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Killer is Dead’s Suda 51 – sexuality in games “a touchy subject,” doesn’t mean to offend

Saturday, 22 June 2013 20:52 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Killer is Dead’s Suda 51 has said he doesn’t look to be offensive, what with Gigolo Mode missions included in his latest game, but he also doesn’t intend to change the way women are portrayed in his games.

Speaking with GI International, the Grasshooper Manufature boss, whose previous titles include heroines weaning short cheerleading outfits or using sex as a reward, said there will always be criticism, but in the end, he’s just trying to create something fun that will make people laugh.

“I think in a way when you get criticism, that means people are paying attention to your work,” Suda said. “Any kind of artistic value, anything you create, there’s always some kind of criticism behind it. Which means we’re making an impression and an impact. So I think we’ll stay with what we’re thinking and just keep going with that way of thinking…And when I say that, sexuality is a touchy subject.

“We don’t want to make people offended, but we’re trying to create something that makes people laugh a bit because we’re [dealing with] that topic.”

Killer is Dead releases on PS3 and Xbox 360 in August. It will be published in Japan by Kadokawa Games, in North America by XSEED, and Deep Silver in Europe.

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60 Comments

  1. ps3fanboy

    as long it is all about the pussy and not the cock, it’s fine…

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Clupula

    @1 – And what would be wrong with that?

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Hcw87

    @2
    Pretty sure 90% of male gamers are hetero and don’t want cocks in their games.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Clupula

    @3 – You’re probably right. I mean, we all know how poorly GTA IV sold.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Hcw87

    GTAIV would still sell well if it had gay sex in every third scene.

    Still makes it wrong though.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. ps3fanboy

    @3 yes and with that said i have a warning to come with. the mass effect2 game was risky, if you didn’t pay attention to the talking. you could actually end up in bed with a guy in that game. that was quite shocking to find out, i did see a youtube video of one of the victims. the game wouldn’t let him get out of that situation, he was in tears at the end. so you should pay attention to the talking when playing that game, or it can go very wrong.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Clupula

    @5 – How is it wrong, though? I mean, it’s just different from you’re into. I’m often recommending stuff to my gay gamer friend that I think he’ll enjoy. He was overjoyed that you could put the main character into a thong in Dead Rising 2, for example. It’s not what I like to see, but I have no problem with whatever people like. If I prefer to play as female characters, partly because if I have to stare at a bum for 15 hours, I’d prefer it be female, I don’t see why gay men shouldn’t get some eye candy, as well.

    @6 – Wrong. There is no gay sex in Mass Effect 2. I know, because I was very disappointed that my FemShep couldn’t get with Jack, who, from her own story, was bisexual. It is Mass Effect 3 that has more fluid sexuality and I think the game’s better for offering more options.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. Clupula

    If you guys are so afraid of cock, how do you shower?

    I think I’d actually like to see the expressions on your faces fighting the last boss of Dante’s Inferno, with his massive, swinging, knee-length dong, complete with realistic physics when he moves.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. ps3fanboy

    @7 ok, i may be mixing up the 2 for a 3. but having cock ingame is just wrong… just saying.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Hcw87

    As i said above, when it comes to having sexual themes in games (doesn’t matter what it is), i (and most gamers in general) would prefer having female body parts versus male bodyparts. It’s just how the human mind works when you’re hetero.

    I cringed when slapping people with dildos in SR3, but it doesn’t mean i avoided the game for example. Also played through Dante’s Inferno, can’t remember what you’re describing though.

    Also, big difference between taking a shower and a sexual theme in a game, just saying.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. Clupula

    @9 – You didn’t answer why it’s wrong, though. Just because you aren’t into it is no reason to keep it out of a game. Are you a mass murderer? If not, then how do you not have a problem killing thousands upon thousands of enemies per game? Hell, fuck being a mass murderer. The amount of deaths we inflict in gaming would qualify us more as genocidal madmen.

    Yet, a cock is completely unacceptable.

    We aren’t ever going to get to a more intelligent, respected place in gaming if we can’t stop acting like 13-year-olds who giggle every time someone says, “Boobies,” and hide our faces if there’s a dick being shown on screen.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Clupula

    @10 – Here, let me refresh your memory. Satan is pretty well hung.
    http://youtu.be/Y4eajk8jxJQ?t=1m41s

    And then the ending of the game has not just cock but a very furry bare man-ass.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. ps3fanboy

    @11 its just wrong and it is self explanatory…. i have a suspicious you are living in the cupboard.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Clupula

    @13 – I’m not even sure what living in a cupboard means. I know being in the closet means that you’re not willing to admit your sexuality, which I certainly am not. Kinda wish I was bi, then it’d be twice the sex for me, but nope, not into the cock. But no problem with people who are. And being I have one I’m quite proud of, I have no problem with one being in a videogame.

    So, it isn’t self-explanatory. Please do elaborate on why exactly is it wrong. What’s wrong about it?

    #14 2 years ago
  15. ps3fanboy

    puh!… you had me for a minute there, i was sure you was a cupboard hider. thank god you was not, this was a relief.. but back to the topic… being bend is like going for the less package, woman have so much more to offer if you know what i mean. like three holes instead of two and they got boobs. the best part is you can have kids, with a bend you only are doing the shitter. it is just not what you are made for. you know it is really self explanatory…

    #15 2 years ago
  16. livewired500

    I swear we need IQ filters for the internet…..

