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Sarr/Myrr Race Marshall
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silway
Thu Mar 29 2012, 08:58PM
silway
Registered Member #55
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 10:07AM
Posts: 106
"Although you the player are not allowed to discriminate, your character can discriminate on the in-game basis of matters of player's choice."

I've ran into plenty of 'racist elves' that think my character is an animal and there's even notable events where bias has impacted in-game history.

It goes on to state that such things are best avoided if possible. Being born female isn’t a player’s choice but playing a Sarr is a player's choice it should be permissible. There's also a good reason for it as the female/male birth rate is 4/1 and in the case of the Palang it's mentioned that it's even lower than that. A player doesn’t have to be a Sarr from Myrr nor do they have to accept a Matriarchy. The only way a player has to follow a society like that is if they choose to of their own free will."

You glossed over the point quite nicely there. The policy allows you to discriminate against Sarr, Elves, Biata, etc. Not against gender. Racist elves are fine, characters you hate users of celestial magic are fine, but organizations that require women to be subservient and domestic while the men are in charge are not fine. Nor are Matriarchies. We have them, but every step back to a gender-neutral game is a good step.

Nor, btw, is not having gender bias in the game a) going to make anyone "John Smith in costuming" b) somehow MORE like the real world.

Either NERO wants IG gender discrimination or it doesn't. If it doesn't, as is currently specified, then it should get rid of it. Even if it takes a while. If it *does* then that can of worms needs to be opened up equally. I prefer the former.
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Stripes
Thu Mar 29 2012, 09:35PM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 04:33PM
Posts: 54
It wasn't my intention to gloss over anything. If anything it's a mute point as Myrr is National controlled and PCs won't ever have to worry about dealing with titles there. I've been to several chapters where male Sarr do have titles. Since I play a Myrran my character would refuse one, but that's my choice. There's no rule that says I can't just because of my gender. In that light, there is no bias to worry about.

If it isn't obvious, I play a male Sarr from Myrr and I'm just fine with it. I like and want the differences and I don't feel discriminated against at all. I read the packet, agreed with it, knew 100% up front how their society was before I even played and I enjoy every bit of it. I want tension and conflict, not just neutral everything. I will also stand by my point that if a player wants to be a Myrran Sarr from a Matriarchy it is entirely their choice, there's nothing that says they have to.

Another note is that the current packet states that while it is natural for male Sarr to defer to females it isn't required to play one. There's even an example that if a female gets too bossy they'll wind up being ignored.

We're not going to agree on this but I appreciate your responses.
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silway
Thu Mar 29 2012, 10:09PM
silway
Registered Member #55
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 10:07AM
Posts: 106
There is a difference between a player discriminating based on gender and the organization itself. Both are troublesome to me, but institutionalizing gender discrimination in the world by having core racial homelands be Matriarchies is wrong.

And yeah, we'll probably not agree and I apologize for the sharpness of my previous reply.

Mickey
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Stripes
Fri Mar 30 2012, 12:40AM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 04:33PM
Posts: 54
Yeah, we're not going to agree but discussion is what forums are for. =)

I don't think it's wrong in the slightest when it isn't reality. This is fantasy, there's hundreds of books and movies in the fantasy setting that include gender discrimination. Most for a good reason like the birth rates of Sarr. Take the Wheel of Time series for example. Only females were allowed to channel because when men did it it drove them mad. Or in virtually all the versions of King Arthur and the Elenium series where women were not allowed to become Knights. They're still enjoyed by thousands of fans. I don't see why NERO can't be enjoyed as well with a Matriarchy here and there. I certainly don't think it's an example of institutionalization from National. Myrr might as well be a backwater 3rd tier nation when you compare it to Solus or Evandarr. If those campaigns were Matriarchal or Patriarchal I would probably agree with you, but they're are about as neutral as humanly possible.
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silway
Fri Mar 30 2012, 01:01AM
silway
Registered Member #55
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 10:07AM
Posts: 106
Well, Myrr is *the* National Sarr racial homeland. Draelonde is *the* National Drae racial homeland. There may be other Sarr and Drae kingdoms out there, but those two are, specifically, the bastions and archetypal presentations of those races.

As for fiction vs. reality, there's something different when it comes to LARPing I think, particularly when the stated policy is no gender discrimination. The world of Tyrra is ostensibly gender-neutral and yet, these two places that are iconic for their race are gender biased. On top of which, there is no similarly statured National Patriarchies so we end up with both gender bias at the NAtional level and a weird hypocrisy about it. If NERO wants the grittier game of gender bias being a thing... well, not my cup of tea for a number of reasons, but it should at least own up to that and alter its policies accordingly and go ahead and make it a thing. As it is, I have been in the room when people were discussing plot ideas and coming up with all sorts of Matriarchal or women-only groups and saw someone villified for proposing a counterpart male-only group. And sure, I know why, because that's how it can be in the real world a lot so why bring it into LARPs? But that's my point, why have it and stir up these issues? And I will never bend on the idea that one-way gender discrimination in a LARP is worse than two-way or none.

Or, the short version: Dear NERO, pick a side. Are we or are we not playing in a gameworld where it is an appropriate and Nationally supported part of the setting to have gender discrimination?

And one minor point, when National Sarr NPCs from Myrr come out and discriminate against my PC, even though he's not a Sarr, that's not something I opted in for (except to the extent that I play NERO). That's something that just happened to me where I suffered a negative outcome because of my gender, something that the institutions of the game itself is doing, not just other PCs or a singular NPC who doesn't realize they're crossing a discriminatory line.

