so much for your comment. It's almost hard to express my thoughts at the moment. Suffice it to say that I really appreciate your willingness to investigate a different perspective and give it a fair hearing. Truth is a personal thing and it requires a high level of personal honesty, a strong desire for truth, to be open to further information that can often take us in very different directions than we expect and want to go in. I commend you for your own personal honesty and desire to use your own critical thinking skills to determine for yourself what has merit and what doesn't, based on more than comfortable preferences and group think acceptance of "the norm".

    I'm also very gratified to know my words were able to show you something that's been there all along and yet remained invisible. That's amazing and gratifying to me. I really appreciate you taking the time to say what you had to say.


  7. Adam,

    One more thing. There was a need to use a specific example to talk about for the death toys web page. It's not always very helpful to speak in generalities, it's necessary to be specific and to show exact examples in order to make any critique valid. I put up the manufacturers own webpages instead of leaving them out, which to me is required not only for fairness but again, to be specific.

    I understand how someone could take offense to what felt like an attack on their hobby, but the motivation was not to attack anything or anyone, it was to show something in a different light, and that can't be done without looking directly at it.


  8. Andrew Russell3:57 PM

    Hello, I'm a war gamer so I don't necessarily agree with everything your article says but i am siding with you on the grounds of the quite ridiculous amount of hatred you have received, i mean everyone is entitled to their way of thinking and to echo another commenter stick to your guns, i hold more respect for you than half these anonymous troll who have nothing better to do than flame you. The one comment I will make is that the Imperium is not shown as a glorious haven neither is genetic engineering seen as a fool proof method or anything other than Quote: ‘ a bastardardisation of mankind’ [see the cursed founding/ the raven guard background]

    I hope for a reply soon

  9. Ang,

    I can understand why you chose a specific example and not just generic terms.

    As I said I don't feel offended or hard done to by the death toys page. I just hope that some of my fellow wargamers take the time as I did to understand the 'argument' from the other side.

    If only people could apply the philosophy of 'looking from the other side' in general life, then I'm sure we could all live quite happily with each other's differences and respect each other's opinions.

    Thanks again for reading.

  10. Andrew,

    Thank you for your comment. It's good to hear all of the different perspectives around this.

    I have heard from several others much like yourself in that they do not feel it is necessary to agree on this in order to hold some mutual respect for each other, and that I am entitled to my opinion without argument.

    They have also expressed strong disagreement with the kind of brutal attacks that have been sent to me over this, they do not condone it and I've even gotten a couple of apologies from individuals who initially sent harsh emails and then reconsidered the legitimacy of that harshness.

    I think the vast majority of grown up gamers are really great guys. One of my favorite people in the world is an avid gamer and his moral character is the best.

    The word 'adult' is so over used and abused that it's almost ruined, but for what it's worth, there is something legitimate in the idea of needing to be an adult to fully appreciate the things about these games that are legitimately there to appreciate. From a genuine adult perspective, in a person who has indeed thought about all of these things, whose own sense of personal morality and values are self generated and self owned, who does not "enjoy" mindless violence, I see nothing wrong whatsoever in people like that engaging in these games for relaxation and enjoyment. It is undeniable that there is a lot of fun to be had with them. The stories are compelling, the characters creative and artistic, and the hobby aspect is absolutely legitimate. I never criticized any of that or any adults who play this game.

    What this experience revealed to me at least, is that a fair number of players don't have the kind of thinking awareness or general moral philosophy to engage in the game as I am sure the makers of it intended for it. It is aimed at and is made for critically thinking adults, but the reality is that it does end up in the interested hands of children and other people who are getting things out of it that the makers never intended and wouldn't feel good about. That can't be helped, it's just the way the world works.

    My sole motivation for bringing any of this up was to get to parents especially, but anyone who had never thought about these other things, and get them to think about it. No one has to agree with me, but some do end up agreeing. All that matters to me is that people are conscious of how seemingly innocuous things affect us personally and how they can affect greater society.

    Thank you for taking the time to state your perspective, and thanks for sticking up for me on the basis of fair play.


  11. Adam,

    "If only people could apply the philosophy of 'looking from the other side' in general life, then I'm sure we could all live quite happily with each other's differences and respect each other's opinions."

    That nugget of truth is the basis of human morality. Knowing it and understanding it would keep us out of a great many needless wars of profit and conquest. That truth is easy to understand, even children get it. It is something that has to be indoctrinated out of people, and when it is, we get trouble and violence and all manner of injustice.

