Game Theory: The Strategy of Sex Appeal in Dead or Alive

The Strategy of Sex Appeal in Dead or Alive

Sex sells...and apparently PWNs! Earlier this year, the community around the Dead or Alive franchise of fighting games put out a "soft ban" on some of the racier costumes available for characters in the game. Dead or Alive is a franchise KNOWN for sexy women in...questionable attire...but in an effort o move away from that label and get people to focus more on the gameplay, sexy costumes were OUT. Except...that may have been the wrong decision as sexy costumes are a CORE gameplay element. Let me explain.

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I saw this episode back on Youtube when it first came out. Banning costumes seems like a silly thing to do regardless. DoA is known for having sexy ladies - if you're going to play the game, you're going to have to accept this. Costumes or no.

Paragon Fury:
I saw this episode back on Youtube when it first came out. Banning costumes seems like a silly thing to do regardless. DoA is known for having sexy ladies - if you're going to play the game, you're going to have to accept this. Costumes or no.

I don't know why we are even having this discussion I mean is Dead or Alive even relevent in gaming today? I mean how big of an impact did the DOA series offer to gaming in general or at least within in the fighting game genre?

And don't get me started on the Volleyball games I mean the second game only came out since 2006 I think. Almost 10 years ago and the gaming community moved on and yet people are still bringing it up.

What ever sex appeal the DOA games had is irrelevent in the current scene where The Witcher and Bioware and others pretty much replaced it. The only way the sex appeal of DOA will catch attention is if they make DOA volleyball 3 where its also a dating simulator, where you make a male avatar of your desire and a date one of the girls to the point of sex and actually seeing the goods. (Give that game to CDProjeckt RED and they might make it well written dating and well simulated sex)

So, taking all this at face value, I would assume that gay men should be the ultimate DOA powerhouses.

This reeks of people trying to seem cool to me and thus I despise it. Just be proud of the game you play and sing its praises. Banning costumes won't make them not be in the game and people with evil intentions can always use them as a scapegoat to badmouth the game.

All this really is is some insecure people going "I'M NOT A PERV, REALLY, I JUST LIKE THE GAMEPLAY!".

Yes, we know, only ignorant idiots would think competitive people are competitive cause of the fanservice. Stop giving these idiots so much power over you. Stop caring about perceptions so much.

Dreiko:
This reeks of people trying to seem cool to me and thus I despise it. Just be proud of the game you play and sing its praises. Banning costumes won't make them not be in the game and people with evil intentions can always use them as a scapegoat to badmouth the game.

All this really is is some insecure people going "I'M NOT A PERV, REALLY, I JUST LIKE THE GAMEPLAY!".

Yes, we know, only ignorant idiots would think competitive people are competitive cause of the fanservice. Stop giving these idiots so much power over you. Stop caring about perceptions so much.

And is it really that shameful to enjoy "Fans-Service?" I mean come on we are all Human Beings, we all have our fantasies, our urges, our desires. Its natural.

I find it baffling that gaming is making a big deal out of "Sex in games" especially how accepted it was back in the PS2/Xbox/GC days.

And in this day and age of internet "content" showing fanart images of many games and cartoons.

Samtemdo8:

Paragon Fury:
I saw this episode back on Youtube when it first came out. Banning costumes seems like a silly thing to do regardless. DoA is known for having sexy ladies - if you're going to play the game, you're going to have to accept this. Costumes or no.

I don't know why we are even having this discussion I mean is Dead or Alive even relevent in gaming today? I mean how big of an impact did the DOA series offer to gaming in general or at least within in the fighting game genre?

And don't get me started on the Volleyball games I mean the second game only came out since 2006 I think. Almost 10 years ago and the gaming community moved on and yet people are still bringing it up.

What ever sex appeal the DOA games had is irrelevent in the current scene where The Witcher and Bioware and others pretty much replaced it. The only way the sex appeal of DOA will catch attention is if they make DOA volleyball 3 where its also a dating simulator, where you make a male avatar of your desire and a date one of the girls to the point of sex and actually seeing the goods. (Give that game to CDProjeckt RED and they might make it well written dating and well simulated sex)

Actually as a fighting game enthusiast, I have to say it's with continued lament that I see this game just being written off as "the one with boobs". The Rock/Paper/Scissors combat with Frame advantage, juggles, Desparation moves, and stage damage makes it freaking exciting when done well. Like a sped up version of Virtua Fighter, maybe with 65% amount of the same Depth. Making it more accessible to others and more people willing to get into it.

Not only are the Matches fun, but the commentators do a pretty decent job explaining systems and such.

Matpat half-assing an argument again it seems. XD

The problem isn't what he's saying, but that he doesn't properly follow the implications, or glosses over important points.

Let's look at the delay caused by sexual arousal. Now, you can't nessesarily predict what will arouse any given person, but logic would dictate, if both players are heterosexual males (with similar tastes and arousal responses), the competive advantage of a player using a... sexy costume would be...?
Nothing at all.

Why? because both players see both fighters at all times. Thus, both are having their reaction times messed up by it, not just the opponent of the one using the 'sexy' costume.
That makes the advantage, if any, one of innate biology.
Which player is least affected by arousal?

Worth something to heterosexual female players, or gay men perhaps, but to anyone else, not an actual competitive advantage at all.

then, the second point about biological differences in reaction times between men and women...
It shares the same quality of stupidity as all such arguments ultimately do.

Confusing an average for a universal rule.
Human innate abilities and traits are not homogenous. They have a wide distribution, and range.
The average can certainly tell you something about large groups, but it will mess you up bigtime if you blindly apply the average to individuals.

