Jimquisition: Accepting the Isms

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I really don't think the Lara Croft trailer was sexist, the Hitman one on the other hand I find incredibly so, it was bloody stupid and don't get me started on that Dead Island Riptide... thing...

Out of interest, any animal lovers out there? I find alot of games over look the idea of animal cruelty. I understand alot of the time its in line with the setting, dark fantasy, wild west, etc but often its just something you can do and it upsets me. Hell I love Pokemon but the game trys so desperatly to dance around the subject, I know its for kids but they seemed to address it in Black & White only to turn around at the last minute and go 'lolz, world domination', I was pissed.

Well said. It isn't as if these "isms" don't exist in other forms of media, entertainment, literature, art, pretty much everything our species creates for each other. The difference is, we study these things, we talk about them, we take a look at them to learn how people think and what they put forward to others. That's where I'd like to see games get one day, and that's something I'm working on and I know I'm not alone in that pursuit. In the mean time though, it would really help if the "community" could let go of the "from my cold dead hands" mentality and realize that discussion can be productive it doesn't always have to be a grudge match vs. "popular" thinking that's trying to extinguish them and their hobby.

You'd think the point this video makes would be obvious. Regardless, what needs to be said needs to be said. So yay to you, Jim, for saying it.

One thing left me wondering though. When Jim says he doesn't support Earthworm Jim because of the backwardness of its creator, what did he mean by that?

EDIT: never mind, a quick search answered my question.

So, in other words, and yet again for the umpteenth time, the message is gamers need to grow up and get over themselves? (Don't forget, the game developers come from the same pool of people as the gamers themselves.)

Zachary Amaranth:

bunji:
aslong as its only males getting horribly murdered it's all cool right?

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Do you look like Kratos? Or Dante? Or Phoenix? Or any other of the idealized male figures that are the exclusive body-type for male main characters in games? Because it makes total sense for cratos to be bare-chested right?

When it comes to sexualization, like tits and butts, of course there are more women presented as eye candy. But if you really think thats the worst kind of sexism you need to have your moral compass readjusted. Having some women wear revealing clothing is, I submit, a pathetic counter-weight to the trillions of times more male enemies that are killed.

Excellent points Jim.

I will say, that telling people to be reasonable, and try to meet opinions halfway, is like telling people to believe in unicorns: Largely impossible. This is BECAUSE of just what you said: The nature of the society we live in, you either have to be all for one side or the other, having ambiguous opinions is WRONG! Why? because only a traitor would have the gall to suggest that you could like and not like something, that is just what people who don't like things -Say- in order to find common ground, when arguing with other people. At least that is how it comes across most of the time, funnily enough.

Zachary Amaranth:

bunji:
aslong as its only males getting horribly murdered it's all cool right?

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Will the females be horribly murdered then? We already have Anders and that pilot guy from ME. Now it's the others side turn.

You see, the games are developed for male audience - mostly. Because sad statiistics are sad. So if you'll bring more girls to hardcore sector - be sure, you'll see results immediately. For now the female-oriented segment is rather narrow but it actually exists.

PS And to answer my own question: yes, there are tons of female opponents in TES games and lots of other RPGs. But this only makes "sexist"-screamers less credible.

bunji:

Zachary Amaranth:

bunji:
aslong as its only males getting horribly murdered it's all cool right?

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Do you look like Kratos? Or Dante? Or Phoenix? Or any other of the idealized male figures that are the exclusive body-type for male main characters in games? Because it makes total sense for cratos to be bare-chested right?

while you do have a point in that theres no good reason for kratos being bare chested and showing off his muscles, but if you think that he is sexualised then you are so wrong. yh sure there are probably a few women out there who think hes sexy but not many. its mostly done for a male power fantasy in those cases

OT i think Jim also hit on something that relates to making arguments in general. when he talks about admitting things are wrong in games but still likeing said game. i see so many people who think that because an opponant in argument conceded defeat about one thing that means they lost but it doesnt.

spartandude:

bunji:

Zachary Amaranth:

