Brandon Strader

Tropes vs. Women / #GamerGate Conspiracies

Recommended Posts

What? The tale of a father eating his children is a perfect bedtime story. And it'll help keep your kids in line when you tell it to them while holding a knife and fork :lol:

Don't forget the part where the father's son cuts off his dad's junk, whips it over his shoulder where it lands in the sea and foams. From that, the goddess of beauty and love is born.

Seriously.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Enough actual violence occurs against actual women, even in the U.S. We don't really need to add to that by making light of it in a game.

Enough actual violence occurs period. what makes people think that abstracting from violence against women in fiction is a different beast?

either think about violence as a whole and why it constantly serves as an audience magnet in media, or don't.

taking violence against women/kids and putting it on some higher pedestal of evil isn't doing anything really. it opens up another subcategory that makes violent people feel better about their own latent violence, 'cause they'd never go there, of course.

similarily, murderers take out their violence on child molestors in prison.

similarily, games and movies aim to create ultimate villains that everyone can feel good about killing/watching them die.

i know what you're talking about, emotionally. i hate seeing women suffer on screen.

why don't i care about the dudes getting massacred that much? because i've been desensitized. like all of ya.

it's all machismo and faux gentleman bullshit. violence is violence, suffering is suffering. it's all retarded, but some of the retardation is part of mainstream culture.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i mean simply enough, could that have happened without the game being like 'nice you killed that stupid bitch'? yeah.

like there's no reason for it to be there so it shouldn't be. even if it WAS in reference to the dude taking you away, trophies are put in games for things that YOU DID. otherwise it's a worthless trophy and (again) doesn't need to be in there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is obviously a point we're not going to agree on. So rather than restating my stance, I'll simply say this...

You can call that fluff if you want, but the motivational intent is still there. And saying that the games I mentioned, that have a man trying to rescue his friend/love, just treat the woman as if she were interchangeable with any inanimate object isn't a fair assessment... to me at least.

I disagree. We (the players) are only controlling the hero, not actually being the hero. It's not our viewpoint being used, it's the hero's. In the games that use the "captured love/friend" plot, she's not his possession, she's someone he cares about. If the player tosses that aside, then the problem isn't with the game, it's with the player, as they're inserting ideas that otherwise aren't there. That's a very important distinction that shouldn't be cast aside to make more examples for a point.

To me, the issue at hand stems from the creativity front regarding game makers more than anything else; not any level of gender bias from our world's history. I think the trope we're discussing is a simplistic plot device that's outdated, but not intended to reflect any malice, or make a statement about women's societal roles in general. And saying something is sexist when there's no actual purposeful sexism present in what's being shown, comes off as looking for sexism where it otherwise didn't exist. Of taking that history, and crowbarring it into something that's not addressing or displaying it (the history I mean).

The thing is, sexism doesn't have to be intentional (neither does racism) to be considered sexism, but it's hard to talk about the 'milder' examples because it's so insidious. If a job interviewer, without realizing, hires more men than women in spite of their equal qualifications, he's not being actively malicious (since he doesn't even realize it), but he is being sexist.

You're right that there's a distinction between the hero's perspective and the player's perspective, but that is where to me the problem lies. In older games where the plot and characters really aren't expanded upon, we as the players don't actually know why Mario wants to save Princess Toadstool, because she doesn't really appear or do anything in the game. The way the game presents it really is just "X got stolen from you, go retrieve it/her", and that's where the problem lies.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love it. People going nuts about sexism in video games like God of War. Well, I guess it's so worth it to denounce video games because it's totally helping to achieve gender equality in real world.:roll: What about basic creeps in GoW, who the protagonist is gunning down by the hundreds? They're usually males. And I'd argue that a captured princess Peach hardly has less of an identity than them:)!!:tomatoface:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I love it. People going nuts about sexism in video games like God of War. Well, I guess it's so worth it to denounce video games because it's totally helping to achieve gender equality in real world.:roll: What about basic creeps in GoW, who the protagonist is gunning down by the hundreds? They're usually males. And I'd argue that a captured princess Peach hardly has less of an identity than them:)!!:tomatoface:

Who are you even trying to argue against here?

