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I'm not sure if the rules of evolution apply in a world with gods.

What if there is a god of evolution?

 

What if the gods were an evolution?

 

We still know very little about PoE gods and their connection to souls, but isn't possible that they are just very very strong souls? what if the Engwithan who (were first to?) master soul magic over two thousand years ago and disappeared, has "ascended" beyond the mortal form?

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I'm not sure if the rules of evolution apply in a world with gods.

What if there is a god of evolution?

Were you there? :p

Yes, I was next to the horse in a gimp suit.

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“By striving to do the impossible, man has always achieved what is possible. Those who have cautiously done no more than they believed possible have never taken a single step forward.” ― Mikhail Bakunin

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What if the gods were an evolution?

Deitymon is evolving! :)

 

What if... the gods are REAPERS?! *WHHHEEHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!*

 

Just kidding. I'm with you, Mor. I suspect the fiber of the gods' being has something to do with the soul cycle.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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It feels a bit weird when people speak about racism in fantasy genre. It is my understanding that "racism" is the type of prejudice that's always out of line with reality, but in fantasy fiction reality is different, usually.

 

There is only one intelligent species on Earth - humans. So all racist things happen between one species, and so all of it is bullcrap. But there can be dozens of various intelligent creatures in any fantasy world. Undying "magical" elves, demons, fey, trolls, gods, demigods, undead et cetera. And these creatures can be dramatically different.

 

Is it racist for a white human to say that white people are inherently more intelligent than black people? Yes, it is, and this white human is probably an idiot. Is it racist for a dragon to say that dragons are inherently wiser and stronger than humans? No, if dragons were made wiser and stronger by authors, then it is simply a declaration of fact.

 

Just my two cents. Sorry if my English isn't perfect, me be no native speaker. :)

Edited by Zmiy Dojdey
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Is it racist for a dragon to say that dragons are inherently wiser and stronger than humans? No, if dragons were made wiser and stronger by authors, then it is simply a declaration of fact.

 

Just my two cents. Sorry if my English isn't perfect, me be no native speaker. :)

No worries. Your English seems pretty good to me. I wouldn't have suspected you weren't a native speaker, :)

 

Regarding the dragon thing... it's true that stating the results of an objective comparison between dragons and humans is not racist. What would be racist is if you deemed the life/existence of another race inherently lesser than your own.

 

Racism isn't about scientific genetic comparisons. Hell, Norse folk tend to have blond hair. Certain ethnicities tend to be taller than others, etc. That's not racism. Racism is "I'm better than you, and you're beneath me. If you die/suffer, it's fine, and you should, and I should benefit, etc."

 

I get what you're saying, though. It starts becoming skewed with things like dragons versus humans, etc. But, I think that might be one of the reasons that most fantasy races (playable ones, usually) are humanoid. So that we can identify with them. But, yeah, the idea is, if you're a creature capable of worrying and planning and deciding things and evaluating philosophy, etc., then that should be considered.

 

If dragons can speak and reason and aren't all instinct and hunter, then dragons sapiently deciding to just eat all humans/humanoids is no different from humans just deciding that dragons are wild beasts that must be slain on-sight, no questions asked. It's an arbitrary conclusion jumped to because of physical form/traits. "Oh, that dragon's a big monster, 'cause it's huge and possesses incredible destructive power. I don't care if it can think and feel and co-exist." Or "Oh, I'm so much mightier than those humans, wit h their little squishy bodies. Their existence is insignificant, so I'll just kill them all for sport."

 

Racism is the justification of the idea that something not possessing the same traits as you (as attributed to "race"/genetics/culture/blood/what-have-you) is inherently less significant and/or is deserving of malice. At its core, it doesn't matter if it's between beings of pure energy and humans, or human-like races and humans, or just humans and humans... or dragons and slightly-different-types-of-dragons, even.

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Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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please forgive if we is repeating what somebody else has said in this thread as we did not read beyond genesis post.

 

...

 

is cyclical that entertainments become embracing grimdark. am s'posing you can go back to Sophocles v. Euripides if you is looking for origins in western entertainment. maybe not. 

