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One game idea I’m hot about is this little city-building/top-down shooting/role-playing God game named Ascension. CBTDSRPGG for short. It takes root in a little Universe I’ve created for my novels, with Gods that have ascended from mortality. Hey, look at me, I sound like a real novelist! Anyway, this would be a game where you play as one of those ordinary people who’s becoming a God. There’s nothing special about the people that ascend, most of the time.

I miss God games. They used to be the big ‘thing’ in PC gaming, up until shooters came along and took a creamy dump on the whole industry. Okay, my definition of ‘God game’ might be a bit loose. What I mean is, RTS and tycoons were everywhere, back in the good old days of PC gaming. It got a little dry sometimes, because maybe of them were basically the same game. It’s the same problem with the onslaught of shooters. Here, at least, each one could put you in a different role and indulge a different fantasy. You had Tropico, SimCity, Zoo Tycoon, Rollercoaster Tycoon, Civilization… Same genre, with wildly different feels. But now those games have fallen out of favor, since they don’t work terribly well on consoles, and PC gaming is throwing up in its own mouth.

Oh, right, I’m trying not to piss people off. Sorry about that. PC gaming forever!

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Oh right I guess I should clear up the whole transgender thing shouldn’t I.

I don’t know what to really say about this. I mean, I know what I have to say, but I don’t know how to say it. Maybe it’s because I myself don’t really know, or perhaps because it’s such a weird topic. No, think about it. What comes to your head when you think of a transgender/transsexual person?  Is it that guy from Rocky Horror Picture Show? Or, worse, one of those things from Rent? [EDIT: I have since learned that the character I was thinking of in Rent was actually just a drag queen. Still not the sort of image I’m fond of for myself!] I guess I could start by making clear that, whatever I am, it isn’t that.

I hate the phrase ‘girl trapped in a man’s body’, because it implies a sense of helplessness. Our bodies are a pretty damn versatile prison, but yes, sometimes they don’t come out quite the way we’d like. I don’t know, I already look pretty feminine, even though I may have the wrong bits. But right now, I’m not so much concerned about how I look as I am about how I feel. I’m starting this blog about a day after coming out to myself and my closest friend that, no matter what you want to call it, quite simply, I’m a girl. This comes after years of struggling with gender roles, sexuality, identity, and posing on the Internet as a girl character and practicing S&M. Yeah, it’s been a weird couple of years. I was sort of ignorant toward what it was to be transgendered, mostly because everything I’ve seen seems so weird and alien. I guess you could call it a lack of awareness, but, any knowledge I had came from Family Guy, or Rent (ew). It’s just always looked… wrong. Almost every single time, it’s men who are trying to be women and not quite making it, and usually it’s played for laughs.

I’m not quite sure how I feel about it. Hell, maybe I’m not transgendered at all. Maybe when I finally see a psychiatrist (which are difficult to find where I’m from), they’ll just give me a psychiatric bitch-slap and I’ll go back to being a boy. If I do go forward with this, I don’t know, it’ll be weird. I have no idea what sort of thing I’m getting into – and maybe that’s because the information available is kinda shitty.

Basically, for years I’ve tried to be a girl, only as a boy. Now, I might be about to piss off some of the girls out there, but I really don’t mean anything anti-feminist. Often, I would go online, sometimes as a girl and sometimes as a boy, and practice S&M… which would mean ‘slave/Master’. Yeah, I’ll try not to get into specifics. I don’t know why I was so attracted to it, and maybe I’m just a horny bitch, but as time went on I began to play as a boy less and less. I wanted to experience a deep relationship with a man, as a slave, and that’s really all I cared about for the longest time. What it did was, it put me in the role of a girl. It really put those gender roles and expectations on me, and even as a boy, I was treated as such. Even as a boy, it undoubtedly makes you the girl of a relationship, which might be what I was so fascinated with. Now, I’m not saying that femininity is defined through subservience, or that the role of a girl is intertwined with that of a slave. But, let’s face it… there are gender roles, and perhaps what I was looking for in S&M was an extreme of those roles. But those were what I really wanted.

I realized this in class, actually, when my closest friend and I were considering the possibility that I might be a girl. It looked God was giving me a giant cockslap and laughing about it or something, because that class was all about gender identity. Naturally, gender roles came up. I realized that pretty much everything that was up there, for men, I had no interest in. Seeking dominance; working a career; having ambition; strength; focusing on practical things… that wasn’t me. All the things on the girl’s side, on the other hand, seemed to match me perfectly. And just as well, my best friend was insisting that I was probably a girl.

I flirted with the idea of being bigender. Honestly, I kind of like the idea. I could just go with that and save myself the hassle of getting a sex change – which is good, because I hear they cut your dick in half and turn it inside out, which strikes me as slightly fucking horrifying. A bigender person is probably closer to what Natives would call a ‘two-spirited’ person, who had the spirits of both a boy and a girl. Who knows. Maybe I do have two souls floating around in me. But right now, I’ve been feeling less and less like a male. Maybe I’m embracing my feminine side a little too much, but I’ve gone headfirst into this, and now I’m sort of agreed.

