I wrote this last night and wasn’t going to post it, but . . . here's my angry gibberish rant anyway.
reading this post from Alexis and listening to the first episode of the there and back again podcast has focused my attention this week. dnd and rpgs and other creative work is often labeled as a waste of time, trivial, simply 'fun'. well I’ve had it I’m sick of it. dnd is not just a game for me. and it shouldn't be for anyone who cares to put just a little bit of effort in. is basketball trivial. is it played just because it is fun? right now the winter Olympics are on, what makes the things done there important or trivial? is it important because it isn't fun? or because it is? do the performers enjoy skiing, skating, playing hockey? are they in the Olympics because it is fun are they celebrated because they had a fun time, no that is ridiculous. they compete to be the best at what they do, yes, they may take some joy from it and have fun along the way, but if you tell a hockey player to loosen up and just have some fun because its only a game you might be knocked on your butt.
or to compare another popular game, what about Magic: the gathering of all your money. do people play only because it is fun, is that their only object in playing? don’t people play games for other reasons to have fun, what about competition? that doesn't apply to dnd because it’s a cooperative game? bull shit. do you think dnd is combat oriented just because all nerds have violent tendencies. yeah. right. just like video game encourage violence in among young people. no, don’t be stupid. combat=competition. the players are constantly in competition with the dm, the setting as presented by the dm, trying not to have a character die in the dangerous situations presented by the dm. so yes dnd is just a game. basketball is just a game, risk is just a game, magic is just a game. guess what life is just a game. I can't think of any games where the object is to have fun, is there a game out there where the goal of the game is to have fun? fun is common byproduct of games, and pretty much a lot of other experiences in life. fun is not limited to games. just because you expect a game to be fun doesn't mean that is the reason you are playing the game.
p.s. I don't feel like taking the time to find the quotes from mythopoeia or the podcast, you can listen to it here.