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The Many Faces of Gaming—Gaymers (Part One)

For more than a decade now, attitudes toward lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) individuals have shifted considerably in tabletop games and their associated media. Positions concerning these lifestyles vary widely from complete acceptance to rejection and condemnation. Some insist that these lifestyles are immoral, corruptive, and violate the laws of nature. Others hold that they are natural, have existed since the dawn of humanity, and are a part of everyday life. The position of this article tends toward the latter viewpoint, and it does so with a view to expanding tolerance in the tabletop gaming community.

For the purposes of this article, all individuals who identify as LGBTQ will be discussed under the banner of gaymers. This is not meant to minimize, denigrate, or oversimplify the difference of these individuals; it is more an effort to streamline the discourse. The term gaymer is a common rallying cry in the LGBTQ community. It is not meant to assume that any given person discussed here identifies as gay.

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Collection of Curiosities: The Glowing Tide Pools

"Jiro the Kobold" by Pat LoboykoAmid the luminescent tide pools of the shore, adventurers might have their attention snagged by something a bit unexpected as they walk by at night. You can roll randomly for a result below, or use the handy number provided with each entry to figure out your result on a d12. You can also pick the one that works for the area in which your characters currently linger.

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Prepared!: On the Water

Claude-Joseph Vernet - A Calm at a Mediterranean PortInevitably adventurers will be on a boat. Your party cannot be bound to land forever, and whether traveling by sturdy merchant ship or hastily constructed raft, you’ll need to fill some gaps. Prepared! has two water-logged scenarios ready to emerge from the rising waves and strong currents of your watery settings.

The Big One That Came Back

Setting the Scene: Gibbs Makla is the most successful fisherman in the region. His vessel, the Long Tooth, is famous not for the quantity of fish it hauls in, but for the size of its catch. Gibbs has a knack for landing the big ones, and he can do this due to a secret he uncovered a decade ago: hestumbled across some magical oil and discovered that a few drops applied to the gills of a still breathing animal would triple its size! Unfortunately, as often happens when magic is tampered with, Gibbs’s enchanted fish venture is in danger. The old mariner accidentally sprinkled a few drops onto a common crab, and the party encounters Gibbs aboard his ship wrestling the now calamitously large crab. The fisherman is surly and abrupt but calls out for the adventurers to “help send this clattering mess overboard.” With some successful social skill checks, he might reveal the truth about the giant crab and offer the party what remains of the oil. Using the oil could produce some unpredictable results. Regardless, helping Gibbs fight off the chitinous adversary gains them a free basket of fish (normal size) and a potential ally in the region.

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Hirsh-Dammung’s Units of Irregulars

CC3 Midgard Overland Map StyleHirschberg’s tradition of uniformed service runs deep. It is so ingrained that the locals boast that the bedclothes of its first soldier, Praeter Yohanis, are as stiff as his starch-pressed dress reds.

But even the elfmarked castellan of Castle Reln recognizes that a life of strict military discipline is not for everyone. The defense of the realm also depends on those who serve the city’s lawful authorities in civilian garb. Yohanis has been instrumental in establishing three units, his “irregulars” as he likes to call them, eager to apply their martial training outside the regular command structure.

Many adventurers see joining the irregulars as a gateway into Hirschberg society. This is especially true of non-elves and foreigners whose aim is ultimately to gain stewardship of a barony of their own. But natives also volunteer out of a sense of patriotism.

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The Many Faces of Gaming: Female Gamers

Midgard Elf Queen

Women occupy a unique role in gaming. Because gaming has long been a male-dominated hobby, women often come face-to-face with prejudice and stereotyping. The purpose of this article is to illustrate the challenges female gamers face as well as the many positive things that gender diversity brings to the gaming experience.

Gaming might be viewed by some as a “boy´s club,” one in which many young women are uninterested. Many female gamers are introduced to gaming in college, when the natural broadening of horizons of the university experience brings more women into contact with it. There is nothing inherent in gaming that suggests that men are any better or more suited to it, but due to social conditioning, many women do not become involved in it. More and more intrepid souls are breaking out of this mold, taking a journey into unfamiliar territory. Today, some young women are coming into gaming earlier than was common in the past, and discovering that it is as natural a joy for them as it is for men. In the coming years, it is possible, if not likely, that the ranks of female gamers will swell, but as events such as Gamergate have illustrated, not everyone is on board.

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