Disliked Elements, Mechanics, and Tropes

yeah but it brings ludo narrative disonance i think a better way is not to have a really long timer so you can go out and do things or have temporary medication for the thing so you can keep doing what you are doing

I mean it makes sense. The game has the intent of always being online so you can be invaded. Sekiro was the only one where it wasn’t that way. Dark Souls as far as games go I didn’t care as much about pausing since most of the fights are short enough


To be fair regarding FromSoft games not having a pause, the constant autosaves mean you can just exit the game when you need to and jump back in right where you were. I guess if you’re in the middle of a boss fight that doesn’t work though.

Games where you’re forced to pick a character to romance, even though it’s not a specifically romance genre game. I love how many choice of games and hosted games have ace and aro representation in them, and I like to roleplay characters as close to my actual self I can get, so it really irks me when games that aren’t necessarily romance genre force romance in your face.


I feel this way with A Tale of Crowns. I know the game is marked as romance, but none of the ROs are attractive to me. I was more interested in ruling an empire, so it annoyed me that I was forced to choose RO.
I wish there was ‘friends-only’ option like in Wayhaven, then the game would be more fun for me.


I actually have the opposite problem as you- I’ve always wanted to try self-inserting, but every attempt dropkicks me out of suspension of disbelief SO QUICKLY. I myself am aro, which means relationships are HELLA complicated for me, and I have found all of zero games that let me have incredibly close friendships without doing romance-romance. Also media has always been escapism for me, diving into the intricacies of someone else from an omnipotent lens, and any reminder of my personal life while playing squicks me out hard. Idk, something about acknowledging my existence as like. A person that affects things weirds me out.
(however, It’s very interesting to see how you navigate IFs! Other people’s views are endlessly fascinating to me :DD!!)


Out of curiosity, which games do this?

I hope I’m not too late in adding my five cents to the discussion about pushover MCs here. I’m aware that a new thread specifically about that topic has been created, but as far as I could tell that thread was mainly to do with how to avoid writing such MCs. And since I only partially agree with the premise that such MCs shouldn’t be made, I wanted to share my thoughts here instead. Anyway, on to my own thoughts about this topic.

I do think that “pushover MCs”, in the sense of having to deal with a lot of disrespect and/or abusive behavior from the ROs and/or other important NPCs without any real opportunities to push back against that behavior on one hand and MCs who are weaker than the ROs and comparatively weak overall on the other are two separate issues and shouldn’t be treated as a single issue. And I certainly don’t feel the same about those two issues either.

When it comes to MCs who have to deal with abusive behavior and/or disrespect from ROs and/or other important NPCs without any opportunities for pushback against that behavior, I do, by and large, agree with all the people who thinks that this is a flaw that should be fixed. However, I do prefer when the MC can push back against that behavior in a way that isn’t overly aggressive, which to me includes things like basically making threats or being overly insulting back. While I don’t mind those being included in the possible responses, I do strongly prefer for the responses to also include things like the opportunity to just firmly but politely set your boundaries and maybe also to insult the character who engages in abusive behavior towards your MC in a more subtle way.

But when it comes to MCs who are significantly weaker than all the ROs and even quite weak overall, I don’t see anything wrong with it per se, though I also think there are some kind of HGs where that approach just isn’t right while there are other HG series where it’s a good fit. For stand-alones and series where the game aspect is quite important and/or with the focus on the MC being a hero and bringing about whatever is considered to be a happy ending in this context largely through use of their skills and other competencies instead of being focused on romance and/or having other kinds of focuses which means much less focus(if any) on the game aspects and on the MC being heroic and highly competent, I’d definitely much prefer that the MC is or eventually(during the first half of the series or standalone) turns into someone at least reasonably competent and skilled and/or powerful.

But if the HG(or COG or other kind of IF) to a large extent focus on romance and/or where, due to story reasons, the MC is supposed to not be particularly powerful or skilled and maybe actually being weak and/or unskilled instead I’m totally okay with the MCs being vastly outclassed by the ROs in terms of power, and being low on power and quite unskilled compared to most or all of the threats they face(. And I certainly don’t mind them being basically like damsels. Actually, when playing a male MC who romance female ROs, like I usually do, my MC taking on that role, is something that I definitely enjoy. There are so many romances out there where the male protagonist or love interest can only get the female love interest or protagonist by being really competent and/or confident and decisive, very often in addition to also being classically handsome, that it’s really refreshing with a romance where this isn’t the case. A romance where the male MC is treated like a precious price by a female RO, instead of having to prove himself of being worthy and maybe even having to jump through a lot of hoops to do so. And since the last kind of romance still(as far as i can tell) still seems to be most common type of male/female romance in real life and what at least most straight guys and boys and women and girls expect a romance to be like, it’s a kind of escapism that I enjoy to be able to experience in HGs, COGs and other IFs. I particularly enjoy HGs, COGs and other IFs with a female ROs who is protective of a male MC and I also enjoy it, when this also includes instances of her rescuing him. The protective female(and also romantically proactive female) RO is actually a kind of female RO i enjoy overall, even in less romance-focused IFs, though in such IFs it becomes more important that the MC is also reasonably skilled and is able to do stuff that, in one way or another, counts as heroic in that particular storyline(and I do certainly then also enjoy when the MC gets special abilities and grows more powerful).

