I’ve thought a lot about it and I think I hate Game Of Thrones because it’s just a massive endorsement of libertarianism: cruelest wins etc and I don’t really think I need more of it

I started off reading the books and thought they were fine, but I think the defining characteristic of ‘anyone can die at any moment’ was not something I thought about systemically. No: people are worth caring about and they are worth investing in. Saying ‘everyone dies’ is a slippery slope to me narratively

As a narrative designer I try to make people feel like they really do care about the characters they meet, and I try to design so that they have to accept the bad things about them: the lies, the flaws, the fucking up, the going back to their abusive spouse or their inability to understand the player character. The more you understand their behaviour the more you understand who your character is and what they can do. But I don’t get on with a world where violence is the best answer

Because it’s your game’s job to say: violence is the least interesting (game-wise) answer, because most game systems can’t make violence the horrific thing it actually is. So why not make it remove content from you? If you kill this person, you do not get to see their life continue or what new stories they might being you by surviving. That’s why it’s so boring to kill the lesbian lover or kill the adulteress in a game. They’ve got a lot of shit to say: let’s hear it

@caraellison i was thinking this exact thing while playing Dishonored 2! i loved how much more you had to play the game to *not* kill people. Not just plot-critical NPCs, but also just guards and everything, too.

@caraellison In a weird way that can help make violence more interesting in the game, too, because then there's actually a sense of loss, of someone's story cut off abruptly rather than just some nameless NPC who's now gone from the game world. There's actually a weight to it, then.

@caraellison I think you might be misunderstanding George R. R. Martin's perspective, which I think a lot of people do. He is painting a pessimistic picture of the Middle Ages, history, and life in general, but he is not going so far as to endorse this. He's largely reacting to Tolkien's idealism by showing a history that he believes to be closer to reality. I agree it gets to be too much, but I don't think he is saying might makes right.

@kittybecca I agree he’s not saying it. But look at why it is currently popular, especially on tv. Look at who likes it the most. Look at who misunderstands Martin’s meaning the most, which I believe to be: none of this matters because winter is going to kill you all via climate change

@caraellison the most deflating thing i have heard about it: a historian friend of mine went on and on to praise how, as a first for fantasy, the author seems to actually understand history. annnnd yeah, that made me way less surprised how bored i was by its endless repetition of same.

@gekitsu it only understands history insofar as it wildly underestimates scots more like

@caraellison no dispute from me. tbf, he only meant insofar as people are acting politically. (which then ties back into a long standing debate we’re having regarding tolkien/lotr)

@caraellison hard same. Stories about cruelty and base cunning triumphing are exhausting and there are way too many of them.

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