Down and Out in a Schleswig Sanatorium, Mork Borg adventure review

By Rugose Kohn
Self Published
OSR/Mork Borg
Level 1?

The Schleswig Sanatorium; home to members of the criminally insane, the disturbed, and the wretched of Schleswig. King Fathmu is fond of stocking its beds with rivals, family members, and rival family members. A place of utter despair, anyone unlucky enough to find themselves a guest, the gods have certainly deserted them. The outside is unassuming enough. A three story brick building. Leaded windows with ornate wrought iron bars. A stout solid-wood door. The inside is another matter entirely. Recently the staff has all been murdered by a patient gone rogue. That suits the King’s ends well enough, so no one has bothered to check on things recently.  That brings us to you. What exactly ARE you doing here? 11 pages of mayhem to help you figure it all out…

This fourteen page adventure is for Mork Borg. That’s all you really need to know. 

Well, I didn’t shoot a man in Reno just to see him die, but I did buy this when I saw it pop in my feed … and that it was for Mork Borg. “What a train wreck this will be!” I thought. I was not disappointed. Mork Borg. Mork Borg is that neighbor you have in your lower middle class neighborhood, the one that is a working artist. Nice guy, sits in their garage all day painting/using their pneumatic hammer to sculpt stone statues out of giant limestone blocks. Clearly gonna die of heart disease in a few years. But, hey, cool dude! It feels like DCC and Mork Borg are kissing cousins. Where DCC is very artist forward across most aspects of the game ecosystem, it still has a nice retirement fund socked away. Mork Borg feels like its artist led and it blew its retirement fund on hookers & blow … not for it, but for a community project. I love our art punk friends. I just wish to fuck they would follow through. And that is the problem here.

This is fourteen pages. fourteen digest pages, so they are small. Last page and first two are the cover nonsense stuff. That leaves us thirteen. One for the map. That’s twelve. Five pages for the monsters stats/appendix, about one per page. Three pages of hooks and random tables. That leave us three for the actual adventure. About eleven rooms. So we aee, already, that the content to bullshit ratio is skewed. Yes, digital pages are free and so it should mean that you can pump out as many appendix pages as you want. In theory. In practice, a low adventure to bullshit ratio means the content is generally lacking. 

We get a point crawl map here for the hospital. Each room, laid out in effective bullet point manner, generally has a few patients in it as well as a gruesomely killed staff member. That’s about it. One room has a washing machine monster. Another has a dude trying to sacrifice a small child, that might open a portal to the land of the dead. Oh, and the records room has d3 scrolls in it. You can now run the adventure because that’s all there is.

It’s using random tables to generate dormitory rooms and the patients. What they are doing and how crazy they are. This is, I think, a bad use of tables. “Tables are retro man! They are cool!” Yes, both are true, and tables can be put to good use. But, not for generating static content. Just create the damn rooms and stick them in. There’s no reason here for the rooms and patients to be random other than because the designer thought a table would be cool. It’s not. It’s lame when they are used like this.

The hooks are the usual nonsense. You woke up here. You are hired to go find someone. You heard there is treasure in the basement. Nothing of consequence, no specificity to hang your hat on.

The gruesomeness here is the selling point. “Edgy, man!” Dude with a table leg stuck through his head. Dead orderlies with their intestines intertwined. Patient hacking a dead orderly in to mincemeat long after they are dead. The specificity is good here even if it is tropy.

The main issue is … so what? The adventure doesn’t really have a purpose. “Go find treasure” or “Get my kid/your friend/whoever out” Meh. You walk in to a room, see crazy people, not the person you are looking for, and go to the next room. Nothing really interesting happens … aside from the crazy people interactions. And they don’t really have a purpose behind them. Not a part of the whole, so to speak, and so they are trivialities. I guess you’re meant to stumble on the Land of the Dead thing and do something about it. Yawn. Ok. I guess so. Why, again? It just feels empty. There’s nothing in it for the party, either in terms of loot or … development? It’s just some task to mindlessly perform. 

Someone had an idea. They write up a bunch of content around a washing machine monster and the land of the dead stuff in an insane asylum. But it never went beyond that initial concept. It was never fleshed out in a whole idea, put together, in a meaningful way. Oh, the adventure is coherent, all right. Most art punk stuff is. But it doesn’t FIT. It’s like the last step, the context for the players, if never completed. 

This is $3 at DriveThru. The preview is three pages. You get to see the map (note the stairs up/down label paradox), the intro, and the edgy “what are the patients doing” table. A page of encounters would have been nice also.

