View Full Version : D&D Game Shame

PnP News Bot
10-23-2008, 11:40 PM

Check out this new article Wizards of the Coast posted recently:

Game Shame (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/drcw/20081024b)

Shelly wondered why some people seem ashamed of their hobby, so she conducted some experiements to see if there really is a stigma attached to played D&D.

10-24-2008, 01:25 AM
Okay, this article is some sort of brilliant. Go Shelley go!


10-24-2008, 11:26 AM
Very good article, and yes there is some social stigma attached to D&D because it was marketed heavily as a children's game back in the day and people seem to think we all have Peter Pan syndrome, never bathe and live in our parents basement. Sadly, these stereotypes do have some basis, though very small I think. I think people should be open about the hobby but not obsessively weird about it (you know what I mean). On second thought, maybe we've been taking the wrong tack with this. From now on beat the crap out of anyone who makes fun of you because you play D&D :boxing: . If everyone joins in on the violence we shall soon be the hobby that is universally feared again.........mmmmmmwwwwwaaaaaahhhhahahahahahahaha h!

10-26-2008, 02:07 PM
Great article. I think Shelly hit the nail on the head with the solution to the "shame" problem: Be who you are in public and don't try to hide anything.

I've never hid what I do to the general public and never really suffered for it. When I was in school it never stopped me from dating attractive girls. Same in college, I played proudly, threw keggers, and had a great time. Even when I married and moved across the country and became familiar with my wife's entire friend and family list of non-gamers, I didn't hide it.

To be sure some folks treated D&D as some geeky thing from their school days at every step, but they didn't put the hate on me and I didn't try to convert them all to D&D as if it was some crazy cult-like religion. It's something I like and is no different than my brother-in-law's freakish obsession with a college he never attended. ;)

Have I ever met people who instantly pegged me as "strange" because I'm a gamer? Yup, I sure have. I grew up in a traditional redneck town, and was imported into the land that brought us "The Real Housewives of Orange County" and have met a few people who are stuck on the stereotype.

Thing is, this hobby landed me a career in the (computer) gaming industry, doing something I love, and I make enough money to afford two homes in two states (against my will mind you, if you are in SW MI and want a home -- call me please! ;p). When people from my past or present that are snooty about gaming bump into me and we "catch up" and they discover that I'm doing pretty well with gaming, all things considered, it surprises them to the point where they question their assumptions and stop questioning me.

Example: Last night at our Halloween party, a school teacher I've recently met started asking about my business and the economy. He was surprised to hear that online games aren't suffering, until I explained that on a tight budget $15 for a full month of gaming is a better deal than even the movies (which do well in recessions) and he got it. He understood how serious this business is, and had new respect for my hobbies. He left interested, and I counted that as a win.

10-26-2008, 02:22 PM
Is anyone else having trouble trying to see the article. I get to the D&D website but then I click on the link, I get a "This page doesn't exist."

10-27-2008, 01:07 PM
I can't get to it either and I'd really like to read it.

10-27-2008, 04:31 PM
I read the story. It's great! Here's a better link for those you couldn't get to the last one:


10-27-2008, 04:48 PM
The Kidz nowadays don't understand cause they never had to put up with BADD and the whole "D&D is the Occult" and the Jack Chick tracts back in the '70's and '80s. If you lived in a small town in the Bible Belt back then it was like being part of an underground organization. You didn't tell anyone that you were a gamer, and when you did find other gamers you became instant friends.

I've tried to explain it to people who weren't gaming(or who were born after it) back then and I always just get blank stares...

10-27-2008, 08:38 PM
When I was in high school, I actually held on to a friend of mine's 1st ed. players handbook. He was afraid his parents might find it and destroy it.

Playboy mags -- those he kept in his room without fear.

D&D -- straight from the devil.

And personally, I have had to more than once explain that the hobby is not itself inherently evil. Ah, the joys of living in the Bible Belt.


10-28-2008, 01:52 AM
Anyone remember that awful novel/movie Mazes and Monsters? After that movie, I had to patiently explain to my parents that it was just a game, and it wasn't going to turn into a sewer-crawling suicidal schizophrenic.

Not from D&D, anyway.

While I never personally experienced any sort of discrimination -- again, not for D&D's sake at any rate -- I heard all about the "D&D suicides" and the "guy that played D&D for real and went missing". Because, apparently, depressed and lonely teenagers living with ignorant parents (http://www.rpgstudies.net/stackpole/pulling_report.html), or a screwed up high-school-aged kid in college getting himself in real trouble (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steam_tunnel_incident), isn't exciting enough.

10-28-2008, 02:23 AM
Yuck! All Mazes and monsters did was hurt gaming. True its damn funny. But in the long run it hurt the gaming commuity more. How many parents saw this and then went and threw there kids books away?
The 80s anit gaming hysteria led by the group B.A.D.D. or bother about Dungeons and dragons. really did suppres the gaming world as a whole. This led to losing demons and devils in 2nd ed. And the removal of the assassin class.
True devils and demons would later apear under another name but it goes to show that there was a big enough movment out there to make TSR change the way they did things.

On that note here is the 60 minutes show on D&D from 1985
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XbcWKWp2UE4 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XbcWKWp2UE4)

It has already some up on this forum.