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PurpleTentacle

Political correctness and feminism

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I guess I should admit that I am a Man With Opinions when it comes to fairytales; which is to say, it's not really old-school fantasy either in the sense of following the giants of C20th fantasy writing or in the sense of having much of a basis in folk fairy stories. It's 19th century style sanitised upper middle class Victorian fantasy, which I just don't like much as a genre. I dislike the "thou gaineth a WOMAN" plot trope that makes the female character a barely-animate quest objective with no agency, and the original KQ2 ending is very, very definitely falling into that trap in my opinion. It's obviously a matter of personal preferences and I imagine it may be just me that thinks this, but I think a few simple changes to the portrayal could have made the whole thing feel a bit less bland and C19th-tacky whilst keeping the "this is a shiny fantasy story of shininess" theme wholly intact.

Why must everything be politically correct? If we want blandness, then we could apply a politically correct standard and "make a few simple changes" over and over to works until there is finally nothing "offensive" to a particular narrow way of thinking. And it would still never be enough.

 

Please, all you developers out there, resist the urge to comply with the free speech-chilling, politically correct rules. I find it refreshing when games and other works show irreverence to the PC sensibility. Make the games the way you want to make them, and remember that there's nothing wrong with a little fan service. If you're worrying about whether your game will be perceived as classist or sexist or whatever-ist, and you're self-censoring yourself as a result, then you've already started the slide down a slippery slope with no end.

 

Anyway, I loved AGDI's KQ2+. It was brilliant how they tied everything together and improved upon the original. It still felt like the original, but augmented, as someone said earlier. I enjoyed every minute of that game, and after I finished it I told myself I would download or buy anything that team did in the future. That team clearly understands the classic Sierra adventure spirit very well. I hope they become hugely successful in the future and get to retire with private yachts just like the Williams have. AGDI/Himalaya are my heroes.

 

As for The Silver Lining by Phoenix Online Studios and what they did with the story and that game's overall quality, I thought it was atrocious, amateurish dreck.

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Right on, brother. Who gives a fuck if prevailing attitudes against women and ethnic minorities keep white men in power. I'm a white man. Why should I give a shit?

 

The only thing more annoying than a PC bore is an anti-PC bore. I have no problem with jokes or themes that aren't "polite", providing there's a point to them and providing they fit properly within the context of the story that is being told. It's the unthinking, cliché drivel that turns me off. A film like Dallas Buyers Club, for example, isn't PC, but tells an important story about how screwed up the world is/was. A film that simply shouts "fag" to get laughs isn't. Not a difficult concept to get your head around, really.

 

All I'd ask of developers is that they don't live in the 1950s. I find the sorts of stories that play on the "thou gaineth a WOMAN" plot tropes to do something new and interesting are worthwhile in themselves because... er... they're new and interesting. 

 

The ultimate ideal of political correctness, by the way, is that people won't have to censor themselves because they won't think like idiots in the first place. :)

 

I do love how "er... quite like this game, but does it have to treat women as objects>" is automatically painted as "free speech chilling". A very good tactic by those who want the freedom to act like dicks to censor... well, obvious irony is obvious.

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Right on, brother. Who gives a fuck if prevailing attitudes against women and ethnic minorities keep white men in power. I'm a white man. Why should I give a shit?

Yikes. Just saw this. Sorry, I don't buy the whole "change your game to how we say it should be or else you're oppressing women and anyone who isn't white, you evil oppressor" nonsense.

 

The politically correct demands are more a desire to control than anything else. What's offensive to me is when some (not talking about anyone here) cloak their demands in a "righteous crusader for the wronged and downtrodden" facade as they bully and smear non-compliant developers as "sexist" or "racist." Someone in another thread posted a link to a EuroGamer review that reminds me of this.

