There were several pieces up this past weekend, and a resulting lively dialogue, about the role that race plays in videogames. Game|Life talks very cogently on the subject, which got kick-started by a post on the microscopiq site highlighting important black game characters. The article asks "Jade Is Black?", highlighting the role that racial ambiguity can have in making a player empathize with a title's protagonist. Writes Kohler: "Video games put the control of the main character into the player's hands. They ask us to become the character. It's easier for anybody to identify with Jade because Jade can stand in for anything. Ellis wants more black characters in video games, and Jade, if we go by the layout of his article, is his number-one favorite. It is quite possible that he felt a stronger connection with Jade than with other game characters who are definitely black. What does that say about the power of racial ambiguity? " So, do you care about race in videogames? If so, how so?
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