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Ristas

    I know ps3fanboy is just trolling, but jesus christ guys, could you just ban him already? The very fact he’s been trolling for months here should be reason enough for that.

    Not once have i seen him actually contributing to a discussion. It really poisons your (already quite poinsed) community and comment section.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. ChunkyLover112

    #15 – lol, you’re such a loser :)

    #18 2 years ago
  19. Ireland Michael

    If you’re an adult, the expression of sexuality shouldn’t really be an issue. If it offends you, the problem isn’t with really the content.

    If you want one gender represented more than another, that just makes you – male chauvanist pig. Especially when the content is fluid, and you don’t have to be exposed to it unless you intentionally pursue that direction. (Mass Effect / Dragon Age).

    Newsflash: Women are sexual too. Deal with it.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. salarta

    The only times when female characters turning out to be heavily sexualized are a problem are when there’s a blatantly misogynistic intent behind that sexualization, and when it’s overly sexualizing a character that was never meant to be treated that way in the first place. For example, it’s perfectly fine for Bayonetta to be excessively sexualized, because she was created to be that type of woman. By contrast, it’s not okay for Aya Brea to be treated that way because she was never meant to have her sex appeal as a critical component of her identity. The real, original Lara Croft also fits the Aya Brea bill, but I can see why some people would erroneously think she’s supposed to be a sex object because later games increasingly made her look like one.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. DSB

    @20 Talk about retroactive continuity.

    Here’s the cover art for the original game:

    http://www.mobygames.com/game/tomb-raider/cover-art/gameCoverId,12633/

    Here’s a screenshot:

    http://www.mobygames.com/game/dos/tomb-raider/screenshots/gameShotId,48018/

    That’s a triple-D polygon if ever I saw one.

    #21 2 years ago
  22. Ireland Michael

    @21 Indeed. If anything, Lara is the perfect example of how a character becomes desexualised over time, to the point of actually managing to look like a real woman eventually.

    #22 2 years ago
  23. salarta

    @21: She has breasts. Breasts are things women have. Breasts being as big as that do not make the character suddenly sexual or merely a sex object.

    #23 2 years ago
  24. DSB

    @21 It’s not the fact that she has breasts, it’s the fact that her breast are freakishly huge and rock hard. Either you’re blind or you’re being facetious.

    I hope it’s the latter, because if you’re seriously trying to tell me that you look at that cover art and see a perfectly natural woman with reasonable anatomical proportions, then you’re making it pretty obvious that you just don’t want to admit you’re wrong.

    Here’s the inside flap cover:

    http://pics.mobygames.com/images/covers/large/1021667442-00.jpg

    http://www.mobygames.com/game/tomb-raider/cover-art/gameCoverId,12636/

    Come on. You want to take the “I have no idea what you mean” position? For the purpose of fooling who, exactly? It’s pretty obvious to anyone with a pair of functioning eyes dude.

    #24 2 years ago
  25. Ireland Michael

    @23 No real woman in existence could possess breasts like that and maintain that kind of thin figure at the same time without plastic surgery. The back pain would also be unbearable. A waist that thin would snap in half, especially with a back that bends back that far, which is almost completely unrealistic.

    Old Lara is literally grotesque. Even when the games were new, I was disturbed and put off by her design. When we were getting anatomically reasonable, natural looking women with *actual personalities* in our video games, (such as Rinoa Heartilly, Claire Redfield, Elaine Marley and Nico Collard) why the hell would I want to look at that freakish monstrosity?

    It was completely over exaggerated in every way. There’s nothing genuine about it in the slightest. Or sexy. It’s pure over-sexualisation. It was bad CGI even back then.

    http://csbarielle.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/old-lara-croft-2013-lara-croft-tomb-raider1.jpg

    ^ Wow, look at how oversexualised she’s ended up…

    #25 2 years ago
  26. Mjorh

    we’re trying to create something that makes people laugh a bit because we’re [dealing with] that topic.

    So paper thin that can be blown away by the wind! man there are lots of other ways to make people laugh n obviously this way is too weak n even kinda exasperating!

    #26 2 years ago
  27. manamana

    And somewhere, in an anonymous datacenter, a lonely Tempora algorithm reads this stuff and giggles.

    #27 2 years ago
  28. salarta

    @24: Point is, she may have had what might have been considered to be sex appeal at the time, but that doesn’t mean that was the main thing about her or all there was to her, contrary to what many people like to claim. It’s one thing to have a character present sex appeal, it’s another for that to be the main thing about them.

    We’ve got a much more malicious form of fetishism for mistreatment of women going on now anyway. I’ll take the games where women that were created to be badass get to remain badass, with or without big boobs made out of some desire to add sex appeal.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. polygem

    @ps3: i really hope you are trolling…

    #19+1

    i sometimes wish this world wouldn’t be as oversexed and hedonistic as it often is but at least it should be fair to all sexes. i am hetero but that’s nothing you can choose.

    i loved my drag queen fable 2 character.

    if we have sex in games we need more gay sex in games too.

    #29 2 years ago
  30. Ireland Michael

    @28 There isn’t a “fetishism for the mistreatment of women” going on. The main problem with your claim is that fetishism denotes some sort or draw to or enjoyment of something. That doesn’t work because the thing in question isn’t being glorified you should enjoy or feel attach you… it is presented as a negative experience that the character most deal with.