 

*shrug*

 

the thing is, we gets bored with the racism stuff as it appears in games and movies and tv. yeah, we get that magneto were meant to be Malcolm X and and xavier were Martin Luther King jr... though the naming always struck us as kinda backwards. and we never understood why superpowers resulting from freak accidents and alien experimentation were okie dokie, but birth super powers were bad in the marvel universe. regardless, with every xman movie we gets the racism is bad speeches. duh. games is also wanting to get in on the act. dragon age were s'posed "dark and gritty," so the developers had the traditional superior elf hierarchy turned upside down and made them victims o' racism. is not uncommon to do racism in games nowadays.

 

...

 

racism is bad. even the south africans figured that out decades ago. in and of itself, overt racism just ain't all that interesting. is firmly on the dark side o' the simplistic and somewhat tired good v. evil spectrum.  raise your hand if you thinks racism is ok. even if you does think it is ok, chances are you don't admit 'cause everybody else knows it is bad... 'cept at rpgcodex. yeah, there is subtitles to modern racism that makes it a compelling issue even today, but such subtleties don't translate particular well in a game. 

 

if obsidian ain't gonna do anything particularly innovative with racism in a fantasy setting, we got not problem with them largely ignoring... 'cause is boring.

 

HA! Good Fun!

Edited by Gromnir

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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Regarding the dragon thing... it's true that stating the results of an objective comparison between dragons and humans is not racist. What would be racist is if you deemed the life/existence of another race inherently lesser than your own.

...

Racism is the justification of the idea that something not possessing the same traits as you (as attributed to "race"/genetics/culture/blood/what-have-you) is inherently less significant and/or is deserving of malice. At its core, it doesn't matter if it's between beings of pure energy and humans, or human-like races and humans, or just humans and humans... or dragons and slightly-different-types-of-dragons, even.

 

Regarding your final point, that's supremacism which is a whole category above racism though the 2 often go hand-in-hand.

 

Racism is the assumption about an individual or group of individuals based upon their race. It can even be what you might consider a positive attribute.

Nigel Farage (UK Independence Party leader) said in an interview "I was asked if a group of Romanian men moved in next to you, would you be concerned? And if you lived in London, I think you would be."

This is racism, it doesn't make direct comparison between your own status and that of the subject, just merely an assumption based upon their race (in this case nationality but race can also refer to skin colour or religion e.g. Jew).

Another example of racism might be "all black people are good athletes". Many might consider this to be a compliment but it isn't, especially to the black people who don't share this trait.

 

Supremacism is the belief that, for whatever reason, you/they are "better" than someone because of race, gender, age, sexuality, religion, ethnicity, belief system, culture or class and that this supposed supremacy gives you/them the right to dominate, control or rule over those who you consider "lesser" than yourself/themselves.

"Men should be in charge of government" is a supremacist statement.

 

Here's the crux: All supremacism is racism/sexism/ageism etc. but not all racism/sexism/ageism etc. is supremacism. It is possible to be racist purely by ignorance. For example, I grew up in a 99% white community and when I'm with people from different ethnic backgrounds I'm constantly fearful of putting my foot in it and saying something stupid because I don't understand their ethnic background and any cultural differences they may or may not have to me. I'm certainly not supremacist or racist but my ignorance might lead me to say something or do something that could be construed as such (hasn't happened yet I think... unless they were too polite/graceful to forgive me and not let me know). I'd like to clarify here, I'm somewhat fearful of the social situations that might arise from meeting people with different ethnic backgrounds to myself, I'm not fearful of the people themselves and it does not stop me meeting them, I just feel a bit on-edge at times!

 

Back to how this relates to games, I've recently started re-playing Dragon Age: Origins as a Daelish Elf. It's probably the best experience I've had of a game portraying racism both against your character and as your character (if you choose those options).

 

Many characters respond to you in a negative fashion based on you being an Elf, some merely surprised, some merely ignorant, some showing racist undertones in what they say and some that display full-blown racist/supremacist tendencies.

 

The game also gives you excellent dialogue options if you want to respond with some racially-charged hatred.

