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2517 Comments

Eight Women, Eight Responses, and One Dead Island Riptide Statue

A collection of reactions to last week's questionable marketing tactic from a variety of women in the video game industry.

Deep Silver likely did not anticipate the intense reaction to its UK-specific Zombie Bait bundle for Dead Island Riptide when it was announced last week. The news came alongside other bundles for the sequel, but the Zombie Bait bundle received attention for a statue of a torn apart woman that featured nothing more than her bikini-wearing torso.

Deep Silver’s issued a questionable apology in response to the furor. The company did not discuss how this bundle even came into existence, and still hasn’t said whether it will be sold or not. One would hope not? I’ve asked the company for further clarification on that point, but as of publication, nothing has come back.

Here's the company's previous statement in full:

“We deeply apologize for any offense caused by the Dead Island Riptide “Zombie Bait Edition”, the collector’s edition announced for Europe and Australia. Like many gaming companies, Deep Silver has many offices in different countries, which is why sometimes different versions of Collector’s Editions come into being for North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia.

For the limited run of the Zombie Bait Edition for Europe and Australia, a decision was made to include a gruesome statue of a zombie torso, which was cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island.

We sincerely regret this choice. We are collecting feedback continuously from the Dead Island community, as well as the international gaming community at large, for ongoing internal meetings with Deep Silver's entire international team today. For now, we want to reiterate to the community, fans and industry how deeply sorry we are, and that we are committed to making sure this will never happen again.”

The story featured my own opinion on the subject, as do most pieces of content on Giant Bomb. You might have suspected part of my response, based on previous articles I’ve filed at the site, and the reaction was along the lines of the last conversation about #1reasonwhy. When I was mulling a follow-up, I didn’t want to have the same back-and-forth, and hoped to introduce some new voices.

So, I reached out to a number of women members of the video game community, and asked them to provide their individual reactions. There are voices from everywhere in games, from development to fellow writers. I didn't specifically seek out people who had expressed an opinion about Dead Island, I just figured they had one. Some chose to speak directly to what happened, some didn't. There weren't any rules.

I’m also going to start something new here. I won't guarantee it’ll happen every time, but for big features, I want to make sure there’s a dedicated time slot for spending time responding to comments. It won’t happen until the story has been up for a little while, and people have had a chance to digest it. In this case, it’s going to be for 30 minutes at 11:30 a.m. PST. As always, anything I don’t get to can be addressed in PM, on Twitter, or through my Tumblr site.

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Rhianna Pratchett, writer (Tomb Raider, Mirror’s Edge)

I’m both a horror fan, and a Dead Island fan. But my initial reaction to Riptide’s mutilated torso was one of shock, bewilderment and confusion. I wasn’t morally outraged. It was more a deep sigh and eye roll of “Oh come on… really? REALLY?” Yes, horror and sex have been intertwined forever, but there was something about the visual depiction of this one that was unexpectedly disgusting for a number of reasons. A mutilated corpse (of either sex) is pretty disturbing, sure. A sexed-up (and there no other way to describe the perfectly round, barely covered up and non-zombified knockers) female corpse, offered up as a reward, has particularly nasty connotations. Especially when combined with the fact that it’s described as 'bait'--a confusing title for what was apparently meant to be (according to the developers) a zombie’s torso, rather than the mutilated and cut up human torso that it actually looked like. Zombies are not normally known for the penchant to chew down on the flesh of other zombies.

I’m accustomed to game companies marketing towards men. But rarely is it quite so blatantly i.e. "Here are some tits!" It’s a mistake to ignore the legions of female gamers out there, who enjoy their zombie killing just as much as the guys. It’s an even bigger mistake to outright annoy them. Believe me, I know this. I’ve got first-hand experience of being caught-up with a video games "controversy" on Tomb Raider, and so I know that marketing and the way we speak about and depict our characters and games is important. Industry and player debate about how we go about this is also valuable.

I was glad to see Deep Silver apologising for this rather large misstep, although I was a little perplexed by the fact that they seemed to use the fact that players apparently do this in the game (or at least have the option to) as some kind of get-out-of-jail card. I’ve done some horrendous things in games. I don’t particularly want to see them immortalised in statue form.

There’s been a lot of talk about whether it would have been okay if it was a male statue. But the fact that it isn’t (and we can only really talk about what we’ve been presented with, not what we haven’t) combined with the way the torso’s been depicted, strongly suggests that the marketeers would never have done that. A sexed-up male torso (and even with a six-pack it’s not quite the same) wouldn’t have appealed to the intended audience (straight men) in the same way. If they’d wanted to keep up this mutilated torso theme then a male torso and female torso, leaning against each other in zombie-baiting harmony, would’ve been a better way to go about it. And, given that the first game had a 50/50 male to female ratio of player characters and a similar ratio in the AI, rather more in keeping with the general tone of the game.

Better still, something like AMC’s Walking Dead collector’s edition head would have been more appropriate and arguably less offensive.

Follow more of Rhianna's work at www.rhiannapratchett.com and on Twitter.

