Sunday, July 1, 2012

Regarding Sexism in Video Games...

Sexism in video-games...

As most of you are probably aware, there is this woman who goes by the name "Feminist Frequency" on Youtube. On her channel, she discusses feminism under a variety of different mediums in todays world for example, Comic Books, Video Games, Tv Shows films and more and describes how these things are sexist. However Anita Sarkeesian (The main operator of Feminist Frequency) came under a lot of fire recently when she demanded money to make a series to explain under a variety of heading how todays video game industry is "Sexist". From vandalising her Wikipedia page to finding out a lot of her personal details, Ms. Sarkeesian was digitally assaulted by people who were angered by this (Mainly due to it's rapid popularity growth on 4chan). While I agree that there is a lot of sexism in the community of gaming, the idea that the industry itself is sexist is...RIDICULOUS! Before continuing to read this post, please watch the video below so you can understand more of what I'm going to be discussing.

Anita Sarkeesian hoped to raise $6000 however ended up blitzing passed that to score over $150'000, mainly due to the tremendous help from some of my fellow gamers who with their Shakespearean vocabulary posted comments like "im gun rap u up" and so on. However lets get back to the video's point. Ms. Sarkeesian wants to discuss the whole topic of sexism under the following headings

  • Damsel in Distress 
  • The Fighting F#@k Toy
  • The Sexy Sidekick 
  • The Sexy Villainess
  • Background Decoration 

  • Any active video-game player will know how bullshit this argument is. I'm going to post here, my own argument against these theories however this may be sexist according to Anita Sarkeesian as after watching more of her videos, pretty much everything to do with women is sexist.
    To start off with, there's the Damsel in Distress, a foundation for hundreds of thousands of stories in the last hundred years or so, whether it's in the time of cowboys and Indians or during the era of knights and dragons. Calling a woman being trapped and a lover/family member/ friend/ random stranger to go and rescue them is both ridiculous and horribly one sided. There have been a variety of cases where males have been imprisoned and wives/friends/sisters etc. had to rescue them. Hell not 10 minutes ago, I just did a main quest in Skyrim where that was the whole objective, to free one of the Grey Manes from a Thalmor prison. In Fallout New Vegas, If you're aiming to be a paradigm of goodness, you can choose to rescue Benny before he's crucified. Almost every fecking war game/ film has had a male character imprisoned and his fellow soldiers would have to rescue them.
    The fighting *^&$# toy is another idiotic and one sided comment, which is in regards to buxom characters such as Lara Croft, Tifa Lockheart, Chun-Li, Meryl Silverburgh and so on and so forth. Apparently it's sexist to have women who are good looking fighting. Of course we've never EVER seen a good looking man fighting in a game. Ryu from Street Fighter definitely isn't meant to be good looking, either is John Marston, Cloud from Final Fantasy, Nathan Drake, Marcus Fenix, Cole McGrath, Alex Mason... The list goes on and on with regards to both sides have good looking lead characters. If it's sexism to have good looking females, what is it for having good looking males too?
    The sexy sidekick is the third opinion which discusses how women in video games are also used simply to be good looking sidekicks. As with every other point this video makes, there is a similar character who is male. Take for example, Saints Row 3, a game I recently reviewed here on the Blarg, there is pretty much an equal amount of sidekicks of both genders, some of them good looking on both sides, others not so good looking. In Skyrim you can have a big muscelly male nord running around with a warhammer, in Metal Gear Solid 4 there's Raiden and depending on your perspective there's Dante & Nero in Devil May Cry 4.
    The Sexy Villaness is yet another idea. Of course, it's oh so sexist to have a woman who's good looking playing a villain, oh the humanity! Of course we've never EVER had a good looking male villain. Let's just ignore people like Liquid Snake, Sephiroth, Akuma, Anakin Skywalker (Before he gets burnt to shit) Colnel Volgin. Of course it would be sexism to have only sexy women playing villanesses etc. However like everything else to do with Sarkeesians arguments, there are also males.
    Do I really need to expand further with this argument and prove how her saying having women as background decoration is also a load of bullshit and not sexism. Here are just some examples though yet again of men simply existing in the background and not really doing anything but chiming in every now and again. Otacon from Metal Gear Solid, Snow Villiers in Final Fantasy XIII-2, Zeke from Infamous.

    So in conclusion, I think that this argument that there is sexism from video game players is spot on, however the idea that there is sexism in the industry is just ridiculous and in know way would you ever need $6000 let alone $150000+. I just expressed my opinion and if I pay (Just an example not an actual figure) 30 euro per month for my broadband, and wrote this in about half an hour- 45 mins, I'd only have to pay 20-40 cent. Even if I wanted to make a video, I wouldn't need to spend $6000 on a camera and editing software. So with that I'd like to end by saying how Anita Sarkeesian is in an idiotic fool who needs to look at both sides of arguments before she demonises one.


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