 

Anyway, the suggestion that games requiring you to rescue a female character harm women is the height of ridiculousness. But some politically correct critics, who could probably find objectionable, patriarchal, racist, sexist and whatever-ist content in any handful of pixels, if you gave them long enough, have to convince us that certain games lead to all kinds of terrible outcomes (e.g., "harmful to women"), since who would ever want to be seen as being anti-women. And then, when pressed to explain how such games are harmful, we hear critics claim that the real problem with non-compliant games is just that they're uninteresting or something. But, if you don't agree, you'll eventually be accused of being a racially insensitive person who is interested in maintaining a male-dominated power structure or something. That's why I don't buy that such objections are nothing more than wanting "more interesting" stories.

 

Developers who are faced with such demands could tell people like the EuroGamer reviewer where to stick their complaints. And then they could mock them further by creating villain game characters modeled after the PC speech police. Refusing to be cowed by the intimidation would win the developer many new fans.

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And here's the hyperbole again. Game developers are more than welcome to disagree with the complaints they get. Just as those who want to see attitudes changed can make their demands. I don't see what the problem is. If the developers don't see themselves as sexist or racist, then they should be able to defend themselves pretty easily against any accusations. And conversely, those who think otherwise can know whether to steer clear of the product.

 

There is also a massive difference between "don't play Mario because the damsel trope is sexist" and "Mario is a good game, but it would be good if this trope could be avoided". 

 

But, of course, campaigning for a better world is "intimidation". Because the status quo is natural, normal, and people shouldn't be "forced" to change their behaviour. Except, is that really what women's groups are doing? FORCING you to change your behaviour? Or are they railing against a system which they see as unfair and unrepresentative. Given that the status quo seems to be pretty well entrenched, they're doing a pretty shitty job of enforcing censorship, wouldn't you say?

 

If games companies don't want to be seen as anti-women, then it's a pretty clear choice in a democratic, capitalist society. 1) Don't give a shit. 2) Explain why the editorial choice was made and stand by it. 3) Make sure they make plot decisions which minimise or remove perceived bias.

 

Personally, I'm in camp #2.

 

The real issue here is that some people have a really, really hard time understanding what "critique" is. It is perfectly possible to see problems in something and still enjoy it. It is perfectly possible to acknowledge that someone doesn't intend to be sexist or racist, but that their overall behaviour (individually or as part of a group) has unintended consequences. And it's perfectly possible to ask for changes in the way the games industry operates without "censorship". I genuinely don't understand why this is such a hard concept to grasp, or why so many people (mainly white, heterosexual men... hmmm....) get so angry every time they're asked to reflect upon their behaviour.

 

I love professional wrestling, for example. But I'd be an idiot if I ignored the way they play on national, racial and sexual stereotypes. Do I wish they would improve that sort of thing? Yes. I don't support companies that go too far with it. Do I have to reject everything that's great about it because of some of its darker side? No. The same is true of soccer (which I love). And certain video games (which I also love). One can criticise, and one can demand change without having to shit on everything it stands for. And, more importantly, labelling professional wrestling as "sexist" (it is) doesn't mean that the WWE should shut its doors tomorrow. Nor does it mean the WWE isn't entirely within its rights to tell me to go fuck myself (and no doubt it would... which is one of the reasons I'd keep watching! ;) ).

 

That's what the protests are about. Getting people in power to reflect on their actions and the deeper meaning behind some of the things they take for granted. Do they have to listen? No. Do they have to change their behaviour? No. But if enough people believe that the protesters have a point, that's when change gets "forced" either through peer pressure or the Darwinian nature of the market. Again - that's democracy. If it didn't exist, black people would still be slaves and women wouldn't have the vote. Indeed, the United States of America wouldn't even exist. George Washington - what a terrorist. :p

 

Your final line is great, by the way. I totally agree that developers could do this and win many new fans. They'd also alienate a lot of people. That, as I've already mentioned, my friend, is democracy. On that, at least, we can agree.

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It's intimidation when highly-damaging smears like "sexist" and "racist" are used to punish those who don't comply with politically correct demands. These are unique, poisonous slurs that stick, whether they are being used fairly or not. Someone posted a link to a EuroGamer review that employs this tactic.