Anyway, the issue I'd have with that vid is that

1. The woman in the scene is generally pretty realistically proportioned, in contrast to the monsters Kratos usually fights. I don't really have a problem with the brutality itself, but the imagery of Kratos bashing a womans head into a wall and stomping on her face is kind of disturbing to me because it brings to mind other things such as domestic violence.

2. The achievement name is just lazy and dumb. There are a million of other puns/references you could use to describe what happens in the video, but instead they essentially choose to go with "ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED: CURBSTOMPED A WOMAN". Sure, Kratos brutally murders plenty of men, but I can't recall a single instance of unlocking an achievement with a gender reference in the title afterwards.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, this is the reason I've never really been much fan of neither Mario nor Zelda games. They have dull concepts and fail to entertain me most of the time.

The interesting thing is that, a lot of women out there prefer female characters to act sexy, see how well Bayonetta was received by female gamers?

But she also saved the MAN in that game, which was a fresh take on it. Reversed roles.

The game NeverDead has a female sidekick that has a lot of guts and can protect herself, the only reason why you protect her a little at times in that game is because you are immortal and can take the hits. But again she is portrayed in a sexy way and cameras love to zoom in on her ''parts''.

I think Meryl in Metal Gear Solid 1 and 4 was badass and she was even the leader of her own group in MGS4, but you had to save her a couple of times as well. But let's not forget that Otacon was the whimpiest character in that game.

Personally I love how RPG's handle women a lot of the time. Equally strong team members that either help out intellectually or often times tend to be even stronger than male party members, like Pascal in Tales of Graces for example. And Tifa in FF VII even takes Cloud's place during a part in the story while HE needs the help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The thing is, sexism doesn't have to be intentional (neither does racism) to be considered sexism, but it's hard to talk about the 'milder' examples because it's so insidious. If a job interviewer, without realizing, hires more men than women in spite of their equal qualifications, he's not being actively malicious (since he doesn't even realize it), but he is being sexist.

Agreed. I think that's why some male gamers get really defensive about it... "What, me, sexist??!" But that's really what it is, societal sexism, when we accept it as natural for the woman to be rescued in a game (or movie, book), while the male characters can make their own escape by strength, intelligence, or guile. That's not to say all men are horrible or anything, which is not the point of this video series I don't think.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Agreed. I think that's why some male gamers get really defensive about it... "What, me, sexist??!" But that's really what it is, societal sexism, when we accept it as natural for the woman to be rescued in a game (or movie, book), while the male characters can make their own escape by strength, intelligence, or guile. That's not to say all men are horrible or anything, which is not the point of this video series I don't think.

some male gamers get 'really defensive about it' because they ARE sexist and want to protect their last bastion of free sexism while it lasts.

i don't disagree but remember not to give people too much credit.

And I'd argue that a captured princess Peach hardly has less of an identity than them

and that is why

youdustdontunderstand.jpg

but i still must explain. you just tried to say that a mindless, sexless, monsterminion has as much or more worth than the most well-known female videogame character of all time. aka equating both as worthless.

they may just be bits of code but let's be real that's like saying some average dude in texas is worth as much as the queen of england because they both, you know, just sit in their chairs all day.

Edited by The Derrit

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Who are you even trying to argue against here?

Why do you want me to argue against someone? :banghead: I commented on the video, genius.

