Once again, I will not negotiate with terrorists.

Ok, let’s try this again. 

This has nothing to do with games and is not a matter of legitimate public interest, but is simply a personal matter. I would hope and request that the games press be respectful of what IS a personal matter, and not news, and not about games. This is explicitly about my private life, which has been regrettably forced into the public and framed by people who pose a threat to my safety and well being as well as that of the people I love. I would hope that the effort people have gone through to dress it up as anything more would not be enough to have those who see it for what it is take the bait.

I am not going to link to, or address anything having to do with the validity of the specific claims made by an angry ex-boyfriend with an axe to grind and a desire to use 4chan as his own personal army. This is not a “she-said” to his “he-said”. The idea that I am required to debunk a manifesto of my sexual past written by an openly malicious ex-boyfriend in order to continue participating in this industry is horrifying, and I won’t do it. It’s a personal matter that never should have been made public, and I don’t want to delve into personal shit, mine or anyone else’s, while saying that people’s love and sex lives are no one’s business. I’m not going to talk about it. I will never talk about it. It is not your goddamned business.

What I *am* going to say is that the proliferation of nude pictures of me, death threats, vandalization, doxxing of my trans friends for having the audacity to converse with me publicly, harassment of friends and family and my friends’ family in addition to TOTALLY UNRELATED PEOPLE, sending my home address around, rape threats, memes about me being a whore, pressures to kill myself, slurs of every variety, fucking debates over what my genitals smell like, vultures trying to make money off of youtube videos about it, all of these things are inexcusable and will continue to happen to women until this culture changes. I’m certainly not the first. I wish I could be the last.

Because I’ve had a small degree of success in a specific subculture, every aspect of my life is suddenly a matter of public concern. Suddenly it’s acceptable to share pictures of my breasts on social media to threaten and punish me. Suddenly I don’t have any right to privacy or basic dignity. Suddenly I don’t get to live out normal parts of life, like going through a bad and ugly breakup in private. I have forfeited this by being a blip in a small community, while those who delight in assailing me hide behind their keyboards and a culture that permits it, beyond reproach.

My life and my body are not public property. No one’s life and body are public property.

Sexuality is one of the most personal, hurtful, and easy things to demonize a woman over, and also has nothing to do with my games. Yet large swaths of the gaming community are either unable or unwilling to separate the two. I’m convinced that my ex chose 4chan as the staging ground for his campaign of harassment and character assassination because he knew this; he knew that someone claiming to be “from the Internet” has shown up at my house once already, and he is counting on the most reviled hubs of our community to live up to their sordid reputations. This is another example of gendered violence, whereby my personal life becomes a means to punish my professional credentials and to try to shame me into giving up my work. I’m still committed to doing my small part to create a world where no woman is at risk of experiencing this. That said, I am thankful that even boards with a reputation for being the most hostile places online have been able to tell the intent behind these threads and banned them outright, seeing the hate speech for what it is, and not-news for what it is. 

As much as those leading the charge against me will do mental backflips to make posting pictures of my tits about “ethics”, the real agenda is plain as day if you give it even a moment of sincere critical thought. No one who would terrorize someone and the totally uninvolved people they love in this way on such a massive and public scale could ever honestly claim to be interested in “ethics” of any kind. These kinds of accusations have been levied against any woman of status in any industry, ever. I have been judged because, if you are a woman, you are expected to constantly “prove” yourself, and even mere accusations can somehow undo all the good you’ve done and justify any measure of depraved brutality against you. Meanwhile, I see major support thrown the way of my male colleagues when they are accused of any sort of wrongdoing. Neither of these attitudes is correct, and they are patently unfair and reductive. Nobody exists in a vacuum, and anyone can change and grow into a better person. Heroes and villains don’t exist - just regular boring-ass people with scars and fuckups and moments of brilliance. And every single boring-ass person deserves the space to keep personal matters private and handled outside the shark tank of anonymous internet boards.

