Shingro's forum posts

#1 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

The Bayonetta thing is why when anyone who is part of a social movement says "No one in X movement wants Y" I have a lot of trouble believing they've thought deeply about the matter.

Any movement of sufficient size will have people who believe all sorts of different things, and want any number of different approaches. No group of humans in history have ever been completely unanimous in intent and/or approach. It's not something to panic and back away from. That variety of approach encourages discussion and can help people on all sides refine their opinions.

I guess it's human nature to think of it in terms of winning/losing and not wanting to show weakness.

#2 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

Like always Jeff can really speak from the heart, and really craft a good letter. Top marks to him.

I do disagree that The most extreme members of GG will find another target though. Why would they? We continue to unilaterally give them exactly what they want, we signal boost their actions, making the industry feel more and more threatening for women, broadcast what they consider "Successes" and tell them how much we don't like them, but also cannot do anything about them other than wag our fingers sternly. Meanwhile they get to pretend they're the illuminati of the gaming world because they keep getting better and better 'gigs' they made the NYT front page.

From their perspective, what part of our actions as a gaming community would encourage them to go elsewhere? We're engaged in desperately making ourselves the most prime grade troll targets since the dawn of the internet.

I feel from his close that Jeff understands this but doesn't want to criticise the way we've handled this as an industry. I might be wrong, but either way it's a subtle thing.

I have the sense that jeff does know you really *don't* need to tell anyone that issuing death threats are wrong. The number of personalities that could issue death threats and not believe that's wrong is all of no one. The people who are issuing them KNOW it's wrong, they just don't CARE. Jeff's been around long enough to know this I suspect.

Here's an possibly unpopular opinion:

I do think Gamergate would have been a fart in the wind in terms of support (and considering the global numbers of gamers, it still is statistically.) If a lot of average moderate gamers felt like they could disagree with the current approaches of gaming feminism without feeling branded a "terrible human being." I feel this blew up like a a "reverse Anita kickstarter." Gamers have been steadily feeling more and more judged for their hobby from a very ill defined "problematic" viewpoint, so when this situation got to "gamers are dead" people snapped and joined whatever the "side that is not that" was, and GG welcomed them with open arms.

Only instead of getting a fairly harmless commentator we got something far rougher. Pressure begets pressure until we come to peaceful accord through discussion.

The trouble is, we've yet to work out a way we can say "I think video games are(should be) a safe fiction/fantasy space for healthy adults (of all genders)." Instead we just throw more and more mud and stones between bayonetta's sexual appeals, Dragon crown's chest size and Samus's high heel power suit.

"It's demeaning to women! It's healthy fantasy! It's sexist! It's art! Misogyny! Censorship! Tone Policing! Creator's License! Concern Trolling!"

And everything devolves into noise. We have steadily been unable to accept even the rules of engagement. Hell, the whole start of gamersgate got a serious boost because everyone locked their forums/news/etc on the conversation. By and large, we *haven't wanted to talk about it.*

Until we can find a space where we can about where sexual appeal should and shouldn't be, and let people have their safe spaces in video games, both women and sexually active men, this sort of thing will probably keep happening. It won't be gamersgate next time, but if that pressure is still there, it will continue to be expressed. In that expression, it will probably drive the worst 2-10% of that group to ugly action.

I'm not nearly so eloquent as jeff, but this is my limited understanding. I've got a limited field of experience, so please read to the end of my terrible analogy. An islamic terrorist doesn't win when they successfully hit a building, or kill a handful of humans. They win when you do what they want you to do. They also win, when full of righteous fury you start treating all followers of Islam like they're dangerous. thereby creating a negative disposition and boosting the likelihood of them joining more radical ranks.

99%+ followers of Islam are not terrorists.

Remember 99%+ gamers aren't fanatics either.

In my personal opinion, even the good guys have been both highlighting strongly the actions we've taken that GG wanted us to take, and *also* talking to the gaming community at large like it's an ugly, shameful thing awash in sin. Basically, it we're 0/2 in terms of handling them.

Gamers have pride in gaming, and they've come together to support charities in numbers which dwarf GG by a factor of ten at least. Yet many gamers feel shame over their hobby, hell, even the gaming press still pops that old "what (lie) do you tell your parents about what you do?" We're so fast to make bad stuff the only thing we keep ascribing "value" to. I can't remember the last thing we ascribed as close to being a gamer as GG. Negative attention, but it's more attention then we give the good of gaming is it?

Please, if you are out there and you act in discussions like this, try to remember the human on the other side of the keyboard, recognize the damage you do when you pre-judge them into any convenient bucket. Whatever your ideologies, please come towards the center, put up your coat, sit down and talk it out. We've got a lot of work to do.

Very few agree how much sexual appeal can be in games and where it can be without censure. Very few agrees on how to best entice women into gaming. very few knows how to prevent the vicious 2% extremes of gamers from making people's lives a living hell. Very few know how you punish in a largely anonymous space.

We gotta figure this stuff out, and we can't even decide who's allowed to be at the table and what's allowed to be said.

Thank you for your time, please consider my words in peace.

#3 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

I do hope gamersgate hashtag gets minimized so we can realize that those crazy people won't magically vanish because some twitter posts went away.

Each time we do this song and dance they get to believe their method works. It's no wonder we're seeing this more and more. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if this becomes "the norm" for the extremists opposed to gaming feminism long after the last post tagged GG is gone.

Why wouldn't it? No consequences, large effect, and some nut gets to think he shapes the world.

The only thing that might start suppressing this is a solid FBI arrest and conviction.

But other then that why would they stop? We just keep unilaterally giving them what they want. Negative attention, evidence of our pain, affecting the gaming landscape.

