Dinner Party (2020)
Where are we going?
To see Sue.
She's our community manager.
The direct interface between us and the players.
My ears just popped.
Yeah, we're pretty deep underground.
It's just better for everyone if she's down here.
It's a difficult job.
Dealing with angry feedback, complaints and hate.
She must be super depressed.
No. That would be normal. This is much worse.
David, it is so nice to see you.
And who's this bag of sunshine you brought with you?
This is my assistant, Jo.
-Say hi, Jo. -Hi.
Well, thanks for popping by, guys.
I would love to come visit you upstairs, but my darn key card isn't working and I tried talking to security about it, but they--
Listen to me blabbing on, boring you to tears.
Whoa. Okay, come on. Sit down. Sit.
I don't like her. She's unsettling.
Catching up on a little bit of filing?
This? No, that's just some player feedback.
E-mail has filters that censor the more descriptive language.
But God bless America, you still can't censor the handwritten word.
Right. So, Sue, you said you had some urgent news?
I sure do. I got a call this morning from Kotaku.
They are running a front-page article about MQ and asked for us to comment.
"Front-page"? Not too shabby. That's good news. What's the story?
Well, apparently Mythic Quest is the number one online role-playing game...
...among white supremacists.
Okay, listen up, everyone. Important announcement up here.
Big boss talking to her team. Today's a big day.
Today is the day that we launch our newest and, if I do say so myself, most beautifully designed new social networking feature.
A lot of hard work has gone into this and now all that's left to do... is hit this button.
Where is Ian? Doesn't he usually do the speech?
Yes, Michelle, he does.
But I'm doing this one because after the whole shovel thing, Ian finally agreed to let me have something that's mine.
And that thing is Dinner Party.
It just seems like a natural clapping mo-- Whatever.
Just don't interrupt.
So Ian didn't help.
That's why the name's so confusing.
It's not confusing, Michelle.
What else would you call a feature that allows players to connect across guilds and plan large-scale events?
Have you ever been to a dinner party?
Can you please stop being so negative and don't interrupt anymore?
I'm just gonna skip to the end. Let's launch!
And here we go.
Poppy, David would like to see you. It's an emergency.
I'm kind of in the middle of something, Jo.
He said if you don't come, I can grab you by the hair and drag you.
-David said that? -That was the subtext.
-Just tell David I'm very busy. -Doing what?
Pushing a button.
-It's more than just a button, Michelle. -This button?
Godda-- I just-- This was, like-- You ruined it.
Great speech, boss.
Oh, my God. Jo, what could possibly be so urgent?
We have Nazis in the game?
Kotaku found a guild of 40 or so members who openly profess to playing our game according to fascist principles.
Okay, hold on.
People use that word to mean "anyone who disagrees with them."
How can we be sure that these are actual Nazis?
Well, they did this with the shovel.
Yeah, those are Nazis.
This is not what the shovel is meant for. It was made to murder people.
And dig dicks.
They did that too.
Say what you want about Nazis. They are precise.
That's German engineering.
Oh, man. This is so upsetting.
This whole Nazi thing is going to completely overshadow Dinner Party.
Guys, can we please focus on the Nazis?
'Kay? We gotta get rid of the Nazis.
Perhaps we're being too hasty.
Nazis make excellent villains.
Have we considered embracing the Nazis, narratively speaking?
No. No, we haven't. We're not embracing Nazis.
We are kicking them out of the guild and that's the end of discussion.
C.W., I need you to draft an apology. Immediately.
Now, are we apologizing to the Nazis or on their behalf?
Okay. You know what? I'm going to go kick out the Nazi guild.
Wait, wait. What are we gonna do about Dinner Party?
No one's going to care about Dinner Party, but we can't just kick out the Nazis.
That's going to be a whole First Amendment thing.
Let me noodle on it.
David. D-train. Dirty Dave.
Maybe we should think this Nazi thing through.
I don't wanna spin you out here, David, but I think we should slow this down.
-I'm banning the Nazis, Brad. -Hey, I respect that.
But we've never banned an entire group before.
These are paying customers.
Gross, Brad, even for you.
Hey, I'm just saying, we got to be careful how we respond.
Sure, we created the platform, but should we be the ones deciding who stays and who goes?