Mickey
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Stripes
Fri Mar 30 2012, 01:53AM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 04:33PM
Posts: 54
As for fiction vs. reality, there's something different when it comes to LARPing I think, particularly when the stated policy is no gender discrimination. The world of Tyrra is ostensibly gender-neutral and yet, these two places that are iconic for their race are gender biased. On top of which, there is no similarly statured National Patriarchies so we end up with both gender bias at the National level and a weird hypocrisy about it.

I understand where you're coming from with the Matriarchy/Patriarchy debate, but nothing says because you have one thing you have to have a counterbalance. Not everything has to be even. As you said, the Sarr and Drae are iconic with their societies being Matriarchal. It's not a hard and fast rule, but most kingdoms have a King. Ruling Queens seem to be the exception, not the rule. It makes them different and exotic and there's an appeal to that. It's not that you can't play that race because you're not the right gender, it's only a matter of title in those specific National-controlled lands and has zero practical impact on players.

If NERO wants the grittier game of gender bias being a thing... well, not my cup of tea for a number of reasons, but it should at least own up to that and alter its policies accordingly and go ahead and make it a thing. As it is, I have been in the room when people were discussing plot ideas and coming up with all sorts of Matriarchal or women-only groups and saw someone villified for proposing a counterpart male-only group. And sure, I know why, because that's how it can be in the real world a lot so why bring it into LARPs? But that's my point, why have it and stir up these issues? And I will never bend on the idea that one-way gender discrimination in a LARP is worse than two-way or none.

On that subject I will agree with you. It's one thing to have a Matriarchy/Patriarchy but when someone gets blasted if they suggest the opposite is hypocrisy at it's finest. I don't think that's what National is doing though. If National stomped on a new race because it was 'officially' Patriarchal I would have issues myself. That isn't the case here.

Or, the short version: Dear NERO, pick a side. Are we or are we not playing in a gameworld where it is an appropriate and Nationally supported part of the setting to have gender discrimination?

Of course I think it's fine just the way it is. I like the racial 'flaws and quirks'. Myrr also has indentured servants, would that be the next thing to go? What about the Eldest being in charge? Shall we add in age discrimination? I just see a slippery slope of trying to be more accommodating would just gut a unique and interesting race.


And one minor point, when National Sarr NPCs from Myrr come out and discriminate against my PC, even though he's not a Sarr, that's not something I opted in for (except to the extent that I play NERO). That's something that just happened to me where I suffered a negative outcome because of my gender, something that the institutions of the game itself is doing, not just other PCs or a singular NPC who doesn't realize they're crossing a discriminatory line.

On one hand I hate that you had a bad experience, but on the other I think you're very lucky. I'm literally the -only- regular Sarr in my chapter and as much as I would love visitors from Myrr I certainly don't expect our Plot team to cater to the desires of a single individual. Unless I miss my guess that NPC was played wrong. You shouldn't have been discriminated just because you were male unless you screwed up by the numbers. Just because Females are the only title holders doesn't imply that they look down on the other gender and treat them poorly.
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silway
Fri Mar 30 2012, 10:17AM
silway
Registered Member #55
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 10:07AM
Posts: 106
Couple of specific factual responses since I think the general points are pretty well defined. Not using the quotes since I think that'll make it hard to read:

Re: Titles - In actuality, there's at least one Myrran PC male knight. Which is where this whole discussion started. He broke through the glass ceiling basically, on a plotline that was, I assume, designed to equalize things at least somewhat.

Re: Stomping on official Patriarchies - Those are, actually, forbidden. At least from the years 1996 (when I first joined Ravenholt staff which meant I got to know the current National people of the day) until late 2010/early 2011 (When I left National staff) having a National level organization that was an explicit Patriarchy was not permitted. I suppose I can't technically speak for the years before or the year after.

Re: That Sarr NPC I dealt with - It's more than one, across 17+ years of play and in more than one state, and is in keeping with Myrran society. Or more specifically, is not forbidden by Myrran society despite being incompatible with NERO policy.

When it comes down to it, all I can really say is that a Nationally sanctioned stable permanent fundamental Patriarchy is not permitted but a Nationally sanctioned Matriarchy is. So, to loop *WWWWAY* back to the beginning of this giant string of replies, I'm glad Myrr lets men be knights because it's a step closer to the National Races being in concert with National policy. In X number of years hopefully we'll have Myrran Patriarchs as well.
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silway
Fri Mar 30 2012, 10:20AM
silway
Registered Member #55
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 10:07AM
Posts: 106
Oh, not directly relevant, but because I want to head off some possible rumors; For anyone reading this exchange who knows me and where I play, I am *not* talking about any interactions with the character Shustar (a National Myrran NPC). Sorry, I know that's a meaningless caveat to most people reading this, but for those in the NorthEast I didn't want them to think I was obliquely talking about that character/player.

Mickey
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Stripes
Fri Mar 30 2012, 12:20PM
stripes
Registered Member #204
Joined: Thu Sep 01 2011, 04:33PM
Posts: 54
Interesting, thanks for the information. As a southeast player, these are areas I can't really comment on. I just haven't had those experiences and I honestly don't expect to.
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silway
Fri Mar 30 2012, 01:33PM
silway
Registered Member #55
Joined: Mon Aug 08 2011, 10:07AM
Posts: 106
Who knows, with National being run out of Georgia, you just might. Good luck!

Mickey
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