Monday, April 14, 2014

Oh My, there He Goes Again.

There is a strain of thought out there that in order to be 'important' or 'relevant' to a topic you have to be original. In our hobby of role playing games this translates to the belief that you have push the limits of what people can accept. Weird settings where mutations and death are considered a bonus feature and not a detraction abound; and neigh indestructible monsters roam every blog and forum with their avant-garde creators behind them proclaiming, "Look at me! I am a creative genius! Gaze upon my glory and weep for your own failures."

Yet for all the noise this clamor of being original is nothing more than idle talk. The paintings you've done are derivative of other artists and the books you've written are just two steps away from plagiarism. Stop pretending that what you're doing is new and has never been dreamed before. Instead acknowledge that you follow other ideas but that you do them through the lens of your own vision. Your orcs are not the same as mine, nor could they be. Each of us creates a unique world where the creatures, inhabitants, and structures may share names and tangential connections but the reality is that they are different in fundamental ways. 

My Dyvers is not the same as the one described in the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer. I admit this freely and without trepidation. It's cruder, deadly, and as brutal as the worlds I've inhabited in my own head since I first picked up a novel and said, "Fuck yes." I mix technology and science without fear or care for your judgements.

This isn't a manifesto and it certainly isn't me bitching about your latest interpretation on the wastes to the east. This is about the people who pretend that they're so god damned original and yet they can't admit - even to themselves - that what they're doing is no more original than drawing a circle and coloring it blue. 

Own who you are and stop with the pretense.

8 comments:

  1. Ahahahah! Charlie, have you eaten heavy today? :-p

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  2. I feel like I missed something here....

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    Replies
    1. I just had my fill of pretentiousness is all Timothy.

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  3. I enjoy these posts. I don't quite know what's going on. But I enjoy them.

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  4. You can do new stuff without being original, and you can be interesting and relevant without having anything new to say. The only thing original you can bring to a discussion is yourself, and it can be argued that a person is derivative anyhow. ;)

    --Dither

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