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Women vs Tropes in Video Games


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#41 AniMerrill   Members   -  Reputation: 203

Posted 09 March 2013 - 03:51 AM

My only beef with the whole thing is the quality of it vs. how much she got from Kickstarter, nothing to do with her message. Honestly I've started to lose faith in Kickstarter, and everyone who says its actually their fault for bad business practices... I agree. And its not that I'm mad because I actually funded it either. I'm mad because you could probably go on YouTube, right now, and find more in depth discussion by women and men alike on a topic like this that they recorded in their spare time in their pajamas. And, more than likely, some of those people probably make decent ad money in comparison to the costs they put into their video- which for most is close to none.
 
 

More generally, all non-player characters are servants to the player's experience-- I would be unhappy in any game if an NPC had a bigger role in resolving the plot than me regardless of its gender. You could say the same about a player character as well given that he or she is distinct from the player. That makes it really really easy to cast any video game character in a feministically unfriendly way: if the player character is a woman, does that mean that she's just a puppet for her a player, statistically likely to be male? If the archvillain of a game is a woman, does that mean that the player is out to destroy a powerful woman? Certainly these arguments, and limitless others, could be made. That doesn't mean that they're right, just that they can be analytically valid.

 
And I think this is a perfectly good argument as to why her points AREN'T completely valid, at least not the way she delivered them. In the end, characters are ALL objects, objects of our amusement... regardless if they're male, female, or asexual frog people. They're ALL puppets in a plot, to tell a STORY. Mileage may vary if you do or do not like the story (I knew I grew out of the "rescue the princess" plot when I was... like six), but that's all it is. Encapsulation of the human experience. Again, it is a symptom not a cause of the real, actual problems I would agree with a feminist any day that actually, really exist. Stories about objectification and sexual exploitation are grossly common, but that's because its a sad part of human nature we need to change in REALITY.
 
Of course I want video games with more empowered, more female-centric plots and less stupid damsel characters... because that's going to be the moment where video games stop being a gross mass media and start becoming an art. Telling the stories of general, real human experience and not just the stories an 18-35 year old male want to hear.
 
EDIT:
Here, video on same general topic, taking a slightly different angle, and making a good interesting argument in under 8 minutes.


Edited by AniMerrill, 09 March 2013 - 04:09 AM.

AniMerrill, a.k.a. Ethan Merrill


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#42 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12334

Posted 09 March 2013 - 09:09 AM

Also, do you really need to repeat this tired old cliche?  Actually, back in this thread (http://www.gamedev.net/topic/639144-sony-and-the-ps4-im-impressed-your-thoughts/page-3) you were rightly criticizing the stereotyping of men as "sex-hungry dolts".  So why the change?

Because it can in this cased be used to support my stance on the topic.
Name a single human who does not wheel certain facts into his or her direction for his or her own sake.

In fact I was really hoping someone would call me on that and point it out. Thank you so much.

And we return to my original point.
Why am I the least-bothered by this video?

Because I truly accept that everyone has a view on a subject.
Yep, I have my views on “Take a running start here” in those same PlayStation Portable ads in your link prompting people to to commit train suicide.
And just now I mentioned that instead of the “Your girlfriend’s white bits here” part that I originally mentioned.
Why? Because it supports the point I want to make more.
Exactly what she did during the entire video.

That is not to say she is entirely wrong. I mean you can skew things in your favor, but sometimes those things are really true.
The basic fundamental idea is that I believe no one is special. We all skew things. No one is immune.
Not me, not you, not even Hodgman.

As long as I can accept that reality this video does not bother me.

I am a scientist and I do care about facts, but if you can’t distinguish between personal things and scientifically provable things then you are in for a world of hurt.
But past that a lot people do know what is science and what is not, but still put their feelings into it.

I watched the video and as a veteran of the industry I certainly know the history more than she does. I can easily give her credit in some spots because there were a few details I did not know. And I was just happy to learn.

If you are a person who only seeks knowledge and cares nothing about ego, do you not see her video the same way as I do?
Being in the industry for so long of course I knew most things on the video, but really I did also learn a few things.
The fact that her viewpoint is not my own is not a factor in the “I have gained new knowledge and thus become a better human overall” equation.

Sorry but I am absorbed in this selfless attitude in which people can present tons of information in strange and maybe biased ways, but as long as I feel I have learned something true I am satisfied, regardless of peoples’ biases. I do try to sort out their biases, but as long as I feel I am doing that correctly I am fine. And by this point any mistake is my own fault.

The fact that their ideas are not my own do not factor into this. Not even remotely. I didn’t even consider that was possible.
I guess I got carried away with this idea which is why it shocked me that this would ever go beyond a single page.


