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#85667 - 03/16/05 02:08 PM IDF wise to D&D
Svengali Offline
CoS Magister

Registered: 03/06/03
Posts: 12460
Loc: Florida, U.S.A.
This cracks me up because my opinion of D&D is manifest in IDF policy:

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Army frowns on Dungeons and Dragons

IDF says players are detached from reality and automatically given a low security clearance
By Hanan Greenberg

Does the Israel Defense Forces believe incoming recruits and soldiers who play Dungeons and Dragons are unfit for elite units? Ynet has learned that 18-year-olds who tell recruiters they play the popular fantasy game are automatically given low security clearance.



“They're detached from reality and suscepitble to influence,” the army says.



Fans of the popular roleplaying game had spoken of rumors of this strange policy by the IDF, but now the army has confirmed that it has a negative image of teens who play the game and labels them as problematic in regard to their draft status.

So if you like fantasy games, go see the military psychologist.



Dungeons and Dragons (also known as D&D) has been a popular roleplaying game for decades and is based on a fantasy world.




One player assumes the role of “Dungeon Master,” which entails directing the game and controlling the labyrinth, while the others select from a large selection of characters that includes warriors, magicians, dwarfs and thieves.

The game focuses on the results of decisions made by the players as determined by the roll of the dice.



In a more "active" version of the game, players leave the table and go out, dressed as the characters they assume for the game, along with the requisite equipment of swords (not real) to play outside, usually in the forest or woods. Most D&D players do not don costumes, and participants in such costume games are called "LARPers" (for live-action role playing).




'Simply detached from reality'



Thousands of youth and teens in Israel play D&D, fighting dragons and demons using their rich imaginations. The game has also increased in popularity due to the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy.




However the IDF does not approve of this unusual hobby and prevents D&D players from being considered for sensitive army positions by labeling them with low security clearance.




"We have discovered that some of them are simply detached from reality," a security source told Ynet.



Game enthusiasts are aware of their problematic image in the army and prefer to maintain their anonymity. Many of them are from the former Soviet Union, where the game is very popular.



In Israel there are thousands of players, between the ages 16 to 35, and include lawyers, high-tech workers and businessmen. Matan, 22, and Igor, a 21-year-old IDF soldier, organize activities for groups of players. Soon hundreds of fans are expected to meet in a forest in the southern part of Israel for a two-day game of pure fantasy.


"It's not a game of winners and losers," Matan says, "but rather entry into another world with stories and plot changes."

He is aware of the game's problematic reputation, especially in the IDF. The army is not indifferent to the unique hobby and is trying to locate soldiers who in their free time dress up as witches and play in forests.



'The game indicates a weak personality'



A security official tells Ynet there are specific criteria for deciding the level of a soldier's security clearance.



"One of the tests we do, either by asking soldiers directly or through information provided us, is to ask whether they take part in the game," he says. "If a soldier answers in the affirmative, he is sent to a professional for an evaluation, usually a psychologist."



More than half of the soldiers sent for evaluation receive low security clearances, thus preventing them from serving in sensitive IDF positions, he says.



Igor says exposing soldiers who play the game could result in the soldiers being sent to a military psychologist or even being kicked out of the army.



"Exposing them could also harm their chances at being accepted to other military courses," he says.



Matan says he has personally met soldiers whose military career was harmed due to their connection to the game. Most soldiers who play Dungeons and Dragons simply do not admit to it while they are in the army, he says.



Why does IDF believe game is dangerous?



"These people have a tendency to be influenced by external factors which could cloud their judgment, a military official says. "They may be detached from reality or have a weak personality - elements which lower a person's security clearance, allowing them to serve in the army, but not in sensitive positions."




Unsurprisingly, Igor, Matan and thier friends do not approve of this IDF policy. They say the game is only a colorful, non-violent hobby.



"Many people who play served in the most classified units," David says. "They are intelligent and any attempt to label them as 'weird' is incorrect and unfair."



But in the struggle between the gameplayers and the Defense Minister, the latter wins - or at least this is the case in the real world of the IDF.

Source
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#85668 - 03/16/05 02:13 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
Creed Offline
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Registered: 05/21/04
Posts: 171
Loc: Behind You
Maybe they're afraid it would take too long to roll a 20 sided die to see if their attack was effective...and then have their foe roll a 7 sided die to see if their defense worked.
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#85669 - 03/16/05 02:17 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
Felstorm Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 1474
Loc: Minnesota.
Quote:

'The game indicates a weak personality'




This part tickled me pink.

I fail to see how a psychologist could call a person with an active imagination as having a "weak personality". Actors get paid millions of dollars to roleplay, or as they put it here, "dress up like witches and play in the forest", yet I somehow doubt that same IDF physician would tell us that actors have weak personalities.
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#85670 - 03/16/05 02:19 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Felstorm]
Svengali Offline
CoS Magister

Registered: 03/06/03
Posts: 12460
Loc: Florida, U.S.A.
Quote:

I fail to see how a psychologist could call a person with an active imagination as having a "weak personality". Actors get paid millions of dollars to roleplay, or as they put it here, "dress up like witches and play in the forest", yet I somehow doubt that same IDF physician would tell us that actors have weak personalities.




