I’M UPDATING MY MANIFESTO AS I NOW BETTER UNDERSTAND WHAT I’M DOING AND AM MUCH, MUCH ANGRIER.
I’m building a game to parody the entire 4X genre and Civilization in particular. I love those games, but I don’t love what they say and I’m going to clean this place up.
I’m building a 4X game that’s not nationalistic, that’s not imperialistic and that’s not fucking insane. The real world isn’t zero-sum. I don’t care if great art comes from another country, I’m going to celebrate it anyway. The moon landing is a victory for the entire world, not just the flag that got planted. I’m not going to see if climate change means that my nation can score more points. What the fuck does it even mean for a nation to win?
You know what else? This isn’t the best of all worlds. Progress isn’t equal to Western ideals or industrialization or whatever else you think the modern world represents. The happiness of a people isn’t just a productivity bonus. I’m building a game with some fucking heart.
I’m going to tell you one more thing right now. This is a game where you can try empathy. Wars of opportunity are unethical and if you want to play opportunistically, I’m not going to stop you, but I’m not going to pretend that you’re fucking clever for doing so. I’m building a game that wants you to be better.
In this game, you play a student in a group because for some reason we are less harsh about a country being unethical than a person. You write about the Raj, about Churchill and about Gandhi so that you understand that these things are real and so that you understand that these things are complicated.
I’m making a game that’s not afraid and you’re going to play it.