Seriously, how much is there to discuss??
Her views do not align with your own. End of story?
Please?
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
I went to my local Subway once to find some guy yelling at the staff. When someone finally came to take my order and asked, “May I help you?”, I replied, “Yeah, I’ll have one asshole to go.”
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#43 swiftcoder   Senior Moderators   -  Reputation: 9654

Posted 09 March 2013 - 09:35 AM

My only beef with the whole thing is the quality of it vs. how much she got from Kickstarter, nothing to do with her message. Honestly I've started to lose faith in Kickstarter, and everyone who says its actually their fault for bad business practices... I agree.

I still think that is profoundly unfair to her, and represents a fundamental misunderstanding of kickstarter's model.
 
She didn't ask for that money (she only asked for $6,000, or about 3 months living expenses). She was freely given the extra $150,000 after a bunch of assholes created massive media coverage for her. And for I'd say that the resulting quality/length/research is about right for $6,000 - not every project scales infinitely.
 
Kickstarter isn't a microinvestment platform (where you would expect a return on your investment), and it isn't a sales platform (where you expect goods in return for your investment). It's purely a platform to fund creativity - you see something you think would make the world a better place, you donate a few bucks to make it happen. If it doesn't happen, or the result sucks? No loss, you only spent a few bucks, and you'll know better next time...


Tristam MacDonald - Software Engineer @Amazon - [swiftcoding]


#44 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 09 March 2013 - 11:41 AM

My only beef with the whole thing is the quality of it vs. how much she got from Kickstarter, nothing to do with her message. Honestly I've started to lose faith in Kickstarter, and everyone who says its actually their fault for bad business practices... I agree.

I still think that is profoundly unfair to her, and represents a fundamental misunderstanding of kickstarter's model.
 
She didn't ask for that money (she only asked for $6,000, or about 3 months living expenses). 

 

I dunno. There's a lot of youtube content creators that didn't need $6,000 to make very high quality videos. The fact that she needed any money at all should indicate a higher level of quality than the average youtube video.



#45 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 09 March 2013 - 11:46 AM

I seriously can't believe that on a forum that's supposedly populated by intelligent developers I'm seeing such pathetic defensive posts.

Her points are entirely valid. For any triple A game you can name where we have a strong female lead, I can name TEN where they are damsels or male titilation as leads.

I don't think that's the point people are making.



#46 swiftcoder   Senior Moderators   -  Reputation: 9654

Posted 09 March 2013 - 11:49 AM

I dunno. There's a lot of youtube content creators that didn't need $6,000 to make very high quality videos. The fact that she needed any money at all should indicate a higher level of quality than the average youtube video.

Everyone has living expenses - either those youtube content creators do it as a hobby while working a day job, or they are making a living from ad revenue/sponsors.

 

Do you think there is something wrong with wanting to make a living from what you love, rather than just doing it as a part time hobby?


Tristam MacDonald - Software Engineer @Amazon - [swiftcoding]


#47 jwezorek   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1642

Posted 09 March 2013 - 12:15 PM

And rent on a serviceable apartment is like 250$.

Where do you live? In American cities big enough to have some software companies to work for, I haven't seen apartments that cheap, basically, ever.

 

I worked in a smaller city in the 1990's and at that time and place about the cheapest you could go was $400 a month -- and even that is certainly not possible now, even there.


Edited by jwezorek, 09 March 2013 - 12:16 PM.


#48 Oberon_Command   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1796

Posted 09 March 2013 - 12:57 PM

I think it is fairly obvious. Would you prefer that we are all exactly the same?

Being different keep things interesting. But I know that keeping a mix in things is much more important to me than it is to most others.

Maybe I should clarify. I'm not disputing that having a society consist of an army of identical drones is a bad thing; I don't want that, either. I value and cherish individuality as do most of my friends. But that's not what we're talking about here. Your claim in the context of this thread was that the genders need to be different, not individuals; that in order for society not to fall apart, people with different genitalia need to have different personalities, specifically as a consequence of what genitalia they have. THAT is the claim I was disputing; THAT is the claim that has yet to be justified.

Edited by Oberon_Command, 09 March 2013 - 12:58 PM.


#49 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 09 March 2013 - 01:30 PM

Do you think there is something wrong with wanting to make a living from what you love, rather than just doing it as a part time hobby?

There's nothing wrong with it. I'm not saying she shouldn't have done the kickstarter/made the video. I'm saying she should have done a better job of it. Expectations go way up when you want to be paid for doing something.

#50 Orangeatang   Members   -  Reputation: 1410

Posted 09 March 2013 - 04:17 PM

Seriously, how much is there to discuss??
Her views do not align with your own. End of story?