Take height. Height is a trait with a normal distribution. Actually, if you take sex differences (of adults - children are more similar) into account, it has a binormal distribution. One peak for male, one for female.
The avarages also vary by country, but that's a side issue.

The important point however is, that, while, yes, on average, men are taller than women, it would be completely idiotic to pick a man and a woman at random and state that the man is taller, just because of the averages.
You could have a really tall woman.
Or a really short man.
Or they could both be unusually short, but still have the man be shorter...
Or not.

The average, cannot reliably predict the individual!

And if you're talking a competitive environment, the innate pressures of it will tend to select for the people that are best suited, biologically, for that environment.
Fighting games clearly, would select for players with the best innate reflexes. The averages then, become even less meaningful, because the high-level competition would be defined by the extremes, not the averages.
The most relevant issue in competition would thus be what the upper extremes are, if you're going to compare the sexes.

On a tangential note, if competitions are meant to be tests of skill, and not just innate biology, it seems that we should put people in categories based on their innate biology, as relevant to the nature of the competition.

We seperate men and women for this reason in sports, but is that really the correct approach?
I once read a study on strength differences between men and women. (there are a lot of those)
The results of many studies are predictable. Men are stronger, by some margin, on average, than women, especially in terms of upper body strength.
But, that's random people who may vary for other reasons.
This one study specifically compared top athletes (swimmers in this case).
The gap got smaller for highly trained athletes, but still persisted.

But then, buried in the notes of the study was one further point. They had started to specifically compare mwn and women of similar body types. Similar heights, weights, builds and skill levels.
You know what emerged from that?
The difference in strength between men and women basically became statistically insignificant.

Turns out, after controlling for health, fitness, and training, the supposed male/female difference in strength was illusory.
A factor not of random innate differences, but one almost entirely defined by size.
The reason women seemed weaker was entirely down to them being on average, physically smaller.
No more, no less.

(the implications for competitive sports seem fairly obvious really. In a lot of ways sorting people by bodytype or size or the like would be fairer than sorting them by sex)

So... you know. Be careful on the assumptions you make. Because you may be missing the real reason for something being the case in all the presumptions involved.

He addresses many of those points, CrystalShadow.. come on. He talks about Habitual behaviour. If a given character is your main, it stands to reason that you are already habituated to their sex appeal, which is what gives you the edge over your opponent, unless in a mirror. So it's still relevant.

CrystalShadow:
On a tangential note, if competitions are meant to be tests of skill, and not just innate biology, it seems that we should put people in categories based on their innate biology, as relevant to the nature of the competition.

-snip-

Turns out, after controlling for health, fitness, and training, the supposed male/female difference in strength was illusory.
A factor not of random innate differences, but one almost entirely defined by size.
The reason women seemed weaker was entirely down to them being on average, physically smaller.
No more, no less.

(the implications for competitive sports seem fairly obvious really. In a lot of ways sorting people by bodytype or size or the like would be fairer than sorting them by sex)

I think you are kinda missing the appeal of competitive sport there. People don't watch the olympics to see who's the fastest runner or swimmer within a certain, predefined range of body type. They watch it to see athletes at their peak performance. And that holds true for most sports. Only notable exception I can think of is boxing, which has weight classes, and even then, the heavyweight championship is the most prestigious and arguably popular, representing the perceived peak of human capability in that sport. Judging by that, if you were to sort people by body type for all sports, the result would be similar in viewership interest.

In my eyes, and I'm not sure if that is an unpopular opinion or not but I'll just say it anyway, what dividing sports by gender does is give women a spotlight. Due to the human kind's sexual dimorphism, as you already stated, women are on average smaller then men, and thus on average behind in upper body strength. If sports weren't divided by gender, then surely there would be women who could rise to the top, to the peak athletes of their field, but there would a lot fewer women athletes in total who could claim that kind of fame.

Not to mention, that would still not be fair considering that science has consistently shown that men have a better reaction time then women, something highly relevant in many, many sports.

Davroth:
He addresses many of those points, CrystalShadow.. come on. He talks about Habitual behaviour. If a given character is your main, it stands to reason that you are already habituated to their sex appeal, which is what gives you the edge over your opponent, unless in a mirror. So it's still relevant.

He only adressed habituation in context of mentioning changing outfits frequently, so that your opponent doesn't get used to them. Sure, you can infer things from that point (about the only one he made, in fact. Also worth noting he effectively implied something had a 1750 ms effect negative effect, then in the same video almost seemed to imply that an effective difference of 20 ms was a bigger deal somehow.)

You can read into it what you want, but the fact remains he never actively explained why it would be a benefit to the player. He made exactly one point that could be used to explain that, but doesn't use that point in that way at all.

In fact, he completely neglects to so much as mention the point I'm making here. Which means he is omitting basic fundamental issues with his argument.

It's one thing to make a point and not go into much detail about why a major flaw in your argument isn't really a big deal, but it's another thing entirely to completely omit any mention a gaping hole that fundamentally undermines your argument.

Don't believe me? Watch it again and tell me it even so much as occurred to him to even mention this point, much less address it.

Leaving a gaping wide hole in your argument that if left unanswered will basically undermine your whole point definitely comes across as a half-baked, poorly thought out argument, regardless of if there is something that can fill in the blanks or not.

You apparently chose to fill in the gap with your own reasoning, but that still doesn't really make MatPat's presentation of his case any less flawed.

And since, (comedy elements aside), making an effective (if sometimes absurd) argument is kinda the whole point of the series, it's a little dissapointing to see this kinda thing happen.

CrystalShadow:
On a tangential note, if competitions are meant to be tests of skill, and not just innate biology, it seems that we should put people in categories based on their innate biology, as relevant to the nature of the competition.