    I dare say the media’s treatment of women is at the most mature and respectful it’s ever been. A movie or TV show with an empowered lead female characters who aren’t oversexualised or male arm candy was almost completely unheard until recently. Now its a premise that sells millions.

    People… especially women, simply want characters that bruise and suffer just as much as we do. It’s more relatable. It’s a form of heroism that people can actually relate to. Nobody wants action heroes anymore.

    Don’t get me wrong, sometimes its fine to just “be the hero”, but if you’re going to set in a game in a real world setting with a very real world premise, somewhat more realistic characters are too be expected.

    And before you start saying that this kind of treatment is limited only to women, you just have to look at the awkward but noble heroics of Joel in The Last of Us, or the paternal dedication of Lee in The Walking Dead, as two perfect examples that it isn’t.

    I see these sort of characters becoming far more frequent in the future, Ones like the two I just mentioned clearly indicate that the market is ready for and interested in it.

    #30 2 years ago
  31. Old MacDonald

    If he doesn’t mean to offend, he should just avoid having the game released in the UK. Because that’s typically where people get offended.

    #31 2 years ago
  32. Ireland Michael

    @31 People getting offended over anything and nothing is something of a universal constant. It is hardly relegated to the UK.

    #32 2 years ago
  33. KineticCalvaria

    Bit weird that you all think adding cocks and thongs to male characters is the only way to appeal to gays, just cos they’re gay doesn’t mean they’re some kinda sex crazed freaks. :D

    #33 2 years ago
  34. salarta

    @33: Pfft, didn’t you know? Gay men are all about effeminate accents, scarves, home design, the Village People and mankinis. :P

    #34 2 years ago
  35. ps3fanboy

    @17 Ristas, is like the only gay in town getting offended over anything and nothing…

    watch…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KrlzaBNgz-M

    #35 2 years ago
  36. lunayasha

    I guess no body here has heard of BL games.
    I for one cant wait until these titles can be released in the US.
    Guy’s if you want to look at huge flopping breast, be my guest, just as long as I get my yaoi/BL games.

    DRAMAtical Murder <3
    LIVExEVIL ~Shakunetsu no Edema~ <3
    Silver Chaos <3

    #36 2 years ago
  37. noamlol2

    it’s quite the discussion in the comment section

    better then the article itself

    #37 2 years ago
  38. DSB

    @28 That wasn’t your point at all. Your original point was that Lara Croft was somehow never meant to be sexualized, and that the later games made sure that she was. That’s clearly not the case.

    Old Lara had abnormal features that purely had the intent of making her look like a pornstar, although arguably a pornstar could never buy tits that defy gravity to such an extent.

    Let’s just agree that you had a case of selective memory on that one.

    I’m not really sure what mistreatment you’re referring to in this case. Is handing a woman a personality and giving her adversities to overcome really that offensive to you?

    Most people who have actually the played the game obviously see it as an improvement, including this feminist:

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/carolpinchefsky/2013/03/12/a-feminist-reviews-tomb-raiders-lara-croft/2/

    “The good news is, this version of Lara, while definitely off-balance and vulnerable, is one we can empathize with, and doesn’t project an aura of needing help. Quite the opposite, in fact: The game does an absolutely superb job of balancing her between inexperience and determination. Lara might be wounded and afraid, but she’s going to press on regardless. We do root for her, but she also demands our respect.

    Lara has long been considered one of the most well-regarded characters in videogame history. Now she’s one of the most real.”

    Which is part and parcel of what we’ve been saying for quite a while, but you know. Don’t let the actual game get in the way of your flawed ideas about it.

    #38 2 years ago
  39. manamana

    #28 tried hard. Got owned by a feminist :D

    #39 2 years ago
  40. ps3fanboy

    @39 he got bulldozed, LOL!

    #40 2 years ago
  41. salarta

    @38: By your logic, every female character that shows sex appeal is overly sexualized.

    Let’s just agree that this is exaggerating the badness of features we both know were included for a poor attempt at sex appeal.

    Mistreatment more as in transforming seeing women get beat up and killed into a more mainstream fetish. I didn’t even notice it as a problem until I started to see guro porn gain more mainstream acceptance with the latest game as the focus, places that normally only emphasize pantyshots and boobs suddenly showing off screencaps emphasizing impalings. I even took screencaps for future reference if necessary.

    Also, I can link to official articles written by women that say things that fit my concerns too: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/9893950/Lara-Croft-in-Tomb-Raider-I-dont-need-reminding-that-shes-a-woman.html

    “In many ways, back in those days, Lara Croft’s gender did not come into it. Yes she looked like a ridiculous schoolboy dream sex symbol – nobody naturally has a waistline that thin with boobs that big – but her physical attributes aside, her “character”, if you can call it that, was just as convincing, just as worthy, as the male shooters and fighters dominating other video games.

    In many ways, Lara was a superhero, so naturally she’d have bulging boobs and a tiny waist just like Batman and Superman have bulging muscles and chiselled jaws (because these are games and filmmakers’ ideas of what superhero looks like).

    I certainly didn’t find Lara Croft a negative role model, as many critics suggested. She went out into the world and treated it the same as men would. She was empowering. Just like Kill Bill’s The Bride. When it came to her skill, her fearlessness, her mental ability, she was just as good, if not better than the other male fighters around.

    What the new Lara Croft Tomb Raider game has done is bring her gender back into the game. We are reminded every other minute, when playing Tomb Raider, that this is a vulnerable, unskilled, scared, cold and hungry girl, trying to get out of the godforsaken place she finds herself in.