 

What I found interesting is that, while I would never normally choose those dialogue options, the racism directed toward me by some of the NPCs made me a lot more inclined to do so. Sometimes so-much-so that I did succumb to the odd retort that, in isolation would certainly be considered a racist remark. As a retort it serves to highlight their racism but it's certainly not the "I'm above that" response...

 

Racism is probably the 2nd thing on my list of things I'd like to no longer exist (behind greed) in the real world. Having said that, it IS a part of our world and it creates strife and strong emotions in many different people for a few different reasons and as such, I'd like to see it in the game in some form or another. These games are at their best when they make us feel something strongly enough to want to laugh, cry, shout, whatever.

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I can't but feel that Racism is widely overrated, prejudice and bigots who act upon it were never limited to race...

 

 

EDIT:

Was there ever a culture or country where racism didn't thrive? I thought the very first instinct would be, the stranger (looks different, sounds different) is the enemy, and thus the formation of tribes etcetera.

Indeed, and it remind me a quote from Terry Pratchett: "Racism was not a problem on the Discworld, because -- what with trolls and dwarfs and so on -- speciesism was more interesting. Black and white lived in perfect harmony and ganged up on green."

 

I think an interesting situation arises here because of different sapient species existing, with the varying races of humanity we have a shared species ability to mate and produce offspring, thus reinforcing our commonality. However with the other species, Dwarves, Elves etcetera, we do not have that. What differences does this raise? Has there been species specific prejudice, and if so how was it resolved? It seems something that really cannot be handwaved away, and I expect will not be considering the Orlan situation.

Very good point. IMO our racial mix might be a conscious choice by Obsidian, the use of Races as metaphor to deal with current social issues is not new, and this allow them to thematically focus on what bring those races together as oppose to what makes them different (i.e. the exhausted trope of dwarfs vs elf's) thus reinforcing our commonality beyond our racial traits like height\looks\etc..

 

I think that beyond that metaphor, things break up. If "humanoid" races can't mate, we are basically different species. So in this setting Humans vs Dragons is the same as Humans vs Aumaua... and i am not very optimistic about such setup coming together in that time, after all Humans always tend to exterminate the dragon threat...

Edited by Mor
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@Randomthom, you are correct. My apologies.

 

Part of what I was getting at, though, with the "you see yourself as superior" bit, was that seeing a negative in someone who is of a particular "race" is automatically seeing something that you (as someone not of that race) don't have. But, you are correct in that it can actually be a positive assumption you're making about a race, as well.

 

Although, again, to be clear, there's a difference between making a general comment, and literally believing that every single member of a given race possesses some trait just because they're of that race. Again, if I were to say that Asians tend to be shorter than Westerners, I'm not walking up to a 7-foot asian person and telling them they're short because they're Asian, and "Asians are short."

 

I guess the reason I'm clarifying that is that it kinda bugs me how almost anything attributed in any way to ethnicity/genes nowadays gets pegged by some people as racist or somehow negative. "Oh my crap! You can't point out that it's rare in that gene pool to see teal-colored eyes!"

 

Sometimes, people sort of start inadvertently fighting "differencism." Like our differences aren't what make us unique and interesting as human beings.

 

Annnnywho... Thanks for pointing all that out. I wasn't really doing a lot of that much justice with what I said. My bad.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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The racism in project eternity will be this 

 

Super athletes showing their dominance by sitting on emasculate men.

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Although, again, to be clear, there's a difference between making a general comment, and literally believing that every single member of a given race possesses some trait just because they're of that race. Again, if I were to say that Asians tend to be shorter than Westerners, I'm not walking up to a 7-foot asian person and telling them they're short because they're Asian, and "Asians are short."

 

I guess the reason I'm clarifying that is that it kinda bugs me how almost anything attributed in any way to ethnicity/genes nowadays gets pegged by some people as racist or somehow negative. "Oh my crap! You can't point out that it's rare in that gene pool to see teal-colored eyes!"

 

Yeah, I agree. It isn't racist though of course some people are more sensitive than you or I.

