Are there any games that do justice to modern Asia?

I’ve been ramping up on Urban Shadows, which I really like. That said, it’s been making me thinking about how little focus there is on Asia in these settings (the dark streets book does have two settings, Bangalore and a part of Tokyo). Outside of Akita-esque neo-tokyo cyberpunk stuff, Asia seems poorly represented–but I really don’t know, because I’m not super in the know (thus this thread!). This is a shame, because there is so much interesting stuff happening in Asia beyond stereotypical depictions.

There are a lot of reasons why I imagine this is the case…in China at least, roleplaying is not a big thing as far as I’ve seen. I imagine Western game writers are writing what they’re familiar with, and don’t want to do a disservice to areas they don’t know as well etc etc. Still, I’m curious what is out there. I’m half inspired to make something like dark streets but for Chinese cities but…I don’t know if I like urban shadows that much :wink:

Edit: the original title was “Asian cities” but this goes beyond just cities, though cities (esp in the interesting way Urban Shadows explores them) are a particular interest of mine

1 Like

Clio Yun-su Davis’s The Long Drive Back from Busan, maybe? [Link: http://www.cysdavis.com/?page_id=356]

A two hour long freeform game about members of a k-pop boy group struggling with balancing their ambitions with the sacrifices they have made for their careers. Recipient of the 2017 Golden Cobra Challenge award for Best Game That Incorporates Meaningful, Non-Romantic Relationships.

I haven’t played it, but I remember it being discussed on the Asians Represent! podcast.

4 Likes

I feel stupid but I guess that podcast is probably a good place to check! I just don’t listen to many podcasts (well, any) these days, but I can still check out what they’ve explored, as this seems directly relevant to what they’d talk about!

1 Like

The South East Asia design scene has been doing some really interesting and creative things. I mostly follow through Twitter, though I know many of the designers are also involved in various Discords and post games on itch.

If you check out the #RPGSEA hastag on Twitter, it will bring up a number of designers and projects.

7 Likes