If you’ve been in this hobby for any length of time you have brushed up against its seedy, not so well hidden, underbelly. The toxic side of it all. The individuals and groups that use the worlds of Warhammer, along with the collecting and painting of miniatures as a vector to spread their bile.
It can range from an individual “That Guy” you encounter occasionally who is just horrible to play with due to a mix of their toxic views and unsporting behaviour. To those more organised groups that want to keep Warhammer in all its forms as a boys club. Doing what they can to chase away anyone who is not a straight-white-male from the hobby. Up until this week Games Workshop has never really commented on these sorts of hobbyists. Their silence often viewed as these toxic types being a necessary evil to the otherwise health life of the hobby.
Thankfully that is not the case!
The above statement was posted on the various Warhammer Community accounts around the internet this week. It’s message is clear, if you don’t want to play nice with others and see diversity as a positive thing both in terms of the people playing the game and the characters and stories within it. You can fuck off.
This naturally sent the vocal online Warhammer community on fire. A good 90% of posts I’ve seen about Games Workshop’s statement are positive. Or at least have a good job but you can do more vibe. Personally I want GW to use this a catalyst to increase their diversity efforts. The odd female Stormcast Eternal here or black Space Marine on the cover of a book there is not enough. That change is coming, I just want it to happen quicker.
The other 10% are a mix of those just trying to be edgy and those who are truly hateful people who want nothing more than to see certain groups not be a part of this hobby.
These are the people that can fuck off.
The events of the past two weeks have personally caused me to take stock of a lot of things. Mainly what I can do to promote equality in all aspects of my life. From family to work to my hobbies. I realised I’ve been part of the problem by not speaking up enough or at all when I see the toxic side of this hobby rear its ugly puss covered head.
That’s on me but we can all do more to make this hobby a better, safer and more open place for everyone who wants to enjoy it. You just have to live with the fallacy excluding those wanting to promote hate and intolerance. Something I am very happy to do if it makes things better for the greater good of all.
Black Lives Matter.