-snip-

Turns out, after controlling for health, fitness, and training, the supposed male/female difference in strength was illusory.
A factor not of random innate differences, but one almost entirely defined by size.
The reason women seemed weaker was entirely down to them being on average, physically smaller.
No more, no less.

(the implications for competitive sports seem fairly obvious really. In a lot of ways sorting people by bodytype or size or the like would be fairer than sorting them by sex)

I think you are kinda missing the appeal of competitive sport there. People don't watch the olympics to see who's the fastest runner or swimmer within a certain, predefined range of body type. They watch it to see athletes at their peak performance. And that holds true for most sports. Only notable exception I can think of is boxing, which has weight classes, and even then, the heavyweight championship is the most prestigious and arguably popular, representing the perceived peak of human capability in that sport. Judging by that, if you were to sort people by body type for all sports, the result would be similar in viewership interest.

In my eyes, and I'm not sure if that is an unpopular opinion or not but I'll just say it anyway, what dividing sports by gender does is give women a spotlight. Due to the human kind's sexual dimorphism, as you already stated, women are on average smaller then men, and thus on average behind in upper body strength. If sports weren't divided by gender, then surely there would be women who could rise to the top, to the peak athletes of their field, but there would a lot fewer women athletes in total who could claim that kind of fame.

Not to mention, that would still not be fair considering that science has consistently shown that men have a better reaction time then women, something highly relevant in many, many sports.

~sigh~ Yes, it's a fair point on some level I guess. At least, in terms of why anyone watches sporting events, though maybe less so when it comes to why anyone bothers to compete in them.

Your assertion about reaction times is pretty frustrating considering what I only just explained though. These kinds of studies have a habit of subtle biases that lead to misleading answers, that really don't get at the core of the matter.
(see my entire argument about strength differences, because that has been studied just as often, and still the common opinion seems to be based on misleading causes)

Without knowing both the range of variance, and the fundamental causes of these differences, grouping people together for competition purposes gets quite arbitrary.

Consider a semi-frequent problem of transgender athletes.
They are frequently barred or hampered from competing within an event if it is gender-segregated.
Usually, the argument is made that they would have an unfair advantage.
If we were grouping people on actual biologically measured criteria for whatever is relevant to the sport in question, that would never be an issue in the first place.

But, since sex is the major division used, and the argument always seems to be framed in terms of fairness...
(kinda laughable considering innate biological differences between two individuals might just as easily mean one of them stands literally no chance whatsoever of beating the other in a competition no matter what they do, and many such differences have nothing to do with sex/gender)

But, if you take the notion of fairness seriously, and aren't just using it as an excuse,
A transgender athlete poses the question directly. Do they have an advantage? If so, in what areas. Just as importantly, why?
Frequently, these answers are assumed, but never actually put to the test.
Does someone who has been taking testosterone supplements for years have the strength and reflexes associated with a man? Or does some other aspect of their biology dominate?
Similarly, if someone has taken testosterone blockers and estrogen, is their strength liable to be in line with a male, or a female?

These are edge cases, for sure, but in these kinds of studies, the edge cases provide an awful lot of information as to what might be the underlying cause of biological differences, rather than just statistical observations of what the difference are, on average.

(incidentally, applying the average as a prediction of individual samples in a population is definitely a form of logical fallacy, and something of a misuse of statistics.)

few competitions are entirely fair, it seems. And even the measures that get used to make them more fair are really rather arbitrary more often than not.

~shrug~

I pretty much completely agree with the thesis of this video (that the sexy is core to the game, but not necessarily for mechanics reasons!)

I buy DOA because of the sex appeal. Don't get me wrong, I like the game play too, but there are plenty of other games out there that have similar or even better game play. What keeps me coming back to DOA is frankly if I am going to play a fighting game, I want to play one that has characters in it that appeals to me. Hence, I tend to gravitate towards either ones with super heroes in it (I caught the Marvel vs. Capcom bug early on in life) or ones with sexy girls.

I do not want DOA to get "less sexy" so that people will focus on the game play. I buy it because it's sexy.

I don't really understand what the hell people were thinking. The game is a small niche inside an already niche gaming market. The space it occupies will gladly be picked up by someone else if they ever abandon the design aesthetics of the game, because as is pointed out here - there is a market for sexy girls in video games.

Honestly this entire debacle is bizarre to me. The only analogy I can think of is it's like if distributors of Playboy decided that drawing bikini's on all the girls would get people to focus on the articles more or something, instead of just pissing off the people who buy playboy exactly for the sexy girls.

And furthermore, I don't really understand what the people who run these tournaments think they are gaining by essentially hiding the actual nature of the game. If they think that that toning down the sex appeal of the characters is going to draw more people into it, then wouldn't it stand to reason that people will then go on to purchase the game and realize that it's a lot racier than they thought it was?

It seems more reasonable and honest to me to simply promote DOA as it is. Does this mean that it will never be as big as some other series? Almost certainly that's the case. But it doesn't need to be. It just needs to have enough fan interest that it stays relevant (and profitable).

God That costume banning idea is stupid. Following that notion, we should ban Makoto and Litchi from being used in Blazblue tourneys, and Zero Suit Samus from Smash.

I just hope that, for fairness's sake, Alien Zack is banned too then. Skin-tight fetish gear like that is 2sexy4me.

I remember once as a....curious teen I rented DOA2 Hardcore to...see what the hype was about, yeah lets go with that. Surprisingly despite the very obvious fan service I didn't notice it at all while playing, mainly because the action was so fact paced and I was so focused on playing(button mashing, I was never all that good at fighting games) that all my attention was on my opponent, who was using a character as equally fan service-y as mine and yet I honestly didn't care. I'm not even that competitive of a person and yes I thought the girls were hot but I guess I was having too much fun to notice all the things that were supposed to be distracting me. Weird huh?

