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BEAT
12-05-2013, 07:22 AM
There now you never have to post about it in webcomics again.

madhair60
12-05-2013, 07:27 AM
Penny Arcade has been consistently great since forever, with absolutely no decline or loss of quality.

upupdowndown
12-05-2013, 08:43 AM
counterpoint: Penny Arcade as a comic hasn't declined in quality, but my enjoyment of PA has declined in the past few years as I've become more and more aware that PA Corp. is run by giant entitled man-babies who have been unable to move on from traumas that are over two decades old at this point

Zef
12-05-2013, 08:53 AM
Wait, what'd they do now that it deserves its own thread? Was there an ill-thought followup to the four-jobs-in-one post?

Parish
12-05-2013, 08:58 AM
tangent: Penny Arcade has depicted pennies or arcades so rarely as to make its name a false pretext, which most lawyers would agree is an actionable offense.

Behemoth
12-05-2013, 09:04 AM
counterpoint: Penny Arcade as a comic hasn't declined in quality, but my enjoyment of PA has declined in the past few years as I've become more and more aware that PA Corp. is run by giant entitled man-babies who have been unable to move on from traumas that are over two decades old at this point

As usual, upupdowndown speaks the Truth.

waterpot
12-05-2013, 09:12 AM
counterpoint: Penny Arcade as a comic hasn't declined in quality, but my enjoyment of PA has declined in the past few years as I've become more and more aware that PA Corp. is run by giant entitled man-babies who have been unable to move on from traumas that are over two decades old at this point

thats the point since day one they have been man babies,

the first book intro summaries that well, introduced the idea that gamers that prefered to stay all night playing final fantasy 3 instead of going to parties during highschool existed, that we were not alone and appealed the young gamer demographic,
society that hated us because we liked kiddie games (before the frat boys started to play halo) kinda tycho and gabe represented all of us and we gave them our support

(it seems now its targeting 30 somethings gamer dads, and Im afraid that they are out of touch with the new gamer generation(discussed that a lot in the webcomcis thread))


edit.- it seems trenches is updating again with a new writter and artist combo.

madhair60
12-05-2013, 09:13 AM
No online comic has made me laugh as frequently or as hard as PA.

waterpot
12-05-2013, 09:14 AM
tangent: Penny Arcade has depicted pennies or arcades so rarely as to make its name a false pretext, which most lawyers would agree is an actionable offense.

its seems to be trent in webcomics with names that nothing have to do with the content
(octupus pie, oatmeal, questionable content etc)

madhair60
12-05-2013, 09:23 AM
I think Questionable Content has a lot of relevance, actually.

Adam
12-05-2013, 09:29 AM
Penny Arcade will never have a strip funnier than Claw Shrimp so they should just pack it up and go home.

Behemoth
12-05-2013, 09:40 AM
No online comic has made me laugh as frequently or as hard as PA.

I agree, but it doesn't change the fact that I think Jerry and Mike are assholes (and in fact the very bullies they so often decry), and the more that's become apparent the more it's lessened my enjoyment of the comic.

Büge
12-05-2013, 09:42 AM
It has become apparent that Penny Arcade has become a part of the system rather than being apart from the system. They've lost a lot of their objectivity.

reibeatall
12-05-2013, 09:44 AM
Penny Arcade will never have a strip funnier than Carrot Cake Soup so they should just pack it up and go home.

Wolfgang
12-05-2013, 10:43 AM
I like Penny Arcade but agree that Mike is a pretty big asshole, given that he has stated in the past that he's "incapable of not being an asshole". I don't think Jerry is, as such, but he's way too much Mike's submissive to have any real effect at reigning him in.

Falselogic
12-05-2013, 11:04 AM
There now you never have to post about it in webcomics again.

You can't tell me what to do!

shivam
12-05-2013, 11:58 AM
i really enjoy penny arcade, but i'm wondering how much of that is based on nostalgia of how awesome they used to be.

Büge
12-05-2013, 12:05 PM
i really enjoy penny arcade, but i'm wondering how much of that is based on nostalgia of how awesome they used to be.

Would you find the comics funny if they WEREN'T being written/drawn by Jerry/Mike? If not, then yes it might.

MCBanjoMike
12-05-2013, 12:29 PM
I definitely feel like the shine has come off the whole Penny Arcade enterprise in the last year or few, but they still (occasionally) make a pretty good comic. Lots of them are forgettable, but every once in a while they really make me laugh. And it never feels phoned-in the way that, uh, anything by Scott Kurtz does.

madhair60
12-05-2013, 12:30 PM
Would you find the comics funny if they WEREN'T being written/drawn by Jerry/Mike? If not, then yes it might.

But Mike's art is what elevates a lot of them.

Wolfgang
12-05-2013, 12:42 PM
And it never feels phoned-in the way that, uh, anything by Scott Kurtz does.

Zef
12-05-2013, 12:48 PM
I stopped reading PA around the dickwolves era, but today, I really really wish there were a way to continue to attend PAX without simultaneously supporting their enterprise.

Gunther, an Otter
12-05-2013, 12:49 PM
reverse-phantom counter-tangent Trenches sucks cause of Penny Arcade.

Say what you will about Scott Kurtz, (he's loud and fat and smells bad, he is the creepy nice guy that Beloved school idol Newspaper comics wrongfully rejected romantic advances of and how she will RUE, his breasts sway and chime in the wind with evoking long past summers on grandmas porch, etc etc)
But PVP can claim competence as a long form storytelling comic, and Table Titans is probably the best thing Kurtz is doing right now or has in years (maybe ever, but no one cares enough to trawl his archives so the world will NEVER KNOW.)

But Trenches just spins and sputters, neither humour juggernaut that Penny Arcade is/was nor supporting the most basic of Les Situations Comical.
And those same narrative weakness seemed to be why things like Lookouts, A delightful premise and beautiful world catapulted into brutal face-plants because the story gets compressed to complete obtusity.

But it seems like Lookouts or Sand the cowboy time adventure was something they really wanted to do, but they its less commercially viable for them to pursue that kind of project so in the meantime their whole enterprise seems kind of chafed and gnashing its teeth impotently.

Sven
12-05-2013, 12:54 PM
tangent: Penny Arcade has depicted pennies or arcades so rarely as to make its name a false pretext, which most lawyers would agree is an actionable offense.

Countertangent: as pennies have been eliminated in Canada, future generations will be confused why that word is in the title.

waterpot
12-05-2013, 12:57 PM
I miss monica Ray "Phuzzy comics"
Now she updates once every blue moon
Since she became the trenches new artist
I know that it pays her bills and its a great opportunity
For her but I still miss Phuzzy comics

About lookouts I liked the print version
That is drawn and written by someone else
But the web version is a mess
Sometimes is hard to understand what the hell is going on

BEAT
12-05-2013, 01:06 PM
Wait, what'd they do now that it deserves its own thread? Was there an ill-thought followup to the four-jobs-in-one post?Nothing. Dudes in webcomics were like PENNY ARCADE PENNY ARCADE PENNY ARCADE and other dudes were like yo I wanna talk about stuff that's not penny arcade.

Also everything is worth its own thread because it's a forum I mean seriously.

MCBanjoMike
12-05-2013, 02:09 PM
reverse-phantom counter-tangent Trenches sucks cause of Penny Arcade. [etc etc]

The problems of Scott Kurtz are not the same as the problems of Mike/Jerry. Scott is pathologically unable to restrict himself to one project at a time, and while whichever one he is enamored with will do fairly well, all the rest of his work suffers enormously while his attention is divided. Since he started up the Trenches and Table Titans, PVP has been indescribably lazy, using the easiest, most obvious jokes he can possibly make and putting little to no effort into the drawings. Or at least, that's how it was when I stopped reading it again a few months back. And Trenches is simply the result of three artists who all have better things to do shitting out something because they said they would and whose pride apparently won't allow them to just mercy kill the damn thing. I've always maintained that Kurtz is a talented guy, deep down. The best PVP arcs are funny, well-written and even touching, and anyone who saw his "guest week" from about 10 years ago knows the guy is a really flexible artist who can ape any style. The problem is that he just can't focus on one project and consistently bring his A-game to it, and his B-game is C-tier at best. It's possible that Table Titans is a decent comic, since it's what is getting most of his attention right now, but I don't like role-playing games enough to follow the comic regularly.

As for the PA guys, their problem is that they don't have the attention span for longer projects. Once or twice a year they'll break out some sort of "great work" that spans all of maybe 8 comics, and if you read the news posts you'll see they are clearly exhausted by the time they end. 8 pages does not a long comic make, so these things always wind up turning into story arclets that don't give the reader long enough to really get into the world they've made. The Lookouts comics suffered from being nearly incomprehensible at times, because in Jerry's mind that's like an 800-page novel and he thinks he has successfully communicated a bunch of story points and world building that flies by too quickly for people to parse. It might take them 3 weeks to put one of those together, but it takes about 2 minutes to read the whole thing once it's done. I'd like to see more of those other worlds, and I honestly don't give a damn if they have to abandon their news-of-the-week gag strips for months at a time to make that happen. But it seems like they're afraid the readership will desert them if they change course like that - or else maybe they don't actually want to give up the gag-a-day stuff.

Dawnswalker
12-05-2013, 04:18 PM
I stopped reading PA completely after the performance at PAX that proved that they have never learned anything from anything and that they never will, so I can't say anything about their most recent strips. I think I can fairly say that the best of their work is long past, though. A genuinely laugh out loud funny PA has been a "sometimes thing" for years now, as opposed to back in the day, where they were consistently funny once they hit their stride.

The Trenches is a completely unfunny and plodding waste of a premise (and a complete waste of a way to possibly affect change in a shitty industry full of shitty practices, though to be fair that was never promoted as a feature of Trenches), so I hope that Monica and Ty are being paid handsomely for what is probably a shitty job to have. BETTER THAN THEIR IT SLAVE AM I RIGHT? LOLOLOLOLOL

Zef
12-05-2013, 04:49 PM
Wait, where's it say that Monica Ray is drawing this? The comics themselves are stamped with J&M&K as the "authors," and the About page has a different artist, Mary Cagle.

And on that note, this is my first time visiting that comic (I only went there because of the above comments) and I think it's pretty lousy of the three men to sign each strip with their copyright, and only acknowledge, oh yeah, the artist herself, in an About page that relatively few people would bother looking at.

Büge
12-05-2013, 06:20 PM
So the signatory "authors" of the strip are now contributing nothing at all.

Just like in a REAL comic. ;)

Wolfgang
12-05-2013, 06:28 PM
Trenches has gotten a bit better though

RAC
12-05-2013, 07:42 PM
I'm not sure what the biggest problem with Penny Arcade is right now, but I see two. One is the ways in which they're not the people they were when it began (Jerry's rant earlier in the year on how he should be free to spoil Bioshock Infinite because everyone "should have" played the game already, like we all have the money and gaming time he has; also the one that was approaching apologism on all the features consumer outcry have since stripped out of the Xbox One because it was important for Microsoft to court developers over, y'know, customers). The other is the ways in which they still are what they were then (anything Mike ever says). But either way we have definitely grown apart and it's definitely not my first stop on those three days of the week anymore.

I can very easily foresee a time when I give up on it altogether if they continue along their current trajectories, and they probably will.

Dart Zaidyer
12-05-2013, 08:17 PM
Penny Arcade's basic problem is actually very simple:

They're old men pretending to still be young men.

Dawnswalker
12-05-2013, 08:21 PM
It doesn't! There's no acknowledgement anywhere except for the original announcement (on twitter) that Monica had taken over art duties and Ty Halley had taken over the writing. So the signatory "authors" of the strip are now contributing nothing at all.