 

To avoid the punishment, content developers will self-censor. In this way, politically correct demands (which favor particular groups over others), and their accompanying threat of harm, chill free expression. People are being bullied into avoiding particular speech because certain other people don't like what is being expressed.

 

Some fancy themselves politically correct warriors for a better world, condemning perceived objectionable racist or sexist material wherever they see it - and some people can find it anywhere! However, the standards are applied differently, depending on the group in question and its status in the latest p.c. hierarchy.

 

One of the reasons political correctness is so dangerous is that it can lead people, not just game developers, to fear speaking openly and honestly. Luckily, enough people are recognizing the insidious and absurd nature of the neverending politically correct grievance mongering and are calling it out for what it is.

 

Game developers, make the games you want to make, the way you want to make them, and don't worry about running afoul of the language police. If they throw a hissy fit, wear it as a badge of honor... and hope enough fair-minded people come to your defense if that happens.

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Don't confuse freedom of speech with freedom from consequences. You can say whatever you want, but be prepared to face the consequences when you say something deeply offensive to someone else. As for game developers, the makers of a commercial product have to bear in mind the affect on marketability if they alienate vast swaths of their potential customer base. If they do not mind losing half or more of their potential customers, then by all means, they can blow all of that development money by getting as nasty as they want towards a big chunk of the people to whom they hope to sell the end product. Remember, even if you do not find some name or term offensive does not mean that it is not deeply cutting and offensive to others.

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Just for the record, I'm with Purple. Policital correctness can be the most dangerous form of bigotry out there and I'd advise peopel to be wary when courting its use. It's easy to fall into a holier-than-thou personality pit without realizing it, thinking that everything you're saying and doing is actually helping when in fact it's causing just as much damage. I'm not saying anybody here is doing that, by the way. But I see this everywhere.

 

I do think you're being a bit unfair and excessive though, drslash. You're painting a lot of things with the same broad-stroke brush. Just because a storyline has a cliche valiant heroic prince and an equally cliche helpless princess that needs rescuing from a tower doesn't mean that the storyline is automatically "thou gaineth a woman". Not everyone considers female helplessness and male heroism to be sexist or objectifying and demeaning to women. A lot of women might, but a lot of women also don't. It's not all about male superiority at all. It may have been maliciously used to that extent sometimes, and maybe it still is somewhere somehow and that's unfortunate because I think most of these cases are taken grossly out of context. I still don't believe it has anything to do with objectifying women and over-glorifying men. Believing that every single use of this "trope" is born from such negative and low intentions is evidence of the same narrow-mindedness you're accusing them of having.

 

Now, I'm all for variety and I'll be the first one to say that I hate cliches, but I also know that there's nothing wrong or destructive to society about them. If people like them (and people DO like them, men and women) they can enjoy them. Those that don't can look elsewhere. They can even make petitions for new kinds of stories. Variety IS the spice of life. But you don't need to attack the cliches or the cliche-lovers just for liking the mundane (or the "tried and true", as many would call it I'm sure. It's all about perspective). Sure, go after the people who ARE objectifying women and propagating inequality, but not everybody's doing it just because they like prince-saves-the-princess stories. It's not about "gaining a woman" anyway. That embellished and twisted description has always bothered me. It was always about finding true love, at least that's how I remember it as a kid.

 

I don't know what was so wrong with the 1950s anyway. According to my grandmother it was the greatest time to live in. Not near as much crime as nowadays, everything was clean, everyone was friendly and happy. Moreso than today, anyway. Of course I wasn't there so what do I know.....what do any of us know?

 

 

 

The real issue here is that some people have a really, really hard time understanding what "critique" is. It is perfectly possible to see problems in something and still enjoy it. It is perfectly possible to acknowledge that someone doesn't intend to be sexist or racist, but that their overall behaviour (individually or as part of a group) has unintended consequences. And it's perfectly possible to ask for changes in the way the games industry operates without "censorship". I genuinely don't understand why this is such a hard concept to grasp, or why so many people (mainly white, heterosexual men... hmmm....) get so angry every time they're asked to reflect upon their behaviour.

