The Big Picture: Tropes vs. MovieBob

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Xanthious:
Hell if there are women out there super pissed off by all this they can go make their own games with sensibly dressed slightly overweight angry man hating feminists as their main characters all while portraying the evil misogynist men as some kind of half man half donkey type of creatures. Even then I can promise the vast majority of men still won't give two shits how they are being unfairly portrayed.

The laughable strawman aside, are there games you don't like? Are there things the industry does that annoy? If so, then why aren't you following your own logic and making your own game?

That's a serious question, by the way. Why? I hear a lot of you use this argument, but you all have complaints too, but you never seem to do anything. It just seems kind of weird that you tell other people to make their own games to solve problems that they perceive, but you guys never make stuff to change things that piss you off. Why is that?

I don't usually disagree with Bob, but this time... though it's mainly due to personal experience.

(Ironically I chose my avatar because she's cute, not sexy.)

Anyway, I disagree with the statement that in the workplace the physical expectations of women are carried over into irrelevant areas like researchers, economists and clerical and statistics work (my areas). Looks was not the determining factors for being hired in the workplace at all, however the policies in place to accomodate for the percieved inequalities caused way more harm that good.

I had experienced an overabundance of, hey we will treat everyone else special except for your stereotypical white male, so even though I had a ton of qualifications, others were hired due to circumstances like we need a female intake of at least 80% and 40% need to be disabled for from ATSI backgrounds (people were quite honest about this information. So when I was finally hired it was due to begging one of my contacts to at least get me into a basic administration job, I advanced quickly because I had to work hard to prove that I belonged there, (the intake involved 20 people), I was able to continually get 90%+ for all assessments and ratings, the closest second was 70%.

So I got 2 promotions, which had also purposely been held back so that disabled and female employees with lower grading could be promoted ahead (to keep things equal >_>). My workplace then held a secondary grading to replace the first in which my result was removed so that others would be given a chance to be promoted ahead. The end result was that the section head told me that despite my grade compared to other employees, I wouldn't ever be promoted again because the educational opportunities my workplace offered would only ever be given to women, disabled persons or ATSI participants.

Now I felt completely robbed, if I was able to outperform others who were already being given ample opportunities to progress, why shouldn't I also be allowed to progress also? I get that ATSI and disabled people have different needs, but these were already being seen to and the field did seem equal if not weighted in their favor. Why is the amount of effort I put in worth so much less that the tiny amount of effort others put in just because of those factors...?

This week, moviebob vs the assholes on youtube.

Nope, I agree with the majority of things you said, yeah, that's fine.

But SHE, the person doing the series, has about as much analytical skill as a 11 year old, and so I don't see how in anyway she deserves to have.

$158,922 THROWN AT HER TO DO A BUNCH OF 20 MINUTE VIDEOS EXPLAINING THE MOST BASIC THINGS.

It is fucking, outrageous. People do this shit for FREE, and do a damn sight BETTER. Hell I would actually contribute if it were say Susan Arendt, Extra Credit or even Movie Bob doing it because I know they would do a good job, BUT I STILL COULD NOT, IN A MILLION YEARS, JUSTIFY, THEM HAVING $158,922 TO DO 12 PART VIDEO SERIES.

Where the hell are the production costs, she HAS all the equipment she needs, as evidence from her god damn promo video, so why does she even need this money? And if it's to pay for her food, then that begs the question of why she say, doesn't have a job, like, I don't know, MR BOB HERE, who does basically the same thing, just a lot fucking better and of higher quality analysis. I will tell you why, because she's a hack, she's starting a kickstarter because she's so bad she can't GET anyone to pay her normally to do said series, because her quality is so poor.

So yeah, nice one internet, $158,922 for 12 videos, at 20 minutes each, of which is lower quality, than I could do. Yes, that's right, I'm saying I could do a better job than her.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PD0Faha2gow

That's what we have to look forward to, the most basic concepts, deconstructed in a fashion akin to a highschooler, and she's being paid stupid amounts of money to do it.

I feel like the biggest reason for the knee-jerk reactions is not genuine misogyny but is something Bob referenced. He says something like, "Acknowledging that there is a problem with the portrayal of women in video games is not going to cause anyone to take your games away."
But that's just it Bob, it may not in and of itself, but it may advance an agenda that has been slowly but surely chipping away in any way it possibly can at our right to enjoy games.
-Any- ammunition given to Conservative Anti-Game people, -any- at all, is a step toward the destruction of the medium, either through oppressive regulation or outright banning of certain elements that obliterate the experiences that we enjoy.
I fully admit that this is an issue, but this is the reason, the only real reason, that there is such a massive drive in the gaming community to brush this under the rug and not talk about it. It's not that we hate women, or that this stuff doesn't make us uncomfortable, it's that really getting a dialog going about it would be suicidal to our medium, just like talking about the level of Violence in games.

DrVornoff:

Xanthious:
Here's the thing. If a certain game portrays women in a such a way that it offends their delicate senses they are free to vote with their money and simply not buy it while supporting games that DON'T objectify women.

Hell if there are women out there super pissed off by all this they can go make their own games with sensibly dressed slightly overweight angry man hating feminists as their main characters all while portraying the evil misogynist men as some kind of half man half donkey type of creatures. Even then I can promise the vast majority of men still won't give two shits how they are being unfairly portrayed.

The issue of some sort of sexist conspiracy in gaming is a tempest in teapot, and a really small teapot at that. It's only an issue because a certain sect of people wish to make it one. The simple truth of the matter is sex sells. That's marketing 101 right there. However, even in light of the fact that skin moves product there are still mountains of games that don't rely on scantily clad ladies to produce sales. People are free to choose whichever they like.

The laughable strawman aside, are there games you don't like? Are there things the industry does that annoy? If so, then why aren't you following your own logic and making your own game?

That's a serious question, by the way. Why? I hear a lot of you use this argument, but you all have complaints too, but you never seem to do anything. It just seems kind of weird that you tell other people to make their own games to solve problems that they perceive, but you guys never make stuff to change things that piss you off. Why is that?

