Is anyone else a little bit insulted by Nier's protagonist?

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#1 Posted by GruntSavage (16 posts) -

So, we all know that Square Enix published two different versions of Nier, one for the Western markets and one for the Japanese market, and the only real difference (as far as I know) is the protagonist. In Nier Replicant (the Japanese version) the protagonist is a typical slightly androgynous young man who's trying to save his sister. In Nier Gestalt (the Western version), he's a big, burly, and oh-so ugly man who's fighting for his daughter.  
 Now, does anyone else feel kind of insulted that Cavia thought that this ugly man would appeal more to us than a typical JRPG protagonist? I'm just wondering whether I'm alone in this or not. 

#2 Edited by august (3824 posts) -
@GruntSavage:  Square made it sound like the older protagonist was Cavia's original, while the younger one was created specifically for Japan afterwards. Because apparently a significant portion of the Japanese gamplaying populace is unable to identify with an adult.
#3 Posted by xyzygy (9867 posts) -

Are you serious? This is actually a really cool idea. The older guy looks cooler though. Just because he's different than the regular old 17 year old protagonist.

#4 Posted by august (3824 posts) -

It was so hard being a kid in the 8-bit era. How was I supposed to identify with Simon Belmont when the guy only wore one belt?

#5 Posted by nanikore (2740 posts) -

No, because I'm not an easily insulted pansy who has to find something negative in everything.

#6 Posted by cap123 (2477 posts) -

I would say there were correct in assuming we'd prefer an ugly, more realistic man than some half woman-half man pansy. I wish more main characters were more realistic.

#7 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -

I wouldnt really care

#8 Posted by Ghostiet (5208 posts) -

No, because I find that bulky, old-ass ugly everyman far easier to relate to than a crackwhore with emo make-up.

#9 Posted by eroticfishcake (7782 posts) -

It's a minor issue really though to be honest I never really did appeal to young, healthy teenagers wielding weapons/magic and saving the world like most JRPGs ever did regardless of my age. Nier's Gestalts protagonists I can relate to much more since he's such a depressing fucker.

#10 Posted by Shinri (534 posts) -


Funny. I'm seeing a trend start to appear. 
 
Western auidence complains about an aspect of Japanese games.

Japanese devs try to appeal to Western audience more by changing said aspect. 
Western audience complains. 
 
It's happening more and more lately.

#11 Edited by august (3824 posts) -

I have a hard time believing anything in Nier was compromised to appeal to anyone, anywhere. 
 
You know guys, it is possible that the dudes at Cavia made a game about a man trying to save his daughter because they wanted to make a game about a man trying to save his daughter. Crazy, I know! 
 
EDIT: Except, obviously, the whole deal where they made a whole other version some people in Japan with a kid protagonist. But Square made it sound like that was their idea.

#12 Posted by Catolf (2653 posts) -
@Shinri said:
"


Funny. I'm seeing a trend start to appear. 
 
Western auidence complains about an aspect of Japanese games.

Japanese devs try to appeal to Western audience more by changing said aspect. 
Western audience complains. 
 
It's happening more and more lately.

"
This.
 
Square is trying to address all the complaint and give us something different and they people STILL complain. They can't win for losing. It's stupid, when game developers finally start listening and try to address it, you hear whining. It's annoying.. and bull.
#13 Posted by OllyOxenFree (4970 posts) -

herp derp japanese games always have feminine teenaged protagonists.  japanese games sucks herp derpity derp
 
What?!?  Why do they put a big ugly mofo in the US version??? Insult!!!

#14 Posted by mutha3 (4985 posts) -
@OllyOxenFree said:
" herp derp japanese games always have feminine teenaged protagonists.  japanese games sucks herp derpity derp  What?!?  Why do they put a big ugly mofo in the US version??? Insult!!! "
@Ghostiet said:
"

No, because I find that bulky, old-ass ugly everyman far easier to relate to than a crackwhore with emo make-up.

"
This.
 
Actually, its the art for the protagnist, thats making me interested in the game more then anything.
 