Life would be incredibly boring if people just stopped talking to each other when they don't agree. Welcome to internet forums :) 



#51 jwezorek   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1642

Posted 09 March 2013 - 05:58 PM

I liked the video. It was pretty interesting and down to earth. I like how its edited, those short commercials/images/gameplay bits are set up to speak for themselves instead of her going over them and explaining them, which keeps a clear message.

 

It was a wise decision not to allow comments nor ratings on the video, the message would be drowned in the mass of the not-so respectful internet dwellers.

 

How many videos she is expected to release?

 

Yeah I thought it was pretty good too.



#52 AniMerrill   Members   -  Reputation: 203

Posted 09 March 2013 - 07:41 PM

And we return to my original point.
Why am I the least-bothered by this video?

 

You're the least bothered because you're the only one that is looking at this from the perspective of "feminist issues are a real thing that need to be talked about." Duh. Obviously. That's not an opinion, that's an objective fact that only the most bigoted would disagree with (which, yeah, a lot of them are on the internet). Honestly its shameful that in a modern, first world society we still can't completely grasp the fact "Oh hey, we're all the same species and need each other to survive... we should treat everyone by the same standard."

 

The thing a lot of people are upset about isn't that she's talking about feminist issues. The thing people are upset that this was the first taste of what she planned to do with $16k after 6 months. Btw, I literally looked up "roles of women in video games" or something similar on YouTube and found a much more interesting (albeit a bit more amateur) video where someone was talking about this very subject. I don't care that she's a woman, or that she has an idea I generally agree with: I'm angry that someone was basically able to make it rain with a shallow business pitch (I remember seeing it once before it was over) and this is all they have to show for it.

 

If she wants to make a documentary, fine, make a documentary. But if all the backers got was like... a newsroom shot while she spouted sparse facts overlayed by fancy graphics, then yeah she could have probably done that as a hobby on the side. As someone else mentioned: of course it's great to make money off something you love, but the standards go up when you start asking for money.

 

Also to the person who said it was a good idea to disable comments and ratings because it would "get in the way of the message"... do you realize how hypocritical that statement is? This is a video series intended to INCREASE DISCUSSION ABOUT WOMEN IN VIDEO GAMES, so it's a good idea to discourage any kind of response or free thought on the very video itself? Can I get an English major in here to determine whether or not that's irony... because I think it is.


Edited by AniMerrill, 09 March 2013 - 07:41 PM.

AniMerrill, a.k.a. Ethan Merrill


#53 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12334

Posted 09 March 2013 - 08:01 PM

Your claim in the context of this thread was that the genders need to be different, not individuals; that in order for society not to fall apart, people with different genitalia need to have different personalities, specifically as a consequence of what genitalia they have. THAT is the claim I was disputing; THAT is the claim that has yet to be justified.

No, my claim is not actually related to genders at all, at least not directly. That’s just guilt by association.
I basically want to say that differences are good (and indeed allow species to evolve, so they are necessary), and the larger differences make me personally more interested in a person (this part is just me, not the main point).

As it turns out, the best way to make people different is to pump different chemicals—“hormones” if you will—through their bodies.

In other words, it is just related to certain chemicals rather than gender, but gender is what causes those chemicals (in most people).


With men being from Mars and women from Venus, these chemicals certainly are effective.
Men cannot understand what women are thinking nor vice-versa. This kind of mystery is something I cherish, and indeed we all do on some level.
This is the foundation of “it’s necessary for us to be different”.
Gender plays a passive role, but it causes those chemicals and physical differences as well that create the largest gap between people, and frankly life would be bland without it.


L. Spiro
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
I went to my local Subway once to find some guy yelling at the staff. When someone finally came to take my order and asked, “May I help you?”, I replied, “Yeah, I’ll have one asshole to go.”
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#54 AltarofScience   Members   -  Reputation: 926

Posted 09 March 2013 - 08:12 PM

Your claim in the context of this thread was that the genders need to be different, not individuals; that in order for society not to fall apart, people with different genitalia need to have different personalities, specifically as a consequence of what genitalia they have. THAT is the claim I was disputing; THAT is the claim that has yet to be justified.

No, my claim is not actually related to genders at all, at least not directly. That’s just guilt by association.
I basically want to say that differences are good (and indeed allow species to evolve, so they are necessary), and the larger differences make me personally more interested in a person (this part is just me, not the main point).

As it turns out, the best way to make people different is to pump different chemicals—“hormones” if you will—through their bodies.

In other words, it is just related to certain chemicals rather than gender, but gender is what causes those chemicals (in most people).


