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Web Video / The Gamers: Humans & Households

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Four apparent grown-ups sit in a cellar, roll dice, and argue with the Game Master over the rules. Sounds familiar? ...except the four gamers are The Archmage, a Knight in Shining Armor, a royal councilor, and a high-profile spy from the world of Fartherall; their GM is an Evil Chancellor; and they're playing Humans & Households—a game of personal powerlessness and existential horror.

Humans & Households is a three-part Web Video mini-series Kickstarted along with The Gamers: Natural One in 2013 by the creators of The Gamers film series (of which it is a spin-off) and released in 2014 on their YouTube channel.

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Tropes found in this mini-series include:

  • Big "NO!": The party gives us a collective slo-mo one when they have to leave Billgate behind.
  • Bland-Name Product: Humans & Households is obviously a Fantasy Counterpart and a parody of Dungeons & Dragons.
  • Bluffing the Authorities: When the party accidentally trips an alarm while trying to sneak into their friend's house, Flex manages to bluff his way past the police officer by activating the "White Privilege" perk.
  • Canada, Eh?: Candy explains why she took Canadian as her race:
    Candy: Well, mainly the charisma bonus. And the health care...clean air...pristine beauty...actually representative parliamentary system... (Flex and Moonray turn their backs and walk off.) Abundant water and energy resources. Cold resistance 10. Bonus language: French. We're still respected around the world.
    (Offstage gunshot. Moonray screams.)
    Flex: Sorry.
    Moonray: Son of a...!
    Candy: (readying a bandage) Sane gun laws.
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  • Comically Missing the Point: After discovering a note from Steve that asks them to take care of Steve's dog—whom they've just brutally killed— an awkward silence sets in, and you assume it's because the party realizes how much they screwed up...and then Moonray declares that the note is too straightforward, so it must be fake, while Flex suggest searching the upper floors for the answers. Yeah, they never gave it a second thought, they were just trying to break the "riddle".
  • Eagleland: Apparently, anyone who takes American as their character's race in H&H automatically gets a handgun or two—but not the skills to wield them.
  • Erudite Stoner: Moonray's various "aura" abilities seem to boil down to different kinds of joints, but he has the best Knowledge checks of the entire party.
  • Face Palm: The Host does one when Flex activates this (extremely broken) "White Privilege" feat.
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  • Fantastic Fantasy Is Mundane: Most movies concern Real Life gamers playing fantasy RPGs. This one concerns fantasy heroes playing an RPG set in Real Life.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble:
    • Flex is the Choleric, constantly driving the party onwards.
    • Candy is the Sanguine, being the most personable member.
    • Billgate is the Melancholic, being a hyperactive dork.
    • Moonray is the Phlegmatic, urging caution and offering advice.
  • Game Master: The Host runs the game.
  • Glasses Pull: Candy does it after "diagnosing" a car and exclaiming "Oh My Gods!", as does Moonray before revealing his daring plan to defeat the Guardian.
  • Guns Akimbo: Billgate discovers she has had a pair of guns all along and proceeds to empty them into the air around the dog.
  • Hollywood Hacking: The Rogue seems to think that hacking in H&H works similarly to lock-picking, so the Host has to keep reminding her that she cannot hack anything that doesn't run on electricity (like a mailbox).
  • Knight in Shining Armor: The Warrior, who keeps spouting bold and heroic lines in- and out-of-character.
  • The Loonie: Rogue, who, upon discovering a potion in game, immediately has her character drink it, without a thought about the consequences.
  • The Medic: Candy, as a nurse, has some healing abilities.
  • Outside-the-Box Tactic: Failing to take out Steve's dog with conventional tactics, the party lures it onto the road, where it is hit by a car.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Just why exactly are a nurse, a hockey star, an environment activist, and a dorky computer geek hanging out together?
  • Real World Episode: Of The Gamers series. Kinda. Sort of...ish. Most movies concern Real Life gamers playing fantasy RPGs. This one concerns fantasy heroes playing an RPG set in Real Life.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Famous!: Flex's "White Privilege" feat lets him draw upon his hockey star fame to get away with breaking-and-entering. Furthermore, being an athlete, he mentions being immune to prosecution, but only for murder and sexual assault.
  • Shout-Out: The resident computer geek is named Billgate.
  • Spoony Bard: What Moonray's role boils down to this: he is pretty much useless to the party except for making Knowledge checks and giving advice. He even admits that "it's an underpowered class".
  • Unconventional Alignment: H&H has alignments like Liberal Honest (Candy), Conservative Oblivious (Flex), True Oblivious (Billgate), and Liberal Asshole (Moonray). These seem to correspond to Chaotic Good, Lawful Neutral, True Neutral, and Chaotic Evil, respectively.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Disturbingly averted: the party antagonizes their friend's dog (whom he asked them to look after, no less) and lures it out of the house to be hit by a car and presumably killed—and no one calls them out on it, except the in-universe car's unseen driver. This is an intentional parody of how some gamers play to win without considering the moral implications of their in-game actions.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: The player characters are only in danger due to their own actions and ignorance of the setting. The actual situation poses no threat whatsoever, and appears to have been meant as setting up the actual quest. Which is also in no way dangerous.

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