Finally, a note about hypocrisy. We are all hypocrites. You cannot survive in the world without being one. Our designer notes “While I support making this your own at the table, don’t use this content for racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, or discriminatory games of any kind. I ain’t down with that.” Then, proceeding to make an adventure that leverages caricatures of mental illness? Touché sir! I salute you! Still, better than that adventure with the halfling plantation owners and the “indentured servants.”

Speaking of hypocrites, I’m now attending several old man meetups, in a socially distanced manner of course. Full of old white dudes, just like me! My new t-short came in today, that I’m wearing to all of our future “JACKED UP TRUCCCKKKSSS!!” and HAMM meetups:

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113 Responses to Down and Out in a Schleswig Sanatorium, Mork Borg adventure review

  1. Owen Edwards says:

    how long is that t-shirt Bryce, my word

    • Bryce Lynch says:

      As long as the list of crimes the bourgeois have committed against the proletariat?
      *ta da*! I’m here all week folks. Try the veal. Tip your server.

      • Melan says:

        You might be surprised to learn, but there is no “veal” in the socialist utopia.

        This is how it goes. Even in the best of times, there is no veal. Even when there are no food shortages (like in multiple neighbouring countries, where there is no meat at all), there is no veal. Cows are being produced. Cows are first used for milk, and if they are all old, worn out and chewy, they get turned into beef. The plan is fulfilled, the people get their meat. There is no good beef on the market, only old worn-out cow. Sometimes, veal is reared, but it is immediately exported for hard currency. Veal is, of course, found on restaurant menus. Veal ragout, veal stew, veal in some kind of sauce with boiled potatoes. It is not veal, but the same kind of chewy cow as always, done “veal style”. If you mention this to the waiter, he will laugh and come up with a glib explanation, usually “I did not ask the esteemed animal about her age, har har har.”, or “We got it in the form of meat, not the whole veal, hyuck hyuck.” You hate him, but there are not many restaurants around, and all of them are just as bad, because they are all cooking from the same state-approved “official cookbook” which specifies what can be put into which dish, and in what proportions. You take the “veal”. It arrives late, half cold. The waiter smiles, and smirks “Bon appetit!” The wine has an acrid chemical taste, and smells faintly of petrol, because the wine quotas have to be met, and the Soviet market will buy anything. The bread, from the bread factory, is shit. The peas (if any) come from a recently opened tin, and till taste metallic.

        Welcome to socialism. Enjoy your stay, you will probably be here for what seems like forever.

        Coming soon to a country near you, except with more bug-based protein, and more pronouns. Yum yum yum!

        • Anonymous says:

          What is your personnel history with this?

          I am interested because I suspect you might have a different perspective than a Berkley student who wears Che T-Shirts?

          • Anonymous says:

            Uh … hungary?

          • Gnarley Bones says:

            As an aside, my wife came here as a refugee from the former Soviet Union. She was at a panel at Boston College, about the International Criminal Court, I believe. As we made our way to the panel, it was apparently Student Group Registration Day, and all the groups had tables and sign-ups.

            And there he was, an earnest, neck-bearded young gent, manning the Students For Communism table.

            Even though we were running late, my wife made a bee-line for his table and set him straight. 😉

        • Jake Parker says:

          Thank you for sharing your perspective from the inside, Gabor.

        • Anonymous says:

          But that wasn’t REAL socialism

          • Melan says:

            That’s correct; it was called REFORM socialism, which meant small market reforms to supply the populace with food and consumer goods. This was considered a major deviation from proper stand-in-line-for-bread Marxism-Leninism by the much more orthodox systems of the GDR and Czechslovakia, but tolerated to an extent. Meat was available in the stores without queuing, but veal, or real chocolate, or good coffee, or good wine, or good tobacco, or other good things in life: those were not on the menu.

            I wouldn’t call it a life of suffering, and I have no personal story of persecution or even hardship – the 50s were long over, people would say “at least it is not like in Poland”, and besides, I was a kid. It was just crappy with no end in sight, until it was suddenly over and it turned out the aftermath would be no bed of roses either.

            But to bring it back to RPGs, consider this example. In the late 1980s, the main book publisher responsible for childrens’ books and science fiction flat out rejected the idea of publishing AD&D or another similar game in Hungary, citing a lack of interest and an insufficient audience.* So here you are: in socialism, there are no RPGs either (except the tank-busting kind). Wear those Che shirts accordingly.
            * To consider what this “lack of interest” meant, it has to be noted that the flagship SF magazine, from the same publisher, sold in ridiculously high numbers approaching or surpassing major US magazines. SF was king and the appetite in fandom was enormous; if Traveller or Star Wars had been published at that time, it would have been bigger than Jesus. It is just that somebody said “no”, and there was no alternative to pick from.