 

No offense, but it's also possible that some people are just too touchy and sensitive and are making mountains out of flat terrain. Not everybody has a problem with it. Just because a certain group of people do doesn't mean that everyone has to change their tastes and the things they enjoy for them. The mundane is popular because there's an audience for it. Deep down everybody still loves the rescue-the-woman "trope". That's why it's successful. That's why it's used so often. It's not indoctrination. At best it's pandering, and that's a whole other issue. But saying "we have too much of one thing and need more variety" is entirely different from saying "what exists is evil and needs to be replaced and anybody who enjoys it is contributing to a destructive society". This whole debate is remeniscent of violence in video games provoking school shootings and teen violence.

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I'm not really an "expert" in this particular field by any stretch, but I still thought that I'd toss in my own thoughts:

I admit that as of late, there have been times when I've been writing and thought, "Maybe I should change this so it isn't interpreted as being sexist/offensive somehow" over and over again, until everything pretty much grinds to a halt. Sure, my writing tends to be pretty tame, but the way some people have voiced their complaints about elements they've perceived as sexist/offensive in video games has made me feel very self-conscious about it.

As a rule, in fiction I've been far more interested in raw ideas than actual characters and their interactions with one another. If I were to voice a complaint against the Damsel in Distress cliche, it wouldn't be necessarily because it's sexist, but because it's overused. A prevalance of highly attractive, young women starring in adventure games was reason why I decided to make a not-so-attractive, old(ish) woman into an adventure game protagonist -- not because I was thinking, "Hey, this would strike a blow against sexism in gaming", but "Hey, this would be something different to try". "Be the change you wish to see in the world", that sort of thing.

(And this may sound pretty naive, but it seems a lot of this debate seems like it might be better spent actually coming up with ideas for games that both avoid sexist/anti-PC tropes (without coming across as overly forced or pandering) and have some level of innovation and enjoyability as well. There seem to be a lot of walls being put up between segments of the gaming community when all that energy could be used to build something much better.)
 

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I'm going to quickly jump to drslash's defense here, because I think you guys may have missed his point somewhat. It was not a point of "you should censor your thoughts and deeds because it might be construed as sexist." It was a point of "if you're going to do or write something that could be perceived as sexist, look into yourself and ask if you are able to defend this decision intellectually."

 

I think a lot of this "cry wolf" mentality from both sides comes from a fear of change and fear of realizing that things might be more complex than they were in the 50's. "Holy shit, women are people, too? And not just the obedient door mat who fetches my slippers and cooks my dinner?" We have finally progressed to the point where we can make fun of these unfairly skewed gender dynamics, but some people who are stuck in this fear of change see that as an attack on their "values." Even though their "values" in this case basically amount to lazy misogynism because it's easier to treat a woman as a "wife" rather than a "person."

 

Also, fuck the 50's. At no point in modern history do I think contentment has been a shallow veneer masking our collective fears of change more than that hellish decade. "What, there are other races than white? What, women want to vote? Dear god, when will the atomic bomb turn us all into giant mutants? We are so fantastically dumb."

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Precisely, Troels.

 

I do think you're being a bit unfair and excessive though, drslash. You're painting a lot of things with the same broad-stroke brush. Just because a storyline has a cliche valiant heroic prince and an equally cliche helpless princess that needs rescuing from a tower doesn't mean that the storyline is automatically "thou gaineth a woman". Not everyone considers female helplessness and male heroism to be sexist or objectifying and demeaning to women.

I know. And I agree with you. The point is, if you're accused of such behaviour, make that very argument and move on.

 

No offense, but it's also possible that some people are just too touchy and sensitive and are making mountains out of flat terrain. Not everybody has a problem with it. Just because a certain group of people do doesn't mean that everyone has to change their tastes and the things they enjoy for them

Exactly. So, defend your editorial choices and move on. Simple. My point is that some people see it as an issue, some people don't. That debate shouldn't be stifled by either side.

