Home Gaming Take “SJW” Politics Out of Gaming

Take “SJW” Politics Out of Gaming

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Social Justice Warrior. A pejorative label applied to bloggers, activists and commentators who are prone to engage in lengthy and hostile debates against others on a range of issues concerning social injustice, identity politics and political correctness.

I first came across the term whilst perusing a Reddit post discussing the fake social activism that many came across on Tumblr. It was used to label stereotypically young, white, rich girls on Tumblr who championed causes they knew nothing about nor made any real, tangible contribution to.

Since then, I have seen the term used liberally in mainstream media to the point that even your everyday person knows and understands the term. It has seen widespread use in gaming particularly since the rise of GamerGate and the saga that followed that.

Due to how prolific its use is, the term has lost its meaning and is now applied to just about everything. That needs to end.

SJW Politics In Gaming

When it comes to gaming, SJW Politics is used to describe content that discusses gender, race and mostly anything that isn’t purely gameplay. I’ve seen on many game reviews, mine included, comments questioning the author for discussing anything outside of pure game mechanics, graphics and performance.

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Even locally, you see the South African audience resist being pulled into discussions that move beyond the realm of ‘pure’ gaming, for lack of a better term. That is not exclusive to game reviews, this same sentiment is found in articles that discuss social issues in the gaming scene.

In the last article I wrote, where I discussed the white boys club that is so often the norm in gaming, I was pleasantly surprised by the level of engagement. Some of the comments were well thought out and encouraging to see the depth of discussion it stimulated. But there were equally misguided comments and the large narrative of that side was that we need to take SJW Politics out of gaming.

And I couldn’t agree more.

The term has completely lost its meaning. Nowadays, it’s used by many across a swathe of topics that, whilst worthwhile to discuss and have an important place in gaming, are reduced to mere “rants”. The term is used to deflect from the issues raised. It serves as a shield that critics can use to brush off important conversations, much like the term “feminazi” is used to reduce feminist discussions to verbal rubble.

SJW Politics as a term doesn’t belong in gaming.  What does belong are social issues. Gaming is growing up. It’s time we did too.

Pushing the Limits of Gaming

I’ve never really understood why people are so resistant to the concept of social issues in gaming. This backlash to tackling social issues in games prevents the industry from growing and moving forward. It stifles the future of where gaming is headed.

Gaming is no longer just a hobby to pass time. It isn’t just art. It has become a powerful medium for discussion, views and progress. It’s a multi-million dollar sporting industry. As a famous uncle once said, with great power comes great responsibility.

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For so long, we as a global gaming community, have fought to change the mainstream perception of gamers. That we weren’t all overweight, socially inadequate teenagers sitting in our parents’ basement. That gaming wasn’t just this waste of time that detracted from people’s lives instead of adding to it.

Now, once we’re finally at that point where gaming is noticed and people are clawing to get in, it feels like many want to pump on the brakes and stop the evolution. People want to go back to the “golden days” where games were just about games. But isn’t that just so boring? Are we not curious to see how far this passion, and love of ours, can go? Social issues belong in gaming and it’s a staggeringly beautiful medium with which to tackle them.

A Powerful Medium – Social Issues in Gaming 

For many, gaming is an escape from the real world and I completely understand that. Having struggled with depression in the past, gaming was the constant that allowed me to take a break from reality and immerse myself in another world. There are certainly games that have that role of fantasy and fun. This isn’t an argument that games should all be serious and thought provoking.

This is about acknowledging that the real world and gaming are not mutually exclusive. There is absolutely space for games to give back to the world. Gaming has the mechanics, the people, the passion, the overall ingredients to really help shape and tackle narratives on important social issues, both locally and abroad.

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That approach can lead to more compelling stories and plots. Why do we not want more layered approaches to storytelling in games? Look at the fury that Destiny faced initially when it lacked any real narrative. We all want depth in our games. Tackling social issues gives us that very thing we all crave.

It would create a more inclusive space in gaming as people find stories and issues they can relate and contribute to. I’ve already spoken at length about the perception of gaming being a white boys’ club. Creating a space for people to add their voices and their stories, that would result in a hugely diverse community.