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Do you look like Kratos? Or Dante? Or Phoenix? Or any other of the idealized male figures that are the exclusive body-type for male main characters in games? Because it makes total sense for cratos to be bare-chested right?

while you do have a point in that theres no good reason for kratos being bare chested and showing off his muscles, but if you think that he is sexualised then you are so wrong. yh sure there are probably a few women out there who think hes sexy but not many. its mostly done for a male power fantasy in those cases

OT i think Jim also hit on something that relates to making arguments in general. when he talks about admitting things are wrong in games but still likeing said game. i see so many people who think that because an opponant in argument conceded defeat about one thing that means they lost but it doesnt.

How come when men are portrayed half naked and traditionally handsome its "male power fantasy" and when women are portrayed half naked and traditionally beautifull its "objectifying"? Why can't that be a female powerfantasy?

spartandude:

bunji:

Zachary Amaranth:

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Do you look like Kratos? Or Dante? Or Phoenix? Or any other of the idealized male figures that are the exclusive body-type for male main characters in games? Because it makes total sense for cratos to be bare-chested right?

while you do have a point in that theres no good reason for kratos being bare chested and showing off his muscles, but if you think that he is sexualised then you are so wrong. yh sure there are probably a few women out there who think hes sexy but not many. its mostly done for a male power fantasy in those cases

OT i think Jim also hit on something that relates to making arguments in general. when he talks about admitting things are wrong in games but still likeing said game. i see so many people who think that because an opponant in argument conceded defeat about one thing that means they lost but it doesnt.

Well now you into the morality of the intention of the designer and the morality of the outcome. I actually do think the new Dante is hot (before anyone starts flirting with me I'm not a girl) and I appreciate that even if it wasn't the intention. And there are women who treat Lara Croft as a power fantasy, sexualised or otherwise.

The intention of most games is to make money, does that sully the positive aspects?

I take my helmet off. JK, the law never rests, street judge humor. Well said Jim. Now I just need to turn this episode into neural waves or something and play it via satellite into everyone's dreams for the next 10 years or so. Thank God indeed.

Alright, after I get done writing my comment here I'll check out MDF and see how it is.

I just wanted to say again on this subject that I feel Jim misses the point entirely. Not many people are concerned that people are going to "take their games away from them" simply that people want games to be an unfettered medium, devoid of political correctness. If you start taking people being offended by things like the "Hitman: Absolution" trailer, or "Riptide" bust of bloody busts seriously, and allow them a platform, that will lead to gaming companies becoming increasingly concerned about who they might offend, rather than in making the best game they can. It's inevitable that this happens when you open the door for the PC movement, so effort is made to shut the door in it's
face rather solidly.

What's more there is the simple point that in many cases it's not even a legitimate point of view from a PC perspective, but someone looking for five minutes of fame at the expense of the games industry. A good example of
this would be the "Hitman: Absolution" trailer, there is nothing even remotely sexist about that. You hear plenty of stuff about how girls aren't given enough screen time to do cool stuff in games, and here you've got a group of over the top, heavily armed, physically ideal women coming out doing the super-villain thing in a campy game and people complain about it and calling it sexist for pretty much being the exact opposite of sexism.

To put things into perspective it's the EXACT opposite of the old stereotype where the guy can't do anything to the female villain, so the love interest/female lead has to engage her in a cat fight, so the hero's integrity can be maintained by not seeing him punch out a girl no matter how tough/brutal/evil she might be. Here we have a situation where a dude comes out and pretty much treats the ladies just like anyone else in his rogues gallery and we get complaints about that too.

That's the problem you see, and why people get all up in the face of issues like that, it's a no win scenario, and that's EXACTLY why the people bringing up the issue for the sake of attention get shut down so hard.

