Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

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TorgHacker
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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby TorgHacker » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:09 am

Badger3d wrote:First off I am Transgender, my take is that I wasn't thrilled with the wording as it sounds like its creating a separate rule for transgender people, and mandates this change rather then allowing it, I would make this more inclusive and open to GM player interpretation, also transgender is a verb not a noun.


Transgender isn't a noun either. It's an adjective. Where am I using transgender as a verb?

I am definitely going to be changing the wording though. I did not expect to get the push back on this that it's getting, at all.

Honestly, I'm of half a mind to just dump the idea entirely. There's no way that I'm going to be able to write this in the space that I have, and have everybody be happy. :?
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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby Badger3d » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:32 am

TorgHacker wrote:Transgender isn't a noun either. It's an adjective. Where am I using transgender as a verb?

sorry meant to say "adjective not noun"

"When someone who is transgender transcends" looks like a noun to me

TorgHacker wrote:I am definitely going to be changing the wording though. I did not expect to get the push back on this that it's getting, at all.

Honestly, I'm of half a mind to just dump the idea entirely. There's no way that I'm going to be able to write this in the space that I have, and have everybody be happy. :?


I hope you keep this, I'd rather have the original entry then nothing, but I did want to add my 2 cents, and anything worth doing will be controversial, listen to others advice then make up your own mind.

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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby TorgHacker » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:54 am

It'd be a noun if it was

"...anyone who is *a* transgender..."

Compare to "anyone who is blue" or "anyone who is happy" or "anyone who is sad"

But as to the other point, all I'm hearing from other trans people is "It's not good enough" and nobody seems to be happy that I made a specific point to make sure that transgender people were included in this.

Because we are getting grief about including it at all from some quarters, and if all I'm going to get is grief from a sidebar, and nobody's happy, I'm not sure what the point is in including it.
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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby Zackzenobi » Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:04 pm

TorgHacker wrote:
Badger3d wrote:First off I am Transgender, my take is that I wasn't thrilled with the wording as it sounds like its creating a separate rule for transgender people, and mandates this change rather then allowing it, I would make this more inclusive and open to GM player interpretation, also transgender is a verb not a noun.


Transgender isn't a noun either. It's an adjective. Where am I using transgender as a verb?

I am definitely going to be changing the wording though. I did not expect to get the push back on this that it's getting, at all.

Honestly, I'm of half a mind to just dump the idea entirely. There's no way that I'm going to be able to write this in the space that I have, and have everybody be happy. :?


Please dont dump it. You can't make All of the people happy All of the time. I think you have the personal expertise to write this correctly. Part of Scifi is exploring parts of our own society by showing it in different context. Plus it just makes sense the way you did it.

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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby Yoric » Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:24 pm

Zackzenobi wrote:Please dont dump it. You can't make All of the people happy All of the time. I think you have the personal expertise to write this correctly. Part of Scifi is exploring parts of our own society by showing it in different context. Plus it just makes sense the way you did it.


Agreed. It might be improved by a small rewording, but I believe that it is a good thing to have! Most table-top RPGs entirely ignore anything queer, I'm happy to see one make an effort at exploring some of the consequences of being transgender in a sci-fi society.

For what it's worth, my version of the Cyberpapacy (which I'll be happy to replace with yours once I have received the PDFs :) ) had a completely different take on this. In my version, bodies are cheap, the flesh is nothing and only the Divine Reality matters, so being transgender is treated as a non-issue, now please return to your online addicitions while we pump away your Possibilities.

edit Oops, looks like I've used a word that doesn't mean what I thought it did. Apologies!
Last edited by Yoric on Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby utsukushi » Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:26 pm

Sometimes something you think is the smallest little pebble causes the biggest darned ripples. I'm sorry, Deanna, I didn't mean this at all. I wasn't trying to push back or say you were wrong in the way you were doing it, I just saw that - the impossibility of actually playing someone who is... bleh, there are no good words for this, but say, "actively" transgender - as a possibly unintended side effect, and wanted to make sure it was intentional.

Gargoyle, I do see what you're saying about it not really going away just because someone has transformed by whatever means. And I realized that my reaction was based on my interpretation of Transformation in the game, where it doesn't just change who you are going forward, but kind of who you've always been, and therefor sort of would take that away completely. Which I'm also not saying would be a bad thing from an in-character perspective; it sounds pretty awesome, frankly. But from a player perspective, it felt limiting.