In my previous article, a commenter suggested that maybe people of colour aren’t interested in games due to cultural differences. I can’t speak for everyone but I really don’t think that’s the case. When people are interested, they show up.

Cultural differences don’t stop people from watching films or reading books. These are mediums that have both fun, light hearted content as well as influential pieces that challenge the world and tackle important issues. Gaming need not be different. Create the spaces for inclusive dialogue and people will come.

Having your beliefs and world view challenged is hugely beneficial to personal growth and development. Socially conscious games can create socially conscious gamers who have an enlightened view of the world and a better grasp of it. That leads to better equipped adults and a better society overall. It also leads to a better community, an issue that many gamers relate to.

Gaming Is Growing Up – Embrace It 

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I still remember the global outrage and shock that came about when Call of Duty’s Modern Warfare 2 was released and the now infamous airport scene was shared throughout the world. Back then, critics argued it didn’t belong in games but I remember how poignant that scene was for me.

It genuinely opened up my eyes to the horror of terrorism in a way I hadn’t experienced before. We’ve come a long way since then as the world has gotten used to the idea that games are not just light hearted time wasters. Gaming can change the world and really contribute to the growth of society. That concept is not just limited to books and films.

The possibilities for gaming and where we can go have never been more limitless. Social issues are here to stay, so I suggest you uncross your arms, unfurrow your brow and get involved.

Leave “SJW Politics” and similar terms at the door. This is about social issues in gaming. This is about changing the world.

Last Updated: October 17, 2016

184 Comments

  1. Umar

    October 17, 2016 at 12:05

    “SJW Politics as a term doesn’t belong in gaming. What does belong are social issues. Gaming is growing up. It’s time we did too.”

    https://media.giphy.com/media/Aue7IpAQFffMc/giphy.gif

    Reply

    • Glenn Kisela

      October 17, 2016 at 12:40

      <3

      Reply

    • hurin

      October 17, 2016 at 18:53

      And ‘growing up’ is worth exactly if Gamer won’t buy those games? Try paying your bills with social justice?

      You seem to forget that running a games studio means thousands of bills to pay, and if Gamers refuse to provide the money like it happened to Beamdog then what?

      Good luck selling your walking simulators to the casuals, because they don’t even read news sites like Lazy Corrupt Gamer.

      Reply

      • Glenn Kisela

        October 17, 2016 at 18:59

        I feel like you missed the whole point of the article…

        Reply

        • hurin

          October 17, 2016 at 19:04

          Not really important. My money my rules.

          What you SJWs have always failed to grasp, is that the wast majority of Gamers are casuals, but casuals will never read your articles in the first place. GamerGate cuts of your income, and subhuman journos go to bankruptcy court for not paying their student loans.

          Reply

          • Glenn Kisela

            October 17, 2016 at 19:18

            Missing the point of the article is not important to a discussion about the article?

            Sigh.

  2. Dutch Matrix

    October 17, 2016 at 12:23

    How’s about nope?

    Reply

    • Geoffrey Tim

      October 17, 2016 at 12:32

      And why the hell not? Just about every mature medium tackles social issues. Even something as silly as the Xmen stands as an allegory for civil rights, and games can and should tackle that sort of thing. Of coyrse, it goes without saying that not all games need to address social issues.

      A game like DOOM 2016 can still exist. Gratuitously violent, with zero diversity – and still be a great game. Where games allow for it, diversity, et all should absolutely be there.

      Reply

      • Archdruid Kromas

        October 17, 2016 at 12:42

        Games adressing social issues are fine but people adressing games not adressing social issues are getting out of hand. Let us take your example of Xmen. Remeber the uproar because of a poster showing a girl (Mystique) being choked by a man (apocolypse). People (won’t name the names I call them) were physically upset by the physical voilence of woman.

        I mean Xmen! FFS.

        I can’t even.