Once again, I will not be addressing the specific validity of any statements about my private life. If you have good-faith questions or doubts, I am more than happy to discuss private matters in private, where they belong. But I refuse to be coerced into making my private life or anyone’s private life a matter of public record, and I refuse to be continually emotionally terrorized by people who have long decided to hate me regardless.

I’m looking forward to moving on and getting back to work. To anyone else who has had to deal with this kind of indignity on any scale, you have my undying support and my ear if you ever want to talk to someone who might understand. To the people who support my work and can see this crusade for what it is, thank you from the bottom of my heart. To those people, I love you, I always have, and I always will.

Releasing Depression Quest on Steam Today

image

After a long uphill battle since getting Greenlit in January, Depression Quest was planned to, and approved for, launch on Steam today. Literally minutes after we got the notification, beloved actor Robin Williams was found dead from a suspected suicide after a long struggle with depression. We were all ready to hit the big red button the minute that the news broke.

So now I’m left with the question - do we launch, or not? I turned to twitter and my most trusted friends for advice because I can see going a few different ways. It’s not an easy decision.

The game is available for free online using a pay what you want model including absolutely nothing, with a portion of the proceeds going to charity to combat the stigma and culture of silence around this debilitating disease. A question that held up the porting process on Steam was the question of how to implement pay-what-you-want in a backend that doesn’t support it. The two ways we could ape it would be in app purchases (microtransactions) or through providing DLC that had different payment tiers. Both of these seemed suboptimal. The microtransactions require getting a secure server that I don’t have the money to maintain while praying that those who have already been very vocal about wanting to destroy both myself and my work wouldn’t be able to take it down, in addition to adding in ugly interface elements that hurt the design of the game. So that’s not really an option. The problem with adding in DLC with nothing that really offers much to the player is that is a good way to breed misunderstandings, and I don’t think it would be ethical to charge someone knowing that there’s a percentage of people who would feel ripped off or misled. I don’t want to take that chance.

So then the choice becomes do we charge or not? Many people were pushing me to charge, citing the help we could offer charities and the value of getting paid for your hard work and taking that money and making more things that could help people.

But none of that felt right. When making something you have to ask yourself what’s the spirit of the thing you’ve made. Why have you made this particular thing? And with Depression Quest, the answer has always been clear as day.

Depression Quest has always been an attempt to make a tool to help people understand depression and reach out to others living with the reality of this disease.

There is no way, in my mind, to ethically put something intended to be a tool for helping people behind a paywall. None.

This was the same guiding principle behind putting the game back on Greenlight after withdrawing initially due to threats and harassment. It’s a really really fucking hard thing to accept - that you have made something that can help someone else, especially when you yourself suffer from depression and have a very hard time accepting that you could do anything for anyone and aren’t totally worthless. But I’ve heard from too many people, heard too many stories from you wonderful fucking people, to ignore that. I love all of you too much to discount your lived experiences, so I accept that the game can help people seek help. Someone getting help or even feeling understood when they feel like an alien on their own planet is too rare of a thing to gamble with, too important to flinch from because you’re worried what people will think of you or say to you.

Similarly, that is why today leaves me conflicted. Majorly, massively conflicted. The last thing I want for the game is for the launch to seem opportunistic or like it is capitalizing on a massive tragedy like we’ve seen today. So again, I’ve turned to you. I’ve thought through a number of possible scenarios, and I feel like I have a responsibility to release today. I know there may be a worst case of people assuming the launch somehow is trying to capitalize on tragedy. However, I would rather have those people hate me than the people who are currently quietly suffering with this illness sit at their dinner tables tonight and hear the discussion of today’s news, hear people not understand how someone who had so much could kill themselves, and lack a resource they could have needed right then to point to and say “this is why”. I’d rather have people flood my inbox with threats again and call me a monster if it means that one person who was shocked by today’s news and maybe thinking of trying to reach out and get help could use this tool I’ve made to take the vitally important first steps towards clawing their way out of the hell that is this disease.

