Minorities, represent

I went there again I guess, what with me posting about minority issues in the context of designing games for fun and profit.

Something I’ve thought about quite a bit is a decent and natural way to include the LGBT minorities in the game, since most games don’t do that and I’d like to do it, even if just for the sake of completeness. A realistic society should include such minorities.

And it’s a bit of a problem to me, how to do it properly. So far, the idea I’ve got is to just include various minorities as NPC’s in the setting and through them show that in that society, they’re as accepted as the white cisgendered heterosexual man. And maybe that’s really all that it takes, I think.

Making a big deal out of stuff like gender or sexual preferences in-game seems to me to be a rather bad idea, one that might actually end up being offensive. There’s this guy who’s name I don’t remember who does D20 modern sourcebooks and has really offensive ideas about how minorities should be.

Drop me a comment if you agree or disagree with my idea that just putting minorities in is a perfectly valid approach, and there’s no need to make a big deal out of it in the game setting. After all, I’m trying to make this game as inclusive as possible, and I want anyone be able to play it without feeling that they’re being ridiculed or patronized.




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4 Responses to Minorities, represent

  1. TK-31 says:

    Just including a non-caricaturized depiction of minorities in the role of NPCs is leaps and bounds more progressive than the mainstream, and unless you want to make LotN part social commentary, I don’t think you should be going much further than that.

    I do think though, that while discrimination should not be present, that you can safely portray the inner struggle of a few select minority NPCs to belong and be accepted by the greater group, or even figuring who they are and where they stand.

    Nothing overblown, just some details into the character design or flavor description, maybe a single Trait or Skill if it is culturally relevant and provided it doesn’t overshadow the rest. Definitely do get input from the represented minorities before doing anything though.

    • kemper2011 says:

      Hi, thought your comment was very good.

      You’ll probably be happy to hear I get consulting from people who are more familiar with gender studies and queer theory than I am. I’m just a boring comparative religion guy, after all.

      I’ll need to carefully consider any inner struggle concepts, though, since they might not fit the overall light tone of the game.

  2. dirtyhobbit says:

    What on earth could you be ‘offended’ about in regards to minorities in RPG’s? Seriously, dont you have anything else in your life to focus on rather than some idiotic idea like that? Are you upset because Halflings live in holes, Dwarves love gold and shiny things and somehow you equate this to a real life reaction of being offended? I cannot begin to put into words how silly that is. If you are going to continue along that line of thought, perhaps your first expansion should be some sort of fantasy UN type organization that looks into the human-rights abuses towards Kobolds and Goblins by oppressive adventurers.

    In your ‘manifesto’ you say its not 1970 anymore. Too bad, because back then we never worried about this kind of junk and didnt let it ruin our game. I also find it humorous that you ridicule the 70’s game designers/artists and their incredible achievements, yet you are designing a game directly off the backs of those same game designers. Indeed, that truly does iconify this generations attitudes towards creativity.

    • kemper2011 says:

      Good evening!

      Unfortunately, at this point Lions of the North does not include goblins or kobolds. So, doing peacekeeping operations to protect them would be rather silly, no?

      I am of course talking (or writing) in this case about real-world minorities who, sad to say, are underrepresented in media or if not underrepresented, treated in a rather nasty stereotypical fashion. And since I get to write games, I thought “why not be cooler about minority issues?”

      I don’t see myself ridiculing the guys who made games back in the day. I instead find the obsession on “old school” silly. The games have already been written, if you enjoy them, play them! What I find amusing is the willingness of so many writers to go and reinvent the wheel.

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