This is a site for discussing roleplaying games. Have fun doing so, but there is one major rule: do not discuss political issues that aren't directly and uniquely related to the subject of the thread and about gaming. While this site is dedicated to free speech, the following will not be tolerated: devolving a thread into unrelated political discussion, sockpuppeting (using multiple and/or bogus accounts), disrupting topics without contributing to them, and posting images that could get someone fired in the workplace (an external link is OK, but clearly mark it as Not Safe For Work, or NSFW). If you receive a warning, please take it seriously and either move on to another topic or steer the discussion back to its original RPG-related theme.
The message boards have been upgraded. Please log in to your existing account by clicking here. It will ask twice, so that it can properly update your password and login information. If it has trouble recognizing your password, click the 'Forgot your password?' link to reset it with a new password sent to your email address on file.

Author Topic: Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"  (Read 4877 times)

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« on: August 07, 2019, 01:57:11 pm »
Link:

http://decafbad.net/2019/08/05/the-fate-accessibility-toolkit-or-why-itll-take-me-a-while-to-really-play-gurps-again/?fbclid=IwAR1XMFyBcCfd_Y5Iry578rqDLF6j-3NCAt5raRnW6EesMNhTxNWWj-la66A

The tl;dr here seems to be that GURPS may be somewhat 'problematic', in that it shouldn't rate disabilities at different point values, because it "sends a signal to those who are disabled that what they're going through is simply there to help keep characters from being too powerful and too perfect."

Of course, I think this is a complete load of bollocks; and beyond, that this could somehow affect one's ability to enjoy a fucking roleplaying game. But I'm interested in hearing what others here think.
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.

Steven Mitchell

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • S
  • Posts: 2336
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2019, 02:19:28 pm »
Anyone who thinks that should definitely not play GURPS.  Or Hero System.  Or really any game created before 1995 or any of their later versions.  Or most of the games that don't fit into that window.  Just to be absolutely safe, don't play any of them.  They might stumble on one that I missed.

estar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9632
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2019, 02:21:15 pm »
Well as somebody with a disability, severe partial deafness + language difficulties, I am well aware that some people have it easier , and some have it harder. The situation that each of us find ourselves in is what it is along with what we have to do to live a normal life. If an RPG reflects the relative difficulty of various disabilities then it accurate.

As for GURPS specifically it may have a single point value attached there is also a paragraph of descriptive text and mechanics that explain the specific nuances of each disability. Unlike it is inaccurate in the description or mechanics, I don't have a problem with rating deafness at a lesser cost than blindness, or being quadriplegic.

GeekyBugle

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2434
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2019, 03:28:28 pm »
Lets see, in a universe where magic is real, not being able to use it IS a disability, not being as charming, strong, smart, dexterous, etc IS a disability. Which is why lower points can grant you a negative to add in rolls for that particular attribute.

Now, onto what the morally deficient moron who wrote that piece of garbage says.

So my character being dumb as a brick should not impact the rolls related to INT?

If my character looses all four limbs this should not impact his speed, jumping, etc?

If my character goes deaf it shouldn't impact his rolls to hear something?

These morons are trying to make "problematic"TM one aspect of the game that's trying to model reality to give it verisimilitude. Good for them, the number of people that hear/read that something is "problematic"TM and take it as a recommendation to go check it out is growing by the minute. The more idiotic shit they pull out of their collective asses the better.
“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjC7-w5KDKNiD-k0tVo1DPw?view_as=subscriber

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2019, 03:38:30 pm »
Quote from: Steven Mitchell;1098630
Just to be absolutely safe, don't play any of them.
This does appear to be the prevailing rationale...


Quote from: estar;1098631
Well as somebody with a disability, severe partial deafness + language difficulties, I am well aware that some people have it easier , and some have it harder. The situation that each of us find ourselves in is what it is along with what we have to do to live a normal life. If an RPG reflects the relative difficulty of various disabilities then it accurate.

As for GURPS specifically it may have a single point value attached there is also a paragraph of descriptive text and mechanics that explain the specific nuances of each disability. Unlike it is inaccurate in the description or mechanics, I don't have a problem with rating deafness at a lesser cost than blindness, or being quadriplegic.
I agree with each of your points. I think the biggest gripe one could levy at GURPS with regards to Disadvantages would be that some are simply misnomers. The "Honesty" disad is a good example of this, and it can make it unclear what a Disadvantage actually is unless you're familiar with it; I could see that being potentially offensive to someone if they felt a disability they had in reality was incorrectly modeled in the book in some fashion (though I have never actually seen or read about this happening, and I've played with plenty of people who had disabilities of one sort or another in varying degrees of severity).

What interests me continuously with regards to Evil Hat / Fate is the not-insignificant number of people with disabilities who have been displeased with them or their products (some of whom got banned from G+ when it was still around for voicing their complaints); including the Accessibility Toolkit (on the DTRPG page, even).

I recall one instance of a disabled person complaining about pandering and lack of plausibility with regards to one of the Fate "Worlds of Adventure" called "Deep Dark Blue;" essentially a sort of fantasy submarine setting. In any case, their complaint was that the book emphasizes the danger of being in the cramped/ramshackle sub interiors, while also including an apparently paraplegic/wheelchair-bound pregen PC (they were basically saying it felt unrealistic and unnecessary). I can't remember where the discussion went from there, aside from Fred Hicks essentially saying 'deal with it and fuck off' (which is what he says to pretty much everyone about pretty much every criticism; the guy is sort of a dick from what I've seen).
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2019, 03:45:55 pm »
Quote from: GeekyBugle;1098651
Lets see, in a universe where magic is real, not being able to use it IS a disability, not being as charming, strong, smart, dexterous, etc IS a disability. Which is why lower points can grant you a negative to add in rolls for that particular attribute.

[...]

These morons are trying to make "problematic"TM one aspect of the game that's trying to model reality to give it verisimilitude. Good for them, the number of people that hear/read that something is "problematic"TM and take it as a recommendation to go check it out is growing by the minute.

See, this is my real problem with this article. I get that the outrage brigade has to wave their big red flag every now and then to ward off the evil -ist demons, but how do you contemplate a point-buy system like GURPS and think that disadvantages are literally anything but a mechanical expression and game element? Not that I think point-buy is even a very good balancing method by itself, but pretending the Advantage/Disadvantage system is anything but a nod towards balance and mechanical proficiency is just... imagining yourself in a completely alien reality. It's not as if you're looking at a list of what disabilities are fucking "better" than another, you're looking at a point-valued expression/estimate of how limiting it will be with regards to a character's actions in the game world. It's not a literal value judgement assigned to people, unless then a 500-point evil supervillain is somehow objectively a "better" person than a 50-point social worker.

Edit: Oh, and that lovely little tidbit about "[GURPS tells disabled people] what they're going through is simply there to help keep characters from being too powerful and too perfect," what the fuck does that even mean? Because if you take Terminally Ill, you're going to have a hell of a lot more points to spend on skills, advantages and abilities than a non-disadvantaged character, especially in the realm of 50-point normals.

Also, so is "Honesty" something that's bad and keeps someone from being powerful or perfect simply because it's a disadvantage? What exactly qualifies as a disability, here? Because ALL Disadvantages are 'disabilities' in terms of the game itself. Perhaps SJGames should divide Disads into two categories, one that gives you no points (it's just a really long list of specifically statted out real-world disabilities; hm, I wonder how many pages that will take...) and one of "good/approved" disadvantages that are morally upright to accept points for.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2019, 04:02:03 pm by Antiquation! »
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.

Ratman_tf

  • Alt-Reich Shitlord
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5830
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2019, 03:46:17 pm »
Quote from: Antiquation!;1098628
Link:

http://decafbad.net/2019/08/05/the-fate-accessibility-toolkit-or-why-itll-take-me-a-while-to-really-play-gurps-again/?fbclid=IwAR1XMFyBcCfd_Y5Iry578rqDLF6j-3NCAt5raRnW6EesMNhTxNWWj-la66A

The tl;dr here seems to be that GURPS may be somewhat 'problematic', in that it shouldn't rate disabilities at different point values, because it "sends a signal to those who are disabled that what they're going through is simply there to help keep characters from being too powerful and too perfect."

