Jimquisition: Objectification And... Men?

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Sirevien:
15 pages of people justifying their desires for big boobs and fears of emasculation.

Well done Jim!

Took the words right out of my mouth.

Need some evidence that the gaming community needs to grow up about its perceptions regarding gender? Any thread on this board that features the word 'gender' or even touches on the theme goes for twenty pages of heated arguing.

A generation from now, we'll be looking back on all this nonsense and laugh at how backwards we once were.

ZexionSephiroth:
Hmm...

As with every time the issue of gender representation in anything comes up, my first reaction is to judge what I like in Women, and what I'd like to see in their representation. And a Slight variant of the same questions for men that accounts for the fact I'm not attracted to them.

And now... Considering men aren't objectified, but unfairly idealized, I've now got to think up a slightly modified approach...

And what better way to put it than in a hypothetical narrative?

A prince has been kidnapped and is being used as a bartering chip, and three female knights decided to go on the quest to rescue him... For the Big Money Reward, because they actually hate the guy.

They go there, kick ass, and then reach the guy, who seems to be expecting them to give him a kiss, but instead they just drag him back to the castle over their shoulder and give him to the King, who promptly locks the prince away to be used later as a bargaining chip to a an Amazon Tribe's Princess, who agrees to marry the stupid git if it will unite thier counties.

Later, the Prince is mysteriously Assassinated after the wedding. Nobody cares, and nobody is surprised. And from then on, the united country is ruled by the Amazon Princess, who rules kindly, justly, but also firmly against anyone who dare upset the peace.

...

Now THAT is how you Objectify Men!

...

Meanwhile, having less objectified and more idealized women would be like having the female knights have A or B cup breasts and Traverse their way across entire continents in full armor/clothing, fighting creatures many times their size. And the Amazon Princess almost gets confused for a boy underneath the bundle of furs she wears... Which she skinned herself that morning after training all the previous night in the tribe's native combat form.

...Half the men in her tribe are beaten and bruised for some reason... Almost as if they just spend the entire last night getting their asses kicked by her.

...Said amazon Princess also decides to join the Female knights to go beat the everliving stuffing out of the main villains of the story. And she winds up being the one with the highest Physical stats, over and beyond that of any men who joined the group.

...

Now... This sounds like a game I'd be interested in... and that Amazon Princess would be a girl I'd like to date... Right after she's done kicking my ass, and I'm done cleaning my blood off her shoes.

That's an awesome story, becaue if you reversed the genders back, the tribal 'prince' becomes a woman- hating monster who specifically beats up those not of his gender!

See, you're still using men as measures of strength, as a culturally recognized or percieved yardstick of combat prowess...

But maybe that's what you want, and more power to you.

You clearly want to be beaten up by women.

Which is fine.

...

Make this game!

Oh, so many people who think themselves experts on this subject claiming that this is a non-issue. How cute!

Anyway, if the industry is unwilling to change its perspective on women it would be only fair to objectify men in the same way, even though it's probably not viable for the teenage market.

I think I might actually enjoy that.

image

Hmm...

Also, the argument "there are more important issues" is not only completely subjective, it's also pathetic.

ZexionSephiroth:
Hmm...

As with every time the issue of gender representation in anything comes up, my first reaction is to judge what I like in Women, and what I'd like to see in their representation. And a Slight variant of the same questions for men that accounts for the fact I'm not attracted to them.

And now... Considering men aren't objectified, but unfairly idealized, I've now got to think up a slightly modified approach...

And what better way to put it than in a hypothetical narrative?

A prince has been kidnapped and is being used as a bartering chip, and three female knights decided to go on the quest to rescue him... For the Big Money Reward, because they actually hate the guy.

They go there, kick ass, and then reach the guy, who seems to be expecting them to give him a kiss, but instead they just drag him back to the castle over their shoulder and give him to the King, who promptly locks the prince away to be used later as a bargaining chip to a an Amazon Tribe's Princess, who agrees to marry the stupid git if it will unite thier counties.

Later, the Prince is mysteriously Assassinated after the wedding. Nobody cares, and nobody is surprised. And from then on, the united country is ruled by the Amazon Princess, who rules kindly, justly, but also firmly against anyone who dare upset the peace.

...

Now THAT is how you Objectify Men!

...

Meanwhile, having less objectified and more idealized women would be like having the female knights have A or B cup breasts and Traverse their way across entire continents in full armor/clothing, fighting creatures many times their size. And the Amazon Princess almost gets confused for a boy underneath the bundle of furs she wears... Which she skinned herself that morning after training all the previous night in the tribe's native combat form.

...Half the men in her tribe are beaten and bruised for some reason... Almost as if they just spend the entire last night getting their asses kicked by her.

...Said amazon Princess also decides to join the Female knights to go beat the everliving stuffing out of the main villains of the story. And she winds up being the one with the highest Physical stats, over and beyond that of any men who joined the group.

...

Now... This sounds like a game I'd be interested in... and that Amazon Princess would be a girl I'd like to date... Right after she's done kicking my ass, and I'm done cleaning my blood off her shoes.

