A new reason to not use Discord


Richard Stallman once wrote several reasons to not use Discord. Due to its use of Unreal Engine 4, Total Rendition may still yet be far away from realising rms' dreams, although it does give rms another reason he can state why YOU should not use Discord!

At one point, I had planned to release Total Rendition on Discord. This will not occur, for one because Discord now requires new games to be hosted on Discord servers. This is probably too much of a hassle for most gamers, even compared to itch.io. All in all, my experience with using Discord as a channel to promote Total Rendition has been overwhelmingly negative. Indeed, I have come to think Discord kinda sucks.

Yet, perhaps all of the incidents I have mentioned are by design and not some isolated incidents: Discord, like Twitter, normalises rudeness. No, not the grumpiness I may be exhibiting: No, truly rude behaviour! Total Rendition's Discord server pretty much has succumbed to trolling. One devteam member left, in part because of Discord trolling by Paul Edwards. However, it hasn't stopped there. A user named PPD started publishing Tory propaganda memes (no joke! It seems Boris Johnson has his own army of social media trolls)! One user claimed to offer funding for Total Rendition, only to give me vague guidance and the message that it is unlikely I will succeed. Well, very motvating, exactly for which I have joined Discord for...

Discord's normalisation of rudeness isn't readily apparent until you start examining the UI design. For example, Total Rendition seems to be acquired taste and very slow to process. Which is okay, I want Total Rendition to be like a 1990s/early 2000s style game. recycling game design paradigms which Facebook and Twitter seem to have made unpopular by making short-attention spans mainstream. However, Discord is designed for the Twitter zeitgeist: Your screenname is reprinted every time you type in a message which hasn't been answered immediately yet is typed a certain amount of time after your previous message, while your characters are limited as on Twitter, although not to the same extreme degree. This causes Discord's UI and UX to frame users who write complex thoughts to appear pedantic and socially awkward, although don't be fooled: This is framing! A different platform might have the entire opposite effect. However, Discord tries to create sadistic enjoyment from banning users by showing Chris Hemsworth playing Thor.

Not that I have anything against Mr. Hemsworth or Marvel comics, although I do have something against Discord for employing their imagery as such. Yeah, I know, Banhammer, although it isn't something to be taken lightly. Obviously, I have banned users using Discord (how else would I know about this) although I figured I might just have escaped from entering a psychic sinkhole. And to be frank, Clyde really seems to be a psychic vampire!

While some may claim that Gabe Newell does nothing except eating sandwiches, Steam hasn't harmed my mental health nor Total Rendition's development that much, so I guess Total Rendition will be on Steam at some point. Like Itch.io, Steam only sells games and has the admirable additional goal of bringing you Linux gaming, although some more love for FOSS would definitely be a plus. Likewise, while Schizotypy's relations with Epic Games are complex (not in the least part because while Total Rendition uses Unreal Engine 4, I absolutely hate Fortnite), I understand that Total Rendition selling itself on the Epic Games Store can hardly be the worst instance of capitalism. However, if Total Rendition is sold on Discord, it will end up promoting a chat application that causes mental health problems by design and entrenches all the horrible aspects of Twitter: So, sod off Clyde!

Unfortuantely, while Total Rendition's Discord server is now offline for good, Discord is still giving me trouble deleting my own account with the excuse I'm "being rate-limited" (which is hardly a thing in the UK, and I do not living in the Highlands or in Uganda). Unfortunately for them, they can't rate-limit my indignation!

-Mordechai Gabai

Upcoming: The process of building level transitions

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