    Thanks again for your comments.


  12. Anytime someone responds with that much emotion to an opinion, there is something deeper at work.
    I don't really understand the attraction to these games, but I have a hypothesis;
    "Winning" the game or doing well in it is a kind of control for people who have no control over the circumstances of their non-virtual lives.
    The game makes them feel skilled, macho, strong, in control: all of the things society tells men they are supposed to enjoy feeling.

    As poorly as women have been treated in society, men have suffered a much deeper injustice.
    It isn't OK for men to feel compassion, or sadness, or grief, or any other "tender" feelings. If they feel those things, they'd better hide it, or they'll be labelled "pu**ies" or wimps or fags.
    It all goes back to control. When they play the game they feel in control. Control is the reason rapists rape. Control is the reason serial killers murder. Control is the reason these games exist in the first place.
    Control is also the primary reason for war.

    The sense of control one gets from the game seems harmless compared to rapists and murderers, but it does work on a deeper level.
    I truly believe we create our reality with the amount of energy we put into thoughts and words and deeds.
    I've had it happen too often to me to believe otherwise.
    So with all this violent, controlling energy, what kind of reality are you creating?
    Not a nice one.
    But it is a reality that plays right into the schemes of the top murders and control freaks.
    Scary stuff.

    As far as scantily clad large breasted women running around with sharp things.....
    I had a ball with my chainsaw after Hurricane Katrina cutting up fallen trees in nothing but flip flops. Not the brightest decision, given there were no emergency services and no phone service, but I lived.
    I'd guess I'm the exception.

    Anyhoo, great post. And you're right, with a message as positive and revolutionary as yours, even bad press is good press.
    Congrats on going viral.

  13. Ang,
    Thanks for taking on the violent video game "industry," which seems to be sucking in more and more hordes of credulous consumers.

    I will never, ever allow my child to view or participate in violent video games. In fact, any video game made after about 1985 is out. I plan to get my old Commodore 64 going someday soon for my kid... for one thing, you have to learn to program the thing.

    There may be a developing nexus of evil in the gaming industry - the military is using it as a recruiting tool, methinks.

    What a hobby - does anyone consider going outside and trying a hobby that involves the real world anymore, such as fishing or gardening? And if you want to shoot something, try hunting. It's a noble hobby if done right, with respect for the prey. But that also is too rare...

  14. Robert12:30 AM

    I'm almost 30 and have been an avid gamer all my life. My family played all of the classic board and card games growing up. I've played video games since age two. I've been in and out of the table top war gaming scene throughout my life.

    Every once in a while someone tries to pin point the causes of society's problems and our violent hobbies always seem to come up. It doesn't anger or upset me when this occurs because despite your best efforts, these hobbies and past-times aren't going anywhere. If anything I'm saddened by the fact that you would like to do good with your life but are misplacing your efforts.

    Maybe I'm not understanding clearly, but what I constantly here is that violence in the media and entertainment are directly related to the amount of violence in society. Well this is clearly not the case. The world has aways been violent and video games and movies are only an invention of the last century. So they're not the cause.

    Nor does being witness to violence make someone more inclined to be violent. If witnessing violence truly caused individuals to be violent, then no soldier that fought for their country could be peacefully reintroduced to society. I've met a few veterans of war and they are not violent people even though they've seen atrocities I've only read about.

    I don't think these movies or hobbies desensitize the human reaction to violence either. Go ahead and take any individual raised on violent movies, games, and literature and throw them into the front lines of war. Let's see how desensitized they are when the person next to them suddenly disappears and they realized they're covered in tiny bits of blood, flesh, brains, and bone. Oh who am I kidding? Of course someone that's watched a million and one horror movies would have no reaction to something as silly as that!

    You made a big deal about how all violence, real or on a giant screen, is perceived as real by our brains. Well, so what? Your brain and body may unconsciously have a reaction to what you're seeing, but the fact that it's not real still affects those unconscious reactions. Let's take your average Friday the 13th movie where big scary Jason slices someone apart with his machete. When this happens in the theater some of the audience turns their head, shuts their eyes, and screams. Let's just imagine that the person next to you has been sliced apart with a machete. Is your reaction to turn your head, shut your eyes, and scream? I'd think the more realistic reaction would be to run away as fast as you could or to throw up on the spot. I've never seen anyone do that in a theater.