Okay? But here's what you said: "Well, I guess it's so worth it to denounce video games because it's totally helping to achieve gender equality in real world." Nobody in this thread even claimed anything similar so who does that refer to? Who are the people denouncing video games? 8-):lmassoff::x

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Okay? But here's what you said: "Well, I guess it's so worth it to denounce video games because it's totally helping to achieve gender equality in real world." Nobody in this thread even claimed anything similar so who does that refer to? Who are the people denouncing video games? 8-):lmassoff::x

You seem like a guy who has too much spare time, jumping on individual comments like that. Well, if it makes you feel better. If you don't get it, just let it go, man.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why are you going for a personal attack instead of just explaining what you're talking about? It makes me think that you haven't really thought things through before posting. If you put your opinion out there you are pretty much consenting to have it scrutinized, and your initial post seemed a lot like a strawman argument, so I was interested in figuring out what you exactly meant.

Edited by Tensei

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Why are you going for a personal attack instead of just explaining what you're talking about?

'Just let it go' was a personal attack in your book? I don't really know what I did to make it personal with you, but that was not my intent. If you truly didn't understand and wanted to know what I meant, you did a terrible job with starting a civil discussion IMO. But I'll have no hard feelings, tensei.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
'Just let it go' was a personal attack in your book? I don't really know what I did to make it personal with you, but that was not my intent. If you truly didn't understand and wanted to know what I meant, you did a terrible job with starting a civil discussion IMO. But I'll have no hard feelings, tensei.

Well, for one you call me 'genius' in a sarcastic fashion, and then you imply that I have too much spare time. Seems pretty personal from where I'm standing!

I mean, it's not like you HAVE to explain yourself if you don't actually have an adequate argument to back up what you said earlier, but if you're going to join an online discussion it might help to think things through before you post! You definitely seem pretty eager to steer things away from what you said in your initial post, so I'll let it slide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well, for one you call me 'genius' in a sarcastic fashion, and then you imply that I have too much spare time. Seems pretty personal from where I'm standing!

I mean, it's not like you HAVE to explain yourself if you don't actually have an adequate argument to back up what you said earlier, but if you're going to join an online discussion it might help to think things through before you post! You definitely seem pretty eager to steer things away from what you said in your initial post, so I'll let it slide.

Don't know what to tell you. Hope you feel you've accomplished something there. I'll just go and think things through now, maybe next time I'll be worthy to post something in your online discussion.... Wait.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You're right that there's a distinction between the hero's perspective and the player's perspective, but that is where to me the problem lies. In older games where the plot and characters really aren't expanded upon, we as the players don't actually know why Mario wants to save Princess Toadstool, because she doesn't really appear or do anything in the game. The way the game presents it really is just "X got stolen from you, go retrieve it/her", and that's where the problem lies.

I thought the golden wrench analogy was brilliant, but it's actually unnecessary because we have a real example to work with. In Super Mario Land 2, Wario steals Mario's castle (yes, that's right, his Marioland stronghold), which spurs on the action of the game. So in SML 2, the "damsel" is literally an object, and it made zero difference to the player (and, presumably, to Mario).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The thing is, sexism doesn't have to be intentional (neither does racism) to be considered sexism, but it's hard to talk about the 'milder' examples because it's so insidious. If a job interviewer, without realizing, hires more men than women in spite of their equal qualifications, he's not being actively malicious (since he doesn't even realize it), but he is being sexist.

So the parallel here, if I'm reading your example right, is that even if there was no sexism involved in choosing a woman to be in need of rescuing, it's still sexist to have used it because it happened repeatedly (which I believe MC Final Sigma also put forth). If that's the case, then, again, I'm not seeing eye to eye with that assertion. It's putting sexism where none was intended or implied, and pointing at someone while saying "YOU'RE A BAD PERSON!" when no ill intent was present.

Now, I know what at least a few are thinking. You're thinking, "It doesn't make them a bad person, it just says what they did was bad," or something similar. But there's no positive or gentle spin to put on the term "sexism" when it's thrown out there, as its stigma carries a lot of injustice and anger with it due to the history behind it. So the accusation still puts them in a rather bad light unfairly, kind of like how someone accused of rape can be proven to be 100% innocent, but the stigma of that accusation follows them anyway. As such, it's not a word to be thrown about lightly, and to me, calling the "damsel" trope sexist is really stretching what falls under that term.