I think people are completely missing the point behind what the tournaments are trying to do. They aren't trying to make DoA less sexy, and they are definitely not trying to make it more 'equal'. What they're trying to do is reframe the conversation around the game.

The problem, as they see it, is that people dismiss DoA as essentially a porno with some game elements thrown in so it can get a space on a shelf. And maybe that's accurate for Beach Volleyball. Nevertheless, they are hoping with the soft ban on the raciest of costumes (keep in mind there are plenty of sexy outfits left to pick from) to remind people that the fighting game is an actual game that has some quality gameplay behind it.

Ultimately, I think the goal is noble, but the effort itself is misguided. Streisand effect comes into play here, if you go out and tell people not to talk about the boobs, they're gonna talk about the boobs. At this point, the DoA series has been around long enough that the people who /want/ to know about the gameplay kinda mostly already do, and the people who have written it off as a porn game aren't really interested in revisiting it and changing their mind. You can't make someone like your game if they don't want to.

Cryselle:
Nevertheless, they are hoping with the soft ban on the raciest of costumes (keep in mind there are plenty of sexy outfits left to pick from) to remind people that the fighting game is an actual game that has some quality gameplay behind it.

I think they're also trying to make it streamable, and thus grow the audience. Virtua Fighter has a similar problem, except with goofy alternate costumes instead of sexy ones: it's hard to tell who's who, and nobody looks like they would actually be fighting in a tournament. The DOA folks are trying to establish that they're legitimate, much like Smash Bros. went through, which is a noble goal even if the line is hazy.

Ultimately, I think DOA is just designed with the kind of exaggerated proportions and male gaze that would make viewers embarrassed if their wife walked in and the game was on TV, even with the default costumes. Zero Suit Samus and Sarah Bryant are wearing skintight leather and heels, but they just aren't in the same league.

axlryder:
So, taking all this at face value, I would assume that gay men should be the ultimate DOA powerhouses.

Unless their opponent chooses Jann Lee, Zack, Ryu...

Samtemdo8:

Paragon Fury:
I saw this episode back on Youtube when it first came out. Banning costumes seems like a silly thing to do regardless. DoA is known for having sexy ladies - if you're going to play the game, you're going to have to accept this. Costumes or no.

I don't know why we are even having this discussion I mean is Dead or Alive even relevent in gaming today? I mean how big of an impact did the DOA series offer to gaming in general or at least within in the fighting game genre?

And don't get me started on the Volleyball games I mean the second game only came out since 2006 I think. Almost 10 years ago and the gaming community moved on and yet people are still bringing it up.

What ever sex appeal the DOA games had is irrelevent in the current scene where The Witcher and Bioware and others pretty much replaced it. The only way the sex appeal of DOA will catch attention is if they make DOA volleyball 3 where its also a dating simulator, where you make a male avatar of your desire and a date one of the girls to the point of sex and actually seeing the goods. (Give that game to CDProjeckt RED and they might make it well written dating and well simulated sex)

Actually DOA is hugely relevant for a number of reasons. One of the reasons why the series continued is that it actually had some rather unique game play as far as the way counters worked, and the fact that for all the sex appeal they were using some actual fighting styles that were depicted well, including a few fighting games had not used before. One of the selling points of the first Dead Or Alive was that this wasn't a game where you'd see some kung-fu guy with the freak power to throw fireballs... although that attitude rapidly disappeared, and was always questionable due to the decision even early on to cross it over with the Ninja Gaiden universe... and the series has since weighed itself down with as much incomprehensible nonsense as other fighting games.

While I'm terrible at them fighting games are my second favorite genera after RPGs, and while it's hard to point to now, I've read some lengthy articles explaining the incestuous relationship between them and what influence each one had on other games. As I remember it DoA's countering game was one of it's big contributions and heavily copied. One of the odd things about it is that for a long time the character "Bayman" was a real beast for people that played other fighting games because he was so heavily based around counters, forcing mistakes, and then punishing his opponent terribly for them, the big issue with him is that you almost had to predict the fight in reverse to come out on top in exchanges.

As much as I demonize liberals, this is another case where you see the problem, what was always a very solid fighting franchise has been attacked relentlessly over the sex appeal and costumes involved, which has detracted from the game, causing a lot of people to underestimate it. That said trying to "soft ban" certain costumes and such is exactly the wrong approach to take in this kind of thing. The truth is the whole DoA concept on sex appeal and costumes was simply that alternate costumes were something that people liked to play to unlock, and DoA set out to have crazy numbers of alternate costumes, and it realized people like to play "Dress up" with women more than guys, not to mention the fact that the art team had more fun coming up with crazy stuff for the girls as well.

The beach volleyball games are something most people have no right to talk about since most have never played them and have no conception of what they even are like. I played the second one, and to be honest, it's basically an understated lesbian dating sim combined with a mini-game collection. Volleyball is simply one of the mini games which also include things like a slot machine, card games, a jet ski race, and weird horseplay games around a pool like "butt battle" with two girls trying to butt-bump each other into the pool. At the beginning of each game you choose what girl your playing and another girl as a partner, this actually has an effect on the game as they all have different stats and can influence the outcome of different events, this most notably comes into play during the Volleyball game. During the course of the game you collect costumes, and the whole gimmick to the dating sim aspects is to get your partner of the moment to like you enough by doing things in the game to wear one of your character's costumes, which then unlocks the costume for that character. So pretty much while your playing mini-games the idea is to try and arrange it so you can unlock all costumes on all characters which can take hundreds and hundreds of hours of playing mini-games.... that's really kind of it. You can't really knock it any more than say "Mario Party" or other mini-game collections. The minigames themselves are a mixed bag, but most are pretty well done. Anyone else saying otherwise is just projecting.