I feel like I have a responsibility to those who could be helped. Depression Quest was never ever meant to be just a game, and it has definitely done more than a traditional game might. I get regular emails from therapists who use it with their patients and families of depression sufferers to build a dialog and a bridge to understanding. It’s been used in classroom settings, people have played it with their parents and significant others to start showing them things they had a hard time verbalizing. Not taking those stories and those people seriously and accepting the role that this game was able to play in their own massive undertakings of self care would be disrespecting those people’s struggles. And I can’t do that.

There’s something here that people who don’t live with depression might not understand. When you suffer from this, the small windows of opportunity you have that you feel like you have the energy to and self-worth enough to try and take steps to change things, to want something more than feeling like you barely have your head above water, those chances and that motivation is fucking *rare*. I can’t in good conscience hold back offering someone something that could help them start making real changes in their life or even just offer a temporary relief or better understanding for the sake of reducing the risk of offending people or hurting my own reputation. If I was sitting down across a table from someone who asked me “how could you release the day Robin Williams took his own life” I would know how I could answer. I’d know why I did it, even if I felt conflicted about doing it. But if I sat down across from someone who asked “How could you hold back on releasing this game when I needed it” I would feel ashamed.

So I am launching the game. Quietly. I will not be promoting it until a respectful time later. But I want it to be out there and available in all the ways I can make it be available so that if someone needs it, they have it. After agonizing over it and asking the general public, they’ve overwhelmingly responded with pleas to release it. Especially among depression sufferers.

I never feel like I know what I’m doing, and like all I can ever do is do what feels right after consulting with people for outside perspective. This isn’t an easy choice, but I think it’s the right one.

Please, please, please take care of yourselves. Tell the people in your life you love them. Don’t stop pushing for more understanding and better care of those battling mental illness.

The game is available for free/pay what you want in the following places:

Web version is here at www.depressionquest.com

Itch.io downloadable version is here at http://the-quinnspiracy.itch.io/depressionquest

Steam version available at http://store.steampowered.com/app/270170

I love you all.

So. Let’s do a little experiment.
After keeping a folder on my desktop for the last couple weeks called “another day at the office” that I save shitty comments in, I’ve been wondering what to do with them. I was thinking I’d eventually make some kind of weird art thing with them, but finally I think I’ve got it.
Here is a bingo sheet. The comments are all ones I’ve seen hundreds of times on articles written by or featuring women, and all are pulled from Another Day At The Office. They all focus on shitty things directed at women SPECIFICALLY. Obviously, Attention Whore is the free space. 
Let’s fill these out every time a *major* games press outlet features a woman as a subject or writer of an article, and the article has more than 24 comments. 
Furthermore, if you find an article on a man that actually gets bingo, let’s compare how often that happens vs when it happens with women. 
Let’s keep track of this and be ready to shove it in the faces of anyone who says that harassment has nothing to do with gender. Let’s do it when they say it doesn’t happen. 
Let’s play a game. This is basically the Bechdel test but for comments sections. 

So. Let’s do a little experiment.

After keeping a folder on my desktop for the last couple weeks called “another day at the office” that I save shitty comments in, I’ve been wondering what to do with them. I was thinking I’d eventually make some kind of weird art thing with them, but finally I think I’ve got it.

Here is a bingo sheet. The comments are all ones I’ve seen hundreds of times on articles written by or featuring women, and all are pulled from Another Day At The Office. They all focus on shitty things directed at women SPECIFICALLY. Obviously, Attention Whore is the free space. 

Let’s fill these out every time a *major* games press outlet features a woman as a subject or writer of an article, and the article has more than 24 comments. 

Furthermore, if you find an article on a man that actually gets bingo, let’s compare how often that happens vs when it happens with women. 

Let’s keep track of this and be ready to shove it in the faces of anyone who says that harassment has nothing to do with gender. Let’s do it when they say it doesn’t happen. 

