What I really wanted to call this thread was "Butthurt - A Rant" but I wasn't sure if I'd get away with that term as a topic so I softened it.
Grown. Freaking. Men.
I surround myself with grown men in the hope of avoiding high school style drama. (No offense to you high schoolers.) I have failed utterly.
We in my gaming club have embarked upon another campaign. Our most recent one, a short campaign published by Games Workshop entitled "Sigmar's Blood," went fairly smoothly so we decided to start another. I wasn't the GM this time so I got to relax and just play for once.
...or so I thought.
The campaign officially started on 1 September. Today's the 5th, and the campaign is probably ending now as the GM gives up. Here's what happened, as best I can determine from the venting I've heard from multiple parties.
The first step in the campaign was for each of us players to select our starting position on the campaign map. I went first, picking a nice capital city with towns and fortifications around it. Then the next player picked, and so on... Each team was supposed to control a capital city.
But one guy, who is a constant magnet for gamer drama, chose to pick his starting spot directly adjacent to where the opposing team would have to set up. (We will call him Power Gamer) This would force early battles and possibly end the campaign outright in victory if he successfully attacked the enemy capital. This was never meant to happen, but the GM didn't consider that possibility when creating the rules for starting deployments. To be fair, Power Gamer did offer to take the move back if people expressed concern over it.
Well, most of the players didn't express a problem with it, and I wasn't too comfortable with it but I wasn't involved so I kept silent on the matter as well. I had hoped that doing so would avoid any drama. Unfortunately, there was drama. I just wasn't involved.
So the two "evil" factions had deployed but neither of them had chosen to deploy at the capital which was being threatened by Power Gamer. The problem was that one of them HAD to, so the GM contacted them both to see which one would take the position. Neither of them wanted to. (Understandably.) So the GM applied some pressure, and one of these two guys ragequit the campaign. (We will call him Ragequit)
And vented to me about it. Now, I understand his frustration with Power Gamer. They'd played before and Power Gamer has a reputation for gaming the rules and using exploits to gain victory. He's not a bad guy, and we've been friends for longer than most of you pups have been alive, but I do know him to be someone who has a hard time distinguishing between sportsmanlike gaming and power gaming. Even this wouldn't be so bad, but I've tried several times to talk with him about this problem and I've just been unable to get through.
Because Power Gamer and Ragequit have had some friction between them during games in the past because of this, Ragequit was annoyed that Power Gamer had deployed in such a way that if Ragequit took that capital, they'd be forced to play each other. A lot. So he started texting me to vent about this, and how he didn't want to be in the campaign anymore as a result.
So the GM was frantically trying to resolve this issue while the rest of the players waited for the next stage of the campaign to begin.
Meanwhile, I get in contact with Power Gamer to see what he thinks, and he's all annoyed that nobody has come to him to talk about the problem. Well, I could understand that except that he's notoriously difficult to talk to about this stuff.
So then the GM E-mails me to vent, saying basically all the stuff I've already heard from Ragequit. And yes, Ragequit dropped out of the campaign. The GM wants to end the campaign, and the shortest campaign in my gaming club history comes to a tragic end.
I'm trying to be light hearted about this, but it isn't easy. People who are full grown adults and ought to have better awareness shouldn't have these problems. I hang out with intelligent, clear thinking people, and yet sometimes you put them together in a room and it devolves into a drama ridden whinefest of epic proportions.
"He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool."
"Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus."