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"Women and Wargaming" Topic

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1,351 hits since 27 Sep 2017
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Personal logo D6 Junkie Supporting Member of TMP27 Sep 2017 12:04 p.m. PST

This guys brings up an interesting point.
My wife sent the link to me, she's seen it first hand.

Wolverine27 Sep 2017 12:19 p.m. PST

I'm confused. If the female player in the story was Samantha (Sam), then who is Jennifer?

dapeters27 Sep 2017 1:11 p.m. PST

" Given the disproportionate amount of socially-challenged young men at the store" It not just young men, just look at recent events here on TMP.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP27 Sep 2017 2:09 p.m. PST

"What do think it would take to get more women into gaming?" the person asked.

Lol. It's funny how these days everything is treated as though it needs fixing when the numbers in a hobby, sport, activity or club don't favor the female gender. Why don't we say that the groups with a disproportionately high number of women in them need to be balanced out or that something needs to be done to bring more men into them?

And if, on the days that we go out to game or visit the game store, our wives or girlfriends happen to go and have a night with their regular group doing whatever it is they always like to do, does that make them socially challenged too? Because I'd pay good money to see someone here try and call them that! :)

The answer is insanely simple, even there is a society with absolute freedoms, people will not always end up choosing interests in equal gender proportions. It doesn't mean that there is a problem or that something should be done to change the make up.

Someone is doing a number on us if we suddenly start thinking that way. Their constant messaging is working on you.


brucka27 Sep 2017 2:30 p.m. PST

Sad story.But in answer to above, the issue seemed to be the incessant 'mansplaining' or kibbitzing where none was requested, warranted nor well received. Women probably can speak better to this phenomenon.

Chuckaroobob27 Sep 2017 2:38 p.m. PST

A few wives/girlfriends showed up on Monday game nights, once they realized we were not robbing banks or watching porn they quickly lost interest in the gatherings.

Personal logo jeffreyw3 Supporting Member of TMP27 Sep 2017 2:51 p.m. PST

The issue is nothing to do with quotas or that we've all been brainwashed into political correctness--it has to do with different ages and sexes bringing different experiences and viewpoints to the gaming table. Many people view that as a plus--hence the discussion.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP27 Sep 2017 2:54 p.m. PST


Lol. Maybe I'm thinking less about what we want and more about where they'll have the most fun?

Or maybe those of us with wives or girlfriends already get lots of those fresh viewpoints and experiences from them at home? I don't know about the rest, but I do occasionally brainstorm with mine about game ideas and terrain projects. :)

PS. Pardon me but the question they posed was about numbers. Good try though.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP27 Sep 2017 4:39 p.m. PST

Hmm. Getting back to the link, no one ever bombards newbie males with unsolicited advice in that group?

Getting to the broader question. You know, I know women who quilt, sew, are part Beauty and the Beast fandom, and who write traditional detective fiction--all activities which attract disproportionately female participants. NOT ONCE has any woman of my acquaintance ever asked me "how can we get more males into the group?" But somehow it's a perennial on TMP--less common than complaints about new editions, but more often than scale creep--about up there with Host bashing.

Does it ever occur to you that women DO participate and DO bring a different perspective? They concern themselves with narrative and individual personalities, sometimes with cooperative activities, and less with combat. It's called roll-playing. By the time you've opted for an interest in technology, tactics and winning battles, you've already selected a disproportionately male hobby--and you'll notice the big pushes to bring in more females always have a plan to de-emphasize fighting tabletop battles.

If you want a hobby with more women in it, guys--learn to knit.

Personal logo StoneMtnMinis Supporting Member of TMP27 Sep 2017 6:22 p.m. PST

It is because most gamers desperately want to meet women. grin

Hafen von Schlockenberg Inactive Member27 Sep 2017 6:28 p.m. PST

Is "roll-playing" another name for bowling?

Women do that too.

Or does it refer to bun fights,a la the Drones Club?

Bun fights. Hmm. . .no,never mind.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP28 Sep 2017 4:06 a.m. PST

Ouch. Bun fight, Hafen. From the old "Phil and Dixie."

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP28 Sep 2017 5:44 a.m. PST

Simple "Different views" is too narrow a standard. The goal ought to be on improving the experience for all who play.

How will you know? Depends very much on the individual brought in, as well as the dynamic that they are brought into.

This is not a sexist claim, There are many men who dont bring in anything of value either. I just think it's a mistake to crusade here along the the lines of sex. That is why it is PC, as it generalizes about whole swathes of people in unconstructive ways and glosses over preferred outcomes in favor of blind inputs.