You can tell it's Monica from the art style. Otherwise, no acknowledgement whatsoever.

Wolfgang
12-05-2013, 08:42 PM
They're old men pretending to still be young men.

what exactly do you consider "old"

Falselogic
12-05-2013, 08:43 PM
what exactly do you consider "old"

about your age grandpa!

*HA HA*

Wolfgang
12-05-2013, 08:47 PM
about your age grandpa!

*HA HA*

i know You are but what am i

Büge
12-05-2013, 08:50 PM
also the one that was approaching apologism on all the features consumer outcry have since stripped out of the Xbox One because it was important for Microsoft to court developers over, y'know, customers).

Also their Diablo III and Mass Effect 3 strawmen.

Zef
12-05-2013, 08:59 PM
You can tell it's Monica from the art style. Otherwise, no acknowledgement whatsoever.

You can? o_O It looks the same now as it does in the first few strips in the archive. Her own webcomic's art is so much more vibrant and fun... :(

Mr. J
12-05-2013, 10:24 PM
I never read Penny-Arcade in its heyday but I've read it on and off for a few years just as something random to look at when I have some free time. Some of the comics are good but most are just middling. The one good thing to come from Penny Arcade is Strip Search and some of the other web shows they've supported (go watch all of Shut Up and Sit Down).

sheridanmovieguy
12-06-2013, 12:39 AM
I see it like this: reading a Penny Arcade takes like 30 seconds. So I still do. Sometimes I chuckle. It's just like in olden times when people read newspapers and looked at the funnies. Sometimes they were funny. Often times they weren't. But oh well.

I'll admit, I liked them more a few years back, but I don't like thinking of things like that too much because I am uncomfortable talking about the subject of aging, so I just sort of pretend it is what it always was. It's been gradual enough that it works most of the time.

Gunther, an Otter
12-06-2013, 12:41 AM
Trenches has gotten a bit better though


Trenches isnt striking out. Its definitely leagues better than the last "Season". But its really only six episodes in, and really kind of squandering Monica's talents so I dont know that it could be called good.

But Trenches is an oddity among vainglorious trainwrecks and its terrible existance seems to properly fit its themes of never knowing whether the source of your misery is due to incompetence, malice or self sabotage.

The rigid adherence to character templates is really kind of an odd choice (read:bad) in contrast to Penny Arcade right now though, because of the weird offputting distortion of the unicorn facts comic, and the santa one from monday are pretty much the opposite of that. Utter disregard for anything resembling a template and simply burst raw id in line form.
Those drawings are great though because they are the most basic expression of Mike's drawing skills. They're like the falling action of a Tragedy, all Macbeth murders and Oedipus Eye Gouging.

Sanagi
12-06-2013, 02:06 AM
The PA guys dropped pretty far in my coolness rankings. I'd rate their fall at one fifth of a Ben Stein. But hey, that's only one twentieth of a Michael Jackson.

madhair60
12-06-2013, 02:07 AM
Penny Arcade's basic problem is actually very simple:

They're old men pretending to still be young men.

It's so simple it makes no sense and needs a thorough explanation and potential rewording

Parish
12-06-2013, 03:38 AM
Countertangent: as pennies have been eliminated in Canada, future generations will be confused why that word is in the title.

Perhaps they will migrate to the UK and become Tuppence Arcade (at current exchange rates, a more than 300% value increase over Penny Arcade, making it a zeitgeisty reflection of the impact of inflation over these past 15 years).

madhair60
12-06-2013, 03:45 AM
We don't really have tuppences anymore. Except for the less-than-prevalent slang term for a vagina.

Perhaps it would still be appropriate.

Parish
12-06-2013, 04:19 AM
Ok, then Canada. Toonie Arcade.

Loki
12-06-2013, 04:27 AM
Except for the less-than-prevalent slang term for a vagina.

No foolin? I learned something today.

madhair60
12-06-2013, 04:34 AM
Oh yes, indeed. A lady's tuppence.

If there's one thing Britain does well, it's disgraceful slang terms for the vagina.

Loki
12-06-2013, 04:43 AM
Suddenly Tuppence a Bag from Marry Poppins takes on a whole new connotation.

Büge
12-06-2013, 05:33 AM
Ok, then Canada. Toonie Arcade.

Goddamn inflation. Used to be Loonie Arcade.

madhair60
12-06-2013, 05:43 AM
If it was British it'd be called Penny Amusements. And it would be about fruit machines and the Tuppenny Waterfalls. And a single, broken Sega Rally cab.

Zef
12-06-2013, 06:55 AM
Maybe they should just outsource production south of the border and give us Peso Arcade.

locit
12-06-2013, 07:04 AM
Something something Yenny Arcade?

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 07:37 AM
Penny Arcade's basic problem is actually very simple:

They're old men pretending to still be young men.

Yeah that doesn't make any sense at all.

UUDD laid out the reasons why I don't like supporting Mike and Jerry as people, even if their only role anymore is as mascots for a media company. Like Mickey and Donald except virulently misogynistic

The strip is still funny more often than not and the art is good, but they've gotten significantly worse at camouflaging the product placement and advertorial content. And sometimes we have sit through two weeks of Jerry inflicting his writing chops on us

BEAT
12-06-2013, 07:41 AM
I only care about penny arcade in that is is the reason PAX exists, and I only care about PAX because it offers me glorious opportunity to hang out with you forum dudes whom I have grown to love dearly.

That's all I need.

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 07:42 AM
Trenches isnt striking out. Its definitely leagues better than the last "Season".

Good take on things.

The cool thing about Trenches is that their company cash flow could handle them losing $Texas without issue, so the only thing that can kill this shambling wreck is the good taste and forbearance of all involved

So I can confidently predict our grandchildren will read and bitch about Trenches

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 07:49 AM
I only care about penny arcade in that is is the reason PAX exists, and I only care about PAX because it offers me glorious opportunity to hang out with you forum dudes whom I have grown to love dearly.

That's all I need.

PAX and to a lesser extent Blizzcon benefit from the cultural meme that travel must be to a Thing

I see it a lot with my circle of friends, where everyone will descend on an event then spend the entire week hanging out in their hotel rooms or at the beach. The event becomes a convenient excuse to drop a couple grand on seeing people you miss.

E: possibly an overreaction to seeing my white friends use their limited vacation time as a way to see people they hate on holidays they don't celebrate

Destil
12-06-2013, 09:26 AM
E: possibly an overreaction to seeing my white friends use their limited vacation time as a way to see people they hate on holidays they don't celebrate

I mean, it's that or their families.

Wolfgang
12-06-2013, 10:04 AM
Everything else aside, tell me the middle panel of the one that's still up currently isn't amazing

Falselogic
12-06-2013, 10:24 AM
Everything else aside, tell me the middle panel of the one that's still up currently isn't amazing

Gabe is just standing there. What is amazing about that?

Wolfgang
12-06-2013, 10:55 AM
The one before it, then, PA is terrible about their updating schedule, too

shivam
12-06-2013, 11:27 AM
PAX and to a lesser extent Blizzcon benefit from the cultural meme that travel must be to a Thing

I see it a lot with my circle of friends, where everyone will descend on an event then spend the entire week hanging out in their hotel rooms or at the beach. The event becomes a convenient excuse to drop a couple grand on seeing people you miss.

E: possibly an overreaction to seeing my white friends use their limited vacation time as a way to see people they hate on holidays they don't celebrate

despite what tumblr tells us, the world isn't full of introverts, and some of us really relish the opportunity to spend meaningful face to face time with people we are close with. PAX affords that opportunity, and for that i'm grateful.

(of course, talcon does too, but the more the merrier)

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 12:13 PM
I think his point is that if you want to spend time with people and don't care about the convention, then why pay for the convention when you can just spend time with people somewhere else for maybe cheaper.

Not sure where the introvert rant even comes into this.

Exactly. Back in the day my friends and I would go out of our way to spend a long weekend at Otakon every year, until one year we realized the convention was more of a hassle than anything else and we were better off just going anywhere and doing anything

Suddenly the calendar was a lot more open and we didn't have to deal with reeking, unsocialized nerds in the tens of thousands

Put explicitly:

PAX affords that opportunity, and for that i'm grateful

is wrong. Money and time to devote to travel gives the opportunity.

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 12:16 PM
The one before it, then, PA is terrible about their updating schedule, too

schedule?

sheridanmovieguy
12-06-2013, 12:36 PM
I think his point is that if you want to spend time with people and don't care about the convention, then why pay for the convention when you can just spend time with people somewhere else for maybe cheaper.

Because they have fun at the convention too? That that was the impression I got from the PAX goers at least.

I mean, it's not as if BEAT didn't enjoy creating his character with the help of a Wizard in the Barkley Shut up and Jam Gaiden tent.

Büge
12-06-2013, 12:44 PM
I think his point is that if you want to spend time with people and don't care about the convention, then why pay for the convention when you can just spend time with people somewhere else for maybe cheaper.

Maybe because they also want to go to a convention?

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 12:45 PM
Maybe because they also want to go to a convention?

Now you just talking crazy

MCBanjoMike
12-06-2013, 01:09 PM
Yeah, that's where I'm getting to be. I like seeing my nerd friends, but PAX is gradually becoming less and less important to the experience. It's possible that next year we'll just organize something at a different time in a different place, avoid the registration-day frenzy and maybe save some money in the process.

I would miss seeing all the indie game exhibitors at PAX, though. Is there another venue where they all gather like that that is open to the public?

BEAT
12-06-2013, 01:15 PM
Because they have fun at the convention too? That that was the impression I got from the PAX goers at least.

I mean, it's not as if BEAT didn't enjoy creating his character with the help of a Wizard in the Barkley Shut up and Jam Gaiden tent.

This is intenesly true. I enjoy both

Kishi
12-06-2013, 01:23 PM
The strip is still funny more often than not and the art is good, but they've gotten significantly worse at camouflaging the product placement and advertorial content.

*casually leans against door frame* Watching some Twitch?

Zef
12-06-2013, 01:26 PM
I would miss seeing all the indie game exhibitors at PAX, though. Is there another venue where they all gather like that that is open to the public?

Well, whaddaya know! (http://bostonfig.com/)

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 01:56 PM
*casually leans against door frame* Watching some Twitch?

Woo I can barely keep up with all the fresh HD content streamed live from other gamers in real time, what with these speedy Amazon shipments coming in nonstop! UH OH MY COCK IS OUT WHAT

Falselogic
12-06-2013, 06:08 PM
Hey good thing we have this thing now!

Penny Arcade shuts down PATV and PAR! (http://penny-arcade.com/2013/12/06/changes)

Nothing like looking for a job right before the holidays!

waterpot
12-06-2013, 06:47 PM
Hey good thing we have this thing now!

Penny Arcade shuts down PATV and PAR! (http://penny-arcade.com/2013/12/06/changes)

Nothing like looking for a job right before the holidays!
perhaps they didnt want to pay xmas bonus to them,
between the guy they are hiring (with low salary) getting rid of patv and par
are they doing fine? are they having money troubles?


anyway
thats bad I feel sorry for them, I will not miss Ben Kuchera,
never liked penny arcade report since it bashed kotaku and other gaming sites
(and still linked their articles )

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 06:55 PM
This is actually p smart because they diluted the brand and I have doubts they ever brought in the revenue needed to justify moving into those media.

And giving Mike and Jerry fuckoff big creative projects that will keep them too busy to say idiotic shit or throw their weight around on actual business decisions is the kind of thing that happens all the time when founders become liabilities.

breakman
12-06-2013, 09:50 PM
It's kinda funny that he lists 8 different things they can now focus on after shutting down those 2 things.

