All but the most conservative Americans can agree that the entertainment industry, and the gaming industry in particular, is in dire need of more diversity in its characters and voices. It doesn’t take a revolutionary to see that the faces of games across all platforms overwhelmingly represent white men. That’s why this new indie game is taking a stand—by including a single woman in its otherwise entirely white male cast, and frankly, that’s enough.
The game, Revenge of the Downtrodden, is being developed and published by Baristorm Games, with game director Bob Bagnon at the forefront. “Diversity hasn’t always been at the front of our minds here at Baristorm,” Bagnon tells us, “until we realized how much money there was to be made from it, or lost, depending on who you ask. That’s why we hope to make a bold new statement with Revenge of the Downtrodden by including a character that we hope 100% of women will be able to resonate with, and if not, hey, at least we tried, and we deserve to be praised for that.”
The female character, Veronica Walker, is reportedly a no-nonsense intelligence agent with a vulnerable side who acts as an informant and de facto “quest giver” for the male protagonist. Despite her presence throughout the game’s story, she reportedly has almost no impact of her own on the overall plot, the most notable exception being her inexplicable transformation into the hero’s love interest later in the game. She dresses how you would expect, a decision that Bagnon described as Veronica “taking charge of her sexuality.”
“Veronica holds such a special place in our hearts, and we’re all so excited to bring her to life,” says lead narrative designer David Jones. “We’re really moving into uncharted territory here, and we’re incredibly brave for doing so. Who knows what’s next for us? A black character, maybe? He’d be a man, of course. Can’t give him too many things. Know what? He’s white.”
Revenge is planned for release early next year. We can’t wait to play a game that takes such a bold new stance towards representation for those who truly need it most: secret agents who look like supermodels.
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