        • Anonymous says:

          WTF do pronouns have to do with any of this? I get your perspective on socialism, whatever, but then a little bigotry to wrap it up? Pretty disappointed in you, you do some awesome stuff.

        • Anonymous says:

          That’s not echoing what ALL of the multi-billion-dollar international corporations is blaring 24/7/365 on ALL media outlets and their employees, the US government, would say, so you’re wrong.

        • Anonymous says:

          Whaaa Whaa! Look, a right-wing child or grandchild of people who lived under the yoke of the Russian Empire wants to blame socialism for all of society’s ills and then jumps to transphobia. Eastern European meat production dropped after 1992 without subsidy, per the USDA.

          • Melan says:

            Looks like the catgirl lmaoist squad has found the comments. Well, here is a tip for free: Marxism, like soy, will never make you anything but more miserable. Eat steak, not (hum)bug, commies!

          • It is really terribly rude of Melan for denying this poor college girl’s rote-learned indoctrination by mere virtue of having grown up under a socialist regime and experiencing its practical implementation firsthand.

          • Anonymous says:

            They just don’t get it. Melan and Prince, if you think that to be anti-communist you need to be racist and transphobic then you are retarded.

            Now go feel good about yourself because you know a lot about D&D. Retards.

          • Anonymous says:

            Lawl still salty.

            Ableism in the last line.

        • Anonymous says:

          Another one to add to the “OSR creators who turn out to be right wing assholes” file. What is it with white guys that feel like they have to show their shit politics to everybody.

        • markuscz says:

          What has suddenly happened to this thread? Would somebody care to explain? It is Americans grossly overreacting to stuff that makes no sense for us outsiders? I honestly don’t see where the accusations of right wing bigotry are coming from. Is it bad to criticize communism nowadays in that part of the world?

          Anyway, cheers from former Czechoslovakia, Melan. I only vaguely remember the fall of the Iron curtain but your post brought back PTSD memories of school canteens. It wasn’t much better in the 90s either.

          • Alex says:

            I’m English. Melan has the right to his opinions. I don’t disagree with his right to express them.

            However what he said is absolutely disgusting, and I have lost all respect for him. I won’t be reading his blog or buying any more of his books.

            As the poster above says, just another author to throw on the “turns out to be a right-wing dickhead” pile.

          • markuscz says:

            You probably shouldn’t read The Prince of Nothing either

          • Anonymous says:

            Sad violin “bye bye” song, intensifies…

          • Anonymous says:

            @markuscz Believe it or not, all the rage comes from this part “…and more pronouns” . Yeah, people reactions are not absurdly disproportional at all…Unless they really hate to be called soy boys… or boys, for the matter.

          • Anonymous says:

            Your respect is worthless. Leave this hobby. We don’t want you.

          • Melan says:

            Cheers, markuscz! 😀 Those canteens, yeah, those are vivid memories. And as for the 90s, I can only quote Michnik: “The worst thing in communism is what follows afterwards.” Certainly, I did not become a big fan of the neo-liberal utopian experiment either, nor other grand experiments conducted on a browbeaten society. 1989, as a citizen’s revolution for normality, had a point that was quickly forgotten, but should perhaps be remembered more.

            For anyone who does not wish to read, buy, or comment on my stuff because of my disagreeable politics: it is a free world, and your choice. You can just walk away. You know, unlike communism.

            But, back to Hitler’s (apparently) favourite RPG: I have pledged to one of the better looking Börk Börk Zinequest campaigns, and a review will be written when I receive it.

          • Alex says:

            @Anonymous “Believe it or not, all the rage comes from this part”

            Exactly. It’s the context that matters. Pick a -phobia or an -ism, one that you strongly disagree with. Then imagine at the time of a civil rights movement, someone dismissing an important aspect of it as wishy-washy nonsense.

            It’s also utterly bizarre to slip it into his post like that. I hate caramel.

    • Anonymous says:

      And is that a 70′ Challenger he’s driving?

  2. Evard's Small Tentacle says:

    So…why can’t all these publishers addicted to tables (increasingly “trendy” and non sensical), simply put them as an add on in Excel with a macro to auto generate? Makes the life of your audience and your product value much greater.

    As for Mork Borg- just drivel of a different kind.

  3. Do yourself a favor and review Cha’alt: Fuchsia Malaise! Also, what about the proletariat’s crimes against the bourgeoisie? I’m mostly talking about the smell… oh, and the mass executions.

