log in or register to remove this ad

 

5E How should be the future Oriental Adventures.

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
I don't agree that they should take it down, but it would be good for WotC to say that any revenues received from products like Oriental Adventures or Kara-tur are donated to a charity organization protecting Asian immigrants (or something else, it doesn't matter much).

I'll add that the op phrases creating Asian-fantasy content like some difficult balance when honestly, it's not that difficult to be not-racist. WotC can (and does) hire consultants, and they absolutely should from diverse backgrounds to ensure their content isn't putting out anything racist, intentional or not. Even better, they should have Asian representation in their art and writing for such a book (and I believe their art director Emi Tanji is of Asian descent).

Looking back through Jade Regent, a Pathfinder Adventure Path, I can see how one can create RPG content for Asian fantasy that also isn't racist (I haven't read the whole thing so may have missed things, please point it out if I do). I think WotC can do even better.

WotC can even return to Kara-tur, Al-Qadim, or other past settings as long as they feel happy in redesigning where necessary. It's been three editions or something since they've been visited, changes make sense.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Slit518

Explorer
I believe the term simply means 'eastern'. However, my understanding is that the reason it has gone out of favor is that the term has historically been associated with a lot of racist tropes. So it carries a lot of baggage. And, since it's not all that descriptive anyway and it tends to lump a lot of very disparate cultures, I don't really think it is much of a loss.

I am happy to be corrected by someone with more knowledge on the matter.

AD
Thanks! This explains a little more.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
To say WotC can't publish a book about xiákè and kabukimono is like saying Disney can't produce movies about Alladin, Mulan or Raya and the last dragon. This is not about to forbbid but to explain how to do in the right way. Can't we watch the movies of Kung-Fu Panda? We shouldn't close those doors. If we complain about stereotypes then we could talk about beat'em videogames by Asian companies. If am Spanish can I complain about Vega (Street Fighters) or another Spanishs characters in videogames?
Honestly @LuisCarlos17f , I get you're trying to strike some balance here but I don't appreciate the "what-about-ism" you're bringing up here.

If you're actually offended by Vega in Street Fighter, you should complain. If you're not, don't. It's that easy. Being "offended" isn't really a choice for people, it's something that they actually feel.

I don't think anyone here is saying that banning Oriental Adventures means banning all Asian-fantasy content, and I think you know that. So let's try to stay on topic on what actual respectful Asian-fantasy content would look like, instead of engaging with logic fallacies like "slippery slopes."
 

Mercurius

Legend
The word "oriental" literally just means "eastern," as an antonym to "occidental" (western). There are also the more obscure terms "austral" (southern) and "boreal" (northern).

As for whether it offensive or not, well that depends on the person. There are obviously those people who find it offensive because they connect it to various stereotypes, but many Asian people don't, instead just finding it to be outdated. If nothing else, though, it is somewhat archaic and not really in common usage anymore.

But the term is Eurocentric; meaning, relative to one being European (i.e. the Eastern World being oriented to the west of the Occident). Asian Adventures would be more relevant to the contemporary global context. But the problem with Asian Adventures is that while "the Orient" was understood to be anything east of Europe, it also usually referred to--or at least connoted--the Far East (China, Korea, Japan), and Asia also includes the Middle East, south Asia, southeast Asia, central Asia, etc.

So it depends upon what such a book would include. Calling a book "Asian Adventures" and only covering Far Eastern analogues would be like calling a book "European Adventures" and only covering the British Isles, Germany, and France.

My guess is that we won't see an actual Oriental/Asian Adventures book, but that WotC will incorporate such material into specific setting books, like a Tarkir or re-vamped Kara-Tur, or perhaps a supplement with a very different title, ala Xanathar's.
 

However, there is a problem. In Hollywood, it is no longer acceptable for a white actor to play a non-white role. Will that mentality filter down to role playing?
In Hollywood, the concern is that a) you're more likely to use a stereotype if you don't actually bring in a person with similar experiences, and b) you're taking jobs from people who are from that race/culture/etc.

At a game among friends, firstly you're probably not using real-world cultures, and even if you are, it's not like you're taking job opportunities from other gamers.

The new edition of Legend of the Five Rings is set in a fantastic world reminiscent of Japan and some other east Asian cultures, and they have some guidelines on how to roleplay the setting without being insensitive to the real world cultures that were an inspiration.
 

