28 The Girl Cryseïs

Peeper Hersey-Powers

Hi everyone! My project goal was way too ambitious given my energy levels and current state during, well, Everything Going On™, but I wanted to make a Bitsy game focused on Cryseïs, the daughter of the priest of Apollo, Chryses, who was taken by Agamemnon. Instead of making the game right now, I decided the next best thing would be to just discuss my plans for it instead.

The Iliad begins with how Apollo is angry because Chryses has been dishonored by Agamemnon, who rejected Chryses’ ransom for his daughter. I hoped to draw more attention to her brief portrayal and treatment as a prize and bargaining chip, as the last time I read the Iliad in a class we didn’t really discuss her at all, but in my reread/relisten, her story stuck with me throughout the rest of the book.

I wanted to make a game palette based off of red and black figure vase styles. I hoped to make the background black, the tiles a darker orange, and I wanted to make sprites and important items a bright white, as girls and women would often be painted white to distinguish them from men.


Bitsy rendition of Cryseïs







Lekythos (depicting Paris and Helen)        

420-400 BC                



I had hoped to combine Alexander’s translation with writing of my own, sort of like a call-and-response.


“Let me not find you, old man, near our hollow ships,

either loitering now or coming again later,

lest the god’s staff and wreath not protect you.

The girl I will not release; sooner will old age come upon her

in our house, in Argos, far from her homeland,

pacing back and forth by the loom and sharing my bed.” (Alexander, I.26-32)

(in an ideal world there would be images of a house, and a loom corresponding to those last lines also, but doing things takes so much time and energy unfortunately)

Then, I wanted to switch from the image of the ship to a room in which the player walks around as Cryseïs, but I had a lot of trouble designing the layout (and also making it not look like it was Halloween themed rip), but the game itself would begin in a room where she remains trapped. There would be items/sprites for the player to interact with in sequence, giving the lines of her dialogue.

I wanted to focus on her being homesick, and also emphasize how text calls her a girl, specifically—she is a young girl who was forcefully taken from her home to be Agamemnon’s possession. This proved to be another challenge, because, emotionally, it was difficult to try and write, and I haven’t been able to do it.

In other scenes, I wanted to focus on her escort home, the moment where she disembarks from the ship, and her reuniting with her father.

Cryseïs disembarking from the ship (animated and static versions):

I’m sorry this is a little sparse! I am hoping to complete this game at some point or another, even if it is not right now. I hope to post updates as I go.



Gender & Sexuality in Ancient Greece Copyright © by Jody Valentine. All Rights Reserved.

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