My opinion on the "Volleyball" game that I played was that it's all stuff that should have been part of the main game. I'm of the opinion that video games need to stand on their own merits, and at one point fighting game developers understood this and designed all kinds of alternate modes and minigames instead of the usual online and vs. computer modes. I felt that the various games in the collection would have been nice to include as part of the DoA package to pad out the single player value as a sort of equivalent to the Tekken Force modes and things like that.

When it comes to games like DOA once you start justifying yourself like it seems people here wanted to do, you've already lost for all intents and purposes.

Therumancer:

Samtemdo8:

Paragon Fury:
I saw this episode back on Youtube when it first came out. Banning costumes seems like a silly thing to do regardless. DoA is known for having sexy ladies - if you're going to play the game, you're going to have to accept this. Costumes or no.

I don't know why we are even having this discussion I mean is Dead or Alive even relevent in gaming today? I mean how big of an impact did the DOA series offer to gaming in general or at least within in the fighting game genre?

And don't get me started on the Volleyball games I mean the second game only came out since 2006 I think. Almost 10 years ago and the gaming community moved on and yet people are still bringing it up.

What ever sex appeal the DOA games had is irrelevent in the current scene where The Witcher and Bioware and others pretty much replaced it. The only way the sex appeal of DOA will catch attention is if they make DOA volleyball 3 where its also a dating simulator, where you make a male avatar of your desire and a date one of the girls to the point of sex and actually seeing the goods. (Give that game to CDProjeckt RED and they might make it well written dating and well simulated sex)

Actually DOA is hugely relevant for a number of reasons. One of the reasons why the series continued is that it actually had some rather unique game play as far as the way counters worked, and the fact that for all the sex appeal they were using some actual fighting styles that were depicted well, including a few fighting games had not used before. One of the selling points of the first Dead Or Alive was that this wasn't a game where you'd see some kung-fu guy with the freak power to throw fireballs... although that attitude rapidly disappeared, and was always questionable due to the decision even early on to cross it over with the Ninja Gaiden universe... and the series has since weighed itself down with as much incomprehensible nonsense as other fighting games.

While I'm terrible at them fighting games are my second favorite genera after RPGs, and while it's hard to point to now, I've read some lengthy articles explaining the incestuous relationship between them and what influence each one had on other games. As I remember it DoA's countering game was one of it's big contributions and heavily copied. One of the odd things about it is that for a long time the character "Bayman" was a real beast for people that played other fighting games because he was so heavily based around counters, forcing mistakes, and then punishing his opponent terribly for them, the big issue with him is that you almost had to predict the fight in reverse to come out on top in exchanges.

As much as I demonize liberals, this is another case where you see the problem, what was always a very solid fighting franchise has been attacked relentlessly over the sex appeal and costumes involved, which has detracted from the game, causing a lot of people to underestimate it. That said trying to "soft ban" certain costumes and such is exactly the wrong approach to take in this kind of thing. The truth is the whole DoA concept on sex appeal and costumes was simply that alternate costumes were something that people liked to play to unlock, and DoA set out to have crazy numbers of alternate costumes, and it realized people like to play "Dress up" with women more than guys, not to mention the fact that the art team had more fun coming up with crazy stuff for the girls as well.

The beach volleyball games are something most people have no right to talk about since most have never played them and have no conception of what they even are like. I played the second one, and to be honest, it's basically an understated lesbian dating sim combined with a mini-game collection. Volleyball is simply one of the mini games which also include things like a slot machine, card games, a jet ski race, and weird horseplay games around a pool like "butt battle" with two girls trying to butt-bump each other into the pool. At the beginning of each game you choose what girl your playing and another girl as a partner, this actually has an effect on the game as they all have different stats and can influence the outcome of different events, this most notably comes into play during the Volleyball game. During the course of the game you collect costumes, and the whole gimmick to the dating sim aspects is to get your partner of the moment to like you enough by doing things in the game to wear one of your character's costumes, which then unlocks the costume for that character. So pretty much while your playing mini-games the idea is to try and arrange it so you can unlock all costumes on all characters which can take hundreds and hundreds of hours of playing mini-games.... that's really kind of it. You can't really knock it any more than say "Mario Party" or other mini-game collections. The minigames themselves are a mixed bag, but most are pretty well done. Anyone else saying otherwise is just projecting.

My opinion on the "Volleyball" game that I played was that it's all stuff that should have been part of the main game. I'm of the opinion that video games need to stand on their own merits, and at one point fighting game developers understood this and designed all kinds of alternate modes and minigames instead of the usual online and vs. computer modes. I felt that the various games in the collection would have been nice to include as part of the DoA package to pad out the single player value as a sort of equivalent to the Tekken Force modes and things like that.

When it comes to games like DOA once you start justifying yourself like it seems people here wanted to do, you've already lost for all intents and purposes.

As a fighting game I was not too into DOA aswell as Tekken and Virtua Fighter because I am more of a 2D Side Scrolling fan of Fighting games. I always found the gameplay of full 3D fighting games (not graphics, gameplay) rather slow and their emphasis on realism also does not help (Never seen a 3D fighting game with projectiles for example)

I prefer games like Street Fighter, MvC, Mortal Kombat, and Killer Instinct. Side Scrolling and they have much more colorful fighters.

JohnZ117:

axlryder:
So, taking all this at face value, I would assume that gay men should be the ultimate DOA powerhouses.