    You say you don't find any form of violence entertaining, well neither do I. There's two sides to this fence. On my side of the fence, I don't associate violence with the games. I don't play them to surround myself in a violent world; that has nothing to do with it. On my side of the fence I say, “It's just a game.” On your side of the fence all you see is the violence. You see people that can't cope with their everyday lives so they have to release their frustrations in a fictitious violent world where everything goes! On your side of the fence you say, “It's not just a game.” I don't know of any way to convince you that the game is, in fact, not about actual violence; but here's my best effort. People in intimate relationships have been known to enact rape fantasies. If one partner were to genuinely be hurt during such a fantasy or want to stop it for any reason, do you think the other partner would not respect their wishes? My guess is if one person said, “Ok that's enough.” the other would go right along with it. Why? Because it is just a fantasy, albeit based around a sordid topic; but it is definitely not actual rape.

    (To be continued...)

  15. Robert12:31 AM

    You make it sound like people who play these games are bloodthirsty ghouls whose only solution to their daily problems is to kill something. Gamers or religious zealots, there aren't many people who'd say, “I'm going to kill Bob for eating my sandwich.” Very few people resort to killing as the initial approach to a problem.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but one of your major points seems to be that killing is not a solution. But then you say that you'd kill in self defense if you felt it was necessary. So it kind of goes without saying that killing, in fact, is a solution! It should be the final solution employed when no other options are available, but it can still be a solution. Then you say if you did have to kill in self-defense that you wouldn't find it amusing, as if it were relevant at all.

    Did you ever figure out why you got all those nasty e-mails from the gaming community? It has nothing to do with their game being violent or you “attacking” it for that matter. Violent and nasty behavior is one of the most base forms of human behavior. You said so yourself; it doesn't take any thinking to be violent. (Point of fact, that's why so many written rants are so incoherent in the first place; no thinking went into them.) But it does take considerable time, effort, energy, communication skills, and emotional intelligence to address you in a civilized manner like I'm doing now. Most people lack those skills however. Most people are not capable of emotionally removing themselves from a situation and reacting reasonably. For most people, when they feel attacked, they become defensive. People on the defensive are not able to properly use their tools. There's no time to communicate with someone that is attacking you physically; you just have to defend yourself. The same for these people when you “attacked” their hobby; they had to defend themselves and their hobby and they forgot how to use their tools.

    So how can we make the world a better place? Honestly, we need to make sure people have better tools to handle problems and we all need to try and make sure our first reaction is not a defensive one. Passing along these traits requires good role models and parents should always be first and foremost for a child in terms of role models. However we live in a fast-paced, keep up with the Joneses society. All in all, parents aren't doing enough parenting. Whether it's because the parent is a single parent working two jobs or both parents are both working, parents just aren't there like they used to be. Women wanted equal opportunity in the workforce, which is fine, I 'm all for that. Whether they actually have equal opportunity is up for debate, but there are more women working now than there were 50 years ago. So in the past 50 years both parents have left the house and nobody has stayed home to watch the children; then you wonder why we have problems! Maybe, just maybe, if we had affordable health care, reasonable retirement plans, affordable housing, or any number of facilities provided in other modern countries, both parents wouldn't have to work! Or that single parent could get by on one job instead of two! That leaves someone home to raise and nurture the children into better adults.

    (To be continued...)

  16. Robert12:31 AM

    And now for something entirely different! I see you have some links on your blog.

    “Think Or Be Eaten.” Are you a member of Mensa or something? If I don't live up to your intellectual standard am I to be eaten? I'm confused as to why, on your article about how killing is wrong, you're advocating cannibalism. Say what you want to defend it, but I clearly see that you like to eat dumb people.

    “The Cleaver.” Aren't cleavers used for chopping meat? I find it suspicious a page advertising cannibalism is also advertising cleavers; what kind of meat are you chopping there, Ms. Cannibal?

    “The Onion.” So let's write a big long blog post about how killing is wrong. Then let's link to The Onion, a satirical news source that, among other things, makes fun of retarded children.

    See how stupid that sounds? :)

  17. Maitreya,

    You've made some interesting points there. The control aspect is definitely there. Control is the whole point of force. When someone wants something against someone elses free will, force is the only way to get it. I think that's what so upsetting and questionable about all forms of force. We've gotten into trouble in this country because we give blanket authority to vast organizations to use force at will, which ethically, technically, can't be legitimate. It brings up all kinds of questions of right and need and responsibility that get swept away under titles of credibility. That's led to casual use of force and compliance weaponry. It's just one great big control party out there anymore. Control addicts get upset, even furious, when their blanket authority to use force gets rationally questioned. It makes it pretty hard to use oversight or take common sense steps to ensure the authority to use force is not abused. As we see every day, it is consistently abused.