    When she first sees bad guys at the start of the game, she scrambles to get free of them, is noticeably frightened and worried. The ‘old’ Lara, as I’ll refer to her, wouldn’t have thought twice about killing these enemies immediately.

    All the new Lara wants to do is find her mates (they were all shipwrecked and have been split up).”

    By the way, there’s plenty more making the case in that article, and unlike me, she played the game.

    #41 2 years ago
  42. Ireland Michael

    @42 “By your logic, every female character that shows sex appeal is overly sexualized.”

    No, every character that looks liked a bad rendering of a cheap barbie doll porn star is overly sexualised.

    Example Given: Original Lara.

    “Mistreatment more as in transforming seeing women get beat up and killed into a more mainstream fetish. I didn’t even notice it as a problem until I started to see guro porn gain more mainstream acceptance with the latest game as the focus, places that normally only emphasize pantyshots and boobs suddenly showing off screencaps emphasizing impalings. I even took screencaps for future reference if necessary.”

    None of which is relevant to the game, since it never glorifies any of the suffering she deals with. 80% of her worst injuries occur within the first half hour of the story.

    Tomb Raider is many things, but it sure as hell isn’t guro porn. Of course, you wouldn’t actually know this, seeing as you haven’t even played it.

    #42 2 years ago
  43. ps3fanboy

    i liked better the spiky boobs tomb raider than the others..

    http://global3.memecdn.com/spiky-boobs_o_1316775.jpg

    #43 2 years ago
  44. Stephany Nunneley

    Right. I cannot believe this. Seriously. I should never have to open my email on my day off and see a link in it pointing to some of the shit I am seeing in here.

    It’s fine to have a discussion on the topic, and some of you are making very valid points, however no matter what your preference is, comments, like yours PS3 – are just wrong.

    How old are you PS3? I mean WTF? You cannot complain that people are picking on you for being a troll and then come on here and say “borderline” (and I use that VERY loosely because it is rather inflammatory) homophobic things and talk about all the “extras” women have to offer due to having “three holes”. God I about vomited typing that.

    I mean, how can you complain about people taking you the wrong way, and then act like this, and not expect the majority’s opinion to be justified? I expect better of you.

    I will take this up with the other staff members. Until then, consider yourself on probation.

    #44 2 years ago
  45. Djoenz

    PS3Fanboy you fucktard!

    #45 2 years ago
  46. Lengendaryboss

    Looks like i missed a few things.

    #46 2 years ago
  47. DSB

    @41 “Mistreatment” by your definition is common as dirt in videogames today, and it happens to men a lot more than it does women.

    Somehow I’m not surprised that some people would get their panties in a twist as soon as it happens to a woman, but personally I can only see it as progress that we have meaningful, strong female characters facing and overcoming the same problems as the male ones.

    Arguably the “rape scene” in Mafia II (focused on the male protagonist) was a lot more graphic than the “non-rape scene” in Tomb Raider ever got.

    Did the death scenes need to be as graphic as they are? Not really, I don’t think it adds a lot to the game, but from there and to supposing that there’s somehow a sexual or chauvanist motive for it is kinda worrying. Why go there? There is such a thing as bad taste, and I doubt that most people actually enjoy those scenes. To me they were quite a humiliating reminder that I failed to do something correctly.

    Unlike you I’ve actually played the game, so like most others who have done the same, I can respectfully disagree with the very forced perspective of the woman in your article. A lot of what she says makes no logical sense.

    Directly opposite to what she claims, this Lara is as good, and arguably better, than the men she fights. She kills half an island full of them.

    #47 2 years ago
  48. ps3fanboy

    @Stephany Nunneley, i don’t do nothing wrong, i didn’t attack anyone. Clupula asked i gave answered. english is not may first language, i dunno i dont mean to offend anyone. okay are we okay??? i honestly don’t think i did anything wrong here. i like your news articles better than daves… you know.

    #48 2 years ago
  49. xino

    if you don’t wanna offend why don’t use just ton down the sex or don’t add it at all, it’s logic!

    did I want to play a damn game with sexuality? no, i feeling play game for fun!
    to add sex to games just shows how demented people’s mind are.

    sex is fun but how fun is it to watch sexuality in games? you are not having the sex are you?

    #49 2 years ago
  50. salarta

    @47: I actually want to know examples of male protagonists getting treated to the exact same level of abuse as “Lara” in the new game. I can’t think of a single case. The closest that comes to mind is the Metal Gear Solid series for the torture scenes, and that only happens once per game, not a running theme. Though potentially to the credit of what you’re suggesting, Phantom Pain looks like it just might ramp up the torture.

    You mention a Mafia II rape scene. I never played the game, so I had to search for that scene on Youtube, and that means I may not have seen the right one if there were multiple scenes. If I saw the wrong one, please, link me to the correct one. The video I saw was not an actual rape, it was a couple guys threatening to rape the main character, only to get their asses handed to them in a fist fight. I was really hoping it would turn out that it showed off an actual rape on a male character, especially since a lot of people seem to act like rape is an issue only women have to deal with. Of course, since this is Mafia II, if it would have gone against what the main character is supposed to be like, then I’m glad it didn’t go that far. Regardless, a couple guys saying threatening things then getting beat up doesn’t in any way compare to a character actually being in a powerless, dominated position where the person dominating them could kill them or at minimum rob them of their dignity and self-respect. Again, only case I know of to do that with men is the Metal Gear Solid series, and unlike Lara, Snake wasn’t a symbol of power for his gender.

