Alpha, Beta, Ethos, Pathos, Logos


Beta game

In my first post on the Aristotle’s 3 parts of rhetoric, I explained how any communication consists of a mix of 3 elements. Ethos, the character and credibility of a speaker, pathos the emotion and psychology of a speaker, and logos the reasoned argument of a speaker according to Aristotle’s rhetoric. For communication purposes, this means a 3 prong model, where the logos consists of the message that the speaker wishes to communicate, the ethos his credibility, and pathos how he communicates it to an audience.

In an analysis of modern narratives and discourse, telling rhetoric from propaganda is difficult, never more so than between the male and female genders. A common statement is that men communicate information, women communicate emotion. Thus, one could argue that female communication is biased towards pathos, while male communication is inherently biased towards logos. Ethos, is relevant for both genders, men in terms of gauging how credible a speaker’s logos is, for women the social status and psychology of the speaker.

Much has been said about game, but many times “game” is defined as “alpha game” and men attempting to adopt alpha game to have more success with women, rather than game being a system of thought including behaviors, world perception, self-perception and many other things that exist in various ways.

For the purpose of this article, “Game” is defined as “A sexual strategy employed by a person or persons in order to achieve a goal

The Beta Game

The Beta game, or provider game consists of using primarily logos in behavior and speech in order to convince a woman to either enter a long term relationship or to have sex with the Beta. Many Beta men use external validators (clothing, property, job titles) superficially as ethos (to establish social proof) and supplication to draw out desired emotions (pathos). Taking into account the current cultural narrative, one could argue that men are subtly trained into become beta males. If one looks at the mainstream communication regarding relationships in popular culture, one could point out that the narrative within romantic comedies, often follows the female 10, who after going through a string of alpha fux, relationships, finally realizes that her shoulder to cry on throughout the movie, is the love of her life.

Even in their most evolved forms, the beta game is centered on a valid chain of reasoning, that I described in depth in the article “Grounded theory and the PUA community

The chain of reasoning goes (short version):

Major premise: Women are attracted to nice, stable guys

Minor premise: I demonstrate how nice and stable I am.

Conclusion: Therefore women should be attracted to me.

Where the Beta got the information that underlie this valid, but unsound chain of reasoning can be left up to debate and many people have written articles on it. However, the Beta is running this game as a sexual strategy under the belief that it works, and thus his rhetoric is perfectly suited for his beliefs.

He is trying to convince by argument the female of the species to give it up for a man who by his information “hits all the targets” that the social narrative has told him to hit. Beta reasoning is driven by logos, his pathos and ethos merely servants to his ultimate communication: “I am a high status male because of X“. This would work with other men, because as a gender we are generally fact and logic driven. It does not work with women, because women do not respond to logos, they respond to Ethos and Pathos. This approach is very typical of the male approach to problem-solving, identify the present state, identify the ideal state, use deductive reasoning to figure out the steps between A and B.

This problem solving approach is very rational when hunting mammoth, fixing an engine or troubleshooting your career, but not very rational when dealing with women. The trouble with the Beta Strategy is that it intermittently works. For instance, when a woman finishes her party years and starts to enter her epiphany phase, she will be looking for Beta tells, as this will be her desired goal. However, a woman is also inherently programmed to hold out on sex when soliciting provision, in order to ensure long-term investment. This leads to many Betas ending up in “unintentional monogamous long term relationships“, frequently on the woman’s terms. I suppose one could argue that men trick women into sex, women trick men into relationships. The trouble with the volatile success-rate of Beta game, is that if it was a complete failure the man would learn that he needs to re-calibrate. The message to re-calibrate his approach, would translate into finding ways to be more alpha, or to appear more alpha. The two options would result in him either being more alpha or appearing more alpha.

However, this would be negative for the female side of the equation, as their dualistic sexual strategy depends on having both genetically fit alpha genetics and provisionally fit beta genetics for maximum optimization. If he appears more alpha, this may lead to a woman engaging in her short-term sexual strategy with him on false pretense. In essence, it becomes more difficult for her to differentiate between real alphas and pretender alphas. If a large group of men started becoming more alpha, this may compromise her long-term sexual strategy and ability to find a provider male.

Women need and want both Beta males and Alpha males within the sexual market place, in fact its a requirement for their sexual strategy. Thus, beta game becomes encouraged to some extent, through cognitive bias. A beta male engages in his heavy front-loaded investment pattern, develops oneitis, and sticks around for a period of time, if this is a failure 3 – 10 times, he rationalizes it through “She wasn’t the right woman“. This is encouraged in his female peer-group, in the form of “You are such a nice guy, you will find the girl for you“, “She just wasn’t the right one who appreciates you“, “How are you still single?” or a range of variations thereon. Thus, the failure of his beta game is not attributed to himself, or the approach, but to the woman. If he obtains a single success in 10 attempts, this is seen as validating his approach, and him finally having found “the one“. While a 10% success rate isn’t bad in terms of approaches, the beta approach takes a long time, and heavy resource investment, it’s not a case of the 10 approaches in 2 hours that takes place during a sarging session.