Ottoathome Inactive Member28 Sep 2017 7:06 a.m. PST

DAMN YOU!!! Stone mountain miniatures!!!!! You always get to the list before me!!!!

You are correct. The whole thing is the concatenation of socially dysfunctional males who desperately want women in the hobby so they can get dates. It's pure old sex. The problem is that the Socially dysfunctional males cannot interact with other people without miniatures, rules, dice and suppressed combat and murder. That's their language, their culture, their common coin.

If you doubt. Take a look at your average gamer. Hugely fat! Balding, haven't had a shower in days, with a beard of 11 hairs in 16 rows which they think gives their putty mugs character. they are dressed in whatever they picked out of the clothes hamper that doesn't small awful, and in shorts. Dressing in shorts advertises you're only a little boy, and wearing a T shirt which says the quote from Conan is the epitome of human aspirastions (hearing the lamnentation of their women…) Indeed it is oily obsequeousness of most gamers that is a turn off to women.

All of this whining about women I simply trying to get them to stay around, but the object is the same. The male gamers want sex, and the women know it.

Now… if you REALLY want to know about this, ask Cleo Liebl who over a period of years ran games for women at the conventions (and they were always full) and various other iterations. Some games had only women, some had women and men intermixed on the same sides, some had women and men in the same game but on opposite sides.

I saw them all, observed them, but did not play. The semiotics and body language was astounding. In the last, men against women, there was blood on the walls.

Winston Smith Supporting Member of TMP28 Sep 2017 9:31 a.m. PST

Take a look at your average gamer. Hugely fat! Balding, haven't had a shower in days, with a beard of 11 hairs in 16 rows which they think gives their putty mugs character. they are dressed in whatever they picked out of the clothes hamper that doesn't small awful, and in shorts.

Speak for yourself Otto. That doesn't describe any gamers I know. I'm really tired of those stereotypes.

Two "experiences" with women at gaming conventions.

I was with my 10 year old son. There was a game of Milton Bradley's Broadsides and Boarding partied. Huge game. About 12 per side. Great spectacle, if you're familiar with these ships. My son was on my right, a beautiful Polish woman on my left. Her boyfriend was with her. She put her chin on my shoulder (she was tall too), and suggested how my ships could support hers. Would I lie? grin
So I supported my son's ships and let her boyfriend take care of her.
Diplomacy goes only so far. I'm not Ben Franklin.

In another game, I ran a GASLIGHT game with about 4 players per side. A 12 year old girl was the only player who took the game seriously and took her objective. I awarded her the Best Player prize, to everyone's approval, except for a boy her age who pouted. I noticed she got more than her fair share of "advice", which boys did not. It turns out she was a "regular" on the GASLIGHT circuit. grin

These two examples are instructive, only in that they pretty much sum up the total of my gaming experience with women at conventions. They're just not there.

You are not going to succeed at getting The Ladies playing wargames. Few would want to in the first place.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP28 Sep 2017 9:40 a.m. PST


Lol. In all fairness Otto did say "average gamer" and that he was commenting based on the ones he has seen personally at conventions and other events.

Most pictures I see of games and cons do seem to support his assessment about appearance of the average attendee. :)


Winston Smith Supporting Member of TMP28 Sep 2017 9:46 a.m. PST

NOT ONCE has any woman of my acquaintance ever asked me "how can we get more males into the group?" But somehow it's a perennial on TMP--less common than complaints about new editions, but more often than scale creep--about up there with Host bashing.

On point.
I've never been asked to go scrapbooking.

brucka28 Sep 2017 3:29 p.m. PST

Yes but if you did go scrapbooking I doubt you would be treated in such condescending fashion and kibbitzing that women are when engaging in traditionally male hobbies or fields of work. I don't have women constantly telling me how to do my Nursing job. It's not just gaming, it's absolutely everywhere. Please ask any woman you know if they've experienced this at work – I'm guessing all of them have. It's not that we need more females gaming, we just need to show the one's that do a little more respect for their abilities and not assume they are neophytes that need help. – If they do, they'll ask for it. Pretty simple stuff, really.

skinkmasterreturns28 Sep 2017 4:12 p.m. PST

Haha,I am a male nurse too. Thats why I would NEVER actively encourage females to game in my circle. Its my time away from them and my S.O. It means having to put the toilet seat down.