        Reply

        • Umar

          October 17, 2016 at 12:51

          That’s where the line gets blurry though. Sure, people go overboard, but then they start confusing social issues with that behavior, and as a result, it just gets labelled as “SJW” politics. The same goes for the reverse too. Those that are for diversity and social issues in games are labelled as SJWs . It’s a nasty cycle, but ultimately though, it’s up to the individual to make that distinction and it shouldn’t get in the way of the medium maturing…

          Reply

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:16

            Not blurry at all. Same example. The woman in question is not a housewife and the man is not her husband. they are essentially enemies in a huge war deciding the fate of humanity.The one procaliming himself to be a god and not caring for gender or race at all.

            Clear cut to me. Let me make another example in the opposite side of the spectrum. RE5 black zombies in AFRICA is racist.

            Seriously?? Black zombies in AFRICA … AFRICA!! ….. AFRICA!!!!!!!!!!. Sure maybe not all of them but I would say that most Africans are of African decent and not european decent.

            But hey I was called sexist the other day for opening a door. You can’t win. Just lock yourself up in your house and play DOOM.

          • Umar

            October 17, 2016 at 13:38

            No no, I dont mean THAT line. People shouldn’t get outraged at that nor should you be called a sexist, but those that want diversity shouldn’t insulted either. At times, its just stupid on both sides.

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:44

            Yeah but things are getting worse and unfortunately social media has not helped. Case in point #sciencemustfall. I don’t care if you add a homosexual or a black protagonist in a game. The only single time I would care and I mean really care is if you alter an established character to fit more cultural norms and luckely I am fairly certain that has not happened.

          • Glenn Kisela

            October 17, 2016 at 19:02

            So much truth to what you’re saying there!

          • Glenn Kisela

            October 17, 2016 at 19:01

            I hear your frustrations but I don’t think that justifies the way people react when social issues are brought into games.

            Sure some people take it too far but the overwhelming majority of issues brought up are valid. The point I’m making is that people need to be more open & accepting of social issues being brought into games. The backlash when it happens is disproportionate to the issue being raised.

          • TheCellGames

            October 18, 2016 at 05:17

            The issue with bringing in social issues is what people make of gaming because of the themes it covers. Example, Anita Sarquisian (or however you spell that crazy woman’s name) and feminists getting all touchy feely over Lara Croft’s body even though Lara is a strong woman. Then it’s all just a big issue if men call out the injustice there. Devs can do what they will, it’s all at their own risk, like with Hatred the game. The problem is that instead of attacking the idea, they start attacking the medium. That’s how it’s always been. Then they start trying to force censoring of ideas, hence why the Japanese censor their games for western release, and I don’t believe that that is fair for gamers or for devs. We have a godforsaken rating system to deal with this. Let the ideas float freely, let gamers decide if they wanna deal with violence in black communities or with violence between Mario and Luigi so long as those who don’t like the premises of a game attack the ideas of the game instead of gaming in general. That’s also why everyone who talks about a social issue in gaming gets called an SJW, because they start attacking the medium, or gaming, instead of the ideas and that makes them an oversensitive pickle. No one attacks movies in general after the Xmen issue discussed above, why should gaming be attacked instead of specific games? Even then I think that criticizing social structures of fantasy worlds when they’re just meant to be fantasy through any medium is retarded because they’re all just fantasy. It’s like the premise that FPS’ teach you to kill, it’s moronic! In the end, and forgive my lengthy point, this all shows that the gaming industry is still growing. It took almost a century for the cinematic industry to get where it’s at right now, where it is respected as art, used to spread ideals, etc. We need to allow gaming to grow by giving it room to breathe instead of being smothered by insane premises and even crazier groups of people. And we definitely need to give it better and impartial journalism.

      • Lu

        October 17, 2016 at 12:53

        EG Mass Effect, Dragon Age and Fallout 4. Great diverse casts.

        Reply

      • BakedBagel

        October 17, 2016 at 12:54

        While im waiting for a half decent game other than doom. Maybe game devs should tackle making a half-decent game that actually works on release.
        2 years ago people (everywhere, including this website) were worried about how boobs are rendered in a game. Gamers didnt care, they just wanted a game, devs didnt care they wanted to “make” a game. There was only 1 party that actually made a fuss.