  4. Gus L. says:

    **First-effort low functionality 3rd party adventures are sort of a sign your rule set has made it!**
    Mork Borg stuff seems rather inconsistent, especially 3rd party stuff, but then it’s a system and community young and full of glee – with plenty of folk fresh from the Forgotten Realms. I fully expect a few stylists will start putting out better 3rd party Mork Borg content regularly if it remains popular.

    Of course the other side of the issue is something common to a lot of classic inspired ultralights — a pretty serious lack of rules for exploration: turnkeeping, exhaustion, risk and all sorts of things go into making a functional dungeon crawl and other then encumbrance Mork Borg doesn’t really include much mechanical support. Who can know what the future holds – that the real grimdark…

  5. Anonymous says:

    Great point about hypocrisy. We are drowning in it these days.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Why is everyone bashing Mörk Borg now? I don’t get it

  7. Deep One says:

    Well, the author is right in that there *is* a forensic psychiatry in the small city of Schleswig, ~30 km from where I live. 😀

  8. Ynas Midgard says:

    Well, some of us were really puzzled by the extensive praise it got in the first place.

    I don’t think it’s a bad game, and it sure is pretty, but I always thought we old-school folks valued substance over style, and we already had more than enough rules-light games anyway (Microlite, The Black Hack, Into the Odd, Searchers of the Unknown, just to name a few).

    Plus, it’s technically not Mörk Borg that’s being critiqued but the host of third party products.

  9. nerrrval says:

    Has there ever been a good D&D adventure set in a sanatorium? They’re up there with circus adventures as things I won’t even bother looking at.

    On a different note, Bryce, have you ever seen the adventure in the Mörk Borg rulebook? Not to give anything away, but it was definitely written with usability at the table in mind.

  10. Did this one also take the trouble to denounce Hitler? I refuse to buy anything unless it explicitly denounces Hitler. You can’t be too careful these days.

    • Anonymous says:

      Amazing though how no one seems to denounce Stalin huh? He was just as bad if not worse. So many people are up in arms about fascism (as they should be) but where’s the outrage for communism? Scary if you ask me.

      • Gnarley Bones says:

        Partially because of a blithe belief that Communism is dead, whereas Fascism is not (yet).

        Also because we (the collective We) Americans are just awful at history and keep thinking the terms are synonymous and not two horrible separate things at the polar opposite ends of the spectrum. Two Godawful tastes that taste Godawful apart.

      • Robert, OSR Heretic says:

        @Gnarley Bones, it gets even more confusing depending on who you talk to. A number of people on the Right use a different view of the political spectrum, one that puts Fascism and Communism in the same bucket. This is particularly true for Objectivists. In their terms, Left = Statist control and Right = freedom and less government.

        I suppose the Right/Left spectrum is like the D&D alignment system. Kind of useless because no one can agree on what it actually should be.

        • Gnarley Bones says:

          Oh, I agree they’re confused, but they don’t get to rewrite *defined terms* simply because they can’t be bothered to learn the actual definitions. And, in my experience, those who can actually express why they believe two absolutely polar opposite belief systems are synonymous are Very Rare to Unique. Most never get past the blithe surface level of “the name of the party was the National Socialists, learn English!” and you wish you had a third eye to roll. I have found, however, that when I ask, “In Niemoller’s poem, when he says, ‘First they came for the Socialists,’ who do you think ‘they’ are?”, the most Common type slink away. I’m a cock-eyed optimist and I like to think that, for just a moment at least, they realized that there is more to the subject than surface-level trolling.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for posting this t-shirt Bryce. This comments are becoming more entertaining than this game will ever be. Here comes the cavalry!!!

  12. Anonymous says:

    This made me stop working on my Mork Borg adventure :[

  13. Anonymous says:

    I love how I was like Melan please share. You are not from the west. And woke westerners freaked out. Dude F cancel culture. Melan thank you. Eye for an eye and everyone is blind. Cast the first stone if your religious whatever works

  14. Bryce Lynch says:

    I wonder if it really matters if it’s Blackwater or the state police who are beating you, while you are on the picket line?

    There is a different language being used. As the US edges towards a Libertarian Utopia, like Texas power deregulation, Socialism and Marxism get equated with things like labor laws, environmental standards, and realistic healthcare bills.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well, some people equate socialism and marxism with deplatforming without appeal, allowance of protests that support certain causes while condemning protests that support other causes, a culture in which the government and the MSM are beyond question despite flip-flopping by experts, and non-sensical procedures enacted by baby boomers for baby boomers that harm the rest of the populace.

    • Robert, OSR Heretic says:

      Obama was declared to be a ‘socialist’ by those who wanted to stop his legislative agenda. While that helped them in the short term, it also had the nasty side effect of destigmatizing the term. If the social policies of the UK and France are indistinguishable from the socialism of the USSR and Cuba, then why is socialism such a bad thing? And through this Marx is rehabilitated in the mainstream.