 

I do agree, however, that the political left has cried wolf a fair few times. But just because they've made some stupid arguments doesn't invalidate all of them. And again, just because some editorial choices can be defended doesn't mean there isn't a problem with the overall culture in the games industry. That's why the debate continues, and should continue.

 

Game developers, make the games you want to make, the way you want to make them, and don't worry about running afoul of the language police. If they throw a hissy fit, wear it as a badge of honor... and hope enough fair-minded people come to your defense if that happens.

Which is a point I also made, and I agree with you. All I'm saying is, be aware that you will also alienate a lot of people by doing so.

 

"It's bullying"

Bullying is where a group or person with power picks on people smaller than them to silence or intimidate them. A small band of lefties protesting against a games company isn't that. Now, could an individual small company be irreversibly damaged by such a thing? Possibly, and I think this is a problem when unfair accusations are made. But the whole industry? The whole white-male dominated status quo? Come on.

 

As a rule, in fiction I've been far more interested in raw ideas than actual characters and their interactions with one another. If I were to voice a complaint against the Damsel in Distress cliche, it wouldn't be necessarily because it's sexist, but because it's overused. A prevalance of highly attractive, young women starring in adventure games was reason why I decided to make a not-so-attractive, old(ish) woman into an adventure game protagonist -- not because I was thinking, "Hey, this would strike a blow against sexism in gaming", but "Hey, this would be something different to try". "Be the change you wish to see in the world", that sort of thing.

This was a point I made in an earlier post, and I completely agree with you. It's the laziness of the cliches that annoys me.

 

***

 

What worries me most is that the rabid anti-PC brigade is as guilty as the PC brigade in using the term "political correctness" as a slur against campaigners. Thereby trying to silence or invalidate the debate as automatically some sort of conspiracy against men or against free speech. The lack of self awareness from both sides is actually rather amusing. But, as Akril says, the vitriol in it is distracting people from just going out and making good games.

 

All I want is for game makers (and everyone) to take a few seconds in their day to think "is what I'm doing discriminatory?" And if "yes", "is it justifiable?" That's all it ought to be. The automatic over-defensive posture of some gamers - like the pathetic rants against the suggestion that there ought to be female Kerbals in Kerbal Space Program - is as dangerous. Indeed, given the power of the games industry, stifling debate in such a way is probably more dangerous.

 

Don't fear debate. That goes for both sides. It's a good thing.

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Always count on Star Trek as a shining beacon to an enlightened future - by getting rid of of PC altogether.

"In our century, we've learned not to fear words." - Beautiful! Unfortunately, in our century, we seem to be steering in the polar opposite direction.

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"In our century, we've learned not to fear words."

Exactly. George Carlin made the same point. Words are just words. It's the intent behind them that matters. If you say or write something that's gonna push people's buttons, they're going to want to know what your true feelings on the matter is. Therefore I think it's important to have self-reflection, especially in the creative arts -- because what you put in writing or other creative outlets IS going to outlive you, and thereby your means of personally defending or explaining it.

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Always count on Star Trek as a shining beacon to an enlightened future - by getting rid of of PC altogether.

 

"In our century, we've learned not to fear words." - Beautiful! Unfortunately, in our century, we seem to be steering in the polar opposite direction.

And I agree. But you can only get to that stage when people are genuinely equal. It suits those with a disproportionate amount of power to think their words are neutral, when they're anything but. Language is never neutral. But it's also a clumsy tool. What people mean, what they say and what people hear aren't necessarily the same thing, and that's not always the fault of the speaker.

 

I believe that we should focus on the intent behind words, like George Carlin. But when someone gets offended (whether they are justified or not), all I would like is for people to reflect on how they may have been misinterpreted. That's all. So while I think the fact that some US politicians have had their careers ruined by using the word "niggardly" is patently absurd, I think it's shocking that someone like Dan Snyder refuses to even contemplate why "Redskins" might be offensive to some. (And no, I'm not saying the Redskins SHOULD change their name; just that the management isn't engaging in the discussion properly.)