Now I like the idea, but I would suggest some modifications:

1. The prince should basically be wearing a banana hammock and not much else most of the time, save for some tanning oil and lucious silk sheets, accentuating his features.

And every male knight that joins them should wear a codpiece and maybe some decorative, completely useless pieces of armor strapped to their muscular bodies with leather-straps.

And if there are any mages, they should have to cast magic by dry humping their staffs. The better the choreography, the stronger the spell

Of course, we need a grizzled, battle-worn knight who has a young guy fall hopelessly in love with her, because romance, but the knight is actually in a relationship with a fellow female knight or something, creating a love-triangle.
The young guy is then killed by the most evilest evil villain ever and she decides, that though she never loved him, his death must be avenged and berserks up for the last fight against evil-mc-evil-incubus, a male seductor who tries to swoon them using his charm and perfect looks but who gets his pretty face caved in by Grizzly Knight's chainmail glove and swiftly curbstomped by her.

The end.

Thank fuck for Jim Sterling. Another great Jimquisition episode. Hooray!

Aardvaarkman:

the December King:
While I suppose no one specified 'white' males just now, in this video, at this time, in this particular instance (I'll just trust that you scoured the clip to be sure, as that's most likely, or you wouldn't have mentioned it!), it does seem to be the demographic that is most often under this kind of scrutiny.

The video we're discussing is about the representation of gender/sex. It doesn't make any sense to assume that it is about white males specifically. Black people, Asian people, Indian people, in fact people of any race can be just as sexist as white people. In fact, women can be just as sexist as men, even against other women.

It really seems like you're projecting here, if you think that white males are being specifically targeted.

Jeez, man, settle down and stop trying to pick this apart! 'white male demo' is a thing, and I'll concede that it might not necessarily apply here. I guess it might be projection, but doubt it- it's more like my opinion, that it's the demo under fire here.

Back on topic, though:

I don't like the fact that women are objectified in games, certainly.

I also don't want to play as a woman character in my action/adventure escapism.

But I certainly don't want to hinder others from playing female heroes, either! That's why games like Skyrim and Saint's Row appeal to me because of choices. Now, if it's to be a more specific story arc that NEEDS to have a gender-specific issue addressed, well, that I would address on a case by case basis.

Very interesting video.
Still, this whole "objectification in fictional media" still doesn't sit right with me.
I mean, they're fictional characters, objects, is there anything wrong with objectifying objects?

I realise it's Jim's style to be inflammatory and sensational, and it serves him (and this video) well. I just wish the subsequent discussion was a little more grounded, from both of the main parties in the debate.

Aardvaarkman:

Subscriptism:

You're asking that question to someone on the internet? I'm not out to change the world, I can't make a difference.

Well, you were the one who claimed this wasn't worthy of attention because there are bigger problems to deal with. If it doesn't matter because it's "only the internet," then why post that in the first place?

The general laziness of publishers in adopting a one size fits all solution to development as recently discussed in a Jimquisition, and of course DRM. These issues cause real tangible harm.

What tangible harm do these things cause, and why are they more important issues that how women are represented in gaming? Seems to me that a lot more harm can result from a popular medium using sexist imagery than from dubious copy-protection measures.

DRM means you might not be able to play a game (oh, the humanity!). The depiction of people in popular media can result in self-harm, psychological issues, poor self-esteem, etc.

Point One: I never said it didn't matter.

Point Two: The issues I mentioned are slowly killing the notion quality in the industry and the fact that you no longer own what you pay for, you just have a license to use it. I'm going to be frank and say that if someone is self-harming and having psychological issues over the way women are depicted in video games then they need a lesson about reality and fiction and what people are like in the real world. You don't see me upset that I'm not two metres tall with pecs of steel, because I know it's a total fantasy an idealisation.

likalaruku:
It took me a very very long time to learn to accept & live with the way women are portrayed in comic books & games & anime. Now I can play Mortal Kombat 2011, feel a bit of breast envy, & simultaneously resent how none of the men are remotely attractive & pity them for having to wear so much clothing.

So now that I've learned to live with & even love these asskicking strippers, I just want to objectify men equally. I absolutely agree that male characters are made to appeal to straight men, because even though I can't speak for all women, I can tell you that this woman has never seen an attractive male character in a non asian game.

But there are some changes I'd like to see on the women's side. I want the woman to save the men. I want the woman to hit on the men, more bitchy snarky tsunderes, more whip-cracking dominatrixes, more tomboys who aren't interested in romance, more female villains. As for Eastern games/anime/manga...Their women have become annoyingly weak, have annoyingly childish voices, & need to wear pants, even if they're skin-tight....It wasn't that way in the 80s, at least not in Japan.

The last time that I entertained the idea that the female cast of Mortal Kombat could be considered attractive was way back when during the 16-bit era. Most men do consider amazonian manshees with fake breast implants to be attractive, irregardless of how little their stripper-ninja costumes leave to the imagination.