    I never said the development team for this “reboot” (really an idea for a brand new game with a brand new character, forced into an old IP) had a deliberately sexual or chauvinistic motive. I said what they made is turning mistreatment of female characters into a more mainstream fetish. It’s common for someone to create something with one intention, only for it to be taken a different way, and ultimately take a different road. It happened to Lara the first time around, and it’s going to happen again this time around. “We like seeing Lara get beat up a lot, please let’s see her get abused some more, the worse the better” becomes a selling point, one future teams may and probably will jump on. Just like “Lara has boobs” became a selling point over time.

    You may have only seen the graphic death scenes as a humiliating reminder you failed to do something right. Other people think differently. After all, I didn’t see the real Lara having boobs and ridiculous proportions as making her nothing but a pair of tits with guns, but other people prefer to imagine that’s what she is. Because they hated what they saw on the surface too much to look further. What can I say, that’s how people operate. They love it.

    Last point: she only kills half an island full of men once she does the typical horror film survivor girl thing of shedding her girly innocence and takes the same strength she’s seen of men for herself. It’s a trope that Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon parodied pretty damn well with the whole “after being tormented and pushed, her innocence shattered, the survivor girl goes and takes up a phallic object and therefore is taking the killer’s manhood unto herself to face him” thing.

    @44: While I’ve been ignoring ps3fanboy just like I ignore anyone that shows they choose to be ignorant (as opposed to merely having a different opinion), if my opinion counts for anything, I think he’s bad for the site. Many other users can’t seem to ignore the things he says, and that just often leads to discussions getting off track to focus on whatever antics he’s doing.

    #50 2 years ago
  51. Clupula

    @49 – Well, if we’re going to say that we should keep sex out of a game, because we’re not having sex, then I bring up my question I posed earlier, about murder in videogames. As I said above, the amount of deaths that we tend to inflict in games would probably qualify most of us as genocidal madmen if we were to tally them up. And being none of us have killed millions of people, in real life, then why is that in games?

    And I think sex something a lot more pleasant than murder, but yet people have a problem with sex in games, but not killing.

    The fact is that most games, these days, are interactive stories and as works of fiction, they should have the same palette available to them as other works of fiction. Whether that be violence, whether that be sex, whether that be politics. Whatever.

    I’ve said, many times, that I think, as a medium, games need to evolve. We need to become more accepting that a game can be more than just a plumber jumping on turtles and collecting gold coins or a soldier killing everything he comes across.

    And sure, Suda’s games tend to be a bit puerile, but he doesn’t pretend that they’re anything else, you know? I think there’s definitely room for sex in games, just as there’s room for sex in books, movies, and television. How it’s handled is up to the individual developers. It can be something immature like what Suda tends to do or it can be something more adult, like a David Cage would do. We can’t limit artists as to what they can and can’t add to their palettes.

    #51 2 years ago
  52. AmiralPatate

    I’m just going to say even if it’s offending it’s okay if it’s for the lolz.
    Then again, if it’s not offending and actually a decent rendition of adult relationship, Fox News will stil call you a nazi pedophile for showing 2 seconds of alien sideboob.

    #52 2 years ago
  53. DSB

    @50 From a gender perspective it makes no difference whether it happens to the protagonist or not.

    Considering that Lara Croft is never in danger of being raped, I’d say Mafia II has a lot more of a rape scene than anything in Tomb Raider.

    It’s quite a double standard you have there, though. Whether or not they “get their asses handed to them”, or whether your ass gets handed to them, entirely depends on the player. If you fail, we have to assume that you’re raped.

    In the same sense, the failstates won’t ever happen to Lara Croft if you do the quicktime events correctly. She’s obviously supposed to win.

    Just to mention an easy one, you get killed in Call of Duty several times over, and unlike Tomb Raider, it’s intended to happen, rather than simply being a failstate. In MW2 I think you survive the initial shot at one point, only to watch yourself get dumped in a hole and doused with gasoline. In Black Ops you get tortured throughout most of the game, and in World At War you’re almost executed by your Japanese captors.

    You get captured and tortured in The Darkness 2. Far Cry 3 heavily alludes to one of your male friends having been raped by one of the antagonists, who stabs you brutally if you fail the quicktime fight. Fallout 2 has you accidentally working as a fluffer on a porno film. There’s also a Mexican who says he’s gonna rape you (“pretty boy”) as a “reward” in the original Grand Theft Auto.

    There’s no shortage of violence or sexual advances against men, so I think it’s more than a little silly to consider it such a transgression when it happens to women.

    #53 2 years ago
  54. zinc

    ^ Good points. But as a Man, i’ve never feared rape. Ever. So its easy for me to laugh it off. I doubt i’m the only guy who feels this way.

    Maybe thats why your examples never strike a public nerve?

    #54 2 years ago
  55. DSB

    @54 I’m sure you’re right. But you can’t push an agenda that demands equality and then get upset when you actually get it, simply because some part of that equality makes you uncomfortable.

    Personally I find male rape and violence in games plenty unnerving though.

    #55 2 years ago
  56. Ireland Michael

    @50 “actually want to know examples of male protagonists getting treated to the exact same level of abuse as “Lara” in the new game.”