At this point, or at least at the time of this writing, I’m a girl. I’m trying to look like a girl, act like a girl, and talk like a girl. I’m unofficially changing my name, my friends are using feminine pronouns and refer to me as a girl… Basically, I’m slowly transforming into one. Just with the wrong bits.

As for how this relates to the blog, perhaps it’s best I put ‘Gender Identity’ as the topic up there. If that’s what it is when you’re reading this, I guess I did just that! I don’t know what I am, for sure, so I might as well talk about it, which is partially what this blog was meant for. Mostly, my interest is in writing and in game design, but this is probably the big ‘thing’ in my life right now. So, for anyone interested, and anyone who’s going through something like this, this is where I’m going to talk about what I’m going through and how I’m going to deal with it. And, well, if you don’t care, don’t worry. I’ll try to be light about it.

The thing is, I’ve never defined myself through my sexuality. Before this, I was simply ‘gay’, but I never let that define me, either. I don’t know if I should say I was being ‘normal’, but I was. I mean, all it means to be gay is, you like the same sex. In the same way, being transgendered simply means that I’m a girl in another body. That doesn’t mean everything I do is going to revolve around it, and it doesn’t mean it’s going to come up in everything I do. It’s a pretty simple concept, which really shouldn’t affect how I talk about video games.

Okay, so we’re clear on that. I’ll try to keep a lid on it unless I actually have something crucial to say, and try not to make the blog all about my wish for a vagina. Dammit, I want to talk about game design, and I intend to do it.

Again; right now my tagline says ‘this is a blog about transgenderism and video games’. Probably likely to change. I should go ahead and talk about one and help define this thing a little bit. Might as well start with the most interesting and unique topic of the two!

Which is obviously video games.

When I’m not busy being an amateur novelist who spends too much time thinking and not enough writing, I like to be an amateur game designer who spends too much time thinking and not enough developing. In order to continue my streak of being as unproductive as possible, I’ve decided to write, but mostly about game design. Thus, I can get absolutely nowhere in both potential careers at the same time.

A lot of my ideas are, naturally, too ambitious to do in my spare time. Okay, no, that’s not fair – I could do one, if I could actually commit to a project. In fact, I have done two full games (and on that note, one novel), both of which were done for school. One received a 90, though I personally think it sucked. A lot. The other, which I’m much happier about, received a spanking mark of 100. Those would be percentages. Though, these assignments were ‘do whatever you want’, two-week assignments, which most of the time comes down to doing an essay or a short story, so fully-functioning video games probably surprised the teachers so much they had no idea how to mark it. Still, though, I’ve gotten myself into thinking I know a little something about game design.

So I’m going to be tossing out a few ideas for games, possibly serialized, so I can talk about unique features I’m most interested in. I’m also inevitably going to dust off my beret and talk about ‘games as art’ while drowning in a pool of my own pretension. It’s a popular topic these days, I know, so I’ll try to shut up about it unless I actually have a point to make.

I feel dumb saying all this without giving any actual examples. Like a politician making promises. They should have a special term for that. Politicipromises. Promiliticians. Speaking of; no politics. Even with the whole ‘transgender’ thing taken into account, I’m going to avoid politics like it’s Pandora’s Box. Mostly because it is. I mean, I loved following the 2008 US Presidental Elections as much as the next person, really I did. But now political talk (politalk!) is only really good for calling down a shitstorm, which I don’t actually enjoy all that much. Not to mention, ‘transgenderism and video games’ probably narrows down my potential audience enough that I think it’s best I stay away from anything that can narrow it down further. If I ever feel the need to piss off every prospective reader, maybe I’ll do a long rant about health care and abortion and gay rights all at the same time. One big cocktail of polarizing opinions. However, I like the idea that people might actually read this thing, so no. No cocktails.

Okay, I think that about does it for my first real blog post ever! Hopefully I didn’t come off as an irritating, self-righteous little bitch. I look forward to rambling about video games and art and all that in the near future. Also the whole ‘girl-but-not-really’ thing. But that’s not interesting.

Right now, at the time of this writing, the tagline up there reads ‘a blog about transgenderism and video games’. I could post a long thing about what this blog is and why I’m doing it, but that about sums it up, really. So I guess there’s not much to do but introduce myself. My name is Lily, and this is my blog. Geddit? The Lilypad!

I’m so sorry.

I know these two topics don’t exactly make for a very broad audience, but if someone out there does happen to be reading this, then… hey, here’s hoping I can find some way of entertaining you. If you’re interested in gender identity, or video games, or heaven forbid both, this may well be something you want to keep in your Bookmarks tab for the next little while. Or, you know, I could just forget it exists. Which is probably likely.

I’ll post something for each topic, I’m guessing, in a short while. Just so I can define this thing a little bit more.