Who complained about OA for the 3rd Edition? Is anybody angry with Dreamworks about Kung-fu panda? or Asian authors/mangaka writing romance novels set in the British Victorian Age.

Why not to can adapt your favorite manga/manwha/manhua?

Don't you know the coprodution Nezha (a Chinese god) with transformers? Or Hasbro working with Toei for the new serie of Power Rangers.
 


Minigiant

Legend
This, basically.

There's a step 4, as well:

4. Expect that no matter how much you try to do everything right, you will get pushback and criticism, either because you're still going to make mistakes because you are, after all, human; or that you'll potentially offend folks from perspectives even your consultants won't have considered. Accept them with grace and humility and promise to constantly improve.

Still, not very difficult at all.
The key part of the situation is "putting in the effort".

For most of human history, people in the media, either though laziness, indifference, and sometimes hate, put little to no effort into avoid offense. Now that the situation is turning on its head, some of the same media people will likely, either though laziness, indifference, and sometimes hate, will put little to no effort into finding the solutions to avoid offense

Luckily everyone is not in the same position as before.

And people will eventually understand if you commit some sweat and money to avoiding offense, you will wil get at least some leeway from backlash.
 

The Glen

Adventurer
Realistically any book dealing with Asian cultures is going to have a problem because of China. If they make a fantasy culture that is obviously based on Korea or Japan and those cultures appear to be anything less than subservient to a Chinese culture there's a chance to book won't get printed if Chinese printers are used or if Hasbro is looking to sell the book in China. That has been an issue lately or several companies
 

ZeshinX

Explorer
My guess is that we won't see an actual Oriental/Asian Adventures book, but that WotC will incorporate such material into specific setting books, like a Tarkir or re-vamped Kara-Tur, or perhaps a supplement with a very different title, ala Xanathar's.
If they were to title it specific to the setting's name, that seems like the ideal solution (at least as far as the title on the cover). "Kara-Tur Adventures" seems like a more than apt title instead of "Oriental Adventures".

Obviously it tends to suggest a very specific approach to the content, rather than a more generalized one, but we've seen examples that point out alternatives within the product, like with Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide (obviously most of the content is specific to the Forgotten Realms but contained a section offering at least the character options for other settings and worlds).
 

lkj

Adventurer
This is getting a little sideways, since it is very difficult for me to understand how someone does not know, today, that this term isn't proper to use (at least, not in America).

If used as a pure descriptor of location (Oriental, Occidental), then it is acceptable. But not for people.

Here's a quick explanation from 2009:

In 2016, it was removed from use in any and all federal law. You can additionally find numerous examples of people with Asian ancestry taking offense to the term, both because it lumps numerous different people under one umbrella, because it "others" people, because it has a stigma of "exoticism," and because it has been used in unsavory ways in the past; in short, while it has more pleasant connotations than some other words, it still causes offense for multiple reasons.

Again, in order to avoid thread derailment and lockdown, I advise using google. :)

EDIT- to be clear, this isn't directed at the person I am responding to, but to the person just asking questions.
I don't disagree with you. But something I've learned over the years is that things that are obvious to me (because of the circles I run in) are often not obvious to others outside my circles. And I've certainly been guilty of not knowing things that, in retrospect, were pretty obvious. I'll also say that, on average, I see the discussion about 'western use of orientalism' a lot less than I see other topics. Again, probably just a result of my own bubble.

AD
 

Minigiant

Legend
Realistically any book dealing with Asian cultures is going to have a problem because of China. If they make a fantasy culture that is obviously based on Korea or Japan and those cultures appear to be anything less than subservient to a Chinese culture there's a chance to book won't get printed if Chinese printers are used or if Hasbro is looking to sell the book in China. That has been an issue lately or several companies
That's why I think a new "OA" should reallybe deviod as much real history, culture, and mythology as possible. It would be simplier and easier to portray the feel and idea of the mass media versions of these elements and no actual truth.

If they make a ninja subclass, make it more Naruto and less historical.
 

TaranTheWanderer

Adventurer
I'm a westerner from North America. I love Asian Mythology and History. Having a better book that could allow me to play a character in that setting with better knowledge, respect and backstory would be amazing.