D&D players don't get paid millions of dollars.
_________________________
Live and Let Die.
"If I have to choose between defending the wolf or the dog, I choose the wolf, especially when he is bleeding." -- Jaques Verges
"I may have my faults, but being wrong ain't one of them." -- Jimmy Hoffa
"As for wars, well, there's only been 268 years out of the last 3421 in which there were no wars. So war, too, is in the normal course of events." -- Will Durant.
"Satanism is the worship of life, not a hypocritical, whitewashed vision of life, but life as it really is." -- Anton Szandor LaVey
“A membership ticket in this party does not confer genius on the holder.” -- Benito Mussolini
MY BOOK: ESSAYS IN SATANISM | MY BLOG: COSMODROMIUM | Deep Satanism Blog

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#85671 - 03/16/05 02:28 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
tovasshi Offline


Registered: 02/16/05
Posts: 1415
Loc: Banana, Canada
Its a game. Period. people read books to get lost in fantacy. People watch movies to get lost in fantacy. I see no problem with playing a game to get lost in fantacy. Its just a way to get away from it all. They're just not looking at other factors which causes these people to be so drawn out of reality.
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#85672 - 03/16/05 02:31 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
Trendkillers Offline


Registered: 03/12/05
Posts: 67
Yes, and neither would most actors make good military personnel.
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#85673 - 03/16/05 02:40 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: tovasshi]
Svengali Offline
CoS Magister

Registered: 03/06/03
Posts: 12460
Loc: Florida, U.S.A.
Quote:

Its a game. Period. people read books to get lost in fantacy. People watch movies to get lost in fantacy. I see no problem with playing a game to get lost in fantacy. Its just a way to get away from it all. They're just not looking at other factors which causes these people to be so drawn out of reality.




Most people that read books and watch movies for escape don’t sit around with their friends pretending to be the characters for hours on end.

D&D people are usually identifiable on sight, and almost always within minutes of their mouths running. There is a consistent aura of retardedness that clings to them like stale cigarette smoke. Only they are unaware of it.
_________________________
Live and Let Die.
"If I have to choose between defending the wolf or the dog, I choose the wolf, especially when he is bleeding." -- Jaques Verges
"I may have my faults, but being wrong ain't one of them." -- Jimmy Hoffa
"As for wars, well, there's only been 268 years out of the last 3421 in which there were no wars. So war, too, is in the normal course of events." -- Will Durant.
"Satanism is the worship of life, not a hypocritical, whitewashed vision of life, but life as it really is." -- Anton Szandor LaVey
“A membership ticket in this party does not confer genius on the holder.” -- Benito Mussolini
MY BOOK: ESSAYS IN SATANISM | MY BLOG: COSMODROMIUM | Deep Satanism Blog

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#85674 - 03/16/05 02:47 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Felstorm]
Abbott Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 04/05/02
Posts: 186
Loc: Atlantic City,NJ
They may have active imaginations, but are readily conformed into the model of mindless automatons, that popular society requires to keep the herd asleep, and subliminally programmed to buy "ACME" "insert product here". Actors, as just stated, also create/ produce something, not fit a bit part in a dice match, masturbatory ,circle- jerk marathon, to get illusions of temporary empowerment, and titles to wear next to their "good guy" badges.
Long Live Misanthropy
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#85675 - 03/16/05 03:14 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
Trendkillers Offline


Registered: 03/12/05
Posts: 67
Quote:


There is a consistent aura of retardedness that clings to them like stale cigarette smoke.




That's the greatest thing I've ever heard. You're my new hero.

"OMFG, I 4m l337 w17h my 13v31 12 5up3r 50rc3r3r!"

Fucking dolts.
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#85676 - 03/16/05 03:38 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
Drake_Bamboozle Offline
CoS Reverend

Registered: 06/25/02
Posts: 10573
Loc: England
Whichever way you look at it, it just aint right!


These people must be stopped!


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#85677 - 03/16/05 03:53 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
DancingintheDark Offline


Registered: 08/20/02
Posts: 745
This is really quite amusing. I must admit, I have always thought of serious D&D players to be "detached from reality" to some extent. This would probably be quite harmless in everyday society, but I can understand why the military would take a different view. And I doubt it is because the army generals and strategians feel threatened by the fantasy tactics of these would be wizards!
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#85678 - 03/16/05 04:13 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
reprobate Offline

CoS Warlock

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 7140
Loc: Canada
I used to play, a whiles back. As school became a bigger priority, I put it away. I still think about starting up again, when I have some free time and some people I think I could stand to play with.

See, most of the people who play this game are half-wits who live in an escapist fantasy world. Most.