    You were already given a few exmples from me earlier, but here’s an obvious recent one.

    Lee from The Walking Dead.

    #56 2 years ago
  57. salarta

    @53: Nobody’s even saying Lara got raped or almost raped, or that there were even implications of it. The issue is getting beat down and forced into a powerless, dominated position.

    You’re stretching it when you say “If you fail, we have to assume that you’re raped.” If we took that approach, then I could say Lara’s corpse gets raped after she’s choked to death. Of course, that’s just sidestepping the real issue that a failure where you don’t see what happens and could leave what happens to your imagination is different from actually seeing what happens in detail.

    Whether or not Lara’s supposed to win is a moot point. What the death sequences tell us is that while it’s not what happens to Lara, it’s how she would have acted and how it would have looked if it did happen. The death sequences are just as much a part of giving an impression of the character and the overall story as anything else.

    Thank you for taking the time to give examples and videos of examples. If that sounds sarcastic, that’s not my intent; you took the time to find them, I appreciate that.

    I haven’t played any of the games you mentioned. I’ll respond as best I can given that. Far Cry 3: alluding to someone being raped is not the same thing as showing actual rape, or its consequences. Fallout 2: best as I can tell by the description, working as a fluffer is a choice, not forced or at minimum not with emphasis on suffering. Grand Theft Auto: a Mexican guy saying he’s going to rape you is not the same thing as him actually raping you or trying to do so.

    I set aside the Call of Duty ones because those ones are actually good examples of men being treated the same way “Lara” is treated. They’re undermined a little by being in first-person perspective, which doesn’t give the same effect as actually seeing their body when it happens, but in each scene you see other men getting tortured and killed. It’s going to take some time to get all my thoughts in order on that. I can say this for now: it looks like Call of Duty has set a precedent where it would be perfectly fine for a female character in that video game series to be treated that way.

    The same does not apply for a powerful female icon like Lara Croft used to be getting brought down to the same state. Guro porn becoming more mainstream as a result of stuff that happens to “Lara” demonstrates that. She was a symbol of female power. Now that her status as such a symbol has been torn away from her so that she’s more “human,” the thrill some have of seeing more of the once unstainable badass reduced to a broken mess is growing. I really don’t think it will be very long before we see it taken to maximum fetishization. She’s been tossed from the action star role to the horror film survivor girl one. We’ve all seen the trend for Hostel, Saw, Human Centipede, etc.

    Rape is considered such a transgression when it happens to female characters because women are at much greater risk of it as well as at greater risk of people threatening them with it. A game that genuinely depicts the consequences of rape would be a good thing, but not if it involves forcibly changing an existing character to fit that role, and especially not if it’s treated like a sleazy sales gimmick. This is why people were in an uproar over the idea of it happening to Lara Croft: not because she’s a woman, but because at the time, people actually remembered for a moment that she’s supposed to be an icon of female power, and rape is ultimately a power play to steal that power and dignity from another. The only difference between rape and death, really, is that with rape you’re still alive to feel the aftermath.

    Also, I hope you do not take offense if I don’t respond to one of your comments in this article. After I start writing a lot of text, and add a lot of comments to one article, I start to feel that it’s time to give it a rest and do something else. Especially since I increasingly find myself questioning why I bother to write long comments on websites to argue points with ignorant people (and I’m not calling you one when I say that).

    #57 2 years ago
  58. Ireland Michael

    @57 “The same does not apply for a powerful female icon like Lara Croft used to be getting brought down to the same state. Guro porn becoming more mainstream as a result of stuff that happens to “Lara” demonstrates that.”

    Tomb Raider isn’t even close to being guro porn, a fact already pointed out to you. (I love how you constantly ignore anything you can’t answer that proves you wrong.)

    Of course, if you’d actually played the game, you would know this.

    At the start of the game, she suffers a lot of enviromental injuries, and around the start there are maybe one or two scenes where men *try* to take control from here… to which they are swiftly beaten. By the one third point of the game, Lara is the one completely in control, and remains so for almost all of the rest of the story.

    In fact, when everyone else wants to give up and leave, *she* is the one refusing to do so and chastising everyone for even considering the idea.

    Of course, if you’d actually played the game, you would know this.

    “Whether or not Lara’s supposed to win is a moot point. What the death sequences tell us is that while it’s not what happens to Lara, it’s how she would have acted and how it would have looked if it did happen. The death sequences are just as much a part of giving an impression of the character and the overall story as anything else.”

    This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Death scenes are a part of the characters identity? In that case, any time a male character died they must be weak and fragile and blah blah blah.

    What else is a character going to do in a death scene? Do a dance and thank you for playing?

    This has to be the most asinine stretch of reasoning I have ever heard in my entire life.

    “She was a symbol of female power. Now that her status as such a symbol has been torn away from her so that she’s more “human,” the thrill some have of seeing more of the once unstainable badass reduced to a broken mess is growing.”

    She is still a badass. She’s just a human one. Which is exactly what women and feminist want apparently, based on the overehemlingly positive reaction to the character. I don’t think even men want invulnerable badasses any more either, frankly.

    “She’s been tossed from the action star role to the horror film survivor girl one. We’ve all seen the trend for Hostel, Saw, Human Centipede, etc.”

    Except that Lara is not a helpless victim, and is never treated as such, a fact that completely kills any assumption you’re making.

    Of course, if you’d actually played the games, you would know this.