 

We've got into this situation, in my opinion, because some idiots have screamed "RACIST!!!" for so long they've forgotten the deeper reason for why they're doing it. More importantly, they've failed to explain what they're trying to achieve. That's turned a lot of potential allies away because they don't feel like they can ever make the right compromises. By the same token, some people who fear change have used this as a crutch, and use it to excuse or even legitimise their behaviour. Both types of people need their skulls cracking.

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I think the critiques are ok IF they actually understand the game and what it's doing, but it is annoying

when a reviewer clearly does not really understand what's going on and is just crying "sexism" etc. at anything.

 

With something like the Eurogamer review of Leisure Suit Larry, part of the misunderstanding seemed to come from the

reviewer not getting that it was aimed squarely at guys and with a certain type of humor

(eg. Monty Python surrealism, Blackadder style wit and language, etc.) and not taking any of that into consideration.

 

The dialogue all the way through the game is very wry and satirical, including things like breaking the fourth wall with the "Larry

factory" and other surreal humor. I think the game goes out of its way to show that it's not a realistic depiction and I don't

know how anyone could not pick up on that, unless they were so focused on the sexism angle that it blinded them.

 

LSL is clearly not meant to inform anyone's life choices and I'd be very surprised if it has done.

I spent many an hour playing LSL when I was around maybe 10 or so and even then I knew this was a game that

was highly satirical and the fact it was so risque was part of the thrill of playing it, especially as a kid. 

 

Part of it also may just be down to lack of historical knowledge on the reviewer's part:

LSL is seen as a classic game, pioneering in many ways, including its subject matter and to not address that while critiquing 

it from just that one angle of it being sexist made the reviewer seem very ill informed.

It would be like if someone reviewed Doom and just complained about how violent it is and how it'll

make kids violent for the entire review without looking at anything else.

 

The King's Quest critiques are a little different... the stories are based around traditional forms

and tropes, so the critique isn't really with the games, it's with the traditional forms they're using.

 

The thing is, when you use that traditional form, you're doing it to evoke some of the nostalgia

and feelings that people have about that kind of story... if you alter it, it kind of defeats the

object of using the established form.

(I.e. if you add a modern update to a traditional story format, it's going to lose the "traditional" feel.)

 

Having said that, I think it's a more genuine critique than the LSL one, because it at least understands what the

game is about and what's going on and it isn't just a blind attack.

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Also, fuck the 50's. At no point in modern history do I think contentment has been a shallow veneer masking our collective fears of change more than that hellish decade. "What, there are other races than white? What, women want to vote? Dear god, when will the atomic bomb turn us all into giant mutants? We are so fantastically dumb."

Ah, yes, the 50s. The age of "duck and cover", the Jim Crow South and poverty rates approaching 20%. Where "Strange Fruit" was still acceptable. I guess that "the greatest time to live in" is all relative, depending on where you lived, the color of your skin and your economic circumstances. But then, "nostalgia ain't what it used to be."

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There is also a perception that crime is rising, but according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics statistics crime, especially violent crime, has been dramatically dropping.

 

http://www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?ty=abu

 

and

 

http://www.wanttoknow.info/g/violent_crime_rates_reduction :

 

The number of violent crimes in the United States dropped significantly last year, to what appeared to be the lowest rate in nearly 40 years
 

In all regions, the country appears to be safer. The odds of being murdered or robbed are now less than half of what they were in the early 1990s, when violent crime peaked in the United States. Small towns, especially, are seeing far fewer murders: In cities with populations under 10,000, the number plunged by more than 25 percent last year."

I suspect that the false perception is because crime is over covered on TV ("If it bleeds, it leads") in this era of 24/7 news cycles.

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I basically agree with everything said thus far. I do want to clarify something, though.

