Historical VNS and disclaimers?

A place to discuss things that aren't specific to any one creator or game.
Forum rules
Ren'Py specific questions should be posted in the Ren'Py Questions and Annoucements forum, not here.
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
Virgichuu
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:47 pm
Projects: First Project I'm working on and it's an otome game: Forogotten
Tumblr: virgichuu
Deviantart: Virgichuu
Skype: Spica.art
Location: Morocco
Contact:

Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#1 Post by Virgichuu » Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:03 am

Greetings everyone! I hope you're doing well?
Well, sorry if this has been asked before but for a while, I've been pondering about some vn otome game idea that might or might not see the day!
It would mostly be romance/historical/drama genres but my issue here is to deal with disclaimers and difficulties that come with historical fiction!

To sum it up, I have many worries regarding this idea, on one hand I really wanted to share some of my country's history through since it's set during a very important period but I'm kinda scared of biased thinking and problems. That's why it's kind of sad that there are so few or almost next to 0 people to my knowledge who touch Moroccan history or are themselves Moroccan!

Anyway, the game is set during what everyone calls the French protectorate. I might check all my history textbooks as I have studied in a french school all my life and as everyone knows, there are many sides to history and how it's told depending on who talks about it I think? So the French protectorate was a time during which my country was under France colonisation (other parts of the country were under Spain or Portugal but I'd rather not come those but the country was mostly under French governance). So while most decision were made by France, the Sultan at the time (now we have kings) still had his position but had no power whatsoever.
I want this vn's protagonist to be a young Moroccan woman who obviously has her own views like most characters and my issue is how to deal with mention of political opinion, historical figures and events (mind you that most characters actually don't have a real, true historical role on a grand scale, I want to keep things as unproblematic as possible). What kind of disclaimers should be made? How should I deal with something so touchy? Should I atcually drop the idea to involve the characters in historical events in simply do something more like day-to-day or that has nothing to do with what's happening life, characters only dealing issues of their own?
I don't remember playing many games with historical mindsets aside from hakuoki so I'm really lost on how to deal this since it involves pov that might crash or something---Unlike a fanfiction I'm writing where I only stick to mentions of big events and historical accuracy!

Anyway, thank you for reading this long, long text of me rambling on my worries and I hope I can get some help! (If any of you are French or North African hello hello!♡)
Thanks in advance!☆

User avatar
parttimestorier
Regular
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2017 10:29 pm
Completed: No Other Medicine
Tumblr: parttimestorier
itch: janetitor
Location: Canada
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#2 Post by parttimestorier » Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:44 am

I don't know anything about Moroccan history, but I'd love to learn a bit about it through a VN! If you're worried about dealing with complex issues that a lot of people have different perspectives on, why not have different characters in the story express those different perspectives as well? You could even have them debate about it a bit, in a way that doesn't make it seem like you're clearly siding with any one of them.

Or for another option, maybe you could take inspiration from the real world events you're thinking of writing about, but fictionalize them a little more. For instance, you could make up names for a different imaginary country that's dealing with being under colonial rule. That way you might be more free to interpret things in your own way, without worrying that you're offending anyone by portraying a historical figure they like negatively or something.
ImageImageImage

User avatar
Virgichuu
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:47 pm
Projects: First Project I'm working on and it's an otome game: Forogotten
Tumblr: virgichuu
Deviantart: Virgichuu
Skype: Spica.art
Location: Morocco
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#3 Post by Virgichuu » Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:41 am

parttimestorier wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:44 am
I don't know anything about Moroccan history, but I'd love to learn a bit about it through a VN! If you're worried about dealing with complex issues that a lot of people have different perspectives on, why not have different characters in the story express those different perspectives as well? You could even have them debate about it a bit, in a way that doesn't make it seem like you're clearly siding with any one of them.

Or for another option, maybe you could take inspiration from the real world events you're thinking of writing about, but fictionalize them a little more. For instance, you could make up names for a different imaginary country that's dealing with being under colonial rule. That way you might be more free to interpret things in your own way, without worrying that you're offending anyone by portraying a historical figure they like negatively or something.
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to read my inquiry and even more for answering!
The way you put it is very interesting so I'll consider it! Especially the first paragraph--It will make me go back to my textbooks and how the other party really takes the events and how they reflected up upon it now! Thank you very much for suggesting those two ideas because they are quite helpful!