Ample Vigour
12-06-2013, 10:07 PM
It's kinda funny that he lists 8 different things they can now focus on after shutting down those 2 things.

Note that zero of those new things will require the rest of the business end of PA to do anything but clap with frozen smiles on their faces for 90% of development

¡HarlequinPanic!
12-07-2013, 01:09 AM
Smart choice, I'm glad it happened, the comic has little interest to me any longer but I'm interested in seeing what they come up with now that they can apparently devote more resources to it.

I like conventions too 8)

Dizzy
12-07-2013, 07:08 AM
Not seeing much words tossed around about Robert Khoooooo.

Ample Vigour
12-07-2013, 08:02 AM
Not seeing much words tossed around about Robert Khoooooo.

Khoo gambled on a brand extension, possibly fueled by outside capital, and it failed. Tune in next week when they refocus on core business and lean processes to maximize their shareholder return

Dizzy
12-07-2013, 08:12 AM
He seems like he should be working for a Silicon Valley startup instead for a company based around a three-panel webcomic.

The Raider Dr. Jones
12-07-2013, 08:32 AM
Expect he would be if he hadn't tripped over a goldmine in PA. Running a startup, he's a slave to the VC and the whole thing probably ends in tears. Owning a piece of PA (I assume he has a stake in the enterprise, how could he not) he's richer than shit and set for life if he ever decides he's bored of a career in nerd-wrangling.

The more I think about it the more I suspect, as AV notes, that PAR and PATV were run with somebody else's money.

Büge
12-07-2013, 08:36 AM
Wow. I was really enjoying Checkpoint, too.

Hmm. Seems like there's less and less reason to visit PA these days.

Zef
12-07-2013, 09:56 AM
Unwarranted, baseless speculation time!

The programmer/developer/sysadmin/IT manager guy is leaving because, with PA cutting back on TV and Report, his duties maintaining the PA IT Machine would have been cut down along with his salary. Thus, he's trotting off to greener pastures.

Ample Vigour
12-07-2013, 11:25 AM
He seems like he should be working for a Silicon Valley startup instead for a company based around a three-panel webcomic.

Expect he would be if he hadn't tripped over a goldmine in PA. Running a startup, he's a slave to the VC and the whole thing probably ends in tears. Owning a piece of PA (I assume he has a stake in the enterprise, how could he not) he's richer than shit and set for life if he ever decides he's bored of a career in nerd-wrangling.

Agreedo w Raider

Foster is a good program regionally but if you have the choice between being king shit at a money factory like PA and laying your dick on the chopping block by competing with Stanford and MIT grads (and now that the IB gold rush is over Harvard and Wharton too) in the bay area, well

I think I said this on IRC, but: It's not like Khoo is some once-in-a-generation evil genius deadset on turning PA into his personal media empire. Anyone who spent two years with Deloitte or another management shop would have similar success

The Raider Dr. Jones
12-07-2013, 12:09 PM
Yeh. Like I say, he tripped and fell into a market that was ripe for exploitation and while groping about in a concussed haze laid hands on a brand tailor-made to exploit it. (This is not exactly giving him enough credit but I hope you take my general meaning.)

Looking back, it occurs to me that the first brand that stumbled on the potential of organizing gamers into a cult following was probably Die Hard Game Fan. it is interesting to wonder what that could have become if Dave Halverson weren't so much more idiot than savant and the operation had remained stable enough to survive into the PS2/Xbox generation. Who can say.

Wolfgang
12-07-2013, 12:19 PM
On PA shutdowns and taking Tycho at his word: why would he start obfuscating facts in order to save face now when he lets mike type and publish all the things he does

The Raider Dr. Jones
12-07-2013, 12:21 PM
I dunno, it makes sense to me that he would do his best to keep control over everything he is able to control, and that that category would not encompass the shit comes out of Gabe's yap.

it occurs to me that this would be a shortsighted strategy, though; if he were to publicly oppose and feud with Gabe on some issue it would be the fuckin megapowers explode of internet nerddom and draw traffic for the ages.

estragon
12-07-2013, 12:30 PM
things like the Pins or The New Kid or Daughters of the Eyrewood or Thornwatch or The Lookouts or Automata deserve every ounce of our resources

...does anyone actually like these things?

Okay, the Pins I get. They're exploiting nerds' weakness for limited edition collectables like Steam trading cards, etc.

But I find pretty much all of PA's attempts at long for storytelling to be completely unreadable garbage with panel layouts that just make no sense. I guess they are all highly marketable though, especially if they hired someone else to draw/animate them to make them intelligible...

Ample Vigour
12-07-2013, 12:39 PM
On PA shutdowns and taking Tycho at his word: why would he start obfuscating facts in order to save face now when he lets mike type and publish all the things he does

Serious question: When in the last five years has either PA mouthpiece come out and said "Hey, we lost our shirts on this idea we had so we're going to shut it down before we go broke."

MCBanjoMike
12-07-2013, 12:40 PM
...does anyone actually like these things?

I think they're OK, but the important thing is that Gabe and Tycho seem really excited by them. I'd rather see the guys work on something that will motivate them than just crank out endless gag strips for the next 30 years. Their history with long-form storytelling is pretty checkered (or maybe the board is just all black), but it's possible that they will get better at it if they actually do more than 10 pages a year of serial comics.

Dizzy
12-07-2013, 12:57 PM
Whoever created the "I fucked your mom" tag is the king of kings.

Anyways, the reason I think Khoo would be more fit in a Silicon Valley biz is because he conducts himself as if he was working for some aggressive tech startup, instead of a media business he helped build from the ground up by applying a basic business model that all media companies have used for decades. He exudes the mentality (http://www.jwz.org/blog/2011/11/watch-a-vc-use-my-name-to-sell-a-con/) of those kinds of people.

Wolfgang
12-07-2013, 01:44 PM
Serious question: When in the last five years has either PA mouthpiece come out and said "Hey, we lost our shirts on this idea we had so we're going to shut it down before we go broke."

Have they needed to? I think you're trying to pick apart a point I'm not making.

Ample Vigour
12-07-2013, 01:54 PM
Have they needed to? I think you're trying to pick apart a point I'm not making.

I think we're agreeing at each other. It would be stupid and unprofessional for them to do so.

The point I was trying to make is that the statement about patv and par was honest as it could have been and well done besides.

Sprite
12-07-2013, 01:55 PM
Wow. I was really enjoying Checkpoint, too.
Does Penny Arcade own Checkpoint? I imagine LoadingReadyRun could continue it fairly easily on their own website.

Wolfgang
12-07-2013, 01:58 PM
I think we're agreeing at each other. It would be stupid and unprofessional for them to do so.

The point I was trying to make is that the statement about patv and par was honest as it could have been and well done besides.

*nod nod*

Does Penny Arcade own Checkpoint? I imagine LoadingReadyRun could continue it fairly easily on their own website.

This honestly doesn't even seem like much of a blow to these other productions. Regardless what you think of PA as a strip or company, they make a good launchpad. The things they've hosted now all have substantial fanbases of their own, and will likely do well wherever they are. It seems like the biggest "losses" from this will be the things PA produced themselves, like Strip Search and the documentary webseries.

Sprite
12-07-2013, 03:17 PM
Surely Strip Search and the documentary will be archived somewhere, right?

But yeah, given how big Khoo is on creative folks retaining control of their own original IPs,* I can't imagine Penny Arcade just sitting on the shows made by other people. Those shows will have to sink or swim all on their own now, but the PATV experiment is still a net positive from their end.

McClain
12-07-2013, 03:43 PM
RE: Pax: I still enjoy it, so I'm going despite the PA guys kind being dipshits.

That said, if people are looking for new conventions, there's one starting up in Atlanta next year. (http://www.southernfriedgameroomexpo.com/) :D

The Raider Dr. Jones
12-07-2013, 04:17 PM
That said, if people are looking for new conventions, there's one starting up in Atlanta next year. (http://www.southernfriedgameroomexpo.com/) :D

If you ever wanted to run up and sucker-punch Billy Mitchell, here's your chance!

McClain
12-07-2013, 04:47 PM
If you ever wanted to run up and sucker-punch Billy Mitchell, here's your chance!

I'm not really sure what it says about his "fame" if he's showing up to first-year cons, but whatever. I'm in it for the hotel ballroom filled with pinball and arcade games.

In all seriousness, I'd love for this to become a Big Deal kind of con, or at the very least be successful enough to be annual and maybe even draw on tyrants into town.

waterpot
12-07-2013, 06:04 PM
lol super lol

http://pilli-adventure.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/1-B-rC053YAjSfRm-OMzlmTA-300x187.png

You Say Underling, I Say Overqualified
Hiring Practices Theater guest-starring those irascible scamps from Penny Arcade, God love ‘em
http://fleen.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/PA_DS-289x300.png
link for the rest (https://medium.com/the-nib/d9867f2191c8)

The Raider Dr. Jones
12-07-2013, 06:51 PM
In all seriousness, I'd love for this to become a Big Deal kind of con, or at the very least be successful enough to be annual and maybe even draw on tyrants into town.

Naw, for real that looks like a fun show. The pre-reg price is plenty reasonable for three days and if I were at all close I would go and make great big googly eyes at the guy who co-designed Bride of Pin-Bot.

Wolfgang
12-07-2013, 09:03 PM
Surely Strip Search and the documentary will be archived somewhere, right?

I'd assume the header and all (PA-owned) related content will stay in place for the foreseeable future, because it's worthwhile stuff, just nothing new added to it.

Büge
12-07-2013, 09:15 PM
"I fucked your mom"

Close, but no cigar. (http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2005/12/30)

Ample Vigour
12-07-2013, 10:15 PM
I'd assume the header and all (PA-owned) related content will stay in place for the foreseeable future, because it's worthwhile stuff, just nothing new added to it.

I'm curious to see if they kickstart another video feature, or if they scrap that entire line of business.

LBD_Nytetrayn
12-08-2013, 02:14 AM
Close, but no cigar. (http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2005/12/30)

I thought it came from Mike of Roomies/It's Walky/Shortpacked/Dumbing of Age.

Sprite
12-08-2013, 08:49 AM
The humorous quip of sleeping with the progenitor of a close friend or enemy goes back many a year.

TK Flash
12-09-2013, 03:12 PM
I guess funny faces are the punchlines now?

Adam
12-09-2013, 03:15 PM
I boan't knoww!!

madhair60
12-09-2013, 04:22 PM
Haha, that was another good one.

Wolfgang
12-09-2013, 08:12 PM
Haha, that was another good one.

It turns out if you think this you literally necessarily think it's a good thing if someone is raped.

madhair60
12-10-2013, 02:37 AM
Yeah, the implication that I should feel guilt for enjoying Penny Arcade is a bit of a grotesque one to me. I dig it and I will (to my fake eternal shame) continue to buy the collected editions, because I like their comic so much and want to read it in book form. I also hugely enjoyed what I saw of Penny Arcade: the Series.

Enjoying Penny Arcade is not an endorsement of transphobia. It's just... welllll... *awkward shuffle* ...feels like walking into a minefield to even approach this, but... I can't moderate what I do and don't enjoy to appease a disparate, inconsistent minority who seem to be offended by almost everything in this hobby. I can acknowledge problematic comments from Mike, and I disapprove of them, but I like the comic more than I am arsed to argue the toss. I know I'm not transphobic, I know if a friend of mine said something transphobic I would chew them out. I'm interested in discussing it because I have some questions, but whenever I try to approach anyone with them I tend to get dismissed with a sort of "you should know this already" stubbornness, a disdain that I have to even ask, that ignorance is necessarily the same thing as cruelty.