#4 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

It's all a bad situation I don't know if there's a good answer. From the beginning of the internet we've known that anonymity encourages a certain set of people to behave badly, particularly towards women. This has been true since the days of joining AOL chat with a female name. That doesn't excuse the behavior, but it has been long running and there's never been a historical solution.

Similarly, the nature of trolling is another problem. Like in Patrick's recent article. Trolls thrive on negative attention. Always have, it's trolling as in searching for bites not green thug. "The joy of laughing in a reddening face" and all. They believe there's no consequence to their actions, and frankly, right now there isn't any consequence. With them delighting in hurting, and making people mad, I think the answer of "Everyone talk about how badly people are being hurt and how mad everyone is at them" is a recipe for attracting more trolls.

But what's the better move? When dealing with a bully who cannot be punished or even identified, what can anyone do but try to ignore them? We don't want to give the insane 2% more encouragement to harass stronger/more/further, but letting them 'get away with it' feels awful as well. Especially since everyone's made so much noise now that there's a smaller chance of convincing people their actions aren't mattering when so many people are writing articles about them specifically.

I think it's a serious mistake to be so loud in a way that makes the bullies feel powerful for the effects their actions have, I think it's going to only attract more trolls, maybe even ones who aren't specifically gamers! Yet still I have more and more trouble saying "don't react" either lately, considering the severity of the abuse lately.

#5 Posted by Shingro (228 posts) -

I'm not sure why a performer's art should be inherently more valued then a 3d modeler's art in terms of making a good show of things.

Both were created by human wills, put through choreography, errors were removed from the performance, etc.

Hell, the 3d performance art you know the performer won't come down sick, or mess up their performance.

#6 Posted by Shingro (228 posts) -

Very poignant. This piece helps with my own (possibly inexplicable due to... you know, never having met him) mourning of Ryan.

Thanks for that =)

#7 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

If anyone remembers the very first bioshock had like 3-6 years of various on and off again working and reworking of ideas behind it, do people remember the 'slug in wheelchair' sketches?

Now imagine Ken wanted to have a similar long term working and reworking of ideas.

now imagine paying the salaries of 200 people for those years while producing very little final work.

Yeah, this does suck for the people affected, but I'm not sure I can put the moral responsibility on Ken to always produce another game with that team for the rest of his life.

Is it not his decision whether he wants to make another game or not?

Anyway, I suspect that's what's happening here. We'll only know with time though

#8 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

Is it weird that my first reaction to the 'slight of hand' argument in that Bobservo tweet is to become suspicious where I wasn't before?

The real problem with the Kat article (besides namedropping Rapeplay which was never going to be a good idea for anyone) is that she just doesn't build a very good case, she states most things without evidence, makes wild connections that leave the reader scratching their head, and then the things she does back up people are reporting they saw differently.

She's certainly entitled to her opinion, but I suspect that opinion isn't going to be very useful to others. Considering no other reviewer even considered similar things I think the article says more about Kat then it does about Lords of Shadow (that's not a pejorative, just an observation since things on the internet must be spelled out)

Frankly, chances are good much like the Tomb Raider scene, the game's going to come out, the scene will hit youtube, everyone will watch it and say "Oh, that's it?" and likely feel dismissive of other articles of this nature, and in some cases the gaming feminism movement as a whole.

Net result is Kat will have delt a blow to the credibility of people calling out things in games that made them uncomfortable. and ironically (knowing Patrick's perspective) here Patrick is magnifying the effect willingly. The world is a very strange place.

#9 Posted by Shingro (228 posts) -

@joshwent said:

My one hope for 2014 is that we all find ways to be less divisive, but it clearly hasn't taken root yet. We need to get past this erroneous "indies are always the heroes vs those huge stifling corporate devs" mentality.

There's plenty of personal risk for independent developers, but the risk is personal--their livelihood.

I'm not doubting this is true, but you have to accept that it remains true no matter how big the dev is. One failed indie game could mean 4 people loosing their livelihood. One failed AAA game means potentially 100s of people's livelihood lost.

What you see as huge companies limiting creativity can also easily be seen as a company trying to create excellent art while maintaining a stable environment and job security for everyone involved.

And please, as was mentioned above, BI was only "seemingly" constrained by being an FPS by the players and journalists who didn't want it to be an FPS in the first place. Ken Levine has repeatedly said, even in his post BI interview on this very site that he wanted to make an FPS. Things like their shitty cover starring generic dude, he freely admits to being an intentional move to sell more copies so that they can reach a broader audience. But claiming that the fundamental underlying mechanic of the game is only a part of it because he was constrained creatively is just an utterly false assumption.

This was all sexy, I love it.

Top marks I'll definitely add my praise to this level headed thought. Remember that the higher you climb the bigger the risks. Not everyone wants to cast everything on a throw of the dice for some 'higher moral/artistic principle'

#10 Edited by Shingro (228 posts) -

Bioshock is an excellent example of a shooter, it's the full package, a story that's not disposable whether you agree it was a good idea or not, fantastic characters, interesting concepts executed on well (music, storyline, cycles, skylines, tears.) even good combat (skylines should frankly be a design nightmare as far as AI and design are concerned, but they aren't the hot mess they should be first run.)

Compared against almost any other shooter created in the last year, or even last few years it'd stand tall among the best or at very least most ambitious, which usually awards a grudging respect. If Bioshock Infinite was a new IP by an unknown developer I feel a lot of people's complaints would become muted.

It feels to me like hating it became a weird aversion fad. Most of the arguments are exactly the same and lack personal texture. Like people are reading similar critiques and just adopting it wholesale for social status reasons. Sorta like how very few people REALLY care about Justin beiber one way or another, but intentionally amplify their dislike.

That's probably not true in every case, just a thought. I'm probably talking crazy.