I was caught in a discussion recently about social justice and the strong reactions that people in the hobby often have to designing games as inclusive. I am in favor of it, but other people will make fun and harass people for simply doing it.
I don’t consider myself a real designer, no one really knows who I am and I haven’t made a single euro from writing elfgames to this date. I don’t talk much of my personal life either and I won’t be doing it now.
I sort of don’t like using the term “LGBTQ ally” but I think that’s what I am trying to do in various aspects of my life. As far as writing games goes, my main goal is to design stuff that anyone, regardless of ethnicity, sexuality or gender can pick up and not feel like I am turning their identity into cheap entertainment or excluding them. I should probably do more than that, but I really don’t know how. I try to include minorities in my design, regardless of historical concerns and all that because at the end of the day, I make the choices of what to include in a game setting, not the history book. And I want minority representation, because I want the hypothetical LGBTQ reader or anyone else who reads the book to go “oh, I can play in this game the way I want without having obstacles thrown at me.”
I don’t think I am doing all that much, which is why people’s strong reactions towards this approach occasionally baffle me a lot.