With men being from Mars and women from Venus, these chemicals certainly are effective.
Men cannot understand what women are thinking nor vice-versa. This kind of mystery is something I cherish, and indeed we all do on some level.
This is the foundation of “it’s necessary for us to be different”.
Gender plays a passive role, but it causes those chemicals and physical differences as well that create the largest gap between people, and frankly life would be bland without it.


L. Spiro

You may be a brilliant programmer but, your information on biology is sorely out of date. And similarly for psychology.



#55 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 12334

Posted 09 March 2013 - 08:49 PM

You may be a brilliant programmer but, your information on biology is sorely out of date. And similarly for psychology.

I am always open to education if you are willing to point out where I have gone astray.

But this might be a good time to mention that the only thing that has gone into my stomach in the last 3 days is 50%-vol (not proof) Vodka, and I should probably just remove myself from the conversation. Even drunk I can see I am saying a few idiotic things.

I don’t think I will be replying again until I deem myself fit for social contact (which may never happen, because if I am to be 100% honest my objective right now is to die), but do feel free to “update” me.


L. Spiro
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
I went to my local Subway once to find some guy yelling at the staff. When someone finally came to take my order and asked, “May I help you?”, I replied, “Yeah, I’ll have one asshole to go.”
L. Spiro Engine: http://lspiroengine.com
L. Spiro Engine Forums: http://lspiroengine.com/forums

#56 Alpha_ProgDes   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4680

Posted 09 March 2013 - 09:17 PM

You may be a brilliant programmer but, your information on biology is sorely out of date. And similarly for psychology.

I am always open to education if you are willing to point out where I have gone astray.

But this might be a good time to mention that the only thing that has gone into my stomach in the last 3 days is 50%-vol (not proof) Vodka, and I should probably just remove myself from the conversation. Even drunk I can see I am saying a few idiotic things.

I don’t think I will be replying again until I deem myself fit for social contact (which may never happen, because if I am to be 100% honest my objective right now is to die), but do feel free to “update” me.


L. Spiro

 
LOL. A real damsel in distress!

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#57 BGB   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1545

Posted 10 March 2013 - 03:07 AM


And rent on a serviceable apartment is like 250$.

Where do you live? In American cities big enough to have some software companies to work for, I haven't seen apartments that cheap, basically, ever.
 
I worked in a smaller city in the 1990's and at that time and place about the cheapest you could go was $400 a month -- and even that is certainly not possible now, even there.


previously in the thread:


I live in Missouri, and you can get 250$-350$ housing in KC, STL where I live, and Columbia where I went to Mizzou for a bit. Possibly even less depending on the details.

note that cost of living is much lower in the midwest, but at least in my case (also living in the midwest, but in Oklahoma), there are no real software jobs short of going somewhere like Texas or similar... (don't currently have a job, more just doing stuff on my own...).

but, like anything, there are good points and there are drawbacks.

#58 Rakilonn   Members   -  Reputation: 421

Posted 10 March 2013 - 04:32 AM

Women, want to get revenge on the men?
Disappear from the Earth.  That would drive the men absolutely batshit crazy.  A sign of females’ value to men despite any perceived objectification.

Also, do you really need to repeat this tired old cliche?  Actually, back in this thread (http://www.gamedev.net/topic/639144-sony-and-the-ps4-im-impressed-your-thoughts/page-3) you were rightly criticizing the stereotyping of men as "sex-hungry dolts".  So why the change?

 

 

Why turn this at the extreme case ? For what I know most fathers and mothers say that the best thing that happens in their live is the coming of their little babies. So yes the live is more fun when there are men and women. 



#59 Icebone1000   Members   -  Reputation: 984

Posted 10 March 2013 - 06:44 AM

I just want to bring some other thing (I didnt saw the vid or read all the posts)

Today game market isnt all about AAA anymore, casual games (facebook and mobile) share an enormous amount in the market (if not more then 50%, I didnt find any numbers with a quick search, but lets face AAA games are competing with indies already). Casual games arent male focused games in any way, Id say my mom is playing way more games than me due facebook and browser games (tetris, farming, that bejeweled puzzle, etc).



#60 jwezorek   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1642

Posted 10 March 2013 - 10:14 AM

Casual games arent male focused games in any way

Yeah, this is a good point. From my understanding casual game companies specifically target women. I learned this first hand actually from the rejection feedback I got upon submitting a puzzle game to a casual game company in Seattle (not PopCap). Basically they said something like 90% of their users were women and that they didn't think my game which was an abstract puzzle game would appeal to them.


Edited by jwezorek, 10 March 2013 - 10:19 AM.





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