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Clarice Meadows, writer and former sales operation manager at Take-Two Interactive

When marketing departments come up with various tchotchkes to get people to buy a video game, there are a lot of factors that come into it. Theme, desirability, originality, and more. It's a matter of making something unusual and interesting enough, and yet appropriately themed for the game, that fans will absolutely HAVE to buy it. I like to think that there are focus groups involved in the choice of object, or at the very least more than just a bunch of marketing types being locked in a room for days fueled by caffeine and junk food until they come up with an idea and are let out. Sadly, I am pretty sure the latter is usually the case. The zombie torso created specifically for Dead Island Riptide was, in my opinion, a marketing catastrophe. I've heard many responses to this particular item. From "well women don't play games anyway" to "by getting mad about it and yelling, you guys are giving this company free advertising" to "it's like a classical sculpture of antiquity, but a zombie!" So let's break this down a bit.

1) I am a woman, and I play video games. I am not particularly unusual in my gender group in choosing to play video games. I grew up in the 80s, video games were around, and I liked them. I also happen to know quite a few other women who play games, including games like Dead Island. By ignoring women as a market demographic for a video game, companies are losing out hugely. By assuming women will only buy pink, glittery items or games that are about clothing and boyfriends, these companies are losing money. By putting out a completely sexist and crass marketing ploy, they are losing money. Seriously, isn't the point of triple-A games to make scads of cash? I really don't get making choices that lead to losing it instead, can you tell?

2) By yelling about something offensive, we're making a case that offensive marketing is unacceptable. By not yelling, we're giving silent consent to continuing crappy and cheap marketing choices. And trust me, this is crappy, cheap AND lazy marketing. Oh look, a pair of boobs! How innovative! Apparently these marketers think the only people playing video games are under-sexed pubescent mole men. I mean… seriously? Lazy.

3) The last time I checked, classical sculptures did not have boob jobs. Also, the last time I checked, real boobs did not do that while in a string bikini. There's this thing called gravity… And if we're going to have an argument that this torso is not overly sexed up and has turned a live woman (or live lady zombie) into a bunch of sex organs, then… well… someone is lying to themselves. Is it appropriate? Is necrophilia really acceptable now? Because that's what this feels like it's promoting to me.

Lazy and cheap marketing ploys don't make money, they cost money in PR nightmares and hours of dancing around apologizing. It doesn't take much to be smarter, and who knows? Maybe a new market full of lots of money will open up and be willing to spend that money on video games! I mean, didn't you hear that women have jobs and make money and LOVE to spend it? Think big video game companies. Think about all that cash you're letting slide right through your fingers, and play it smarter.

Follow more of Clarice's work at Plays Like a Girl and on Twitter.

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Kate Lorimer, composer and writer

For my part, yes, I found it offensive, it was “the straw that broke the camel’s back” (though I am sure it won't be the last such incident) after a year of dodgy marketing (Hitman, Booth Babes, Tomb Raider, Girlfriend Mode, Anita Sarkeesian). And from a personal viewpoint, even a close friend expressing his being fed up with online “outrage” and “Feminist point-scoring pandering” from game websites like Rock Paper Shotgun--his words--and his complete (and somewhat deliberate) misunderstanding of the concept of Feminism (being supposedly more about pursuing Women’s interests above male's, as opposed to actually being about equality for both genders).

Unfortunately, amongst teens and younger players in general (but as Jenny Haniver has shown, far from exclusively) there’s likely to be a kneejerk reaction backlash at the outrage and offence caused by it, as kids love a bit of blood'n'gore, and certainly amongst the heterosexual hormone fueled boys that whole “cor... boobies” thing has an attraction. See: http://www.southparkstudios.com/clips/153593/yes-ah-tah

The reasons for it being offensive are obvious to the clear of thought--it's objectification at its worst. Remove the person from the body, inexplicably leaving a pubescent boy’s idea of the perfect female figure, with balloon boobs (mysteriously untouched by hungry zombie snacking) and a peek at a panty enclosed crotch--of course, hiding the vagina within--which would likely be too offensive/edgy to the same boys!

Would the situation have been mitigated had there been an alternative option of a male torso? It might have slightly balanced the equality issue, though of course there is a special obsession with boobies--especially globe-tastic ones on an itty bitty waist! But the fact that it's just a female torso they decided to go with speaks volumes about their marketing, and the usual narrow-minded targeted demographic. It might have been just as grisly but slightly more in line with the zombie ethos to have had a scary looking zombie head?

Follow more of Kate's work at K8-bit and on Twitter.

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Elizabeth DeLoria, staff writer at Gameranx and cosplay photographer

In September last year, Jill Meagher, a 29-year-old ABC employee, went missing while walking the short walk home from a popular Melbourne street. Thanks to a somewhat viral social media campaign, the entire country began to follow the case, people everywhere wanting Jill to be found alive and well and brought home.

When she was found murdered, buried in a shallow roadside grave after being kidnapped and sexually assaulted by a complete stranger, the entire country went from hopefully to angry. Angry that someone would do this, angry that she wasn't alive and well as we'd hoped, angry that she was minding her own business in her own suburb when she was attacked. People were so angry that when the alleged killer's name leaked, social media erupted with people from every walk of life wanting his head. An entire nation was in mourning, and thousands in Melbourne marched in her honor.