It's the same problem that Facebook and Twitter had to deal with.
Hey, look, somebody has to put their foot down.
I agree, but let's think about this.
What's it going to look like when people find out that foot belongs to a straight white man writing the laws that everyone has to live by?
Does that seem fair? Does that seem inclusive?
Okay, see ya.
Wait. Brad? I want to be more inclusive.
We should consult some diverse perspectives, like you.
What do you mean?
Well, you know, 'cause you're... Can I say "Indian"?
Well, why can't you say it?
I don't know. I mean, I--
-What's wrong with being Indian? -Nothing.
I'm also Polish, if that's better for you.
I mean, yes. Or... I don't know.
I'm just trying to do what's right here.
Will you please help me? Please?
We can form an ethics committee. Make the decisions together.
Okay. A committee.
And you know what? We should get some girls involved.
That felt weird. Listen.
Brad and I are putting together a little ethics committee.
And, Dana, we would love to have your unique... perspective?
So, will you join us?
Could I join? I would really love to help any way I can.
What do I say here?
It's just your perspective has been... filled.
Yeah, we don't need two white chicks.
No, Jo. That's not even it.
Okay? It's not a racial thing. It's more of a... She's...
-Annoying. -Can you say that?
That's totally fine.
-I'm annoying? -Yes.
So, Dana, do you want to get going?
-Right now? -Yeah. Let's go.
You are? I mean, of course, you are.
Not "of course." I mean, that's great.
Yes. That is my unique perspective. I am a lesbian.
We could use one of those.
"One of those"? This is going well.
No, no. It's still not right. It needs to be higher and straighter.
You know, usually at this point, Poppy jumps in and takes over.
Well, I'm not going to allow that to happen, okay, Michelle?
Because I need you to do it. I work through you.
Okay. It's like I'm an artist and you're my favorite brush.
What are you doing down here?
I'm trying to manipulate Michelle into doing what I want.
-Is she doing a bad job? -Yeah, she sucks.
Yeah, she's terrible at her job.
Get up, Michelle. Move your arse. Come on. Up, up. Thank you.
-What's the problem? -Yeah, you see right here.
I need to get that up higher and then more of an extension and straight.
You just need to adjust a couple of the keyframes on the animation and...
-Look at that! -Yeah.
You're the best! Look at how--
-That's perfect. -I know because--
-You're my favorite brush. -That's right. I am your--
-Oh, my God. Is that a... -Yeah. A Nazi salute.
Yeah. I really want to get him heiling Hitler.
It's all a part of my plan to smoke them out.
You see, we're going to release the emote, but then publicly say it's a glitch.
But these skinhead freaks, they're not going to be able to resist.
They're going to pass it amongst their friends, and then they're going to come out of the shadows.
This is insane.
I think it's awesome.
Okay, so she thinks it's good. What does that tell you?
Nazi emotes, secret plans, rounding them up.
Can you hear yourself?
No. But I wish I could.
We should be recording this for posterity.
-I am recording this. -Cool. Send it to me.
Stop recording. Put that away.
Listen, you are not in the right headspace to be making decisions like this.
And also, I already have a better plan.
We're going to organize a peaceful protest using...
And that way, we show the Nazis that they're not welcome in MQ while simultaneously, yet tastefully, promoting my feature.
So you want to use the Nazis to promote your feature?
I tried telling her that.
She's very stubborn, Michelle.
Okay, screw you both.
Going to do it myself. I don't need you. You're uninvited to the protest.
Okay, Michelle. Let's get back to work.
My work or your work?
Dear my, you are salty.
Welcome to the first meeting of the ethics committee.
I feel like we got a good mix of people here.
Should we go around and say what we are?
-Let's not do that. -No? Okay.
So, our first order of business is we need to come up with a code of conduct.
See, the problem is, we don't know which rules the Nazis are violating because we don't have any rules.
So, let's make some. Easy.
As long as we're consistent.
Once we start banning groups, it's a bit of a slippery slope.
Well, how's this for consistent? "No hate groups."
I don't want to spin you out here, David, but what is a hate group?
I mean, do homophobes count?
Yes. They hate gay people.
-What about misogynists? -Yes. They hate women.
-Pedophiles? -Sure. They hate...
Are pedophiles really a problem in the game?
