Looking so much forward to Dune...but Adam Koebel?!

@orlando.moreira
Your earlier post came across as being “he’s being punished unfairly” rather than “he’s been punished enough.”

The former I truly disagree with, the later, I’m not sure.

I will say that the point of outcry is to make others doing public games think, “Damn! I don’t want that happening to me!”

Will Koebel do it again? Who knows. Is he likely to? I don’t know him, and am not empaneled in a jury, so can’t judge him.

But I can look at the numbers for others… Albeit worse offenses… and note that the recidivism rates are way high for all sex offenders. Sufficiently so that registration has stood the test in the courts for common good outweighing the offender’s rights after incarceration.

So, is it an overreaction to think he’s gotten off light? no.
Is it an overreaction to think he’s been roasted to a crisp already? Possibly. I don’t think so.

Modiphius has said they’re aware, and watching him closely… Which means, if he does do something stupid again while in their employ, Modiphius roasts with him… or sacrifices him to the altar of Public Ire.

I can respect giving him a second chance. I disagree with it for sexual harassment, but I can respect it. So, for me, not a dealbreaker that he’s on the Dune team.

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Ok. I promised not to reply publicly to this thread, but that was before I realized I cannot send you a PM. So, hopefully, really last time.

I don’t condone what he did. I don’t even argue that he shouldn’t be punished.

And I agree that he should be “on probation” at this stage.

But mind you, you (and others) are talking quite literally about the man as a sex offender!

But if he is a sex offender for playing one as a GM, am I being a genocidal maniac when I play Emperor Palpatine ordering a Death Star attack against a planet? Am I a child murderer if I play Anakin Skywalker killing the Jedi apprentices? And if not, what are them the different

There is a huge difference between having an imagined character assault another imagined character in a fictional setting and actual sexual assault! There was never any sign of any intention of Koebel to use the fiction as innuendo or any other bridge to real world sexual offense. Do you want to equate depictions of crime in fiction to the crime itself?

Furthermore, a “sex offender” is very objectively defined as someone who was actually convicted in court for a sexual crime:

So, in fact, calling Koebel a sex offender probably qualifies as a crime of slander or libel (depending on where you do it).

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First witch hunts, now heads in a basket.

Your arguments would stand much better as valid points if you didn’t react to criticism with such extreme nonsensical examples.

Indeed. But reading his string of “apologies”, he doesn’t seem to have learned much at all.

This is evident. And I do not mean that sarcastically.
It is also why your arguments have a substantive point and you perhaps should let them stand without dipping into the rhetorical extreme examples of witch hunts and guillotines.

I wish Dune by Modiphius to not only be (as I referred to it earlier) a great game but a crown jewel in the history of rpgs. I would also like to not desire to tear out pages of the book should I purchase it. Nor to feel that a game company I have recently come to find (and love) kept a writer with recent terrible behavior out of convenience, or worse, feelings that what he did was “not a big deal”. Ethics, I feel, should be more important than editorial expediency.

As I’ve said, I have too much personal and academic knowledge of history and human barbarity to support whatever it means to cancel via cancel culture. I simply do not wish to see someone who went out of their way to play out a sexual assault in a video-streamed game be rewarded with a highly visible platform by an otherwise excellent company. And, from a personal perspective, to tarnish a beloved property I hope to engage with beyond our play test group.

While I personally wouldn’t hurl such at you, this has certainly become the depth of conversation that requires coffee or tea and an outside scenic venue.

Hey all, this discussion is controversial enough as is. Please, when commenting, attack the statement, not the person. Ad hominem attacks are always unacceptable.

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If I am the one who strayed into that territory, I sincerely apologize. I don’t think so, but if I did (you/the aggrieved party) can verbally punch me in the ear in self-defense. I strive to aim criticism at ideas and statements and actions, not the people behind them.

—30—

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I considered not responding, but after taking the time to consider what you stated, the condescension you expressed with your response warrants a response.

Modiphius keeping my support has everything to do with my confidence and trust in their ability to handle Koebel in a manner they deem appropriate. They were called in to handle the course correction issue for Vampire. Everyone voicing their discomfort over any Koebel contributions based Modiphius’ past performance, to my perspective, demeans and lessens Modiphius’ contributions to TTRPGs.

Nothing about my original statement was defending Koebel or the line he crossed. However, because I feel as though he is being held accountable enough, I am defending him. That’s a huge stretch of logic no matter how I look at it.

Also, nothing about my OP implied I “feel incredibly uncomfortable” with someone voicing criticism. I WAS expressing aggravation at what I saw as a lack of trust in Modiphius. Nothing ironic about that.

Am I supposed to hold my GMs responsible when they include moments of drunkenly induced rage beatings because of what happened to me in my own childhood? No. That’s my crux to bare and no one else’s responsibility, with that, or other personal matters, and I defy anyone who says otherwise.

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Wow, said the kettle-pot. The smugness and sanctimony in your response is duly noted. And I know to avoid your own arrogance, myopia, and assumptions on these boards from now on.

Reading into a text is not at all the same as meaning from.

Zbogom.

DevouringMessiah, cocomoe, enough. Last warning.

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My apologies. Despite what has occurred, wasn’t my intention to cause issues. No excuses.

A statement about Adam Koebel

After a discussion with Adam Koebel, all parties involved have decided that it is best he resign his ongoing projects with Modiphius Entertainment. We have been following the events of Far Verona and Adam’s conduct on the show, and we feel his journey toward rectifying the situation isn’t yet complete.

