Remember When: Gamers Played Games, Not Just Watched Videos?

Before we start this whole poop-storm, let me explain something. There are a lot of people out there that feel just because they sit down and watch gaming videos, from actual plays to gaming advice videos that they are suddenly expert gamers. These people then go out, claiming they are part of the gaming community and now gamers. Hate to break it to you, but:

NO, YOU ARE NOT, you are a FAN of gaming.

Sure now you are getting all annoyed, but here let me help you get even more annoyed as I define the terms for you.

 First, let’s DEFINE the word “Gamer”.

According to, it says as follows:

Notice that definition says WHO PLAYS, not watch, not sit on the sidelines, PLAYS.

Let’s look at another word, Fan:

Notice this is defined as strong interest or admiration for. 

This is what people who watch videos on YouTube such as Critical Role or Dice, Camera, Action! or listen to their favorite actual play podcast are when they don’t play the game. FANS.

Until you sit down and play in a session of Dungeons & Dragons, Mutants and Masterminds or even Pathfinder, you are just a fan, nothing more.

Can you provide advice? No, no you can’t. You do not have the experience of game time under your belt to provide gaming advice to PLAYERS of the GAME, so please stop doing it.

Think of it this way.

You enjoy your favorite comic book, you really enjoy the drawings in the comic BUT you’ve never drawn a single thing in your life or you’ve never drawn anything for a commission or public display.

Do you have the right to tell that comic book artist how to draw that comic book character? Nope.

SO until you start picking up that pencil, start sketching out drawings and offer those drawings up to for sale, you can’t say jack.

Are you part of the gaming community? no, you are a fan of the community.

Gamers are the ones who play the game.

Fans are ones who watch or admire the ones who play the games.

Plain and simple, cut and dry. 

Now knock it off.

Vince The Evil DM

Raised in the '80s and enjoys all RPGs, DC Comics and movies that don't push agendas. The Evil DM is an Ennie Award winning writer that has over 25 years of experience in tabletop gaming, is the host of various RPG Podcasts, including Roll for Initiative and Roll High or Die! He also has his own youtube channel where he hosts gaming advice for the OSR Movement.