Edit: If I've said anything breathtakingly unpleasant here please tell me, because I honestly didn't mean to and I hope I can learn to communicate better.

MCBanjoMike
12-10-2013, 06:06 AM
It is a perfectly reasonable thing to distinguish between a created work and the person who made it. You can enjoy Wagner's music despite the fact that he was a bigot, and that's OK. Of course, it gets a bit dicier when you're paying someone whose views you don't agree with to continue producing their work, but I don't think that Gabe's idiocy is as detrimental to society as, say, Orson Scott Card's lobbying against gay rights.

Anyway, do not feel bad about enjoying a comic.

upupdowndown
12-10-2013, 06:58 AM
It is a perfectly reasonable thing to distinguish between a created work and the person who made it. You can enjoy Wagner's music despite the fact that he was a bigot, and that's OK. Of course, it gets a bit dicier when you're paying someone whose views you don't agree with to continue producing their work, but I don't think that Gabe's idiocy is as detrimental to society as, say, Orson Scott Card's lobbying against gay rights.

Anyway, do not feel bad about enjoying a comic.

Yeah, OSC is a Special Case since he's actively lobbying against gay rights, he's on the board of the National Organization for Marriage, and he's written horrible screeds that armed revolution in the US would be justified if gay marriage became legal.

Gabe's just an idiot.

SpoonyBardOL
12-10-2013, 07:37 AM
Anyway, do not feel bad about enjoying a comic.

I feel like this needs to be combined with the soup kitchen meme here and posted whenever this debate pops back up.

Wolfgang
12-10-2013, 07:54 AM
Yeah, OSC is a Special Case since he's actively lobbying against gay rights, he's on the board of the National Organization for Marriage, and he's written horrible screeds that armed revolution in the US would be justified if gay marriage became legal.

Gabe's just an idiot.

I didn't see Ender's Game apart from the fact that it looked dumb and was horribly reviewed.

Parish
12-10-2013, 08:24 AM
I feel like this needs to be combined with the soup kitchen meme here and posted whenever this debate pops back up.

Or I could just start banning people who try and shame others for liking what they like.

RAC
12-10-2013, 02:12 PM
Or I could just start banning people who try and shame others for liking what they like.

I suspect that's a list that would add up quickly and feature a variety of familiar names. But it's also not a bad idea at all.

estragon
12-12-2013, 11:29 AM
And giving Mike and Jerry fuckoff big creative projects that will keep them too busy to say idiotic shit or throw their weight around on actual business decisions is the kind of thing that happens all the time when founders become liabilities.

Congratulations Khoo, your plan worked: (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2013/12/11/automata-silverside?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+pa-mainsite+%28Penny+Arcade%29)

I’ve been working on Automata for about the last month or so. That should mean I have a lot done but the problem is I keep drawing and then re-drawing the first two pages.

Ample Vigour
12-12-2013, 12:45 PM
Congratulations Khoo, your plan worked: (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2013/12/11/automata-silverside?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+pa-mainsite+%28Penny+Arcade%29)

Delicious. All that's missing is the Vice-President of Special Projects title and office in Malibu

Gunther, an Otter
12-12-2013, 01:21 PM
Far more important than the hard business decisions of "Lots of fluffy ambiguous white blobs" or "Lots of sharp oppressive black lines" that Gabe must contend with: Tycho publically names Monica and Ty as the current drivers of Trenches.... and then Links to their strip search profiles rather than their personal sites because thats what side his bread is buttered on.

But thats okay cause I have a terminal brain disease where I really really want to talk about Trenches. Gwen foreshadows sabotage of the company product so as to make her life more...interesting? Its an odd parallel to Cora who sabotaged because of Moral imperatives. But I cant tell if its thematically resonant on purpose or not because of the eternal spin of the wheel of authorship.

Zef
12-12-2013, 01:34 PM
Congratulations Khoo, your plan worked: (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2013/12/11/automata-silverside?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+pa-mainsite+%28Penny+Arcade%29)

Right now I’m leaning towards option one with the snow. I want this to feel like an old movie. I want the characters to feel like actors in a black and white movie from the 40’s. I also like the Noir feel of the second one with the rain though and how gritty it feels.


I don’t know.

If you have a favorite shoot me a tweet or an email and let me know.

Is... is that what "crowdsourcing" means?

Ample Vigour
12-13-2013, 10:08 AM
Far more important than the hard business decisions of "Lots of fluffy ambiguous white blobs" or "Lots of sharp oppressive black lines" that Gabe must contend with: Tycho publically names Monica and Ty as the current drivers of Trenches.... and then Links to their strip search profiles rather than their personal sites because thats what side his bread is buttered on.

But thats okay cause I have a terminal brain disease where I really really want to talk about Trenches. Gwen foreshadows sabotage of the company product so as to make her life more...interesting? Its an odd parallel to Cora who sabotaged because of Moral imperatives. But I cant tell if its thematically resonant on purpose or not because of the eternal spin of the wheel of authorship.

Intentional or not its the closest to interesting trenches has ever been (that's not very close, btw)

Gunther, an Otter
12-13-2013, 10:46 AM
Intentional or not its the closest to interesting trenches has ever been (that's not very close, btw)

My other interests include Staring at weird stains, Number Stations and Phrenology.

estragon
12-16-2013, 12:46 PM
It's a really old joke, but I thought the most recent PA (about three wisemen) (http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2013/12/16) was funny anyway.

edit: Yup, read it again when I made the link, laughed again.

Wolfgang
12-16-2013, 01:01 PM
What PA knows and does well is apply the knowledge that swearing actually is pretty funny.

Behemoth
12-16-2013, 01:07 PM
What PA knows and does well is apply the knowledge that swearing actually is pretty funny.

Yeah, today's PA brought the funny. Good for them.

Dizzy
12-17-2013, 11:29 PM
PAX Will Now Have "Diversity Lounges", Penny Arcade Says (http://kotaku.com/pax-will-now-have-diversity-lounges-penny-arcade-say-1485455044)

Dumb. Just dumb.

estragon
12-18-2013, 12:00 AM
I don't get the snark about this. Yes, obviously all of PAX should welcome diversity.

But creating a safe-space that specifically exists to provide an opportunity for events that cater to more diverse audience members, merchants, and recruiters is a good thing, as far as I'm concerned.

Read the proposal, it sounds fine. (http://imgur.com/a/C1TUS)

Dawnswalker
12-18-2013, 12:06 AM
Yeah, it may not work out exactly as planned in the execution (they may want to invest in actual security next year), but the proposal itself sounds perfectly fine.

And most of the complaining I've seen has been either in the Tumblr "I HATE CISHET WHITES BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT AS ACCEPTING AS I AM" camp or the MRA "I'M BEING CENSORED BY BEING TOLD TO BEHAVE MYSELF DICKWOLVES DICKWOLVES DICKWOLVES" camp.

gahitsu
12-18-2013, 12:08 AM
I too think this is getting blown out of proportion quite a bit. I really doubt the intent or the suggestion was to quarantine certain groups away from the main populace or ghettoize people or whatever it is that's generally being suggested. I guess that this is the natural result of their fostering ill-will among their fans, though.

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 02:01 AM
"We at PA recognize that there have been instances where we have exhibited behavior that has come across as less than tolerant to certain segments of our fanbase. We want to assure you that we welcome gamers of all kinds and want our conventions to be places where fans can feel safe whatever their gender, race or orientation. Here are specific steps we are taking to ensure a sense of inclusion at all of our events."

Everyone on the internet: FUCCKKK YYOOOUUUUUUUUUU

http://i.imgur.com/s1YZee6.png

Kylie
12-18-2013, 07:26 AM
It is certainly EASIER to request that a portion of the population segregate themselves than to actually create a "safe and welcoming environment for all gamers." Now if people complain about harassment or inequitable treatment, they can just say "Diversity Lounge."

"biological sex" fuck yoooooooou just say sex.

I guess my complaint about this is that it's an acknowledgment that there are one, maybe two problems. It just doesn't address either problem.

If the acknowledgment is that the installed user base is nasty and hostile in greater-than-average quantities, the room says "our con is a safe space for everyone, and if it's not a safe space we have a room for you." It doesn't actually make hypothetical me want to be in anything but a room, which would suck if my cis/het/safe-feeling pals are elsewhere. That said, I don't think that's actually what this is, though the announcement does mention "trying to create a safe/tolerant space at PAX" so I guess at least they're acknowledging that it isn't one.

Alternately, it's an acknowledgment that the industry is nasty and hostile in a greater-than-average way, and this room says "this is like that one ride at Epcot where we teach you to eat healthy, while still selling you ice cream and potato chips outside in the rest of the park." I think this is actually what this is.

Whatever they meant to address, this doesn't do it. I don't think their intentions are evil. I think it's damage control for stuff they've done and said. I don't think it's good or useful damage control. Let's say I were a hypothetical Christine Love, One-Person-Queer-Game-Studio. I can't promote in diversity lounge, because I'd also have to promote on show floor. Alternately, if I'm EA, why SHOULD I promote in Diversity Lounge? The DL takes all this inclusion and queerness and non-whiteness and puts them someplace that they can be easily ignored.

Again, stressing that I don't think they want to hurt people with this move. It's a move that shows that they're willing to change, but not in a way that could make a difference, but also could make the average straight white dude feel uncomfortable.

TL;DR it doesn't make the space safer, and doesn't meaningfully promote diversity unless you're already part of the "diversity crowd". It's an interesting gesture, and a halting step in a better direction. But it's not actually useful itself, it just tries to say "hey, look guys, we're not jerks".

Dizzy
12-18-2013, 07:33 AM
Setting up these diversity zones is an act of tokenism on the part of business owners whose history with diversity issues is awful.

Also: what Kylie said.

estragon
12-18-2013, 07:33 AM
It is certainly EASIER to request that a portion of the population segregate themselves than to actually create a "safe and welcoming environment for all gamers." Now if people complain about harassment or inequitable treatment, they can just say "Diversity Lounge."

No one is requesting any segregation. They are creating a space for good things to happen. This doesn't mean it's free reign discrimination outside of that room.

I dunno, I'm not the target audience for PAX anymore, and I don't do cons. But I just imagine that if I were 14 again and at a comic con, I would have been really excited to see a room that was designated for LGBTQ friendly stuff. This doesn't mean it can't also exist elsewhere, it only means it definitely exists there.

Safe spaces are good, hopefully it can be a productive first step.

Dizzy
12-18-2013, 07:37 AM
They should make the whole expo one big diversity lounge.

estragon
12-18-2013, 07:40 AM
Literally the first (okay second) thing I said.

pence
12-18-2013, 07:52 AM
At this point I'm not sure what some critics would consider an appropriate response from PAX, aside from the complete dissolution of Penny Arcade and PAX. It's a shame, my experiences at PAX have always been positive, even though I know that's not the case for everyone. The diversity lounges, on balance, are a positive step.

BEAT
12-18-2013, 08:35 AM
my experiences at PAX have always been positive, even though I know that's not the case for everyone.
I would hope the vast majority of people's PAX experience is completely racist/sexist/douchetool-in-general free.

Reading the proposal, I gotta say I'm with Pence on this one. It doesn't sound like a "GO HERE IF YOU'RE DIFFERENT" thing. It seems like a genuine attempt to draw attention to very real problems in the gaming community.

I assume that games made by people who aren't white straight dudes will still be shown off on the main show floor, and I would hope that people could report harassment to ANY enforcer, not just the ones in that area, but the idea of an area dedicated to telling people what's what strikes me as a step in the right direction.