Adam’s work for us was written over the winter of 2019 and was specifically about best practices for gamemasters, and we feel it pertinent that the work not be included and his participation in ongoing projects suspended. We are replacing his work using a small team of diverse writers that include women and PoC — writers who were already members of the team who have or will be creating material for our games.

Consent and safety in roleplaying games is an absolute necessity, and all of our roleplaying games in the future will contain advice and guidance on those aspects for everyone at the table. The safety of our fans is of prime importance to us.

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I, for one, say THANK YOU.

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This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

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This has nothing to do with the so-called cancel culture but with the fact that the person in question should write a chapter about GMing and did no even manage to follow his own rules. So it is only logical that he had to resign.

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

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I have a mixed reaction to this decision by Modiphius, support and understand why they made the choice, but also concern. My concern being where the line is to being sensitive and enough is enough - you must take responsibility for your own sensitivities and not have others take responsibility. I firmly believe that just as people can take things too far - Adam Koebel in this instance, that you can also take being sensitive too far. Whether or not Modiphius’ decision here is the former or the latter remains to be seen. Some will celebrate the decision, some will criticize it, other won’t care one way or the other. In any case, I stand by my original statement.

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I think it’s the right decision to make - his involvement would bring unneeded controversy to the project and is he that important to the project? He was writing a GM section and I think the Modiphius solution sounds more than adequate, less one person’s GM guidelines and now the community of people making the game giving GM guidelines.
It’s tough seeing all this going on in the gaming and other industries, but I think individuals need to be accountable for behaviour and empathy for people should not be a thing we have to ask for.

Dyt - the thing that happened that led to this, it should never be something to laugh about nor something on a gaming table aimed at a PC. Ever.

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I’m not arguing against that or even in disagreement with Modiphius. Like I stated, I understand and support Modiphius’ decision. They were chosen to course correct Vampire for a reason. I am by no means downplaying Koebel’s actions or anything similar that has occurred, however, I am also concerned that we are becoming way too sensitive. By today’s standards when someone calls me a c r a c k e r (even Modiphius blocks that out), it’s offensive. Really? SO I’m supposed to be upset that I was called a “thin, crisp, salted wafer” or that I live in the utmost worst conditions (I do live in the US, so maybe) or that no one really cares about me. An even bigger travesty of sensitivity are the warning labels on DVDs of early Sesame Street episodes which state: “These early ‘Sesame Street’ episodes are intended for grown-ups, and may not suit the needs of today’s preschool child.” That’s what I mean by too sensitive. Where is the line between being considerate being overly sensitive? It’s getting to the point I can’t even make fun of myself.

I, for one, am happy to hear that Koebel is no longer on this project. Thank you, Modiphius! His involvement had been tarnishing my anticipation for this title, and now I’m really looking forward to it again!

Whether you think Koebel’s punishment is excessive or not, the fact is that he can no longer be considered an expert on GM best-practices. Should the man be allowed to work and write again after the incident? Yes… but his days of being taken seriously as a vocal advocate of consent in gaming and creating a safe gaming space are gone, possibly forever.

Some might complain that we’ve gone too far as a culture with sensitivity and political correctness. I won’t get involved in that argument. All I can say is that as someone who has been a GM since the 80’s, I can tell you that the industry’s move in the direction of supporting racial and sexual/gender inclusivity is something that was sorely needed. Creating a gaming environment where our sisters, wives, and daughters can also enjoy the hobby is a beautiful thing; and I thank Modiphius for being at the forefront of that movement.

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I agree, but not completely. If you really need such a scene for some reason, it should happen off screen and you still need the consent of the player whose PC is to be the victim.
The problem is that Adam Koebel did not even follow his own advice and his own rules when playing out the scene in question. And such a guy should write the GM advice section?

I agree. Look at the product page of old D&D books at DriveThruRPG. WotC added a disclaimer which in my opinion goes to far.
This climate is toxic for the RPG industry. It makes historical campaigns impossible, because our past was racist and sexist. And every writer has to be certain that nothing they wrote can be seen as racist, sexist etc. One example: a campaign/world ( Tharun) exists for the German RPG Das Schwarze Auge (= The Dark Eye) which among other things is sexist, because women have less rights than men there. In the original campaign setting from the late 1980s the PCs come from the the standard campaign world (Aventuria) on which gender equality is more or less the norm and their task was to fight against the rulers of this other world. Such a campaign would not be possible in the current climate.

But should we even rewrite old campaign settings to reach that goal? Even if the setting already was a role model on this topic?
And we should ask ourselves if some allegation are really true. Is a setting based on early medieval Europe racist, because no people of colour a described in the setting? Is it racist, because you are not allowed to play an orc? Is it sexist, because female knights are not allowed for historical reasons? Is a setting based on medieval Japan racist, because you can only play pseudo-japanese people? Is a setting racist, because different sepcies have different abilities scores?
RPGs live on diversity. Not diversity of ‘races’ or gender, but the diversity of settings. We do not need this kind of extreme egalitarianism in RPG. It should still be allowed that in many settings orcs are irredeemable evil, that in some settings gender roles still exist, etc. And it is much more fun if your character breaks the rules by being a female knights in a setting in which this is nearly unheard of instead of being one in a setting in which this is nothing special.

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