Alpha Game

Alpha game, as mentioned earlier is the game most people think of when they hear the word “game” in this context. Alpha game can and often is driven by logos, it has a goal, it follows a straight line of reasoning, but it is not communicated as such. In alpha game, Ethos and Pathos are used to their full extent and full value. Ethos is used to provide social proof, by being surrounded by hot girls (triggering pre-selection), cool people, by being a “leader of men” (Mystery), and a range of other qualities. Pathos is employed to tailor the approach to female psychological triggers, such as dread game, negs, demonstrating self-confidence, poise and an abundance mindset.

Alphas understand that “The best way to make a man do something is to convince him it was his idea in the first place“. The Alpha reverses the position, where he is now the buyer and the women are trying to sell to him. This is embodied in the old Mystery gambit “So, tell me 3 interesting things about you that aren’t about your looks” what it communicates is a disinterest in a woman’s appearance. It signals “I’m around women just as hot, if not hotter than you all the time”, it flips positions in the negotiation, it signals “work harder” and a range of other things.

This approach triggers a woman’s short term mating strategy, thus, the requirement for the Alpha to prove himself as a long term provider is not relevant. If one contrasts Alpha game and Beta game, the former communicates covertly, the former does so overtly. A common statement is that “it’s not what you say, but how you say it” and this is no-where more clear than in Alpha game. The focus here is on triggering a woman’s appreciation for his ethos, namely his social standing, and his pathos, his ability to communicate in a way that appeals to her emotions and psychology.

The major difference between Alpha game and Beta game, comes in what they trigger, and how they trigger it. The Alpha game triggers a woman’s short-term sexual strategy, by communicating that the male holds superior genetics, and thus she should seek to secure these genetics rapidly.

Summary and Conclusions

From the perspective of evolutionary psychology and biology, the dualistic sexual strategy of women makes sense, from a risk vs reward perspective. A woman who got saddled with offspring that has inferior genetics, has wasted a resource that is very energy intensive, namely a pregnancy. A pregnancy also means that the woman is at increased risk for predators and the risk of dying in childbirth. Thus, for her being able to filter men into “short term sexual strategy” and “long-term sexual strategy” is critical for her survival. Women who were inherently biased towards one of the two strategies, were probably less reproductively successful than women who were prone to the duality.

What Beta men do not understand is that the same woman who insists on a clean house, yells at you for having more than a single glass of wine and insists on Gucci purses. Will also fuck a broke musician in the back of a filthy van, while he’s high on heroin on top of a filthy blanket. The Beta approaches women in the same way you approach a company when you want to get a merger started, you give them all the good reasons why they should want to merge with you overtly. Alphas on the other hand understand that the key to getting the deal is to make the other person think they are the ones who initiated it.

It reminds me of a tip I read in a book on selling, “The easiest sales are when your customers come to you begging to buy your product”  Alphas understand that by using ethos and pathos they make women want their product. Betas think that by telling a woman what a great product they are that they will get sales. An alpha has no need to communicate his alpha status overtly using logos, he does so covertly through use of ethos and pathos. His character communicates his alpha status through posture, self-confidence, amused mastery, and various other traits. His alpha status is supported by both his own psychological and emotional communication, but also through the ethos and pathos of others. For instance, the “leader of men” coined by Mystery, is a case of the male both communicating himself, but also others communicating to support his communication.

Anyone can say “I’m a high value male” and this is in essence what the Beta strategy tries to communicate overtly using logos, through a mixture of virtue and provision signalling. Through virtue signalling, he is communicating that he holds the virtues he thinks women want, and which society tries to communicate that women want, these include, stability, reliability, monogamous potential, long-term mate potential. Through provision signalling he tries to communicate his ability to provide for her and her children.

More Reading

The Red Queen: Sex and the Evolution of Human Nature by Matt Ridley

Rhetoric by Aristotle



2 comments on “Alpha, Beta, Ethos, Pathos, Logos

  1. PUA is outer game, the redpill is inner game. The proportionate embodiment of both makes for the quintessential player.


    • I don’t think that dichotomy is accurate. PUA techniques and training, have a way of morphing into inner game over time. If you look at PUA history, it started with canned lines, peacocking and “double your dating” and then evolved over time into inner game. On the other hand, the red pill encourages both inner game (accepting the truth, developing a mindset etc) and outer game (working out, health, etc)they are already merging and I think we will see more and more a merger as a result of convergent evolution in the manosphere.


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