The stripper-ninja costumes themselves on the other hand. Rowr.

Spearmaster:

Imp Emissary:

Spearmaster:
snip

I agree with you, I do wish people did not feel so bad or were less uncomfortable with games but sadly I believe it is impossible to make the perfect game that nobody will have a problem with...well maybe tetris. Maybe rather than trying to white wash every game we need to split games into even more diverse genres and try to see that each genre has an equal representation. This is very hard with AAA titles because publishers only make a game AAA to try and drive sales for that title as high as they can go and that seems to involve heavy pandering to the teenage male heterosexual demographic.
Honestly I blame Developers/Publishers not so much for poor female or no female character design but for chasing the AAA game unicorn around and only having 1-2 AAA games every 1-2 years when they could be making several more diverse games where more diverse groups could be represented. When a company's IP catalog consists of 2-4 AAA IPs it severely lessens the chances that any of those games will pander to anything but their core demographic. I figure that a company with 5-10 more diverse non AAA IPs would see bigger profits and a broader more diverse fan base and could even see some gamers intermingling between IPs that they normally wouldn't play.

That's another problem Jim also talked about. We have mostly two types of games. AAA games and indie games(A games). But we have very few middle ground. Some AA games if you will. If they would do a few more games that had a budget bigger than an indie game but less than a AAA game they would risk less(so they could try some new things maybe), make more if it gets popular, and they could get more customers because they could price the games more than indie but less than AAA games.

But that won't happen until they stop "chasing the AAA game unicorn". :/ Why do unicorns run from us gamers anyway?


>_> Oh....right....

Jim, you and Yahtzee are the only reason I visit this otherwise irrelevant and boring website. But for God's sake, please drop this subject already. I'm not saying don't discuss it, but you're running it into the ground. Week after week I come here to hear your great opinions on what's occurring in the industry, but watching the same video on the same topic for the fifth time is getting more than I can bear.

I get it that women are objectified in this industry as they are in every other industry. I get it that it isn't entirely right. I get it that it's a marketing tool to attract a certain target audience. I. get. It. Everyone gets it, and the reason they don't want to talk about it anymore is because they're utterly sick of hearing it. It's a one note argument which has one ending that cannot be changed due to a large amount of reasons. Reasons that I don't need to discuss here because of how blatantly obvious there are.

Females in video games aren't all bad. They aren't mostly bad either. If you magnify a spiders face 100 times, of course it's going to look more horrifying than it is normally. There are plenty of women in video games that are 'normal'. They exist not because developers were brave, but because it's what they wanted. That's it. That's all there is to it. Stop focusing on the negative to the point the positives don't seem to exist.

Fucking stop it. Grow the fuck up.

So Jim literally converted me on the spot.

I would like to make the argument that men are being objectified in games... but I can't.

This is a bit of a problem for me, because (and this is where I may get shouted at) I like objectifying women. I like hot women with no discernible reason for existing other than to be something I can enjoy looking at. Sometimes I don't want to have deep relations or conversations. I just want what is on the box.
It should be pointed out here that I said "sometimes". Other times I like the depth a good female character can provide.

I think this is also why there is such a blowback when, we try to bring the medium forward. The resistance to many of these discussions amount to, I think, that many men don't want to lose their outlet for some drives that modern society doesn't really allow. These drives are not restricted to the darker ones of dominance and control but also things like the drive to protect and provide for their women.

It is easy to play to that side of me. The part that just wants something easily digested I mean. Give me a girl to save or a hot partner to run around with and we are good. Some skimpy clothes, some well-formed curves and a pretty face.

And frankly I think there should be room for that in any media. the biggest stumbling block to it however is that the objectification of women as opposed to men is absurdly weighted against women. I think you will be hard pressed to find ANY male character who in some way represented a reward or something to be pursued, to either control or posses. And so I suppose this is where my wishes get into the wringer for as long as the is not equality in objectification, I can not get my simple pleasures without being seen as some sort of neanderthal.

So I suppose where I am going is to suggest we get more objectification men in gaming. My biggest problem with this is that I have no idea how to objectify men. I also think this is a problem many developers run into. I hope women could give some ideas.