I mention this because we know it's not okay to kill people. We're angered and heartbroken when women are violently murdered (and that's just the cases we hear about.) The news of Jill Meagher, as an example, was devastating to thousands that didn't even know her. Yet at the same time, we're sent these messages that sexualize, glamorize and exploit a woman's decapitated torso. That use violent murder for the purpose of sex appeal and thus profit.

When I see the same people who I saw march for Jill, whose heart sank when they heard the news of her death ask me why this torso statue is "such a big deal," I don't even know how to begin to explain to them how they've come so close to the right thing, yet they sit so far from it.

I'm not really offended, I'm just mortified at how easily we seem to forget.

Follow more of Elizabeth's work at Gameranx and on Twitter.

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Vanessa Hunter, artist and game design graduate

We need to start at the beginning if we are to stop the pervasiveness of sexism in gaming culture, and by sticking this statue in a set that will be received by kids and young adults, Deep Silver is reinforcing an already warped attitude toward women held by the gaming community.

If this statue had been reminiscent of Venus de Milo or the statue of David, and posed in a beautiful, creative way, perhaps I could have even admired it. But as a hunk of flesh plopped into a lifeless pose and trussed up in a string bikini, I seriously have to question the thought behind it.

My main reaction to this statue, however, is that it presents a woman as a literal piece of dead meat. It beheads all personality and life and strips away individuality to present the viewer with what is simply a hunk of flesh in a gaudy bikini. This figure gets up and screams "all I am worth is to fulfill your pleasures"

To a woman like me, it's sickening because it represents how some men see real-life women every day.

From someone who has seen firsthand how a monster who holds this attitude can choke the life out of someone beautiful and radiant, this bust is a nightmare come true. And what's worse is that the attitudes behind such an object reinforce this behaviour as okay.

As for Deep Silver's "apology" placing the blame on its fan base, many of whom view them as a role model, teaching them that sexism is okay if someone else has done it before is unacceptable. They need to grow up.

Follow more of Vanesssa's work through Instagram and on Twitter.

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Anonymous

I didn't feel offended by the Dead Island bikini statue. I did, however, find it quite tiresome. I don't think that it can be denied that the statue is an obvious example of sexual objectification--a mutilated torso with perfectly untouched breasts.

Sexual objectification of women is everywhere, and it's impact is a massive discussion that goes way beyond video games. What I found most tiresome about the statue wasn't the objectification but that making a statue such as this suggests a number of things that Deep Silver assumes about their audience. They assume that the audience are young shallow men whose main interests are tits and violence. It's insulting to men and its a common assumption in video game marketing. Women are not even considered as part of the possible audience. It's outdated thinking.

I've been playing video games since I was a kid, and it's probably the main thing I do for entertainment. I have as many female friends as male who play video games. It is tiresome to be constantly excluded--and if I am included then I am considered a novelty. Women who play games are a sizable chunk of the audience and have been around for as long as video games. Objects like this statue show that we are not really considered to exist.

This individual chose not to share their personal information for fear of potential backlash.

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Melissa Cooke, writer for FemmeGamer

Personally, I think that it's rather disgusting that Deep Silver decided to sell this. The usage of a female chest and abdomen I assume was originally used as a shock tactic to grab the eyes of the media, obviously this has worked, but what made it sexist in my eyes was the way it was dressed up and the proportions on the body.

The breasts are very unrealistic in the way they're being held up by a string bikini, not to mention that there are no wounds on the breasts, making them all the more obvious.The stomach is also very flat, and the bust looks almost anorexic, which is a very damaging image to promote.

The bust lacks also a face or any other feature that makes this bust look human, which could be interpreted as Deep Silver saying "Look this isn't a human, it's a woman, look how her breasts are positioned for your enjoyment, isn't that cool?"

Overall, this is a rather shameless grab for attention on Deep Silver's part, and all this sort of stunt does is give the non-gaming public the idea that games and the people who are playing them are immature, and push any progress the industry has made back a few more years.

Follow Melissa's work at Femme Gamer and on Twitter.

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Anna Kipnis, senior gameplay programmer at Double Fine Productions

It's really hard to approach this topic in any kind of novel way. At this point, it's hard to bring round people who have made their minds up that feminism threatens to ruin their entertainment; to convince them that it's troubling to have games openly revel in dismembering decomposing women in bikinis. Yet I don't believe in censorship, either. Personally, I push this sort of thing into the same category in my brain as boob mugs (which I respect more for at least cutting to the chase and showing actual nudity). I'm not sure why someone would want a headless, bloody, dismembered corpse of a woman's upper torso, with grotesquely fake boobs obscured by a sadly implicated union jack proudly displayed on their mantle, but they're not a person I can imagine seeing eye-to-eye with on many things.

I honestly believe you can have sexiness and violence in games, even at the same time, if that's what you want. I can't think of a great example of a game that has done this particularly well (no doubt there is one), but there are many examples in film. For instance, Quentin Tarantino has made plenty of movies over the years that feature sexy women in violent situations. Even women getting dismembered (Kill Bill Volume 1, Death Proof), and yet it's never felt sexist or misogynist to me. I walk away from the theater generally thinking of those women as role models, not victims.

