@spaceinsomniac: I always find that Giant Bomb users make my points so much better than I can in these debates. Thank you for your eloquence.
Pudge's forum posts
@devise22: The difference, at least in my eyes, is that Hatred wasn't given an opportunity in this culture. Sure, GAF and other sites have a right to bar discussion of any topic they chose, but Hatred was given more power than it ever deserved by its censorship. It's a game, and a gaming outlet should foster discussion of any and all games. Instead, they added fuel to the tire fire and made it a top seller for at least a few days. It's idiotic and does nothing but hold the critical voices back if we have moral police sanctioning what is and isn't OK.
There is always the option to comment elsewhere yes, but if the top forums for discussion deny a topic, all that does it get the wrong people riled up and fuel indignation. It's a clear sign that gaming culture in all areas needs to grow up, not just the AAA developers.
@bollard: It may be moot now considering how few updates Team Fortress 2 gets nowadays, but adding in female equivalents to the mercenaries would only require a few voice acting sessions and the in game models. You would have to keep most of the animations the same because the classes in that game are designed by their body shape. If they didn't want to do the work, there are at least five mods that have added female mercs to the game in fully playable form.
I do agree that I think Austin fails to give the Internet credit for putting pressure on studios, and in certain situations I think it becomes unwarranted. It's really a case by case basis, but in most cases I'd usually prefer that a studio stick to their guns rather than submit to an Internet lynch mob from either side of the debate.
@milkman: I agree, but on the same token you're not going to rile up an angry mob because a game doesn't have dodge rolling. The reaction is the focus here. People who don't like how a game controls will just play another game. People who don't like a game's content but finds it fun will feel like they're being preached to, and they'll be much more likely to strike out against the game to save it from whatever forces are ruining it. In their eyes anyway. That may be a shortsighted way to look at things, but it's valid, and they're the type of people that fuel this hateful discussion and prevent everyone from looking at things logically.
I want to push back on the idea that having better controls is something completely testable. If you compare the controls of a game like DMC and Monster Hunter for example, one game favors canceling and movement over animation priority while the other game favors animation over snappy controls. Both of those games are ostensibly third person action games with a focus on combat, yet they feel and control very differently because of the goals of the developers. Neither game has better controls so much as they have different controls and different goals. Until recently American reviewers panned the hell out of Monster Hunter in part because its controls ran so counter to the conventions of most 3D action games. However, as writers have gotten more used to unconventional control schemes and games that put an emphasis on sluggish animations, the reviews of MH games have gotten better.
So I would say that you can't turn the good control button on and off either. Those elements of games are also evaluated based on the values of the culture who makes them and the culture that consumes them.
OK, maybe I was being a bit simplistic in favor of my point, but I will say that there are plenty of examples of good controls out there for developers to take note of, and it's something that most people seem to agree upon in most cases on a per series basis. And even if they don't, developers can offer button mapping and alternate control schemes for those customers. I don't think it would be as easy to patch in well written female characters.
I'm basically saying that it's a much easier problem to fix and most people who would be able to fix it are already in place at game studios big and small.
This is awesome, Austin.
The "stop forcing game developers to change their games" bit is something that always, always just makes me roll my eyes and throw my hands up. There's no difference between saying "this game should have been representation" and "this game should have better controls." They're both just criticisms, something that everyone here at Giant Bomb is ostensibly (sup Patrick) paid to do. One is just seen as an acceptable criticism that can be made about games and the other isn't because until recently, no one really thought about how games handled women/race/miniority/whatever issues.
A game having better controls is a pretty binary thing that can be tested. A game having better representation is complicated and requires a lot of forethought, at least in something story based like The Witcher 3. You can't just turn the racist switch to the off position, you have to have people that can write dialogue for different races and genders, you sometimes have to frame stories in a different way depending on who you include. If you just put in people of different races that act exactly like white people, some might call you out for being racist that way, because it doesn't feel right. The same thing going in the opposite direction.
If it's not a story game, it's a lot easier. Team Fortress 2 should really have female equivalents for the mercenaries for example, there's no reason not to include those. But if your story based game is being written by mostly white dudes, that's a lot of what you're going to get, because the alternative is horrible stereotypes that are worse than not having representation at all. At least in my opinion.
I would argue that there are some outlets and personalities out there that certainly wield their power to influence and incentivize developers. Maybe not the proper websites, but on YouTube and more social platforms, you have people actively encouraging their fanbases to attack games and developers or to boycott based on perceived wrongdoings. One only has to go back to Hatred to see certain outlets completely refuse to cover or even acknowledge that a thing exists. I still can't post anything about Hatred on NeoGAF for example. I don't even like the game or want to talk about it, but censoring a game from discussion is an attempt to hold that game down and encourage the developers to make something more in line with their standards down the line so that they do get the exposure. It's one of the reasons Giant Bomb is a great site 95% of the time, they cover things, give opinions, and ultimately let the viewer decide if they're being idiots or not.
If we could have these conversations in a civil manner without childish attacks and trashing reputations, I think we'd get a lot farther. In practice though, I think it's the developer's job to make they art they want to make, and it's the consumers and critic's job to judge if that art is something worthwhile. Steven Seagal still makes direct to video movies on occasion, they're still pretty good if you like Seagal, but generally the public has moved on from that. No one took away the Seagal movies, they just stopped being feasible to release in theaters. If someone was yelling at how violent Under Siege was in the 90s, people would have reacted the same way.
Under Siege 2
----------------------------- Movies you should stay away from. Right answer will always be Beverly Hills Cop I & Die Hard.
Why the disrespect for Casey Ryback, military chef? You've seen him outrun a train right?
You've got three great examples right there, so let me point you in the direction of some other "classics". The first few Steven Seagal movies (Above The Law, the Under Seige duology) are something special if you like how Arnold in Commando is basically an unstoppable force. If you just want more good Arnold, go to The Running Man, Total Recall, and/or True Lies. There's a reason that Giant Bomb has that Cobra poster, and Sly is also great in Demolition Man. If you want some cheese with your Sly, go to his version of Judge Dredd first, and then if you love that then you're ready for the arm wrestling opus Over The Top. Other random suggestions for a good time: Bloodsport, Big Trouble In Little China, Road House, Vampire$ (the one directed by John Carpenter), and of course Robocop. I assume you've probably seen Robocop.
But if you haven't go see Robocop.