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 09:55 AM
Kylie, going by your post, I have no idea what actions you think they could take that would satisfy you. Are there any? It's known that you don't like PA, or PAX or any of the people that operate it. I've never been to PAX but I can't imagine a lot of harassment goes on there. Does a lot of hate activity go down there? More so than any other large public event like this?

"Diversity Lounge" is a dumb, saccharine name, for sure, and yes there should be an actual security presence rather than volunteers. But it seems like the people who have problems with this are only picking up on and making fun of the surface elements and not bothering to actually think about what they're trying to do.

This post just outed me as a homophobe and KKK member I'm sure

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 10:00 AM
This is like the opposite of the feminism threads where no amount of arguing will ever make make anyone absorb anything, because

"I HATE CISHET WHITES BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT AS ACCEPTING AS I AM"

Dizzy
12-18-2013, 11:02 AM
Misidentifying someone's argumentative points and then painting them as stubborn and recalcitrant does nothing to move the conversation forward.

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 11:16 AM
"Misidentifying" how? Also, being stubborn and recalcitrant doesn't move the conversation forward either. It would be helpful if the people against what PAX is doing could offer up some alternative solutions*, other than "the complete dissolution of Penny Arcade and PAX", which is what it seems like its detractors are skirting around the edges of suggesting.

*Like I said, I think the name Diversity Lounge is saccharine and I can kind of see where Kylie is getting her Epcot analogy (which is why I said it seems like she's picking at surface elements). But aside from hiring real security employees and turning away every cis white man at the door on the basis of looking like they might be bro-ish, what can you do, really? Demand that only a certain kind of game be exhibited, that displays the "right" kind of cultural sensitivity? Make attendees pass a written exam showing they understand their privilege? That sounds like I'm being sarcastic but I'm trying to figure out what would make the event's detractors happy, and I keep coming up with "nothing".

Destil
12-18-2013, 11:20 AM
Engaging their community more? I mean, the sad thing is the PA guys actually do try, it's more that they're bad at it and often don't understand the problem (Jerry not actually knowing what Transgender meant before going on that one twitter rant) than anything overly malicious.

Dizzy
12-18-2013, 11:24 AM
I wouldn't assign malicious intent to their motives either. It's probably more them being tone-deaf in their approach and solutions.

Mr. J
12-18-2013, 11:25 AM
Looking at the proposal it looks like more of an outreach program than a designated area to keep all the "diverse people." They are offering educational programs about diversity in gaming, specially trained staff to handle issues that arise anywhere and floor space for groups working to better the industry. It seems like a place that you would stop by for an hour or so and see a few booths/attend a presentation.

It looks like an honest effort to make PAX a better place.

kaisel
12-18-2013, 11:40 AM
The only iffy thing for me, and it's only because it's ambiguous (ie, does the proposal cover the whole con, or just the Diversity Hub) is that it reads like not all enforcers will have Safe Zone training.

I do see some of Kylie's points, it will be difficult for some indie developers to choose where to demo their games, and I can see some games that the more toxic elements should see won't because they'll be in a place that the'll be able to avoid. The separate panel track is another small issue for me, by competing with some of the bigger panels (big game announcements, things of that nature), it makes it more difficult to be able to attend those panels.

It's a step in the right direction, and I think most of the pessimism is based on PA's previous track record, rather than the actual proposal.

McClain
12-18-2013, 12:05 PM
yeah this sounds like a good step. I'm especially curious what all panels will be added and what the reactions will be like.

The whole con SHOULD be a safe space, and I don't get the impression this is mean to be the only safe place in the con but rather a specific place to talk about theses issues.

breakman
12-18-2013, 12:18 PM
"We at PA recognize that there have been instances where we have exhibited behavior that has come across as less than tolerant to certain segments of our fanbase."

That is both too carefully worded to be a satisfactory expression of regret, and not carefully worded enough to be a thing they would actually say.

I have had no bad experiences at PAX East, but then, I am basically their exact target demographic. I just think that they are pretty much bad people, and I don't want anything to do with anything they're involved in. If PAX East did not also act as a TT meetup, that would be a lot easier.

Adam
12-18-2013, 01:00 PM
Safe Space will slowly expand until it encompasses the entire con.
I promise this will happen or I will give up all rights to ever attend PAX.

Zef
12-18-2013, 01:23 PM
Safe Space will slowly expand until it encompasses the entire con.

Or it could happen the other way.

http://i.imgur.com/dCIp7.gif

Alixsar
12-18-2013, 02:15 PM
The first step towards fixing a problem is identifying that there is one. PA has done that. But the answer isn't "Hey let's block off a part of the con and hand out literature/hold panels on how to not be shitty", you know? It just feels like it's not enough. I don't know what would be better, though.

I think part of it is that this is an entirely optional area, you know? The people who will go there are those who are already interested in these kinds of issues, and the people who SHOULD go there won't go because they're pricks and will already be out on the floor at the other parts of the show. But then what's the alternative? Forcing people to go there also seems like bullshit.

The whole thing just seems like they're grasping at straws, but truth be told, I don't know what I'd do in their place. Status quo is bad and this change is probably not enough. What do you do?

poetfox
12-18-2013, 02:28 PM
They wrote a press release about promoting diversity that clearly nobody with any diversity looked at, or someone would have caught the fairly insulting language in there that Kylie pointed out.

That makes it feel like purely and completely a business move. And while a part of me is happy that business needs to listen to that sort of thing now, at least a little, it still makes it clear that, in the end, they don't care. They have figureheads that don't care about this stuff. They just want people to shut up and give them more money.

Good on them for trying something. But I know what I want is some actual emotion from them that they actually believe they have fucked up in the past and want to improve. I mean, look at the wording in that release. They start by saying "hey, we already do this, buuuuttttttt I guess we'll do more? And surely all our staff doesn't need to get this stuff." And I had a hard time swallowing any apology Mike has posted about any of his stuff because it is just so damn defensive most of the time. He makes it so clear he was injured. He makes it clear he thinks he's the victim.

People make mistakes. But good people learn from their mistakes and improve themselves. Penny Arcade makes mistakes and then tries to hide them so they're not mistakes again in the future.

Again, good on them for doing SOMETHING. At least they're not completely deaf. But they haven't fixed things yet.

Dizzy
12-18-2013, 02:54 PM
It doesn't help Mike Krahulik doesn't seem the least bit remorseful with his past actions. A sincere public apology would be in order, if it hasn't been made yet.

Kylie
12-18-2013, 02:58 PM
The first step towards fixing a problem is identifying that there is one. PA has done that. But the answer isn't "Hey let's block off a part of the con and hand out literature/hold panels on how to not be shitty", you know? It just feels like it's not enough. I don't know what would be better, though.

I think part of it is that this is an entirely optional area, you know? The people who will go there are those who are already interested in these kinds of issues, and the people who SHOULD go there won't go because they're pricks and will already be out on the floor at the other parts of the show. But then what's the alternative? Forcing people to go there also seems like bullshit.

The whole thing just seems like they're grasping at straws, but truth be told, I don't know what I'd do in their place. Status quo is bad and this change is probably not enough. What do you do?

It's just as Destil said; you engage the community.

Do things that help the community, without first doing something to harm it. And do things that show you're not embarrassed to help the community.

A friend of mine said something really good; it's that safe spaces are a process, not a location. When PAX began, the PA dudes wanted to create a safe space for gamers. But gamers are not themselves a marginalized community; if you take a bunch of majority-white-male-cis-het gamers, all you need in order to make a physically safe space are 1) nintendo tapes, and 2) security, because the people inside are as dangerous to each other as anyone outside is to them.

I think this set the standards for "safe space" in a weird place, where a "safe space" grows to mean distractions and no immediate threat of violence. But when you take an extra step and bring in gamers who are historically marginalized, it takes more work. Because then there IS discrimination and negativity. If enforcers kicked out everyone at a game that used sexual and racial slurs as trash talk, there'd be no PAX. The beloved traditions of the hegemonic white male gamer make the space unsafe and unwelcoming for others. This means that making a safe space for gamers becomes a process of engaging gamers and changing behavior and attitudes within the community.

So what do you do? You can let the hegemonic nerds do their thing, and create a Learning Corner that the hegemonic nerds can ignore, which makes almost no difference but looks good on paper. But here's the thing - Mike and Jerry have global reach and adoring fans. If they say stuff as Mike and Jerry outside of PAX, it engages everyone at PAX. But to do that, you have to say it before causing damage. That's the process of creating a safe space - you identify the problems in the community that require it, and then you talk about them, so that people at LEAST know not to bring them into the space.

They are unlikely to do this, is the problem. To speak out - for example "hey, lay off this Mighty Number Nine lady, that's just rude" - would make PA the enemy of the hegemonic gamer. They are reluctant to engage the people who are in a position to prevent hostility.

I've never suggested PAX should be destroyed or that PA should be ended. I have no desire to see either of these happen. And plenty of people have suggested ways to engage the community - I have, as have others. The Lounge doesn't mean they hate anybody. But I'm not convinced it's a good step.

It's a wasteful step that looks in a good direction, I think. I suspect it will be poorly attended by anyone who should actually be there. I suspect it will cost money without bringing money, and be axed. I'd love to be proven wrong.

Diversity issues are confronted by putting them out in the open, where they can't be ignored. That's not what this is, and so I think it's poor advocacy. But it's very convenient advocacy if you have no interest in actually affecting the status quo, which might make someone uncomfortable.

poetfox
12-18-2013, 03:25 PM
Khoo responds (http://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/185642/some-thoughts-on-the-diversity-hub-and-lounge) by promising that it'll be in a high traffic area and that they talked to a gay guy, so it's cool.

estragon
12-18-2013, 03:47 PM
That reading seems disingenuous to me. Judge for yourself:

I just wanted to quickly address some of the questions I've been getting about the Diversity Hub and Lounge and the thinking behind it.

A few months ago when the idea was bouncing around, we reached out to a friend of ours, Benjamin Williams (co-founder of Queer Geek and GaymerX) to help with the concept and execution. Together, we've been working to create something that both celebrates and raises awareness of different, underrepresented gamer groups while also encouraging attendees to discover where all the different diversity-driven content at the show can be found. (Although we've always had this content at the show, we wanted to give people an easier means of finding it)

Based on feedback from previous shows, it's clear that having a diverse lineup of both content and exhibitors is something folks want, but the reality is that some of those places might not be able to afford a booth. So we carved out a large room at the show in a high traffic area that highlighted some of these great organizations and offered tables to them for free.

Some of the criticism I've been hearing is that this isolates these groups and tries to shine an uncomfortable spotlight on them. Although I can see how some might see it that way, the goal is to actually drive awareness and even celebrate the groups and their goals. We felt that by unifying the groups, it created a really strong, positive focal point that would attract people to it, similar to how the Indie Megabooth does on the show floor. That said, if it doesn't work out the way we'd like it to or if it doesn't have the right vibe, we're flexible enough to do things differently for future shows.

The fact is that this discussion is already ensuring that the area won't be ignored, which I think is great. I really do hope people understand that we are constantly trying to make the show better.

I also want to make clear that we have always strived to make the ENTIRETY of PAX a safe place via our policies, our content, and our dedication to our attendees. The Diversity Hub and Lounge isn't meant to say the rest of the show isn't diverse or safe - it's meant to highlight, educate and celebrate. Thanks all!