Personal logo D6 Junkie Supporting Member of TMP28 Sep 2017 5:35 p.m. PST

Bruka +1

Ottoathome Inactive Member29 Sep 2017 6:13 a.m. PST

That fits most of the gamers I see at stores, clubs and conventions. I was also being kind. If you went to conventions you'd see them too! I'm glad you had your little moment with "le Femme" and her chinny-chin-chin.

I remember one historicon where my ersatz granddaughter (not really my granddaughter but the daughter of a friend of mine was playing in one of Howard Whitehouse's monster games. She was 16, and gorgeous, face like an angel, body like a model, and I am not exaggerating. She wanted to play the bond girl and in shorts and top and heels she was a knockout. I took a few pictures of her for her mother (also a gamer, also at the convention but in a different game massacreing middle-eastern types) . While I was doing so one of your hugely fat JABAS (as in Jaba the hut) was passing crude remarks about her and said to me "Hey get me a picture of that piece of c***t." This was between him shoveling big macs into his mush and leaving little tendrils of lettuce, special sauce, and sesame seeds in his hair.

Later in a game of mine my ersatz grand daughter was playing as one of the commanders. Halfway through the game I noticed that the ten other guys in the game were simply standing there watching her bend over the table, reach for minis and largely made almost no moves at all. Like the Aliens in "Bug eyed Monsters" they stood there "lust crazed" and largely comatose. Wynona could have shoveled their figures into the garbage can and they wouldn't have moved a muscle. Wherever she went that convention the Jabbas and Geeks clamored around like a bunch of cocker spaniels trying to get in -- I'm sure that like cocker spaniels who get so excited when their owner comes home they sometimes Bleeped text themselves the gamers would have too.

Seen it a hundred times in clubs, the sniveling, obsequious "helping" accompanied by the stink of desperation. What makes it especially hard to take is when the gamers pick-up lines is with a wide grin and dancing eyes they say, "Hey have you played Empire III??"

Read the book "Shared Fantasy" which goes deeply into the male gamer's view of women.

Anyway As I said, Cleo Liebl is the expert on this. She used to give games at the conventions for women only. These were the wives and girl friends who had been "widowed" by their boyfriends and husbands by the con. It was for fun and education if wives and girl friends wanted to learn about the games. I didn't play but I watched it and found it fascinating from the standpoint of the semiotics and attitudes. In the women vs women games there was almost no difference between a male vs male game. The same competitiveness, the same attitudes, even the same language which tended to the sexual and the gutter at times. One woman picked up the figure of a Gaul and held the figure in one hand and the broken-off spear in the other and said "Oh Cleo this guy has a broken thingy…" Another women knocking off a beer on the other side said "Well if he's got a broken thingy he's of no use to me." Guffaws all around. What was even MORE interesting was when a male gamer came up to the table to see what was going on. When they saw it was an all-female game, their eyes bugged out like a cartoon character and they made a fast retreat.

In another game she had which was an intermixed males and females it was the same as most games you saw. The males tried to dominate and there was a lot of "Heh…Heh… Hen…why don't you just let me help you with that little lady-- you just roll the dice!" It was about the same, the for women, two on each sides just sat there and said nothing for the four hours while the men just ran the show. Now and then a woman would speak up but she was smothered by shocked looks and apologies which were revolting in their obsequeousness.

The fun game was at a convention where Cleo had all the ladies on one side and all the men on the other. Leave it at there was blood on the walls, it was the most bitter nasty, acrimonious grudge holding game I ever saw and there was NO mercy from the women to the men.

There are few women in gaming because its full of men. They don't want to be around you, they want to get away from you.

Personal logo Cacique Caribe Supporting Member of TMP29 Sep 2017 8:24 a.m. PST

Wow. I've never been to a convention, so I thought all the jokes about the "Jabbas" and "Geeks" were an exaggeration.

That's hilarious, and sad, all at the same time?


Ottoathome Inactive Member29 Sep 2017 11:02 a.m. PST

Dear Dan

Yes it is sad.

And the really sad thing is that there are quite a number of women and girls who WANT to be in gaming and like gaming. Wynona my ersatz grand daughter above is a huge Harry Potter Fan, and she and her younger brother, let's call him Colin after being introduced to the game set about designing their own "Harry Potter game. They're still at it seven years later. We all met on the internet. Their mother, Sophia and I had corresponded on the net, arguing politics and religion five years before. One year she was going on a trip which would take her relatively near my home and we met. Two weeks before this she had asked me what else I liked to do besides argue politics and religion and I told her all about war games. Mom Sophia was fascinated and asked it I could put on a game for them. They stayed an extra day at my house and this coincidentally was the first day of Historicon. I put off going and put on the game for them. As soon as they started playing Mother, Father (Alan), daughter and son were hooked and loved it and have gamed ever since. The next year they planned their vacation to go to Historicon and for the year after that the same thing. The Hobby University took pictures of the two kids painting and plastered them up for several years.

