Indeed. As many publishers are proving.I kind of feel like the goalpost are ever shifting. I didn't know we were limiting problematic to cultures only, I thought we were talking about problematic elements included in gaming in a general sense. So it is okay for game companies to include potentially triggering elements in their games. I'm glad we've settled that.
Yes to a degree, but lets take your example of humans within Forgotten Realms.You didn't get what I said.
Slavery is one of those things that's a product of our human history, religion, culture, etc. Fantasy worlds are completely different. They have different histories, different religions, different cultures. The presence of magic, both arcane and divine, would make major changes, as would the presence of non-human intelligent species. Even if humans were the only species, they would still have a very different history.
I've used published settings to save myself time, as I preferred investing my creative energies elsewhere within the hobby (homebrew mechanics, localised world-building, storyline, character arcs)You can't say something is authentic when the worlds itself are so different--because you can also easily say that having a fantasy world that never had slavery is also authentic. Or that hasn't had slavery in a thousand years, or that slavery has strict rules which include no abuse and automatically freeing the slave after four years, or that every time a person tries to enslave another, Trithereon (Greyhawk god of freedom) sends a posse of clerics to smite the slaver. They're all equally authentic because you, the GM, are making that world up.The only reason many species have been slavers or human-eaters is because Gygax et al needed Always Evil monsters to be killable; they weren't trying to do actual world-building, the type that involves looking at every single aspect of a culture's development and seeing how that affects every other aspect of its development.
To be fair yes. But Greed, Jealousy, the need to Dominate/Rule and the Trappings of Power would be prevalent in most intelligent species as I see it as well as the Dislike of the Other. So racism and slavery are not such alien ideas for me to include within a setting - whether in its past history or its current. Yes there are enlightened species, yes there are species that hide away from others, but for the most part wars usually result in Genocide, Slavery, Tribute Payments or Peace.When you say "authentic," what you really mean is "I don't feel like making something else up, but this is dark so it feels realistic."
Mystara - it is a D&D ode to fantasy earth, that sadly was never finished.Which is...?
It is a fair question but I do feel it has been answered in more ways than 'it's common in history' and 'we don't shy away from hard topics'. For me it is a very setting specific thing. Not all settings need something like this in it. A setting meant to evoke parts of the ancient world? They might need it. A setting like dark sun where the cruelty of a harsh and resource limited plenty are key parts of the setting, one that draws heavily on sword and sandal....I can definitely see how it adds to it. Dark Sun definitely seems like it loses something if you take away the slavery element. That won't be the case for most other D&D settings. Spartacus is a legitimate campaign premise for instance. Slavers are a very credible threat to throw at a party (I always find I react much more strongly if I know we are being attacked by slavers instead of say bandits because my character could end up fighting in the pits or working salt mines). Again, I don't think they are for ever setting, I don't think they are for everyone. And I certainly think there is no reason to be a jerk about it if you are including it or you are running a setting that has it (If I have a player at my table who has issues with it, I'm not going to be cruel to them and say 'find another game', I'll work with them). In general I think the less cruel we are overall to one another in these conversations the better (a lot of what I am reacting to when I say things have become too puritanical is some of the cruelty I feel I am perceiving).
I was literally quoting AnotherGuy. You can go back and check. Blame them if your line got stolen.Warts and all was my line-do not attribute it to others.
So... you would spring enslavement, rape, and torture on your PCs? I'm very glad I'm not in that game.As to the player, they don't. Save the last bullet for themselves, is always a good idea. Personally, I don't see how you could play a game in which combat was a frequent factor and players not have a justified fear of being taken alive.
And that's the thing: these all come off as bad excuses to continue using them rather than actually addressing the why. It's still just set-dressing, but we're justifying ourselves with history books instead of saying we're big damn heroes who are going to fix it. It doesn't address what slavery is, what it does to people, what happens to people in slavery, and how it is a weapon used to destroy cultures... it just all just makes it into "flavor", which is part of the point people are making about how it is used poorly.
It's certainly capable of frightening away high profile creators.
They behaved exactly like real-world humans because they were written that way, not because they had to act that way.Yes to a degree, but lets take your example of humans within Forgotten Realms.
Power and subjugation was rife - The FR Netherese behaved exactly like the humans of Earth who had power and influence. Magic just exacerbated and accelerated the process and it was their own catastrophic errors, as well as the intervention of the gods and other creatures that led to things getting "fixed". In Mystara, the same thing occurs. Magic is but a weapon that is used to impose one's will.
The Glantrian Mages (human mostly, but elves too) practised their magical experiments on halfling, dwarf and gnome captives.
Because it's not authentic. You're looking at humans in the real world and deciding that non-human creatures in a fantasy world act in the exact same way.To be fair yes. But Greed, Jealousy, the need to Dominate/Rule and the Trappings of Power would be prevalent in most intelligent species as I see it well as the Dislike of the Other. So racism and slavery are not such alien ideas for me to include within a setting - whether in its past history or its current. Yes there are enlightened species, yes there are species that hide away from others, but for the most part wars usually result in Genocide, Slavery, Tribute Payments or Peace.
Why is there so much pushback for 1 of those if our aim here in this dicussion is to strive for authenticity?
Not who you're responding to, but. I tried to read the books. Got through the first one and the only reason I didn't throw it in the trash was because it was a library book. Raping a 13-year-old girl 'till she liked it is a sickening and insulting trope.
One PC was captured by the enemy in my ToD campaign. I faded to black during the interrogation scene of the PC by the enemy and left it all up to the player's own imagination as to how that may have played out. Nothing was established during play only that an interrogation scene took place. My table includes friends, we had one new person join us within the last 8 months and although we never had a session 0 with him - our table is a good judge of character if the person will fit in with our style or not.But here's the other thing. You want your games to seem "weighty and authentic," "warts and all," so how does a player know that they aren't going to be subjected to those horrible things?
What is your goal here? That no fantasy creatures are/should be slavers?They behaved exactly like real-world humans because they were written that way, not because they had to act that way.
Because it's not authentic. You're looking at humans in the real world and deciding that non-human creatures in a fantasy world act in the exact same way.