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15-May-2016 09:47

The hero often brings with them a kind of entitlement due to their ability, their independence, their legal/moral/religious prerogative, their race, their class.

That tends to cause trouble rather than reduce or solve it.

Again, those are things that inform the life of a lot of gay men like me in very specific ways, but rarely get represented positively.

You'll also find ableism, misogyny, homophobia, cissexism, and classism presented in one big bundle that's justified because orcs are "inherently evil." It's an uncomfortable connotation for the folk that share similar traits.

It's extremely loaded and can't just be dismissed by saying, "It's just fantasy, it's meaningless." For a lot of people, it's easier to identify with the monster of a story than the hero we're supposed to root for.

That's both me wanting to show mental illness isn't a hyperbolic and grim, but something that happens to people we should be able to talk about.

Also it touches on my own experiences with mental illness too so maybe I'm a little less afraid of talking to people about it as well.

A lot of the scenarios in the game do touch on the personal and the political.

You find out, for example, that one of the orcs has problems with mental illness which caused him to believe he was inherently, unfixably weak, and how he deals with that.

But a lot of those traits are most strongly connected with members of marginalized groups. Fantasy tends to be built around some kind of racial categorization system: human, elf, orc, dwarf.

Often you'll find orcs are unthinkingly given traits that are harrowingly similar to real-world ideas rooted in racism.

I have depression and social anxiety—which, as mental illnesses go, are fairly common.

I have a fairly good handle on both in my day-to-day life, which I'm very thankful for, because it means I can make games like A lot of the characters have scars, physical and mental disabilities, markings, body hair, and stretch marks.



Though Amy lost a few pounds, it doesn’t seem she ever really wanted to.… continue reading »


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