    Thank you for the thought provoking comment.


  18. Robert,

    All you have to say is that you disagree.

    Relax, it's only a discussion, okay? It's just something to think about.


  19. Robert1:27 AM

    The only reason I'd say I disagreed without saying why is if I felt you weren't capable of understanding the why.

    But since you seem to be capable of understanding communication and this is a discussion, I felt it warranted to explain my viewpoint. After all what point is a discussion if you voice your opinion and everyone chimes in to agree? That's not a discussion, that's a sermon or a seminar. ;)

    Believe me when I say I've thought long and hard about this topic. The only conclusion I can draw is the logic behind drawing a correlation between violence in entertainment and the media and violence in society (or acceptance of violence) is not sound logic. There are too many people that should be violent that aren't; likewise there are too many people that are violent that shouldn't be.

    "Relax, it's only a discussion, okay?"
    If you knew me in real life, then you'd realize how funny it is to tell me to relax. Anyways...

    "It's just something to think about."

  20. Robert,

    I have heard everything you've written dozens and dozens of times already. I still don't understand what your objection is.

    You need to do a little bit of research into the subject of how violent media and games of violence affect people. The studies are out there and the results have been in for a long time. There is no question about the link between violent media and real violence.

    Your comments tell me you aren't listening and don't care to. You want to be angry. That's your option. But you're not bringing anything to the table but a stubborn temper tantrum.


  21. Anonymous7:59 AM

    As an avid gamer (the common no lifer) myself i can see where your coming from, the whole death and killing been trivialized for our entertainment, ive always noticed the amount of killing certain games can condone as ok and how much shit there is in certain games. you definitely haven't hit the worst one i can guarantee you that

    Look at the market, please find me a decent selection of games that are both fun and not based around killing something, Good luck that's all im going to say, its one of the easiest things to market into a game other than sports.

    you shouldnt be gettin as much hate as you seem to be gettin, then again in their eyes your seen as some sort of crackpot.

    id respond with a more intelligent reply but i just woke up and after seeing some stupid fuck kill his mother because she took away halo 3 in the news today, linking it to a mate and him bringing me back to your site once again, i just had to read it.

    get a personal assistant, id be more than happy to read through each of their reply's, would be quite a laugh

    @ Phubulis, its already been discovered that the army uses it as a recruiting tool, theres a game called America's army which they try to make as realistic as possible and they use it to judge accuracy and rate of survival between people that play it.

  22. I notice that comments are moderated, so I don't expect to see this turning up on the page. However, the most obvious issue here is: these games are not aimed at children. Games Workshop has the youngest target demographic of any of the many wargaming companies out there, but it's products are all clearly labled as being anything but toys and unsuitable for people under twelve years of age.

    While I'm posting, how do you feel about WWII wargaming?

  23. Arquinsiel,

    That's a great name.

    Yes the game is targeted at adults, or at least people 12 and up, but that doesn't keep kids from getting into it, does it?

    How do I feel about WW2 games? You're not getting the point. How I feel is not the point. The subject is violence in entertainment and whether that makes all that much sense. That's the question I am asking people to consider for themselves.

    This isn't about me or you personally, it's about a bigger picture and a valid exploration.
    Did you actually read my blog post and still not get that?

    Why would you assume your comment wouldn't be posted? Several gamers comments have been posted. As a matter of fact they've all been posted, except for one which I messed up on and lost it. I rarely XO comments. But you are welcome to post comments here, why wouldn't you be?


  24. Well to be honest your website presents itself in a style most commonly associated with the Lunatic Fringe and the note that moderation has been enabled tends to suggest that comments that don't suit the agenda of the blog owner won't be published. Secondly you've deactivated email addresses on your site. Just isn't indicative of someone willing to engage in debate. You have though, so points for that.

    Anyway, for the TL;DR version of my philosophy, I don't believe in absolute morality. The simple fact of the matter is that that the concept of a "right" is an artificial construct which we use to ensure our survival on a species level. The right to life is only as valid as we decide to make it, and killing is a natural state which we have distanced ourselves from as a species through abstracted concepts and superior technology. To eat chicken we don't have to snap it's neck ourselves, we just go to the store.

    Vegetarians and even vegans are no better, as life is life regardless of form. A plant has as much right (or lack thereof) to live as you or I.