If you had read the entirety of my post, instead of just posting a small bit to misrepresent what I said in order to make your point, my solution plainly wasn't go make your own games but rather support whichever games you like to whatever degree you like. If you don't agree with a particular game portraying women a certain way then don't buy it. There are plenty of games out there that don't objectify women and if women being objectified is something you don't care for then you should support the games that are in line with those ideals.

Xanthious:
If you had read the entirety of my post, instead of just posting a small bit to misrepresent what I said in order to make your point, my solution plainly wasn't go make your own games

Then why say it at all?

Xanthious:
Here's the thing. If a certain game portrays women in a such a way that it offends their delicate senses they are free to vote with their money and simply not buy it while supporting games that DON'T objectify women.

Hell if there are women out there super pissed off by all this they can go make their own games with sensibly dressed slightly overweight angry man hating feminists as their main characters all while portraying the evil misogynist men as some kind of half man half donkey type of creatures. Even then I can promise the vast majority of men still won't give two shits how they are being unfairly portrayed.

The issue of some sort of sexist conspiracy in gaming is a tempest in teapot, and a really small teapot at that. It's only an issue because a certain sect of people wish to make it one. The simple truth of the matter is sex sells. That's marketing 101 right there. However, even in light of the fact that skin moves product there are still mountains of games that don't rely on scantily clad ladies to produce sales. People are free to choose whichever they like.

Let me put this another way, and this time I'll clearly number it so the important points don't get lost.

1. I do not have any problem with games that are made for guys.
2. I do not have any problem with games that are made for guys being advertised for guys.
3. I do have a problem with games made for a gender-neutral audience still being advertised for guys.

Here is a real-world example to make my point. Valve makes games that are gender-neutral, like many developers. However unlike many developers, Valve doesn't use tits to advertise their games. Because using the principle of "sex sells" on something which sex isn't the focus of sells the product short. Developers are slowly getting better at making games which are intended to be gender neutral actually gender neutral, however if they continue to advertise toward one gender all of that effort will be worth nothing, and they have nobody but themselves to blame.

I understand that sex sells. I repeat: I understand that tits make guys buy stuff. I do not question, have never questioned, and never will question that principle. However, I also understand that by deliberately advertising toward one gender when your product could and should appeal to both, you are automatically cutting your potential customer base in half.

If you still don't get it, feel free to inform me, because I have probably five pages of a script for a video I've been meaning to make that further illustrates my views on this. I'd be happy to post it for you, in fact I'm especially itching to do so after your asinine little "girls can go make their own girly games" comment. God. If Vornoff hadn't already done it I might have just made this whole comment about that line.

Tradjus:
I feel like the biggest reason for the knee-jerk reactions is not genuine misogyny but is something Bob referenced. He says something like, "Acknowledging that there is a problem with the portrayal of women in video games is not going to cause anyone to take your games away."
But that's just it Bob, it may not in and of itself, but it may advance an agenda that has been slowly but surely chipping away in any way it possibly can at our right to enjoy games.
-Any- ammunition given to Conservative Anti-Game people, -any- at all, is a step toward the destruction of the medium, either through oppressive regulation or outright banning of certain elements that obliterate the experiences that we enjoy.
I fully admit that this is an issue, but this is the reason, the only real reason, that there is such a massive drive in the gaming community to brush this under the rug and not talk about it. It's not that we hate women, or that this stuff doesn't make us uncomfortable, it's that really getting a dialog going about it would be suicidal to our medium, just like talking about the level of Violence in games.

Let me say one thing here. One part of actually getting an actual dialog going here is to actually gain a consensus of WHO exactly should represent the "gaming community". Cause overall the people who put all those hate comments on weren't actually the "gaming community" at all. I don't see any hard evidence or investigation linking any of these youtubers to high profile organizations like Team Liquid, ECA, CLG, or being employed by development houses like Bioware, or Totalbiscuit(whatever his production is called). They were most likely just random youtubers that to which has been proven that were intentionally baited and trolled as her video the second it was uploaded was spammed to 4chan and the video description to which was changed basically encouraged people to troll and made a leap of logic that because of hate comments she gets there is sexism in video games without actually putting forth any hard evidence or publishing any of her videos. But I'm getting side tracked.

Back to representation, we do have sections of the gaming community that actually can and do represent us for better or for worse. Groups like the ECA were certainly important to getting us in the door to witness and petition towards the Brown v. EMA(which honestly should be called Leeland Yee v. EMA) that actually put themselves out there when both good or bad events occur. So comes the question who really should be representing the "gaming community"?

I can certainly attest that gaming clans like PMS gaming, and political groups like the ECA can and honestly should be representative of the gaming community as they know the risks of being out there making their voice heard. But along with that we need consensus before people go public. Heck the guys at Penny-Arcade certainly come to mind as being qualified as well.

One of the big problems with this youtuber is that she just titles herself as a "gamer" but as demonstrated in her work she honestly doesn't really care about the medium as a whole and it too quickly to spurn games that she most likely have never played through in order to promote her own personal opinion of how there is sexism everywhere. I don't think you want just some random person here to spout their opinion as the gospel and word of all "gamers" cause I know I certainly don't want to be represented by this youtuber as a gamer. She is so quick to not take the time to do the research understanding the plot, backstory, and narrative of other forms of media as well. Remember she went so far to actually call Zack Snyder the director of Suckerpunch a "parasite", and "male backlash against women". Yet she didn't even bother mentioning or most likely didn't know that he was also involved in directing Watchmen and 300. That is what should bother people is that she was more interested into being negative and insulting people than actually demonstrating due diligence and go over the entire portfolio and personal life of the person she is quickly willing to call a parasite.

Think of it this way for a second. If she was more than willing to quickly call Zack Snyder a "parasite" then how do you think you will feel when she calls SHIGERU MIYAMOTO a "parasite" for his creation of Mario Bros. and Zelda? I find it hard that all those people who donated money to her were be more than willing to stick by her side. I really don't see how she is going to be giving all the people who were instrumental in creating the video game industry we know and love from it's roots to today without her lashing out at people in the video game industry both past and present. I don't see how all those people who donated are all of a sudden going to be on her side when they find it is their favorite designer, publisher, writer, director being called a "parasite" or other insults.