      The same thing, alas, happened with the term Fascism. Just look at Trump.

      • osvelt says:

        Let me put this in a way you can understand, you unfresh bonobo. Communism is when the government gives people healthcare. And the more healthcare the government gives, the more communister it is. My plan is to steal the worlds money and use this money to give every man, woman and child in the world healthcare and therefore force them to adopt communism! I will ensure that the government takes every toothbrush, every iphone and every stock market and BURNS THEM along with every starving ukranian. Once the soviet union stands supreme as leader of the worlds nations and the top provider of healthcare, I will rename the earth to venezuala and inflict our currency until the end of time! I will destroy the small business owners and mom-and-pop landlords! We will seize the missiles and I will rain nuclear hellfire on a NEW RED WORLD!

    • Reason says:

      Things which have utterly destroyed Australia, New Zealand, Scandinavia & Western Europe. Oh and probably Canada… haven’t they? Or are they the stablest, free-est most prosperous nations right now? Nah, probably socialist hellholes.

      • Anonymous says:

        Canada is collapsing and wants vaccine passports
        Australians got arrested for eating in cars
        In Britain you can be jailed for tweeting about Muslim terrorism

        • Gnarley Bones says:

          You probably think there are Muslim “no go” areas in England, don’t you?

        • Reason says:

          Canada is collapsing? Oh really?
          Seems more stable than it’s neighbours right now. It’s kind of been collapse free for decades. But it’s about to all come tumbling down? Betcha it doesn’t!

          I’m living in Australia actually. Haven’t been arrested for eating in or out of my car so far. But yeah we did a lockdown & also didn’t have 500k people die. I guess life vs economy metric is different in different places. And In Oz, the gov helps the people out to ensure they aren’t living in poverty if we need to lockdown.

    • Gnarley Bones says:

      Yes, yes.

      But only because the majority of Americans have no idea what those defined term mean, but they sound scary. Remember that a poll once found a frightening of respondents in favor of bombing Agrabah and in favor of a ban on teaching (sigh) Arabic Numerals in schools.

      • Osvelt says:

        Socialism is when the government does stuff and if it does enough stuff, then it is communism. Everything that is vaguely different from megacorp ran technofeudalism is radical leftism, therefore the new deal is socialism and social democracy is communism. The vote is a lie, the ballot has failed, it’s time for the bullet! We will do protracted people’s war so that our children may get a medicare expansion and 12 an hour minimum wage!

  15. Anonymous says:

    P O L I T I C S

  16. Evard's Small Tentacle says:

    Discourse without nuance and listening is just diatribe, same with broad generalizations that serve no purpose other than proving that “i am right.” Work on your egos and insecurities; clearly very fragile and needs lots and lots of work. Looking inwards could potentially be of value?

    • samurguybri says:

      I agree. We spend a lot of time on our identity project. It’s very precious to us. It’s so fragile, so we defend it like rabid dogs or hurt kids. How about we strip away some of our conditioning, throw off some blinders and look at the 90% we have in common? Maybe 91% as RPG players? Give each other some respect to explain their ideas. Work to stop actions in an arena that will effect change, not just to hurt or strengthen your ego by being “right” on the internet.
      Practicing mindfulness and repeatedly noticing the impermanent nature of your thoughts can really help loosen the hold of you “I” tyrant

  17. The problem with the anonymous commenter/Alex, who cannot possibly be Gus, is that his indoctrination has damaged his ability to read comprehensively at a high school level. Melan seems to refer to the undeniable parallels between the current woke movement and socialist/marxism (the actual kind), which is backed up all the way to the percentage of marxist professors in the humanities, fundamental assumptions about human beings, to the strategies, to the dogma (its just that the class struggle has become an identity struggle), to the newspeak and the doublethink. He is not casting any judgement on the merits of pronouns in and of themselves, but merely drawing that link. But this individual is so deeply indoctrinated, that any attack on the movement becomes an attack on the cause it purports to defend, whether accidentally or strategically. You see that with another popular civil rights movement all the time. If you cannot understand the distinction, you simply should not be having the argument to begin with.

    • Melan says:

      Pardon my French, but I actually do think those pronouns are retarded.*

      * Ableism! You have offended the Twitter community! Oh no!

      • Anonymous says:

        Can’t wait to see the OSR discord later today. It will be the “reeee” festival up there. They seem to love your work. The butthurt will be marvelous. Much respect. Don’t agree with the pronoun stuff you’re saying, but God bless you for saying It. Love your work. Still love your blog. I like your online persona too. Cheers!