We'll (or you'll--I don't do conventions) see how it works out in practice, but giving free space to GLBTQ groups still sounds like a positive to me. Maybe it would be better if they were dispersed among other booths, but honestly I'm not sure. I think it's a net positive for this to exist, and having all those resources in one place seems like a potential advantage for networking and educational purposes.

waterpot
12-18-2013, 04:05 PM
https://24.media.tumblr.com/dbd82304b5581bd22763d2e28d53e765/tumblr_mxzq5veEdC1qkinreo1_r1_500.png

Kylie
12-18-2013, 04:05 PM
That reading seems disingenuous to me. Judge for yourself:



We'll (or you'll--I don't do conventions) see how it works out in practice, but giving free space to GLBTQ groups still sounds like a positive to me. Maybe it would be better if they were dispersed among other booths, but honestly I'm not sure. I think it's a net positive for this to exist, and having all those resources in one place seems like a potential advantage for networking and educational purposes.

I don't think anyone disagrees. I just think we have differing understandings of the word "potential" there.

waterpot
12-18-2013, 04:06 PM
oh double post, sorry

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 08:47 PM
Khoo responds (http://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/185642/some-thoughts-on-the-diversity-hub-and-lounge) by promising that it'll be in a high traffic area and that they talked to a gay guy, so it's cool.

This dismissive attitude is really not the way to go about discussing the concept.

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 09:09 PM
But for actual talk about PA todays was fucking funny. It made me chuckle out loud a little bit which never happens. "Yeah, it's about a half hour." Fuck me. I know Madhair gots my back on this.

ArugulaZ
12-18-2013, 10:29 PM
I got into an argument with someone about this earlier today. I thought a diversity room was dumb and unnecessary; he thought it was an insulting, transparent gesture and didn't go far enough. It got ugly in a hurry.

I'm ambivalent about this. I personally feel that a convention like PAX should be a celebration of video games, and that a diversity workshop distracts from that purpose. (I certainly don't remember such a thing at E3 1999, and I wouldn't have used it even if one had been there. That's time I could be spending with the brand spankin' new Dreamcast!) I'd also like to think that adults would treat each other with mutual respect in spite of their differences... but acknowledge that this isn't always how things work. Do we really need to remind people to practice good sportsmanship, to refrain from bullying others, and to keep their lesser emotions in check? Maybe, and that's just kind of sad.

Also, it's kind of weird that people expect Penny Arcade to lead the charge in sensitivity training for gamers. You guys are familiar with the comic, right? The comic that's been crass and offensive for nearly a decade and a half? I'm not sure why people expect the editors to be positive role models, and get so incensed when they discover otherwise.

I dread getting into discussions like this, because I'm almost sure to get hostile reactions. Yet here I am! Like a moth to a flame, I am.

estragon
12-18-2013, 10:40 PM
But for actual talk about PA todays was fucking funny. It made me chuckle out loud a little bit which never happens. "Yeah, it's about a half hour." Fuck me. I know Madhair gots my back on this.

Based on this and your comments about how swearing makes things funny from the wisemen comic, we enjoy PA in exactly the opposite way. Neither of those things (swearing in 3rd panel "fuck" of wisemen, half an hour in this) made me laugh. I basically never think the 3rd panel of PA is funny. When a PA strip is funny, I always laugh at the 1st and 2nd panels, and I experience the third panel as a kind of cooldown that gently concludes the strip.

I think they kind of suck at punchlines, but their setup is funnier than most other comic's punchlines, so it works for me.

Destil
12-18-2013, 10:47 PM
I'm ambivalent about this. I personally feel that a convention like PAX should be a celebration of video games, and that a diversity workshop distracts from that purpose.

Why wouldn't a diverse group of gamers celebrate that diverse as well as whatever else they like about games? Lots of people care not just about games but their impact on culture and whatnot. It's not really distracting from the gaming bits of the con, it's part of it (assuming they pull if off well).

Wolfgang
12-18-2013, 10:48 PM
I basically never think the 3rd panel of PA is funny. When a PA strip is funny, I always laugh at the 1st and 2nd panels, and I experience the third panel as a kind of cooldown that gently concludes the strip.

We are not so different, you and I. It's basically the same thing for me, too, except they've been doing some decent 3rd panels lately. The most recent, for example - I love visually absurd humor so Tycho popping up from random places and peeking does it for me big time. But yes, also the revelation that thirty minutes is roughly analogous to a half hour.

Explainin' the joke awaaayyyy ♬

Ample Vigour
12-18-2013, 10:52 PM
I've never suggested PAX should be destroyed or that PA should be ended

that s too bad because watching the yawning earth swallow them ans all their works would be Ample Vigour's Chuckle of the Week *a giant chattering teeth trophy lowers from the ceiling*

Aylor
12-18-2013, 11:36 PM
My thoughts on the whole thing are that it's ultimately well intentioned and I do like that the under-representation of minorities in games is going to be discussed and people will be educated on that, I think that's a worthwhile debate. BUT (big fat jiggly but) I am really against the concept of a "diverse zone" in the event itself, like many have said before me, this could have easily been mixed with the rest of the convention or even turned into a theme with no specific zoning required, just make all of PAX diverse while still having booths dedicated to spreading useful information without having to put up any boundaries between anyone.

Let me elaborate: a lot of people in so-called minorities, including myself, loathe being presented with that status card, especially when it's presented in the form of a "safe zone", cause as sugar coated as they want to make it, it still sends the message: "you're different, you're not normal, but don't worry, we made a zone where you can be abnormal along with all the abnormal people who are not like the rest of us".

The defense that it's to "celebrate diversity" doesn't really make it any less dividing, I don't think a lot of people understand that "equality" means literally that, I don't want to have a designated zone to tell others of how "diverse" and "different" I am, cause that's honestly really fucking depressing, even more so if you're getting disingenuously getting patted in the back, I would honestly feel patronized.

That doesn't mean I want to be harassed or ignored, I would just want to hang out with EVERYONE, not afraid of being me or hiding anything about myself but certainly not making a spectacle of myself for being different, because in reality that just increases the gap between you and other people. Diversity for me is acknowledging everyone is different and being cool with it without having to put it in an embarrassing pedestal.

I hope I explained myself clearly. Again these are just my thoughts and how I read the whole thing, maybe my outlook will change when I actually see how it goes.

ajr82
12-18-2013, 11:51 PM
Also, it's kind of weird that people expect Penny Arcade to lead the charge in sensitivity training for gamers. You guys are familiar with the comic, right? The comic that's been crass and offensive for nearly a decade and a half? I'm not sure why people expect the editors to be positive role models, and get so incensed when they discover otherwise.

Because by putting on the biggest fan-focused gaming conventions that exist, they've set themselves up as leaders of a community. This means that their behaviour is hugely influential on how their community acts and how it is perceived.

They have a huge microphone and a veritable army of people who take what they say seriously, and they keep using it to be shitty, intentionally or otherwise, to people with substantially less power than them.

Googleshng
12-19-2013, 05:02 AM
Setting up these diversity zones is an act of tokenism on the part of business owners whose history with diversity issues is awful.

Also: what Kylie said.

OK, just so we're all on the same page... is anyone operating under the assumption that the idea here is "We have set aside this special area for 'diverse' people to go and not get harassed?"

Because my understanding is that the idea is more or less the opposite. "We have created these lairs in high traffic areas for PR folks to lie in wait to lunge out and preach about diversity to jerks."

¡HarlequinPanic!
12-19-2013, 07:18 AM
This dismissive attitude is really not the way to go about discussing the concept.

Yeah, Benjamin Williams is a very good co-creator/advisor on this sort of thing, and the creator of one of the alternative cons that everyone says you should be going to.

Diversity spaces *sound as* clumsy as anything else they've done, but I also think its encouraging. I really think one of the big two at PA should publicly make a statement about how awesome these spaces are or something; these kinds of actions NEED to be felt coming from the top down.

However I also think there will be a fair share of assholes just outside of it doing inappropriate stuff like taunting and hanging hateful signs or something. The enforcers around it are going to have their work cut out for them.

Regardless, I don't know I'm not as cynical about this as the world wants me to be I think and that makes me feel really funny D:

Büge
12-19-2013, 07:35 AM
My thoughts on the whole thing

I agree. Their intentions might be noble and the outcome might be good, but right now this whole thing is making me feel icky.

Zef
12-19-2013, 07:44 AM
I agree with Aylor so hard on almost everything, but a thought occurs...

Right here and right now, I think this "diversity zones" idea exists simultaneously in a state of "token gesture to shut up the critics" and "they're honestly trying, but have no idea how to go about it." The former is more attractive because it throws more fuel to the fire, and it also hews closer to PA's past behavior... but we don't really know what's going through those guys' heads, do we?

As disillusioned as I became with PA since the dickwolves thing, and as much as I want to cry foul for what looks for all the world like a further act of segregation, I'll just shut up and give them the benefit of the doubt. PAX East will be the test run for this project, so it will prove their intentions and whether they've turned a new leaf or not.

pence
12-19-2013, 08:03 AM
However I also think there will be a fair share of assholes just outside of it doing inappropriate stuff like taunting and hanging hateful signs or something. The enforcers around it are going to have their work cut out for them.

I'm not saying this kind of stuff could never happen at PAX, but something that blatant would end quickly, with the offenders immediately taken outside and their badges revoked.

MCBanjoMike
12-19-2013, 08:09 AM
However I also think there will be a fair share of assholes just outside of it doing inappropriate stuff like taunting and hanging hateful signs or something. The enforcers around it are going to have their work cut out for them.

They cannot allow that to happen, and if anyone starts to pull shit like that it needs to get shut down within seconds. PA have had a lot of bad publicity in the last few months/years and having their "progressive" idea corrupted and used to harass people would destroy their image. Hell, it might even destroy PAX, if people start to associate the event with "the place you go if you want to hate on minorities".

As disillusioned as I became with PA since the dickwolves thing, and as much as I want to cry foul for what looks for all the world like a further act of segregation, I'll just shut up and give them the benefit of the doubt. PAX East will be the test run for this project, so it will prove their intentions and whether they've turned a new leaf or not.

Penny-Arcade aren't stupid enough to do something like this with the goal of being inflammatory. They can see that they've dug themselves into a hole and they're trying to find a way to get out of it. I'm not sure that separate "spaces" was the right way to go about doing this, but at least they're rolling diversity into the official message of PAX and paying lip service to it. The old PAX rule of "don't be an asshole" clearly didn't hold much water, especially considering that the convention mascot acts like one on a regular basis. Putting the word out that everyone should be welcome and that harassment won't be tolerated is a small, but important first step for them to take with PAX. Diversity Spaces are probably too small of a step, though, so I hope that they'll revise and expand the idea before the next convention happens.

¡HarlequinPanic!
12-19-2013, 08:24 AM
Well I'm glad they keep such a stringent enforcement on quelling dumb hate shit like that.

poetfox
12-19-2013, 09:13 AM
When their response to cries of tokenism and making people othered is to bring mention a token dude, no matter how qualified, and then say "we hear what you're saying but we know better and will make no attempts to change based on feedback from the very people we are trying to please," I feel justified in being a little cynical as to their true intentions here.

Sorry about that! Sorry about a business move not placating me when I have felt betrayed multiple times. Apologies. Am I being emotional and dumb? Eh, probably. I truly hope that this, or SOMETHING, fixes the problems PAX has, because I want it to be a cool place again. Feel free to dismiss me as you need. Carry on.

¡HarlequinPanic!
12-19-2013, 09:36 AM
Sorry poetfox, I wasn't trying to invalidate or undermine you. I just think the guy they have happens to be an good person to have on the job for this and the statement admittingly made me think about it differently (first kneejerk was rather negative).

Whether or not this proves to be little more than a business move remains to be seen. They still have a ways to go.