Now I would like to move on to the whole "female protagonists can't be ugly" thing. It is worth noting here that this is not just a gaming thing but are more broad societal thing. It happens in movies and books as well. You have it is the world of music too (although to a lesser extent). In these other media seeing an ugly or unattractive female lead is just as unlikely as it is in games. I am not saying that this is a good thing or a bad thing (frankly I don't have a clue on that) but I am just saying it is not a trend unique to games.
Another point to make on this is that this is actually also true about male protagonists. Your average male protagonist is well built, physically fit, has a chiselled jaw and are more often than not dark. In women we have similar traits (though based on physical beauty as it pertains to females) well built, physically fit, high cheekbones and soft jawline.
There are 2 distinct differences between the 2 ways of portraying beauty. Firstly men are allowed to show age. Wrinkles and lines are fine in a man and he is even allowed to look a little scruffy (5 o'clock shadow), while females are not. The other is that the spectrum of different beautiful characteristics is significantly higher for women than for men. Attractive male protagonists are almost universally similar while females (lead or supporting) span a wide gamut of different looks (I will here leave the door open on the possibility that women are just by nature more beautiful than men). To give example: Lets take Marcus Phoenix, Jim Raynor and Nathan Drake. All these fellows are dark haired, have strong chins (less evident for Jim), chiselled jawlines, piercing eyes and physically fit. They are also all kinda scruffy and show a certain "men of action"-air. Their differences are pretty much entirely in body-type with both Marcus and Jim sporting "space marine" proportions and Nathan being more in line with normal men. Now lets look at females. Lets take: Lara Croft (the new one), Kerrigan, Nova and Nilin (remember me). Now first of they all have different haircolor and style (well one might say that the ponytail is very prevalent among them). They are all fit but as for body-type we got 4 to choose from. We got Lara who is the more normal everyday body-type, Nihil sports a very stylised elongated body-type, Kerrigan has an athletic body-type (skinny) while Nova is somewhat more voluptuous. Most (if not all) of them sport a pouty mouth but beyond that their faces sport a lot of difference in both jawline, cheekbone, eyeshape and general air.
In many ways it seems to me that there might be something to the thought that we are allowed to see the full spectrum of female beauty while male beauty has been boiled down to a filling but bland soup.

On the other hand I might also just have written for far too long.

JakobBloch:
Summed up in the post above...

Well said, JakoBloch.

I would love to see women gamers (aaah, hell, players in general, be they women or men) given the same chance to objectify men in a game as what we have now- be the hero, save the dude, fight the bad guys, etc. with some great female protagonists.

Yo Jim, I heard you said women are being objectified. I also noticed the word you were looking for was "sexualized".

Take bikini armor MMORPG: the female characters are exactly the same as male ones except more sexualized. They have the same amount of agency, power, whatever, just with more skin. That's not objectification that's sexualization. And if people think that's objectification than they have sick twisted minds and should be kept off the streets during the summer because they will see a lot of "objects" to be used.

Than come single player games. Yes female characters usually have less agency. But not because they're female, because they're secondary characters and the protagonists are usually males. Lara croft has a lot of agency despite being a woman, guess why? It's because she's the protagonist. Comparing the level of agency of a protagonist with the one of secondary characters is as stupid as it can get (hi there Anita). I could give you an insane list of male characters who weren't protagonists who were merely goals to obtain as well.

What, who made these wild accusations of Jim being "smug", or "to full of himself"? Obviously, he can't be, he's Jim and we all should thank god for him! I say brand the heretics talking against him, punish them for their blasphemy!

On Topic: I have to say, sometimes i kinda have mixed feelings about it. Since i am out of school (noone wants to talk about this in school obviously ;) i had many discussions about "sexism" (which i consider objectification of sexes a part of) as a broad topic/ the broad topic it is. And honestly, while i like to "ignite" talking about sexism and why and how not only sexes should be treated more equal, but that the awareness about diversity in genders should be increased, sometimes i get tired of the topic myself. That's because there's so much talk, so much discussion, but the effects seem to come so slow, creeping almost and then sometimes i have to "defend" myself against people who accuse me of being sexist, for example through the language i use (english is less effected by these problems compared to my native language, but imagine someone tells you "human" would be a sexist term, because it has "man" in it - while i understand the critisim and realize where it comes from, i find it utterly unnecessary to start discussions about something like this within a supporting community, while there's still so much to do in the "big picture").

That's why i can kinda understand when people get tired of the topic "in general". But honestly, "sexism" was a problem over 100 years ago, was a problem 2 years ago, when Jimquisition started to run on the escapist and still is a problem today. Why is it a problem? Well, despite the whole "gender-equality" issues and yadidadida (easiest example to look at is in close to every commercial, where women are targeted for cleaning products, fancy clothes and whatnot, while men appearently have to have expensive cars and own everything that underlines their masculanity and status), it constricts so much of the possibilities within the game-industry, to make a broader range of "better" games! It isn't even about "undoing" God of War, or Dead or Alive Beach-something (weeell... nah, not gonna stress this further ;), but about all those games that break with the standarts and create something "original" and "deep" (and honestly, things like God of War are neither original nor deep in story or emotional content). Obviously, there are already some games with awesome female leads who aren't reduced to their sexual appearance and not objectified, but make for intelligently created protagonists (one of the most known examples is "Beyond Good and Evil", i also like "Primal" for that matter, but others may come up with something better). But why do some developers still have to fight to create something like "Remember me"? Why are there so few games, where the protagonist isn't idealized, as described by Jim? Recently i've searched explicitly for games that won't "empower" the player much, to focus on more relatable characters and compelling stories and some of those are pure gaming-gold to me! Why aren't there more games like that?
Again, sure it is nice to go all "Duke Nukem" or "Kratos" in a game, that's what it is about, the possibility to feel like someone different for some time and to experience and explore the extraordinary. But playing something like "Papo & Yo", "The Walking Dead", "Lone Survivor" or others, to experience many different things that way, like emphasis for unusual disempowerment, emotional struggle, the general weirdness of the human mind and so on and so forth can be just as much about "gaming".