 

Prejudice (probably a better word than racist because it covers all the other forms e.g. sexism) is the projection of a stereotype or pre-formed opinion upon an individual and then the inability to detach them from that stereotype in the mind of the prejudiced person(s) when evidence is displayed contrary to it.

 

In fact, you could argue that recognising the way someone differs from the stereotype is how prejudices are broken.

 

For example, in the case of a physically strong woman

Truth: Generally speaking women are physically weaker than men

Stereotype: I expect a woman to be physically weaker than a man

Prejudice: That woman is physically weaker than men

Individual truth: This woman is physically stronger than the average woman and thus is probably as physically strong as or stronger than the average man.

 

Stereotypes are not prejudices, they are merely the way we manage large amounts of information about large people groups. The problem with stereotypes is when we expect them to work on an individual level. The other problem with stereotypes is in how we build them.

 

In my previous post I quoted Nigel Farage, the UKIP party leader. His comment about Romanians caused upset because he has taken some uninformed fears (possibly from biased news sources) regarding the purported prevalence of criminality amongst Romanians and applied it to all Romanians.

 

First, he has built an inaccurate stereotype and second, he has tried to apply a macro-socio-economic stereotype onto a fictitious micro-scale people group.

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As I remember the Celts of the Po valley were quite discriminated against by Roman society before Hannibal's crossing of the Alps. and thus served as a fertile recruiting ground of skilled warriors for him during his protracted campaigning. I wonder if we'll see something similar in Poe? Or perhaps the forced exodus of Jewish moneylenders from England that Longshanks forced just prior to his loans becoming due, an almost prototypical piece of medieval ruthlessness. Or maybe Karla Magnus' crusade against the heathen saxons, or the Knights Teutonic's push east? Very fertile ground with masses of examples.

 

An ironic one, the harrowing of the north, where the Normanni sought to pacify/purge the Norsemen of the Danelaw.

 

Indeed. Popular prejudice against Celts in the Mediterranean world was that they lacked endurance and wer generally slothful, had a short temper and were unreliable (whereas certain Germanic tribes were attributed a practically inborn sense of loyalty). Generally, one's place of origin was considered determenational regarding your character and physical and mental condition. This mindset is evident in a lot of ancient historiographies. 

 

So yeah, some form of prejudice against people with a different geographical background could be expected in PoE.  

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I hope they keep it more subdued or subtle though, rather than the standard "Pfah, I don't talk to accursed pointy-ears, get out of my sight you scum!". I know, I know, medieval type realism and grittiness and all that, but honestly I'm kind of tired of all the time the same thing. I think peoples' brains wouldn't explode if they took a more modern and complex look at the issue.

 

Frankly I'm tired of the subtle approach to racism in games which is the "pointy-eared" nonsense you mention.  I want a member of my party to be kidnapped and murdered by a mob of bigots because he whistled at a woman of a different race.

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Based on what I've seen after playing BG, IWD and NWN2, I think the racism will most likely show up in conversation, not game mechanics. If you play a race that's largely untrusted (like the drow or tiefling of NWN2) you'll get a lot of frightened or untrusting comments, and even people who try to discredit you with your heritage. You'll also get a lot of nods no matter what you are, like being acknowledged as a fellow elf from an elven character, or receive an incredulous comment from humans if they haven't seen many of your kind around (like halflings in BG). But I'm not sure about being barred from certain shops or quests.

 

This game seems like it'll have much richer racial histories, cultures, and socio/economic interactions than in Forgotten Realms games though, so I'd like to think they'll be more in-game acknowledgement and consequences of our race selection. More comments, more opportunities, more detractions, etc.


"Not I, though. Not I," said the hanging dwarf.

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I hope it'll at least show up in reputation mechanics. If people are racist, but it doesn't functionally affect any actions/events in the game whatsoever, it's a bit self-defeating.

 

I certainly hope we'll be barred from certain shops/quests (for example), as I'd hate to see the "difference" between two playthroughs be "Hi, Mr. Elf! I sure love Elves! Welcome to my shop! Feel free to browse my wares!", and "Omg, every Elf I've ever met was nothing but trouble. My family's DEAD because of Elves! I LOATHE YOU TO THE CORE! Feel free to browse my wares!"