In addition to me enjoying that particular dynamic as a player/reader, I think that it’s important in a more general sense, along with also having more fantasy-like IFs with a gender-selectable MC in that they do one of the things IFs like these do best, that is allowing the reader/player to experience things they rarely get to experience and explore in real life and/or fiction geared towards their gender and/or with a protagonist with their own gender. Just like power fantasy or power fantasy-like fiction with a male protagonist is much more common than power fantasy or power fantasy-like fiction with a female protagonist, fiction where the protagonist is, if not necessarily damsel-like, then at least someone who needs to be protected by their love interest and/or is generally the much more passive party in the romance, is still much more common with a female protagonist than with a male one. And I do think that it’s important to have plenty of IFs that allows the player/reader to experience the kind of scenarios and stories that they’ve rarely, if ever been given the chance to properly experience as a guy/boy or as woman/girl. If that particular scenario or story turns out to not be to the liking of the person in question, that is totally fine, but I do think it’s important that they at least get the chance to experience and explore it, so that they learn at least a little bit more about that experience and maybe also a bit more about themself

I guess it still wouldn’t prefer the MCs to be completely useless at everything, but for such IFs, I would often prefer the abilities of the MCs to being more supportive in nature, like them being “the smart guy”, the healer or other abilities that isn’t really combat-orientated. And I certainly wouldn’t mind those abilities being much less impressive than the abilities of the ROs.

But what I don’t like is when the writer separates between how damsel-like or how un-damsel like a female and a male MC can be or between female and male ROs when it comes to what extent you can explore this dynamic. For instance, like having much more potential instances of the MC being rescued or treated like a damsel by a male RO than a female RO and, conversely more potential instances of rescuing a female RO than a male RO or more instances of a female MC being treated like a damsel and/or a precious price than for a male MC. I think that it’s important that there are just as much opportunities for being the “damsel” or being treated as one for a male MC as for a female one and just as many opportunities to be rescued and treated like a damsel by a female RO as for by a male RO.

This is also one of the reasons why I in actual practice, if not necessarily, in theory, prefer gender-selectable ROs to gender-locked ones. It just makes it so much easier to explore many different dynamics without having to worry so much about what some people think such a romance “should” be like and can more easily allow each person to pick the RO with a dynamic that they like, without worrying about them being the wrong gender for their sexual orientation or that all the ROs of their preferred gender not being too their taste. It also makes it more easy for people to experiment with dynamics different from the ones that they’re normally used to.

Anyway, to get back to my main subject and to sum up my points; while I agree that it’s as general rule, important to give MCs the opportunity to push back against abusive behavior and similar types of behavior from the ROs and other important NPC, I think that there is nothing wrong per se in the MC being weak and/or unskilled compared to the ROs or otherwise in the context of that IF. How well it works, depends on the approach of that HG, COG or other kind of IF, if it’s more gamey/heroic or if it’s more romance-based and/or based on a much less heroic storyline. But if the story and approach itself doesn’t demand a more powerful and/or highly skilled MC, I think it’s also good to allow players/readers to interact with ROs who are more powerful and skilled than the MC and that having COGs, HGs and other IFs where the MCs are basically damsel-like is good to have as an option alongside more power fantasy-like COGs, HGs and other IFs as long as male MCs and MCs in general into women get as many options to explore those kind of dynamics as female MCs and MCs in general into men do.


Also, while the discussion of Red Embrace: Hollywood is happening: fuck games with content, hidden behind other content first. Are you telling me that I can’t have the full access to the game I bought? Yeah, how about I won’t buy it then, you can keep it.
Like, I can deal with a route appearing after finishing any of the others, keeping somethings locked behind one (1) walkthrough is a pain, but acceptable, especially if the game isn’t long. But how much replaying does RE:H needs? Six, seven, eight? I don’t remember the exact number, but it’s A LOT.