A comment on a video about the game Disco Elysium:
I have a weird experience playing this game, that’s because I can’t actually play it.
I am poor, very poor by American standards, I was not born poor, however, and have had access to an excellent education - I am sort of an anomaly. I couldn’t afford this game, I earn minimum wage, but it had been so long since I bought something from myself, so I went ahead and bought it, 56 reais, I am Brazilian, by the way, from São Paulo.
The problem is, my computer is slightly more than a decade old, a laptop, of all things. I installed it, and it ran, but just the beginning section, the game would crash and chug horribly if I left the Whirling Rags.
I tried everything, but in the end I was left playing just that small sequence, over and over again, in the hopes that by some miraculous mean my hardware could last me just a couple of steps longer into the game. A new conversation, a new skill check, and since it chugged a lot I was left with my own thoughts.
And everything kind of reminded me of home, yes, the game is set in what is essentially a frozen tundra, and I live in a sweltering tropical mega city, but still, maybe it was just those small conversations I kept having over and over with the same characters that gave off this feeling of familiarity, but their weary faces in a worn down bar and hotel, that unmistakable hopelessness, it really stinks of home.
We are often stereotyped as a happy people, but our happiness is just we laughing off the pain, most of the time. Life is harsh around here, inequality and strife to the point of caricature, and our fascist in power doesn’t exactly lighten the mood.
There is this feeling of empty nostalgia, not for anything in particular, because the past isn’t really worthy of it, but maybe for the times when things did not feel so apocalyptic.
Two years ago now, I think, the sky blackened with ash, night fell at four o’clock in the afternoon, it was ash from the intentional burning of the Amazon, here, in São Paulo, as far from the Amazon as NYC to Denver.
That day our collective heart broke, and we’ve been sort of undead ever since, settling in this kind of resigned routine.
This reminds me so much of this game, or this game reminds me of all this stuff.
Sorry for the rant, it’s been a hard day, your videos are lovely. Thank you.