 

If it doesn't affect anything but flavor text, then I'd rather it not even exist at all.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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Well, since it's in text, you can always imagine the other "Feel free to browse my wares" to be delivered with icecold intonation, Lephys. The guy probably pissed in that healing potion he's handing you now.

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Well, since it's in text, you can always imagine the other "Feel free to browse my wares" to be delivered with icecold intonation, Lephys. The guy probably pissed in that healing potion he's handing you now.

 

Yeah, but how would the game mechanics represent the negative effects of vendor urine in a healing potion? This is absolutely vital to my immersion and Obsidian better implement it or I will... err... complain and moan and stamp my feet like a five year old.

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Yeah, but how would the game mechanics represent the negative effects of vendor urine in a healing potion? This is absolutely vital to my immersion and Obsidian better implement it or I will... err... complain and moan and stamp my feet like a five year old.

You jest, but, IF the game were actually going to decide that he relieved himself in my potion bottle, I'd kind of expect some continuity there -- something like "Ack, that potion tasted far worse than any of the others I've had..." :)

 

Besides, if he did that, you might just 'round telling everyone not to buy from him, because he sells disgusting potions, in contrast to other people's non-disgusting ones. 8P Bad for business.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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Intact Soul Bigots; those with fractured souls are fuggles.... :cat:


"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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Intact Soul Bigots; those with fractured souls are fuggles.... :cat:

SOULISM!


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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I hope it'll at least show up in reputation mechanics. If people are racist, but it doesn't functionally affect any actions/events in the game whatsoever, it's a bit self-defeating.

 

I certainly hope we'll be barred from certain shops/quests (for example), as I'd hate to see the "difference" between two playthroughs be "Hi, Mr. Elf! I sure love Elves! Welcome to my shop! Feel free to browse my wares!", and "Omg, every Elf I've ever met was nothing but trouble. My family's DEAD because of Elves! I LOATHE YOU TO THE CORE! Feel free to browse my wares!"

 

If it doesn't affect anything but flavor text, then I'd rather it not even exist at all.

I have no doubt that certain shops/quests will be bared by our disposition/reputation. So what you suggest can be easily implemented with racial multiplier in checks calculations for example:

 

You need reputation > 60 to be able to ___ or > 80 if you are an elf, because I am elf hater.

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My Wild Orlan Death Godlike Barbarian will meet racial intolerance head on with sharpened steel.

 

I dont favor massive mechanical disadvantages (higher prices, refusal of service/lodging/etc) but small factional modifiers and flavor text should do the trick.

Edited by Shevek
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I wouldn't mind such a mechanic. People making off-hand remarks about the character or refusing service. Would they have to balance the racism though? If they didn't some characters would be more disadvantaged than others.

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If they didn't some characters would be more disadvantaged than others.

 

I know this thought might come as anathema to some but why is this such a bad thing in a game?

 

The world isn't fair, we all know it. I know that a woman in the UK is less likely to attain the top jobs in corporate business and black people in New York are more likely to be the subject of police brutality. I know that I as a white male in my late twenties have many invisible advantages afforded me by the society in which I live whether I want it or not.

 

The game is not set in a utopia and as such there will be those who have more and those who have less.

 

The trick with regards to game balance is usually for it to either be offset by some other benefit but I'd suggest that the better way to handle it is probably to just keep the negative element to a very small (nearly imperceptible) value.

 

5% more expensive in some stores (only the ones owned by the bigots) isn't a huge price to pay, especially if there are other places you can go to buy or sell that don't have such penalties.

 

I think this makes it feel more like a roleplaying mechanic and less like a rule.


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Would they have to balance the racism though? If they didn't some characters would be more disadvantaged than others.

In general, yes, it would be prudent. You wouldn't want all non-humans to miss out on 70% of the game's content, while humans just get access to all of it for being human. However, you don't need to go so far as "for every single person who turns away a specific race, there should be some other person who specifically rewards that particular race in some way."

 

That's what most people don't get when they think "balance" is bad. No, improper treatment of it is bad.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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