Unless their opponent chooses Jann Lee, Zack, Ryu...

and Gen-fu, of course. Either way, they're still at the biggest statistical advantage.

Therumancer:
As much as I demonize liberals, this is another case where you see the problem, what was always a very solid fighting franchise has been attacked relentlessly over the sex appeal and costumes involved, which has detracted from the game, causing a lot of people to underestimate it.

I'm not entirely certain why you're exclusively demonizing liberals on this one, considering that shaming a game for being too sexy is VERY popular on the conservative side as well (recall the Sex-Box kerfuffle when Mass Effect first came out?). This is less of a partisan issue than it is a question of people seeing what they want to see and willfully ignoring the rest, which is a tactic heavily employed by pretty much everyone with an extreme view on anything.

Cryselle:

Therumancer:
As much as I demonize liberals, this is another case where you see the problem, what was always a very solid fighting franchise has been attacked relentlessly over the sex appeal and costumes involved, which has detracted from the game, causing a lot of people to underestimate it.

I'm not entirely certain why you're exclusively demonizing liberals on this one, considering that shaming a game for being too sexy is VERY popular on the conservative side as well (recall the Sex-Box kerfuffle when Mass Effect first came out?). This is less of a partisan issue than it is a question of people seeing what they want to see and willfully ignoring the rest, which is a tactic heavily employed by pretty much everyone with an extreme view on anything.

You are 100% correct that conservatives get up to the same nonsense. When conservatives are allowed to run amok through the media unchecked we get the same nonsense from a different direction, trust me despite what a lot of people might think from some of my social attitudes I'm hardly "hard" right and a lot of conservatives consider me a bloody hippy. I've spent a lot of time and effort say defending PnP RPGs with the same tenacity you see me going after liberals, that was just yesterday's issue.

I call out the liberals here because they are the ones who are responsible for the censorship problems right now, the style is simply different. Conservatives would pull something equivalent to the "Sex Box" argument and try and get the game banned, or at least slandered high and low through as much mainstream media as possible. Liberals instead go about their stuff by claiming the material victimizes women and you see things like here with the costumes being targeted, DoA Beach Volleyball being brought up as a dangerous exercise in fetishization of the ideal female form, which is insensitive to women, and so on. Conservatives attack directly, liberals do it directly oftentimes under the guise of compromise or to act like they are protecting someone or something and trying to bring special interests to bear. The whole "well, we'll target the costumes" thing is pretty much a liberal MO and a way of applying pressure with the ultimate intent of forcing the game to change to fit it's agenda or crumble under pressure. Neither side is more or less dangerous or wrong, it's all about who is swinging the axe at any given moment, and both sides need to be targeted. Trust me if we had extreme conservatives ranting about it being a devil game out to turn all our children into perverts or something I'd be after them to, and it wouldn't be the first time I've called our Republicans for being a bunch of idiots. Basically The Republicans have things like the 700 club (not sure if it's even still around), The Democrats tend to be expressed as more through the grassroots and figureheads like Anita Sarkeesian so it can be claimed there is no organization and this all genuinely comes from what the people think and want. Both ways of doing things have their pros and cons but it's always about controlling information, and both using their preferred tactics to convince you it's in your best interests, or in the name of protecting someone or something whether it's as nebulous as the fabric of American society, religion, or various "victim" groups. At the end of the day whether you let them get away with it because your afraid the devil is going to come for your baby through whatever it is, or because your say protecting women and serving their rights, it's all about giving up control and letting someone dictate what can be said, and heard.

I'll probably be too old for it to matter, if I even live that long, and who knows what forums will be out there, but when the pendelum swings back the other way, which I expect it will, you'll probably see me going after plenty of Republicans. The party is waning right now (and no, it will not ever be truly defeated and disappear) but the winds of political fortune always change, even if people don't tell them that. Almost guaranteed you'll eventually see the conservatives pulling the same crap from a position of strength again in your life time, their techniques will simply be different but all going to the same place.

Therumancer:

Cryselle:

Therumancer:
As much as I demonize liberals, this is another case where you see the problem, what was always a very solid fighting franchise has been attacked relentlessly over the sex appeal and costumes involved, which has detracted from the game, causing a lot of people to underestimate it.

I'm not entirely certain why you're exclusively demonizing liberals on this one, considering that shaming a game for being too sexy is VERY popular on the conservative side as well (recall the Sex-Box kerfuffle when Mass Effect first came out?). This is less of a partisan issue than it is a question of people seeing what they want to see and willfully ignoring the rest, which is a tactic heavily employed by pretty much everyone with an extreme view on anything.

You are 100% correct that conservatives get up to the same nonsense. When conservatives are allowed to run amok through the media unchecked we get the same nonsense from a different direction, trust me despite what a lot of people might think from some of my social attitudes I'm hardly "hard" right and a lot of conservatives consider me a bloody hippy. I've spent a lot of time and effort say defending PnP RPGs with the same tenacity you see me going after liberals, that was just yesterday's issue.