        Yall.
        Diversity IS happening, We just had a game purely made in the eyes of the Italian mafia, sporting a black main character.

        PS: Just 2 months ago we had Dues Ex drama. Tackling real world issues. And people still made a fuss..

        Reply

        • Geoffrey Tim

          October 17, 2016 at 12:57

          I love that Deus ex tried to tackle real world issues – but in the end, the way they did it was *terrible*. I was all for the game using loaded terms, but the the whole “Mechanical Apartheid” never felt like more than a mild inconvenience. It was window dressing, and in effect may as well have not been there. They had the opportunity to really hit a pertinent social issue home – and completely whiffed it.

          THAT SAID, I still realy dig the game.

          Reply

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 13:00

            I love DE. They always have been before the curb with certain issues, more so than most games.

            I honestly believe they used the term “Mechanical Apartheid” purely for shock value, making the clicks happen, which is not the correct way to go about it. Obviously.

          • Geoffrey Tim

            October 17, 2016 at 13:02

            Yeah, and the “Augs lives matter” thing didnt hep either – it felt like poor approriation of a real issue. HAd the game genuinely tackled the issues it touched on properly, wuldnt have been an issue. But as said, it was all just perfunctory.

            I’m still going to play it again when I have time, and kill *everyone* though.

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 13:12

            Silent or COD Geoff thats the question you need to ask yourself when you play it again 😛

          • Geoffrey Tim

            October 17, 2016 at 13:13

            I’m still busy on my no kills ghost playthrough. Next time, I’m going in guns blaaaaaaaaaazing.

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:18

            I always laugh at that cause someone corrects someone elses spelling in those same comments and gets called a grammer nazi. 😛

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 14:13

            Well that a whole personal bugbear in itself, self appointed, unsolicited grammar correctors, filling who’s mandate exactly?

            Want to highlight your own self-importance? Sure, selectively correct my grammar on social media… whatever strokes your ego the most…

            Hate those guys….

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:14

            so many …

            please fix it. ffs.

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 14:17

            Whenever I post something like this, some twat will correct something in the post…. because twatness…..

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:18

            Want to highlight your own self-importance? Sure, selectively correct my grammar on social media.
            Whatever strokes your ego the most.

            Hate those guys.

            FIXED BRUH

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 14:17

            I meant the people who had issues with the term apartheid happily call you a nazi. A hypocritical I think.

        • Alessandro Barbosa

          October 17, 2016 at 13:01

          If you think making games more diverse is a burden on game developers rather than freeing now that it’s something that’s being appreciated and widely recognized, you’re a little confused. I don’t think there’s a studio out there wishing they could be less diverse with their games.

          Reply

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 13:09

            ???
            I would imagine a studio would like to be critiqued on the game and not how boobs are rendered or who the main character is. Or how many female main characters are showing some ass.

            Edit: Recently, certain games have been given lower scores because Journo’s inject their personal politics into the game, because they dont like what they see <– that should never EVER happen. To my knowledge this hasn't happened on LG. And i applaud you all for it.

          • Alessandro Barbosa

            October 17, 2016 at 13:11

            Why should a game be exempt from certain types of critique? Doesn’t mean that all games should be the same, but for that critic it’s something that he/she feels should be pointed out. In the same way that others will choose to ignore it. And developers know what they making and why they want to make it. Critique in that regard helps them refine their goals, not overhaul them because of what one person says.

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            October 17, 2016 at 13:21

            That was something that bugged me in MGSV with Quiet. She’s an awesome character & I quite liked her character design – but every time you get into a story cut scene with her the camera spends a crap load of time focusing on and panning over her ass and jelly-jiggle boobs.

          • Dutch Matrix

            October 17, 2016 at 13:37

            Maybe it was Kojima telling gamers to lighten the *bleep* up! 😛

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:06

            I havent jammed MGSV yet. Ive been told to do it and stop being retarded. I do remember panning over lewd pictures etc being a theme in MGS, i understand what you saying God Emperor Trev, but the jelly-jiggle boobs shouldnt be the reason for it to be scored better or worse. Make a note about it, but you shouldnt take anything away from the game just because of boobies 🙂

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 14:15

            As a game developer (I assume eventually), would you solo develop a game where the main protagonist is not of your own race/gender/sexuality?