I think it's on us, game developers, to prevent controversies like this one. I'm a game programmer and I would be pretty bummed if I was working on what was essentially a game equivalent of a boob mug. You're appealing to the lowest, most vulgar aspects of your audience at a time when games are widely criticized for being juvenile, senseless, and immature, only to then complain that the medium is not being taken seriously as an art form. We should strive to treat our medium with the respect it deserves.

Follow Anna's work at Double Fine Productions and on Twitter.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
2527 Comments
Posted by Milkman
@Darji

@DazzHardy said:

It kind of saddens me that people think that not talking about these things is the best way to get them to stop. Simply ignoring the problems won't make them go away. This is one of those cases were it needs to be talked about often enough and as publicly as possible so that people understand why it's not a great idea to do dumb stuff like this. When it's been talked to death, that's when I think we'll start seeing it not come up so often, and thus not need to be spoken of so much.

No one is ignoring the problem. Yes there is sexcism yes there is sexcism regarding both genders. And yes there is certainly sexism in every media which includes games as well. But this has nothing to do with it. Not one thing on this statue is objectifying woman. It is just a tool used by extreme fems and nothing more.

I see eight women who disagree with you. What does that tell you? Are they all "extreme fems?"
Posted by JoshyLee

It's not as if there are bigger stories in the videogame industry right now. Let's talk about this statue some more. I'm glad they hired on a REAL journalist.

Posted by EnduranceFun

@rangers517 said:

@Kill: @Kill said:

When Patrick first joined Giant Bomb, he repeatedly said in his articles that he would not talk about his personal political beliefs as he did not feel they were necessary in his writing. As time went on, he started to plug his favourite political podcasts, put his liberal slant on news stories which did not require it, dropped his political opinions on the Bombcast when they wasn't asked for, and now he is actively seeking out some kind of validation for his own moral slant in the form of this article.

Look, I love Giant Bomb and I think Patrick is a great writer. However, this is nothing more than a "ha, told you so" to the community and an ego stroking by a man who believes only his political views should be noted on this site. He could at least have sought out a more balanced view of the situation. After the first three women said largely the same thing and no other viewpoint was represented, I could not help but picture that characteristic Patrick smirk behind all this.

I know this is a ramble, but I feel the other Giant Bomb guys do a great job of concealing their political ideologies. I have no idea who Brad, Jeff, Ryan or Vinny vote for. I could certainly guess, but it definitely isn't as clear as the liberal, Democrat voting, Reddit-reading klaxon of Klepek and his incessant need to spin gaming news a particular way. I find it distasteful, even if I agree with him on issues like this. It's a bit gross on a site which was founded on being impartial and fun.

Just my tl;dr opinion.

Agreed 100%. The other guys tried to keep it a light and fun video game site. No idea why Klepek thinks his views and opinions are so important that he needs to constantly share them with us.

Patrick definitely needs to back away from his articles, but this is a good start.

Edited by Live_Free_or_Die

Here we go again. Patrick trying to be a knight in shining armor for women everywhere. Why aren't there any responses from women who didn't have a problem with the statue?

Edited by Langly

I can't believe the amount of ridiculous comments on this article. This isn't something you would find on Kotaku, this is a legitimate article that focuses on the wider context of the statue and what it represents. It isn't just a stupid, harmless marketing incident. It's part of a consistent tone that emanates from the games industry and culture.

Stop blathering about militant feminism like 14 year old children.

Posted by jaks

HAY GUYS LETS FIND OUT WHAT FEMINISTS THINK OF A STATUE OF A PAIR OF BLOODY BOOBS

Seriously, just stop. Patrick, you're in touch with your feminine side. We get it. I know you're going to shake your head and lament about the state of the comments section on the internet while you pat yourself on the back for being Mr. Smartypants, but this is article really lame. Sex is used to sell basically every product in the world other than Polident. Get used to it because it isn't going to stop. That lame Dead Island statue thing was stupid because it was a stupid thing, not because it was a symbol of male chauvinism in a male dominated industry.

You are going to continue to see shit like this because hot people are still the single most effective way of selling products. You're going to continue to see sexy college ladies in bikinis and cowboy hats on beer commercials and you are going to continue to see hot ex NFL players wearing just a towel hawking Old Spice because it has been determined that a lot of women buy their husband's/boyfriend's toiletries.

So just stop.

Posted by Brodehouse

@Qlanth said:

It baffles me that even when a bunch of women deep in the gaming industry (how can you get any more hardcore into games than that?) say "Yes this is problematic" people still insist it isn't. At what point does reason and logic fail a person so much that they are looking straight at the source and keep stamping their feet and turning their head screaming "No no no I still don't see it no no no!" At what point do the rest of us see these people and realize that their actions are just as dangerous as the one they are denying happened?

If we can successfully craft and environment that is caustic to sexism and misogyny (and homophobia and transphobia and racism and etc) then, at the very least, we can drive the people pushing it forward to duck down and avoid being vocal. I for one would like to continue having hobby that isn't immediately thought of as a cultural cesspool.

You have made a misstep here.