Showing minorities (well those who are minorities in the US if not globally) as bad guys in video games where it's appropriate, tribals as tribals, and similar things likewise are not real issues, someone who actually tries to make a platform out of that is a troublemaker, and a problem themself, rather than someone simply making a statement people don't like and being attacked. The mark of a good troll and attention seeker is to make your comments seem insightful and well thought out, it works far better than just dropping a "this sucks" in all caps and leaving. The bigger the platform you can get, the more you can troll, and if you can actually troll people into change for the lulz so much the better. People like Anita are not heroes who are making relevent observations, but troublemakers who are laughing hysterically, as white knights help them spread their lulz through the internet. Being right isn't important as a troll so much as speaking with conviction, being able to get attention, and keep the chaos going. People have simply gotten smart enough to recognize it and act accordingly.

When it comes to things like Skyrim and that entire contreversy, understand that being promiscious is a big issue today, and was an even bigger deal in ancient times. That said the entire point of Skyrim is in terms of making desicians and deciding which quests you want to do (if any at all), and how to solve them. Complaining that this quest might be considered "sexist" and deserves special mention because of it, in a game where you can engage in mass murder, torture people to find their treasure, and oh yeah... lure people back to a cave to feast on them as a cannibal, is just insane. It's simply an issue because if someone mentions SEXISM it can get one a platform, it doesn't matter if it is, or the context of the events, the in-game society, or the rest of the game and the whole idea of moral choice inherant in it.

Speaking of moral choice one interesting bit about Skyrim is that I think it works better as a moral barometer on some level because it doesn't have some kind of omnipotent bean counter keeping score behind the scenes that is holding your ending hostage for good behavior. While doing all the quests/content for fun is something most people will do, it's interesting to see how many beyond the initial experience and seeing it all will do really depraved things for the sake of personal power, the game is quite beatable without Daedric artifacts for example, but ask yourself sometimes how many people actually play a character for the long term that doesn't collect them (especially the easier ones, which oftentimes involve the nastier acts).

In short if you take Skyrim as a whole, and want to make moral judgements about the game content and how people play, and your choice of target is to pick on the sexism inherant in outing a woman for being promiscious in a game based on an ancient culture, you are either a troll trying to cause trouble based on current politics, or utterly insane to the point where people should be ignoring you anyway.

As a final point, I'll say that the whole "Bust of a bloody bust" from Riptide is attached to an over the top zombie horror game. A genere known for babes, boobs, and blood.... and popular with both men and women incidently. Part of the appeal of this entire genere is that it's so "wrong". Someone who complains about an item like this by definition is someone who is not really a genere fan, and probably doesn't "get it". As a result they are not worthy of having an opinion in dealing with a niche audience and a product directed at it. Complaints about this kind of thing are along the lines of saying "you shouldn't do things like this at all" because nobody was ever saying this was right and normal to begin with (rather reveling in how utterly F@cked up it is). You attack something like this, your basically attacking a whole genere and saying things about the people who like horror movies, zombies, etc... none of who need someone else to tell them the differance between fantasy or reality or that this represents something "wrong". This paticular incident goes beyond video games, to the kind of "moral majority" whack jobs who attack horror movies and such on general principles, and that principle is pretty much that nobody should have, or enjoy, things like this. In short it's so over the top that it's a non-issue for anyone who isn't a proponent of censorship, and thus unworthy of having an opinion on the subject by definition as their point of view violates basic societal principles of expression. When you take this so far as to call it "sexist" that just becomes trolling, getting even more ridiculous than moral censors who can at least argue their convictions, your basically attaching an "ism" for the sake of getting attention. The work is by definition so bloody wrong (which is the appeal) intristically that there is no real way to attack it an these kinds of grounds. To say they "Dead Island Bust" is sexist basically implies that it's wrong because it's a female torso, like it being a guy's bloody torso would make it acceptable... stop and think about that one for a second, as that's exactly what an attack based on sexism implies. What's more when it comes to macabre art, I think it's pretty co-ed to be honest, thisis about attention rather than a valid point because technically to make a legitimate point about this you'd have to prove that there are more items like this involving women than men and that this involves a trend, and to be honest with the dummies I've seen in haunted houses, on sale around Halloween, and similar things, it actually seems co-ed to me, and truthfully I think I've probably seen a lot more displayable mock ups of dead guy parts than those from girls.... something I'd actually think Jim would know since he DOES seem to shop in those kinds of specialty stores going by some of the props he's displayed in his shows. If I remember, maybe I'll actually take count next time one of those halloween seasonal shops opens up and post my findings... I half expect I'll find that the most sexist thing is that we don't have more models of dead women (discrimination! girls can be mutilated and dismembered as easily as guys can!).