        • Umar

          October 17, 2016 at 13:15

          “Diversity IS happening”
          Yes, yes it is, but it can grow, and there is a lot of room to do even better. We can’t just go oh Mafia has a black protagonist and be done with it. It’ll be an ongoing discussion and a continuous process. It shouldn’t be about one side bashing the other, and I understand how the left and right argues. You shouldn’t be made to feel guilty for wanting a game just for the sake of a fun game nor should someone be labelled a SJW for wanting more diversity. I think the important thing of this article is just to start throwing the term SJW politics out of the window so that we can find that middle ground 🙂

          Reply

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 13:24

            It is growing 😛
            I couldnt care who the main character is, aslong as the writing is good, and the story engaging.

            There was once a time where people used that term in pride. What happened?

          • Umar

            October 17, 2016 at 13:30

            SJW? I don’t know to be honest. It’s kind of an insult these days. The term should just be abolished.

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:31

            An insult you say…..

            ….
            ….

            Dear Anita … you are a true SJW and a meecrob!

          • 40 Insane Frogs

            October 17, 2016 at 13:51

            Nah! Anita is just a scam artist, who has been incredibly lucky that her eloquence hides her sophistry.

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:55

            I hate that woman so much not because she is a woman but because of all the bile she spews and bile that was not even researched properly.

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:08

            Heh- and you can see which websites pushed her shiat 😛

          • Jimmy Page

            October 18, 2016 at 03:44

            More like incredibly good at using advertising techniques to subtly try and persuade people to her way of thinking. I’d love to see someone doing an advertising course just break down the stuff she did to show all the tricks. It’s like textbook examples I’d imagine.

          • Arhire Adrian

            October 18, 2016 at 14:45

            Abolished? No way. Free speech is more important than hurt feelings.

      • Farnsworth

        October 17, 2016 at 22:09

        Content producers are free to make whatever creations they desire. Most of them are wide left of center too and thus write narratives accordingly. Forcing them to drown their creations in intersectional feminists horseshit and then lying about it is what started Gamergate and I for one am eternally grateful for it.

        Reply

  3. Raptor Rants

    October 17, 2016 at 12:30

    “People want to go back to the “golden days” where games were just about games. But isn’t that just so boring? Are we not curious to see how far this passion, and love of ours, can go? Social issues belong in gaming and it’s a staggeringly beautiful medium with which to tackle them.”

    Yes and no. Yes, social issues have a place in gaming. But it’s gotten to a point where almost (If not every) game is meticulously run through for not being inclusive enough or for daring to stereotype ANYTHING.

    Gaming is a powerful medium and it can be a powerful force for driving the diversity that people are so striving for. But to do so to the exclusion of mediums that just want to be a hobby game is ridiculous and stupid.

    I do not want a gaming industry made solely of games focused at being the perfect social balance all the time. I won’t fit in anymore which is exactly what everyone is trying to stop with these societal issues. Everyone wants everyone included. But by demanding that all games have diversity and societal issues at its core to make it *paraphrase* “Not Boring” then you are making it boring for those who just want light-hearted (Or heck even serious games) that have nothing grounded in reality at all. I really do want some games that are so excluded from the real world that I can escape. Some days I just don’t want to remember the crap of the world. So please don’t force the entire gaming industry to be that kind of industry.

    Everything has a time and place. There is a space for creating games that focus on being the perfect inclusive type of game people want. But there is also space for games that ignore all of it to make a unique experience not changed or altered to make sure people feel “Included” because guess what, there are people who feel excluded by being forced to be included in the medium. If that makes sense to you?

    Reply

    • Glenn Kisela

      October 17, 2016 at 12:39

      “For many, gaming is an escape from the real world and I completely understand that. Having struggled with depression in the past, gaming was the constant that allowed me to take a break from reality and immerse myself in another world. There are certainly games that have that role of fantasy and fun. This isn’t an argument that games should all be serious and thought provoking.”