    I think another issue here is your apparent inability to determine synthesized from real stimulus. I know that, through examination of movies and games and the construction thereof, that if my heart starts to beat faster at a particular point that the creator is manipulating instincts left in my makeup from when my ancestors were monkeys afraid of the big cats. I can then logically turn off the fear response and relax. The last time I jumped when watching a movie was when some other patron of the cinema screamed in the seat behind me, and I've always had a bad thing for sudden or loud noise (long story involving jet engines....) rather than the movie itself (which was, incidentally, a rather nicely done horror movie).

    I know myself that I can always determine when myself or a friend is talking about something that actually happened or something they saw in a movie or in a game. My parent's generation seem to be unable to do so, which may be partially related to them growing up without a TV in every house, let alone every room.

    Finally, another way of looking at the issue is to take a wargame and, as players inevitably do, look into the background and theory of it. If that doesn't serve as a motivation to find better ways of solving issues then what will?

    Anyway, I've gone on way too long here, and I think my point of view will require a bit too much of a paradigm shift for most people to accept so... *shrug* I dunno, have fun?

  25. Arquinsiel,

    Thanks for your two cents. Believe it or not, I've heard the points you've brought up more times than I can count. The response is very game-centric, and as I keep saying and not getting through is that this isn't about getting deeper into the game, it's about stepping away from it and asking questions from a, I don't know, what, a more of a philosophical stand point.

    Just asking about what it means when we embrace violence as fun without looking back. Does it reflect something about society? Or is it possible that it can affect society in some way?

    This is why the particular gaming details of Warhammer aren't going to address the general concept I'm bringing up.

    The fact is that there is a direct relationship between children who view violent media and violent behavior. That comes out of medical, psychological and military studies. It's fact, there's no argument that the influence can be profound.

    Which is why my focus was specifically on parents first, but anyone who has never thought about it.

    Quite a few gamers incorrectly decided that I was attacking them when in fact, I gave the whole lot of them the benefit of the doubt. I figured adults who play these games are capable of putting it all in the right order for themselves and deciding for themselves what they want to do.

    That's why it's blown me out of the water to be bombarded with hate mail. It's completely from an alternate universe that I never called on. It's not about any of these people.

    And I didn't ask for a debate. There's nothing to debate. After +22,300 visits to that one little web page in six days, and the barrage of out in left field furious hate mail I got bombarded with and it's still coming, I had every right to take down my email address. It's unfair to expect me to take everything that hundreds of you want to send me that is completely off topic from what I'm even talking about. And the number of pure nasty emails I got, well I don't owe anyone that. I'm not going to listen to that kind of idiocy. Who would?

    Plus I've knocked myself out trying to respond to anyone who shows the slightest interest in hearing me out, so really, don't ding me for not being willing to deal with a thousand emails. I've done far more to make peace than the gaming community at large has.

    And realize too, I didn't ask for any of this. I did not come barging into gamer territory and start insulting people or saying rude things or criticizing their game and demanding a debate. I was minding my own business at my own little website with a page that's been up for almost two years. It was one of yours who dragged me out to be sacrificed before millions of angry gamers who don't even care to try to see what I'm saying. They don't have to agree, but they do have to let me have my say, even if they don't like it. It's no skin off their noses. It's quite bizarre for complete strangers to get in my face when it's not anyone's place to do that. To them it's only one thing, I'm the enemy and that's all there is to it. They feel entitled to say anything they want to and they're not entitled to do that. Or at least, I don't have to listen to it. They don't want to listen to me but I'm bad for not wanting to be raked over the coals for no reason?

    From my perspective, I'm the one who's been attacked and misunderstood. I'm the one who's trying to reach out. I've even put a gamers statement on my web page in the hopes of them being able to see that I am not being unfair with them. But even that's not enough. How many gamers sites would give me space on their pages to say what I have to say? I don't think any would do that. So, who is being unfair? Who is attacking who?

    Know what I mean?

    Anyone who's taken the time to approach me "unarmed" finds out I'm not bad and I'm saying something they probably don't have any problem with.

    Anyway, thanks for your comment.


  26. Anonymous7:22 PM

    Ang/Vyz, not sure...

    Anywayz, Thanks for providing The Informer, and please keep up with the monthly comments along with your monthly recaps of the archives! I've been a listener for some time, since falling down the rabbit, like so many have done post 9-11.