Zombine3D:

minimacker:
Having sex with many men in a medieval high-fantasy?

This is what popped in my head when I saw this video.

This game has dragons, magic, furries and people who will marry me because I'm wearing a certain kind of necklace.
I am absolutely sure the lack of slut shaming would not destroy the `realism`.

OT: Excellent points.
I find many things problematic with games (though recently I'm worried that the community is much worse than the content), but I still bloody love games. I spend the majority of my free time playing them, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't point out things that could be improved.
Sticking our collective heads in the sand just makes it look like we have something to hide.

It is good you bring up the "all-or-none" approach to rendering judgment on any given thing, such as a videogame. I agree it is probably cultural, such as, "if Skyrim has one sexist quest then Skyrim is a sexist game." It makes for better TV and is intellectually less taxing than the more functional approach of seeing things as a mixed bag.

While gamers may react to something like sexism in Skyrim in an all-or-none fashion, i.e. "screw u ur a total idiot," don't forget they are often responding to an argument poised for them in an extremist way--possibly because that is the way the writer thinks, or possibly because s/he was just trying to get more page hits by saying a popular game that isn't sexist IS sexist. Just saying, it takes two to tango. Oh I know, probably down in paragraph 12 there was a comment made about how much the author really likes the game and takes a more balanced perspective. Fine.

Since Skyrim is brought up as an example, I just wanted to say it is a game that went out of it's way to be equitable in perspective and offend the least amount of people possible, and if one quest didn't get caught by QA, it is probably something we should let slide. It is really dumb to write about sexism in Skyrim. I played over 400 hours of Skyrim and I never saw that quest.

bunji:

spartandude:

bunji:

Do you look like Kratos? Or Dante? Or Phoenix? Or any other of the idealized male figures that are the exclusive body-type for male main characters in games? Because it makes total sense for cratos to be bare-chested right?

while you do have a point in that theres no good reason for kratos being bare chested and showing off his muscles, but if you think that he is sexualised then you are so wrong. yh sure there are probably a few women out there who think hes sexy but not many. its mostly done for a male power fantasy in those cases

OT i think Jim also hit on something that relates to making arguments in general. when he talks about admitting things are wrong in games but still likeing said game. i see so many people who think that because an opponant in argument conceded defeat about one thing that means they lost but it doesnt.

How come when men are portrayed half naked and traditionally handsome its "male power fantasy" and when women are portrayed half naked and traditionally beautifull its "objectifying"? Why can't that be a female powerfantasy?

The litmus test is:
1) Choose character.
2) Check for fanfiction of character.
Results:
1) There's fanfiction: sexualized.
2) There's no fanfiction: not sexualized.
3) There's queer fanfiction: sexualized but possibly with a queer target market in mind.

It would be extremely limiting for any art form to be denied engaging in topics people would find offensive. No matter how much it might make me cringe sometimes, I hesitate to condemn any art for offending me. Instead I ask why I find something offensive.

Art is a reflection of society, and as long as our society has these negative aspects it will continued to be portrayed in art. More frequently though, the offense is not in the game's content but with the attitude towards their audience's expected response that bothers gamers so much. Gamers don't want to be accused as accepting any Ism, and worse gamers are still isolated enough to feel their community is being single out for these fault in society.

These offensive moments should be conversational pieces in the discussions to how to improve society. I think the backlash from gamers come from structuring the conversation like these are issues that only need to be fixed in games. That ignores the root cause, which is what we actually need to face rather than propping up games as the culprit.

