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Who else is tired of angsty transhumans?

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Geckopirateship

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I know this sounds weird coming from a fan of World of Darkness, but I'm really tired of settings and stories that feel that becoming some sort of enhanced human- a vampire, a cyborg, anything immortal, etc, is somehow a terrible burden. I know there are people who feel that way, but I think it's overdone. It's why I tend to gravitate towards factions and characters that go against that trend- I LOVE the Ordo Dracul, for example, because they decided that if being a vampire sucked, they should make it suck less instead of angsting about it. It's why I could never get into Promethean- Frankenstein's monster is my favorite monster, but I hate the whole "being a Promethean is inherently wrong and you'll only be happy if you become mortal" part.

This is why I like Franky from One Piece so much- he's totally fine with being a cyborg (I'm actually making a Self-Forged character based on him). And in any game, my impulse is to pick the cyborg or enhanced character type and play it as somehow who genuinely enjoys being one.

So, any thoughts on this?
 

bbcisdabomb

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I really enjoy when the transhumans are fine with who they are and resent people trying to change them. I read a fanfic years ago that was basically Pinnochio but went like this:
"Pinnochio, do a truely selfless act and you'll be a real boy!"
"What the FUCK do you mean by that? I'm a fully sentient puppet, what's wrong with that?"
 

Escalation Lad

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Angsty stuff is fine for what it is, but it was a particularly 90s/early 2000s kind of thing. I'm into more reconsuctrivist gaming now.
 

Ghost_msl

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I kinda like Rifts for that - alot of the enhanced classes LIKE being enhanced, Juicers, Crazies and 'Borgs mostly.

One bit of fluff has a Juicer wondering if he should jump off a building just to get rid of that suspision that he is human.
 

Snoof

Time-Travelling Layabout
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I know this sounds weird coming from a fan of World of Darkness, but I'm really tired of settings and stories that feel that becoming some sort of enhanced human- a vampire, a cyborg, anything immortal, etc, is somehow a terrible burden. I know there are people who feel that way, but I think it's overdone. It's why I tend to gravitate towards factions and characters that go against that trend- I LOVE the Ordo Dracul, for example, because they decided that if being a vampire sucked, they should make it suck less instead of angsting about it. It's why I could never get into Promethean- Frankenstein's monster is my favorite monster, but I hate the whole "being a Promethean is inherently wrong and you'll only be happy if you become mortal" part.
Consent is a big part.

Becoming a Promethean isn't something you choose [1]. It's something that's done to you. Same deal with becoming a vampire, or a changeling, or even a reluctant cyborg like Adam Jensen. There's a lot of fertile ground there for exploring pain and neglect and alienation and exploitation and all kinds of interesting, cathartic drama, and that appeals to some people. Where it gets tedious is when people get bogged down in the angst, rather than attempting to reach some kind of resolution, whether it's acceptance, transcendance, escape or self-destruction.

On the other hand, as you said, it's perfectly possible to have an interesting transhuman character who embraces what they've become right from the start - you see this a lot in cyberpunk and explicitly transhuman games like Shadowrun, Eclipse Phase and Transhuman Space - but usually this comes from characters who chose the transformation, rather than having it forced on them.

[1] Even if the person whose corpse you were made from volunteered, presumably because they were obsessed, or stupid, or tragically misinformed as to the outcome, you had no say in the matter. You were made without anyone asking, and now you're trapped in a world full of people who hate you, not for what you've done, but for who you are. There's a whole lot of symbolism you can read into that.
 

Silvercat Moonpaw

Quadruped Transhuman
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I'm tired of most angst so this is just part of a larger problem in my eyes, but I am indeed very tired of any angst that's about becoming "human". Humans are overrated: so long as you're not a jerk and/or a murdering psychopath I don't really see what's wrong with being not.
 

Geckopirateship

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Let's face it, a lot of this probably comes from being trans, which has given me a deep hatred for appeal to nature arguments in general and a belief in morphological freedom. You could do a pretty good analysis of this, that the "angsty transhuman" trope is used to reinforce the status quo and warn people against trying the change themselves (of course, it's partially a Stockholm Syndrome effect- for most of history major physical changes haven't really been possible).

If you try to read Promethean from an SJ standpoint it's just...ugh. "You'll only be happy if you assimilate and it's not people's fault that they hate you."
 

JRoss

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I don't think transhumans are angsty. I think they have superior attitudes, and act as if transhuman fiction is the only acceptable form of science fiction. They tend to be dismissive of anyone else as close-minded, fearful or backward. That and they seem to think that stuff like the Culture novels is actually going to happen. I don't mind transhuman fiction, but I don't like transhumanists. Sort of how I like steampunk but don't like a lot of other fans.
 

Geckopirateship

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I'm not talking about transhumanists, I'm using "transhuman" as a blanket term for enhanced human characters. Cyborgs, vampires, liches, and so on.
 

The Scribbler

A Flash of Hope
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I don't mind people in a transhuman state being angsty as an individual, I can totally believe an individual with a certain personality or outlook could find even an almost entirely beneficial situation to be purgatory (the main character on New Amsterdam can't die and is getting tired of that for reasons the show goes into a bit, especially as the wording for what'll end his state puts a sour note on pretty much every romantic relationship he has), but agree that having it be a sort of default situation does get a bit old as a creative choice.

However, there are a number of scenarios where being a certain flavor of transhuman has real, glaring drawbacks that when played straight would drive almost anyone to be melancholy and I'm more forgiving in that situation (because in some of those cases someone who fully embraced their state would be a monster, which I'm prone to see as a worse outcome).
 
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