I'd love to see more of this type of protagonist. Both East and West.
#15 Posted by Meowayne (6084 posts) -


 Now, does anyone else feel kind of insulted that Cavia thought that this ugly man would appeal more to us than a typical JRPG protagonist?

 
Judging from the regular, daily threads of westeners who feel their manliness and sexuality threatened by JRPG protagonists and list them as  primary reasons for not playinig certain games... no. No, I think doing this was the right move. Sad, but not insulting.
 
Now female characters in games.. there's something to feel insulted about.
 
#16 Posted by HatKing (5768 posts) -
@GruntSavage said:
"So, we all know that Square Enix published two different versions of Nier, one for the Western markets and one for the Japanese market, and the only real difference (as far as I know) is the protagonist. In Nier Replicant (the Japanese version) the protagonist is a typical slightly androgynous young man who's trying to save his sister. In Nier Gestalt (the Western version), he's a big, burly, and oh-so ugly man who's fighting for his daughter.   Now, does anyone else feel kind of insulted that Cavia thought that this ugly man would appeal more to us than a typical JRPG protagonist? I'm just wondering whether I'm alone in this or not.  "

Wait.  Offensive to the west or to the Japanese?  Or both?  Keep in mind the cultural insensitivity of the developers at Square Enix.  I don't think they realize they're doing anything weird here.  It is just normal for them.
#17 Posted by Ragdrazi (2283 posts) -
@Shinri said:
"


Funny. I'm seeing a trend start to appear. 
 
Western auidence complains about an aspect of Japanese games.

Japanese devs try to appeal to Western audience more by changing said aspect. 
Western audience complains. 
 
It's happening more and more lately.

"
 You're getting two camps confused here. There's a sort of JRPG loyalist faction that says "Please Square, change nothing!" And there's the rest of us who are tired of the rehash. The first camp was the main audience in the US for the longest time, so there was no reason to for Square to change. But that only made the second camp grow. Now that the second camp is the main audience, the first camp feels betrayed by any small concession. JRPGs were their thing that only they understood for the longest time. Really this doesn't have anything to do with Japanese devs at all. All that's happening is that two American audiences are fighting, and the new minority audience is upset at being deposed.
 
They can suck it.
#18 Posted by raphaa00 (133 posts) -

This is not entirely truth.
 
Both version were released in Japan, being Nier Gestalt for Xbox 360 and Nier Replicant for PS3.
 
For the rest of the world, only Nier Gestalt were released, despite plataform.

#19 Edited by Jeust (10449 posts) -

I was thinking of writting a blog about this... 
 
i for once prefer the older uglier version in the sense that i feel much more connected to a father that wants to save his own child caring less about everything else, than someone's brother with a sister complex.  

#20 Edited by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -
@nanikore said:

" No, because I'm not an easily insulted pansy who has to find something negative in everything. "

Holy shit! What you said was amazing. I shall follow you. 
 EDIT: And if t bothers you so much then you should buy the Japanese version
#21 Posted by TheMustacheHero (6655 posts) -
@nanikore said:
" No, because I'm not an easily insulted pansy who has to find something negative in everything. "
You don't find something negative, you just bring it to the table.
#22 Posted by TheHBK (5458 posts) -

Something to try to get people to buy the game.  Because I mean, really, how many of us want to play as a little punk bitch who is an estrogen pill away from being Sailor Moon?
#23 Edited by vidiot (2737 posts) -

What a strange/weird/forward thinking/backward thinking decision.
 
It's hard for me to construct a solid opinion on how I view this. I don't like it when Japanese developers think they need to dramatically alter concepts from their game in order to appease the western audience. Nine times out of ten, such decisions have worked counter to the overall product. It's like they threw in the towel with this one, and yet they didn't. They went out of their way to not have the main character your typical emo-laden teen, but by contrast has made a main character that has been lambasted in numerous reviews for being ridiculously ugly. It's like their grasping at concepts that they don't get, and making hilarious over-generalizations. Then again, we certainly do the same. Japanese gamers like girly emo-centric annoying characters while Western gamers like balding anger-ridden steroid poping dipshits.
 