Falselogic
12-19-2013, 09:45 AM
Nah, fuck those guys and fuck their convention. They've pissed away any goodwill I might have had for them and I'm not going to carry water for them on this in the hopes it turns out great.

When and if I ever get the time off to attend a PAX event I think I'll save money and not buy a ticket and just hang with TT people when their not at the convention and sight see when they are.

I hear Seattle and Boston have better things to see than video games anyway...

poetfox
12-19-2013, 09:47 AM
You don't need to apologize, BrianB. Nobody here is really doing anything mean towards me or anything. I just feel really frustrated about the whole mess at this moment in time and am probably flailing about like an idiot. I am worried people will go "oh, this is okay then" and then this kind of shit will happen again and people will think nothing of it, because they're doing something, right? Even if it's not solving anything, they're doing something, so surely they're not bad! I dunno. I don't even really think anyone here would actually do that. But I feel like this whole thing has like... power behind it for once, and this has the potential to dismantle that power without fixing anything. It worries me. Ramble ramble ramble.

I still really appreciate the apology regardless, though. Thank you.

ArugulaZ
12-19-2013, 10:01 AM
Why wouldn't a diverse group of gamers celebrate that diverse as well as whatever else they like about games? Lots of people care not just about games but their impact on culture and whatnot. It's not really distracting from the gaming bits of the con, it's part of it (assuming they pull if off well).

That remains to be seen. I'm not sure people will actively seek out a centralized diversity room, but if you spread some kiosks throughout the convention, and make them fun and interesting, that information is more likely to make an impact. At the retro booth, set up a Fairchild Channel F, and next to it put a monitor running video clips of its creator, Jerry Lawson. Let people know that hey, this was the first game console with programmable cartridges, and the guy who came up with this hugely important concept was African-American. Somewhere else, put up a GORF arcade machine and set a display next to it running an interview with its creator, transgender programmer Jaymie Fay Fenton. You get the idea.

Anyway, my point is that there are ways to inform gamers while making the experience engaging and organic. I don't think a diversity room is the way to go.

Dizzy
12-19-2013, 10:05 AM
I think the next PAX convention will be the first one I'll visit in my life. I plan on reporting my empirical findings of these diversity arenas.

periodical
12-19-2013, 10:45 AM
Diversity thunderdome?

Shitposting my way to 500 posts, like a boss.

Behemoth
12-19-2013, 10:49 AM
Shitposting my way to 500 posts, like a boss.

You've learned the ways, one-fourth of a person.

Ghost from Spelunker
12-19-2013, 07:23 PM
I'd like to know of any other examples of other conventions doing something similar to the Diversity Lounge and how those turned out.

Wolfgang
12-19-2013, 07:54 PM
I'd like to know of any other examples of other conventions doing something similar to the Diversity Lounge and how those turned out.

PA are the only people required because Jerry and Mike are influential, and nobody else in the industry is. Nobody else in the video game industry has ever expressed negative opinions of nonwhite cishet people or created material that is objectionable/exploitative

never

pence
12-23-2013, 09:25 AM
Holy crap it's the We're Right Awards, back for the first time in six years (ten years, if you don't count the one that was just Portal (http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2007/12/28) in 2007):

http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2013/12/23

will
12-23-2013, 10:01 AM
PA are the only people required because Jerry and Mike are influential, and nobody else in the industry is. Nobody else in the video game industry has ever expressed negative opinions of nonwhite cishet people or created material that is objectionable/exploitative

never

What do you find so offensive about the idea that these guys shouldn't use their position to advocate in favor of harassment?

madhair60
12-23-2013, 02:39 PM
What do you find so offensive about the idea that these guys shouldn't use their position to advocate in favor of harassment?

I know I shouldn't get involved in this stupid horseshit (it's Christmas!) but wow at this strawman.

Wolfgang
12-23-2013, 03:03 PM
I know I shouldn't get involved in this stupid horseshit (it's Christmas!) but wow at this strawman.

seriously

Fortunately I made my point previously so I can sit back and enjoy the return of the grand tradition

will
12-23-2013, 04:13 PM
seriously

Fortunately I made my point previously so I can sit back and enjoy the return of the grand tradition

Yeah, a bit extreme, my bad. It's just that you've been posting things like "you must want them to just disappear" and "why are you criticizing them when there are other people who are also bad", and then ignoring the posts addressing your points. These seem like pretty extreme strawmans! What's the deal? Like, what's your position here?

O..O~
12-24-2013, 10:08 AM
I'm kind of flabbergasted that Jerry could be so lazy with writing the comic now that he seriously made a joke that is being made by at least one person in every theater that has a trailer of pompeii being shown right now.

madhair60
12-24-2013, 10:44 AM
I'm kind of flabbergasted that Jerry could be so lazy with writing the comic now that he seriously made a joke that is being made by at least one person in every theater that has a trailer of pompeii being shown right now.

New to me and I dug it.

TK Flash
12-24-2013, 05:04 PM
For me it was "Penny Arcade Comics I Didn't Get #23904823947"

Dizzy
12-24-2013, 06:56 PM
Their comics are more advertorial than editorial, so who even cares.

waterpot
12-29-2013, 11:08 PM
the webcomic overlook did s nice review of penny arcade 2013 strips (http://webcomicoverlook.com/2013/12/29/the-webcomic-overlook-234-penny-arcade-2013/)

Wolfgang
12-30-2013, 12:26 AM
the webcomic overlook did s nice review of penny arcade 2013 strips (http://webcomicoverlook.com/2013/12/29/the-webcomic-overlook-234-penny-arcade-2013/)

This guy gave Girl Genius a five star review, and its art makes my entire head bleed. Not blood coming out of my eyes or ears but every pore oozing blood, from the base of my skull to the top of my crown. Safe to ignore his opinions.

He also gives xkcd one star more, so he is obviously a mental patient.

madhair60
12-30-2013, 07:32 AM
the webcomic overlook did s nice review of penny arcade 2013 strips (http://webcomicoverlook.com/2013/12/29/the-webcomic-overlook-234-penny-arcade-2013/)

Glad I'm not that guy

Edit:

I love Questionable Content

Glad I'm not that guy

waterpot
12-30-2013, 08:09 AM
Glad I'm not that guy

Edit:

A guest writter did the Qc review,
And the PA review said the same things that this thread
Has said before

Behemoth
12-30-2013, 08:57 AM
And the PA review said the same things that this thread
Has said before

Yes, waterpot, but surely you've realized by now that TT is never more happy than when it's disagreeing with something, even (especially?) if it's something that it's previously agreed with.

Nodal
12-30-2013, 09:31 AM
Or even that there are two camps in this very thread.

madhair60
12-30-2013, 09:42 AM
Ah, I'm mistaken; a different person wrote the Questionable Content article. I still disagree with the Penny Arcade write-up, which seems to have been written by someone who portrays themselves as a Lucha Libre wrestler, which is both awesome and hilariously crap.

And yeah, the stuff said in the review is very similar to what has been said here; I disagreed then, too. I would explain further but I don't have the energy and it feels like a waste of time, you know?

Edit: I guess one thing I do find especially interesting is how the review refers to one linked comic as "terrible", yet when I click on it and read it, I laugh happily with real enjoyment. And then the whole bit about "forced attempts at being edgy", clicking on the first example of which reveals a very funny Penny Arcade comic. A normal and quite tame Penny Arcade comic. I just do not seem to be on this guy's wavelength. And then I realised I don't care about his review, as it bears seemingly no relation to the actual content of the comic under scrutiny, and when it does I just don't agree anyway. The chap seems to inherently dislike the elements I enjoy (i.e. the loose art, the lack of "on-model" poses and such). So cool, I will continue to read Penny Arcade and probably enjoy it, webcomic reviewing man will continue to do what he does.

Behemoth
12-30-2013, 10:14 AM
Or even that there are two camps in this very thread.

No, ur wrong.

estragon
12-30-2013, 11:13 AM
re: that review

I'm glad that someone else was noticing the Family Circus-ification of PA:

What is becoming more and more apparent are that Gabe and Tycho are becoming cranky old men. In modern day version of the newspaper comic Nancy, the character of Fritzi Ritz often reminisces about music and entertainment of the 1940′s. She’s clearly acting as a mouthpiece of the author Guy Gilchrist, since a young 20 year-old woman shouldn’t be dreaming of the good old days of Duke Ellington or whatever. It’s kinda weird that Penny Arcade is sorta becoming that kind of comic, only with more profanity. What’s with kids these days and all their Facebooks? Hey, remember the good old days of SNES? Interestingly, Holkins and Krahulik seem to be pretty unapologetically aware of their crankiness. And kindly get off their lawns, you damn kids.

I still read it, and I still laugh, but this is a definite trend. And it's slowly sucking the humor out of the strip.

Dizzy
12-30-2013, 11:57 AM
Civilization is crumbling...

I never understood how they had any appeal beyond providing snarky video game humor.

madhair60
12-30-2013, 12:38 PM
'Cos of the jokes is funny!

See also: I never understood how toasters were appealing besides toasting things?

Dizzy
12-30-2013, 01:32 PM
But people were treating this toaster as if it could double as an Xbox 360. If you catch my drift (or my crumbs).

Wolfgang
12-30-2013, 02:50 PM
'Cos of the jokes is funny!

i know right

Re: Family Circusification: who figured that a writer might write about what they know, and that having a family would give a person a new set of knowledge to write about. Also, PA's audience is aging along with its creators, and going through similar, relatable experiences. I don't have kids but the strips that are about their kids are still pretty good (I thought the Lost Lands arc was funny and cute without losing that signature PA flavor). If you disagree with me: ok.

estragon
12-30-2013, 02:59 PM
I'm okay with strips about kids/parenthood that are funny or good. I am also older now, and I appreciate good material on those topics. I just think the PA guys have a tendency to be saccharine but not very funny on those topics.

I think it should be clear that I'm not a Penny Arcade hater. I am actually literally listening to an episode of their podcast right now. I just think they're still struggling to do good strips on those topics.

Behemoth
12-30-2013, 03:41 PM
If you disagree with me: ok.

How dare you.

Wolfgang
01-01-2014, 12:53 AM
I will assume that in the most recent strip, since the strip is about buying a lamp, rather that The Latest Video Game, PA has lost its edge

Sarcasmorator
01-01-2014, 01:13 AM
I just think the PA guys have a tendency to be saccharine but not very funny on those topics.

This is what having kids does to your brain. It's like where there once was a hard frozen lump of black glass in your soul there is now just a pile of warm mush.

TK Flash
01-01-2014, 02:37 AM
I will assume that in the most recent strip, since the strip is about buying a lamp, rather that The Latest Video Game, PA has lost its edge

That comic sucks

Gunther, an Otter
01-01-2014, 11:57 AM
I am super disappointed we dont get to see the Lamp. Come on Penny Arcade this is a VISUAL MEDIUM. SHOW DONT TELL.

estragon
01-01-2014, 12:31 PM
I will assume that in the most recent strip, since the strip is about buying a lamp, rather that The Latest Video Game, PA has lost its edge

No, that was a good strip. Very funny, 1 laugh per panel for a perfect maximum score of 3/3 laughs.

I don't want everything to be about videogames. I just want them to be funny. The problem isn't content, it's execution.

Returning to this, for example:

This is what having kids does to your brain. It's like where there once was a hard frozen lump of black glass in your soul there is now just a pile of warm mush.

Louie CK and Family Circus both do comedic material on children and families. I just think PA is too far down the Family Circus side of the spectrum when they approach that material. Obviously not everyone can be Louie CK, but they need to step up their family material game. It is possible to do good comedy on that material.

