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Make your Characters Overweight, you Cowards

Make your Characters Overweight, you Cowards
From N4G - January 21, 2018
-Gespenst-1d 19h ago

Well the excuse that a fat character would not be able to do anything without tiring out is silly. Most characters we play as should not be able to survive the amount of punishment they receive, and yet they do, because the vast majority of games are highly unrealistic in almost every way, including the resilience of the player character. So, if we make thin people unrealistically resilient and athletic and so on, and if we do not have to be realistic when it comes to them, why do we have to be realistic when it comes to fat people? If athletic, acrobatic fat people are immersion-breaking to you, why are not hyper-resilient bullet-sponge thin people immersion-breaking to you too? It's no more or less realistic. Why do not you complain about the latter? There are examples of unrealistic fat people anyway - lots in fighting games - and no one really complains.

But, we should not be glorifying or encouraging obesity (i.e. leading people to believe that it's harmless and something they can pursue without fear of reduced quality of life and health complications; or that it's something cool), I do not care what anyone says. Plus-sized? Fine. But morbid obesity is not healthy, and a morbid obese person does not WANT or LIKE being morbidly obese, so you are not doing them a favor by refraining from "policing" their lifestyle. Lots of seriously fat people are unhappy not JUST because of fat-shaming, but because being really fat is an inherently physically uncomfortable way to be, and leads to other health issues that compound that discomfort. I am not saying fat-shame people, because that's no better than leaving them alone - it just leads to depression-fueled self-starvation or overeating and other things. We are partly responsible for anything we could have prevented, and we could tackle obesity if we approached it properly and respectfully, so we are therefore partly responsible for those bad things that happen to people as a result of their obesity, and I ca not really have that on my conscience. It bugs me that so many people do not have the quality of life they could have, and in many (but not all) cases because of predatory corporations pumping them full of junk food that is moreish and addictive by design for purposes of sales.

Aaaanyway, like anything misleading and unrealistic in games and other forms of entertainment, we need to be responsible and careful about how we portray it. Other than that, I am happy to play as any character, regardless of gender or race. I think people stick to characters that are similar to themselves so they can enjoy them as a kind of power fantasy, probably to compensate for their own lives being lacking. The avatar becomes a powerful body for them to inhabit - a different, superior body for their mind / brain that they control with the gamepad. Not all games have to be or should be realistic, but when we are making unrealistic games, we have to be responsible about it. Unrealistic things can put false ideas in peoples' heads about things they have never experienced first hand, and this can attract them to, or repel them from, those things. In other words, in the absence of first hand experience and exposure, such misleading stuff can cause people to believe things that are not true, and what we believe determines how we act.

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