Reason and logic are not based on offense. Neither is sexism, or racism. Because something offends you does not logically comport with it qualifying as an attack on whatever social group you happen to belong to merely on the grounds of your offense. That a women is offended at this statue does not of itself mean it is sexist against women. Sexism requires that the statue make a general statement against a social group, and this statue in particular is a little too low in expressive quality to do so. On the grounds of "it says that all women are pieces of meat for your pleasure" is as logically unsound as is saying "it says that all men do not exist". On the grounds of "it states all women should be thin and have large breasts" is as illogical as saying "it states all women should be white and apparently American".

Posted by quantumjustice

Just want to pop in and thank Patrick for being a journalist in a medium that doesn't have many of them, and get out before the insanity makes me even more angry.

Screw the haters Patrick, your a damn cool guy who's damn good at getting the scoop.

Posted by Incapability

Pro tip: If reading these articles pisses you off, don't read them.

There was a lot of mansplaination last time, about how this was totally not sexual in any way and/or at all pandering to a certain audience. It was gross then, it's gross now.

Forget everything else, consider it from this perspective:

Deep Silver has at some point made the decision that you, their potential customers, are so idiotic, easily led, horny, cheap and narrow-minded, that a fucking pair of plastic tits could make you buy their game at a premium price. Is that how you want your demographic to be represented?

Posted by WolfHazard

@JoshyLee: Holy shit you're right! how could I have been so blind! Patrick is clearly the antichrist! Your well voiced and detailed reasoning behind Patrick's fiendish deeds and overall shitty journalistic abilities have been heard. Thank you for showing me the error of my ways and horros of -The Klepek-, I was almost a fan of Giant Bomb for a minute there.

Posted by Winternet

Something something torso something something boobs something som... wait, boobs?

Posted by katelyngadd

@asantosbr: what is wrong with you?

Posted by Kaigan

Videogames!

Posted by crcruz3

@Kill said:

When Patrick first joined Giant Bomb, he repeatedly said in his articles that he would not talk about his personal political beliefs as he did not feel they were necessary in his writing. As time went on, he started to plug his favourite political podcasts, put his liberal slant on news stories which did not require it, dropped his political opinions on the Bombcast when they wasn't asked for, and now he is actively seeking out some kind of validation for his own moral slant in the form of this article.

Look, I love Giant Bomb and I think Patrick is a great writer. However, this is nothing more than a "ha, told you so" to the community and an ego stroking by a man who believes only his political views should be noted on this site. He could at least have sought out a more balanced view of the situation. After the first three women said largely the same thing and no other viewpoint was represented, I could not help but picture that characteristic Patrick smirk behind all this.

I know this is a ramble, but I feel the other Giant Bomb guys do a great job of concealing their political ideologies. I have no idea who Brad, Jeff, Ryan or Vinny vote for. I could certainly guess, but it definitely isn't as clear as the liberal, Democrat voting, Reddit-reading klaxon of Klepek and his incessant need to spin gaming news a particular way. I find it distasteful, even if I agree with him on issues like this. It's a bit gross on a site which was founded on being impartial and fun.

Just my tl;dr opinion.

Agreed.

Posted by CastleD
@Qlanth: Because men haven't been victims of sexual objectification, disenfranchisement, subjugation, and societal neglect for hundreds of years.

You're right, it's been tens of thousands of years. You just don't see it because men don't have a vagina so you don't give a crap.

Posted by Darji

@Milkman said:

@Darji

@DazzHardy said:

It kind of saddens me that people think that not talking about these things is the best way to get them to stop. Simply ignoring the problems won't make them go away. This is one of those cases were it needs to be talked about often enough and as publicly as possible so that people understand why it's not a great idea to do dumb stuff like this. When it's been talked to death, that's when I think we'll start seeing it not come up so often, and thus not need to be spoken of so much.

No one is ignoring the problem. Yes there is sexcism yes there is sexcism regarding both genders. And yes there is certainly sexism in every media which includes games as well. But this has nothing to do with it. Not one thing on this statue is objectifying woman. It is just a tool used by extreme fems and nothing more.

I see eight women who disagree with you. What does that tell you? Are they all "extreme fems?"

I do not know them personally. So what if these are eight woman? Where are these eight woman who do not think like this. . My friend for example is a female gamer and she does not think it is sexist in any form. Marcus Bears wife thinks it is stupid but not sexist. Do you reeally think that these eight woman represents the whole opinion of the gaming world?

This article is extremely one sided and that is the main issue here.

Posted by Milkman
@EnduranceFun

@rangers517 said:

@Kill: @Kill said:

When Patrick first joined Giant Bomb, he repeatedly said in his articles that he would not talk about his personal political beliefs as he did not feel they were necessary in his writing. As time went on, he started to plug his favourite political podcasts, put his liberal slant on news stories which did not require it, dropped his political opinions on the Bombcast when they wasn't asked for, and now he is actively seeking out some kind of validation for his own moral slant in the form of this article.

Look, I love Giant Bomb and I think Patrick is a great writer. However, this is nothing more than a "ha, told you so" to the community and an ego stroking by a man who believes only his political views should be noted on this site. He could at least have sought out a more balanced view of the situation. After the first three women said largely the same thing and no other viewpoint was represented, I could not help but picture that characteristic Patrick smirk behind all this.