I think that's part of the reason why every gamer should care and support any discussions and actions considering the matter, to encourage "improvment"/ diversity within the industry and obviously part of the reason why the Jimquisition still finds points to clearify about sexism in gaming. And as that, this episode is just as well done and has a solid argument as ever.
Probably the point is already clear to many who watched all the other episodes which are part of the sexism discussion, but why not stir it up again, while it is as important as ever?!
... and i think this still applies.

Moonlight Butterfly:

CrossLOPER:

Moonlight Butterfly:
Thanks Jim. Something to link when people bring this tired and completely false argument up. I've actually had people tell me I should find Kratos sexy and if I don't I must be doing it wrong.

No one actually told you this.

Omg I didn't realise you have been with me ALL OF MY LIFE. holy shit.

Do you have cameras in my room?!?!

No one ever walked up to you, pointed to Kratos and explicitly commanded you to "LIKE THAT".

CrossLOPER:

Moonlight Butterfly:

CrossLOPER:

No one actually told you this.

Omg I didn't realise you have been with me ALL OF MY LIFE. holy shit.

Do you have cameras in my room?!?!

No one ever walked up to you, pointed to Kratos and explicitly commanded you to "LIKE THAT".

There are forums where people on the internet can talk to each other and say that kind of stuff. Y'know, like the place you're in right now? On the internet?

Sepko:

There are forums where people on the internet can talk to each other and say that kind of stuff. Y'know, like the place you're in right now? On the internet?

I've been told a lot of things on the internet. Take a guess at how many of those things have profoundly affected my life.

CrossLOPER:

Sepko:

There are forums where people on the internet can talk to each other and say that kind of stuff. Y'know, like the place you're in right now? On the internet?

I've been told a lot of things on the internet. Take a guess at how many of those things have profoundly affected my life.

And that has to do with anything how...?

generals3:
Take bikini armor MMORPG: the female characters are exactly the same as male ones except more sexualized. They have the same amount of agency, power, whatever, just with more skin. That's not objectification that's sexualization.

It's both actually. You make the women look busty to sexualise them, and only to sexualise them cuz really, that's all they're good for, to look pretty. Seeing as they're only designed that way for the sexiness, we've degraded them as people down to sex objects, hence the objectification.

generals3:
Than come single player games. Yes female characters usually have less agency. But not because they're female, because they're secondary characters and the protagonists are usually males. Lara croft has a lot of agency despite being a woman, guess why? It's because she's the protagonist. Comparing the level of agency of a protagonist with the one of secondary characters is as stupid as it can get (hi there Anita). I could give you an insane list of male characters who weren't protagonists who were merely goals to obtain as well.

I don't know where you're going with this, Jim was talking about how rarely it was that women had a leading role in games, and in a generally respectful way, and if they were in the game at all in some significant way. And if they were significant, they're usually the goal by which to motivate the player as the male protag to proceed, cuz that's all the womenfolk are good for apparently.
You should enlighten us on this male-secondary-characters-as-goals list, and then cut out all those who're in games that aren't sold to the west (cuz western games and games sold in the west are what Jim is talking about) and then cut out those who weren't designed specifically for the ladies (as sexualisation and objection is the topic of this episode)

Go.

Sepko:

CrossLOPER:

Sepko:

There are forums where people on the internet can talk to each other and say that kind of stuff. Y'know, like the place you're in right now? On the internet?

I've been told a lot of things on the internet. Take a guess at how many of those things have profoundly affected my life.

And that has to do with anything how...?

It's the internet. Nothing anyone says on this topic should be taken with much weight. If someone on the internet tells you that you should like something, for right or wrong, you are free to completely ignore them. To suggest that you can in any way be compelled by a half-hearted argument constructed by fanboi apologists on an internet forum is laughable.

Sepko:

It's both actually. You make the women look busty to sexualise them, and only to sexualise them cuz really, that's all they're good for, to look pretty.

OK, what is the standard cup size that game designers should be going for?

Sepko:

generals3:
Take bikini armor MMORPG: the female characters are exactly the same as male ones except more sexualized. They have the same amount of agency, power, whatever, just with more skin. That's not objectification that's sexualization.

It's both actually. You make the women look busty to sexualise them, and only to sexualise them cuz really, that's all they're good for, to look pretty. Seeing as they're only designed that way for the sexiness, we've degraded them as people down to sex objects, hence the objectification.

No man. That makes no sense at all and is just a plainly twisted view on things. Developers put a lot of time in the design of their characters. Both males and females and they try to make them aesthetically pleasing to their audience. If their audience happens to prefer sexualized aesthetics for the female characters that's what the devs will do. On that aspect both male and female characters are objectified equally. One could also say that men are being degraded to muscled machines in said games than. But these kind of reductionist views make little sense.