I call out the liberals here because they are the ones who are responsible for the censorship problems right now, the style is simply different. Conservatives would pull something equivalent to the "Sex Box" argument and try and get the game banned, or at least slandered high and low through as much mainstream media as possible. Liberals instead go about their stuff by claiming the material victimizes women and you see things like here with the costumes being targeted, DoA Beach Volleyball being brought up as a dangerous exercise in fetishization of the ideal female form, which is insensitive to women, and so on. Conservatives attack directly, liberals do it directly oftentimes under the guise of compromise or to act like they are protecting someone or something and trying to bring special interests to bear. The whole "well, we'll target the costumes" thing is pretty much a liberal MO and a way of applying pressure with the ultimate intent of forcing the game to change to fit it's agenda or crumble under pressure. Neither side is more or less dangerous or wrong, it's all about who is swinging the axe at any given moment, and both sides need to be targeted. Trust me if we had extreme conservatives ranting about it being a devil game out to turn all our children into perverts or something I'd be after them to, and it wouldn't be the first time I've called our Republicans for being a bunch of idiots. Basically The Republicans have things like the 700 club (not sure if it's even still around), The Democrats tend to be expressed as more through the grassroots and figureheads like Anita Sarkeesian so it can be claimed there is no organization and this all genuinely comes from what the people think and want. Both ways of doing things have their pros and cons but it's always about controlling information, and both using their preferred tactics to convince you it's in your best interests, or in the name of protecting someone or something whether it's as nebulous as the fabric of American society, religion, or various "victim" groups. At the end of the day whether you let them get away with it because your afraid the devil is going to come for your baby through whatever it is, or because your say protecting women and serving their rights, it's all about giving up control and letting someone dictate what can be said, and heard.

I'll probably be too old for it to matter, if I even live that long, and who knows what forums will be out there, but when the pendelum swings back the other way, which I expect it will, you'll probably see me going after plenty of Republicans. The party is waning right now (and no, it will not ever be truly defeated and disappear) but the winds of political fortune always change, even if people don't tell them that. Almost guaranteed you'll eventually see the conservatives pulling the same crap from a position of strength again in your life time, their techniques will simply be different but all going to the same place.

Except your whole diatribe is completely ignoring what is going on here. This isn't a response to outside pressure about how the game mistreats women. This isn't an attempt to change the game. The argument is NOT that sexy outfits have no place in the game. It's an attempt (which, as I said before, I feel is somewhat misguided) to reframe the conversation about the game so it focuses on gameplay rather than the outfits, because the outfits are pretty much the only thing anybody (regardless of affiliation) want to talk about. Heck, the Game Theory video we're responding to is a perfect example of this. It's response to the whole thing? To talk about the outfits and sex appeal. It doesn't really discuss gameplay at all. Which is what DoA fans are reacting to.

Ultimately what we have here is a bunch of people who are tired of seeing a video that shows an amazing combo in another fighter getting responses talking about the skill of the players, and a video that shows an amazing combo in DoA getting responses talking about the outfits.

Cryselle:
[

Except your whole diatribe is completely ignoring what is going on here. This isn't a response to outside pressure about how the game mistreats women. This isn't an attempt to change the game. The argument is NOT that sexy outfits have no place in the game. It's an attempt (which, as I said before, I feel is somewhat misguided) to reframe the conversation about the game so it focuses on gameplay rather than the outfits, because the outfits are pretty much the only thing anybody (regardless of affiliation) want to talk about. Heck, the Game Theory video we're responding to is a perfect example of this. It's response to the whole thing? To talk about the outfits and sex appeal. It doesn't really discuss gameplay at all. Which is what DoA fans are reacting to.

Ultimately what we have here is a bunch of people who are tired of seeing a video that shows an amazing combo in another fighter getting responses talking about the skill of the players, and a video that shows an amazing combo in DoA getting responses talking about the outfits.

I think you missed my point, both sides work differently. This is what you call a non-issue to begin with, the series has been around for numerous installments and other than some jokes about the costumes (even used in the advertising) nobody really cared except for a bunch of ultra-liberal feminists. Now that your seeing things swinging more leftward your seeing the typical tactics coming into play, a bunch of "fans" are trying to soft ban something that liberals object to for their own reasons, in hopes that others will rally and the company will get concerned enough to change what it's doing. Liberals try and make it look like it comes from the people like this, they do engage in direct actions as well, but that isn't how this form of censorship works. The people involved might not even realize how they are being manipulated themselves. The entire point of it is so that liberals can go "hmm what, geez, why are you targeting liberals, this is nothing on a large scale, nobody is being forced to do anything, people are just doing this on their own, there isn't an agenda at play here even if it is exactly what liberals want". It makes it easy to claim the other side is being paranoid, or whatever. As I said liberals can be direct also, but the usual methods aren't the same as say having the equivalent of the 700 club virtually kicking down your door. It's called being subtle in bringing about the change. Trust me, if it wasn't for all the feminist ranting about video games I doubt anyone would have even considered trying this, DoA was never in any real danger of being disrespected, it's now an old and pedigreed franchise that has been around since the original PlayStation, with a large installed base of players to the point where there hasn't been much danger of it dying out, and anyone who is going to be taking fighting games seriously enough for this to matter isn't going to be concerned about the costumes anyway. To be brutally honest the costumes in DoA aren't even all that, it's just that there tends to be a lot of them to collect, almost all fighting games have their sexy costumes, and it's one of the things almost all fighting games sell as DLC. Amazingly though you'll notice nobody seems to complain about what Poison wears in Street Fighter.

There is no point argueing it though, you obviously won't agree.

ObsidianJones:
Actually as a fighting game enthusiast, I have to say it's with continued lament that I see this game just being written off as "the one with boobs". The Rock/Paper/Scissors combat with Frame advantage, juggles, Desparation moves, and stage damage makes it freaking exciting when done well. Like a sped up version of Virtua Fighter, maybe with 65% amount of the same Depth. Making it more accessible to others and more people willing to get into it.

Jake Martinez:
I pretty much completely agree with the thesis of this video (that the sexy is core to the game, but not necessarily for mechanics reasons!)

