Stuck in a Dark Place is a serious game about the serious issue of consent. This important game explores the meaning of consent and some of the many ways we are affected when consent is ignored.
Stuck in a Dark Place covers many different aspects of consent throughout its eight chapters of gameplay, offering many different scenarios about consent in one storyline. Scenarios in the game address unwanted touching ("groping"), exhibitionism, intoxication, marital rape, underage or statutory rape, workplace sexual harassment, and distribution of nonconsensual sexually explicit imagery ("revenge porn").
Stuck in a Dark Place includes a Lesson Mode for use in classrooms or other educational settings. This feature allows game players to directly select any of the eight chapters in order to focus on that specific topic for classroom discussion. It is suggested that the entire game be played before focusing on individual topics.
Please note that this game includes several scenarios of non-consensual sexual activity including assaults. You have the option to use the CONTENT WARNING setting in the game to bypass some of the more troubling content.
GAMING AGAINST VIOLENCE
This serious game is from the Gaming Against Violence program produced by Jennifer Ann's Group, a non profit charity, and is one of the serious games in their Consent Game Series.
JENNIFER ANN'S GROUP, A NONPROFIT CHARITY
Since 2008 Jennifer Ann's Group has been producing persuasive games to help students, educators, and parents gain better understanding about serious issues affecting adolescents. Video games are an ideal approach to engaging, educating, and empowering young people and Gaming Against Violence is an evidence-based program shown to change unhealthy attitudes and beliefs.
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Ratings and Reviews
It’s a cringy game that’s going too hard with the message. She’s a consent criminal who more or less got victimized in every consenst crime there is. I find this very hard to believe. Also somehow she creates a great movement from the prison and is famous and a great person by the time she is released?
The ending is not okay. You minimized her taking advantage and likely in reality grooming that young person. Where is her nightmares of perpetuating that violence? And then she becomes famous? It only signs off on the whole, "i was hurt thats why i hurt." Disgusting as someone who experienced almost all of those types of assaults and the last one. Please edit the ending w more responsibility/work to repair harm done to the person she harmed. Or yknow, if ur a survivor reading this, j know this isnt fully a game for us. Yuck.
Developer Response ,
We are sorry for the past harms done to you -- and similarly sorry for all victims of abuse. It makes us sad and we do reflect upon the work we're doing and the impact it sometimes has.
These are not easy topics to discuss, let alone create fictional stories about and then embed in a video game. But we are not letting the difficulty of that task prevent us from doing what we are striving to do: prevent future violence.
That does not mean that we don't care about those who have been victimized; they are always front of mind as we do this work, but our primary goal is to prevent victims in the future. We don't run a shelter, we work to prevent the need for shelters.
Stuck in a Dark Place is not a game for everybody and we have tried to make that as clear as possible without revealing too much of the game's storyline. We are very victim-focused and strive to be as trauma-informed as possible.
This particular game was evaluated and reviewed by several psychologists, by former school counselors, and by others who work to prevent intimate partner violence.
The game went through several rounds of changes based on feedback from trained trauma professionals. We have done what we thought we could to engage young people about this critically important information while balancing that against the risk of re-opening wounds that we recognize might not ever fully heal.
We are aware that developing a fictional story involving sexual assault necessarily runs the risk of upsetting some people who engage with that story. And so in addition to the content warnings in the marketing information and the game itself we also offer the in-game option of skipping some of the more troubling content. We have strived to make this game as helpful as possible for those who need to learn these important lessons while also understanding the real risk of upsetting others.
Unfortunately it is difficult to respond in a meaningful way to your comments. We cannot separate your trauma from your comments but have no other way of responding to "Alexandria17689" other than in this small space devoid of any humanity or necessary context.
That said, as anybody who has played this game knows, the protagonist in this game IS punished. That is THE very framework within which 100% of this game operates. The entire game takes place in a prison to which they've been sentenced for the absolutely improper wrongs they've done.
It is untrue to say that the story minimizes the actions of the protagonist. What is true however is that it is not until later in the game that the player realizes the reason that the protagonist is in prison. The harms that do go unpunished though are many of those that actually happen to the protagonist. And they are wrong. As are the protagonist's actions. The primary difference is that only one of those wrongs results in prison.
If you want to have a substantive conversation about this we will be happy to do so -- not to convince you that you are wrong & we are right but instead to have an opportunity for you to provide us greater context so that we could make changes as needed. We know that, like everything else, this game could be improved.
Right now though we are unable to make adjustments to the game or even respond in a meaningful way to you because your comments don't accurately reflect what occurs in the game.
You are absolutely right however about this:
If you are a survivor reading this, this might not be the game for you, just not necessarily for the reasons listed by Alexandria17689 but because this game addresses real-world situations that are traumatizing, especially for those who have experienced any of these non-consensual abuses.
Generally, the more troubling content in the game is not the content addressed here in this review however.
We believe that this is the first comment we have ever received that claims the game minimizes the very real trauma portrayed. Instead, when somebody is unhappy with the game we get complaints that the game is "cringy" or "too much like an after school special" or "always blames men" or "games shouldn't cover serious issues" or some other bad-faith complaint.
Small wonder that schools and parents are often not bothered with ever teaching consent.
We are sorry for what has happened to you.
We are sorry that some of the messages in this game felt harmful or otherwise wrong.
But we are not sorry that we are doing something to prevent future victims. We do believe it is far better to light the candle than to curse the darkness.
If you have ideas on how we can improve we would gladly listen to, and learn from them.
This is an awesome game and spreads a powerful message. It was fun to play with the little puzzles in it and I think it was very motivational and spreads the message to report it if your not comfortable about it.
Developer Response ,
Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts about this impactful game. We hope that you found it useful and will share it with your peers. We want very much for this important information about consent to become commonly known. Thanks again.
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- THE JENNIFER ANN CRECENTE MEMORIAL GROUP, INC.
- 282.8 MB
- Requires iOS 8.0 or later.
- Requires iPadOS 8.0 or later.
- iPod touch
- Requires iOS 8.0 or later.
- Age Rating
- 12+ Infrequent/Mild Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or References Infrequent/Mild Sexual Content and Nudity Infrequent/Mild Realistic Violence Infrequent/Mild Mature/Suggestive Themes
- © 2018 Jennifer Ann's Group
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.