Posts Tagged ‘ mass effect

Episode 56 – Transgaming

transgender issues in gaming, transgender, mass effect, saints row, dys4ia, ana anthorpy, ea, open worlds, games saved my life, ashly birch, HAWP, morgan mccormick, translabyrinth

There are people in this world who aren’t comfortable the way they were born. Their attitudes and habits suggest that perhaps a woman can feel like a man, or visa versa. Transgendered people all over the world have lived through a lot. Torment, confusion, a staggeringly high suicide rate, and a society that would prefer to forget they exist.

Gaming has offered a world that can accept anybody, even those who feel unacceptable. As our guest, Morgan McCormick of TransLabyrinth, states that game worlds are crazy and it can seem that a person changing gender is certainly not the strangest thing that can happen. Games can then provide a safe and fun place for not only play to happen but perhaps, a introspection on who that person is and jump into the shoes of someone a different gender than they are. It can be a tool of self discovery as well as a way to blow off some steam.

But game communities are not the most empathetic group in the world, nor do game publishers and developers seem to pay any mind to the existence of transgendered people. Their presence in the game world is minimal and it’s time to change that.

Featuring music by Monodeer from the album Noise.bmp EP

On a side note – A big thank you to everyone in the subreddits r/transgender and r/transgamers for helping me navigate this complex and sensitive issue.

Episode 54 – God and Gaming

dragon age, mass effect, bioware, religion, emily jarrett, journey, assassins creed, bastion, god, faith, narrative, el shaddai

Mythologies and religious stories can infuse a sense of familiarity and structure to a game’s narrative or moral discussion mechanic. It can inspire great things from a player or offer a sense of introspection. Matt and Rich are atheists. Their insight on this topic can be limited. To remedy this we invited Emily Jarrett, grad student of Divinity and host of PAX Prime’s God and Gaming panel, to offer a religious perspective on gaming.

We chat about these themes in Bioware games, Bastion, Journey, and El Shaddai.

Does religious inspiration in a game make it more inspiring? Does it add weight to moral choice? Why do we not see a lot of current western beliefs represented in games? Are the more tenants of ritual, pilgrimage, and sacrifice important to how we relate or react to games? One thing we know for certain, as Emily says, we can’t lose our stories.

Featuring music by Bear and Walrus from the album Lake Poems

Episode 29 – Kickstart My Doc

Double Fine Adventure, AJBS, A Jumps B Shoots, 2PP, 2 Player Productions, Double Fine, Tim Schafer, crowdfunding, Kickstarter, Lifeformed, Dustforce
Double Fine Adventure Kickstarter

Kickstarter has ushered in a new method of funding projects. Now, group of people can band together and fund a project into existence, while getting thank you gifts in return. Some people have called it a revolution in funding games, movies, music, and all manner of other things. Others have called it merely an option to capitalise on the viral power of the internet.

Whatever you may think about it, 2 Player Productions have certainly made the most of it with 2 wildly successful Kickstater projects. Their latest endeavor teams them up with Double Fine Productions to make a documentary about the creation of a unique IP video game, front to back. Its an exciting idea and something that has never happened before.

We talk with Paul Levering, Paul Owens, and Asif Saddiky about their upcoming Minecraft documentary, the Double Fine project, their in depth however lesser talked of coverage of the Jak and Daxter HD remake, and their opinions on bringing people together to independently fund projects.

Matt – On a personal note and for full disclosure, it is true that these guys are friends of ours and I have donated to all of their projects. However, 2 Player Productions have more than proven themselves as talented film makers and harbingers of a new age of game media. I urge my audience to donate to their project for no other reason than, to paraphrase Paul Levering, due to the amount of money this project has earned you could be preordering a 30 or 40 dollar game for 15 bucks.

Music from Lifeformed‘s Dustforce OST.

Mass Effect
Paper Mario and the Thousand Year Door
Ico/Shadow of the Colossus
Brutal Legend
Escape Plan
Uncharted: Golden Abyss
Cave Story
Alien Soldier

This may be redundant on the Punk Effect, but we also mention one of our favorite retro game review series, 16 Bit Gems. You can find it on the The Clan of the Grey Wolf or The Punk Effect.