I'm actually kinda conflicted. I understand the appeasement to gamers who can't stand that type of culturally infused character, but at the same time I feel like this is their way of....find the right word.....surrendering? That seems a bit harsh, but a lack of confidence is certainly on display here to go to that level of change. At the same time, I don't feel like this game is going to do well reaching out to gamers outside of it's niche surroundings....so....yeah
 
This is just strange. :P

#24 Edited by yinstarrunner (1181 posts) -

I prefer Old Nier, and I like the fact that he's not hot.  The man's been through the wringer, and you can tell just by looking at his face.  It also seems to fit with the game's tone better than some typical JRPG teenage protagonist would.  I don't know what cavia's original idea for the story was going to be, for all we know, old man Nier could have been the one they wanted to make from the start. I wouldn't doubt it, since it seems like something they would do.

#25 Posted by animateria (3252 posts) -

Bum bumba bum!!!!
 
New Nier DLC confirms that you'll get to play the other protagonist in the US version!
 
Which apparently is that girl who runs around in her underwear?
 
Er... Well I guess it's good news for those who really wanted that instead of an old guy.

#26 Posted by TheHT (10795 posts) -

No because you're kinda wrong?
 
Gestalt in Japan was for the 360 and Replicant was for the PS3. When they brought it over here they just brought over Gestalt.
 
So? Well that means your whole theory of giving westerers the old gruffy pops protagonist instead of the gender slider more towards female dude is null.

#27 Posted by Symphony (1912 posts) -
#28 Posted by Raakill (870 posts) -

Insulted? No. Sounds like good business sense to me.

#29 Posted by MasturbatingBear (1781 posts) -

No, no one else is insulted.

#30 Posted by HandsomeDead (11863 posts) -

It seems more insulting that a game this bland looking is even made these days and released for full price.

#31 Posted by homewrecker (193 posts) -
@Axxol:  I can't wait to buy a Japanese PS3 and an RPG that I won't be able to read.
#32 Edited by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -
@homewrecker:  People actually do that.
#33 Edited by homewrecker (193 posts) -

oh, apparently there's going to be DLC released using the protagonist from Nier: Replicant, so look out for that if you wanted that version. 
 
 @Symphony: jesus christ that guy's voice makes me claw at my face.

#34 Edited by Jeust (10449 posts) -
@Symphony said:

" If anything about Nier is insulting, it's the dev team's complete failure at making a fishing mini-game. Even the Atari 2600 did fishing better. :P "

it isn't as bad as it was vented. It's easy actually. 
 
   
My only complain is that it's hard to see exactly when the fish bit the line.
#35 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11414 posts) -

I find the idea of a grizzled father helping his daughter far more endearing than an androgynous prettyboy helping his sister. I mean, I don't care about Nier either way, but from a narrative standpoint I find it far more interesting. 

#36 Posted by teh_pwnzorer (1482 posts) -
@GruntSavage said:
" So, we all know that Square Enix published two different versions of Nier, one for the Western markets and one for the Japanese market, and the only real difference (as far as I know) is the protagonist. In Nier Replicant (the Japanese version) the protagonist is a typical slightly androgynous young man who's trying to save his sister. In Nier Gestalt (the Western version), he's a big, burly, and oh-so ugly man who's fighting for his daughter.   Now, does anyone else feel kind of insulted that Cavia thought that this ugly man would appeal more to us than a typical JRPG protagonist? I'm just wondering whether I'm alone in this or not.  "
So what you're saying here is that a typical western JRPG player is either a pre-teen girl or a gay dude, but not the bear-gay kind. 
  
... 
 
Yes?
#37 Posted by Symphony (1912 posts) -
@Jeust said:
" @Symphony said:

" If anything about Nier is insulting, it's the dev team's complete failure at making a fishing mini-game. Even the Atari 2600 did fishing better. :P "

it isn't as bad as it was vented. It's easy actually. 
 
    
   My only complain is that it's hard to see exactly when the fish bit the line. "
Takin' my reply to a bad thread a whee bit too seriously, Jeust ;)
#38 Posted by LiquidPrince (15833 posts) -

No.