Aside from the physical aspect, one thing I was surprised he didn't mention with regard to male stereotypes vs female stereotypes in games, is how males are most often depicted as being strong and in charge. Of course most men don't have a problem with that sort of stereotype. If men were more often that not presented as the subservient, less capable character next to women (the way women usually are presented), I think men would have more of a problem with it. Male characters aren't usually demeaned the way female characters are, so of course those stereotypes don't seem to bother them as much.

DVS BSTrD:

Eri:
I think the worst part of the whole Tropes thing is the fact she's gotten over 150,000$ and for what? To make what is basically youtube videos? That's absurd.

Take a look at this show, extra credits, yahtzee, etc... They make on average a 5 minute video a week and constantly put them out, she is making what amounts to 3 hours tops of videos and making way more than I'm sure anyone else gets paid, and for much less work too.

So what? That's all she said she was gunna do. If people want to give her money for that it's fine by me, not like a 5 minute video about a videogame trope ever hurt anyone.

These aren't documentaries that require $3000 cameras and editing equipment, and yes that shit will run you up in the bank. I know, I took film classes, and the costs are staggering. Bob and Yahztee get paid to talk into a microphone using a script they write once a week. She is making something completely different that people are paying for, meaning they already own it if it gets funded.

This was not an analysis of the portrayal of MovieBob in media. I am deeply disappointed.

Also, once again, the "no one designs male characters to appeal to women" argument does not apply to Japan. You know, the place where like half the world's games (and certainly the world's most sexual games) get made? Yeah, they design male game characters to appeal to women, just like they do in their comic books (ever since they started doing reader surveys in the early 90s), just like they do in their cartoons, just like they do in their live action television (you know those rubber-suit superhero shows they make for eight year old boys? The men they cast in those are chosen to appeal to women now. It stops mothers from changing the channel). No, not every male character in a Japanese game is designed that way or for that reason and yes, the games built around identifying with a female protagonist and ogling hot guys basically never get localized. It sucks, I know, but can we please get past this outdated eurocentrism? All it takes is a few words to qualify that you're only talking about your own culture, not everyone else's, and that's especially important when your made-up game title is clearly not something that would be made in Europe or America.

OtherSideofSky:
This was not an analysis of the portrayal of MovieBob in media. I am deeply disappointed.

Also, once again, the "no one designs male characters to appeal to women" argument does not apply to Japan. You know, the place where like half the world's games (and certainly the world's most sexual games) get made? Yeah, they design male game characters to appeal to women, just like they do in their comic books (ever since they started doing reader surveys in the early 90s), just like they do in their cartoons, just like they do in their live action television (you know those rubber-suit superhero shows they make for eight year old boys? The men they cast in those are chosen to appeal to women now. It stops mothers from changing the channel). No, not every male character in a Japanese game is designed that way or for that reason and yes, the games built around identifying with a female protagonist and ogling hot guys basically never get localized. It sucks, I know, but can we please get past this outdated eurocentrism? All it takes is a few words to qualify that you're only talking about your own culture, not everyone else's, and that's especially important when your made-up game title is clearly not something that would be made in Europe or America.

Since he clearly outlined what specific parts of the games are problems, it's safe to assume games that do not have those problems are excluded from criticism.

Lilani:

Xanthious:
Here's the thing. If a certain game portrays women in a such a way that it offends their delicate senses they are free to vote with their money and simply not buy it while supporting games that DON'T objectify women.

Hell if there are women out there super pissed off by all this they can go make their own games with sensibly dressed slightly overweight angry man hating feminists as their main characters all while portraying the evil misogynist men as some kind of half man half donkey type of creatures. Even then I can promise the vast majority of men still won't give two shits how they are being unfairly portrayed.

The issue of some sort of sexist conspiracy in gaming is a tempest in teapot, and a really small teapot at that. It's only an issue because a certain sect of people wish to make it one. The simple truth of the matter is sex sells. That's marketing 101 right there. However, even in light of the fact that skin moves product there are still mountains of games that don't rely on scantily clad ladies to produce sales. People are free to choose whichever they like.

Let me put this another way, and this time I'll clearly number it so the important points don't get lost.

1. I do not have any problem with games that are made for guys.
2. I do not have any problem with games that are made for guys being advertised for guys.
3. I do have a problem with games made for a gender-neutral audience still being advertised for guys.

Here is a real-world example to make my point. Valve makes games that are gender-neutral, like many developers. However unlike many developers, Valve doesn't use tits to advertise their games. Because using the principle of "sex sells" on something which sex isn't the focus of sells the product short. Developers are slowly getting better at making games which are intended to be gender neutral actually gender neutral, however if they continue to advertise toward one gender all of that effort will be worth nothing, and they have nobody but themselves to blame.

I understand that sex sells. I repeat: I understand that tits make guys buy stuff. I do not question, have never questioned, and never will question that principle. However, I also understand that by deliberately advertising toward one gender when your product could and should appeal to both, you are automatically cutting your potential customer base in half.

I have read and understood your last complete paragraph, but there's still something you and most women have not come to terms with. The gaming community and culture, if you will, has been around for 20+ years. I think anyone can agree with this. The major demographic has always been male, the age ranges have always remained around the same as well. This can be argued per generation, but the vast majority of people have grown up with games. We know things have been over sexualized. We know it, we've seen it, some of us don't necessarily like nor agree with it, but we, as a community, have never really seen a problem with it.<---Key point. Yes they should make games appeal to all demographics, but that's rather hard to do. Considering everyone and their grandma is a gamer. (Mine plays an hour of Pop-It a night, and can woop my ass in it to boot.)