I don't know where you're going with this, Jim was talking about how rarely it was that women had a leading role in games, and in a generally respectful way, and if they were in the game at all in some significant way. And if they were significant, they're usually the goal by which to motivate the player as the male protag to proceed, cuz that's all the womenfolk are good for apparently.
You should enlighten us on this male-secondary-characters-as-goals list, and then cut out all those who're in games that aren't sold to the west (cuz western games and games sold in the west are what Jim is talking about) and then cut out those who weren't designed specifically for the ladies (as sexualisation and objection is the topic of this episode)

Go.

The fact women have few leading roles would be irrelevant to the objectification case. You can't have every single group being given a leading role in a single game. Otherwise we could go on and say black people or muslims (or almost any type of minority in the western world) are being objectified as well.

And sure i can give you a list: The president in MGS2 was a goal to obtain. His role was merely to be captured and saved, nothing more. In Red Alert 2 Romanov was merely a puppet of Yuri with no agency whatsoever, just a little dog mentally controlled by the bad guy. And i think i've saved quite a buttload of helpless dudes who had no agency in WoW.

agree sort of. In gaming maybe it's not so much I think? I'm not sure. Truthfully I don't know that many women that play games but I will say this. I get really tired of feeling insecure about my body because I don't look like Ryan Reynolds or Ryan Gosling or Channing Tatum. So Yeah I don't know about gaming but movies seem really bad about it on both sides.

CrossLOPER:

Sepko:

It's both actually. You make the women look busty to sexualise them, and only to sexualise them cuz really, that's all they're good for, to look pretty.

OK, what is the standard cup size that game designers should be going for?

Something sensible and not gravity-defying? And if you really have to ask "what's sensible?"...ugh

CrossLOPER:

I've been told a lot of things on the internet. Take a guess at how many of those things have profoundly affected my life.

CrossLOPER:
It's the internet. Nothing anyone says on this topic should be taken with much weight. If someone on the internet tells you that you should like something, for right or wrong, you are free to completely ignore them. To suggest that you can in any way be compelled by a half-hearted argument constructed by fanboi apologists on an internet forum is laughable.

So this is the original quote that prompted this:

Moonlight Butterfly:
Thanks Jim. Something to link when people bring this tired and completely false argument up. I've actually had people tell me I should find Kratos sexy and if I don't I must be doing it wrong.

I'm seeing nothing in these three sentences that implies that she's been "compelled" or "profoundly affected", just that she's annoyed by these dumb fanboy arguments and now she has a quick shortcut to momentarily end her annoyance.

generals3:
No man. That makes no sense at all and is just a plainly twisted view on things. Developers put a lot of time in the design of their characters. Both males and females and they try to make them aesthetically pleasing to their audience. If their audience happens to prefer sexualized aesthetics for the female characters that's what the devs will do. On that aspect both male and female characters are objectified equally. One could also say that men are being degraded to muscled machines in said games than. But these kind of reductionist views make little sense.

It may be "twisted" but that's the way it is.
Also you should probably watch the video again, if you did at all, because everything in that thing you call an argument was pretty much destroyed by Jim.

generals3:

Sepko:
I don't know where you're going with this, Jim was talking about how rarely it was that women had a leading role in games, and in a generally respectful way, and if they were in the game at all in some significant way. And if they were significant, they're usually the goal by which to motivate the player as the male protag to proceed, cuz that's all the womenfolk are good for apparently.
You should enlighten us on this male-secondary-characters-as-goals list, and then cut out all those who're in games that aren't sold to the west (cuz western games and games sold in the west are what Jim is talking about) and then cut out those who weren't designed specifically for the ladies (as sexualisation and objection is the topic of this episode)

Go.

The fact women have few leading roles would be irrelevant to the objectification case. You can't have every single group being given a leading role in a single game. Otherwise we could go on and say black people or muslims (or almost any type of minority in the western world) are being objectified as well.

And sure i can give you a list: The president in MGS2 was a goal to obtain. His role was merely to be captured and saved, nothing more. In Red Alert 2 Romanov was merely a puppet of Yuri with no agency whatsoever, just a little dog mentally controlled by the bad guy. And i think i've saved quite a buttload of helpless dudes who had no agency in WoW.

We're not talking about cultural diversity we're talking about gender diversity, there's a difference. Also, women aren't a minority, they're half the human race. Christ.
And that's one heck of a list, now watch me crumble it down as pretty much none of them were created with the female gaze in mind.
Wanna know how many female characters there are that're in games that've been sold in the west who're all secondary, useless, designed to specifically look sexy and merely goals for the male protagonist? Or can you figure that out for yourself?

Smeatza:
Very interesting video.
Still, this whole "objectification in fictional media" still doesn't sit right with me.
I mean, they're fictional characters, objects, is there anything wrong with objectifying objects?

I genuinely found this quote disturbing. Fictional characters are still representations of people. Attitudes towards fictional characters can influence peoples perspectives in real life. Or offer you an idea of their attitudes towards real people.