Of course, I think this is a complete load of bollocks; and beyond, that this could somehow affect one's ability to enjoy a fucking roleplaying game. But I'm interested in hearing what others here think.

The notion of an exclusionary and hostile RPG community is a fever dream of zealots who view all social dynamics through a narrow keyhole of structural oppression.
-Haffrung

GeekyBugle

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2434
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2019, 03:56:53 pm »
Quote from: Antiquation!;1098655
See, this is my real problem with this article. I get that the outrage brigade has to wave their big red flag every now and then to ward off the evil -ist demons, but how do you contemplate a point-buy system like GURPS and think that disadvantages are literally anything but a mechanical expression and game element? Not that I think point-buy is even a very good balancing method by itself, but pretending the Advantage/Disadvantage system is anything but a nod towards balance and mechanical proficiency is just... imagining yourself in a completely alien reality. It's not as if you're looking at a list of what disabilities are fucking "better" than another, you're looking at a point-valued expression/estimate of how limiting it will be with regards to a character's actions in the game world. It's not a literal value judgement assigned to people, unless then a 500-point evil supervillain is somehow objectively a "better" person than a 50-point social worker.

But to these morons you HAVE to make a moral judgment and express it, and it HAS to be a moral judgment they agree with otherwise you're a bad evul istphobeTM.

You have to remember that to them everything IS political, and that their politics are identity based, and you have to cater to their feelings when they are fauxoutraged in behalf of someone who isn't. Or they will cry wacism, muhsoggyknees, and any other its/phobia they just pulled out of their ass.
“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjC7-w5KDKNiD-k0tVo1DPw?view_as=subscriber

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2019, 04:10:55 pm »
Quote from: Ratman_tf;1098656
[snip]

LOL! :p Too perfect.

Quote from: GeekyBugle;1098657
You have to remember that to them everything IS political, and that their politics are identity based, and you have to cater to their feelings when they are fauxoutraged in behalf of someone who isn't.

And to my eyes it's almost always well-off, far-left American college-goers who complain and rile up mobs over this type of shit, and almost never the demographics they speak openly for and claim to be assisting. It's just so tiresome at this point.
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.

Stephen Tannhauser

  • Curmudgeonly Refugee
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • S
  • Posts: 524
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2019, 04:13:30 pm »
I think the core primal mistake lies in the quoted designer's stated purpose, i.e.:

"As a game designer, I feel like the biggest gift I can give to players is the ability to see yourself in the universe you play in."

The fundamental problem, of course, is that the entire activity is intentionally built around the imagined portrayal of A PERSON WHO IS NOT THE PLAYER.

All PCs possess capacities and abilities the real-life player doesn't, or gain opportunities to make choices the real-life person never will. Nobody ever "sees himself" in his character in a literal sense; he sees an enhanced, fantastical fictional persona who at best shares some of his own personality traits and brings some of his own perspectives to the fictional choices of the game. And any in-game character limitation a player builds into his design is there either for the sake of its own fun value, or because the player has decided it's an acceptable price for another in-game capacity he wants badly enough. An obstacle which provides neither fun nor reward is not worth overcoming.

If what Ms. Sjunneson-Henry means by "seeing yourself in the universe you play in" is "an RPG experience where a character can share his player's real-life disability, but find it no more a hindrance to the character than the player finds his own circumstances a 'hindrance' to him," it seems to me that this obviates the point of imagining fictional characters in fictional universes at all. If an ostensible "handicap" is neither an obstacle nor a benefit in game terms, there's no point in defining it in game terms.
Better to keep silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt. -- Mark Twain

STR 8 DEX 10 CON 10 INT 11 WIS 6 CHA 3

Stephen Tannhauser

  • Curmudgeonly Refugee
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • S
  • Posts: 524
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2019, 04:23:21 pm »
Quote from: Antiquation!;1098654
I can't remember where the discussion went from there, aside from Fred Hicks essentially saying 'deal with it and fuck off' (which is what he says to pretty much everyone about pretty much every criticism; the guy is sort of a dick from what I've seen).

He was a good deal more civil to me the one time I complained about not understanding the game Don't Rest Your Head.