The colonial rule was ended thanks to years of fighting from Moroccans! We even have our independence day on 18th November and it's something we take a lot of pride on as we are super patriotic! I saw many fictions pieces, games that always deal various historical events but I really want to introduce my country to others through my work!~☆

Again, thank you very much for answering! I'll keep your ideas in mind if I ever get to actually put this project into motion!♡

User avatar
Fuseblower
Regular
Posts: 142
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2016 6:01 pm
Projects: Tenkeiteki Tokyo
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#4 Post by Fuseblower » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:23 am

Sounds interesting! I wouldn't worry too much about disclaimers. Simply naming it "Historical Fiction" or "Historical Romance" should be disclaimer enough. A historical romance like "Casablanca" didn't come with additional disclaimers.

I don't know when exactly you want the romantic story to take place. The time of the French protectorate spanned over 4 decades so I assume you will just take an important event of that time as backdrop for your story like the Fez Riots, the Rif War, WW2 or the short reign of Ben Arafa during the exile of Mohammed V (I looked it up on Wikipedia :wink: ).

I suppose your characters will be influenced by the historical events since you want it to be a historical romance. In that case it's like Parttimestorier already mentioned : to show different perspectives. Not just because it will be "fair" to both sides but because it's an interesting source of conflict and drama. A character might want the French to stay for economical reasons, another character might join Abd el-Krim, etc.

Good luck with your project. It takes a lot of research, especially the little, everyday details.

User avatar
Virgichuu
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:47 pm
Projects: First Project I'm working on and it's an otome game: Forogotten
Tumblr: virgichuu
Deviantart: Virgichuu
Skype: Spica.art
Location: Morocco
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#5 Post by Virgichuu » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:06 am

Fuseblower wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:23 am
Sounds interesting! I wouldn't worry too much about disclaimers. Simply naming it "Historical Fiction" or "Historical Romance" should be disclaimer enough. A historical romance like "Casablanca" didn't come with additional disclaimers.

I don't know when exactly you want the romantic story to take place. The time of the French protectorate spanned over 4 decades so I assume you will just take an important event of that time as backdrop for your story like the Fez Riots, the Rif War, WW2 or the short reign of Ben Arafa during the exile of Mohammed V (I looked it up on Wikipedia :wink: ).

I suppose your characters will be influenced by the historical events since you want it to be a historical romance. In that case it's like Parttimestorier already mentioned : to show different perspectives. Not just because it will be "fair" to both sides but because it's an interesting source of conflict and drama. A character might want the French to stay for economical reasons, another character might join Abd el-Krim, etc.

Good luck with your project. It takes a lot of research, especially the little, everyday details.
Waaaaah thank you very much for your answer! It's was incredibly helpful and you do have a point! I'll bear your advice and words in mind! Thank you very much for answering it was very helpful!♡ (thank you for your research as well he hehe! ~ Also I know about everyday life things! I'll probably ask my grandma about it! She grew up during that time!)
Thanks again for your time!♡

User avatar
Mammon
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 686
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2015 3:09 pm
Completed: Pervert&Yandere, Stalker&Yandere
Projects: Roses Of The Thorn Prince
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#6 Post by Mammon » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:38 am

A historical event doesn't have to be a minefield with disclaimers to cover yourself from anyone's critism, especially considering it's probably not an event that still has a lot of tension around it. Granted, people who experienced the revolution are alive today, but as far as I know it's not something like the yugoslavian genocide where court trials are still ongoing and where governments are still denying and censoring their involvement. I don't know this for sure because I know little of the FP-period, but it sounds like it falls under the general decolonisation movement that happened after WW2. European countries rarely deny or twist their role in that regard, they even phrase their role in history books as the bad guys most of the time. So if you want to portray the french as the repressive colonists and the moroccans as the liberty fighters, as long as you don't slander or overdo it, it should be fine. Perhaps ask someone french what and how they learned about this in their history classes, but this time period shouldn't be much of a problem to write about.

