Most video games star white males.

Lurklen

New member
Feb 2, 2010
83
0
0
I'd like to see more diversity in protagonists, games or otherwise. I don't think it's an emergency but I don't see why it's all that difficult to do. As for the argument that most gamers are white males,so? Sonic was a blue hedgehog and he sold like crazy, pacman was a yellow circle with a mouth, no one had trouble identifying with him. Hell I bet more guys played Mrs. Pacman than women did. More importantly the games those characters were in were fun to play, that is what sells games.

Most first person shooter characters are just hands, like they're not even a whole person just hands that hold a weapon, so why can't those hands be brown? There are people who want it and it's unlikely to really alienate people who don't even think about it,(the majority) so why not do it? The worst that happens is we have a generic protagonist who's only difference from the herd is their skin colour, at best we get something new and interesting.

I mean I'm guilty of it too, I'm writing a story and the protagonist is a young white male I'm not sure why. It's just what popped in my head when I thought of the character, but honestly it doesn't really change anything about his character so maybe he'll be south american just for the hell of it.
 

Al-Bundy-da-G

New member
Apr 11, 2011
929
0
0
Assassin's Creed? But Altiar is arabic... Someone call Morgan Freeman, if his sound logic and voice of audible chocolate aren't enough to stop this troll nothing is.
 

Bocaj2000

New member
Sep 10, 2008
1,082
0
0
Landshark1 said:
Bocaj2000 said:
Landshark1 said:
Last time I heard anyone say this, It was on a youtube comment where someone posted "Watchmen is Racist because it doesn't have any black main characters". If the most important thing in a video game to you is the skin color of the main character, you are either playing the wrong type of games, or are in fact a racist yourself.
Or maybe the person is black.

Hell, I bought GTA: The Lost and Damned just because the main character is Jewish. I honestly cannot name ONE other game that has this.
We'll just have to agree to disagree. I personally believe that when buying a game the most important thing should be how much fun it is, not the ethnicity/religion of the main character. Also, the ethnicity of the buyer in comparison to a game protagonist shouldn't be a factor in deciding to get the game, and a black person not liking a game protagonist because they are white is just as racist as a white person not liking a game protagonist because they are black.

Also, I do feel like some games can add extra depth to a character by adding a differing religion, sexual preference, or race (Prey and Persona 4 come to mind), but I also feel that developers often just add a race to a character as an afterthought to make the game more politically correct.
I never said that race is a deciding factor, but it can be important if the buyer is a minority. I also buy games based on my biased opinion on "good." We agree on this. However, your "racist" argument is very nieve. THE ISSUE IS NOT a conspiracy of how the entire game industry is racist for having a predominately straight, white, male cast of protagonists. The issue is simply the fact that there are very few games with diversity (and no, making a white character darker doesn't count). The issue is that the industry is limiting itself to "blank-slate" characters instead of diving into some ethnic related issues. It's about taking risks. Also, as black gamers, it would kind of suck to grow up not being able to project themselves onto this "blank-slate."

How come every time race is brought up, WASPS dismiss it as "political correctness" instead of having an actual conversation? Political correctness and diversity are NOT interchangeable words.
 

scarfacetehstag

New member
Feb 12, 2011
65
0
0
I have to know, is not finding black women attractive as whole a racist? Is that a thing? Not a genetic per-disposition?
 

-Dragmire-

King over my mind
Mar 29, 2011
2,821
0
0
It seems to me that it's so common now that anytime someone deviates from that people look at it as 'trying to make some statement' and read too much into it. If the developer is not trying to make a statement on race/sexuality it's just easier to default to what people have accepted as the norm.

Naturally, games have chosen to do something different with the main character (ex. Portal) but for developers and/or publishers who don't want to risk doing something different, it's easier to go "just go with the usual white guy".
 

FoolKiller

New member
Feb 8, 2008
2,409
0
0
Dear OP.

I appreciate what you've tried to do. I believe that while it may be true that the white male is the dominant protagonist of choice for a developer, the trend has gone away from that and allowed more and more choice in the matter in a game.

I have just done quick viewing of all the games I've cleared on 360 (since I feel this generation matters more than the past and I have played too many to count all). Here are the results of the 51 games checked:

PROTAGONISTS
25 Multi (where you can play as different ones either by choice of character or by creation)
19 white (although 9 of those must be white due to the nature of the source material and not by developer choice: this includes 5 Harry Potters)
1 middle eastern
1 Hawaiian (I hope I spelled that right)
1 asian
1 native american
1 robot
1 panda

(Note: Uncharted falls under the 'must-be white' category as well since its Francis Drake's descendant... more terrifying is Nathan Drake's personality and actions rather than his skin colour)

Granted, when you have a fixed race protagonist (even eliminating the source material fixtures) you have an 10:6 ratio of white to non-white. This still clearly favours white but it isn't as bad as it would seem initially.

Even more inspiring is that nearly half of the 51 games polled, there are multiple options or a character creation option that allows a player to create whatever they feel the most comfortable with.

Selection of a few choice games is something to note but nothing to worry about overall unless there is a trend going in the wrong direction.

So in conclusion of this aspect of the discussion, I prefer to think glass half full and look at the half that lets me choose what I want to play as.

As for the concept of white privileges, you are correct. There is still an advantage to being a blonde, blue-eyed, white, heterosexual male. But I don't think that the video game industry is demonstrating this to any great extent. I also believe that the trend is moving in the right direction.

Finally, I would like to point out the logical fallacy regarding the comments about attraction and such. Attraction is about discrimination. You are discriminating what you find attractive versus what you don't. If I'm not attracted to black women it doesn't make me racist any more than not being attracted to men makes me hate homosexuals.

Thank you for your time and the interesting discussion.
 

Trippy Turtle

Elite Member
May 10, 2010
2,118
0
41
Does it matter? Most video game characters are American. I'm not offended by it.
Complaining about stuff like this just causes problems where there aren't any.
 

Zyxzy

New member
Apr 16, 2009
343
0
0
I find the "male" part to currently be the most problematic. It is unnervingly difficult to find a non-sexualized female main character who isn't Samus Aran.

Though, video gaming is still probably better than Hollywood in the whole "white male main character" regard.
 

Aeonknight

New member
Apr 8, 2011
751
0
0
Why are most protagonists white males? Because as soon as you put in a character of african descent, it's racist.

If you put an african lead, someone will think he was shoehorned in to avoid them pulling the race card. Which is in itself... pulling the race card. And that's before they even get to their arguements on how the african character is just a racial stereotype.

If you put in a white lead, someone will think of it as a disturbing lack of other ethnicities and start suspecting the developers are members of the KKK.


AKA someone will call bullshit whether you design your game inside or outside of the box of "generic white guy". Developers can't fucking win it seems.
 

Fronken

New member
May 10, 2008
1,120
0
0
LilithSlave said:
Racism is more than "actively discriminating against people". It is social systems like white privilege.

In fact, not seeing racism as anything outside of the behavior of an individual tends to the the sign of white privilege.

Racism isn't dead, not in the slightest. In fact, in today's society, most people don't realize they're being racist, that they're supporting racism, and that a standard is racist.
Wow, this has to be the stupidest reasoning i've ever read on a forum.

Modelling your buisness to attract the biggest audience possible is what you are supposed to do as a buisness, because guess what, if you dont, your buisness dies.

Majority > Minority, that is the way it's always been, and that is the way it should be.

And i'm not in the slightest racist by saying that, because that's the way democracy works, that's the way the modern world works.

And just to clear something out: Racism IS actively discriminating against people.

Just because most video game characters are white doesnt mean that everyone buying games or even the people creating the games are racist, not even close.
 

Insanity72

New member
Feb 14, 2011
318
0
0
LilithSlave said:
If race doesn't matter, then why are most video game protagonists white males?
DasDestroyer said:
The average gamer is a white male, and most white male gamers prefer to play white males. Hence the most profitable strategy is to make your game start a white male.
^ this, although I don't need to add anything i just thought i would make sure you saw it.
 

Necroid_Neko

New member
Nov 24, 2011
147
0
0
I actually agree with the OP, I'd like to see a bigger diversity of playable race in video games, I'd like to say it doesn't matter because in games you mostly only see your character from behind anyway but I do actually care about it and will actively choose only games where there is character creation/character selection available (though in my case it's because I'm female and don't want to play as a male character...)
Personally I think more racial diversity in games, coming from a small country town I haven't really met many people from outside my own ethnicity, and I remember really liking Jade Empire for introducing me to an all-Chinese (characters) game because it gave me a glimpse at another culture, though it would have been nice if they'd been voiced by Chinese people too...
 

Popeman

New member
Nov 6, 2011
95
0
0
I read somewhere that Snake was half Japanese in cannon so you could likely take Metal Gear off that list. Although he dose look rather white so whatever. But I do get asked if I am Japanese a lot and I am as white as a show man. But to what you said about it being raciest I guess if you want to see it that way.