You're right that there's a distinction between the hero's perspective and the player's perspective, but that is where to me the problem lies. In older games where the plot and characters really aren't expanded upon, we as the players don't actually know why Mario wants to save Princess Toadstool, because she doesn't really appear or do anything in the game. The way the game presents it really is just "X got stolen from you, go retrieve it/her", and that's where the problem lies.

Here's the problem; Peach wasn't Mario's. The story goes, Koopas invaded, turned the Mushroom Kingdom people into various objects using black magic, and Peach is the only one who can undo the spell that was used. She's captured by Bowser, and Mario goes off to try and save her.

There's no "she's mine" involved on the hero's part, and Bowser likely locked her away to stop her (it's implied that she can't undo the magic as a prisoner, but not flat out stated). So you're analogy (and MC Final Sigma's) doesn't work to me, because the story is in place, even if it's only in the manual. The gameplay may not differ, but the reasoning behind the gameplay does, and that makes a world of difference... again, to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Coop, your argument here brings to mind a passage from this article (emphasis mine):

Racism is a systemic, societal, institutional, omnipresent, and epistemologically embedded phenomenon that pervades every vestige of our reality. For most whites, however, racism is like murder: the concept exists but someone has to commit it in order for it to happen. This limited view of such a multilayered syndrome cultivates the sinister nature of racism and, in fact, perpetuates racist phenomena rather than eradicates them. Further, this view of racism disguises its true essence, thus allowing its tenets to proliferate.

replace the words "whites" with "men", "racism" with "sexism" - or just about any other form of institutionalized discrimination - and the argument remains the same. the idea that sexism exists only in those acts or utterances perpetrated by evil, sexist people is one which mistakes the nature of sexism in the first place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So the parallel here, if I'm reading your example right, is that even if there was no sexism involved in choosing a woman to be in need of rescuing, it's still sexist to have used it because it happened repeatedly (which I believe MC Final Sigma also put forth). If that's the case, then, again, I'm not seeing eye to eye with that assertion. It's putting sexism where none was intended or implied, and pointing at someone while saying "YOU'RE A BAD PERSON!" when no ill intent was present.

Now, I know what at least a few are thinking. You're thinking, "It doesn't make them a bad person, it just says what they did was bad," or something similar. But there's no positive or gentle spin to put on the term "sexism" when it's thrown out there, as its stigma carries a lot of injustice and anger with it due to the history behind it. So the accusation still puts them in a rather bad light unfairly, kind of like how someone accused of rape can be proven to be 100% innocent, but the stigma of that accusation follows them anyway. As such, it's not a word to be thrown about lightly, and to me, calling the "damsel" trope sexist is really stretching what falls under that term.

I think we have a different understanding of the term then. I don't think sexism implicitly refers to very overt, intentionally malicious actions (the terms usually reserved for that are misandry/misogyny). To me, it literally just means treating someone differently based on their gender.

In that sense, even inconspicuous actions such as holding a door open for a girl can be sexist, though they're probably not particularly harmful by themselves. That's what I meant when I said that sexism is very insidious; everyone has probably done something like that in the past, but it doesn't automatically make them a bad person or anything.

Ultimately, however, it's all the tiny little things that add up and shape society as a whole, which can eventually result in some nasty incidents such as the harassment Anita got for making this series, or the 'feminist whore' in Dead Island.

Edited by Tensei

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This thread is still going? I swear I've seen the same points being made over and over again. And still almost no input from women. Why does that always happen in threads relating to sexism, women, and video games? When a women does post, very few people respond. It's a shame.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This thread is still going? I swear I've seen the same points being made over and over again. And still almost no input from women. Why does that always happen in threads relating to sexism, women, and video games? When a women does post, very few people respond. It's a shame.

So what's your point?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.