      That’s what I wrote in the article, so agreed with your point. Not every game has to be about social issues, some can be just plain fun. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

      So we’re on the same page in that regard. 🙂

      Reply

      • Raptor Rants

        October 17, 2016 at 12:45

        I misread that part the first time I read “This is an argument that games should….” instead of “isn’t”
        Lol

        Reply

      • Raptor Rants

        October 17, 2016 at 12:54

        So my misread aside, I do agree there is space for both sides of the fence. The sad thing is too many games that have nothing to do with societal issues get blasted for not being diverse or inclusive enough. So while you do agree that there is space, the sad truth is a lot of people are trying to force this view on almost every game that has space to allow it, even if it’s not the intention of the game or really needed.

        Reply

  4. Original Heretic

    October 17, 2016 at 12:38

    The term SJW is horrible, not only in gaming, but in any context.

    Reply

    • TetraD20

      October 18, 2016 at 02:09

      That’s because it describes terrible people.

      Reply

      • Mr_SP

        October 18, 2016 at 09:07

        Yes, but it shouldn’t be used as an accusation. Skipping interpretation of someone’s argument, and jumping straight to “this is SJW bullshit” completely ignores why SJW stuff is bullshit. Now, not everyone possesses the time or intellectual ability to pick apart those sorts of arguments, but that’s what the upvote button is for.

        Reply

        • TetraD20

          October 18, 2016 at 11:07

          Here’s an example of “SJW bullshit.”
          “Hi guys!, we’re going to have a meeting on diversity point being to increase the diversity on our campus, the first order of business is kicking out all the white people.”
          This is SJW bullshit, I can see why, you can see why, and if someone else CANT see why. It’s probably because they’re an SJW. And I don’t feel like explaining it to them.
          MOSTLY because they don’t care, they cant be convinced in a single conversation, because they don’t REALLY care about the issue, because if its not ABOUT hurting people, it’s because its like a religion to them.
          And because in a few years when they get a job and live in the real world, 95+% OF THEM NATURALLY GROW OUT OF IT.
          I’ve been talking/arguing with these people for over 2 years, and they make me tired. So excuse me from time to time not being able to put the effort forth and just instead say “This is SJW bullshit” and go back to doing something useful.

          Reply

          • Mr_SP

            October 18, 2016 at 11:12

            Yes, it is. I’d also consider it an extreme case. Most of the time, in video games, it’s not this blatantly obvious.

  5. Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

    October 17, 2016 at 12:40

    I always wondered, why gaming? Movies and other entertainment were left pretty much alone when this all started up.

    Reply

    • Archdruid Kromas

      October 17, 2016 at 12:43

      Uhm … really … recent (very) example the Great Wall teaser trailer.

      Reply

      • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

        October 17, 2016 at 12:57

        Not seen that yet

        Reply

      • BakedBagel

        October 17, 2016 at 13:02

        Bruh just watched the trailer. Holy shizzzz that looks good.

        Reply

        • Archdruid Kromas

          October 17, 2016 at 13:06

          Yeah the teaser only showed Matt Damon on the great wall so everyone called it white washing cause they all thought he was acting as a chinese man.

          This is happening all too often lately.

          Reply

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 13:53

            Rami Malek and the Gods of Egypt.
            LUL

            Rami is egyptian i think lol

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:57

            Yeah … Gods of Egypt was a bit …. I could sorta see it there but then again it was a meh movie.

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:02

            you mean *trash movie 😛

          • 40 Insane Frogs

            October 17, 2016 at 14:09

            It’s OK Kromas, you can say it. It was a shit movie.

    • BakedBagel

      October 17, 2016 at 12:46

      Nothing is easier than telling a gamer what he loves is wrong.

      Its been done time and time again.
      Low hanging fruit.

      Reply

      • Alessandro Barbosa

        October 17, 2016 at 12:47

        An inaccurate and very basic view of this article and many other similar ones that critique the medium to help engage with it and make it better.