That doesn't mean it has to be dark or full of swears whatever, either. Someone else who does funny family/children material is Bill Cosby, for example. He clearly doesn't have a pile of warm mush, and he's not "edgy" or whatever, but he knows how to tell a good family joke.

Sheana
01-01-2014, 04:50 PM
Gabe's "resolution". (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2014/01/01/resolutions) Thoughts?

shivam
01-01-2014, 04:54 PM
i wish him luck, and i really really hope he means what he says, and that even one of his readers sees that and is impacted to change.

Egarwaen
01-01-2014, 04:57 PM
Gabe's "resolution". (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2014/01/01/resolutions) Thoughts?

I don't care what he says, I care what he does.

BeeZee
01-01-2014, 05:18 PM
I don't care what he says, I care what he does.

Aren't "things he said" what caused all the backlash?

Egarwaen
01-01-2014, 05:40 PM
Aren't "things he said" what caused all the backlash?

"Saying more stupid things" would be something he could do, yes, though not one that would have a positive impact. ;)

And remember that this all started because of criticism of the experience of disadvantaged groups (non-white-straight-cis-male) at PAX, so there is "things he did or didn't do" at the root of it.

breakman
01-01-2014, 05:52 PM
Gabe's "resolution". (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2014/01/01/resolutions) Thoughts?

That's...close. The fact that it isn't in response to a "current" controversy is encouraging.

Given what he said at PAX, I would like a more specific acknowledgement of what he/they have done wrong.

Wolfgang
01-01-2014, 08:13 PM
If everything he regrets doing/saying and wanting to stop being a bully is something that sticks going forward, that'd pretty much be the best possible scenario. A post like that is a good start, and since it's a tacit admission I'd imagine that everything h puts out in public now is going to go through a PR filter, until/if he's able to censor himself on his own. There aren't a lot of public personalities who'd lay it on the line and talk so personally like that, especially in what's still a very machismo-based industry and fandom, so good for him on that.

Wolfgang
01-01-2014, 08:18 PM
But Also: I love that this particular blog post immediately follows one about him shitting out his soul from food poisoning.

Don't... don't go to the olive garden

MikeDinosaur
01-02-2014, 08:30 PM
I thought that was really moving. Good luck to him.

ThornGhost
01-03-2014, 06:33 AM
Breaking News:

40 year old married man with children thinks about maybe kinda growing up a little bit.

You know. For the brand.

TK Flash
01-03-2014, 06:56 AM
Pfff hahahaha

madhair60
01-03-2014, 07:14 AM
Breaking news: TT poster is sardonic

Balrog
01-03-2014, 09:10 AM
I like how Gabe does this every 3-6 months and people fall for it. Have you guys not seen "What's Love Got to Do with It"?

Droewyn
01-03-2014, 12:52 PM
That's...close. The fact that it isn't in response to a "current" controversy is encouraging.

madhair60
01-03-2014, 01:21 PM
I like how Gabe does this every 3-6 months and people fall for it. Have you guys not seen "What's Love Got to Do with It"?

Haha yeah because this is exactly like that. (!?!?!??!?!?!???!??!?!?)

estragon
01-03-2014, 01:26 PM
Yes, Balrog was saying that Gabe is literally abusing his spouse, Tina Turner.

He was definitely not using hyperbole for comic effect to note the repeated patterns of "I'll change, really, I mean it this time" statements.

(Honestly though I do think this is a good step, if followed up with things like successful implementation of the diversity efforts at PAX.)

Behemoth
01-03-2014, 01:39 PM
I thought today's comic was funny. It's kind of ironic, though, that after that soul-searching post the punchline is entirely based on Gabe being a dick. If Mike makes good on his resolution and becomes a changed man, will the cartoon version make nice as well? Or will Gabe maintain his assholery, much as Tycho has maintained his hair?

waterpot
01-03-2014, 01:45 PM
I always say separate the artist from his work,
But since Penny arcade is so personal and sometimes they voice
The authors opinions in a cartoony and exagerated way,
Sometimes is too hard to do it

Dawnswalker
01-03-2014, 02:06 PM
I don't care what he says, I care what he does.

Exactly. On the other hand...

The fact that it isn't in response to a "current" controversy is encouraging.

He seems considerably more sincere than he ever has in any of his "I'm sorry I called you X or whatever and hurt your feelings and junk I won't do it again I promise btw PAX passes are on sale again so get on that" apologies. He also finally acknowledges the fact that he was, and still is, every bit as much of a bully as the kids who tormented him growing up, which is an important step to shedding the Martyred Nerd image that drives the worst impulses of the "community."

I wish him luck with his resolution, and that the PA fandom might follow him on a positive crusade for once.

Sarcasmorator
01-03-2014, 02:41 PM
I remember a discussion with someone here — Kylie, I believe, though I don't know in which thread — about John Scalzi a while back, and his obligation (or lack thereof) to speak up about the Penny Arcade guys, him being a friend of theirs with a significant public presence online. A couple days ago, he did (http://whatever.scalzi.com/2014/01/01/mike-krahulik-and-his-new-years-resolution/).

Alixsar
01-03-2014, 02:42 PM
But Also: I love that this particular blog post immediately follows one about him shitting out his soul from food poisoning.

Don't... don't go to the olive garden

Immediately followed by

I thought that was really moving. Good luck to him.

BA DUM PSH

madhair60
01-03-2014, 03:40 PM
Yes, Balrog was saying that Gabe is literally abusing his spouse, Tina Turner.

He was definitely not using hyperbole for comic effect to note the repeated patterns of "I'll change, really, I mean it this time" statements.

Ah! I see. Funny stuff

Droewyn
01-03-2014, 03:56 PM
I remember a discussion with someone here — Kylie, I believe, though I don't know in which thread — about John Scalzi a while back, and his obligation (or lack thereof) to speak up about the Penny Arcade guys, him being a friend of theirs with a significant public presence online. A couple days ago, he did (http://whatever.scalzi.com/2014/01/01/mike-krahulik-and-his-new-years-resolution/).

Here's a nice shutdown of a "Mike shouldn't listen to anyone because ARTIST" response in the comments. (http://whatever.scalzi.com/2014/01/01/mike-krahulik-and-his-new-years-resolution/#comment-539946)

Sarcasmorator
01-03-2014, 04:24 PM
Yeah, that's a good one. I went through that thread but must have scrolled past that part. Thing about Scalzi is, he knows how to structure an argument, and how to pick apart a bad one.

Wolfgang
01-03-2014, 05:19 PM
BA DUM PSH

yeah, i saw it

Dizzy
01-03-2014, 06:33 PM
I'm willing to bet he's exaggerating his miserable childhood. Everyone exaggerates their miserable childhood. I don't know if I cared for that psychological history. You don't see criminal defense lawyers bringing up their client's childhood to a jury. You do see narcissists doing that, though.

I also would have appreciated a more specific apology about the things he's said and done, along with more specific resolutions, instead of a general "I won't be an asshole no 'mo."

In fact, he should consider following these steps from Alcoholics Anonymous immediately:

• Make a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

• Make direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

• Continue to take personal inventory, and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

...along with the following the rest of the steps.

But I appreciate the apology nonetheless and I am glad one of the founders sees fit to invest in the brand in a more socially conscious fashion.

MikeDinosaur
01-03-2014, 11:09 PM
I'm willing to bet he's exaggerating his miserable childhood. Everyone exaggerates their miserable childhood. I don't know if I cared for that psychological history. You don't see criminal defense lawyers bringing up their client's childhood to a jury. You do see narcissists doing that, though.

But the way people hurt each other does come from their own suffering, whether real or imagined. When you overreact to something and hurt someone, when you feel yourself rationalizing it, just track how fast you reach for your childhood, your upbringing, some slight that's been inflicted on you. I think looking at that rationalization system in the context of a resolution to change is absolutely appropriate--more than that, it's the only way to start undermining those specious rationalizations.

Anyway, as everyone's said, it's a first step, not a last step. It doesn't change what he's done. It doesn't mean he gets a guaranteed ticket to heaven when he dies. It's something though, I think.

le geek
01-05-2014, 07:39 AM
I thought that was really moving. Good luck to him.

The apology, or the olive garden post?

EDIT: Too slow dawg!!! Unlike the events after Olive Garden!


K.O.!

Wolf
01-07-2014, 01:18 PM
I'm willing to bet he's exaggerating his miserable childhood. Everyone exaggerates their miserable childhood. I don't know if I cared for that psychological history. You don't see criminal defense lawyers bringing up their client's childhood to a jury. You do see narcissists doing that, though.

I'm not sure how much he's exaggerating (if at all), and I'm not certain that it even matters. The actual events are often less important than our perception of those events. I tend to perceive most of my own childhood as somewhat miserable (for much different reasons than Krahulik's), even though I know, intellectually, that most of it was probably just pretty average. It's just that the parts that come through most, in my memory, are the more prominent highs and lows. I'm sure it's the same with most people. None of And at any rate, none of us armchair psychiatrists here are really qualified to judge the degree of his potential exaggeration and what it might mean.

And while I might normally be somewhat skeptical at his efforts to rationalize his behavior, I really don't feel that skepticism here. Yes, he mentions that he was bullied in school, had his hair set on fire, got beaten, etc. But I feel like this is more in an effort to say "Listen, you have to understand, I'm not actually a monster, here's how I got this way" rather than "These things that were done to me explain my behavior, and because of them you should absolve me of all guilt and blame". Despite his rationalization, he still owns the fault for his errors. That doesn't sound like someone who wants to convince other people that he didn't actually do anything wrong.

I also would have appreciated a more specific apology about the things he's said and done, along with more specific resolutions, instead of a general "I won't be an asshole no 'mo."

Except he's not apologizing for a specific action or event here, which would probably be unnecessary since he's made apologies about specific actions after he's had some time to reflect, if I recall correctly. Here, though, he's apologizing for his underlying nature that's caused all these problems in the first place.

waterpot
01-08-2014, 07:59 AM
Today strip,
Its not big news that Gabe takes medicines, but had no idea that they took So Many of them and Also tycho joined the drug thing,
They must be under a lot of pressure , it Seems they take more medicines than Your average senior citizen and the PA duo are on their 30's
(so in the near future we are going to see remake versions of old grampa simpson jokes?)

Falselogic
01-08-2014, 09:43 AM
Modern America is so fucked up that the only way many people can stand existing in it is through massive self medication...

waterpot
01-08-2014, 10:51 AM
Modern America is so fucked up that the only way many people can stand existing in it is through massive self medication...

Thats horrible, I dont why you Also drug hyper active kids
(thats a lie, right? Just because I saw it on the simpsons
Does not make it real)

Sarcasmorator
01-08-2014, 11:44 AM
Modern America is so fucked up that the only way many people can stand existing in it is through massive self medication...

You know, I know you're being hyperbolic, but a lot of people don't need medication, and a lot of people need some, and some people really, truly need a lot of them, and that may or may not have anything to do with modern America being fucked up in any particular case. Not everything is an overprescription.

Whatever else they've done, the PA guys have been pretty open (if not always specific) about their brain problems and that medications help them. I've got family members that get a lot of needed help from the pills they take.

waterpot
01-08-2014, 11:50 AM
You know, I know you're being hyperbolic, but a lot of people don't need medication, and a lot of people need some, and some people really, truly need a lot of them, and that may or may not have anything to do with modern America being fucked up in any particular case. Not everything is an overprescription.

Whatever else they've done, the PA guys have been pretty open (if not always specific) about their brain problems and that medications help them. I've got family members that get a lot of needed help from the pills they take.
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