SARASOTA, Fla. — Local college student Sara Withers complained about a lack of good dialogue options when speaking to her parents about the continued oppression of racial minorities in America.
“I start out with ‘the Founding Fathers were white supremacists’ or ‘America’s schools are still segregated,’ assuming those statements would be the beginning of a full dialogue tree,” said Withers after a Zoom call with her family. “But no matter what I say, they always answer with the same canned line about gun violence in Chicago. It’s so unnatural. Totally breaks the immersion.”
In addition to the limited responses, Withers also complained of moments when the conversation would “glitch out” and end up on a different topic completely.
“My parents were mad about NFL players protesting, saying it was disrespecting the troops,” said Withers. “I tried to tell them about police brutality, but then something weird happened, and all of a sudden they were talking about how America wasn’t the only country that ever had slaves. What kind of person would say something like that? Shit is totally broken.”
After waiting several years for a patch, Withers eventually gave up and started trying to pave over the issue with mental roleplaying.
“Usually if a video game character has shitty dialogue, I come up with a headcanon where they’re really a space alien in disguise or something,” said Withers. “In the case of my parents, I imagine that they’re good people who just don’t know any better. It’s a little fantastical, but it’s better than having to confront that I was raised by deeply racist people who stay ignorant on purpose.”
When reached for comment for this article, parents Phil and Jane Withers immediately turned hostile, permanently locking all further dialogue options, whatever they might have been.
Like this article? Check out our podcast! The Hard Drive Podcast is available on all podcast apps.