        Reply

        • Dutch Matrix

          October 17, 2016 at 13:40

          But better for who exactly? The guy that wants social issues tackled or the guy that appreciates swaying boobs as his character runs into battle?

          Reply

          • Alessandro Barbosa

            October 17, 2016 at 14:04

            Pretty sure there are games for both. No one is killing one in favour of the other

          • hurin

            October 18, 2016 at 03:30

            Then why do devs and Gamers alike get accused of sexism every time a new DOAX comes out?

            http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/events/dead-or-alive-xtreme-3-localization-controversy

            The reason I am against ‘moving forward’ and ‘inclusiveness’ is that they are just censorship dressed up in pretty words.

          • wafle7350 .

            October 18, 2016 at 09:16

            When i can play eroge/lewd games translated into english, then and only then you could say tell me “No one is killing one in favor of the other” as it is, just small amounts of cultural differences get butchered out of games to protect western sensibilities.

          • Mr_SP

            October 18, 2016 at 09:25

            …But you can. Not on Steam, though they do stock some non-eroge versions, and not on PlayStation, but there are multiple places you can find eroge. They’re not super profitable, and there’s not heaps of them, but there is both demand, and supply.

          • Glenn Kisela

            October 17, 2016 at 19:06

            Just like Alessandro said before, there are games for each. The point of this article is that people shouldn’t attack those that want more of the former.

          • BakedBagel

            October 18, 2016 at 14:23

            And people wanting the former should never attack those wanting the latter, which has been done. Multiple times.

            On this very website. Authors “attacked” gamers for WANTING to play DOAE3.

            So please. Save the bs.

    • Lu

      October 17, 2016 at 12:48

      Well compare movies from 10 years back vs movies now. I’m all for diversity, but cramming as much political correctness as possible is ruining media for me. It’s like everyone’s following a formula.

      Reply

      • Brian

        October 17, 2016 at 12:56

        Examples where “cramming as much political correctness as possible” has ruined ruining media for you?

        Reply

        • Lu

          October 17, 2016 at 13:07

          How to say it without making myself seem the bigot. I have no problem with homosexuality, interracial couples etc. BUT its becoming a trend now to have at least one of each in every show, movie and game. I’m pretty sure WW1 german soldiers weren’t black and yet they are in Cattlefield One. The removal of the Batgirl Cover due to feminists whining about it.

          Reply

          • Alessandro Barbosa

            October 17, 2016 at 13:09

            “First organized in 1916 as the 15th New York National Guard Infantry Regiment and manned by black enlisted soldiers with both black and white officers, the U.S. Army’s 369th Infantry Regiment, popularly known as the “Harlem Hellfighters,” was the best known African American unit of World War I.”

            Took me about 0.3 seconds to disprove that Battlefield 1 example 🙂

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 13:21

            “WW1 GERMAN soldiers”
            The only Afro-German(the name of Black German’s before ww2) soldiers, according to my reading, were in German controlled Colonies. Who cares tbh, its a character for a class.

          • Lu

            October 17, 2016 at 13:25

            Yeah that I know. BUT. The representment is somewhat skewed, and ‘what bugs me. Eg. Khoi-San and African commandos fought alongside the Boers in the Anglo Boer war. So if I was to make a movie/game about it, how much sense would it make to have a Khoi-San dude with his bow and arrow representing a war between Boers and the English?

          • Glenn Kisela

            October 17, 2016 at 19:11

            And yet we have Matt Damon representing a battle in the Great Wall of China. Hollywood doesn’t give a shit about factual accuracy.

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 13:48

            GERMAN SOLDIERS…

        • Sageville

          October 17, 2016 at 13:50

          Rebooting all male characters as women… didn’t ruin the media, just felt forced and wrong….

          That Thor thing, Ironman… etc.

          Reply

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:54

            I am fine with rebooting as all those character have their own back stories and have the originals appearing in them at least once or twice sorta like how Miles Morals became spiderman after Peter Parker died. However turning a white character (not the mask but the man behind it) black just because is wrong. Talking about human torch here btw.