#39 Posted by Jeust (10449 posts) -
@Symphony said:
" @Jeust said:
" @Symphony said:

" If anything about Nier is insulting, it's the dev team's complete failure at making a fishing mini-game. Even the Atari 2600 did fishing better. :P "

it isn't as bad as it was vented. It's easy actually. 
 
    
   My only complain is that it's hard to see exactly when the fish bit the line. "
Takin' my reply to a bad thread a whee bit too seriously, Jeust ;) "
just a wee bit :p 
#40 Posted by masternater27 (915 posts) -
@ArbitraryWater said:
" I find the idea of a grizzled father helping his daughter far more endearing than an androgynous prettyboy helping his sister. I mean, I don't care about Nier either way, but from a narrative standpoint I find it far more interesting.  "
Exactly
#41 Posted by Arjuna (886 posts) -

I can't believe you're playing this game.  It's been critically panned.

#42 Edited by Jeust (10449 posts) -
@Arjuna said:

" I can't believe you're playing this game.  It's been critically panned. "

that doesn't mean it's bad. Something even most of the most critical reviews say is that it has a good and fresh story, something that is missing in most of the critically acclaimed games. It just generates polarizing views. 
#43 Posted by Arjuna (886 posts) -
@Jeust said:

" @Arjuna said:

" I can't believe you're playing this game.  It's been critically panned. "

that doesn't mean it's bad. Something even most of the most critical reviews say is that it has a good and fresh story, something that is missing in most of the critically acclaimed games. It just generates polarizing views.  "
  I pay attention to Joystiq, especially their podcast.  Justin McElroy is calling it one of the worst games he's ever played.  I have yet to see a review from a reputable reviewer that is even remotely positive.  Here is a funny video he posted about the fishing minigame in Nier:   http://www.joystiq.com/2010/05/03/nier-review-fail/     In their last podcast he explained that the only way someone could like this game is if they spent enough money and time on it that they can't bring themselves to realize how bad it is.
#44 Posted by Ragdrazi (2283 posts) -
@masternater27 said:
" @ArbitraryWater said:
" I find the idea of a grizzled father helping his daughter far more endearing than an androgynous prettyboy helping his sister. I mean, I don't care about Nier either way, but from a narrative standpoint I find it far more interesting.  "
Exactly "
It kind of works better for the mythic form. A brother can be confronted with his father figure. Who confronts the father figure's father figure?
#45 Posted by nohthink (1223 posts) -
@GruntSavage: Not really because "Western" people always complain about how girlie Final Fantasy male characters look. So I no. I don't find it insulting. They're just trying to target the right audience by slightly modifying something. If people don't want Square Enix to do so, they should not complain about how characters look. But we all know that's not gonna happen.
#46 Posted by Catfish666 (188 posts) -
@TheHBK said:
" Something to try to get people to buy the game.  Because I mean, really, how many of us want to play as a little punk bitch who is an estrogen pill away from being Sailor Moon? "
Coupled with the avatar picture, this one made me guffaw. 
 
But seriously, I think this design choice is just great. It's not that I'd only hate japanese androgyny and general maked up-ness but I also associate general pretty person -casting to be quite tired and unoriginal. As a rough comparison think of the casting in Avatar and any Coen brothers movie, say Fargo. Don't think about flashy effects but which one had more well defined characters with more depth? 
 
And RPGs are all about story, can't hardly think of more important aspect than characters with personality. 
 
But I guess it's a matter of taste. Me, I'm spending hours every week by my profession photoshopping post-make-up to models ad photos, which has really generated some mistrust to over-beautification.
#47 Posted by JeffGoldblum (3694 posts) -
@nanikore said:
" No, because I'm not an easily insulted pansy who has to find something negative in everything. "
Couldn't have said it better myself.
#48 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

No, but I am insulted that such a shitty game is getting press coverage.

#49 Posted by Brendan (7663 posts) -

I don't care, because Nier is below par for most Square Enix games anyway.
#50 Posted by Shirogane (3563 posts) -

But Kratos is ok huh? Or dude from the witcher? 
 
I'd be more concerned about the fact that the main "female" character essentially walks around in her underwear.
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