Male Protagonists

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Male Protagonists

Are you a manly man or a macho man?

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I think the basic difference between a "manly man" and a "macho man" is that "manly men" recognize, accept, and do what NEEDS to be done, while "macho men" are obsessed with showing the rest of the world what they CAN do.

I think Cole McGrath was both a manly man and a macho man. Manly when playing nice, macho when playing dick.

A good read, and nice to have another update on Fun space game: the game. I look forward to playing it, especially knowing the effort that has gone into it.

Warrior Within was the best PoP and still is.

But I get your point

Well I guess macho-men aren't too bad as a gameplay character... I mean look at Kratos... he pretty much fits the entire description of a macho-man. Though I do get your point, manly men are macho-men with personality and maybe a brain.

A good read, although i disagree slitly with marcus fenix (he is macho , I don't deny that, but the writers did try to make him more, how to put it, human ?)

That was a good tirade on Manly vs Macho, and a good reference point for the children who don't know the difference. Interesting idea using engine freezing over as a game play mechanic, I look forward to seeing how it plays out.

Nicely put! I think the main problem with the macho protagonist is in games that actually take themselves seriously. Think Tommy Vercetti from GTA:VC. He's abut as macho as anyone who can't swim can get, yet I don't find him pathetic, mainly because the whole game is just so damn hilarious.
Looking back at my time playing Halo3 (last week, out of boredom, and so that RDR would seem even better by comparison), Master Chief comes across as a) fucking stupid, b) having a tendency for stating the obvious, c) incapable of social interaction aside from a creepy fascination with a hologram and the admiration of those annoying sycophant soldiers, d) did I mention fucking stupid? I suppose I can understand why games with macho protagonists are so popular, after all the socially inept, overweight, hideous parental basement dwelling gamer that (stereotypically) enjoys them can fantasize about how awesome his life would be if only he could flip tanks and utter badass (sarcasm, obviously) one liners.

If humanity is really too much to ask for in a protagonist, could we just play as robots? The Terminator is just a step below your average macho protagonist in terms of relatability imho

You already talked about female characters before, but what is the terminology for female variants of manly and macho?

There are few things more irritating than when a game expects us to take a macho protagonist seriously, but few things funnier than when the game DOESN'T expect us to. Tommy Vercetti is another example, so (I hope) are Leon Kennedy and Chris Redfield.

Why is the Macho-Man so hated in the gaming community? Am I the only one who likes playing an 80s Action Hero as my video game persona? I love the Rambo/John McClain macho badass banter, but it seems that it is constantly ripped apart in the games media.

Have all gamers been so emotionally ripped apart by "bros" and "football jock douches" that they can't enjoy the macho-man for fear of being thrown in a trashcan and given a wedgie? All joking aside: really, what is the issue with having a character that has muscles on his muscles and uses a gun as big as he is?

AnarchistAbe:
Why is the Macho-Man so hated in the gaming community? Am I the only one who likes playing an 80s Action Hero as my video game persona? I love the Rambo/John McClain macho badass banter, but it seems that it is constantly ripped apart in the games media.

Have all gamers been so emotionally ripped apart by "bros" and "football jock douches" that they can't enjoy the macho-man for fear of being thrown in a trashcan and given a wedgie? All joking aside: really, what is the issue with having a character that has muscles on his muscles and uses a gun as big as he is?

Doesn't beat the 'Dutch' character...

I love the fact you put Niko (Spelled right?) into the Manly men characters. Althougth there is a lot of dislike for GTA4, I think they did an awesome job on the characters, Niko(sp?) and the characters from TBOGT especially.

I think the route of the problem is bad writing.
It doesn't mean we just get lackluster stories for the characters to exist in, we also get lackluster characters to inhabit the lackluster worlds.

AnarchistAbe:
Why is the Macho-Man so hated in the gaming community? Am I the only one who likes playing an 80s Action Hero as my video game persona? I love the Rambo/John McClain macho badass banter, but it seems that it is constantly ripped apart in the games media.

Have all gamers been so emotionally ripped apart by "bros" and "football jock douches" that they can't enjoy the macho-man for fear of being thrown in a trashcan and given a wedgie? All joking aside: really, what is the issue with having a character that has muscles on his muscles and uses a gun as big as he is?

Nothing really. I like the characters on the opposite extreme personally. I don't feel anything is inherently wrong with he slightly effeminate, softer male characters either. To each his own?