On the other hand, most people who write "poetry" these days are also half-wits who live in an escapist fantasy world.

It all depends on who's playing, how they're playing, and what they're playing for. Not everyone who fits into a profile group is a stereotype. This kind of game draws a certain kind of loser, but that's not the only kind of person it can draw.

Actors go around for hours pretending to be other people. They do it privately and then they do it publically. Most do it for no money at all, in their spare time, because they like doing it. They do it because it's an exercise in experiencing perspectives, situations, and emotions other than what they would normally have "in real life" -- often because it involves fantasy elements (whether we're talking about Hamlet or No Exit). People read and write fiction for much the same reason (and roleplaying is sometimes called "collaborative fiction"), but drama is more involved, because you focus on the experience of being one character, and you say their dialogue. Now imagine people doing that privately, without props, mostly ad lib, with a focus on the lines and the plot development (rather than blocking, for example). Nothing inherently unhinged about that, now is there?

Now, if they become obsessed with the fantasy world, or with the stupid rules and all the numbers, then that becomes a problem. I can't stand those people. But they're not all there is to the player base of this kind of game. (Which I suspect is why about half of the people who go to the IDF shrinks are given okays for normal security clearance routines.)

The IDF's discrimination makes me wonder what kinds of other weirdos they're missing by not discriminating for other hobbies as well, or why all conscripts aren't given a psychological evaluation.


Edited by reprobate (03/16/05 05:47 PM)

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#85679 - 03/16/05 04:46 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: reprobate]
Wile_E_Quixote Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 03/14/02
Posts: 2493
I think the real point that can be distilled from both this and my recent post about Black Metal is: People are half-wits. If you judge activities by the calibre of the majority of people that partake in those activities then pretty much every hobby and interest is thoroughly damned.

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#85680 - 03/16/05 05:39 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Svengali]
CoffinRust Offline
CoS Priest

Registered: 01/07/03
Posts: 2137
Loc: Alabama
Quote:

It all depends on who's playing, how they're playing, and what they're playing for. Not everyone who fits into a profile group is a stereotype. This kind of game draws a certain kind of loser, but that's not the only kind of person it can draw.



Thank you, Reprobate.

I actually only played D&D once in high school, only because my circle of friends and I preferred the two Vampire games, The Masquerade and especially The Dark Ages (it was always fun for each of us to flex our knowledge of history, which sometimes led to interesting debates).

Quote:

“They're detached from reality and suscepitble to influence,” the army says.



Quote:

'The game indicates a weak personality'



Allow me to compare these quotes with my personal experience:

No one in my little group liked parties, did drugs or drank alcohol, due to lack of interest. All of the studying that high school required could be done before or after classes, and my friends and I each graduated with Advanced or Advanced with Honors Diplomas.

After school during the week we each indulged in our individual pursuits (mine involved reading non-school related books and drawing obsessively). I had an attractive girlfriend and frequently got laid. While I can’t speak for my friends concerning the latter, I do know that most of them maintained a girlfriend as well.

But on the weekends, playing RPGs was a lot of fun. Since we chose not to partake in typical teenage crap, and we managed to succeed in real-world endeavors just fine, playing RPGs was just a wonderful way to pass the time, have a ton of laughs and exercise the imagination (as well as my ego, since I’d draw everyone’s characters). When we weren’t playing RPGs, we were filming homemade horror movies and comedy sketches.

So, while I was never into D&D per se, I'm sure that the tired “weak-minded and pathetic” stereotype is applied to all RPG participants, but I can safely say that I’ve never fit it.



Addendum: I've never done LARP, all we ever played was Tabletop.


Edited by CoffinRust (03/16/05 10:55 PM)
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#85681 - 03/16/05 06:29 PM Re: IDF wise to D&D [Re: Wile_E_Quixote]
hickeyarmy Offline


Registered: 09/04/04
Posts: 93
Loc: US
It is a stupid little game. I don't find the problem with it, but rather with the fantasyland-at-all-times types. I tried this D&D game once when I was 12 and I was absolutely unimpressed. Yet I can imagine quite a few other things I would be concerned about regarding military clearances beside this game. A good example in the US military is the general policy of reconsidering a security clearance if the holder is having a recent credit problem. That makes a bit more sense to me pragmatically. And I totally agree with reprobate that a psych evaluation for all incoming troops is the least they can do before putting powerul weaponry in their hands, instead of selectively choosing only the obviously "weird" guys. I would go further to say before one attains a supervisory rank such as sergeant, another psych evaluation should be done. But this is all military business, and it will do as it pleases.
In Iraq, most of the soldiers wasted their time with video games...but a few read quite often, played their guitars and drums, produced hilarious comic reality-show style videos, discussed all manner of philosophy and religion topics, studied politics, and of course talked with family and friends on the phone. Even a few of us read the works of LaVey (I was soon loaning out my books constantly)! And we didn't miss the lack of contributions by the video game guys at all!
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