Rust - Representing Race in Games - Extra Credits -

Rust – Representing Race in Games – Extra Credits

Extra Credits
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Rust assigns players a skin color on character creation, then ties it to their Steam account so they can never change it. This game design decision creates diversity in the player base and has forced many players to play as characters of an ethnicity different from their own. Since the game does not censor players’ language, many of these players are hearing themselves called racial insults for the first time. While uncomfortable, this experience also pushes players who might normally be oblivious to those issues (or even participate in them) to consider things from a different perspective.
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♪ Intro Music: “Penguin Cap” by CarboHydroM

♪ Outro Music: “What We Left Behind” by Aviators


  1. Maybe make it so that YOUR POV is your choses skin colour, but everybody else sees a pre-rolled look

  2. In the sims I moslty played with white characters until I just decided one day. You know what? Let's make a black character. And I still love that decision. I could play with different colors and saw the use of different clothes.

  3. Its very sad that games has mostly white chracters and in social games people make their avatar white even they aren't white just because they think being not white is bad this is why racism sucks

  4. I didn't like it cause of that mechanic and the toxicity. We should be able to play as we want but instead being forced to play as someone who doesn't look like you is a drawback to me. I just wanted my character that represented me and that i could play without paying attention to but instead i see myself as someone else. Which makes me more uncomfortable than that chair. I want to be me ya know? Besides no matter how many worlds i entered my character was the same and there is no option for changing it. Which sucked. And the community was obnoxious and retarded to me.

  5. It's weird to think almost 2,000 hours of gameplay ago, this mechanic is what got me to start playing that game. It's a mechanic I take entirely for granted at this point, yet it's still wildly novel.

  6. idk why would anyone feel uncomfortable just by playing a dude that is not the same race as the player

  7. I would like to see a game emulate the arbitrary nature of socioeconomic status and the power that any one group has politically. There are some inherent challenges in making a game about it, but I think it's worthwhile. I'd like to see how it effects people in-game, and how it would match up or be different to real life. I'm thinking something on the lines of a political simulacra that depends entirely on the players, and how they leverage power. Whether in numbers in civil disobedience, or with rich players supporting or attempting to stop these movements through bribes and private militaries. The more I think of it; the more it seems too broad. I still like the idea of it though.

  8. Huh… Interesting. I bet if they did add a female model [assuming they haven't already, seeing as how this video is 5 years old], it would generate thought not only about race, but also gender.

  9. And this game is coming from Garry’s Mod developers

  10. You spend a portion of the video talking about how it's an injustice that many people don't get to be represented in games due to arbitrary universal defaults for identity in the gaming industry… yet would this not contradict rust's decision as what they're doing prevents the diversity from being utilized by those initially having asked for it given they don't actually have the choice to play as them? In the short term it's clear where the value is in rust's decsion making, but in the long term it's also clear that re-introducing choice to actually utilize the diversity is important

  11. One argument we shouldn't ignore is to let the market decide. Ultimately, gameing studios are at the weird intersection between being aesthetic masters and economic powehouses that drive technological innovation. If they make someone else happy and others want to buy it, who am I to intercede? If they want to appeal to what they perceive as their target demographic in a bid to maximize profits? I understand. If innovative companies find the investment of customizable avatars for generalized player immersion is profitable, morally and monetarily, Im sure others will follow suit, and I am happy more can find enjoyment in what the studios create.

  12. The great thing is that the game has no racial narrative, it is not making a statement about races. It lets the toxic playerbase do that. If they are racist you will see racism.

  13. Why is female nudity more regulated than male nudity?

  14. Hey could someone do another episode on this, i think you guys are right and that you could reveiew how adding a female character model afected the game. (Apolgies for the grammar wasent my best subject)

  15. …what? Rust player's aren't getting called the N word cause they're black in-game, they're getting called that because the community is toxic. Why are you trying to twist the toxicity of the community into some stupid fucking lesson directed towards white people?

    The lack of customization options was an "interesting" design choice (in that it was strange), but it wasn't a good one. There's a reason that games with multiple race options make them… well… options.

    You can't praise Rust for removing player choice in one moment and then lobby for player choice via character diversity in the next…

    I shouldn't even be annoyed at this point. I knew the moment I saw this title that Extra Credits was gonna say some stupid assed quasi-progressive shit about Rust's terrible decision to remove the player's choice of character customization. Extra Credits ALWAYS does this…

  16. its neat having pre determined characters, and it really helps you identify different people (enemies especially) I just wish the characters looked better. all of them are ugly as fuck

  17. Its like what south park did in their game

  18. Play Kenshi, where certain factions are overtly racist and sexist to you depending on your race choice, but definitely still a different matter from Rust since its the "normal" humans are one race and are being racist to the others.

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