In response to "Praise Diversity, Address Inequality" from The Escapist Forums:

The answer to a lot of your questions can be found pretty easily in your own article (both this one and the older Wall Street Journal one you linked).

Why aren't there more ethnic characters in videogames? Because ...

"[...] Ms. Flanagan says that to deal with violent images, particularly ones that involve people of color, the game should be nuanced and confront issues of race head on."

"He says the choice of race can be difficult and they wanted to avoid stereotypes."

"What about the dread-locked Mojya Corps of LocoRoco or the similar sambo-like characters in Patapon 2? What about maniacal, trash-talking Cole Train in Gears of War? I know plenty of black dudes just like Cole, but when he's the only one, it distorts who black folk actually are. All of these examples could be part of a strong case that racist imagery continues to pervade videogames just as it does all other forms of media."

The long and short of it is this: feature white characters, and tell the story you want to tell. Feature non-white characters, and tell stories about tolerance and racial issues.

"That comes down to a simple question for developers - why does this character look like he or she does? They should have an answer."

So ... How do you answer this for non-white characters without getting accused of stereotyping? Why IS that particular character the ethnicity they are? What do you think the reason is for Alyx Vance being Black/Asian? For Faith being Asian?

"I know it's a fantasy world, but why aren't there any non-white Little Sisters in BioShock?"

The Little Sisters all share a model. They can ALL be white, or they can ALL be black, or they can ALL be Asian, etc. Which do you think they should be, and why?

- AceCalhoon

It's interesting to see how many of the posters are being, let's be honest, a tad condescending. Basically saying "What is teh big deal? Why should race matter?" etc., etc.

Truth of the matter is that race, or ethnicity, does matter. I don't whine about it precisely because of light handed responses this article seems to be getting, but even you guys do have a point.

There was an article, I believe it was in Destructoid, that pointed towards the overabundance of white protagonists with short brown hair and stubble. Just think about that.

It's quite simple yet that one single thing points towards a wide cultural divide in our society.

There is an expectation of achievment for the majority of the population, and then there's another for the minority. Unless there is a concise, directed cultural effort from both, the minorities will be swept aside. But I don't think it is so much as the majority trying to be insensitive more than the simple fact that its output swamps all available channels and the minority is still struggling with other things to put more of a concerted, directed effort.

Also, it can always be summarized as the following: If people of color want to be equally represented then, at the very same time they are creating social conscience, they should start making the games themselves.

But, who is making the games? Nerds, geeks, techies, or in short, very educated people.

What is the nerd, geek, techie stereotype?

Where are the mexicans, inidigenous, black guys, mixed, etc. Don't believe me? Watch a sitcom named Big Bang Theory that represents and pokes fun at its subject matter. But, hey, at least they've got an indian guy, right?

Again, proactivity within minorities is paramount, but the majority should take steps to facilitate the opening of the channels. That's it.

- unabomberman

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