About the part that few to none know of the French Protectorate, that can be a virtue just as much as it's a vice. It means that you can explain things without telling people things they already know, and leave out parts that you don't want to add or get too deep into so you can keep things simple. You might want to look at how fantasy stories with great worldbuilding do this, they too introduce a world and situation that no one knows. How do they pace and introduce the exposition of the world without making it seem like a history lesson, awkward exposition forcefeeding or a vague and unlogical world? What can and do they show instead of tell? If you assume that the french protectorate is a big blank in the knowledge of your readers, your hands aren't tied by expectations or a certain opinion that's expected of your story.

To summarise my opinion; don't worry about telling your story. Don't slander (which is something you'd actively need to strive for by trying to make the antagonist as evil and monsterous as possible to a point where the French may start thinking you're harbouring personal resentment to them.) and things should be just fine. Tell it like you imagined the world and event from scratch and weave the tale for your audience.
ImageImageImage

Want some CC sprites?

User avatar
Virgichuu
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:47 pm
Projects: First Project I'm working on and it's an otome game: Forogotten
Tumblr: virgichuu
Deviantart: Virgichuu
Skype: Spica.art
Location: Morocco
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#7 Post by Virgichuu » Mon Jun 11, 2018 4:25 pm

Mammon wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:38 am
A historical event doesn't have to be a minefield with disclaimers to cover yourself from anyone's critism, especially considering it's probably not an event that still has a lot of tension around it. Granted, people who experienced the revolution are alive today, but as far as I know it's not something like the yugoslavian genocide where court trials are still ongoing and where governments are still denying and censoring their involvement. I don't know this for sure because I know little of the FP-period, but it sounds like it falls under the general decolonisation movement that happened after WW2. European countries rarely deny or twist their role in that regard, they even phrase their role in history books as the bad guys most of the time. So if you want to portray the french as the repressive colonists and the moroccans as the liberty fighters, as long as you don't slander or overdo it, it should be fine. Perhaps ask someone french what and how they learned about this in their history classes, but this time period shouldn't be much of a problem to write about.

About the part that few to none know of the French Protectorate, that can be a virtue just as much as it's a vice. It means that you can explain things without telling people things they already know, and leave out parts that you don't want to add or get too deep into so you can keep things simple. You might want to look at how fantasy stories with great worldbuilding do this, they too introduce a world and situation that no one knows. How do they pace and introduce the exposition of the world without making it seem like a history lesson, awkward exposition forcefeeding or a vague and unlogical world? What can and do they show instead of tell? If you assume that the french protectorate is a big blank in the knowledge of your readers, your hands aren't tied by expectations or a certain opinion that's expected of your story.

To summarise my opinion; don't worry about telling your story. Don't slander (which is something you'd actively need to strive for by trying to make the antagonist as evil and monsterous as possible to a point where the French may start thinking you're harbouring personal resentment to them.) and things should be just fine. Tell it like you imagined the world and event from scratch and weave the tale for your audience.
Ooooh many thanks for your opinion! I'm so glad people responded to my thread with such useful ideas and advice! I'll keep what you said in mind because it's absolutely true! I think it's now time for me check my textbooks again! Thank you very much!♡

User avatar
trooper6
Lemma-Class Veteran
Posts: 3329
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2011 10:33 pm
Projects: A Close Shave
Location: Medford, MA
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#8 Post by trooper6 » Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:15 am

You can write what you want. You don’t have to be balanced if you don’t want to. You can make propaganda of you want. This is your art and you can do what you want.

There are lots of historical games out there that deal with tense moments of history—let’s set aside all the WW2 games—try out 1979 Revolution: Black Friday, or Valirnt Hearts: The Grear War. People make historical fiction games all the time. You can too!
A Close Shave:
*Last Thing Done (Aug 17): Finished coding emotions and camera for 4/10 main labels.
*Currently Doing: Coding of emotions and camera for the labels--On 5/10
*First Next thing to do: Code in all CG and special animation stuff
*Next Next thing to do: Set up film animation
*Other Thing to Do: Do SFX and Score (maybe think about eye blinks?)
Check out My Clock Cookbook Recipe: http://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums/viewto ... 51&t=21978

User avatar
Virgichuu
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:47 pm
Projects: First Project I'm working on and it's an otome game: Forogotten
Tumblr: virgichuu
Deviantart: Virgichuu
Skype: Spica.art
Location: Morocco
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#9 Post by Virgichuu » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:34 am

trooper6 wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:15 am
You can write what you want. You don’t have to be balanced if you don’t want to. You can make propaganda of you want. This is your art and you can do what you want.

