TransGamer – The world of gaming for someone who is transgender.

TransGamer Documentary

Before watching

Before I watched the documentary, I thought about the title: Trans Gamer.

I am going to confess that I am ignorant when it comes to the LGBTQ community especially when it comes to being transgender. I know what it is in the dictionary sense, but I haven’t learnt what it actually means; so I do apologise if I say anything upsetting or use the wrong pronouns in this review. I will take the time to read over it and be careful.

Transgender: I know this as the main term for someone who has chosen to identify with a different gender to the one they were physically born with, males or female. As of 2021 transgender people are still at the minority.

Gamer: Someone who passionately plays games for a hobby, the gaming community is ever-growing, especially as many people have spent more time at home over the past year. I am not part of this community either, but I do know that it is more accepting when it comes to genders than in everyday life.

Female gamers are more and more respected each day, as people now believe that females can play and understand games just as well as males can. Also the stereotype against male gamers being “nerds” is slowly dying with the help of more “socially confident” YouTubers who game and stream.

But I can’t help but wonder, why is trans-gaming a topic? Surely if the gaming community accepts men and women, there isn’t much to talk about. I still have not watched the documentary yet, as I want to think about the topic more.

I am trying to predict and understand what the documentary might be about, as I have chosen to only know the name of it. Will I be learning about an issue that that trans-gamers go through? What could be the problem? I think about how some gamers use voice chat to team up with strangers? Could it be because some trans gamers are not able to “match the voice” of their new identity, and this causes negativity online? That’s one possibility that I have thought of as to why trans-gaming is a topic.

My second theory was that the documentary will show me how it allows gamers to become a completely new person online, allowing them to rediscover themselves online almost anonymously, experimenting with usernames as new names they may want to use.

I am excited to see what I am going to learn in this short documentary, I am going to press play now.

Watching the documentary

The TransGamer documentary is about the world of gaming through the eyes of Pascal, a non-binary person, to whom gaming provides entertainment and escape, fundamental to their mental health.

Pascal teaches us about how he loves games that allow him to be his own character, in one of his favourite game he plays as a ‘Dragon’. “Dragons don’t have to wear a bow, dress, or even a backwards baseball cap,” Pascal tells us, as his reason for choosing this avatar.

On a similar topic to what I thought about before watching the documentary Pascal talks about why he does not like multiplayer online gaming. he tells us about the negativity that he receives online.

Pascal tries to avoid online gaming with strangers, as he doesn’t want the negativity online, to taint the gaming lifestyle that he has created for himself in order to help him better his mental health.

About halfway through the 10-minute documentary, we see Pascal meeting (virtually) with other transgender gamers online. They are relating to Pascal’s experience and giving him the advice to be confident and to keep putting himself out there with online communities until he finds one that he feels comfortable playing with.

We next meet Leo the director of the documentary, he tells us how he is learning to explore his sexuality, and how creating the documentary has helped him to really think about it more.

Leo tells us how when he was doing the interviews for the documentary, he found is hard to not question his identity, as he already new that he liked to try on skirts and makeup. It was interesting to hear just how much people from the community can influence and teach each-other.

Afterthoughts

I was happy to be able to watch Pascal and Leo play an online game together with their voice chat on, teaching each other about their journeys and where they are now.

It is great that Pascal and Leo were able to create an online gaming group with other trans-gamers. It made me smile to see Pascal comfortably playing an online game with people he didn’t already know.

My takeaway from watching this short documentary would be to make sure that if I play an online game with people online, I make sure to keep an effort to use everyone’s correct pronouns if I need to refer to someone in the game, whether I know if they are trans or not. And also to stick up for them if I am witnessing them being bullied.

I really liked this short documentary, it got me thinking about the people that I might play with in the future and how I can try and help them game more comfortably.

I give it a 5/5

Link to the documentary

Link to their social media

3 Independent short films to watch on Youtube this November!

With media jobs quickly declining, all we can do is make our own content, and because everyone is doing this, is is very hard to get work noticed. Here are 3 independent short films that you wouldn’t otherwise have discovered, you can watch them now on Youtube!

Don’t forget to like and subscribe to the creators!

Urban Legend

Trailer 2

This British Short Film was Directed by Jireh Kyari Instagram and produced by Ratidzai ‘Rika’ Chavarika instagram. The short film is about a young boy who is conflicted with a pursuit in art or football surrounded by other peer pressure. The story follows the question on wether he will choose his validation or others?

Lyidian

This American short film was created by first time Director Jahkwon Lewis Instagram. It is about a student Pianist with stage fright who finds courage through an acquaintance.

Full Short Film

Auditorium 13

Written and directed by Christian Tyler Instagram This is another American short film about a new theatre employee tasked with shutting down the projectors each night begins to experience supernatural occurrences in the notoriously spooky auditorium 13.