That being said, no one can ignore the transformational power art can have on society. When it doesn't merely reflect on what we are, but causes us to reflect on what that is, art can change us and eventually change society. People are not wrong to clamor for games to do this, but it is only going to come about by offending our sensibilities, in a deeper more visceral way than the examples usually brought up.

Zachary Amaranth:

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Your example is blatantly false equivalence.

The equivalent of a female made to appeal to men is a man made to appeal to women. Not some ridiculous monstrosity made with the sole purpose of saying, "Screw you men!"

Were it so simple; once I learn there's something problematic about something I like, I can never look at it the same way again, like learning my best friend killed a baby.
Not that I'm resistant to criticism, it just makes me sad.

Not entirely on topic but was mentioned in the vid, I really don't like it when people assume criticism = hate. It's happened so often that I criticise something on a forum and many assume I hate it. Just because I criticise it, doesn't mean I don't like it. In most cases when I criticise something, I do it because I like it so much and not because I dislike it and I'm getting really tired of having to explain that despite that, I still like it. Just wanted to say this.

Anyway, I get your point and I agree, some gamers are too eager to silence those who criticise games in this regard. But, I don't think it's as bad as you say it is. If we take the Anita shitstorm for example. I was there and here's how it happened:
A bit after she started her Kickstarter, people on /v started spamming it the whole fucking time. Keep in mind that there are about 200 million unique users on 4chan a year. There were a hundred threads per hour. So of course many watched and many got mad. The stupidest members went to her video and made rude and inappropriate comments because ''omg I'm so cool and she so stupid!!!11!1!''
Later another video from her got spammed again. Not as much as her first but I actually talked to a guy who got banned for making fifteen fucking threads about this video. He said something along these lines "women are trying to ruin gaming and this must be discussed." He couldn't give me any examples to back that up other than Halo 4. Of course he didn't say or maybe didn't know that in a follow up statement, XBL said that they weren't going to monitor Halo 4's servers any more closely or be more liberal with the bans than any other game.
He got banned again for ban evasion.

So basically, a small handful of idiots go out of their way and give people like Anita attention and justification. It's really annoying because I doubt she would have ever been funded without the massive attentionseeking campaign she was given by idiots.
And that's just an example. I realise that there are still people out there who think gaming is just a boys only club but it's just not as bad as some may think, when reading the news.

As for devs doing stupid things like the Hitman trailer or the preorder item for Dead Island, I may be oversimplifying it but I think it's just mostly anti social devs, who've been isolated from the world for too long or stupid marketing departments who don't know what their consumer base wants. Or maybe they know that exactly and do this kind of thing for free advertisement.
One thing that would make gaming more enjoyable for everyone is if it wasn't riddled with stereotypes. If it's one think that I'd want to get rid of in this world, it would be stereotypes and I'm talking about all stereotypes, not just women and black people. I mean all genders, ethnicities and sexualities.
Games, seem to have a problem with breaking out of them. At least many big mainstream games.
That's why I applaud nearly every game or at least every character who breaks the stereotypes that are typically associated with them, even if the character isn't that well written overall. Cortez from ME3 would be a good example. He's gay but it's not a big deal at all in the game. It's not even mentioned directly at all or discussed or anything like that. Well, the character itself isn't that deep, the only really defining feature is that he's worrying whether his husband is still alive, if I remember his story correctly. Still, Bioware didn't go yelling, "hey look, there's a gay character in the game! He's gay. Really." He's just there, part of the crew like everyone else, doesn't behave any different than all the other crew members.

I have to agree, Jim. Games FINALLY have first amendment rights, so we don't need to freak out about games being taken from us. We SHOULD confront games when they pull shit like that, and say "Hey, that's not cool" and thus hopefully have less isms in future games.

DVS BSTrD:
No! We need even MORE games! EVERYONE needs a games! Have gamers armed with DSs patrolling our schools.

AGREED! I think you and I will get along ve-

A national database to track all the JRPG loving deviants!