Let’s play a game. This is basically the Bechdel test but for comments sections. 

Anonymous asks:
Do I have to have ever done anything with game design before to take part in Game Parlor? Or is it okay if I send in something that would literally be baby's first game?

Yes absolutely. Whatever gets you devvin’ and feelin’ good :)

You are formally invited to Computer Parlor. Results will be posted tomorrow.
GODSPEED.

You are formally invited to Computer Parlor. Results will be posted tomorrow.

GODSPEED.

I LOOK LIKE ASS BUT YOU CAN WATCH MY HEART BEAT WITH LEDS SO WHO CAAAAAARES

Seriously though this is pretty cool. I’ll write up a thing about the Northpaw after I actually wear it for a while but so far I think it’s pretty damn cool as is.

My heart is kinda broken but at least I replaced it with pretty lights that’s progress right? Throwing LEDs at your problems works, right?

campsnotdead:

More early Camp’s Not Dead notes.

campsnotdead:

More early Camp’s Not Dead notes.

campsnotdead:

From an old and early Camp’s Not Dead brainstorming gdoc between me and Jared.

campsnotdead:

From an old and early Camp’s Not Dead brainstorming gdoc between me and Jared.

campsnotdead:

this is the worst design document ever.
all of that text is animated.

campsnotdead:

this is the worst design document ever.

all of that text is animated.

Anonymous asks:
I co-run a game design club at a college in Minnesota. We technically aren't allowed to actually make games in there because the guy in charge of clubs thinks the school will try to claim ownership of them, so our solution was to spend our meetings having devs come in and speak about making games. However, we've only managed to find two people so far. Do you happen to know of anyone in game development in Minnesota?

I did some digging and came up with these folks:

https://twitter.com/boymonster

https://twitter.com/jeremyjkeller

and the local IGDA: http://www.igdatc.org/ is supposedly pretty active.

Sorry it’s not more, anon!

Also it sucks how often students in game design programs or clubs get screwed like this. I’ve visited a few schools now and all of them except USC IMGD I’ve seen the groups of folks who want to start making games immediately have difficulty doing so and it just seems to backwards and weird. Sorry you’re having to put up with that :(

Anonymous asks:
There's a pretty big gulf between "someone who enjoys games and thinks about what they like and don't like in games" and "someone who designs games", let alone good games. Do you have any comments for someone on the "plays and thinks and has ideas but they're not any good" side of the game design gulf? Is there a way to begin bridging the gap or is it just two different worlds?

Nope! What you need to do is go download any of the following free software:

And start making games. Start by taking one of these things and looking through the tutorial documentation. All of them come with example projects. Once you get a tiny grasp on the interface, take one of the example games and mess with it. Change out the art. Change some variables. Poke at it. Then build something on to it - make it not resemble the sample game at all. I don’t care if you want to be an artist, coder, designer, sound person, or what - it’s good to have a holistic idea of what goes into making games. It lets you communicate with others on your teams better, it lets you find your voice and screw around with smaller stuff on your own time so you can make easy mistakes, and it lets you understand what you’re asking of potential teammates a bit more.

THEN, you should have a bit of familiarity with these tools. The next thing you wanna do is make something from scratch. Think of an idea, and then distill it to the smallest possible gameplay element. Make that ONE element. Just that. Mess with it and see how you like it. Maybe slap in some art (if you’re not an artist check out opengameart so you can still make stuff pretty). Then decide if it’s worth exploring further, if not, do it again. 

Keep doing this till you find something that really resonates with you, and then explore that further but still try and make a small to medium game out of it. Scope is the indie’s mortal enemy, it swoops down on us and devours us in it’s mighty jaws if we don’t carry pointy sticks (or have producers/project managers) to fend off our natural predators. 

Repeat the process till you’re sure if you wanna keep doing this or not. Go to game jams. Meet other developers. Participate in online stuff. Maybe find some people to do small jams with. Show your work to anyone with eyeballs and get feedback. Ask for help if you need it.