Getting rid of all the Asian Myth-style settings would be a disservice to pretty much everyone and does nothing to educate people outside of the various Asian cultures. It would suck if the Monsters Manual could only hold creatures from Euro-centric Mythology and it does nothing to make the game more inclusive.

Instead of burying the old books, release something awesome that everyone would be proud to own.
 

Urriak Uruk

Debate fuels my Fire
Who complained about OA for the 3rd Edition? Is anybody angry with Dreamworks about Kung-fu panda? or Asian authors/mangaka writing romance novels set in the British Victorian Age.

Why not to can adapt your favorite manga/manwha/manhua?

Don't you know the coprodution Nezha (a Chinese god) with transformers? Or Hasbro working with Toei for the new serie of Power Rangers.
Dude stop bringing up Kung-fu Panda. This is a D&D forum.

If people are complaining that Oriental Adventures is offensive, believe them. That doesn't mean they think all Asian influence in media is racist too.
 

darjr

I crit!
I’m of Japanese descent. I was thrilled in my youth when I heard about that book. Actually getting it was, well I don’t own a copy now nor will I ever. I don’t wan’t to see it go down the memory hole, however. What I want? Is an authentic treatment of Japanese myth done D&D style. Same for Chinese myth and Korean, and several others. Done with respect and including experts from those cultures.
 

lingual

Villager
Who complained about OA for the 3rd Edition? Is anybody angry with Dreamworks about Kung-fu panda? or Asian authors/mangaka writing romance novels set in the British Victorian Age.

Why not to can adapt your favorite manga/manwha/manhua?

Don't you know the coprodution Nezha (a Chinese god) with transformers? Or Hasbro working with Toei for the new serie of Power Rangers.
Oriental Adventures was 40 years ago. Times change. Some people are offended by the term when used to describe people. I am Asian and don't really care either way but can see their viewpoint. "Oriental" has been largely used to describe a "style". Asian-Americans who were born in the US and speak perfect English don't like being called "Oriental" because they are are American and not "Oriental" at all. It would best to just shy away from that term. If anything, it would be bad business for WOTC. The term has been used in a derogatory fashion in the past to describe people.
 

shesheyan

Explorer
I’m of Japanese descent. I was thrilled in my youth when I heard about that book. Actually getting it was, well I don’t own a copy now nor will I ever. I don’t wan’t to see it go down the memory hole, however. What I want? Is an authentic treatment of Japanese myth done D&D style. Same for Chinese myth and Korean, and several others. Done with respect and including experts from those cultures.
You might like this:
 


We don't worry about mixing elements from different places of Europe, for example monsters from Greek mythology or Irish Folklore. The famous fairy tales of Grimm brothers are from German traditions, but they are popular among English-speakers.

Confucius also said: “The Superior Man is in harmony but does not follow the crowd. The inferior man follows the crowd, but is not in harmony” (the quote is thruthful. I read it myself).

I worry about fantasy factions being used as allegories of the neighbours countries, for example the evil emperor would be an erstaz of Napoleon Bonaparte. Even when the publisher tries to be polite the DM could reuse the concept to show a different point of view. And Capcom is lying, Chinese goverment denies the presence of zombies or mutants in the city of Lanshiang.

Wizards of the Coast has got links with the Chinese videogame developer Perfect World Enternaiment thanks to the videogame Newerwinter Online and the coming soon Magic: Legends. I am sure WotC knows the right people for a politically correct OA.

You shouldn't blame WotC to destroy Asian folklore with Asian videogames are doing that.

I think it may be good for both sides. WotC finds new players among the otaku community, and Western market can know Asian cultures.



* why not an Onmyodo magic?

 

tommybahama

Adventurer
I'm also of Japanese descent. My mother was a first generation post-war immigrant and she used the term Oriental exclusively for the region. I don't think I ever heard her use the term "Asian" ever.

"Eastern Adventures" would be a good compromise for me since Kara-Tur is to the east of Faerun and still evokes some of the mystery they tried to capture with Oriental Adventures.

On the other hand, 90% of Native Americans respond in polls that they don't have a problem with Indian sports names but a vocal 10% are always trying to force their views onto the rest of society. I assume the same thing is going on here with the word Oriental.
 

Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters

Advertisement2

Advertisement4

Top