        • Anonymous says:

          If you want to see good old REEEEing look up “Paimon Prowler Beware”. The admin of the OSR Discord regularly tricks and grooms people into erotic furry roleplay to the point of unsafety and lack of consent. He pretends to be japanese and the idol of a cult. According to him he has his own group of bodyguards who all happen to be Joh Travolta Greaser doubles.

      • Gnarley Bones says:

        Actually, Melan, that *is* an offensive term.

      • samurguybri says:

        I’m not so much of a Twitter person or feel the need to label someone as an abelist, but I do work with children at a primary (5-11) school. I find people use retarded in a cruel way and it’s not very descriptive of what we understand about brain development and the problems that impact it. I’m older (49) and have had to change my language to more accurately reflect the new understandings in the field. I’m now more able to understand of the nuances in children’s mental health and some of the brain science behind it. For accuracy and respect (since little kids are by nature sociopathic little monsters) I’ve stopped using retarded. Why not just call something fucking stupid, instead of using a word that adults and kids use to be cruel? Plus it’s simply too broad of a term to be used as anything but a pejorative that calls back to real people who deal with some really challenging stuff.

    • Anonymous says:

      Hey! Not all Annons are crazy! I speak for more than myself when I saw some are very nice folks with real life friends who verbally converse!

      I know what a concept, not trying to be a Japanese Internet Cafe lifer who cancels people online to feel better about themselves!

      • Anonymous says:

        The problem for me is that I’m trying to log in but I can’t. Bryce blog don’t let me, I don’t know why. So, Anon it is.

      • Since you are clearly not with the perfidious Alex and his alt-right cabal of Hitler-non-denouncers, I trust you implicitly and pledge eternal friendship. Together we will conquer the OSR and rid it of wrongthinkers.

    • Alex says:

      Then that’s a very…arbitrary parallel?

      Easiest solution is for Melan to clearly state what he actually believes. Hopefully it was a misunderstanding on my part and we can put all this whataboutery aside.

      • markuscz says:

        Why do you care about what he thinks? Why do you need to check the correctness of someone’s political opinions before you read their game stuff? Why does it even matter?

        This is the slippery slope that people are referring to. Requiring purity of thought. You’re either with us or against us. Nothing in between, no middle ground, you’re either a friend or an enemy.

        This is how unfreedom starts.

        • Alex says:

          Two reasons:

          I care because PrinceOfNothing pointed out that the bizarre comment about pronouns might have been some kind of analogy rather than an attempt to trivialize or make fun of an important rights issue. Transphobes use similar language so I really hope it was just a misunderstanding, and I would be grateful if Melan could clear that up.

          I care because _if_ someone has messed-up views, then I don’t want to support them, definitely not financially (as I have already). I also think it’s right to make other people aware of their views, so those people can make the same decision if they want.

          This has been around long before Twitter or cancel culture or whatever. Nazi Punks were a thing, and “why can’t you just like their music?” is not something I could agree with.

          You’re free to support or not support anyone you want. You’re also free to inform or not inform people about others’ views. This is the middle ground you’re talking about. Nobody is impeding anyone’s freedom.

          • Anonymous says:

            ” I also think it’s right to make other people aware of their views, so those people can make the same decision if they want.”
            -So if he doesn’t like the same pronouns as you, you’ll start a little crusade against him? Wow, you need better hobbies dude.

          • I would observe that two disparaging comments were made about race, and you did not check them. Also, when I publicly denounced Hitler, you were silent.

          • Alex says:


            It’s hardly a crusade. I talk to people about OSR stuff. If Melan comes up I’ll just say “hey you might want to know that…” and link his comment. I don’t know what you’re imagining.


            He also used an ableist slur, not too pleased about that either (being self-aware/ironic doesn’t make it okay).

            Denouncing Hitler isn’t exactly a high bar. I too denounce Hitler, along with the things the author denounces in this adventure. Can Melan do the same?

          • PrinceofNothing says:

            You are at least willing to play this silly game by its own silly rules. You mentioned earlier that this was voluntary but why is cancel culture a problem to you? Is freedom more important then transphobia?

    • Anonymous says:

      oh sweet a schizo thread

    • Baschi says:

      Many humanities professors are Marxians, not Marxists.

      Marx provide valid tools of societal analysis (Marxian) you can use without attempting to build a Socialist Utopia (Marxist).

      Also there is no link between Marxism and pronoun crusades. Battling over pronouns and social justice is a way for the American left to actually avoid tackling the economic issues that are the root cause of social inequality and privilege. (This is the exact opposite of Marxism that postulates a reform of economic structure, with culture to naturally follow).

