On Discomfort

Real Talk.

Sometimes we need uncomfortable games. Sometimes we need games that will throw us out of our comfort zone and ask us to talk about things that are taboo, or discomforting, or that are a real part of human experience but that we don't like to talk about because it's sometimes better to "just look the other way". 

These games should of course be designed with care, incorporating safety measures, safewords, and well defined boundaries to ensure that no one is being pushed past their limits of comfort. But just because a game may require these doesn't mean that game shouldn't exist. 

We need catalysts to break down walls so we can have a discussion about some of the real uncomfortable shit that's out there. Whether that catalyst is a movie, a book, a speech, a protest, or yes, a game, we need them. We need to create more and more experiences through which "uncomfortable" topics can be discussed. Where we can examine and understand them. 

I recognize that I have a heaping pile of privilege on my shoulders. I can never speak to the experiences that my friends and acquaintances who are marginalized on a daily basis. I don't have those experiences behind me, and I will likely never experience things like that myself, but that doesn't mean that I don't want to try and understand it so that I can be a better advocate for them. 

What I do have is a platform as a game designer. What I do have is the ability to create some goddamn uncomfortable games which may help shine a light at some of the really serious problems that are going on. Do you have to play them? No. But that doesn't mean I won't make them.