With the addition of women demographics, and the feminist movements themselves, this has now become a problem that has been blown way out of proportion. (Here's were my argument can get muddled.) You, as in women, are joining a culture that is vastly different than what society typically deems it as. Yes, they are making games that are more gender neutral, and that's great. I like seeing more and more people playing video games, it's been a hobby of mine for 14+ years. But attacking a culture or a hobby just because you believe it to be sexist, after you've been targeted by the culture to join it, is where most of the outrage comes from. Most of us couldn't care less if you stick with games or not, we just don't care. It's the same thing as if you were a man. Again, if you stay with it or not, we just don't care. But the medium we enjoy has grown and evolved to what it is, and the vast majority of gamers don't want to see a MINORITY (<---Second Key Point) come in and start making big changes, or seeing something drastically change because of a MINORITY. Instead of attacking the community as a whole for perpetuating over sexualized heroes and characters, discussion could have been opened up in an intelligent manner, and those in the industry would have listened.

Now I know that 'de-sexifiying' video games won't ruin my enjoyment of them. In fact, it won't ruin the majority's enjoyment of video games, but what female gamers are doing are lashing out at a culture that has extended it's arms in invitation, and that has rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.

Now I'm not trying to attack you in general, my main argument is really in defense of how a few people have gone about 'attacking' games in a wrong way. I felt like I had a valid point to make.

CaptOfSerenity:

These aren't documentaries that require $3000 cameras and editing equipment, and yes that shit will run you up in the bank. I know, I took film classes, and the costs are staggering. Bob and Yahztee get paid to talk into a microphone using a script they write once a week. She is making something completely different that people are paying for, meaning they already own it if it gets funded.

You should watch the promo video again and take note of her equipment. Note this is equipment she already has and that is going to be my focus not the actual money or saying that she doesn't need the money.

1. Soundproofed room(see the padding)
2. Two whitelight stands with reflectors
3. HD camcorder all in one set with built-in microphone
4. Dedicated studio for recording
5. Video editing software that enables picture in picture
6. Separate microphone setup(I highly doubt given the high quality of the audio that she is using the camcorders microphone)

If anything what people should honestly be expecting if they demand transparency is where is she going and who exactly she is hiring and what resources are being purchased. Cause in terms of video equipment she doesn't the only logical thing I can see being replaced is the camcorder but for all we know she decides to leave her videos at 720P quality simply due to the fact at how much less time is required to upload those compared to 1080P videos.

EDIT: Honestly if anyone had that level of equipment and actual space as their starting point you would certainly see a lot more people producing videos. I know when I tried making videos for a gaming podcast one of the biggest problems I had with my friends was always the recording location and video quality. I had NONE of that stuff aside from the video editing software and even then I couldn't do Picture in picture with mine. Recording videos from home or at a library or in public was just out of the question. I had the script and am good at public speaking but the presentation and quality were just so poor. I can tell you that none of the money needs to go to the equipment.

Lilani:

Xanthious:
Here's the thing. If a certain game portrays women in a such a way that it offends their delicate senses they are free to vote with their money and simply not buy it while supporting games that DON'T objectify women.

Hell if there are women out there super pissed off by all this they can go make their own games with sensibly dressed slightly overweight angry man hating feminists as their main characters all while portraying the evil misogynist men as some kind of half man half donkey type of creatures. Even then I can promise the vast majority of men still won't give two shits how they are being unfairly portrayed.

The issue of some sort of sexist conspiracy in gaming is a tempest in teapot, and a really small teapot at that. It's only an issue because a certain sect of people wish to make it one. The simple truth of the matter is sex sells. That's marketing 101 right there. However, even in light of the fact that skin moves product there are still mountains of games that don't rely on scantily clad ladies to produce sales. People are free to choose whichever they like.

Let me put this another way, and this time I'll clearly number it so the important points don't get lost.

1. I do not have any problem with games that are made for guys.
2. I do not have any problem with games that are made for guys being advertised for guys.
3. I do have a problem with games made for a gender-neutral audience still being advertised for guys.

Here is a real-world example to make my point. Valve makes games that are gender-neutral, like many developers. However unlike many developers, Valve doesn't use tits to advertise their games. Because using the principle of "sex sells" on something which sex isn't the focus of sells the product short. Developers are slowly getting better at making games which are intended to be gender neutral actually gender neutral, however if they continue to advertise toward one gender all of that effort will be worth nothing, and they have nobody but themselves to blame.

I understand that sex sells. I repeat: I understand that tits make guys buy stuff. I do not question, have never questioned, and never will question that principle. However, I also understand that by deliberately advertising toward one gender when your product could and should appeal to both, you are automatically cutting your potential customer base in half.

If you still don't get it, feel free to inform me, because I have probably five pages of a script for a video I've been meaning to make that further illustrates my views on this. I'd be happy to post it for you, in fact I'm especially itching to do so after your asinine little "girls can go make their own girly games" comment. God. If Vornoff hadn't already done it I might have just made this whole comment about that line.

And, just sayin', but my two favorite game characters happen to be from a Valve Game, specifically Sniper and Engineer from Team Fortress 2. Neither is specifically handsome (Engineer exhibits why one of the nicknames for TF2 is "Jaw Fortress"), and the Sniper is a horse-faced Australian who throws jars of piss at people as one of his attacks. Yet, I do find them attractive, just not conventionally so. Bioware is another developer who makes characters who aren't conventionally attractive and yet women seem to love them (Thane, Mordin, and even Wrex are loved by women gamers. Tell me any one of those characters is "attractive" in a conventional way... and yet, it's their personalities that are more attractive than the physical appearance. I played Baldur's Gate 2, the first Bioware game that had romances (that I am aware of), and all those romances are flawed in some way. But the bias towards men in that game is obvious. Men get the choice of three different characters to Romance, women had one. Anomen, who was, to put it kindly, a dick. He could be more of a dick or less of one depending on the choices you made in your romance, but the character was a dick. Whereas men had sickly-sweet Aerie, Tsundere Jaheira or the neutral evil Drow woman Viconia deVir (which is why I say that all the romances were flawed in some way). Three versus one- there's some inequality right there. But they tried, which gives them a pass. I just wish women had as many choices for romance as men did, not one wishy-washy one. (And users tried to amend that by putting in a second romance with one of the Male Drow you meet in the underworld... Solaufein, I think it was. A good attempt, but only for the Windows version of the game, sadly.)

