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The Munchkin

The Munchkin

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Published by Ali TekBoi
The title "munchkin" as refered to in table-top gaming.
The title "munchkin" as refered to in table-top gaming.

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Published by: Ali TekBoi on Jun 18, 2010
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved


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The Munchkin
´Munchkinµ is the proper term to refer to someone who tries to win a role-playing game. Itcan be expressed, displayed, or seen in an aggressively competitive style of play. For example,getting the most enemies killed or the most loot taken, all without any thoughts about role-playing,a storyline, fairness, logic and, the most importantly, other players' fun.The term is used either as a negative label (for example, to an immature powergamer) or in ahumorous or sarcastic context (like in "oh, what a munchkin you are, having 6d6 unarmeddamage!").Originally, the term was taken from The Wizard of Oz where Munchkins were short andridiculous creatures. It was used by older players to address their childish comrades. However,before long it came to refer to anyone who engaged in a juvenile gaming style regardless of their height, age or experience. The term has been in use dating back as far as 1984.Munchkins are infamous for various degrees of cheating, willfully misinterpreting rules thatwork against them while loudly proclaiming ones that work in their favor. As a matter of coursethey selectively obey the letter of rules while perverting the spirit blatantly. The worst munchkinswill cheat shamelessly, ignoring inconvenient numerical modifiers and fouling dice throws till theyget the result they want. During character creation, munchkins engage in vicious min-maxing,leading to exceptionally unrealistic or unusual characters that make no sense except in terms of raw power.Munchkins are often accused of ´roll-playingµ, a pun on the word 'role' that notes howmunchkins are often more concerned with the numbers and die ´rollsµ rather than with the rolesthat they play.A more neutral use of the term does in reference to novice players, who, not know yet howto roleplay, typically obsess about the statistical "power" of their characters rather thandeveloping their characters' personalities.The term has gained popularity through the ´Munchkinµ card-game series. Originallypublished in 2001, the main game along with its many expansions and spin-offs offers playersincentives to lower their friends· levels, legally cheating and stealing, and eventually ´winningµ thegame once said player reaches level 10. The rules of the game even state, "Any disputes in therules should be settled by loud arguments with the owner of the game having the last word."
Such an attitude of valuing the improvement of the character's gear and stats over storytelling and immersion has also built its roots in computer games and MMORPGs.
: (n) Often used derogatorily, the term is given to one of the known five types of table-top RPG gamers.The other four being: Real Man, Thespian, Brain, and Loony. These gamers often play D&D (Dungeons & Dragons).

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