Sovvolf:
Well I guess macho-men aren't too bad as a gameplay character... I mean look at Kratos... he pretty much fits the entire description of a macho-man. Though I do get your point, manly men are macho-men with personality and maybe a brain.

Well, yes, the games can be functional, but it's better if some though has been put into it. Kratos, for example, does not have the exaggerated looks typical of what Yahtzee once called "a twelve-year-old's vision of masculinity." He wears a skirt and some sandals. And the fleece, but that has a purpose.

And besides, the games do their best to show just how demented Kratos is, letting you have fun, but showing you at a lot of points that your actions are quite questionable. If anything, it's a self-aware macho game with a dark parody of the macho protagonist.

Anyway, nice to hear FSG:TG is progressing. Piloting a faulty ship and making it part of the gameplay sounds like a good way to introduce a sense of urgency. Only, the freezing thing isn't believable without some further elaboration - space isn't really cold (despite what The Phantom Menace tells you). If the ship had a faulty cooling system, with the coolant unable to stop circulating, you would have to run the engine to avoid it being frozen. But, if it's actually more intuitive for the average player to have space be an Antarctica-like environment where ships get hypothermia, it's a valid choice.

Dark Templar:

AnarchistAbe:
Why is the Macho-Man so hated in the gaming community? Am I the only one who likes playing an 80s Action Hero as my video game persona? I love the Rambo/John McClain macho badass banter, but it seems that it is constantly ripped apart in the games media.

Have all gamers been so emotionally ripped apart by "bros" and "football jock douches" that they can't enjoy the macho-man for fear of being thrown in a trashcan and given a wedgie? All joking aside: really, what is the issue with having a character that has muscles on his muscles and uses a gun as big as he is?

Nothing really. I like the characters on the opposite extreme personally. I don't feel anything is inherently wrong with he slightly effeminate, softer male characters either. To each his own?

To each his own. It all comes down to personal preference, and softer characters can be good as well (Nathan Drake comes to mind), but ,as I stated, I'll stick with Marcus Phoenix as my character =)

Great article. The sad thing is that the whole "manly vs macho" business is not confined to games either. The "macho" men of the real world might not be spending their time running around wielding swords, but that attitude of "everyone different from this is a pussy/gay/woman/etc" is something that is unfortunately all-too common amongst people that I have met. Those people, like their gaming equivalents, are always uninteresting and obnoxious to deal with, especially for someone like me who has a strong dislike for "set standards" and those who live by them.

So basically, Manly men are masculine while remaining humanized during the coarse of the game while the macho man just wants to kill stuff and looks for reasons to kill stuff? That, of coarse, being the broadest definitions of the two. I think both can be interesting in any case. It just depends on the way the character is presented. A macho man in the real world where people actually punish him for what he does would be funny, though wouldn't make for a good game. A 'manly man' seems like they'd fit perfectly into any situation though.

Yureina:
Great article. The sad thing is that the whole "manly vs macho" business is not confined to games either. The "macho" men of the real world might not be spending their time running around wielding swords, but that attitude of "everyone different from this is a pussy/gay/woman/etc" is something that is unfortunately all-too common amongst people that I have met. Those people, like their gaming equivalents, are always uninteresting and obnoxious to deal with, especially for someone like me who has a strong dislike for "set standards" and those who live by them.

OMG!!! I finally understand it, and it all goes back to my original point!!! The Macho-Man main characters remind people of the "Macho-Man" Real people they know...and hate. So, due to transitive properties, they hate these traits in the main characters!!!! Thanks Yureina, this is a major psychological breakthrough ;-)

AnarchistAbe:

Dark Templar:

AnarchistAbe:
Why is the Macho-Man so hated in the gaming community? Am I the only one who likes playing an 80s Action Hero as my video game persona? I love the Rambo/John McClain macho badass banter, but it seems that it is constantly ripped apart in the games media.

Have all gamers been so emotionally ripped apart by "bros" and "football jock douches" that they can't enjoy the macho-man for fear of being thrown in a trashcan and given a wedgie? All joking aside: really, what is the issue with having a character that has muscles on his muscles and uses a gun as big as he is?

Nothing really. I like the characters on the opposite extreme personally. I don't feel anything is inherently wrong with he slightly effeminate, softer male characters either. To each his own?

To each his own. It all comes down to personal preference, and softer characters can be good as well (Nathan Drake comes to mind), but ,as I stated, I'll stick with Marcus Phoenix as my character =)

They should make a game where there are 2 main characters, one is a Raiden esqe pretty boy and the other is a Marcus Phenix esqe macho man. They can be partners in something.......mercenaries maybe? I'll start on the design documents.