That’s the advice I can give as a place to start. If ever you see a better path, and really think that it’s better for you, by all means explore it too. Be ok with failing. Like, a lot. Game designers are a lot like games themselves - we all thrive on iteration and experimentation. Sometimes this means failing, and that’s absolutely an ok thing to do.

And when you’ve made some stuff, show me :)

Anonymous asks:
I agree with most of your viewpoints but you're really mean to assholes. It's a weird thing to point out, I just think that sometimes being nice works too. I don't know

I’m not sure how you can follow anything I do and not know that I am very aware of that. I’ve literally gone on stage at PAX East and advocated for it.

Look. 90% of the time I am patient. It used to be 100% but since getting into a loooooooooooot of conversations with people trying to harass me, I’ve learned a lot.

There’s such a thing as a good faith conversation and a bad faith conversation. 

A good faith conversation comes from a genuine place of ignorance and even misguided naivety. Even if they come off hostile or brash, there’s progress that can be made there. Even if they’re kind of being a dick about it, they show SOME signs of being open to thinking deeper about these things. I can take a bit of a beating if I think the person is actually going to listen to anything I have to say on any level, and I won’t take it too personally. I know there’s plenty of shit I don’t know, and that I used to know even less, and I was lucky enough to have people in my life help me grow because of how they were kind and patient. Even if people doing the harassing don’t adapt immediately, if it seems like they’re thinking about it *at all*, I feel ok with having been polite and actually engaging them. I exhaust myself quite a bit doing this, and it doesn’t usually turn out to be an immediate improvement.

Then there’s bad faith conversations. The person is, quite simply, being an asshole. They will not be dissuaded by evidence, no matter how strong or backed up it is. They have their mind made up about you, and it’s not really a conversation. I feel like these are likely the minority of the interactions I have, and it’s often anonymous internet comments like the ones I’ve been responding to. 

With that in mind, please consider the following factors:

  • I come from a stand up comedy background. Do you know what a heckler is? They’re the latter type of interaction. The best way to handle a heckler, most of the time, is to turn it around on them and make them look foolish, and to out-funny and out-snark them. Honestly, that can work wonders.When people are embarrassed or feel foolish, sometimes that leads to a bit more critical thinking than they’ve been otherwise doing about a situation.
  • I do take the nice route most of the time. It seems like an unfair judgement call to make on someone who has spent months talking to people who are/were anon internet trolls to figure out the root cause of why they are/were like that without judgement or hostility towards them even while I get rape threats from people with a similar mentality once a week and harassing comments DAILY. It’s fucking HARD sometimes. But, one thing I’ve learned from talking to them about shit that changes their dehumanization of their targets is that something humanized them, and a lot of the time when it’s not being nice or vulnerable, it’s by being funny. It’s by playing the game back. It’s immediately relatable on SOME level to give someone who is giving you shit shit right back, especially if they view you as an uptight activist. If being nice isn’t working, sometimes you’re not speaking the same language. Sometimes it helps to try another one, maybe one that will help you get on the same page and get them to realize you’re a person and not just words on a screen, and then you can really talk. It sucks, but there’s some situations being nice will get you nothing more than completely steamrolled over and ignored.
  • Other people who deal with this shit are watching. There have been so many days where I was too exhausted to say anything, to stand up for myself, to make a joke about it, or to try to engage on any level. It just felt like getting punched in a sore spot, usually on days I had other life stuff like when my mom died and people were sending me gross shit about it. A lot of other folks who get harassed have those days too. And when I am having those days, sometimes it can really help to see someone actually fight back against someone who is being an unrelenting asshole. Sometimes you need something else to keep you going. Sometimes you need to have a laugh that someone else is saying the things you wish you had the energy for right then, and humor is a tremendous healing force. 
  • It’s a commonly thrown around shitty thing that women can’t be/aren’t funny. This one is a more personal thing for me, but when someone is taking a massive shit all over me for talking about the realities of being a woman, combined with coming from standup where there’s TREMENDOUS biases against women, it’s like taking the thing they said you could never do and wielding it. I feel like how we deal with things is important, and if I am simply playing to the feminine ideal of essentially acquiescing 100% of the time because I think I *should* and not responding like I do to most things, with humor, then that’s kind of a problem in my mind. 
  • Attitudes like the ones I’ve been responding to should be considered ridiculous, and thus worthy of ridicule. When it’s this hyperbolic and absurd, not treating it as such can kind of set us back sometimes, I think. These are *not* viewpoints that are based in any sort of reality, these are not legitimate issues, these are kids stomping their feet and punching down because they don’t want to hear about anyone that isn’t like them. It’s a lot like when the news has some climate change denier with a phd in fuckall on next to a legitimate scientist in the field - equating the two and pretending they’re equal points in an argument makes zero sense. 
  • Having, as a rule, to always be “nice” to people who mean to shit all over you and will never give you the time of day is a silly rule to try and enforce on anyone. I don’t agree with people who are all rage, all the time, or who are so tired of dealing with this shit day-in day-out that they have no patience left and only really lash out. But I also don’t blame them, and I don’t begrudge them their way of dealing with shit even if it’s different than mine. Unless you’ve been there, you don’t know how exhausting it gets. I don’t think it’s fair or productive to expect anyone to be 100% sweetness and sunshine all the time in the face of people wishing them active harm. I don’t see who that helps other than the people who are going to keep doing it because no one’s ever pushed back against them. And all things considered, pushing back with humor and gentle ribbing is not really that much of a push. It’s not like I’m breaking out slurs or personal attacks, I’m just making fun of the points being made and trying to point out how inane they are. 
  • If you’re always nice in the same way to everyone ever, good lord you sound disingenuous. I’d have a hard time trusting anyone who has the same tone for someone praising them as for someone who sent them a graphic threat. I don’t even think that’s likely a healthy way of dealing with emotions, and it doesn’t let the person who is doing the shitty things KNOW that behavior is shitty and destructive. I’d rather people know where I stand, and trust that I mean what I say.

Basically what I’m saying is 90% of the time, yes. I am in favor of patience and kindness when I have the energy for it, and not engaging when I don’t. Good god, you have NO idea how much I don’t respond to. But ridicule has it’s place to - being intolerant of this sort of behavior is where I’d like the tone of the industry to shift. People who talk to others like the anon I’ve been answering should have those words be mocked, and hopefully they’ll clue into the fact that what they just said was tremendously stupid. 

That 10% I am ok with reserving for stupid anonymous internet comments. 

Anonymous asks:
>I would somehow destroy the entire site by having the same beliefs that the dudes do | It's not as if I'm under the impression that the staff of Giant Bomb don't agree with you; you just whine about a whole lot louder and a whole lot more often than they do (Patrick excluded). Think of how much you time spending on Twitter posting about social justice and compare that to Jeff. Or Vinny. Or Brad. Or even Alex. >It must be really hard for you to ... | Well now you're just being silly again.

yeah wow being forced to follow me on twitter and read about bad shit happening to me and my friends must be really really hard for you. 

so hard that you keep coming to my tumblr and writing a whole lot of whiny words about how much you hate what you perceive to be whining. 

oh my god

The  call  is  coming  from  inside  the  house

quick *69 and look up the number in the phonebook

wait that’s not a phonebook

I <3 <30 Second Videos

I love youtube. I love the weird and awesome things you can find on there, and I’ve made kind of a habit out of dredging up both of those things. I’ve compiled my favorite less than 30 second clips on youtube into a hellscape of a mashup like a really weird mixtape of things you could find on a vhs in a garage and other nonsense.

This could likely be considered NWS because there’s a butt in it at one point and I think people say swears a few times.

I hope you like it!

(there’s an exception made for bob saget’s butt/a piece of pizza cause that’s my OTP sorry)