I have a SECOND ersatz grand daughter, the daughter of my best friend from work who is also into gaming. I didn't introduce her, she was already into D&D but I introduced her to historical miniatures and she took to it like a duck to water. She now regularly games. She's been to conventions and is a regular attendee at "The Weekend." It's interesting to see the "heh-heh, let me help you out with that little lady" types who come up to her pull the line and are promptly castrated.

One of my personal goals is to always be on the lookout for recruits to the hobby. That's why at the Weekend which is held in the hotel which always has non gamers or "civvies" trapseing through I put a lot of signs up with pictures and the like and direct them to the ballroom. I take time out to give guided tours, especially to families with kids. It's a good place as the Dutch Wonderland and the outlet stores, resorts and Amish chinoiserie draw families on vacations. Last weekend we had two young boys who came and saw and forgot all about Dutch wonderland for the two days and gamed, gamed, gamed. One had a young sister who played too. The interest of the youngsters is always high. Adult couples too. One of the things we found was that teachers love this stuff and always ask for info because they say "My kids back in school would LOVE this stuff."

My neighbor by the way recently was in my war museum,(the downstairs) he loved the minis. So did his 14 year old daughter who thought they were neat. I promised to invite them over for a game.

basileus66 Inactive Member30 Sep 2017 4:29 a.m. PST

My daughter is not called Samantha -Guiomar, it is- but she could tell similar stories. It is like only her brother and I takes her seriously when gaming and she hates it. She was 12 years old when she gamed her first 40K game; now she is 20 and has dozens of games under her belt, and yet the usual idiot that has less experience than she does tries to give her "advice".

In another game, Team Yankee this time, I was trashing her capitalist ass with my East Germans when some dude we did not know started to "advise" her -he knew the game, so his advice was good, but that is not the point; I was about to intervene when she turned to him and told him that thanks but no thanks, that she was a big girl and could take a hit and learnt from it. That shut up the guy for good. But a fun game -we like to exchange friendly "Cold-War" insults- turned sour and the rest of the play was perfunctory -she conceded defeat shortly afterwards-.

I resented that guy for three reasons: he spoiled the fun; he interfered uninvited in a game I was having with my daughter; and most of all he made my daughter feel uncomfortable, and that is something that irks me. A lot.

Ottoathome Inactive Member30 Sep 2017 6:17 a.m. PST

Dear basileus

Thanks for the contribution. It gets far worse. One female ON THIS LIST had her husband told not to bring her to games because she "cramped his style." the "teller" said He wanted to be with the guys and didn't want to tone down his jokes or language with women around. Another not on this list had the same thing happen to her because of similar reasons.

Elbow Mac Inactive Member30 Sep 2017 6:21 a.m. PST

I think it's the wrong question. I'm not aware of trying to get anyone (male or female) into the hobby. if you have something which appeals they come.
At a recent show there seemed to me to be more girls with fathers than boys.
The question should be rather what is being done to drive them away and usefully any thread on here which mentions women quickly provides a wealth of data. The recent rape of the eldar thread disgusted some male members, god only knows what any passing female though, let alone the impression it gave the outside world.
This is a hobby where men and women are on an absolutely level field so you have to ask what those actively trying to exclude females are afraid of.
Maybe the answer is that given in another case where it was being considered to allow girls in a previously all boy activity. I was surprised at the opposition – the answer I was given was that when girls take up an activity they are usually far better at it then boys and the fear was that it would drive the boys away.
Maybe the fear of having your little toy soldiers beaten by those of a small girl is just too much for some fragile male egos.

Ottoathome Inactive Member17 Oct 2017 2:44 p.m. PST

I was casually discussing this thread with my darling wife of 47 years today on a trip to the New Jersey Shore. In a few words she summed it all up.

"Little boys are looking for sex. Little girls are looking for men to be husbands. We don't go to games or conventions because it's useless. Too many of the former and any of the latter are already married."

Personal logo capncarp Supporting Member of TMP05 Nov 2017 11:08 a.m. PST

All I can say is that when I become King of the World, my wife will be my von Bismarck. And woe to any who she takes a jaundiced eye toward.

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