|
Your continuous donations keep RPGWatch running!
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Gamasutra - Sexism and Sexuality In Games

Default Gamasutra - Sexism and Sexuality In Games

June 21st, 2013, 12:54
Gamasutra has posted a video from the GDC Vault of Bioware's David Gaider from GDC 2013. The topic "Sexism and Sexuality In Games."

"Are we requiring the female protagonist to work harder and sell more in order to prove herself?" asks Dragon Age lead writer David Gaider, in this GDC 2013 video about sexism and sexuality in games, free courtesy of GDC Vault.

In examining his own career, Gaider takes a brief look at how romantic characters evolved from Baldur's Gate II to the Dragon Age series. While he recognizes not all games can or should be all things to all people, he believes the industry could be less dis-inviting of players who would otherwise be paying customers.

He urges those who choose to design minority characters to consider their roles and purpose in the game. Additionally, he suggests those of privilege to seek out possible groups affected by design choices and talk to them, or if security requires it not leave the office, to hire diversely. Their unique viewpoints, he said, should be considered "assets," not "affirmative action."

Session Name: Sex in Video Games

Speaker(s): David Gaider

Company Name(s): BioWare EA

Track / Format: Design

Description: Games have reached the point where realistic portrayals of sex and adult relationships are possible, but what does this mean to us as developers? How much responsibility do we have in addressing issues of sexism and sexuality, and are we inadvertently making statements about what is acceptable, even when we don't mean to say anything at all? Our industry is struggling with a conflict between the desire to be taken seriously as an art form, and the desire to avoid addressing social issues because what we make are "just games." These things have implications on our sales, and while they can be addressed, it can only happen if we are willing to acknowledge that greater discussion of the topic within the industry is merited.
More information.

"Frankly Sir /Madam I don't give a damn about your opinion."- Couchpotato
Couchpotato is offline

Couchpotato

Couchpotato's Avatar
LazyGamer
RPGWatch Team

#1

Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Potato Land
Posts: 9,212

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 12:54
Isn't the one who should talk about this topic anyone from FO2 team and not Bioware?
There is no Bioware game where your "toon" can have sex with just about anything, can get married, divorced, can make a porn movie and etc. In Bioware's games all you get a few smalltalk options and "bedding", that's it.

Toka Koka
joxer is offline

joxer

joxer's Avatar
The Smoker
RPGWatch Donor

#2

Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 6,066

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 12:56
Games don't have to be about everything. Write a good plot and if that happens to have a compelling story arc that involves some social issue or other, by all means include it. But, don't imagine that gamers need to be preached at by force fitting the current politically correct zeitgeist into games.
Roq is offline

Roq

Seeker
RPGWatch Donor

#3

Join Date: May 2012
Location: Somerset/London UK
Posts: 977

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 16:45
Originally Posted by Roq View Post
Games don't have to be about everything. Write a good plot and if that happens to have a compelling story arc that involves some social issue or other, by all means include it. But, don't imagine that gamers need to be preached at by force fitting the current politically correct zeitgeist into games.
This. Doing what this BioWare stooge suggests is a sure recipe for bad writing. Simply write what is appropriate for your setting and characters.

What exactly makes BioWare in expert in this field? Gay elf sex triggered, as the other poster mentioned, by small talk? Employees of the company continually spout off on this topic, sounding like high schoolers given an improptu essay assignment. Open letter to BioWare: Get over yourselves.
Capt. Huggy Face is offline

Capt. Huggy Face

Capt. Huggy Face's Avatar
Magicky Utok

#4

Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,003

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 18:38
So very tired.

"In Grimwhoah, you can ride on turtles."
Sacred_Path is offline

Sacred_Path

Sacred_Path's Avatar
Basement Horror

#5

Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Germany
Posts: 890

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 18:39
I didn't watch the 48 minute video but going by the title here I just have to say, again, that YES YES YES ABSOLUTLEY YESSSSSS the issues of Sex and Sexuality are important to us humans and worthy of discussion and endless debate.

But all the arguing and endless debating and the multitudes of ways people can get hung up on some particular discussion on the topics are the very reasons why I game. To just take a break from all this kind of stuff.

These guys are spending too much time on this stuff. Go make fun games. People will play them. Leave all the complicatedness of sex and sexuality for Oprah and Dr. Phil.

If I'm right but there is no wife around to acknowledge it, am I still right?
TheMadGamer is offline

TheMadGamer

TheMadGamer's Avatar
SasqWatch

#6

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Oregon
Posts: 1,965

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 18:40
Who needs Sex to sell things if a story is good ?

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
Alrik Fassbauer is offline

Alrik Fassbauer

Alrik Fassbauer's Avatar
TL;DR

#7

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Old Europe
Posts: 15,938

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 19:18
Most men and women are attracted to beauty. This can be a landscape, an animal, a flower, a car, a movie, a picture, postage stamp … and naturally a naked human body.

The most normal thing in the world. I have no problem with nudity and/or showing sexuality in games as long it is not degrading.

One important condition:
If the game is for kids make it child-oriented / suitable for children.

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
Last edited by HiddenX; June 21st, 2013 at 19:50.
HiddenX is online now

HiddenX

HiddenX's Avatar
The Elder Spy
RPGWatch Donor

#8

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: NRW/Germany
Posts: 3,795

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 19:53
Wow, did you guys watch the video? His point wasn't to include the minority stuff, but rather to ask your self, "why am I doing this?" (to the devs). or "If I include this, how am I treating it and why?".
Basically, get second hand opinion of people that don't think like you. (his example of the plot point that was meant to be creepy shows this)
And not to get surprised when people criticize your decisions. To have "I mean to do this", rather "This wasn't mean to be interpreted like that."
lilmagi is offline

lilmagi

Watcher

#9

Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 68

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 19:55
A discussion about sex and sexuality in games… how novel.

Funny how we seem to get this at least once a month.
JDR13 is offline

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch

#10

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 17,719

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 20:05
Let me point out that there are very sinister political reasons in putting [sexism] and [sexuality] in the same sentence. The first is discrimination based on sex, like blocking someone from a job for example. Sexism is dysfunctional in a modern society. Sexuality is something completely different.

The groups who like to use both in the same sentence usually try to ride on work against the former to attack the latter.

Mankind must put an end to war or war will put an end to mankind. - John F Kennedy
An eye for an eye, and soon the whole world is blind. - Mahatma Gandhi
The world is my country. To do good is my religion. My mind is my own church. This simple creed is all we need to enjoy peace on earth. - Thomas Paine
JemyM is offline

JemyM

JemyM's Avatar
Okay, now roll sanity.

#11

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 6,027
Send a message via ICQ to JemyM Send a message via MSN to JemyM

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 20:21
Games have reached the point where realistic portrayals of sex and adult relationships are possible, but what does this mean to us as developers? How much responsibility do we have in addressing issues of sexism and sexuality, and are we inadvertently making statements about what is acceptable, even when we don't mean to say anything at all? Our industry is struggling with a conflict between the desire to be taken seriously as an art form, and the desire to avoid addressing social issues because what we make are "just games." These things have implications on our sales, and while they can be addressed, it can only happen if we are willing to acknowledge that greater discussion of the topic within the industry is merited.
Aww…. They grow up so fast! Does hair start growing down there? Are you sometimes wet when you wake up? Or maybe you're already in the stage of spending a lot of time locked in the bathroom? Don't worry it's all natural, maybe it's time we had 'the talk'…

Why on earth is a 40 year old man so obsessed by these issues instead of just simply handling them in a natural adult way?

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
Last edited by holeraw; June 21st, 2013 at 22:02.
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#12

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 21:54
Originally Posted by lilmagi View Post
Wow, did you guys watch the video? His point wasn't to include the minority stuff, but rather to ask your self, "why am I doing this?" (to the devs). or "If I include this, how am I treating it and why?".
Basically, get second hand opinion of people that don't think like you. (his example of the plot point that was meant to be creepy shows this)
And not to get surprised when people criticize your decisions. To have "I mean to do this", rather "This wasn't mean to be interpreted like that."
Exactly people like to jump to conclusions without reading or watching. It's a common practice and I'm sure we all have done it a few times.

"Frankly Sir /Madam I don't give a damn about your opinion."- Couchpotato
Last edited by Couchpotato; June 21st, 2013 at 22:46.
Couchpotato is offline

Couchpotato

Couchpotato's Avatar
LazyGamer
RPGWatch Team

#13

Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Potato Land
Posts: 9,212

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 22:01
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
Exactly people like to jump to conclusions without reading or watching.
I'm guilty of that I even admitted it in my first post in this thread.

But given the title of the article and that the video is over 40 minutes long on a titled subject I'm not willing to spend that much time on, I did say in advance my comments were based on the title used here at the watch. Next time I'll just pass since I really should have watched the video before commenting.

If I'm right but there is no wife around to acknowledge it, am I still right?
TheMadGamer is offline

TheMadGamer

TheMadGamer's Avatar
SasqWatch

#14

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Oregon
Posts: 1,965

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 22:21
Originally Posted by TheMadGamer View Post
I'm guilty of that I even admitted it in my first post in this thread.

But given the title of the article and that the video is over 40 minutes long on a titled subject I'm not willing to spend that much time on, I did say in advance my comments were based on the title used here at the watch. Next time I'll just pass since I really should have watched the video before commenting.

I wasn't targeting you. It's just something I see on most internet sites. Yours is the best post in the topic.

"Frankly Sir /Madam I don't give a damn about your opinion."- Couchpotato
Couchpotato is offline

Couchpotato

Couchpotato's Avatar
LazyGamer
RPGWatch Team

#15

Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Potato Land
Posts: 9,212

Default 

June 21st, 2013, 22:22
If this guy has something of interest to say on the subject it would be in his work first and foremost, but he, and Bioware in general, approach sexuality the same way a romantic high school kid does. As such I don't see why we should expect that his speech would be of any value to anyone that is interested in an adult approach.

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#16

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

June 22nd, 2013, 10:01
They're called games, right? Not political-statement-facilitators.

Ok ok, so someone is gay or whatever and wants to take his own personal experience with that and make entire games around it.

To me, sexuality as a topic is trivial and your preference is incidental and boring. I don't give a shit about what you like to do with your body - just as long as you don't hurt anyone in the process.

But keep all that crap out of your game if you expect me to enjoy it. It's not interesting enough to warrant this level of attention.

When you create a character - make sure his or her sexuality and preferences are kept in the background - unless it's an essential part of his or her role in the story. Most people don't carry around signs that say what they want to fuck.

Learn from that.

If this is about acceptance and tolerance - then the best way to talk about our differences is not to.
DArtagnan is online now

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#17

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 14,234

Default 

June 22nd, 2013, 10:05
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
They're called games, right? Not political-statement-facilitators.

Ok ok, so someone is gay or whatever and wants to take his own personal experience with that and make entire games around it.

To me, sexuality as a topic is trivial and your preference is incidental and boring. I don't give a shit about what you like to do with your body - just as long as you don't hurt anyone in the process.

But keep all that crap out of your game if you expect me to enjoy it. It's not interesting enough to warrant this level of attention.

When you create a character - make sure his or her sexuality and preferences are kept in the background - unless it's an essential part of his or her role in the story. Most people don't carry around signs that say what they want to fuck.

Learn from that.

I agree with this. I prefer my games to have sexuality as irrelevant. I want to talk about stuff that people dont talk about much, the more weird it is the better. Talk about sex and sexism in games is boring.
Damian is offline

Damian

Sentinel

#18

Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 401

Default 

June 22nd, 2013, 11:41
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
Let me point out that there are very sinister political reasons in putting [sexism] and [sexuality] in the same sentence. The first is discrimination based on sex, like blocking someone from a job for example. Sexism is dysfunctional in a modern society. Sexuality is something completely different.

The groups who like to use both in the same sentence usually try to ride on work against the former to attack the latter.
So you mean that they use sexism as a kind of tool to go against sexuality ?
Or how do I have to understand this ? It's not fully clear vto me.

Anyway, it's an interesting thought.

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
Alrik Fassbauer is offline

Alrik Fassbauer

Alrik Fassbauer's Avatar
TL;DR

#19

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Old Europe
Posts: 15,938

Default 

June 22nd, 2013, 11:43
How about a game that is mainly about sex? It would probably be insurmountably difficult to make a serious, mature RPG focused on sex, but I would like to play one.
Mr Smiley is offline

Mr Smiley

Mr Smiley's Avatar
Watchdog

#20

Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 158
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Gamasutra - Sexism and Sexuality In Games
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 15:45.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright by RPGWatch