I know this is a ramble, but I feel the other Giant Bomb guys do a great job of concealing their political ideologies. I have no idea who Brad, Jeff, Ryan or Vinny vote for. I could certainly guess, but it definitely isn't as clear as the liberal, Democrat voting, Reddit-reading klaxon of Klepek and his incessant need to spin gaming news a particular way. I find it distasteful, even if I agree with him on issues like this. It's a bit gross on a site which was founded on being impartial and fun.

Just my tl;dr opinion.

Agreed 100%. The other guys tried to keep it a light and fun video game site. No idea why Klepek thinks his views and opinions are so important that he needs to constantly share them with us.

Patrick definitely needs to back away from his articles, but this is a good start.

No, he doesn't. I like hearing his opinion.

Also Ryan and Brad voted for Obama. Sorry to ruin the illusion.
Posted by Abendlaender

@SniperXan:

And I think this is pretty sad cause there could be a good discussion wethere this is sexist or not. I for example don't think it's sexist but I'm sure as hell not gonna argue about it here cause I really don't want to be on the same "side" as the "women are taking over the world and sexism is not a real thing" crowd here. But arguing against it makes me feel like I am, so I don't even start.

Posted by heatDrive88

@RoyCampbell said:

This just screams "I needed justification for my outrage so I gathered up a handful of women's responses and regurgitated it on my LiveJour- I mean Giantbomb's front page."

You're a huge piece of shit of a person. Sorry.

Posted by Devildoll

i think marcus beer had a pretty ok view on it. skip to 4:14

Posted by dr_mantas

@Incapability said:

Pro tip: If reading these articles pisses you off, don't read them.

There was a lot of mansplaination last time, about how this was totally not sexual in any way and/or at all pandering to a certain audience. It was gross then, it's gross now.

Forget everything else, consider it from this perspective:

Deep Silver has at some point made the decision that you, their potential customers, are so idiotic, easily led, horny, cheap and narrow-minded, that a fucking pair of plastic tits could make you buy their game at a premium price. Is that how you want your demographic to be represented?

If it's not representative, people won't buy it. If it is, why do you care and deny them the right.

Also, saying "mansplanations" is insulting and a cop-out, used to make something you disagree with invalid. As are all the other insults jam packed into your post.

Edited by EnduranceFun

@quantumjustice said:

Just want to pop in and thank Patrick for being a journalist in a medium that doesn't have many of them, and get out before the insanity makes me even more angry.

Screw the haters Patrick, your a damn cool guy who's damn good at getting the scoop.

This article was good but it could be hugely improved and in an obvious way, especially on a piddly issue. But that exact kind of reporting is what makes reporting on a piddle issue interesting and not insipid.

As far as the latter goes, this is hardly a scoop and the nickname is almost ironic with how much of a slowpoke Patrick is at reporting the news. I almost never get my news fresh from Giant Bomb.

Posted by Dookysharpgun

Vanessa Hunter has said everything that needed to be said on the matter really, and it's the exact same thing that I mentioned in the previous thread about this. It's literally putting forward a headless, legless, armless corpse with two perfect breasts - effectively removing any resemblance to a woman - to market to what Deep Silver thinks is their fanbase: a collection of necrophilia-worshipping, classic 'nerds' who are so repressed and feel that women are 'against' them, that they want a representation of the perfect woman. This is not the case, this was never the case, and the fact that they go so far as to attempt to absolve themselves of all blame is shocking and stupid to an extent I can't quite fathom.

Not only is this fucking disgusting, but it paints a pretty grim picture of what Deep Silver actually think of their fans, and the industry in general. I fail to see the reason behind the backlash against the outrage, seeing as the outrage is justified. If you don't feel offended, grand, nobody is saying you should and is attempting to shame you into thinking otherwise, what they are saying is that you should understand how it makes other people feel, and take into account how it represents and affects the position women in general, instead of saying 'it doesn't offend me, why does it offend you?' or what essentially equates to: 'I didn't read the article, but I'll leave an uninformed anti-feminism comment because being progressive is dumb'. As for the guys trying to use the old: 'what if it was a man's corpse?' crap...just go away, go back to your sandbox and don't pull the girl's pigtails just because you think they get special treatment over toys. Christ.

Posted by JoshyLee

@OriginalGman: That's not offensive because Patrick didn't tell us to be offended.

Posted by dr_mantas

@heatDrive88 said:

@RoyCampbell said:

This just screams "I needed justification for my outrage so I gathered up a handful of women's responses and regurgitated it on my LiveJour- I mean Giantbomb's front page."

You're a huge piece of shit of a person. Sorry.

That's a very angry and not at all nice thing to say.

Posted by dvorak

Virtually anyone who visits this site probably thinks that's the dumbest fucking thing ever put out as promo material. Are you trying to impart some kind of lesson to someone? Deliver it to the completely fucked up marketing and PR team who let it exist. Who is this written for? All these articles you write are completely incongruous with the tone of the rest of the website, and serve no other purpose than to drive clicks from confused idiots who disagree with your common sense opinions for some reason. Go write this stuff freelance for Kotaku or something. This kind of click bait is not what GiantBomb is about.

