Of Games and Civilizations

This is an interesting digression on the multiple aspects of what can be described as “Western civilization” and how game developers have attempted to account for some of its various aspects:

Civilization is not so much an architectural style but a thought process of metaphysics. And these different metaphysics create different cultures which create different civilizations.

From the other side of the world, the West might as well just be ‘Western Civilization’ with all histories plopped together as ‘History of the West’. Yet, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Without understanding the multiple Western Civilizations, how can one learn to utilize it? Or even to understand it?

One Western Civilization is a Christianized Paganism. The Second Western Civilization is the Protestation of the former. While you may think these are mere religious differences gone today, you would be completely wrong. There are two Western Civilizations that exist today.

The Christianized Paganism is easier to find its roots. You have the Greeks and Roman Empire metaphysics converted (e.g. instead of an Emperor, you have a Pope). This Western Civilization can mostly be found in non-English speaking countries or in some isolated conclaves of English speaking countries.

As far as the Second Western Civilization, it is better to see it as ‘Anglo-Saxon’ especially with its English language. The Paganism has been rooted out and obliterated in this civilization. It is the civilization of individualism, of hypocrisy, of the Enlightenment thinkers, but also of constant Revolutions. The modern ‘Woke’ culture is a byproduct of the Calvinistic Second Western Civilization metaphysical reality asserting itself. While Christianized Paganism stresses the experience of life, the Western Protestant Civilization stresses the rules of life. Aesthetically, Christianized Paganism bathes itself in the glamour of the ancient arts. Western Protestant Civilization lives in a stark utilitarian mindset and removes all such ancient glamour.

The history of the development of the Ultima games is very nearly as interesting as playing them, and to this day, Akalabeth remains one of my all-time favorite computer games.