EMI: A Random Rant Bonus Rant

The War Within The Wires
By: Ben Whatsisname

I remember video games and adventures from the old days - I remember when Maniac Mansion was the newest thing to hit the shelf, and I remember the pre-graphic days spent mapping out a maze of 'twisty tunnels, all alike'. We didn't have fan communities back in those days. Hell, you had to be a 'rich kid' to connect to Q-link through a 300 baud modem to be able to chat with other players. Cycle forward a few years to the dawn of the BBS era. Gamers could finally get together and (for the most part) get along. Sure, you had trolls and flamers, but these were rare on the gaming boards, and life was pretty peaceful.

Time marches on to the birth of the Internet as a tool for "everyone" to be able to chat, post messages, trade savegames, and - yes - make fan pages. It was no longer a long-distance call to visit a LucasFilm Games-oriented BBS. Life was good. Search engines were still in the larval stage, so fan pages abounded - oblivious to each other unless contact was made through chat or a message board, but they thrived on the same playing field. Driving forward to the internet of yesterday, we see Minmojo as a community of nice friendly pages that link to those not hosted, and a few others like TLDB , Scummbar, etc. exist outside of, but in co-operation with Mixnmojo. The games are good, all the pages are good. Life is good.

But, ladies and gentlemen, our moods have turned in the new millinium. :( I see site wars between the Mixnmojo community and the Just Adventure + community. I see an AKick and Ban list combo in #monkey-island that tests the very limits of how big these lists can get. I see friends turning against one another, I see whole ranges of channels that are built as a new "colony" away from the "strict rules" and "bullsh-t politics" of #monkey-island where we used to see game-specific channels (like #grimfandango, #samnmax, #kickstand, etc) pop up after the release of certain games. I see perfectly peaceful sites getting flamed all because they chose not to follow the masses and put a game that they were disappointed in up on a shrine. I tell you honestly, if I collected beautiful sports cars and someone tried to sell me a Volkswagen that had flames painted down the sides, I certainly wouldn't buy it because it's not what I would define as a "sports car". Yet you ritious people feel that just becase that Volkswagen (game) looks slick, I should not be allowed to do what I want to do and should be forced to put it in my collection after all.

That is not right, nor is it fair. People ask me why the Kickstand is taking so long to update. The answer is that it is, for me, a labor of love - not just something you "throw together". If I get something that I feel does not make full throttle or my webpage look more appealing, I WILL NOT use it. If I decide to do a Quake III Arena total conversion with Full Throttle models and settings and promote this "Action game" segment, I WILL do so, no matter if you gripe that it is "not adventure". I applaud ANY webmaster... Matt, Randy, Skyfox, Spaff, etc that feels the same. I love that in this Quake & Myst-saturated environment that the adventure community still exists and still grows. So does the company that makes these games for us to play. If we spend more time tearing each other down and less time drawing more and more Quake / Myst fans into the world of adventure, then it will reflect in the sales (yes - you contribute by "word of mouth"), and companies will also look at the web and see nothing but flooded "bitch boards" and dead game shrines and think to themselves "Screw it... The adventure genre is dead... Let's go make Tomb Raider 9..."

I know this rant seems "jumbled", but there is a point in there. Yes, people get kick-banned from IRC channels... This is a fact of life. Usually, though, it is never a random "kill" or due to an op not getting laid the night before, but based soley on the banned person's actions. Friend or no frien, you all need to realise the the net (message boards and/or IRC) is as real as anything else in this world. You are interecting with real people with real emotions/feelings, and real thoughts here... If you are quick to fight because your friend got kicked, go look this friend up in real life, go to the roughest bar in town, stand beside your friend and have them insult the meanest m-f in the place. Back your friend up and watch with glee as you both get your asses whipped. Face it folks - friendship is good, but sometimes even rats have the sense to abandon a sinking ship.

Quit all the fighting. Let's have peace, or otherwise we are all just gonna be back with either dead pages or Geocities/Xoom accounts, nursing along a lonely webpage and advertizing that page in one of 10,000,000 identicle 1-occupant channels in IRC.

In other word, in fact my old kindergarden teacher's words, "Grow up, act your age and play nice."

Thank you for listening and at least thinking about my plea.

Ben Whatsisname
Webmaster of The Kickstand

(It's tough being the only Full Throttle page in a sea of Monkey Island guys can at least help each other by sharing content)

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