      In short, the link Melan sees is non-existent.

      • Euripides says:

        Baschi betrays an NPC-like inability to differentiate terms from the concepts they describe, and indulges in the reflexive ‘akshually’ that has become inseparable from the image of the american fedora-wearing midwit, although his claim w.r.t. the american left and pronouns is on point.

        The differences between Marxism and Postmodernism (vis a vis Materialism f.e.) are present but irrelevant when contrasted with the western civilization they seek to critique and replace. The drive, modus operandi, method and the core beliefs are identical, and the end result is the same. Smugly chanting ‘it isn’t this particular flavor of ice cream so it doesn’t count’ is not fooling anyone. It is still ice-cream. And you are still a homo.

        • Baschi says:

          I’m not American, being a homo is not an insult and if you equate Postmodernism to Marxism you are, sadly, retarded.

        • Baschi says:

          Plus, Marxism and Postmodernism are products of the western civilisation, not alternatives. It’s real sad how you midwit can’t understand shit outside of D&D

        • Euripides says:

          I’d be prissy and incoherent too if my outdated utopian philosophy had been hijacked by perverted billionaires but there you have it. I don’t know what to say. Sorry dude, put down the hammer and sickle, you are now about grooming and pronouns.

          Stating that something is a product of something else and therefore the same is a category error (f.e. you can argue the same about Fascism). Also if you want to demonstrate intellectual superiority you should probably not repeat verbatim whatever rhetorical flourishes I have chosen to inject for my own amusement to add a whiff of wit to your brutish mongoloid diatribes. Peasant.

          • Baschi says:

            Think anything you like about my politics


            How do you expect me to point out the terms you used inappropriately, showing deep ignorance, if not by pointing them out?
            You show once again how people like you don’t have ideas, only rhetoric.

          • Euripides says:

            A false statement, observe:

            1.I have dismantled your rebuttal of my initial statement dialectically, by pointing out you committed a category error, and only subsequently followed it up with rhetoric.

            2.The second requires super-midwit reasoning. Your entire point is predicated on what amounts to a grammatical slip up that only you care about. The statement, which is true, pertains to a target population which self-identifies as Marxist/communist. Literally no one cares if you cry ‘it’s not real Marxism reeeeeeee’ any more then anyone cares if Frankenstein is actually Frankenstein’s monster.

            3. You used retarded as an insult but by your own standards this is an ableist slur. If you do not uphold your own outdated tripe, how can you expect others to take it seriously (other then via newspeak, gulags, politburos, holodomors etc.etc.)?

          • Baschi says:

            For some reason I cannot reply directly to your last comment, sorry !

            1. You haven’t dismantled any of my points. You expressed disagreement in a flowery way but did not directly disproved anything.

            2. If with this point you are referring to the Marxist/Marxian definitions, then it’s important for a large sector of the historical / sociological research sector (of every political color). You might have a different cultural background and not be aware of it.

            3. You called me a homo without knowing anything about me, I inferred that you might be slow of mind based on your stance about the cultural topics discussed above.

            4. I’m being honest saying this: I quite like you, I am fond of argumentative people regardless of their ideals, I’m keeping this shitshow up for fun, not out of spite

          • Baschi says:

            In case someone missed them, the initial points were:

            – Humanity faculties are full of Marxian, not Marxists
            – pronoun crusades (and the mainstream American left) are completely unrelated from Marxism.

          • Euripides says:

            Do you have some sort of Marxist(ian?) breadline server where we can hash this out or whatever? I like and miss trial-by-comment section but I don’t want to offend our host.

            1. Yes. And I pointed out the difference is immaterial in this context. I can see a line where we argue that by saying Marxist he could refer to ‘Cultural Marxist’ which may or may not be a subsection. The one ideology most certainly comes from the other and uses many of the same terms, models, assumptions etc. etc. Its probably easier if you just point out how it is different and we go from there.

            2. We are making progress. You just pointed out that the importance is contextual and important for the purposes of sociological research. I am saying that in the context of this conversation, which is not taking place in an academic research field, the distinction is meaningless.

            3. Intelligence is hardly correlated with the use of slurs. If I wanted to be extremely pedantic I would point to some psychological research paper that actually correlated swearing with intelligence but let’s not drag down the spirit of this slapfight. Your pretty verbal pirouette notwithstanding; my attack is predicated on pointing out that you clearly used ‘retard’ as a perjorative term, which is incongruent with your implied beliefs, whereas I used the slur ‘homo’, which is (more or less) congruent with my beliefs.

            4. Gah you ruined it by humanizing yourself.

            I think the distinction between Marxian and Marxist in college professors is peripheral. Lets stick to your initial point: Marxism and pronoun crusades have no link.

