Credit: Capcom — Monster Hunter World

Dear Video Game Character Creators: You Still Need Work

With all the strides that other forms of entertainment are making year after year, I can’t help but look at the opportunities being missed in video games. In particular, video games with character creators. To be frank, they can do better…a lot better. As of 2019, it’s quite clear there’s a still a lot to be learned and considered.

Skin Tone Ranges (or there lack of)

Credit: Gameplay Only
Credit: DeNA — Pokémon Masters

The Art of Lighting of Black & Brown Skin Properly

Moving on to the next matter that needs addressing for these games (well games in general): the lighting of melanated skin. This is more technical yet immediately recognizable and understood by people of color.

Credit: Pearl Abyss Corp. — Black Desert
Credit: Marvelous — Daemon X Machina

Hair choices, choices, choices…

The last area for improvement is without a doubt hairstyles in games. To use an analogy; finding diverse hair options in games is like looking for rain in a desert. They’ve skewed from nonexistent to inconsistent for as long as hair choices have been an option — unless it’s a sports game.

Credit: Blaistar
Credit: Microsoft — Sunset Overdrive
Credit: NCSOFT — Guild Wars 2

Push Back?

As I wrote this article, I thought of the push back and criticisms these topics tend to attract. To be clear, I mean the criticisms from other people of color.

Credit: Focus Home Interactive — The Surge 2

Recommendations

Now, with all this writing you’re probably wondering: what games do justice to people of color? I’m glad you asked as I have a few key recommendations for you.

Credit: Capcom — Monster Hunter World

I bat for PoCs, marginalized, equality, inclusion & geekdom. I'm warming the bench until coach subs me in. https://linktr.ee/jeffreyrousseau

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store