I'm not saying that men can't have their Big Boobed Panty Ninja characters, but the writing of those characters tends to suck, because not many characters, male or female, tend to have a coherent backstory, and even if they do have one, it's as shallow as a puddle in a parking lot. Write deeper, better characters, and the problem of their looks will tend to evaporate.

Oh, and just to bring in another form of media, my favorite character in the new Avengers flick was Bruce Banner. Not because he turns into the rampaging Green Rage beast, but because of his character and backstory. Second favorite was Tony Stark, Master of the Snarky Comment, because he made me laugh like a Hyena. (His "we all have performance issues" scene with Loki made me glad I wasn't drinking anything at the time, because I would totally have snorted liquid out of my nose.)

FrozenSkye:
I have read and understood your last complete paragraph, but there's still something you and most women have not come to terms with. The gaming community and culture, if you will, has been around for 20+ years. I think anyone can agree with this. The major demographic has always been male, the age ranges have always remained around the same as well. This can be argued per generation, but the vast majority of people have grown up with games. We know things have been over sexualized. We know it, we've seen it, some of us don't necessarily like nor agree with it, but we, as a community, have never really seen a problem with it.<---Key point. Yes they should make games appeal to all demographics, but that's rather hard to do. Considering everyone and their grandma is a gamer. (Mine plays an hour of Pop-It a night, and can woop my ass in it to boot.)

With the addition of women demographics, and the feminist movements themselves, this has now become a problem that has been blown way out of proportion. (Here's were my argument can get muddled.) You, as in women, are joining a culture that is vastly different than what society typically deems it as. Yes, they are making games that are more gender neutral, and that's great. I like seeing more and more people playing video games, it's been a hobby of mine for 14+ years. But attacking a culture or a hobby just because you believe it to be sexist, after you've been targeted by the culture to join it, is where most of the outrage comes from. Most of us couldn't care less if you stick with games or not, we just don't care. It's the same thing as if you were a man. Again, if you stay with it or not, we just don't care. But the medium we enjoy has grown and evolved to what it is, and the vast majority of gamers don't want to see a MINORITY (<---Second Key Point) come in and start making big changes, or seeing something drastically change because of a MINORITY. Instead of attacking the community as a whole for perpetuating over sexualized heroes and characters, discussion could have been opened up in an intelligent manner, and those in the industry would have listened.

Now I know that 'de-sexifiying' video games won't ruin my enjoyment of them. In fact, it won't ruin the majority's enjoyment of video games, but what female gamers are doing are lashing out at a culture that has extended it's arms in invitation, and that has rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.

Now I'm not trying to attack you in general, my main argument is really in defense of how a few people have gone about 'attacking' games in a wrong way. I felt like I had a valid point to make.

It is hard to make games that appeal to both genders, but not impossible. Again, Valve has proven that several times over. And Bioware did a pretty good job with Mass Effect, in my opinion. I guess I will go ahead and break out the video script, because in it I outline what goes wrong in this process and what to look out for to fix it. I'm not quite done editing yet, so the order might be strange and there will probably be prompts for what I want to put on screen at that moment, but I think it explains the crux of the problem pretty clearly.

I'm not 100% with Bob on this one.

He argues that men cannot miss out on jobs because of appearance, which is not true. If I want a position selling weight loss products... and I'm fat, I'm not getting it, regardless of gender. I'm an IT consultant, I cant afford to have long hair, a goatee or a visible tatoo.

Is it an evil conspiracy? Is is discrimination? No it is not. Its justa simple market reality. If the weight loss company were to be "fair" and hire overweight people, they would go out of business, the market would put them out of business, plain and simple.

I'm not saying things are 100% fair for women. They're not, but there's also a bit of traditional roles at play here. Roles woman traditionally play often depend on appearance. It just happens, and as far as I know, woman tend to be attracted to those roles. AND THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH IT. Whats is wrong is that women wanting to play other roles are judged unfairly, but then again, that is just a matter of expectations. You expect most engineers to be male, males like engineering and those going into it usually have a fair level of competency. A female engineer is still the odd one out. When you hire someone you make a bet, and the bet is coloured by experience, how else could it be? And it works the other way too, work with children is a female dominated marketplace, and men are at a disadvantage. Is it wrong? No its not.

Yes, the gaming industry is rife with stereotypes. And not coincidentally, this is a male dominated industry. Again, because it's compelling to US. How many women do you think are interested in designing games?

I assure you, if there was a market out there for games with "male stereotypes viewed from a female perspective", the games would be there. Hell, I'd go ahead and make the games myself if that would make me rich.

Lilani:

It is hard to make games that appeal to both genders, but not impossible. Again, Valve has proven that several times over. And Bioware did a pretty good job with Mass Effect, in my opinion. I guess I will go ahead and break out the video script, because in it I outline what goes wrong in this process and what to look out for to fix it. I'm not quite done editing yet, so the order might be strange and there will probably be prompts for what I want to put on screen at that moment, but I think it explains the crux of the problem pretty clearly.

I just want to make one thing clear here as well. One big decision before even the process of creating a game starts is deciding on or at least understanding your audience. Not all games have to appeal to both genders.

Trying to actually make EVERY game appeal to both genders completely ignores other demographics that basically transcend rage, gender and age. Especially when you consider that the genre(yes I'm using the term loosely) of the game you plan to create is essentially a demographic in itself and up to the developers to ensure that if said consumer understood a game like Diablo then they would be drawn to purchasing games like Torchlight. Has nothing to do with their race, age or gender but simply what kind game or book they like to play or read.

What I notice about some of the dissenters is that the freedom should be given to the developers and publishers to make the games they wish to create and to use what tools and narrative devices they see fit. Going on a tirade on how video games are sexist and creating this political correctness can actually hinder the games industry and the creative process cause if the little nugget in the back of their head(or even worse the player) feels like they shouldn't play a game cause "it's sexist" then you create a stigma where people are honestly paralyzed from actually taking part of the hobby they loved for DECADES.