Manly men do what is necessary and right, macho men just want to prove their 'roids haven't made their penis minuscule.

-Torchedini-:
Warrior Within was the best PoP and still is.

But I get your point

Yes you're right, The Sands of Time was the best PoP and -

WHAT?!

Huh. All this coming from a guy who likes Kratos.

...

Okay okay, smartarse comments aside, I agree with his general point.

Seneschal:

Anyway, nice to hear FSG:TG is progressing. Piloting a faulty ship and making it part of the gameplay sounds like a good way to introduce a sense of urgency. Only, the freezing thing isn't believable without some further elaboration - space isn't really cold (despite what The Phantom Menace tells you). If the ship had a faulty cooling system, with the coolant unable to stop circulating, you would have to run the engine to avoid it being frozen. But, if it's actually more intuitive for the average player to have space be an Antarctica-like environment where ships get hypothermia, it's a valid choice.

On the contrary, space is quite cold. Otherwise comets would't form being big balls of ice and such.
Anyway it is nice to hear about FSG:TG again.

Once again, all I can say is that I agree with you. Honestly, man, could you say something I possibly don't agree with just so I can have the pleasure of arguing? No respect for a man's desires.

On the other hand, Space Game sounds fun. Can't wait to see it in action.

The only thing that I could slightly wonder at was The Two Thrones character being considered better than the Warrior Within character. I don't know really. While I could understand that the Warrior Within Prince Of Perisa was a bit of a whiny brat at times, I think overall he was a better character than The Two Throne's character.

However, I will admit that I actually liked Prince Of Persia: The Warrior Within the most out of the series and I found Prince Of Persia: The Two Thrones a horrible game that flopped at every area. This probably includes the character designs but considering that the few good parts of The Two Thrones was unmemorable, I couldn't really tell you. The only Prince Of Persia game I found worse than that was the X-Box 360 Prince Of Persia game. Which is like saying razor wire is worse to chew on than barbed wire. True, razor wire is worse, but they're both still awful and not something to take delight in.

AnarchistAbe:

Yureina:
Great article. The sad thing is that the whole "manly vs macho" business is not confined to games either. The "macho" men of the real world might not be spending their time running around wielding swords, but that attitude of "everyone different from this is a pussy/gay/woman/etc" is something that is unfortunately all-too common amongst people that I have met. Those people, like their gaming equivalents, are always uninteresting and obnoxious to deal with, especially for someone like me who has a strong dislike for "set standards" and those who live by them.

OMG!!! I finally understand it, and it all goes back to my original point!!! The Macho-Man main characters remind people of the "Macho-Man" Real people they know...and hate. So, due to transitive properties, they hate these traits in the main characters!!!! Thanks Yureina, this is a major psychological breakthrough ;-)

Your welcome. :)

What is Commander Shepard? Manly or Macho. Maybe both depending on Paragon or Renegade?

Space Game actually sounds REALLY good

The idea behind it is fantastic

Glad to see space game is still going forward

And, I like the anaylsis on the Manly VS Macho men.

Thats one reason why I liked Niko from GTAIV. He was a man, sure, not doing nice things, but, it wasnt without purpose at least

Interesting observation, Yahtzee.
I'm trying to apply this to other characters in video games and other media, but I keep concluding that they have elements from both the manly and macho sides. I guess it comes down to the things that REALLY define the character and the things that come to mind when you think of that character.

Dark Templar:

They should make a game where there are 2 main characters, one is a Raiden esqe pretty boy and the other is a Marcus Phenix esqe macho man. They can be partners in something.......mercenaries maybe? I'll start on the design documents.

That description really reminds me of Berserk (anime/manga), with the two main characters being polar opposites to each other.
Guts being the big short-haired muscly guy, dressed in all black, swinging a gigantic sword and is generally very anti-social but a nice guy underneath it all(though he is completely psychotic at the start).
Griffith however is of a lighter build, long hair and dresses in white and is very socially skilled and seemingly a nice guy, but at heart a relentless Nietzschian Ubermensch, who would burn you to death if you only slightly hindered his ascencion to power.

So in summation, it's basically the difference between Indiana Jones and the Village People.

Soooooo...would Kratos be a manly man or a macho man? Because he has characteristics of both. Sure he's a dick who does things out of his own sense of vengence on those who wrong him (macho man), but he can also please the ladies to no end (manly man, apparently).

I have to stop this now. My head is hurting.

Great read though.

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