Showing posts from November, 2020

Colonialism and Fantasy in Sandbox Games

I should clarify something from my recent ramblings on Twitter: farming games (not games about farming but the generic treatment of games about farming) are not necessarily colonialist, but they certainly present a petite bourgeois fantasy, and colonialism up to a certain scale is a petite bourgeois venture. I think there's a good comparison to be made between this topic and D&D: does D&D necessarily present a colonialist fantasy, or does it speak to a broader petite bourgeois fantasy? The answer lies in the text of the game more than its structure because the aim is to scavenge the frontier, bring order to chaos, get some land, become a lord (or lady, as Gygax would [not] have it). Gold for XP speaks to this, and not just as a vestige of the original Blackmoor game: the bottomless accumulation of gold is the adventurer's drive for jouissance, their plus-de-jouir. This is approached from an extra-fetishistic angle, i.e. gold is considered innately valuable outside of th