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D&D 5E D&D Races: Evolution, Fantasy Stereotypes & Escapism

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This is a great point. I've absolutely noticed this too, but I don't remember if this has ever been called out explicitly.

Fantasy humans can also go really, really bad. Like so bad (or utterly insane) that they're sacrificing innocents to a demon god or trying to summon an entity to destroy the world. That can be far less moral than anything in real-life.

So it's interesting to me that on one hand fantasy humans are morally advanced to your point, but in other ways, can be far worse.

Maybe we could explore some reasons why that might be?

I think this is a fantastic contribution to the thread, thank you kindly!
I remember short novel in Forgotten Realms about half-human half-goblin - son of goblin female after sexual attack of human mercenary.

And I not remember any example of opposite.

Also i remember racism of Waterdavian nobles - who hire assassins to kill half-elven members of Noble houses because "blood must be pure"...

Humans are same. But existing in reality of Faerun gods - change things and society.


if we want things we can fight what we need is a pure monster, not monstrous people, do you follow?

What I know
  • You have every right in the world to fight (or not) whatever creature you want to to fight and not fight whatever creature you don't want to fight
  • Upthread I wrote "I 100% support someone's need to see a fantasy world where their needs are properly represented in the fiction. This is very important."
What I do not know
  • Who is "we"? You and Dire Bare?
  • What is the actual impact of my opinion on your gaming? As I am an anonymous rando from Canada with zero influence on how you play D&D or even how D&D products have/are/will be written
  • Since you did choose to quote me, what did your question have to do with what I messaged to Dire Bare?


Just because you have a problem with it does not mean that it is 'problematic'.
Just to add to @DarkMantle's point above, the "you" here is doing an awful lot of heavy lifting. That these terms are problematic are pretty much obvious by now. It's not some tiny voice crying in the darkness. These things have been talked about for decades. The only difference is that now, unlike for the past several decades, these issues are actually gaining traction.

If you think that terms like "savage" or "primitive" or various other words haven't been an issue all the way along, you haven't been paying much attention.

Language changes. Words gain and lose connotations and gain and lose common usage. There was a time when I would refer to a bundle of sticks using a particular word that now, if I were to use it exactly the same way, in very clearly defined circumstances, would still probably not be the best word to use simply because of the negative connotations. Same with using the word "gay" for happy or brightly colored. Sure, in context, it might be exactly the right meaning word - a gaily colored float in a parade - but, again, because language changes, I'm pretty sure that if I'm writing for public consumption - a newspaper or RPG book - my editor is going to be striking that word out and subsituting "colorfully" or "brightly" and any of a dozen other words.

Censorship? Not really. It's perfectly acceptable practice and has always been done. That's WHY we have editorial staff after all. Choosing the best word is not simply a case of choosing the most accurate definition.

So, in the end, if you don't have a problem with a word, it probably means that you haven't been paying attention.


Getting lost in fantasy maps


As long as i get to be the frog
IMO, statistics often back up the truth of many stereotypes (not all or even most, but many) making them true generalizations. However, regardless of the truth or falsity of such generalizations it's still not right to judge an individual based on generalizations about whatever group you place them into - especially when that group is based on something about themselves that they had nor will have any control over.

IMO, there are many bad (savage, barbaric, brutal, etc) 'tribes' out there even today. Certain gangs make an excellent example of such tribes. I bring this up to say this: there are 'others' we legitimately should fear, that behave outright brutally toward those that get in their way and that should be othered for it. So IMO, othering is not simply an outdated psychological defense mechanism - othering serves a real purpose even in modern day society. That said the savage, barbaric and brutal have never been relegated to one race or nationality - all races and nationalities are guilty for all have had factions within them that have done horrific things. I would even go so far as to suggest that any such faction within any group deserves to be othered when it treads too far into the savage, barbaric, brutal territory.

Taking this back to D&D - Orcs and other evil races are othered in D&D - but for good reason, they are meant to represent some of the most outright evil factions of D&D. In this sense it's not really any worse othering them than it would be for us today to other Nazi's or Hell's Angels or MS-13.

Now I get that entire races/religions have been othered within the last 100 years (and sooner) and that shouldn't have happened. But, IMO othering itself isn't necessarily the problem - it's inappropriately othering that's the problem IMO. Some human factions really are and have been bad enough that they simply aren't the same as everyone else.
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