Re: Gender

Barry Eynon (
Mon, 26 Sep 1994 14:14:33 -0700

Gender as it's being discussed here is really just chrome, though I'll
admit to referring to a number of my characters as female, just for the
heck of it.

Sex, on the other hand, is a different matter. (Stop your sniggering).

The lack of representation of the effect of mating and reproduction on
behavior, probably the most powerful human drive (being highly selected for
by evolution) seems to me to be a major blind spot in most fantasy games.
Where would the Illiad and the Odyssey be without Helen, or the Arthurian
cycle without Gwenivere?

I can imagine a number of ways to work it into an Oly-like game. Player
nobles could marry other player nobles, or take spouses from the general
population. Presumably a faction would represent an extended family, and
marriages would have to be between different factions. Children would be
born after some period of gestation, presumably involving some activity
restrictions on the woman. Children would become a long-term source of
noble points, but would have to be raised for some number of years (10?)
before they could be trained or move by themselves. Their stats would
presumably be age-dependent. Not all children might turn out to be "noble",
perhaps a larger proportion of noble-noble unions than noble-common unions.

Protecting one's family then becomes an important game activity. Killing
someone's spouse might force a noble to adopt a permanent HOSTILE for the
perpetrator. Etc.

If you want to avoid sticky problems like modeling rape, etc. make it that
sex is always voluntary and occurs only between married people.

Anyway, these are just some thoughts. I place this in conjunction with the
fact that, as far as I've noticed, 100% of the players of Oly are male, and
leave further speculation to the reader.


Barry Eynon

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