Bloodmoon Episode 3: BloodRayne Part 3

(3 comments)

Edited text from the video description:

Bloodmoon is a series that looks at the evolution and apotheosis of specific themes and archetypes throughout various video games via the medium of full playthroughs with open discussion prompts.

Questions and observations:

Thunder and lightning is obviously an old horror trope. In the context of mythology and religion, however, they are sometimes seen as awe-inspiring signs of a divine presence. In the Yoruba religion, from which some of Voodoo is derived, Shango (also called Jakuta) is an Orisha, or divine spirit. A deified ancestor known for being a tyrannical ruler in life, his mortal reign ended when has palace was destroyed by lightning during a thunderstorm and has been associated with the natural forces of storms as an Orisha. He is also associated with the colour red, and was venerated highly in the African-American diaspora, whose ancestors valued him as a symbol of resilience and resistance during the time of slavery.

In spite of various controversies surrounding character design in video games, there is a certain multifacted way we, as players, can relate to avatars like Rayne. How, if at all, does this change when that level of agency is removed and the game is translated to something like a Let's Play?

Take note of the paintings on the wall of Town Hall. George Washington (a noted slave owner). The Last Supper. Among other pictures of Great White Western Culture.

The Deputy is a certain kind of libertarian, not to mention Nerd Culture, ideal: The heroic lone wolf male alone during the apocalypse (a zombie apocalypse, no less) holed up in a super-secure makeshift fortress with “all the guns [he] needs” (note Rayne's double entendre). It takes Rayne to point out it's “only a matter of time” before the mutates and Mairaisreq “find a way in”, just like she did. Life, and nature, always finds a way, and fighting it will always be a losing battle in the end. And even so he can't help but flirt with her and flaunt his rank. Not that this helps him realize she's literally imprisoned.

BloodRayne on GOG

BloodRayne on Steam

Mods used:

BloodRayne XBOX 360 Controller Support

 

Comments

Comment deleted 1 month, 3 weeks ago

Comment deleted 1 month, 3 weeks ago

Gilly 1 month, 3 weeks ago

The removal of agency that comes with the transition from video game to lets play does go a long way to scuppering the "Rayne as female power fantasy" reading I've been going with for the previous two entries.

Slight tangent here, but this series actually gave me a minor revelation about a subject that's been confusing me. There are plenty of female character designs (Ivy from the Soul Caliber series comes to mind) that were sexualised to such a degree that I can't understand how someone wouldn't cringe at it or for that matter why they ended up in the game in the first place. So I was rather confused when I found that a not insignificant number of women cosplay as them. I honestly didn't know what they saw in these characters.

But that's sort of the point you made here. If you are a woman playing these characters in a video game, then these characters can still function as a power fantasy. In spite of the character designs being built for the male gaze, the very nature of video games pushes these characters into being power fantasies.

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