    #58 2 years ago
  59. cubman

    Wow… just wow. As an openly gay gamer, I am appauled by the juvenility of some of these comments. Some of you are coming across as childish, homophobic, retared and just plain ignorant.

    #59 2 years ago
  60. sh4dow

    @16: Yes! YES!
    It’s bad enough one has to deal with such people in the offline world already. But then having to read their ignorant, moronic nonsense everywhere online as well…

    Offline, they’ll at least usually simply not join a group of people that are on a different intellectual level. Or they won’t be invited to return, etc.

    #60 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    Very sad news out of Redmond this week, as Mike Ey was killed in a tragic accident. Ey, 30, was one of the key project designers on Microsoft’s HoloLens AR headset. He was killed on Saturday morning in a rear-end collision. The driver of the second vehicle fled the scene but was tracked down by […]

  • AMD throws support behind VR with new low-latency anti-nausea tech

    GPU manufacturer AMD has released a new SDK compatible with “a broad set of VR devices”. Called LiquidVR, the tech is designed to “bring better content, comfort, and compatibility to VR applications” including games, simulation, entertainment, education, social media, travel, medicine, real estate and ecommerce, apparently. AMD said maintaining comfort and realism in VR environments […]

  • Danganronpa 3 in the works, but a long way off yet

    A new Danganronpa is happening. Danganronpa 3 is in the very, very early production stages, writer Kodaka Kazutaka has confirmed. Nothing about the project is “set in stone”, Kazutaka told Polygon, so there are no details to share yet; the characters and story may change several times before being finalised. The writer said he’s weighing […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare MLG Pro League 2015 schedule announced

    Major League Gaming has announced the full schedule for the 2015 Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare MLG Pro League. The eSpots firm revealed two more seasons of Pro League, a live Relegation tournament for Season Three, and a season ending World Championship with $250,000 up for grabs You can watch all the action on MLG.tv […]

  • Happy Birthday PlayStation 2, you are almost old enough to drive

    Amidst all the GDC 2015 hoopla today, we forgot to wish PlayStation 2 a Happy Birthday. The system turned 15 years old today, going by its March 4, 2000 launch date in Japan. It was released in the west that autumn, and had shipped 100 million units in less than six years post launch. PS2 […]

  • Here’s what the final version of Valve’s Steam Controller looks like

    A look at the updated Steam Controller has surfaced via a hands-on post from Polygon. Valve said what you see in the images below is the final version of the controller. The controller has gone through numerous revisions since it was first revealed, but it seems Valve has decided on two touch pads which work […]

  • The Sims, SimCity developer closed down

    The Sims 4 developer Maxis has been shuttered, EA has confirmed. The Sims, SimCity and the rest of the Sim franchise has traditionally been helmed by Maxis, which had its flagship studio in Emeryville, California. Now EA has confirmed with Kotaku that this studio is being closed. “Today we are consolidating Maxis IP development to […]

  • Gigantic MOBA coming to Windows 10 and Xbox One with cross-play

    Today during GDC 2015, Microsoft announced that the new IP from Motiga called Gigantic will be cross-play enabled. Slated for Windows 10 and Xbox One, the five-on-five third-person battle arena game allows the player to select from an array of heroes with distinctive powers and play styles. Players will then make their way through areas […]

  • Here’s a look at Unreal Tournament DirectX 12 gameplay

    Epic Games is creating Unreal Tournament using Unreal Engine 4 running on DirectX 12, which Microsoft says “sets a new bar for visual fidelity.” DirectX 12 is a single API developers can access across Windows devices, which can result in a 20% improvement in performance over DX11 running on the same machine. The Unreal Tournament […]

  • Wireless adapter for Xbox One controllers out later this year

    Microsoft announced at GDC 2015 today it will that all wireless Xbox gaming accessories will be designed for and supported on both Xbox One consoles and Windows 10 PCs moving forward. Later this year, a wireless adapter will be released, allowing current Xbox controllers and future devices to be used wirelessly on PCs. This will […]

  • Microsoft offers up more details on Spencer’s GDC 2015 talk

    Microsoft has provided more details on Cross-Buy functionality between Windows 10 and Xbox One as well as the Xbox Live SKU and other announcements made during Phil Spencer’s talk today. During the session, the head of Xbox shared “the next step” in the company’s plans for a unified platform across all Windows 10 devices which […]

  • Wasteland 2 is coming to PlayStation 4 this summer

    Wasteland 2 is coming to PlayStation 4 as a Game of the Year Edition. inXile Entertainment announced the news on the PS Blog, noting the edition contains enhancements and improvements. The game has been ported to Unity 5, which was announced over the weekend, providing upgraded visual effects, “improved character models, upgraded environments, and Unity […]

  • Cross-Buy detailed for Windows 10 and Xbox One; Elite: Dangerous coming to Xbox One

    During Xbox boss Phil Spencer’s session at GDC 2015 today, it was announced Elite: Dangerous would release on Xbox One. Spencer also outlined cross-buy functionality across Windows 10 and Xbox One. Spencer’s talk started off with Frontier Developments announcing Elite: Dangerous for release this summer as a console debut on Xbox One, suggesting the Elite: […]

  • Longbeards Culture Pack available now for Total War: Attila

    The Longbeards Culture Pack is now available for Total War: Attila and it comes with three new playable factions. The Langobards, the Burgundians and the Alamans can be played in both single and multiplayer campaign modes as well as custom and multiplayer battles. A new feature called The Lay of Ybor is also included. It […]