Great video as usual. Just one little nitpick.

Half of the gaming audience is women, but that's counting iPhone games, TV games, Facebook games and all their ilk. If it's even slightly interactive, it's counted as a game.

The audience of Triple A games though is still predominately male, so I don't see the problem in these games being made for men.

TAdamson:

Spearmaster:
snip

These are actually interesting points.

1st point: I really don't think the exclusion argument works because
1-Nobody is being excluded from buying or playing anything.
2-Nobody is being actively excluded, game creators/developers are not creating games with a "we don't want women to play this game" mind set.
3-Im pretty sure sales demographics are what drives the pandering of AAA titles.
4-These types of game are not "the only thing provided" but there are very very few other options.

It's not active exclusion though. Women aren't actively excluded from stip clubs either but they don't generally (Not always but most of the time) find them places they want to be.

Now that's an extreme example. But its similar to the passive exclusion that is created by many videogames that results from creating an environment that many women find distasteful.

I had a girlfriend who enjoyed the Soul Calibur series. This is admittedly a pretty sexualised series but at least the were a varied set of female body types. She stopped playing around SC4 because the boobage/upskirting became so blatant that it made her uncomfortable.

Yes the men in that game are similarly ridiculously apportioned but they (except for Voldo) aren't constantly displaying it in a sexualized manner. Imagine if all the male characters were sexualized in way that appealed to homosexual men. The hetero-normative outcry would be absurd.

2nd point: I did not use the term entitled to dismiss an opinion, is not the point of all these discussions to say that people are or should be entitled to stronger female characters? If they feel they are not entitled then there is no problem. If someone says someone should provide them with something then that is entitlement. "They need to provide us with better female characters" = "We are entitled to better female characters" There is nothing wrong with that IMO but economics will trump it every time, so until it is financially beneficial for a private company to provide it, its probably not gonna happen. I do feel there is a huge untapped market there for the right company that knows what they are doing.

I still think that 'entitlement' is a weasely and inappropriate word. 'Want' and 'desire' are better descriptors. Properly 'entitlement' is suggestive of being either deserving or rights or ownership. You have a right to your property or a fair trial. You do not have a right to a free lunch.

Nobody serious is suggesting that we all have the right to dictate the content of commercial or artistic works. Rather that we would like to see more varied examples, especially in regards to female characters. One way of making that more likely is by talking about it.

Unfortunately there is the problem that some in the bro-gaming community (Not you per se but some) see this a threat to the boys club and will try to hose down any discussion of it by calling 'entitlement', dredging up the false comparison of how men and women are depicted, or paleoconservative arguments along the lines of: "it's always been like this so it shouldn't change"

This is frustrating to people who would like to see the medium mature and gain depth. Perhaps move away from the 80s like excess of dumb plots, muscle men and big tits that pervades most of gaming. Not to say that all that should disappear completely but

3rd point: Even if artistic design is being trampled over as you say it is, does that give justification to trample it even further? If a developer/publisher tells an artist to change a character design its probably more contractual than anything, it all depends on who has creative control of an intellectual property. The only way for a consumer to have any say is through free market economics and I fully support that.

Well the question here is the touchy one on whether Triple-AAA games are "Art" or whether they are a commercial product. Like movies there are some games that are 'art' and there are games that contain art but if they were truly art then the amount of focus testing that goes into making big budget titles would not occur and the developer of Remember Me wouldn't be being told to change the gender of the protagonist.

So creating something that someone likes is passive exclusion? Because of the fact that someone else might not "like" it? If that is the case I would like to create a list things I'm passively excluded from but I don't want to crash the forum listing it all.
This idea of passive exclusion also seems to say that people are excluding them selves based on personal taste, not being passively excluded by a game. We usually call this personal choice not passive exclusion.

If using the word entitlement is weasely and inappropriate what can be said for the term passive exclusion? As long as nobody claims a right or privilege to be provided with changes to games ill stop using the term entitled but only if people don't use a ridiculous term like passively excluded.

**Edit**

Bashfluff:

Aardvaarkman:

Spearmaster:
2nd point: I did not use the term entitled to dismiss an opinion, is not the point of all these discussions to say that people are or should be entitled to stronger female characters? If they feel they are not entitled then there is no problem. If someone says someone should provide them with something then that is entitlement.

No, that is not the case.

I don't recall anybody saying that they are entitled to stronger female characters. People have said that they would like this, but that is not the same as feeling entitled. For example: I might desire a supermodel girlfriend, but by no means does that mean I feel that a supermodel is obligated to be my girlfriend.

If they're not, they should be. We should demand better from our female characters and how they're treated, because they deserve better, and so do we.

Or there is stuff like this

Genocidicles:
Great video as usual. Just one little nitpick.

Half of the gaming audience is women, but that's counting iPhone games, TV games, Facebook games and all their ilk. If it's even slightly interactive, it's counted as a game.

The audience of Triple A games though is still predominately male, so I don't see the problem in these games being made for men.

