College of Computing and Digital Media Dissertations

Date of Award

Spring 3-12-2024

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)


School of Design

First Advisor

Lien Tran, MFA

Second Advisor

Jess King, MA

Third Advisor

Michael DeAnda, PhD


Athalea: Fear and Hate is a single-player 2D role-playing video game (RPG) for PC using pixel art and a minimalistic aesthetic. Through conversations, environmental storytelling, and the main character’s own thoughts, the game explores, through a critical lens, fascist rhetoric and the way that fascists use power in order to help the player to be better equipped to properly understand how fascism operates. Different from traditional portrayals in media that tend to use an easily identifiable set of symbols and historical references, Athalea: Fear and Hate exposes fascism in a different context with the goal of making the core of the ideology easier to spot even with the absence of its usual signifiers. In Athalea: Fear and Hate, you play as Apolonia, a veteran from the war that drove her country into economic hardship and political turmoil. Through her eyes, the player will witness the desperation that drives people either to help each other in order to endure the crisis, or exploit divisions and fear with the goal of gaining power and eliminating political enemies. Can Apolonia and her friends find a way to keep their community together to resist the rising authoritarianism and bigotry in their beloved neighborhood?

Included in

Game Design Commons



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