Do you create content? Send me the link to have yours featured on my next article! 

Four Short Film Series – Is this series just bait or actually any good?

Four is a short film series on Youtube by the channel Walk with Short Film I’ve noticed that Season 2 is getting a lot of promotion on social media, so I decided to see what the hype was all about, as the latest episode was coming out today.

I am going to watch each episode from series one to current then give my overall thoughts so far.

Season 1

I will be keeping the storyline and spoilers as vague as possible, so you can watch it for yourself.

As I hadn’t seen any of the series I had to start from Season 1 part 1. I tried watching the trailer…twice…I couldn’t get passed the acting and the fact that the sound levels were off. But I had to remind myself that this was an independent production, and that the actual episode would be a lot better.

Storyline

The overall storyline of the first two episodes was cute, it was clear which characters were good or bad and that the four main characters would have a good opportunity for character development.

I like how the four friends had solid friendship, it really helped with the progression of the storyline as the characters all slowly began to react differently to their situation…For-shadowing that they will eventually have a disagreement but at the end of the day have each others backs.

After the third episode the storyline got a bit messy, as I am both typing and watching it got confusing very quickly, but that part is on me. I felt as though there wasn’t much opportunity to get to know the two gang members ‘Smooth‘ and ‘Kid‘. With a short film of this storyline it would have been stronger if these characters were more developed so that way viewers could properly chose who they like better

Considering that the four kids were so loyal to “KI” in the first episode, it seems a bit unrealistic just how fast their loyalties changed because of a situation that they brought onto themselves.

I was however impressed by the fact that you gave an opportunity for the viewers to chose between to alternative endings. After watching both I decided that I preferred “Smooths Ending” as it showed that there was a lesson to be learnt…Stay in your lane and don’t get involved.

Cinematography

As a positive, you could tell that it was produced by people who know how to film, with a larger budget it could have been really professional.

A weakness

Although the establishing shots done with the drone in the very first episode looked good, they didn’t work well which I assume is why I didn’t see that style again.

In terms of the soundtracks during confrontational scenes the editors should use it as an opportunity to edit along side of it; such as cutting the shots to the main beats from time. Although the style of music complemented what was going on, it didn’t feel part of the scene.

Acting

There was a big improvement for most of the characters as the series progressed, however the side characters always seemed to get into their characters the most, such as Keisha and Smooth.

Although this was meant to be a serious short film series I found it funny throughout the whole series, especially the gun shot reactions….Seriously what even were those!

Gun Reaction – Episode 1

A small weakness

However the Sharianie’s character (Sorry girl) did not improve. No hate but it just goes to show that these days, looks override talent both on stage and behind the camera. I hope as the media industry progresses production companies try harder to find actresses that are both pretty and talented.

Season 1 Episode 3

Sorry but if an unstable person just shot someone out of panic, you would NOT take the gun from them like that…Lets move on

Script

The script team did a good job to get through the bad acting…Okay I’ll stop getting onto the acting now. To continue the script was actually well made, the characters seemed honest and real. The dialogue told the story well keeping the characters true to themselves, I particularly likes how the characters discussed there plans, although common slang was used, you could authenticate each character by their own way of communicating,

Rating

So far I give the series a 5/10. The score could be higher through better use of sound and acting.


Season 2

Storyline

As the episode began I was glad to see that the characters had drifted apart, as it was only realistic giving their age and what had happened. It was sad to see that Devonte was falling into the gang life, but I really like how it is not yet clear which season ending that Walk With have chosen to go with, this artistic choice has really worked very well for Devonte’s character development. We know that Devonte has made a bad decision, but we just can’t tell what; leaving us viewers wanting to know more.

OOOP back with those lovely establishing shot…

It was a good story progression that Sharianie has found a female friend, as I feel that it was a lacking point for her character. Just like season one the loyalties or even fake loyalties between the friends strong.

In this episode we really explore in Shariane’s character and look at how she finds herself falling back the lifestyle she left for uni to avoid. We are only one episode in but I have faith that this series can really progress into something strong.

Acting and Script

The use of extras did a lot for this show, especially with Shariane’s situation it helped viewers to really empathise with her. The reactions to her viral video seemed true and realistic of the cultural around viral videos.

Season 2 Episode 1

Rating

This episode alone is an improvement, I now give the series a 7/10 due to character development and the use of speaking extras.

To Answer the Question

Is the series getting views because it is bait or is it actually really good?

A lot of the views is definitely due to the reputation of the crew and cast, however I can tell that it has remained a popular series to watch because it was overall well made. Although the series has it’s noticeable weaknesses, but it is an independent production that has made great use of it’s budget and the locations that the production team had access to.

In conclusion, I am going to go with both answers, yes it has views because of it’s reputation. But it has regular viewers because of the professionally executed content.

Well done Walk with Team…You just may well here from me again.