  18. Makes me wonder if Mork Borg is trying to claw its way into the slot once totally owned by LotFP. I like both, so I’m not complaining, just curious to see the crossover.

  19. Anonymous says:

    God you white middle aged men with your bullshit political takes and debate 101 argument techniques are the fucking WORST.

    • Anonymous says:

      Cry me a river, kid.

      • osvelt says:

        old conservatives are the weak men who have created hard times. Refusing the concept of collective sacrifice, worship of individualism, glorification of greed and denial of communal responsibilities, a refusal to sacrifice for the future as evidenced by a refusal to fund infrastructure because it would require taxes in the present, etc. These are the traits of weak and decadent people who squandered a period of unprecedented prosperity for their own gain.

        • The tragedy of your awareness is that it will not enable you to help others, nor prevent events from unfolding. Better to rail at module cobblers about the use of pronouns and congratulate oneself on social media, or to rail at the railers. One may feel contempt for the Bugmen, but most assuredly one will Consume Product and Get Excited for New Product, alongside them.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not as bad as the worthless shit-head thirty-somethings with their vapid-sheep politics who whine about everything.

  20. osvelt says:

    Modern politics are consumer politics. You watch fox news to consume right wing media, pay the patreon to access to special political media to consume, put the hammer and sickle in your twitter profile to signal your communist consumer identity. We fight over identities defined by consumption. Some people hate the trump show while others love it so we fight over what’s on the television. The sjw’s are a bigger threat than the skyrocketing homelessness, rising food prices or your job becoming a gigafied cyberpunk nightmare because sjw’s gain power over the media you consume.
    Marching and making speeches is the main form of liberal politics because repeating the march ritual buys the experience of being an activist. Neoliberal parenting is why the young gravitate to liberal politics. Every experience must be training or create growth. The march trains them to be the kind of person who would “fight the power”.
    The old were the tv generation. The foundational myth of qanon, the executions of ones enemies, takes place on television. It’s not minorities they hate so much as calling their media problematic.
    It’s natural that gaming is in the culture war. A nerd consumes nerd branded media and experiences, so we struggle over the media and experiences offered in nerd culture.
    None of this will change the trajectory of society. The rate of profit’s been falling since the 70’s. Globalization has finished opening up every market and now there isn’t ever increasing commodity supply to offset inflationary monetary policy or the new markets to grow the size of the global market. Stagflation is coming back. Enjoy things while you can.

    • osvelt says:

      Why does matter if Melan is a bigot or something? Because you consume osr media and form a parasocial relationship with the creators of your media consumption. It’s a betrayal of your relationship for Melan to offend you and the customer is always right.
      Queer liberation once defied categories but in the 2000’s, sexualities became defined into increasingly more exact categories. The logic of the market demands market segmentation. Just as the creation of goth out of punk turns one market into two, 5 genders becomes 20. Something cannot be a commodity if it cannot be measured and therefore every quality of life must become quantified. Markets don’t operate on the basis of things but on the measurements of those things.
      Death to the osr! Death to the Nerd! The consumers desires makes them a slave of the content creator!

    • Bryce Lynch says:

      Ah ha! An interesting commentary!
      Megacorps? Check!
      Cynicism? Check!
      Globalization shrinking, consumption stagnation? Check!

      Peter Zeihan reads my reviews and plays D&D!
      Peter Zeihan reads my reviews and plays D&D!

  21. Edgewise says:

    Boy, I’m glad I circled back to these comments days later. So many intelligent and original takes…I’ve learned so much. In the future, I will allow comment threads to properly ferment before consumption, like a good beer or a rancid sliver of head cheese.

    It’s really all Bryce’s fault, triggering people with his t-shirt at the top. Of course, if you are are reading this comment, I am not referring to you. You were not triggered. It was the other guy.

  22. Johnny Came Lately says:

    I can’t resist but chip in with a joke on communism by people who, living in the middle of it, were contemptibly blind to its virtues:

    – What’s communism?
    – Well it’s the longest winding road leading from capitalism to capitalism.

  23. HellORC says:

    And yet, after all the ruckus, a few things stand as undeniably true.

    Melan is the author of one of the greatest dungeon modules of all time. (That doesn’t mean he is right in everything he says or writes)

    People have a right to express their ideas freely. (Freely meaning that they have the right to express them EVEN IF YOU DON’T AGREE )

    This whole “Pronous” fashion is just plain stupid.

  24. samurguybri says:

    Akshually, it’s a trilby, not a fedora.
    I couldn’t resist.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Fedora so hot rn

    Selinux only grows stronger

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