 

I never meant to say that the 50s were a golden perfect era. I said we have no idea because we weren't there...at least probably most of us. It's become a fad to hate on past generations, which I don't entirely understand. We wouldn't be where we are without them. Sure they had their problems, but it's not like we've got everything perfectly figured out right now. I'm not that fond of the 21st century so far, myself. We've got loads of problems rooted in bigotry all over the map that breed discrimination in some form or another to every minority (and majority for that matter, which means everybody is affected really) and it's only getting worse. People aren't learning to live and let live any more than they were 70 years ago (if indeed they weren't), it's just now with different issues. We've come a long way in some ways and there are a lot of good things in this world, but we just start falling behind in other ways. Some people call it progress just because we're years ahead of the game. I can't agree with that. Just because we've solved problems now that existed 70 years ago doesn't mean that we're doing everything better and it doesn't mean that everything done 70 years ago was wrong and that just because we're further along in history somehow means we have the right to say that we know better. Someone gets mad at somebody else for not "getting with the times", as if their view is already some universally accepted axiom (which is proven false because someone is obviously disagreeing with it) with no other possible explanation, even though they are accountable to nothing and nobody for it, which really frustrates me. And the only possible reactions to such heresy, if you will, that they can respond with is resentment, anger, hatred, and discrimination. See? They've become the very thing they hate instantly. The people who agree with it mostly do simply because the person saying it has a good argument and they just latch onto it, but they don't think for themselves because they don't want everybody looking down on them. Doesn't make it right. Self-reflection was mentioned. Something equally important is reflection and consideration of others for their possible alternative explanations which are also important because there are always alternatives. I'm not one for absolutes. That's being narrow-minded, if not downright closed-minded. Nobody is a mind reader. Nobody can claim they know exactly what others are thinking. Requesting clarification is what everybody should be doing, but they're not.

 

I just find that a lot of people hop on the protest bandwagon too much and shout 'revolution' over things that aren't even issues (or wouldn't be if they just ignored them, which for most cases would solve the problem instantly) because everyone else is doing it. Just because it makes sense doesn't mean there isn't a good counter-argument and it doesn't make it right either. It's the same with abusing free speech. Of course I agree that just because you can say something doesn't mean you should. But whether it's abuse of free speech at the deliberate expense of others or ganging up on and calling something evil and destructive because it MIGHT send a different message than was ever intended, both are at fault. All of it in either case is rooted in a mentality of self-entitlement and self-importance which doesn't help any cause. Because then it's not really about the cause at all, it's about you and your pride. Has getting angry and shouting at a problem ever helped? More often than not it just encourages its growth, again because of self-entitlement. "You shouldn't do that because I think it's ruining society!" "Oh yeah? Well, I don't have to listen to you. I'm doing it anyway! How do you like that?" Again, I'm not saying anyone here is doing that, but that's always what these things lead to. It's human nature against itself. What's the point? Why bother? We're just creating more and more problems for future generations to learn from and solve and call us morons for. And I think the whole problem is because we think we're smarter than anyone that ever came before us, and that just makes us as bad as them.

 

Well...a bit of a rant, but that's how I feel about it all. This wasn't directed to anybody here, I'm just venting I guess.

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As for The Silver Lining by Phoenix Online Studios and what they did with the story and that game's overall quality, I thought it was atrocious, amateurish dreck.

Since this thread only came about by derailing the Ace Hardway thread, I think it‘s only fair if I derail this thread by stating that via the now-released Moebius, I got hold of The Silver Lining as well (which Phoenix Online Studios offer for free on their store). I‘m genuinely curious whether it really is as irredeemably awful as PurpleTentacle made it out to be.

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The PC clown brigade claims another victim.

 

Seriously, whenever I read anything by those litcrit wannabes, it makes my blood boil. Funny they'd want to sacrifice a game like Moebius on their altar. You'd think a game written by a woman and featuring a snarky gay dandy as its protagonist would at least get some sympathy points.

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Well, John Walker isn't the best of writers. Over on the Serena team, we did a bit of a double take when he posted a review (before release and with a few vague spoilers, even). The man has a right to his opinions, but some of the criticism was still a bit weird.

 

He has that feeling of entitlement to him, IMO. Wouldn't judge him to be a PC clown. Just an occasionally bad reviewer...

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