There are lots of historical games out there that deal with tense moments of history—let’s set aside all the WW2 games—try out 1979 Revolution: Black Friday, or Valirnt Hearts: The Grear War. People make historical fiction games all the time. You can too!
You think so? I'll try to work something out with my co-writer and programmer with that! Thanks for your opinion!
Also thank you so very much for the suggestions! I'll try out the games you mentioned!!

User avatar
trooper6
Lemma-Class Veteran
Posts: 3329
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2011 10:33 pm
Projects: A Close Shave
Location: Medford, MA
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#10 Post by trooper6 » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:52 pm

1979 Revolution: Black Friday is highly recommended. It is really amazing. It is about the Iranian revolution. And it is banned in Iran. And some of the Iranians who worked on it had to use pseudonyms...and some had to leave the country. It is very controversial. But it is also great art. And it was nominated for some awards as well.

Make your art, just do it well!
A Close Shave:
*Last Thing Done (Aug 17): Finished coding emotions and camera for 4/10 main labels.
*Currently Doing: Coding of emotions and camera for the labels--On 5/10
*First Next thing to do: Code in all CG and special animation stuff
*Next Next thing to do: Set up film animation
*Other Thing to Do: Do SFX and Score (maybe think about eye blinks?)
Check out My Clock Cookbook Recipe: http://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums/viewto ... 51&t=21978

User avatar
Virgichuu
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:47 pm
Projects: First Project I'm working on and it's an otome game: Forogotten
Tumblr: virgichuu
Deviantart: Virgichuu
Skype: Spica.art
Location: Morocco
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#11 Post by Virgichuu » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:57 pm

trooper6 wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:52 pm
1979 Revolution: Black Friday is highly recommended. It is really amazing. It is about the Iranian revolution. And it is banned in Iran. And some of the Iranians who worked on it had to use pseudonyms...and some had to leave the country. It is very controversial. But it is also great art. And it was nominated for some awards as well.

Make your art, just do it well!
Wow! Thank you very much for the recommendation! I'll try it out!

User avatar
Rastagong
Regular
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2017 3:28 pm
Completed: Upon a Darkening Flood
Projects: Sylvan Disappearance
Tumblr: rastagong-tearoom
itch: rastagong
Contact:

Re: Historical VNS and disclaimers?

#12 Post by Rastagong » Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:50 pm

Ah, I don't have much to add to what everyone said, but I'd absolutely love to read a VN about Moroccan history and colonialism!<3
VNs with historical settings are still kind of rare, but they're really worth it! (French person here, btw!)

I don't have much advice to offer, except maybe don't afraid to take a position on history and to stand by it! Like trooper6 said, it's your VN, so don't be afraid of making choices.

As for the way to tell the story, likewise, feel very free to make it personal (or not), to put the historical context merely as a background, or on the contrary front and centre. There are just so many ways you could go!
I have two examples of historical settings in games/VNs in mind, and they relate to history in very different ways:
  • Because We're Here is a VN which is currently in development. It's set during a fictionalised rendition of WWI on the Western front. Even though the countries involved are fictional, the story is really concerned with exploring WWI from as many point of views as possible: soldiers on the front, people at the back, pacifist militants, fervent nationalist supporters, cowards… It's honestly very impressive in its exhaustiveness. It's a good example of the “multiple perspectives” approach you could decide to take.
  • On the other hand, Detention is a horror game set in Taiwan during the 1960s. You wake up at night at school, and have to find a way out. I still haven't played through it, but from what I understand, the game has strong political and historical undertones: it deals with the authoritarian regime of Taiwan at the time, but this is less overt at first. It's something which looms in the background, before becoming more prominent. This is also a completely valid way to tell a story!
I guess that's not really practical advice, but yeah, either way, I'd be very curious to read this story. ^^
Craving for a slightly historical mystery VN with an unusual presentation? Some amount of psychological or folk horror? A bit of weirdness? I got you covered.


Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users