  • Nvidia unveils Titan X as world’s “most advanced GPU” – video

    Nvidia revealed Titan X as “the world’s most advanced GPU” during Epic founder Tim Sweeney’s State of Unreal session a t GDC 2015 today. Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang took the stage during the panel stating it contains “8 billion transistors,” and has 12GB of RAM. Pricing wasn’t announced, but it was rumored back in January […]

  • Steam sale discounts titles announced for SteamOS

    With many of the year’s most popular games heading to SteamOS, Valve has decided to host sale in celebration. Here’s a short list of titles on sale. The full list of PC, Linux, Mac and SteamOS discounts can be found through the link. The Banner Saga Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Batman: Arkham […]

  • PayDay 2 announced for SteamOS, celebrating with franchise sale

    PayDay 2 is coming to SteamOS, Overkill has announced. Still under development, a release date will be announced at a later date. “Making sure PAYDAY 2 is available on SteamOS felt like a no-brainer,” said Bo Andersson Klint, CEO of Starbreeze in the press release. “With PAYDAY 2: Crimewave Edition coming to the next generation […]

  • Magicka 2 has a release date and a crazy new trailer

    Magicka 2 has a release date for PC and the PlayStation 4, and Paradox Interactive has released a trailer featuring “Vlad’s latest lyrical triumph,” which is his rendition of the Game of Thrones theme. Magicka arrived on PC and PS4 May 26 and the game can be pre-ordered on PC beginning today, with PS4 pre-orders […]

  • Nintendo eShop schedule: Don’t Starve: Giant Edition, Never Alone, others

    Nintendo has sent over a list of titles heading to the eShop in 2015. The schedule contains titles such as Affordable Space Adventures, Runbow, Swords & Soldiers 2, Don’t Starve: Giant Edition, Never Alone and Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars. Below a preliminary list of games scheduled to launch in the Nintendo eShop on […]

  • Week 8: Can you win the weekly VG247 GTA Online playlist? Play tonight at 8pm UK time!

    We’re hotdogging tonight. I don’t even know what that means. Eight weeks of ridiculous death. Such a brave, true milestone. We’re going to celebrate two entire months of playing weekly GTA Online playlists with VG247 readers with Hotdogging, a set of six jobs I named completely at random. This one ends with a straight-up border […]

  • Puzzle platformer Four Sided Fantasy coming to PC, consoles in early 2016

    Curve Digital and developer Logan Fieth’s studio Ludo Land are bringing puzzle platformer, Four Sided Fantasy, to PC all major consoles in early 2016. Ludo Land are developing the PC version, with Curve Digital handling the console and Vita versions. Four Sided Fantasy tasks players with venturing across “dreamlike levels” by controlling and manipulating the […]

  • Tropico 5 arrives on PS4 in April – video

    A release date for Tropico 5 on PlayStation 4 has been announced. This is the franchise’s first foray onto PlayStation consoles. It arrived in Europe on April 24 and in North America on April 28. A Limited Edition has also been announced, and it includes The Big Cheese DLC and the Bayo Del Olfato sandbox […]

  • Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain Limited Edition PS4 releasing in Asia

    A limited edition Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain PlayStation 4 system will be released in Asia. The system and its DualShock controller were designed in collaboration with Konami Digital Entertainment and targeted for the Asia region, per Gematsu. It will be released as part of PS4 Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain […]

  • This video shows Sid Meier’s Starships being played on iPad

    Sid Meier’s Starships will be released on iPad alongside Mac and PC, and to give you an idea on how it plays on the tablet, a new video has been released. Watch below as Pete Murray and lead producer Stuart Zissu show off the iPad version. The 4X space-strategy releases on March 12.

  • Wolfenstein: The Old Blood announced as standalone prequel to Wolfenstein: The New Order

    Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, a standalone prequel to The New Order, will release May 5 on PC, PS4 and Xbox One. The game takes pace in 1946, and and players take on the role of B.J. Blazkowicz as he embarks on a two-part mission in Bavaria. Part one, Rudi Jäger and the Den of Wolves, […]

  • Observer Mode coming soon to Evolve as a free update

    Observer Mode will be released for Evolve as a free update for all platforms, 2K and Turtle Rock have announced. The community feature was designed to give Evolve players the ability to observe and add commentary as well as livestream, allowing a sixth user to “passively enter a custom game” with the ability to switch […]

  • Dragon Quest Heroes and PS4 top Media Create charts in Japan

    The PlayStation 3 and PS4 skus for Dragon Quest Heroes were the top sellers on the Media Create charts in Japan, moving a combined 594,749 units. Elsewhere on the chart, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D was in third place with 39,751 units moved, and last week’s top seller, God Eater 2: Rage Burst, […]

  • Watch Hideo Kojima answer lots of your burning Phantom Pain questions

    What’s better than learning the official release date of MGS5: The Phantom pain? Hideo Kojima talking more about it, of course! Hideo Kojima has decided to answer a few fan questions about Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, to help boost everyone’s hype to insane levels. He talks about the game’s story, his relief […]

  • MGS5: The Phantom Pain Day 1 and Collector’s Edition revealed

    Konami has officially revealed the release date of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain alongside the game’s Day 1 and Collector’s Edition. Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain will release September 1, worldwide, as previously leaked. It will be available on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. The PC Steam […]