That Dragon, Cancer developer Ryan Green delivered an astounding acceptance speech upon winning tonight's The Game Award for the category Games for Impact.
That Dragon, Cancer tells the autobiographical story of the Greens raising a young child stricken with cancer. Ryan, his family, and colleagues sought to tell the story of the ill Joel during the early signs of his illness, but the youthful Green tragically passed away at five.
Green's tearful monologue began by thanking his family, coworkers, and the industry at large for making this possible. He then acknowledged that games seldom portray our less glamourous aspects, and that he was overcome with gratitude that so many were willing to accept him and his family during their grieving process.
We've included a transcription of Ryan Green's complete speech below:
"That Dragon, Cancer exists because my wife, Amy, my children: Caleb, Isaac, Elijah, and Zoe. My business partner Josh. Our team: John, Brock, Ryan, Mike, and Chris. Our friends who are at Ouya: Kelly, Julie, Bob and Jared. Our over 3000 Kickstarter backers. Indie Fund and this entire industry [that] believed this should exist.
"Often in video games we get to choose how we're seen. Our avatars, and our tweets, and the work that we do are all meant to portray the story that that we want to tell the world about why our lives matter. But sometimes a story is written onto us, or it's told because of us, or in spite of us, and it reveals our weaknesses, our failures, our hopes, and our fears.
"You let us tell the story of my son Joel. And in the end, it was not the story that we wanted to tell. But you chose to love us through our grief, by being willing to stop, and to listen, and to not turn away. To let my son Joel's life change you because you chose to see him, and to experience how we loved him."
"And I have hope that when we are all willing to see each other, not for just who we want to be, but who we are, and who we're meant to be - this act of love, and this act of grace, can change the world."