HEY! >: ( What's wrong with JRPGs?! *pulls his GBA on you* I got Golden Sun in there and I'm not afraid to use it!

m19:

Zachary Amaranth:

Will the males be wearing bikinis and have implant-augmented tits shoved in them? Because then you might have a fair comparison.

Your example is blatantly false equivalence.

The equivalent of a female made to appeal to men is a man made to appeal to women. Not some ridiculous monstrosity made with the sole purpose of saying, "Screw you men!"

While you are completely correct, I think what's most interesting about the analogy is that it is dificult to find female fantasies that involve completely dehumanizing and humiliating their male sex object. That's not unexpected though, given the nature of sexism.

I couldn't agree more. However, I do feel there is room for discussion on whether or not these things, and how the community receives them, can affect future game development in a bad way.

I have no problem accepting any "ism" when I agree it's there. Most of the time I think it's not.

Also someone needs to do actual representative research on these subjects. Because Anita, a twitter hashtag, or conclusions based on 4chan's rape threats, don't cut it.

aegix drakan:
I have to agree, Jim. Games FINALLY have first amendment rights, so we don't need to freak out about games being taken from us. We SHOULD confront games when they pull shit like that, and say "Hey, that's not cool" and thus hopefully have less isms in future games.

DVS BSTrD:
No! We need even MORE games! EVERYONE needs a games! Have gamers armed with DSs patrolling our schools.

AGREED! I think you and I will get along ve-

A national database to track all the JRPG loving deviants!

HEY! >: ( What's wrong with JRPGs?! *pulls his GBA on you* I got Golden Sun in there and I'm not afraid to use it!

All this could have been avoided if those games were carrying more games. We need metagames to ensure the safety of games from games with games for games...... games.

aegix drakan:
I have to agree, Jim. Games FINALLY have first amendment rights, so we don't need to freak out about games being taken from us. We SHOULD confront games when they pull shit like that, and say "Hey, that's not cool" and thus hopefully have less isms in future games.

Your first amendment has no power here in not-America land.

There is a large difference between "shut up you'll get games taken away" and "shut up you're talking nonsense". But since I've not read the comments Jim is talking about I'm not sure which to believe.

m19:
I have no problem accepting any "ism" when I agree it's there. Most of the time I think it's not.

Also someone needs to do actual representative research on these subjects. Because Anita, a twitter hashtag, or conclusions based on 4chan's rape threats, don't cut it.

I think you should watch the video again.

JudgeGame:

While you are completely correct, I think what's most interesting about the analogy is that it is dificult to find female fantasies that involve completely dehumanizing and humiliating their male sex object. That's not unexpected though, given the nature of sexism.

Which male fantasies (in games) do that?

I have to say I agree with the point that the people discussing are on extreme sides of each other. However the internet doesn't have a middle ground. You're either black or white, there's no grey in the middle or any other colour somewhere in the equation.

This is part of the reason there's so much hostility towards feminists. Extreme feminism inspires extreme misogyny. I tend to stay away from all sexism, feminism and homophobia debates because I don't get along with either extreme side and I don't want to be associated with either side.

I was concerned that one significant point would be overlooked, but Jim sort of touched on it. I think many gamers fear that once we start accepting criticism of things like racism and sexism within the siege-engineered walls of our culture, we open the gates for criticism from the outside, no matter how ill-informed, misguided, or straight-out agenda-driven.

Now, yeah, that's not healthy. We need the people who are best informed about our medium and culture to be able to talk about it, including in ways that it falls short. And yet...

A recent article about the effect of "trolls" on Internet culture comes to mind, with its noting that such behavior drives everyone to extremes. I may dislike the way women are treated like rewards and ciphers in many games, or that dark-skinned characters are limited to shallow antagonists or stereotypical sidekicks in others. But I hesitate to take a position that might see me lumped in with those who reflexively treat any criticism of their criticism as misogyny, homophobia, or racism, who believe that because they're "fighting the good fight" it doesn't matter how scattershot their aim is or how many people who might be sympathetic to some of their broader ideals are utterly turned off of the issue by the hostility and presumptuousness of their rhetoric.