Posted by posh

"why is patrick being all political by respecting women" i'm sorry the comments some people on here make are hilarious

Posted by SlashDance

This article is completely one-sided, but hey that's Patrick's prerogative, I'm not complaining. People should chill the fuck out.

That said, I would've liked to read some counter arguments.

Posted by EnduranceFun

@posh said:

"why is patrick being all political by respecting women" i'm sorry the comments some people on here make are hilarious

Um............... um.......... no.

Posted by Langly

@crcruz3: you realize that commenting on misogyny is not a political view, right? Do you need the definition of political?

Posted by SniperXan

@quantumjustice said:

Just want to pop in and thank Patrick for being a journalist in a medium that doesn't have many of them, and get out before the insanity makes me even more angry.

Screw the haters Patrick, your a damn cool guy who's damn good at getting the scoop.

Posted by Wraxend

Rhianna Pratchett pointed out the one thing that really bugs me about that statue and thats the fact the breasts are perfectly round and have zero damage to them. Why didn't they do a zombified skull? Or if they had their hearts set on a torso, couldn't they have made it have a shirt on or something and have the whole thing zombified instead of having this set of perfect breasts in the middle for all to see. Or made it male and this would have never been an issue to begin with.

Posted by Floope

Human evolution has stalled.

Posted by pinochet

Gamers are worthless trash

Posted by Qlanth

@quantumjustice said:

Just want to pop in and thank Patrick for being a journalist in a medium that doesn't have many of them, and get out before the insanity makes me even more angry.

Screw the haters Patrick, your a damn cool guy who's damn good at getting the scoop.

I can't agree with this more.

Posted by subyman

It would be nice to see contrasting view points. I'm male and find the statue distasteful, but I'm not outraged. We see all kinds of dumb video game merch, so it's all noise to me now.

Posted by BrianP

@SniperXan said:

@quantumjustice said:

Just want to pop in and thank Patrick for being a journalist in a medium that doesn't have many of them, and get out before the insanity makes me even more angry.

Screw the haters Patrick, your a damn cool guy who's damn good at getting the scoop.

Posted by uomoartificiale

@TopCat88 said:

It is a shallow attempt to sell more copies of their game to boys. I agree that it's daft. It is not sexist. Sexist is hating women, not hiring or promoting a woman because of gender or giving a woman a lower salary. A collectible statue of a woman (dismembered, naked, alive, dead or otherwise) isn't sexist. It is distasteful.

No matter how to you put it, "not hiring or promoting a woman because of gender or giving a woman a lower salary", it's sexist and hateful. You see sexism is a social phenomenon based on hate towards women, either explicit or implied. It doesn't matter. Not hiring a woman, "because she's a woman", it's exactly that.

Now, just saying "it's distasteful" is the kind of word juggling we don't need. The attempt to reduce the complexity and gravity of things doesn't help anyone. This case is layered with several things that make it a bad PR stunt: the statue is sexist (again, implicitly or explicitly, it doesn't matter), it's distasteful, and it's a cry for attention. These three points of view don't exclude each other.

Posted by Hef

It's a stupid collector's edition bundle of a 2 year old game that no one was going to buy. I don't look at that torso and think, "fuck yeah looking at that sexy piece of bloody torso makes me want to go objectify women".

I think, "Wow what a stupid and juvenile marketing ploy, I bet that won't sell anything".

I am more than 100% sure that every person who saw that torso immediately thought the same thing I did.

You are all quite literally making a mountain out of a molehill. No one should of even given this bundle or whatever it is a second thought.

The funny thing is this thing is never going to stop happening. As long as their is a porn industry and sexy ladies make money, there will be sex in advertising. But as we all know, it's only sexist when men do it.

Posted by Akyho

@2HeadedNinja: One part it was a joke. Two part to say Gaben is just a stupid meme some people are sick off.

Posted by RoyCampbell
@heatDrive88 said:

@RoyCampbell said:

This just screams "I needed justification for my outrage so I gathered up a handful of women's responses and regurgitated it on my LiveJour- I mean Giantbomb's front page."

You're a huge piece of shit of a person. Sorry.

Thanks. Feel free to let me in on any other insights you possess.
Posted by dr_mantas

@RobbleWobble said:

Human evolution has stalled.

@pinochet said:

Gamers are worthless trash

Both very measured, necessary comments, that bring value to the comments section.

/s

Posted by Brodehouse

@Milkman said:

@InsidiousTuna

Klepek's closing statement from a previous article on games industry sexism is exceptionally relevant.

"I’m a guy, I’ve never had to deal with any of these problems. But I’m willing to admit where there’s smoke, there’s probably fire, and listening is helpful, informative. If you don’t want to listen, you don’t have to. No one is forcing you. Just stop shouting down others who want to."

New strategy for these comments. Instead of going back and forth with people who make the same arguments over and over again, (by the way, I'm seeing a lot of familiar names from the other articles trying to shout down the sexism discussion again...very interesting, maybe that should tell us something) I'm going to point out all the posts that I agree with and make great points. Like this one!

Here's a significant problem.

When one side presents an argument that states that there is sexism in the industry, another side will make a counter-argument based on the evidence shown within the original argument (if there is any). These arguments range in quality, but there are many that rely on the logical presentation of reason and evidence to unravel spurious claims made by the original.

