Wednesday, October 23, 2013


At least I know my moral position is beyond question: YDIS.

If anyone has any suggestions ...


Tiffany said...

Ignorant, irrelevant bastard - not worth the air you breathe...

Anonymous said...

There was a time when I followed and even linked to YDIS, but those days are long over. In fact, I wouldn't even have seen this had you not pointed it out, so if you want my advice take this down and stop giving the assholes the satisfaction.

Had you not put yourself out there and were you not worth taking swipes at this wouldn't have happened... but then again a lot of really great stuff wouldn't have either.

Jhandar said...

I am having a very hard time coming up with any sort of response that can encapsulate the entirety of my emotional reaction to the YDIS post. I also understand that you, Alexis, are not out here for the adulation and ego stroking roar of the digital crowd, which is in part why I do not post on your site much, if at all.

I also understand and can appreciate your pending sabbatical in November. If anyone deserves one, it is you.

That being said, I would like to speak to the value of this blog and yourself. While I know you are not in this for an ego boost, and I recognize that 'our relationship' is purely unrequited, I would like to step on my little soap box and speak of the impact your blog, and by proxy you yourself, have had to me.

I don't know how or why, but many years ago (in early 2010) I came across your blog as the result of a singular search for a D&D blog to read. How you were the first result I pulled from a hat, I don't rightfully know, and I cannot recall any particular recommendation of your blog. But I was immediately impressed. I had been self-directing my GMing style along a similar vein, however it was like a mathematician stumbling on an unknown cohort unknowingly working on the same problem yet years ahead in their research and findings.

I was mesmerized and can honestly say I have read every single post you have written. I donated some money to the endeavors and you even answered several questions that I had put to you via email on the forum (Spell Gathering, All The Magic In The World, and Keep 'Em Hungry circa May 2010), which I appreciated.

However, since that day, I tend to check the blog each morning prior to going to work and look forward to the offerings that you provide. I rarely post, hence the unrequited part, but that should not be an indication of the amount of value that you provide to me at least.

I argue with you in my head, pound out pages of text and charts trying to better myself based on the bar that you have set and continue to raise. In many aspects I do not have the discipline that you do, often times hopping settings and rule systems to dabble here and there. However, I am, and have been devoted to trying to create 'my world' and emulating as much of your ideas and ideals as possible because they are what I would want to see in a world. As a case in point, I am/was quite literally looking up various types of stones that can be quarried and corresponding gemstone appearances in an effort to emulate your trading/item availability spread sheets. (Btw a brilliant system, but Damn you Sir, this is a ludicrous amount of work.)

Since finding Tao, I have looked at more blogs related to our shared craft. The vast majority of which are utter disappointments. Feel free to insert the obvious analogy of fires and darkness. But more importantly, please don't let those troglodytes at YDIS win/besmirch/taunt/dent/or affect you in any way!

I can understand burn out, it has happened to me on several occasions. And now that my toe is dipped in the waters of the details of the world you create in my so far feeble attempts to replicate it, I understand exhaustion too. But this blog is in many ways a symbol; the promise that games can be better.

At this point I think I have just devolved into rambling. However, November will be a long and dark month.

Charles Akins said...

He's just an old fashioned troll that hides behind the internet, you know, a fuck-head.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Oh, I feel very little about this.

James, you have to understand - this is something I am experiencing; and like my world and other details about my life, I want my readers to know what I'm experiencing.

I don't feel ashamed. I will save my shame for things I've actually done. I'm faultless here, and there isn't a person reading this blog who doesn't know it.

Jhandar, thank you for all the praise. It's appreciated, and not because of when it comes, but because it has come at all. I am always grateful to know I am influencing others. Keep on with that ludicrous level of work. It has its unseen rewards.

morepages said...

As a high school English teacher, I have a few things to say:

1. Even my worst-behaved 14-year olds know better than the way the children on that site treat you. I'm just disappointed, and sad for them.

2. I learn something when I read your blog posts. About the game (which I was also disappointed with until I read your blog and saw what it could be), about the world, and even about teaching. Being a teacher isn't so different from being a DM: you are managing the behavior and experiences of people who know a lot less than you do about the situation, or creating systems which encourage them to manage themselves. Several times, I've used your insights about player motivation, imagination, etc in my classroom.

3. All of your posts are well-written and thoughtful (the English teacher in me coming out).

I know you said you aren't fishing for compliments, but I've been reading for awhile now and might as well say it:

I learn a LOT from you; and anyone who can teach me deserves a huge thank you. So thank you.

Timothy Brannan said...

Once YDIS used to be interesting as a satire site, but now it is just lowest common denominator drivel.

JDJarvis said...

The middleschool bathroom wall scrawlers and the chortling crap-flingers are easy to beat. Doing better isn't a chore. Doing better than you yourself do is the challenge.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Helping to teach children ... that is a most encouraging comment!

Dave Cesarano said...

Arriving to this whole affair late. However, instead of echo previous commentators, I'll just say, "What Jhandar and morepages said."

Aside from Justin Alexander's blog (, this is the only truly worthwhile blog on D&D or gaming in general that I get so much real, intelligent, and analytical discussion. Keep it up.