So, I was driving home and tossed in The Rat Pack Live at the Sands for the ride. I was muttering to myself about Dungeons & Dragons and other fantasy games and how they treat both POC and non-humans as being less dimensional and nuanced. This had been set off by reading through my shiny new pdf copy of Tiny Dungeon 2e, where I was simultaneously elated at the variety of player races and depressed by the stereotypes applied. So, mid-mutter, Sammy Davis Jr came into the set, and I heard his iconic line of “Integration! Integration!” So let’s talk decolonization and integration. And yes, I’m picking on D&D in this, because it set the pattern.
Rifts is my eternal problematic fave, and also a source of bizarre, contradictory, and confusing lore. However, something that’s easy to let fall through the cracks of the gonzo setting is that there are actually many survivor states in the post-apocalypse. That’s right, places that directly trace their lineage, governance, culture, and dominant populations back to the Pre-Rifts era. And this Backgrounder as an overview of them!
Old timers and grognards alike in the RPG hobby like to complain. “Things were better back in…”, “We didn’t have or need that when we played in…”, and so on and so forth. But one of the oddest complaints I hear is about how games today, and specifically, D&D, are too much like video games. So let’s take a look at a very interesting cycle of mutual influence, and see what we can learn from it. For ease of bracketing years, I’m going to use console generations for this.
Skip to ~3:15 for the content!
Lizardfolk. They’ve been in the game since 1e, and peopel have wanted to play them since about the moment they saw them! But what they all about in Chult and on the Peninsula? Check out this episode ot find out!
Want to read more about Chult? Check out where it all started!
Magic. It’s a core component of fantasy, but is often unevenly distributed and developed. On the outset, this seems sensical, until you dig into it a bit. At that point, other disparities and issues come into sharp relief. So this is a short post on decolonizing magic.