I read the Sophie Prell article Jim cited in the video. I genuinely winced at her account of the "I suck" t-shirt, and nodded at some of her points. But then I saw there was a link on the sentence, "Well, I'm not crazy", and I winced again, saying to myself, "What do you want to bet that's the 'gaslighting' article?"

...Yep.

I'll let anyone who cares to look up the article and its citation if they want; it's yet another case where while I grimace at recognition in some of the things it says, it also makes me say, "Yes, but... haven't you just given every woman one more handy catchphrase to dismiss any criticism directed towards their arguments? Do we need another piece of shorthand for anyone who is interested in addressing the middle ground to hurdle before getting into the meat of an actual point?" ("Look, I'm not a misogynist, I'm not blinded by my participation in the patriarchy, I'm not trying to gaslight you, and whether you were a man or a woman, you would still be coming off as a hysterical lunatic... YES, I'm fucking aware of the linguistic origins of the word 'hysteria'...")

I thought about the Mages Guild storyline in Skyrim, how yet again the pattern of a fallen leader giving up their mantle to the relatively inexperienced Player Character played out despite the existence of people with far greater seniority. But there weren't a large number of female NPCs who would have been the obvious choice to step forward to fill the role instead, and so that plotline went unremarked in Ms. Prell's article.

And I'm just so tired of anyone, no matter how noble their intentions, even obliquely implying that every woman, every homosexual character, every minority character has to be a role model. I've seen arguments tear even people who would otherwise be on the same side apart, with one side saying character "x" is deep and interesting and another saying those same traits the other side praise make that character stereotypical or a poor reflection on every other member of their minority. This is not progress- this is how we get characters who are designed by marketing departments and focus groups rather than goddamn writers.

Yes, I would be happy to see more strong female characters, more intelligent and emotionally moderate black and hispanic characters, more gay characters who are about more than their sexuality. But it's not my place to saddle any individual game- or games as a whole- with that as their responsibility. If we get there, we need to get there organically, in part by getting more people within those groups into the industry, and I think that will happen in time. But if I'm tired of rescuing Ms. Sex Object, that doesn't mean I want to see her replaced with Lt. Colonel Object Lesson- which seems the predictable result of certain kinds of pressure being brought to bear.

If we try to take the middle ground in these arguments, we often take fire both from the entrenched and those who besiege them. It may well be necessary, but let's not pretend for a moment that it's an easy step to make.

Has anyone pointed out that Skyrim lets the player act like an asshole on purpose? Such as that guild where you get paid for KILLING people, or that cannibal one; nevermind being mean to some woman.

Jim's definitely jumped the shark:

m19:

JudgeGame:

While you are completely correct, I think what's most interesting about the analogy is that it is dificult to find female fantasies that involve completely dehumanizing and humiliating their male sex object. That's not unexpected though, given the nature of sexism.

Which male fantasies (in games) do that?

I have a hard time convincing myself this question even deserves an answer.
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I'm convinced that in a few years' time games too will be able to tackle these issues, just like previously novels and movies did. It probably won't be in AAA titles though, or at least not at first. The big market is still too immature for this kind of talk.

Yopaz:
I have to say I agree with the point that the people discussing are on extreme sides of each other. However the internet doesn't have a middle ground. You're either black or white, there's no grey in the middle or any other colour somewhere in the equation.

This is part of the reason there's so much hostility towards feminists. Extreme feminism inspires extreme misogyny. I tend to stay away from all sexism, feminism and homophobia debates because I don't get along with either extreme side and I don't want to be associated with either side.

You only choose to believe that. Your view is not representative of the reality.

Callate:

I thought about the Mages Guild storyline in Skyrim, how yet again the pattern of a fallen leader giving up their mantle to the relatively inexperienced Player Character played out despite the existence of people with far greater seniority. But there weren't a large number of female NPCs who would have been the obvious choice to step forward to fill the role instead, and so that plotline went unremarked in Ms. Prell's article.

Eh? The dragonborne can be a woman, and the master wizard was a woman. The rank below arch-mage.

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