No, no. But let's make sure they don't become one, right?
Sorry. I guess I'm just a little... confused because--
Because you said that you were gay. And if you're not gay, you have to leave.
I'm gay. I am a proud gay woman.
I just don't understand what we're doing here.
Okay. Rachel, can you just... turn the volume down? Only a little bit?
We're all proud here.
Brad is a proud Indian Polish man. Did you know that? Right, Brad?
And Jo, she's a proud...
Wholesome Midwestern conservative.
And I'm a proud white man, but I don't go around saying "white pride."
-David. -Sorry. That's not what I meant.
I said I didn't say that. Anyway, pedophiles make the list.
Way to go, Jo.
Man, we are cooking with gas.
Yeah. Great, yeah.
Maybe a little bit more shading in here and a little bit more angular down here.
My presence was requested?
Yes. C.W., now about that apology--
Just finished it and I'm quite pleased. It's conciliatory without seeming weak.
I adapted it from a previous apology I gave to the San Diego Women's Museum.
Yeah. Change of plans though. We are now going to embrace the Nazis.
-Wonderful. I'll get on it right away. -Great.
Hi there. Sorry to bug ya.
But I couldn't help but notice that those darn Nazis are still in the game.
Don't worry, Sue. I've been working on a patch that's going to fix everything.
A patch to block the Nazis?
No. A patch to wear on their uniforms.
You know, I think there might be a smudge on my lens, 'cause that looks an awful lot like the SS symbol.
Well, not officially though.
No. Publicly we'll say that it's just like black lightning or something like that.
But the Nazis are going to love this.
They are going to adopt this, trust me. Trust me, the Nazis will love it.
Thank you, Rio.
Okay. Yeah. So--
You seem to be adding more Nazi stuff.
And what we need to be doing is subtracting Nazi stuff.
'Cause we really want zero Nazis.
Zero is our target number of Nazis.
But the best way to catch a Nazi is with a little bit of honey.
No, no. It can't take that long.
It has to end today, Ian. Okay?
It's got to end today or else there's going to be another Kotaku article and it's going to get real bad.
As bad as the Nazi alchemist who used his skills to concoct a potion which wiped out an entire race of dark elves?
No, no. Is that in the game too?
No, but it could be.
And what an engaging story that would be.
Gosh. Feels like I'm just herding cats here.
Which, if it's on the weekend, I usually enjoy.
-Okay. Thanks, Sue. Thank you. -Ian, don't mute me.
Let's put it to a vote. All those in favor of banning coastal elites from the game.
And all those in favor of manspreaders.
Well, there it is. It's settled.
Coastal elites stay in the game.
Hey, C.W., did you finish that apology?
Yes, yes. What's this meeting about? Why wasn't I invited?
I demand the right to defend myself.
This meeting isn't about you.
Although, wait. You do bring a different generational perspective.
And that could add to the diversity of the committee, right, Brad?
Yeah, man. Okay. Have a seat.
I have an opening in my schedule. Catch me up.
Okay. Well, we've compiled a list of all the groups that we could potentially ban in addition to the Nazis.
And, well, it turned out to be a lot.
92% of our players.
Yeah. Obviously, we can't kick them all out, because then we wouldn't have a game.
So, we needed a quick way to whittle it down to the worst offenders.
But we came up with a system.
Well, the NCAA came up with it, but Brad suggested it for us.
-Marvelous. -Hey, David.
-How much longer is this meeting gonna go? -We're almost done.
Yeah. Just 63 quick decisions and we're outta here.
Sixty-two. Manspreaders on the board.
See if you move to here and I go...
Hey, y'all. Poppy Li here. Lead engineer at Mythic Quest.
Oh, God. What are you doing?
I know what you might all be thinking, "This Poppy Li, she seems pretty cool."
But you know what's not cool?
This is painful.
Wouldn't it be great if there was a way that we could all get together and celebrate our hatred of fascism?
-Oh, God. Don't do it. -Introducing...
-Don't do it. -Dinner Party.
She did the hands.
And today I'm going to use Dinner Party to invite you all to a peaceful protest.
Let's show those inbred Nazi chuds that there is no place for them here at MQ.
Using the very intuitive mechanics of DP is simple, easy and fun!
DP? Don't call it "DP."
