When I was a kid I played some real time strategy games with my brothers. Starcraft and Age of Empire II were the main ones that I loved, though I also played the original Warcraft Orcs and Humans as well. I’ve been playing Starcraft II lately, but that’s now what this post is about.
This post concerns Age of Empires II.
For those of you not familiar with the game, Age of Empires II is a historically-based game where you play as different civilizations such as Mongols or Saracens, Mayans or Turks, Teutons or Koreans, and its based in the middle ages time period as far technology level.
In the game there are number of campaigns where one historical general or leader is followed. In this case, the title of my post refers to the name of a mission in the Mongol “Genghis Khan” campaign, wherein the player, as Genghis Khan is trying to destroy a hated rival.
Life of Revenge. There. After that lengthy explanation of the shared title, I’d like to add that this is apparently consistent with some accounts of Genghis Khan’s way of living and there’s evidence he believed it was preferable to the alternative of clemency.
As I’m sure most of you are aware, the mongols under the Great Khan got a lot of revenge, and perpetrated many horrific acts.
As far as I’m concerned revenge is pointless for the individual and most likely for that nation as well, at least in the modern world. But that’s getting into politics I don’t feel like discussing at the moment.
The difficulties of not seeking payback on the personal level are mainly mental. Part of my personal psyche, at least, is preoccupied with punishment, though that part used to be far larger and more powerful than it is now.
Why am I discussing revenge? I don’t know really. Perhaps I really am thinking about the book I am near wrapping up.
Within these six chapters a major antagonist will be looking for revenge.
Can forgiveness be the outcome instead?
How possible is it for people to truly forgive each other for great pain?
I admit, I don’t have answers. I will keep looking.