    I'm also an ardent gamer, albeit anymore, a jaded gamer. I'm more a fan of Doom, (good guy killing hellspawn) vs modern gaming (EA sponsored Mercenaries looking like Hellspawn killing people).
    The responses you are mainly going to get are like posting something like this on slashdot:
    A lot of up their own arse geeks thinking they know it all. Believe me, I used to be one.

    I do applaud some of the open minded souls posting here though.

  27. Anonymous9:27 PM

    A surprising and interesting post!

    Thank you.

    The gaming world has held no interest for me--or my computer is to small anyway (which of these is true? As the graphics get better the games get dumber.)--so I had no idea what is out there.

    (And one of your respondants assures us Warhammer is not even the worst!)

    Addiction? Definitely!

    Denial? Sure--most addicts are in denial about their addiction: It is part of the addictive process. Anger is the usual reaction to anything which might provoke the beginnings of self-awareness.

    Psychological conditioning? Definitely, and most deliberate, too. The Empire is finding a deep need for devoted, psychopathic killers: It is the only way possession of the World's remaining resources might be maintained.

    For one brought up in the ideas of democracy, this last point is extremely disturbing, but what of it? American democracy is long past. In these games one can see the future our financial and political elites intend for us.


  28. tony_opmoc5:58 PM


    A Couple of weeks ago I read what you wrote about Leadership and I fell in Love with You.

    I am sort of sad and happy that your Worldview has gone viral

    I am happy that your words and thoughts have received a much wider audience

    But sad that these little boys actually took their venom out on you

    But you displayed the most wonderful humanity by becomming upset about it

    What you may slowly be beginning to realise is that these boys are getting their hard wired aggresion out on a computer screen - and it is a simulation

    You said there were 3 Million of them Fighting Each Other On a Computer Screen

    The Percentage of Them That Actually Go Out and Do It For Real - Is Massively REDUCED By Playing Computer Games

    The Statistics PROVE IT

    But anyway


    Love & Peace,


    PS = Its Not The Boys Playing Computer Games That Are The Problem

  29. Tony,

    I agree with what you said.

    The focus of my web page was specifically on parents with small children. My whole point was to make parents aware of the violence in games that they might not have any clue exists. That's the entirety of my message there.

    How adults who play the game think and feel was not the subject. I made no judgements about that. The pluses and minuses of the game were not the subject either and were not mentioned because they weren't pertinent. The target audience was parents with small children, not people who already know everything there is to know about fantasy war games.

    It's been a bit like asking Ted if he'd like orange juice and having Bill answer to say "NO!" I wasn't talking to Bill but Bill doesn't care who I was talking to. And if I even try to pour OJ for Ted, Bill will come unglued.

    I sincerely hope that playing pretend war games reduces real life violence. It doesn't reduce rudeness though, that much I'm sure of.

    Thanks for your interesting two cents. You're a charmer. Works for me.


  30. Hi,

    I am a long term wargamer, of sorts, who has just read your very thought provoking argument. I agree with you that many people in our hobby do get too involved mentally in the game and cannot seperate fantasy from real life. Many others however, are capable of telling the difference and not letting the one affect the other, which is what I hope and believe I do.

    Generally, despite seeiung your point of view, I beleive you are naive and really ought to do further research into the wargaming hobby, maybe doing some more interviews with a wider selection of wargamers, ideally not those from the 40k online site as they are a 'bit' odd and not representitive of the whole community.
    I myself am an historian at a Russell Group university in the north of England (UK), and I speacialize in military history, its causes and its affects, so I do have strong views on this subject. There are many journal articles from the military history journal that may help you to gain perspective on this hobby of ours.

    As a wargamer I play the 12th SS Hitlerjugend. However, I do not have Nazi sympathies. I play them because I respect the fact they fought their country just as my great grandfathers and two great uncles fought for theirs(Britain).

    Interestingly, after some research on the subject I believe it may have been a soldier of the 12th SS who killed my great grandfather in July 1944 in Normandy during operation Goodwood. So, does playing with the lap dogs of hitler affect my personal life or my views? I think not, except to deplore them. It has, however, given me an insight into the brainwashing that occured in Nazi Germany that compelled a generation of youths to fight and die for their country.

    I see wargaming, historical wargaming that is, not sciewnce fiction, as an opportunity to teach the younger generation who have never witnessed war, to appreaciate its evil, to learn about it, so they won't commit the same errors themselves.

    I hope you feel the need to seek further information on this subject, so please feel free to email me if you so wish, although I understand that you may not wish to enter into a debate.