So, look out for that invite and keep your inbox open in the future for some sweet DP action.
Oh, dear God.
You've joined a Dinner Party.
Wow. This is the coolest thing ever.
Hundreds of people gathered together for peace.
I added a little music to set the mood.
I know that some of you thought that Dinner Party wasn't going to be a success.
I'm happy to say that you were wrong, Michelle.
Hey, Michelle. You were wrong, and I was right.
So cool it with the online shopping.
Actually, I'm watching this.
That Nazi guild used Dinner Party to join up with a bunch of other guilds to form some kind of massive raiding party.
Whatever. Can you just turn that off?
I don't want to watch the Nazis. I want to focus on the protest.
They're going to the protest.
-What? -Here. I'll throw it up there for you.
They have their own music.
See, these guys are sitting there quietly, completely defenseless, whereas these guys are armed to the teeth.
Now, why would someone bring weapons to a peaceful protest?
Guess we're about to find out.
Maybe I can reason with them.
This is a peaceful gathering!
Come on, guys.
Why are you doing this?
Oh, my God.
What a great Dinner Party.
Poppy! Pop-Tarts. Pop--
Poppy, I saw the raid. It was awesome.
Don't rub it in.
Dinner Party is a huge flop. I'm just going to kill it.
-No. No, Poppy. You can't do that. -Bugger off.
Pop, you don't understand. You are a genius.
You were able to accomplish something that I couldn't do all day long.
You drew them out.
So, now, instead of there being, like, 40 Nazis, there's 4,000 Nazis in the game.
-Yeah. It's super cool. -Is it?
Yes! Yes, because we drew them out from the shadows.
So, I guess now you can go murder them all or punch their mums or whatever it is you're going to do.
No. Poppy, you don't understand.
Violence is not the answer.
Violence is always your answer. You have a battle-ax in your office.
Violence is very oftentimes the best answer.
But not when you're dealing with Nazis.
Although, historically, that has been the best method to deal with Nazis.
I think that's with most people, you should be using violence--
But this is different, all right?
Nazis want us to punch them in the face. It makes them stronger.
It gives them something to fight against.
So we're going to do something much, much worse.
Okay. We have an answer.
It's Nazis. Fuck.
It's literally the same thing we started the day with.
But you know what? We got there the right way, and that's what's important.
And I learned that when it comes to making decisions--
What's the expression? "There's more than one way to skin a cat"?
"Skin a cat."
I don't want to spin you out here, David, but animal abusers, we forgot about them.
-Let's put them on the board. -No, no, no.
We do not want PETA coming after our asses.
No! No, Brad.
I know what you're doing, and it's going to stop now.
We have found the solution! This is it!
Ethics Committee dismissed.
All right. Good night.
-All right. Check it out, check it out. -Yes, yes, yes.
Hey. There you are. Great news.
After a lot of careful consideration, I've finally made my decision.
We are kicking out the Nazis.
We already handled the Nazis.
What? They're still in the game. There's, like, a million of them.
We tied all their accounts to an isolated server.
It's kind of brilliant.
This way they can spew their bullshit all day long and there's no one there to hear it.
But they're still fighting and shouting abuse.
I mean, don't they know they're alone?
Nope. It's an echo chamber. A Nazi echo chamber.
It's a prison.
One where they can do what they do, but to each other.
-Shut up, you cuck. -You're the cuck!
-Go back to your country. -My blood's pure.
And we got all of them. Every single one of them.
And it's all because of Poppy's feature, Dinner Party.
-You did the hands. Yes. -Of course I did the hands. Hands.
What "the hands"?
-David, stop trying to get into our thing. -It's kind of an "in" thing.
-Get into us. -Whatever. I don't care.
I'm just glad the day is over.
Hey, here's a fun riddle.
If a Nazi digs a swastika in the forest and no one's around to see it, does it really matter?
Nope. It doesn't.
Can I get some wine?
Yes. Sit down.
Wine, food, conversation amongst friends.
One might almost call this a dinner party.
-Hey! Poppy's first dinner party! -Look at that!
-We all know I've been to a bunch. -Cool.
I'm going to pull out the spreadsheet for the gift exchange.
Yeah. She's never been to a dinner party. This is her first one.
-This is her first one. That's so sad. -Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely.