Skullgirls Artist Weighs In on Sexism Controversy

Kopikatsu

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Siege_TF said:
I was surprised to learn this is an actual game in the first place instead of some pipe dream and as such I'll at least be renting it regardless of whatever controversy because the only question I ever really ask myself is: "Did I like playing it?"
You can't rent it. It's only an indie downloadable game. (I know you can get it on PSN, but I'm not sure if it's on XBA as well)
 

Danceofmasks

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Jul 16, 2010
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The game is sexist.

There's also nothing wrong with it.

This is coming from someone who thinks Dead or Alive is quite high on the wrong scale.
 

Hexenwolf

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Sep 25, 2008
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Definitely more helpful than hurtful to it's sales figures. For example, I'd never even heard of this game before the "scandal."
 

Gmans uncle

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This... doesn't seem like something that needs to be a controversy.
Is it pandery? Yes. Is it immature? Eeyup. Is it sexist? No.
To call sexism on this is to call sexism on 99.9% of the entertainment industry. Sex sells. I always has. It always will. I'm going to agree with Jim Sterling on this one, the best way to end sexism in the modern entertainment industry is not less half naked chicks, it's more half naked dudes! That way everyone is objectified, and we're all equally pandered too.
(And I'm not just saying that because I'm a bisexual guy)
 

swimon

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bladescavenger said:
People make my head hurt...If you don't like it...STOP PLAYING/LOOKING/WATCHING IT...and let those who enjoy w/e it is be it any form of media, to enjoy it! I think people just like starting stuff, for the heck of it, and those people tend to be fanatics that are more hypocritical than anyone. People are free to develop, create, draw, program, w/e they want, its a free country...atm at least lol, and for those of you who don't like it...it is your freedom to leave those who do ALONE! lol. *off soap box* but seriously people who get offended so easily need a better hobby lol
By the same argument shouldn't you have refrained from writing that comment? I mean if you don't like people arguing about sexism in games then don't look at it. Of course you did read it and you did comment because you found it to be wrong and wanted to try to change things for the better, even if just in a really small way like commenting on a forum. Which is exactly what the people who argued that the game is sexist tried to do.

Also lets not pretend that there is some giant outcry about the game being super sexist. I read all the previous comments and I saw zero comments arguing something akin to "this game that I have never played is undoubtedly super sexist and the creators need to die". I did see a lot of comments along the lines of "this game that I have never played is undoubtedly not sexist and anyone arguing that it might be must die in a fire" tho. No, the story here is not that a legion of people shouting sexism accusations on some poor undeserved game but rather that there is still an incredibly large amount of people in even this gaming forum (which is usually above par in gaming forum intelligence) who simply cannot discuss sexism without getting incredibly angry over the fact that someone out there is discussing an issue that affects 100% of the population of the planet.

Note that I'm not saying that people arguing that this game isn't sexist are wrong. I'm simply saying that this is something that should be discussed calmly with a monocle in the eye rather than with fire and drooling rage.

So what did I think of it? Well it's hard to judge a game without having played it but I have to admit that my sexism alarm did not go off watching the trailer. That might just be me being desensitised to this sort of thing but it didn't seem so bad and there seemed to be more focus on the characters "character" rather than their sexuality. I can see the argument of sexism being made tho, it's in that grey area where it's hard to judge (again especially without having played it) but I don't really have a problem with this. The comments he made tho (and it was totally an interview he didn't just have "a talk" with some members of the gaming press and not expect them to publish it) really do seem, well... Stupid. "Our game isn't sexist because a woman designed it and women can't be sexist" is a comment too stupid to be sexist, it might be the dumbest thing I've heard in quite a while.
 

HobbesMkii

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Jun 7, 2008
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The_root_of_all_evil said:
HobbesMkii said:
Well...this is how you make it much, much worse.
Or better for product knowledge...

Major news outlets containing detailed pictures of "TERRIBLY SEXIST SHENANIGANS!"

Who else do we know like that?

Ha, this is exactly the game I was thinking of for making large-breasted women the centerpiece of its publicity.
 

Vault101

I'm in your mind fuzz
Sep 26, 2010
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The_root_of_all_evil said:
I think Skullgirls has got a lot more column inches from this than it would have got otherwise.

Make of that what you will.

Now, how do I generate some more controversy for my new book "Was Hitler Gay?"
was hitler gay? thats nothing

I read somwhere some think he actually had a fecies fetish (or scat) howver they mentioned frued as evidence so Im not so sure
 

Valanthe

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Sep 24, 2009
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CK76 said:
Duke Nukem makes me more uncomfortable than Cloud Strife.
You just reminded me of a comment I made back when Duke's CTF mode was announced (and condemned by... I think maybe Faux News, I can't remember.)

point is, if you're itching for a sexist game to call down; Duke Nukem is a sexist game, and as I said during that 'scandal' I begrudgingly took the side of whoever was calling it down because let's face it, we all knew even before release that the devs weren't good enough to pull it off as satire.

But this is just downright laughable, on both sides, you have self important White Knights crusading driving their misguided crusades down this devs throat, then you have the devs themselves, who backpedal so quickly you'd think they were working for Ubisoft. Oh well, at least one side is getting loads of free advertising, I'd likely never have heard of this game if not for this scandal, I wonder if there's a way I can write an open letter to the nay-sayers expressing such gratitude?

P.S. here's a quick link for anyone who's out of the loop on the Ubisoft joke: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/114378-I-Am-Alive-Dev-Claims-Mistranslation-Says-PC-Might-Still-Happen
 

Technicka

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Russell Utterson said:
So, where are all the people looking at Ultimecia from FFVII and saying that game is sexist? Sexism is discrimination, not giving them miniskirts and J-cups. Jeez.
Ultimecia was in VIII. And people did complain. Just because you didn't see an article on it doesn't mean people aren't discussing it.

Sexism isn't just blatant discrimination. It's the continued reinforcement of ideals that, in effect, undermine women as individuals worthy of respect as human beings.
 

Simeon Ivanov

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Jun 2, 2011
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Oh no! Tits! RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!


... seriously, what kind of an idiot do you have to be to accuse an all-female fighting game to be sexist? And why would you care?
 

MetalMagpie

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yunabomb said:
MetalMagpie said:
One thing I still don't understand: Why is designing characters to visually appeal to men sexist?

Sexism is something like this: Women shouldn't be paid as much as men to do the same job, because they aren't as valuable.
There's more to sexism than that, particularly when you look at media. Women are frequently/usually portrayed as objects to be seen by presumably heterosexual males. This is often referred to as the "male gaze" (I personally don't use the term much since it doesn't mean much to most people). This pervades videogames, where women often are designed to be eye candy, while men get far more varied representation (when's the last time you saw a male videogame character posing suggestively?).

The fan service in Skullgirls wouldn't be sexist if the game existed in a vacuum, but it doesn't. Sexism in general doesn't exist in a vacuum.

Also, there's the Gender Games video from The Big Picture on this site that concisely explains the presentation issues videogames have.
Again, what is inherently anti-women's-rights about designing something to visually appeal to a target market? And why is it assumed that provocative images are created with the intention of asserting that women have nothing of value save their appearance?

If a newspaper publishes a photo of a woman in a suit on her mobile phone, does that mean that the newspaper thinks women are completely defined by their careers? So why does publishing a picture of a woman in a sexy outfit imply that the publisher views women as just sex objects?

You say that Skullgirls doesn't exist in a vacuum. And it doesn't. There are ten of thousands of products/brands/publications/etc. that are designed very strongly to appeal to just one gender. To use a trivial example, the Twilight novels and films are written to appeal to women, playing on fantasies about being fought over by desirable studs.

A more obvious example is the world of advertising. Would you expect an advert for women's clothing to be targeted equally at men and women? So why do you expect fighting games (where there is a majority male market) to be aimed equally at both men and women?

Technicka said:
Sexism isn't just blatant discrimination. It's the continued reinforcement of ideals that, in effect, undermine women as individuals worthy of respect as human beings.
What idea is being reinforced that undermines women? That they have bodies? That men find women attractive? What gives you the impression that there is only room for one image of what a woman is? Why can't women be worthy of respect and sexually desirable?

I think most mature adults are capable of understanding that a woman can be more than one thing!
 

Mike Kayatta

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Aug 2, 2011
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Mygaffer said:
You know sometimes I read something like this and I can't help but feel this was all manufactured for publicity. I even start to think the reporting outlet is in on it...
You caught me. I'm totally in on it. In the future, every time Ms. Fortune flashes her panties during a combo I get ten cents, while earning twenty-five each time I convince someone on the Escapist to post on the forums that boobs are sexist. Muahaha. Clever of you to see through how this website works; we thought we'd fooled the lot of you.
 

ms_sunlight

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Jun 6, 2011
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My reaction:

Skullgirls art: oy oy oy, more boobies, aren't we past this already?

Weak, risible justification of Skullgirls art: oy oy oy, will these people never learn?

Even weaker, more risible explanation of risible justification: oy oy oy, just stop digging before you hit a water main or something.

I'm so bored of seeing this little scenario again and again and again.
 

Axyun

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Oct 31, 2011
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Note to self: When making own game, including lots of hot chicks = free publicity.

I'm currently working on a dieselpunk western fantasy action RPG. I'll make sure to make the female marksmen, engineer, and shaman outfits particularly slutty.
 

Ghaleon640

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Jan 13, 2011
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Gmans uncle said:
This... doesn't seem like something that needs to be a controversy.
Is it pandery? Yes. Is it immature? Eeyup. Is it sexist? No.
To call sexism on this is to call sexism on 99.9% of the entertainment industry. Sex sells. I always has. It always will. I'm going to agree with Jim Sterling on this one, the best way to end sexism in the modern entertainment industry is not less half naked chicks, it's more half naked dudes! That way everyone is objectified, and we're all equally pandered too.
(And I'm not just saying that because I'm a bisexual guy)
Reminded me of a comic I like a lot. Hope you do too. http://thepunchlineismachismo.com/archives/777
 

Nick Angelici

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Feb 14, 2010
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Pointless shinanagins from people who try to make a story from something for attention.
I dont care.
I really dont.
Im buying Skullgirls because its going to be fun and interesting to look at.
 

MassiveGeek

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Jan 11, 2009
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GOOD FUCKING LORD WILL PEOPLE JUST STOP BEING SUCH BUTTHURT CUNTS ALREADY

Why does ANYONE give a fuck about this anymore? It. Doesn't. Fucking. Matter.
Women and men strutting their stuff in videogames, in movies, etc isn't an issue that should be blown up to this proportional size, there is absolutely nothing wrong with sexy girls/guys/aliens/things, and no, I don't think there is a problem with "sex objects" either. There is no problem here. YOU are making it out to be a problem, it's not on the game developers or artists it is entirely on your ass. Knock it the fuck off already.

/rant

Anywho, I'm going to buy this game. It looks really nice, the character designs are appealing and fighting games can be quite amusing.