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Female Representation in Desktop Dungeons

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Noldor, Mar 8, 2014.

  1. Noldor

    Noldor Knight, Order of the Bug Hunters
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

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    Great article and touches on a "touchy" subject.

    QFC Design - Female Representation in Desktop Dungeons
    http://www.qcfdesign.com/?p=845

    In my own humble opinion:
    Most games objectify women and female toons/characters. But recent games are allowing players to change their toons'/characters' appearances to look more realistic. And to make armor/clothing choices make more sense. Unfortunately, these things happen in cycles... First more choices until "men in management" (who still haven't grown up) blame the lack of "beautiful chicks" for tumbling game sales and reverses all the gains that females in games have earned....back to the bouncy boobies and "bikini which is all the armor you get" models.

    A humorous video of the bad trends in gaming...
    College Humor - Female Armor Sucks


    TQQdles™
     
    #1 Noldor, Mar 8, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2014
    AirmidCecht and Taylor like this.
  2. Metro

    Metro WoW Staff Writer | WoW Moderator

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    Wow that video was hilarious!
    And you really described it well here:

    This is really insightful, and something I had not considered. But when you put it that way, it is quite recognizable.
    I, for one, am not for or against this "issue," as I am easily able to draw the line between fantasy and exploitation, but do not doubt that some games really push the topic so far.
    Its one thing when you make female models and gear "attractive, but not practical" and another when the female proportions are clearly aimed at 12 year olds.
    Good to see other games are embracing female protagonists though. That certainly is very healthy for the landscape of video games.
     
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  3. Caelys

    Caelys Visitor

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    As a woman, I am no longer offended by the depiction of females in games, not because I agree with the game companies or (some of) the male fans, but because it seems useless to use up my precious energy on something that will either never change, or only change when the proportion of female gamers grow. However, I have two lovely teenage daughters who tell me they are very offended by the way games depict women. Of course, they are more idealistic at their ages than I am now.

    My daughters are more inclined to play games that appeal to them, games that allow creativity like Minecraft or games that tell stories like the Final Fantasy games. They did enjoy Star Wars Galaxies for a short time but have no interest in most of the modern MMO's out there. They are too much like their mother, roleplayers, builders, crafters and socializers. :)

    Woman make up more than 50% of the population and the game companies still fail to recognize what we enjoy in games. A few succeed such as Ultima Online, SWG and possibly some new games like The Repopulation. They give us clothes to buy (yeah even us tomboys like clothes), herbs and plants to gather and grow, puzzles to solve, and most of all, places to meet and socialize. Does that mean we don't like adventure, action and risk? Not at all. I love a game where I am challenged and where I go or what I do can greatly impact my character. I lean a bit more toward the mental challenges than the physical ones but a good rush of adrenaline when running away from some huge create can be enjoyable! And trust me, I do run away. No need to prove my manliness! :) These same companies lament the fact that women do not play action games, only casual games. So they give us Candy Crush but fail to miss out on those of us who are hard core players, who want to dive into a complex, deep and immersive experience.

    The best thing the games can give us is more choices. Let us dress our characters in realistic armor that covers more than the "essentials". Give us chest sliders so we can actually make characters that look like they can run away without falling on their faces. Leave the skimpy stuff in...because, well, you never know when you might need the super-duper leather bikini. Allow the slider to go all the way to the right for those guys who like to play females so they can get more "stuff" given to them by other players. Yes, we know who you are.

    Just remember we are playing the game to play the game, not to look like some fantasy of ourselves. :)
     
  4. Ozmono

    Ozmono Visitor

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    To be fair most men are depicted unrealistically too. Maybe not to the same extent but more often than not they have extremely buff bodies. In a game where you are perfect hero or heroine I can see a reason for it. If, as in most games, you are supposed to be an embodiment of perfection and heroism than looking the part is appropriate. Being beautiful may not have any real life co-relation to extreme combat prowess or other heighted abilities but there are a couple of reasons why I think it is appropriate.

    The first reason it is appropriate is that there is a long standing association with heroism and beauty. This affiliation predates film and other modern culture. It goes back thousands of years. The best example this non-practicing Christian can think of are Angels. They were supposed to be very beautiful and they possessed abilities that no men or women did. Now it's important that expectations are taken into consideration, especially culturally ingrained ones and for this reason I can see heroism and beauty being appropriately tied together.

    The second reason I think it is appropriate is that there is a legitimate connection between health and beauty and health and increased physical capabilities. Now this applies much more to the unrealistic depiction of men than women but still applies to women to a much smaller extent. As a once thin younger man that is now a slightly older and much fatter man I can tell you truly that my ability to slay monsters has decreased :) I cannot run as far, I lose my breathe easier and I'm slower. Furthermore being overweight isn't considered beautiful anymore. So it's appropriate that hero's and heroines aren't portrayed as people as fat as I am.

    So in most games, not all but most, I can see why men and women are depicted unrealistically. Firstly there is a long standing tradition of associating heroism with beauty. Secondly health and beauty are related to a certain degree as is health and physical prowess. Finally I'll also add that most people in life would choose to be beautiful if given the option and as such it makes sense that they are depicted as much in fantasy.

    Now in a game where you aren't the hero or heroine than most of what I have said is no longer relevant and in a MMORPG I don't see why everyone needs to be the hero or heroine. Also I'm all for choice in any game.
     
    #4 Ozmono, Mar 13, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2014
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  5. Caelys

    Caelys Visitor

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    I don't have a problem with beautiful avatars. :) The issue is with unrealistic body proportions (and you are right, the men are uber buff which really isn't always beautiful) and unrealistic clothing to reveal as much of the body as possible. A woman warrior would never wear a bikini and go off to fight a monster, would she?
     
  6. Ozmono

    Ozmono Visitor

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    Oh I agree that fighting in a bikini is ridiculous :)
    I also should have been more careful with the use of the word beauty too I suppose. I think as far as unrealistic proportions goes, it's often an exaggeration of what passes for beauty generally. With men and women. That said most things in games tend to be exaggerated for impact. Voice acting, speed, colours and in this case body proportions to name a few.
     
  7. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    At the very least, be fair and let male warriors also wear bikinis into battle. Saints Row style.
     
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  8. Noldor

    Noldor Knight, Order of the Bug Hunters
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    Like the official Mage's Robe (it is NOT a dress...if a man wears it) in SotA! I just waiting for kilts to enter games...I can recreate my early years being a Renaissance Faire enactor. -)

    TQQdles™
     
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  9. Petra Fyde

    Petra Fyde Peerless Chatterbox
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    You missed it, kilts have been in this game since its inception :D
     
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  10. Caelys

    Caelys Visitor

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    At least kilts cover the vital areas of the body! A little slash across the knee leaves a sexy scar. A slash across the exposed bikini area...yikes...intestines on the battlefield. Yuck!