At this point, rather than logically identify and examine the counter-argument, the original makes such claims as "they're trying to shout me down" and "you don't have to read it if you don't like it". In this method, they completely bypass logic and prey upon red herrings; that of 'I have a right to my opinion' being irrelevant to the actual discussion at hand, or that of the very act of disagreeing in some way is a denial of free speech. Both are clear logical fallacies, and should be immediately identified as such.

Posted by TheLastGunslinger

Bravo to @PatrickKelpek for not letting this fall by the wayside and following up with a well put together piece. I'm still confused by people who didn't see this as an issue. Let's say that you don't fall into the category of people who found it offensive. Even then what about the PR debacle this is for gaming in general. Thankfully this didn't end up on Fox News or CNN like so many other missteps (real or perceived) in the gaming industry.

Posted by Darji

@Dookysharpgun said:

Vanessa Hunter has said everything that needed to be said on the matter really, and it's the exact same thing that I mentioned in the previous thread about this. It's literally putting forward a headless, legless, armless corpse with two perfect breasts - effectively removing any resemblance to a woman - to market to what Deep Silver thinks is their fanbase: a collection of necrophilia-worshipping, classic 'nerds' who are so repressed and feel that women are 'against' them, that they want a representation of the perfect woman. This is not the case, this was never the case, and the fact that they go so far as to attempt to absolve themselves of all blame is shocking and stupid to an extent I can't quite fathom.

Not only is this fucking disgusting, but it paints a pretty grim picture of what Deep Silver actually think of their fans, and the industry in general. I fail to see the reason behind the backlash against the outrage, seeing as the outrage is justified. If you don't feel offended, grand, nobody is saying you should and is attempting to shame you into thinking otherwise, what they are saying is that you should understand how it makes other people feel, and take into account how it represents and affects the position women in general, instead of saying 'it doesn't offend me, why does it offend you?' or what essentially equates to: 'I didn't read the article, but I'll leave an uninformed anti-feminism comment because being progressive is dumb'. As for the guys trying to use the old: 'what if it was a man's corpse?' crap...just go away, go back to your sandbox and don't pull the girl's pigtails just because you think they get special treatment over toys. Christ.

You have serious issues my friend. People who have bought this would not haven been classic "nerds" what ever that is. It would have been horror and expoitation fans. That is exactly what these kind of movies with zombies and gore movie represented back in the 70s, 80s and 90s.

Posted by CastleD
@Keres: Have you paid much attention to the Republican "forced transvaginal ultrasounds for all sluts and while we're at it let's redefine rape" Party lately?

No I haven't. I'm not getting into Democrat/Republican arguments. It bores me.

Posted by Milkman
@Darji

@Milkman said:

@Darji

@DazzHardy said:

It kind of saddens me that people think that not talking about these things is the best way to get them to stop. Simply ignoring the problems won't make them go away. This is one of those cases were it needs to be talked about often enough and as publicly as possible so that people understand why it's not a great idea to do dumb stuff like this. When it's been talked to death, that's when I think we'll start seeing it not come up so often, and thus not need to be spoken of so much.

No one is ignoring the problem. Yes there is sexcism yes there is sexcism regarding both genders. And yes there is certainly sexism in every media which includes games as well. But this has nothing to do with it. Not one thing on this statue is objectifying woman. It is just a tool used by extreme fems and nothing more.

I see eight women who disagree with you. What does that tell you? Are they all "extreme fems?"

I do not know them personally. So what if these are eight woman? Where are these eight woman who do not think like this. . My friend for example is a female gamer and she does not think it is sexist in any form. Marcus Bears wife thinks it is stupid but not sexist. Do you reeally think that these eight woman represents the whole opinion of the gaming world?

This article is extremely one sided and that is the main issue here.

How is it one sided? Do you think Patrick asked for their opinion and said "But only if you agree with me?" I'm sure there are women out there in the games industry who don't think it's a problem. But there are obviously a lot that do so for you to sit there and say that it's not, like you somehow know better is insulting. It's okay for you to have an opinion but you can't declare for everyone else that this isn't a problem.
Posted by StarvingGamer

Wait, so half the women writing here were complaining about the breasts look like implants... so does that mean it would have been ok if they were more naturalistic looking ones...?

Posted by SniperXan

@Abendlaender: Yeah I wish the internet could stop being the internet for a moment so we could have a real honest grown-up talk about all this because it really is something that should be discussed. It's ripe for real debate and analisis. Just probably not on the internet where the neckbeards need their boobie dolls...

Posted by BlastProcessing

@Xeirus said:

@BlastProcessing said:

At least Patrick didn't quote himself this time. Still, this progressive, Kotaku-esque clickbait shit needs to stop, It's a horrible statue made in bad taste, nothing to cry about.

I'm guessing you're a guy, who hasn't delt with sexism. You shouldn't dismiss things you have no experience with.

Well if I wanna learn more about the topic, I'd much prefer having articles that tackle both sides of the coin, and aren't sensationalist.

Why isn't there at least one argument that's from the other side of the statue debacle in this article? I'm sure myself and others would like to hear from the other side as well.