But in all fairness, that was over ten years ago, and pretty much everybody loses patience as they get older.  I'm considerably more of a dick now than I was back then.
Better to keep silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt. -- Mark Twain

STR 8 DEX 10 CON 10 INT 11 WIS 6 CHA 3

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2019, 04:25:34 pm »
Quote from: Stephen Tannhauser;1098659
The fundamental problem, of course, is that the entire activity is intentionally built around the imagined portrayal of A PERSON WHO IS NOT THE PLAYER.

[...]

If what Ms. Sjunneson-Henry means by "seeing yourself in the universe you play in" is "an RPG experience where a character can share his player's real-life disability, but find it no more a hindrance to the character than the player finds his own circumstances a 'hindrance' to him," it seems to me that this obviates the point of imagining fictional characters in fictional universes at all. If an ostensible "handicap" is neither an obstacle nor a benefit in game terms, there's no point in defining it in game terms.
These are excellent and compelling points I hadn't considered! Thinking back to the wheelchair-bound submarine crewman I mentioned earlier, that could explain some of the disabled person's frustration with it; not only is the disability apparently not an obstacle despite the conditions and demanding requirements of crewing a submarine, but I just checked and it doesn't show up in any form on the character sheet itself whatsoever.

Edit: So, I guess that could bring into question whether it was simply an art decision? If so, I could see that being interpreted as a form of pandering.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2019, 04:30:21 pm by Antiquation! »
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2019, 04:27:26 pm »
Quote from: Stephen Tannhauser;1098661
He was a good deal more civil to me the one time I complained about not understanding the game Don't Rest Your Head.

But in all fairness, that was over ten years ago, and pretty much everybody loses patience as they get older.  I'm considerably more of a dick now than I was back then.

I just make it clear I'm a dick up-front, so I don't have to worry so much about my condition worsening later. ;)
« Last Edit: August 07, 2019, 04:37:34 pm by Antiquation! »
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.

trechriron

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1849
    • View Profile
    • https://www.trechriron.com
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #13 on: August 07, 2019, 05:54:43 pm »
Quote from: Antiquation!;1098654
This does appear to be the prevailing rationale...

aside from Fred Hicks essentially saying 'deal with it and fuck off' (which is what he says to pretty much everyone about pretty much every criticism; the guy is sort of a dick from what I've seen).


This is the difference between Virtue-Signaling Ne'er-Do-Well Regressive Left Fake Social Justice Warriors and real people who actually give a shit. This is done for PR, kudos within the cult, and Outrage Brigade brownie points. No, the Pundit didn't pay me to say that (for those lurkers possibly astonished that the self-identified Liberal is getting tired of the bullshit...).

Fascists don't really care about the causes they use to oppress you. It makes total sense that these ding-dongs freak out when called on their bullshit.

Quote from: Stephen Tannhauser;1098659
I think the core primal mistake lies in the quoted designer's stated purpose, i.e.: ...


Spot on. Well said. Bob's your Uncle. I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
Trentin C Bergeron (trechriron)
Bard, Dreamer & RPG Enthusiast

----------------------------------------------------------------------
All About Me, RPG Stuff...
D.O.N.G. Black-Belt (Thanks tenbones!)
Unfortunately for the perma-offended, reality lacks a trigger warning. - Warboss Squee

Antiquation!

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 985
    • View Profile
Essay: "GURPS and the Fate Accessibility Toolkit"
« Reply #14 on: August 07, 2019, 06:18:44 pm »
Quote from: trechriron;1098676
This is the difference between Virtue-Signaling Ne'er-Do-Well Regressive Left Fake Social Justice Warriors and real people who actually give a shit. This is done for PR, kudos within the cult, and Outrage Brigade brownie points.

That is certainly exactly how it reads to me. I can't imagine how someone who actually games with disabled people could write something like this with a straight face.

Quote from: trechriron;1098676
No, the Pundit didn't pay me to say that (for those lurkers possibly astonished that the self-identified Liberal is getting tired of the bullshit...).

Now now trechriron, no need to fib, we all need to pad the pocketbook from time to time! :p
If you feel like you might be forming an opinion you are already a danger to yourself and others.