LadyRhian:
And, just sayin', but my two favorite game characters happen to be from a Valve Game, specifically Sniper and Engineer from Team Fortress 2. Neither is specifically handsome (Engineer exhibits why one of the nicknames for TF2 is "Jaw Fortress"), and the Sniper is a horse-faced Australian who throws jars of piss at people as one of his attacks. Yet, I do find them attractive, just not conventionally so. Bioware is another developer who makes characters who aren't conventionally attractive and yet women seem to love them (Thane, Mordin, and even Wrex are loved by women gamers. Tell me any one of those characters is "attractive" in a conventional way... and yet, it's their personalities that are more attractive than the physical appearance. I played Baldur's Gate 2, the first Bioware game that had romances (that I am aware of), and all those romances are flawed in some way. But the bias towards men in that game is obvious. Men get the choice of three different characters to Romance, women had one. Anomen, who was, to put it kindly, a dick. He could be more of a dick or less of one depending on the choices you made in your romance, but the character was a dick. Whereas men had sickly-sweet Aerie, Tsundere Jaheira or the neutral evil Drow woman Viconia deVir (which is why I say that all the romances were flawed in some way). Three versus one- there's some inequality right there. But they tried, which gives them a pass. I just wish women had as many choices for romance as men did, not one wishy-washy one. (And users tried to amend that by putting in a second romance with one of the Male Drow you meet in the underworld... Solaufein, I think it was. A good attempt, but only for the Windows version of the game, sadly.)

I'm not saying that men can't have their Big Boobed Panty Ninja characters, but the writing of those characters tends to suck, because not many characters, male or female, tend to have a coherent backstory, and even if they do have one, it's as shallow as a puddle in a parking lot. Write deeper, better characters, and the problem of their looks will tend to evaporate.

Oh, and just to bring in another form of media, my favorite character in the new Avengers flick was Bruce Banner. Not because he turns into the rampaging Green Rage beast, but because of his character and backstory. Second favorite was Tony Stark, Master of the Snarky Comment, because he made me laugh like a Hyena. (His "we all have performance issues" scene with Loki made me glad I wasn't drinking anything at the time, because I would totally have snorted liquid out of my nose.)

Xanthious:
-snip-

I couldn't agree with you more in all of that. In my post above I posted that script I was talking about, and in it I say about the exact same thing. Even about TF2, it's toward the end of the script.

It's funny how people still deny the double standards men and women are held to as far as appearance in media, even when it's staring them right in the face. Just look at couples in sitcoms. King of Queens, Everybody Loves Raymond, George Lopez, hell even Cheers, Frasier, and the Flintstones. The male sides of the main couples in those stories are chosen for their character, not their looks. Which means most of them are either overweight or just don't exactly fit the typical Hollywood standard of attractive. But, that's okay because they're there for their characters, not to be eye candy.

But their wives, and other significant females in the show? All thin, all in shape, and all beautiful. It's as though males have a right to be unattractive as long as they're endearing, but even if the women are endearing they must be attractive as well. The only women allowed to not be thin or attractive are older women, or women whose story arc has specifically to do with their weight.

That is one reason I love the show Roseanne. It's a show that has an overweight couple, but it's not about a couple that is overweight. It has a gay character, but it's not about a character being gay. It has a teen pregnancy, but it's not about a teenager being pregnant. It has all these things, these elements of real-life unglossed by Hollywood standards of "normal," and it doesn't make any of them the only punchline. Because life doesn't come with unusual circumstances that are perfectly sterile and cauterized, pre-packaged with strict sets of morals and lessons, and totally free of other problems which could distract from the lessons of the first. Life is a mess of problems thrown together and added up at random.

Anyway, if you're wondering why I quoted you Xanthious it's because I wanted you to know I have the script up there.

Tenmar:
Trying to actually make EVERY game appeal to both genders completely ignores other demographics that basically transcend rage, gender and age. Especially when you consider that the genre(yes I'm using the term loosely) of the game you plan to create is essentially a demographic in itself and up to the developers to ensure that if said consumer understood a game like Diablo then they would be drawn to purchasing games like Torchlight. Has nothing to do with their race, age or gender but simply what kind game or book they like to play or read.

What I notice about some of the dissenters is that the freedom should be given to the developers and publishers to make the games they wish to create and to use what tools and narrative devices they see fit. Going on a tirade on how video games are sexist and creating this political correctness can actually hinder the games industry and the creative process cause if the little nugget in the back of their head(or even worse the player) feels like they shouldn't play a game cause "it's sexist" then you create a stigma where people are honestly paralyzed from actually taking part of the hobby they loved for DECADES.

Okay, once again, I am not saying that every game should be gender neutral. I am saying games that are INTENDED TO BE gender neutral need to pay close attention to make sure they achieve their goal. I can't speak for what other women say about games, and I am not going to argue what other women have to say about them. This is about what I am saying about it, and I am saying gamemakers can make games for whomever they want as long as they make a legitimate effort to get it right, and don't try to act like it's "good enough" when they fall short of the mark.

newwiseman:
In all seriousness, I've always debunked the argument of the mountain of muscle argument as that is an obtainable goal if you put in the time an effort to get that buff. A female will not however (without surgery) ever be able to turn into Ayane; no matter how much time or effort they put in to transforming themselves.

In theory you could; vigorous exercise of the pectorals pushes the breasts out and gives them natural lift (plus you can move them without hands!). If she's thin hipped, there's dressing techniques and patterns that give the illusion of wider, desirable "breeders hips". If her face is unfortunate, well, tough luck. I'm not a miracle worker. But, non-invasive and affordable surgical techniques exist that can take even the most butt-ugly person and make them passable.

Also, becoming a mountain of muscle requires a level of commitment that most men aren't willing to put in, and even if they do, may not have time to hit the gym to become muscle men. (fingers crossed they come up with affordable cybernetics; gonna get me some Adam Jensen arms...)

Unrealistic body images are as old as fiction itself: I guarantee you that not everyone in biblical times was ripped like Samson. Square jawed, perma-stubbled manly men are as common in female oriented media as it is in male oriented media, the key difference being how it's used: Women would view Mr. Man as a desirable mate, just as a male would view a lady with an hourglass figure. Men view Mr. Man as a desirable image for themselves, just as women desire to be smoking hot. It depends on the audience; context is key to everything.