God forbid we'd allow more of the women-folk to be part of the Triple-A audience by at least looking like we're more inclusive :\

Sepko:

It may be "twisted" but that's the way it is.
Also you should probably watch the video again, if you did at all, because everything in that thing you call an argument was pretty much destroyed by Jim.

I have seen it and i think i know what you're thinking of. However I would urge you to spare yourself the embarrassment of bringing it up. But if you want go ahead and tell me how Jim "destroyed" that argument. Tell me how the fact that characters with the exact same amount of agency and overall awesomeness are suddenly merely objects because they show more skin. (And i hope that by phrasing it the way i did made a lightbulb go on in your head telling you why you shouldn't quote Jim as an attempt to "destroy" the argument)

generals3:

We're not talking about cultural diversity we're talking about gender diversity, there's a difference. Also, women aren't a minority, they're half the human race. Christ.
And that's one heck of a list, now watch me crumble it down as pretty much none of them were created with the female gaze in mind.
Wanna know how many female characters there are that're in games that've been sold in the west who're all secondary, useless, designed to specifically look sexy and merely goals for the male protagonist? Or can you figure that out for yourself?

The list isn't that long because i didn't for instance bring up all the examples from the entire MGS saga and because being primarily a RTS, Civ, and multiplayer FPS gamer i don't have such a wide array of RPG's and thus can only give a limited set of examples. However if even with my limited gaming library i can give you quite a few examples imagine how many a hardcore RPG gamer could give you.

And i've never said women are a minority. That's just you trying to put words in my mouths. However they are a minority costumer base for the games we're discussing. As such in the eyes of developers when it comes to pleasing them they're on the same footing.

Sepko:

Genocidicles:
Great video as usual. Just one little nitpick.

Half of the gaming audience is women, but that's counting iPhone games, TV games, Facebook games and all their ilk. If it's even slightly interactive, it's counted as a game.

The audience of Triple A games though is still predominately male, so I don't see the problem in these games being made for men.

God forbid we'd allow more of the women-folk to be part of the Triple-A audience by at least looking like we're more inclusive :\

God forbid that we don't pressure developers to take big business risks through guilt tactics.

Yesterday I started writing a post about my opinion. But I couldn't find the words to say what I thought.

Instead I'm going to make a request.

Can someone show me an image of a man that's objectified that women find appealing? I'm curious. Because I don't think I can image it. In less the man is effeminate.

-

Mods are probably the best way to help with the issue. However, it does mean if you want fairness you need a PC and a game with mod support. And even then, the majority of exciting mods will be making women sexy and not males (see nexus).

It also annoys me when modders who produce sexy male mods say I will never do a female version as there's too many female mods already. Fair enough. There are a lot. Just it makes you a mirror of the problem by out-right refusing. You can say that it's not in your interest. But don't say never. Just makes you look like a hypocrite.

generals3:

Sepko:

It may be "twisted" but that's the way it is.
Also you should probably watch the video again, if you did at all, because everything in that thing you call an argument was pretty much destroyed by Jim.

I have seen it and i think i know what you're thinking of. However I would urge you to spare yourself the embarrassment of bringing it up. But if you want go ahead and tell me how Jim "destroyed" that argument. Tell me how the fact that characters with the exact same amount of agency and overall awesomeness are suddenly merely objects because they show more skin. (And i hope that me phrasing it the way i did made a lightbulb go on in your head telling you why you shouldn't quote Jim as an attempt to "destroy" the argument)

You're basing your argument on the delusion that male and female characters are somehow "equally objectified" when they're not. Ever. In the slightest. They're not even in the same category as each other.
Women characters are designed for males mostly for the sex appeal for other males. Any interesting personality traits or helpfulness to the overall plot is pushed aside so that they can be slapped on the box art to sell more copies of the game.
Men, on the other hand; with your argument you're saying that men are designed that way because designers think male gamers will think they're sexy. This isn't the case. At all. They create the male characters as a power fantasy or as an idealised version of the human male; big, gruff, handsome and all that jazz.
Same with women, they're ideally designed by male designers for male gamers.

generals3:
The list isn't that long because i didn't for instance bring up all the examples from the entire MGS saga and because being primarily a RTS, Civ, and multiplayer FPS gamer i don't have such a wide array of RPG's and thus can only give a limited set of examples. However if even with my limited gaming library i can give you quite a few examples imagine how many a hardcore RPG gamer could give you.

And i've never said women are a minority. That's just you trying to put words in my mouths. However they are a minority costumer base for the games we're discussing. As such in the eyes of developers when it comes to pleasing them they're on the same footing.

First, if you're a limited-genre gamer you shouldn't imply yourself to be the be-all-end-all argument against the objectification of women in the entire western gaming industry.

Second, your last two sentences make absolutely no sense. Who are "them" and what are they on the "same footing" as?

generals3:
God forbid that we don't pressure developers to take big business risks through guilt tactics.

Wanting to be more inclusive to people is now a guilt tactic? Really?

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