And the idea that everyone becomes their best self... is also awesome, but that seems to maybe deserve more than a sidebar, like maybe a mention in the Core book. It also seems like something that applies to a lot more than just transgender characters, and it does get... funny. Like, how do you decide what's someone's best self? I've known, for instance, deaf people who would absolutely have full range hearing if they could, and others who consider their deafness part of their heritage and something to be proud of, and of course they're both right. And the obvious answer that this decision is indeed internal totally works in pretty much all cases, as far as I can tell, except that it would require more writing, and the CP book probably isn't the right place to suddenly put all that and we don't have time machines to go back and add it to Core. Which is a pretty big "except". Bleh.

Quite frankly, I don't know. I DO know, though, that this is the first game I've actually seen reach out and even mention transgender that wasn't specifically written to center around the QUILTBAG community from the start. And I think backing off from that just because there's no way to please everyone would be a bigger mistake than you could possibly make by just sticking to your principals and following your heart. I can only speak for myself, but I didn't mean to be pushing back; I was honestly just asking.

And I'm sorry that most of this isn't worded very well; our language needs serious development on this whole subject, and adding in the fantasy elements of Torg isn't helping.

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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby TorgHacker » Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:28 pm

BTW, this is a good resource for knowing how to (and how not to) talk about transgender people.

Problematic words are lower down. ("transgenderism" is one of them)

https://www.glaad.org/reference/transgender
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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby Gargoyle » Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:55 pm

utsukushi wrote:Gargoyle, I do see what you're saying about it not really going away just because someone has transformed by whatever means. And I realized that my reaction was based on my interpretation of Transformation in the game, where it doesn't just change who you are going forward, but kind of who you've always been, and therefor sort of would take that away completely. Which I'm also not saying would be a bad thing from an in-character perspective; it sounds pretty awesome, frankly. But from a player perspective, it felt limiting.



I can understand that.

In the movie the Matrix, the character Switch was originally going to be male in real life, and female in the Matrix, thus the name. She was trans. The Wachowskis were pressured by the studio not to do that. So they settled for an androgynous look for her that was consistent.

Now that seems like what some people want for the Godnet, and I agree it is quite cool, but there are certain things about Avatars in the Godnet vs the Residual Self Images in the Matrix that make that difficult, as well as things like wimpy Steve Rogers looking like Capt America in there. It's that the ability to disguise yourself is basically a perk, it's one of the things that makes cyberdecks and deckers useful, for instance. The Godnet is monitored too, and if you can look totally different it makes being hunted much harder. And Deanna, because she is evil, didn't want it to be harder for the Church to find you.

So she is certainly considering game design in this, and player choice, but there is a bigger picture than just character concepts such as Switch from the Matrix.
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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby TorgHacker » Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:09 pm

utsukushi wrote:Sometimes something you think is the smallest little pebble causes the biggest darned ripples. I'm sorry, Deanna, I didn't mean this at all. I wasn't trying to push back or say you were wrong in the way you were doing it, I just saw that - the impossibility of actually playing someone who is... bleh, there are no good words for this, but say, "actively" transgender - as a possibly unintended side effect, and wanted to make sure it was intentional.



It's not really any individual person, but that I was only getting negative feedback about it from everyone commenting.

That said, just because we say X doesn't mean ALWAYS X.

Hespera was mentioned earlier as seeming to contradict the sidebar, and that's absolutely true. It _does_ contradict the sidebar. But it also contradicts much of the Reality chapter of the Core Book too in that _everyone_ transformed on the island during the axiom wash, not just 30%, and everyone who wasn't female transformed to become female. Which isn't supposed to happen.

We don't explain why that happened. We might explore that in the future though.



And the idea that everyone becomes their best self... is also awesome, but that seems to maybe deserve more than a sidebar, like maybe a mention in the Core book. It also seems like something that applies to a lot more than just transgender characters, and it does get... funny. Like,



Yes, there's several things we've slowly introduced that would go into the Core Book, but we can't really do that (yet anyways). But if we did happen to do some sort of "Revised and Expanded" core book, that would be in there (along with Disfavored, softpoints, more variety of hard points, and Eternity and Void powers).
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Re: Transgender characters in Torg Eternity

Postby Ampersands » Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:19 pm

utsukushi wrote:Quite frankly, I don't know. I DO know, though, that this is the first game I've actually seen reach out and even mention transgender that wasn't specifically written to center around the QUILTBAG community from the start. And I think backing off from that just because there's no way to please everyone would be a bigger mistake than you could possibly make by just sticking to your principals and following your heart.


What utsukushi said. +1 to the encouraging posts to please keep the sidebar, I love and think it’s important that it’s included. (Me: cis gay man who wants to see my wider fam supported.) One of the players I have lined up for my game is genderfluid and I think they’re going to love seeing this discussed, too.


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