Lilani:

OtherSideofSky:
This was not an analysis of the portrayal of MovieBob in media. I am deeply disappointed.

Also, once again, the "no one designs male characters to appeal to women" argument does not apply to Japan. You know, the place where like half the world's games (and certainly the world's most sexual games) get made? Yeah, they design male game characters to appeal to women, just like they do in their comic books (ever since they started doing reader surveys in the early 90s), just like they do in their cartoons, just like they do in their live action television (you know those rubber-suit superhero shows they make for eight year old boys? The men they cast in those are chosen to appeal to women now. It stops mothers from changing the channel). No, not every male character in a Japanese game is designed that way or for that reason and yes, the games built around identifying with a female protagonist and ogling hot guys basically never get localized. It sucks, I know, but can we please get past this outdated eurocentrism? All it takes is a few words to qualify that you're only talking about your own culture, not everyone else's, and that's especially important when your made-up game title is clearly not something that would be made in Europe or America.

Since he clearly outlined what specific parts of the games are problems, it's safe to assume games that do not have those problems are excluded from criticism.

No, he specifically stated, in his final argument, that the unrealistic portrayal of women in games and other media is problem, while the unrealistic portrayal of men is not, because both are primarily designed to appeal to men. I responded that I am currently living in a nation which produces a significant portion of the world's games in which this is untrue. He is not required to address this situation, but it is his responsibility to acknowledge the existence of circumstances differing from those he describes and the limited scope of his own observations.

In a multicultural industry like this one it is lazy and insulting to present anglosphere tropes as if they are universally applicable. It is an intellectual legacy of the modernist culture of imperialism and Movie Bob, who has devoted an episode to such things in the past, should do a better job qualifying his statements. His own inability to speak Japanese or lack of personal experience with the popular culture of Japan are no excuse.

vxicepickxv:
I'm not really sure what to say other than this is a very professional way of dealing with the subject at hand.

The next question is what do we do about it?

Accept that it exists, scold everyone who does it, and then actively try to do the exact opposite.

Do I agree with that myself? Not really, but that's the inevitable expectation.

Also find it a little weird that I'm supposed to be into muscle bound guys as my personal dream body image? I dunno...sounded like he said a quarter isn't a quarter, it's 25 cents. He even called it Art when talking about the Adonis.

Ah well, I don't really care one way or the other. Sure he mentioned Mario but didn't mention Peach, "But she's a Gorgeous Princess!" Well...I guess, but she's not hypersexualized, anime pictures not withstanding.

She's also arguably the most identifiable female character in Video games.

newwiseman:
In all seriousness, I've always debunked the argument of the mountain of muscle argument as that is an obtainable goal if you put in the time an effort to get that buff. A female will not however (without surgery) ever be able to turn into Ayane; no matter how much time or effort they put in to transforming themselves.

Uh...I was in a pretty heavy martial arts training routine for two straight years. I ate well, drank protein shakes, etc etc.

I didn't gain a pound throughout the whole ordeal. My endurance is great though.

I'm not sure how much more effort you can put into working out beyond it literally becoming your job and your free time for two straight years >_>. I realize I'm probably more the exception to the rule though.

OtherSideofSky:

Lilani:

OtherSideofSky:
This was not an analysis of the portrayal of MovieBob in media. I am deeply disappointed.

Also, once again, the "no one designs male characters to appeal to women" argument does not apply to Japan. You know, the place where like half the world's games (and certainly the world's most sexual games) get made? Yeah, they design male game characters to appeal to women, just like they do in their comic books (ever since they started doing reader surveys in the early 90s), just like they do in their cartoons, just like they do in their live action television (you know those rubber-suit superhero shows they make for eight year old boys? The men they cast in those are chosen to appeal to women now. It stops mothers from changing the channel). No, not every male character in a Japanese game is designed that way or for that reason and yes, the games built around identifying with a female protagonist and ogling hot guys basically never get localized. It sucks, I know, but can we please get past this outdated eurocentrism? All it takes is a few words to qualify that you're only talking about your own culture, not everyone else's, and that's especially important when your made-up game title is clearly not something that would be made in Europe or America.

Since he clearly outlined what specific parts of the games are problems, it's safe to assume games that do not have those problems are excluded from criticism.

No, he specifically stated, in his final argument, that the unrealistic portrayal of women in games and other media is problem, while the unrealistic portrayal of men is not, because both are primarily designed to appeal to men. I responded that I am currently living in a nation which produces a significant portion of the world's games in which this is untrue. He is not required to address this situation, but it is his responsibility to acknowledge the existence of circumstances differing from those he describes and the limited scope of his own observations.

In a multicultural industry like this one it is lazy and insulting to present anglosphere tropes as if they are universally applicable. It is an intellectual legacy of the modernist culture of imperialism and Movie Bob, who has devoted an episode to such things in the past, should do a better job qualifying his statements. His own inability to speak Japanese or lack of personal experience with the popular culture of Japan are no excuse.

Japan isn't totally innocent, you know. Ivy from Soul Calibur is always brought up in these sorts of discussions, and both she and her games are the products of Capcom. And she is rightly used as an example, because there is absolutely no reason for her to be dressed like that. It is not explained by her character or her storyline. The only reason she's like that is for gratuitous oogling.

This is about a problem, not about regions. I'm aware there is a bit of a problem with gamers assuming their region is the only one that exists, hell that is a problem with every form of media and sector of life. But if you're going to claim a region is totally innocent of criticisms which might be inadvertently thrown its way, the first thing you have to do is be correct. Which in this case, I'm afraid you aren't.

I'm honestly surprised Bob did what amounts to a promotional for this series. No reasonable person will deny that games tend to be overwhelmingly sexist, and nobody who thinks they aren't is going to be tuned in. Frankly, I see the whole thing as a huge scam. It would be one thing if she was focusing an entire series on hypothetical ways to improve the situation, or maybe how consumers can affect a positive change away from sexism, but as is shes getting paid to tell us that sexism in games EXISTS. It's frankly disgusting that someone would ask for money to essentially complain about a well known and documented fact. That doesn't help at all, and its lazy. For sake of example, you see PSAs about how to avoid causing forest fires but you would never see a PSA explaining that forest fires are a thing.

