Bastion is a fantasy RPG that takes place in a world that’s been fractured by a mysterious “cataclysm.”
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Story & Themes
While this part of the game is fairly typical, there are two other elements that make for slightly atypical gameplay. The first is the Proving Grounds, where the kid can practice using his weapons and shield. These trials are not easy—they take mechanical skill and strategy to complete at the higher levels. The second element is the ability to activate Gods. The kid discovers lost idols in his journey, and these can be used to make the gameplay harder in various ways—for instance, adding hit points to the monsters, or making it impossible for the kid to be revived after falling from a ledge. One teacher used this mechanic as a way to teach students intersectionality in oppression.
[Spoilers ahead] The kid eventually discovers a couple of other survivors, both of whom are part of a group of nomads who were oppressed by the kid’s people. It comes to light that the Calamity was caused by these nomads in order to prevent their genocide. One of the kid’s new friends betrays those living in the Bastion in order to stop its reconstruction. In the end, the kid is given several options. He can kill or spare the friend who betrayed him, and he can start over (sort of going back in time before the Calamity occurred), or he can choose to carry on as before with his new-found friends, in the hope that he can create a new and better world.
Bastion’s themes include the gray area between right and wrong and the responsibility of individuals who are part of a privileged group for the actions of that group (even if they may not agree with those actions or have personally contributed to them).
- What sort of responsibility do you have for the actions of people in your in-group? (People you identify with, or a group you identify as a part of?) If you don’t agree with your group’s actions, do you still have responsibility toward the people those actions may have affected?
- Do you think it’s fair for the kid to feel guilty for his people’s attempted genocide? Even if he didn’t have any hand in it?
- If you chose to spare the friend who betrayed you, why? If you chose to kill him, why did you make that choice?
- Can you find any similarities between Bastion’s history and real-life history?
Interests / Subjects:
Art (Painting, Drawing, etc.),
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REGION OF ORIGIN:
Cannot be played online