I buy DOA because of the sex appeal. Don't get me wrong, I like the game play too, but there are plenty of other games out there that have similar or even better game play. What keeps me coming back to DOA is frankly if I am going to play a fighting game, I want to play one that has characters in it that appeals to me. Hence, I tend to gravitate towards either ones with super heroes in it (I caught the Marvel vs. Capcom bug early on in life) or ones with sexy girls.

I do not want DOA to get "less sexy" so that people will focus on the game play. I buy it because it's sexy.

I don't really understand what the hell people were thinking. The game is a small niche inside an already niche gaming market. The space it occupies will gladly be picked up by someone else if they ever abandon the design aesthetics of the game, because as is pointed out here - there is a market for sexy girls in video games.

Honestly this entire debacle is bizarre to me. The only analogy I can think of is it's like if distributors of Playboy decided that drawing bikini's on all the girls would get people to focus on the articles more or something, instead of just pissing off the people who buy playboy exactly for the sexy girls.
...
It seems more reasonable and honest to me to simply promote DOA as it is. Does this mean that it will never be as big as some other series? Almost certainly that's the case. But it doesn't need to be. It just needs to have enough fan interest that it stays relevant (and profitable).

Which highlights the core of the problem, you can't be a serious game and a chest mounted jello (because they are clearly making no attempt to go for actual breast physics) simulator. That's not to say it can't be a good game and still include the pandering, but you can't ever hope to be treated seriously if part of your design philosophy is "Hehe... boobies!". They're mutually exclusive concepts.

They need to decide what they are trying to create. If they want to create a jiggle simulator, then fine, do it, own it, but be [b]honest[b] about it! If they want to create a serious fighting game, then they, well, need to be serious about it. Stop shoving content into it that looks like it was designed to appeal to a boy who had just found his first Playboy (not sure that metaphor really holds up nowadays, but you get where I'm comming from).

I vehemently disagree that sex appeal disqualifies one from seriousness. That's a puritanical notion. There's just the serious moments and the not as serious moments. What disqualifies something from being serious is an overall state of being. If all it is is sex appeal (like the beach volleyball games) then yes, that's fine. On the other hand, if what mostly is found is serious storylines and cool battles and here and there you see a bit of a jiggle or a revealing costume, then that's not enough to tip the scales and still overall the game ends up being more serious than unserious, which is the state of the competitive games.

One drop rules are illogical and not nuanced enough to sufficiently describe complex things such as games.

CrystalShadow:
Matpat half-assing an argument again it seems. XD

The problem isn't what he's saying, but that he doesn't properly follow the implications, or glosses over important points.

Let's look at the delay caused by sexual arousal. Now, you can't nessesarily predict what will arouse any given person, but logic would dictate, if both players are heterosexual males (with similar tastes and arousal responses), the competive advantage of a player using a... sexy costume would be...?
Nothing at all.

Why? because both players see both fighters at all times. Thus, both are having their reaction times messed up by it, not just the opponent of the one using the 'sexy' costume.
That makes the advantage, if any, one of innate biology.
Which player is least affected by arousal?

Worth something to heterosexual female players, or gay men perhaps, but to anyone else, not an actual competitive advantage at all.

then, the second point about biological differences in reaction times between men and women...
It shares the same quality of stupidity as all such arguments ultimately do.

Confusing an average for a universal rule.
Human innate abilities and traits are not homogenous. They have a wide distribution, and range.
The average can certainly tell you something about large groups, but it will mess you up bigtime if you blindly apply the average to individuals.

Take height. Height is a trait with a normal distribution. Actually, if you take sex differences (of adults - children are more similar) into account, it has a binormal distribution. One peak for male, one for female.
The avarages also vary by country, but that's a side issue.

The important point however is, that, while, yes, on average, men are taller than women, it would be completely idiotic to pick a man and a woman at random and state that the man is taller, just because of the averages.
You could have a really tall woman.
Or a really short man.
Or they could both be unusually short, but still have the man be shorter...
Or not.

The average, cannot reliably predict the individual!

And if you're talking a competitive environment, the innate pressures of it will tend to select for the people that are best suited, biologically, for that environment.
Fighting games clearly, would select for players with the best innate reflexes. The averages then, become even less meaningful, because the high-level competition would be defined by the extremes, not the averages.
The most relevant issue in competition would thus be what the upper extremes are, if you're going to compare the sexes.

On a tangential note, if competitions are meant to be tests of skill, and not just innate biology, it seems that we should put people in categories based on their innate biology, as relevant to the nature of the competition.

We seperate men and women for this reason in sports, but is that really the correct approach?
I once read a study on strength differences between men and women. (there are a lot of those)
The results of many studies are predictable. Men are stronger, by some margin, on average, than women, especially in terms of upper body strength.
But, that's random people who may vary for other reasons.
This one study specifically compared top athletes (swimmers in this case).
The gap got smaller for highly trained athletes, but still persisted.

But then, buried in the notes of the study was one further point. They had started to specifically compare mwn and women of similar body types. Similar heights, weights, builds and skill levels.
You know what emerged from that?
The difference in strength between men and women basically became statistically insignificant.

Turns out, after controlling for health, fitness, and training, the supposed male/female difference in strength was illusory.
A factor not of random innate differences, but one almost entirely defined by size.
The reason women seemed weaker was entirely down to them being on average, physically smaller.
No more, no less.

(the implications for competitive sports seem fairly obvious really. In a lot of ways sorting people by bodytype or size or the like would be fairer than sorting them by sex)

So... you know. Be careful on the assumptions you make. Because you may be missing the real reason for something being the case in all the presumptions involved.

Ah, sweet. I was wondering how many posts it would take for someone to say that science is bullshit. Statistically differing means are literally the basis for most well-designed studies.

 

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