Furthermore, between Bob ignoring all the reasonable criticism and the recent article, id say that the escapist has some kind of interest in supporting this project and im very disappointed.

Wait, 12? Damn it! Did Big Boobed Panty Ninja 11 come out already? God, I always miss launch news these days!

Elate:
*Snip*

I like how she's supposed to be pointing out hypocrisy in gender relations, but then the videos in the side bar are titled "What liquor ads teach us about men." and "The real reason guys should hate Twilight." like there's some sort of dudebro hive-mind that we're all a part of.

Lilani:

Japan isn't totally innocent, you know. Ivy from Soul Calibur is always brought up in these sorts of discussions, and both she and her games are the products of Capcom. And she is rightly used as an example, because there is absolutely no reason for her to be dressed like that. It is not explained by her character or her storyline. The only reason she's like that is for gratuitous oogling.

This is about a problem, not about regions. I'm aware there is a bit of a problem with gamers assuming their region is the only one that exists, hell that is a problem with every form of media and sector of life. But if you're going to claim a region is totally innocent of criticisms which might be inadvertently thrown its way, the first thing you have to do is be correct. Which in this case, I'm afraid you aren't.

I would like game developers to just make a "scanty armor" and a "regular armor" set for every character. Then track the data for what is used more.

Not that it means we should stick with what is used more, I'd just be curious if this is the market meeting a need or responding to a need that doesn't actually exist.

It would also bring choice into the matter. I'm sure with character editors the way they are we could add in modifiers so people could make everyone a B Cup in a suit with average complexion etc etc.

I will note as a kid I used IVY because her sword is obscenely strong. But who did I use more than her?

A Weary Exile:

Elate:
*Snip*

I like how she's supposed to be pointing out hypocrisy in gender relations, but then the videos in the side bar are titled "What liquor ads teach us about men." and "The real reason guys should hate Twilight." like there's some sort of dudebro hive-mind that we're all a part of.

Bob suggested nothing short of that by saying the male thing is cool because its what all men are deigning to be.

So I guess she's innocent in that respect :P.

A Weary Exile:

Elate:
*Snip*

I like how she's supposed to be pointing out hypocrisy in gender relations, but then the videos in the side bar are titled "What liquor ads teach us about men." and "The real reason guys should hate Twilight." like there's some sort of dudebro hive-mind that we're all a part of.

It's also funny how half the adverts make the men also look like morons and such, but she doesn't even pick up on that in the slightest, yet it is still blatant sexism.

But yo bro, didn't you like totes hear me telling you that through the broverlord?

theultimateend:

It would also bring choice into the matter. I'm sure with character editors the way they are we could add in modifiers so people could make everyone a B Cup in a suit with average complexion etc etc.

I will note as a kid I used IVY because her sword is obscenely strong. But who did I use more than her?

You son of a bitch! Well, at least you didn't use Raphael. Gotta say I personally like to play Kilik and Maxi. Loved their backstory and their own relation to Soul Calibur and of course I'm a sucker for nunchucks and staves.

A Weary Exile:

Elate:
*Snip*

I like how she's supposed to be pointing out hypocrisy in gender relations, but then the videos in the side bar are titled "What liquor ads teach us about men." and "The real reason guys should hate Twilight." like there's some sort of dudebro hive-mind that we're all a part of.

I think you might be surprised. I don't know which one, but I specifically remember there was an episode of Big Picture where he said something like "Guys, if we get to have Ivy from Soul Calibur, we can't complain about girls getting the werewolves in Twilight. Fair is fair. If we get to have our big breasted ladies dressed like they're in an S&M club, they get to have their werewolves dressed like guys from Chippendale's. Fair is fair." Because apparently enough guys were complaining about how sexualized the guys from Twilight are, he caught wind of it and felt compelled to mention it.

I know not all guys are like that, and I'm pretty sure he's aware of that too (though admittedly Bob tends to be very anti-dudebro). But it's still interesting to see. Sex sells, and all that.

Blade_125:

Rednog:
I still face-palm when I hear talk about the whole And yes before anyone goes "oh but there are much bigger problems with this controversy," I know. But if she can complain about something like Legos when there are huge human rights violations in the world in regards to females, I can complain about parts of her nonsense.

If we can't fix sexism here how can we hope to fix it elsewhere. Your argument doesn't hold up. There are millions starving in other countries so I shouldn't give money to the local food bank?

I never understand why so many people use the doctrine of relative filth. Maybe because it's easier than trying to fix the problems. It's worse somewhere else so why should I bother fixing something not as bad but closer to home.

I think what Rednog was trying to say was that with all the fuckloads of money she raked in, she'd have relatively more constructive and relevant things to say, because seriously? Complaining about motherfucking LEGOS? What is this I don't even.

Yes, the revolution starts at home, but with all that money, one would think that she'd put it to good use for things other than bitching about the fact that games are geared towards 15-25 year old heterosexual males, who are the core consumers of video games.

Tenmar:

theultimateend:

It would also bring choice into the matter. I'm sure with character editors the way they are we could add in modifiers so people could make everyone a B Cup in a suit with average complexion etc etc.

I will note as a kid I used IVY because her sword is obscenely strong. But who did I use more than her?

You son of a bitch! Well, at least you didn't use Raphael. Gotta say I personally like to play Kilik and Maxi. Loved their backstory and their own relation to Soul Calibur and of course I'm a sucker for nunchucks and staves.

I'm actually a pretty big fan of Soul Calibur. Which is why I usually get bummed out when people can't get past the character models.

I'm no expert in how to fix the issue of women being abused in the business place. I still really REALLY want there to be a complete gender shift so I can be expected to work at home and women get the better pay and benefits at work.

I've done the housewife life, I loved it. I'm actually pretty bummed that the cost of living in California requires my Wife and I to both work. I'd eat up the housework, I'm a sucker for a vacuum (heh).

But I digress. Voldo is absolutely fantastic. I can't stand Maxi (I don't know why I win when I do win with him) but yes, Kilik is awesome sauce.

Wow...this post really took a weird ass detour before it came back to my original point...

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