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Steve Johnson
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Having lived in Nigeria from 1990 -1995, I have first hand experience of ‘magic’ in the Modern World. Some examples below:

Charms. Armed robbers etc would go to the local ‘witch doctor’ and buy charms that protected them from any bullets harming them. They really believed that they worked. The local populace believed this too and so, local law enforcement officers etc that saw said charms, might be discouraged from shooting at them, feeling that their bullets would be of no use. One infamous armed robber survived many, many attacks and everyone believed that it was the charm protecting him.

Divine Intervention. Many educated Christians with experience of living in the ‘West’ still go to local ‘witch doctors’ to ask for help in their careers, love lives etc. Remember that large parts of Africa have been Christian for less than 100 years, so old customs still hold sway. In some rural areas their is still a strong animist religions practised.

Curses. People as still utterly fearful of these. One day some workers from another factory in my group of companies borrowed my truck without my permission. Seeing them leaving the factory I stopped them. I then said that I had cursed the truck by putting kaolin in the ground and sacrificing the chicken. The look of terror on their faces was something to behold. They begged me to remove the curse and when I told them I was joking, their sense of relief was palpable.

Spirit Children. The Yoruba belief that Spirits walk amongst them, even today. These Spirits take the bodies of children who are taken across to the ‘other world’ and may, or may not, come back, depending upon the will of the spirit.

So just a few examples of ‘magic’ that could be applied to games. Hope these are of use/interest?