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Trans Experience Indie Games

'One Night, Hot Springs' Showcases Transgender Life in Japan

— October 16, 2018 — Tech
Video games can serve as a powerful tool for experience and 'One Night, Hot Springs' uses this ability to showcase what it's like to be transgendered in Japan. Serving as a visual novel/indie game, One Night, Hot Springs puts players in the shoes of Haru, a 19-year-old transgender woman in Japan. The conflict arises when Haru must decide what she will do when on a visit to a hot springs resort, which traditionally separates patrons by binary genders.

Throughout the game, players will need to make choices on Haru's behalf. These choices tend to fall into two categories: Haru being anxious or Haru being honest. Either choice will lead to different outcomes, with several choices affecting the end of the story. While the game does not fully showcase what it means to be transgender, it does offer an empathetic insight into the struggles trans people face in Japan.
Trend Themes
1. Transgender Representation in Video Games - Creating video games that showcase the transgender experience can provide a platform for empathy and understanding.
2. Interactive Visual Novels - The combination of storytelling and interactivity in visual novels opens up opportunities for immersive experiences and unique narratives.
3. Exploring Gender Identity in Games - Games that explore themes of gender identity can contribute to greater inclusivity and representation in the gaming industry.
Industry Implications
1. Video Game Development - There is a growing demand for inclusive and diverse video games that accurately depict the experiences of marginalized communities.
2. Indie Game Publishing - Independent game publishers can take the lead in supporting and promoting games that tackle important social issues.
3. LGBTQ+ Media and Entertainment - The LGBTQ+ media and entertainment industry can embrace and amplify games that provide a platform for transgender narratives and experiences.
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