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 13:59

            I don’t think we talk about THAT movie….

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 14:01

            Oh yeah it was terrible even ignoring the fact I stated. Then again if you thought the movie was going to be good then you seriously need to see a Disney Marvel movie and compare them. 😛

            With the exception of deadpool (that movie was awesome).

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 14:23

            Truth!

            If I’m honest I was more angry at Mr Fantastic’s “Suit with springs” costume….

          • Glenn Kisela

            October 17, 2016 at 19:12

            I’ll agree with you there. Personally I’m not a fan of just rebooting characters. I think it’s a lazy out. Rather write in new characters with more diversity into existing universes.

            In the long run, that would be so much more beneficial.

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 20:09

            Preach!

      • Glenn Kisela

        October 17, 2016 at 19:10

        No one is cramming PC vibes. Even the term PC has so many negative connotations to it that detract from the discussion, much like “SJW” & “feminazi”.

        There is still a long way to go when it comes to diversity in films, amongst other issues. So yes, people are going to cause a stir when Scarlett Johansson is cast in Ghost in the Shell & it’s completely warranted.

        It’s not about creating some formula to tick diversity criteria. It’s about acknowledging the issues & fixing them organically. No one is saying that every cast should have X amount of people of colour. It’s about raising questions of why white people are so dominant in castings & tackling the issues that lead to that outcome being the norm.

        Reply

        • Lu

          October 18, 2016 at 07:19

          This white dominance thing is BS. In North America, the majority of the population is white, thus more white actors to black actors. In South Africa, this is flipped, because the majority is inverted. Simple statistics.

          Right guy for the job in my opinion. I’m a purist, and I like when stuff stays as close to the source as possible. Black James Bond? Considering the diversity in England hell yes, you could even have an arab Bond at this point. How stupid would it be if they had anyone other than a black man as Luke Cage?

          Stay with the source material and stop casting people just to further your political causes is what I say.

          Reply

    • Alien Emperor Trevor

      October 17, 2016 at 12:58

      Because it’s a very young, rapidly growing, highly profitable market.

      Reply

      • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

        October 17, 2016 at 13:08

        That made so much sense it game me a headache

        Reply

        • Elilla Shadowheart

          October 18, 2016 at 10:12

          It doesn’t really make sense at all. Video games are around 40 years old, the golden age of TV is just a little over 15 years old. Video games themselves have already been through two bust cycles. On average with “social issues” they’re 20-30 years a head of their time.

          Pretending that they “need to include something” because you don’t seen it, simply says you’d rather shoehorn for the sake of shoehorning instead of letting writers make their games as they see fit, while letting them sink or swim on their ability to capture the audience.

          Reply

          • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

            October 18, 2016 at 10:57

            The popularity is what cliches it along with social media being used by almost everyone

      • Sageville

        October 17, 2016 at 13:49

        “I’m so young now!”

        Reply

    • Sageville

      October 17, 2016 at 13:46

      Exactly, who here listens to music…

      Ever actually listened and considered the lyrics…

      Somehow gaming is a bigger target and more rants about this medium, go figure…

      Reply

      • Archdruid Kromas

        October 17, 2016 at 13:48

        Movies however have been targeted a lot lately with Oscar boycotts and hate thrown at Matt Damon (I mean he rocks who can hate him? Cept maybe Jimmy Kimmel).

        Reply

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        October 17, 2016 at 13:49

        Because games are your kids’ babysitters. 😉

        Reply

        • Sageville

          October 17, 2016 at 13:54

          I thought that was the TV?

          Reply

    • Zoe Hawkins

      October 17, 2016 at 14:26

      movies are coming under similar scrutiny, not so much with content but more about who they choose to play key roles (also known as white washing). There is a movement towards more diversity, better handling of social issues, etc, but it’s a slow process in all media.

      Reply

      • Sageville

        October 17, 2016 at 14:36

        Hollywood seems very entrenched for some reason, even when society is probably more accommodating than ever before.,..

        Reply

        • Zoe Hawkins

          October 17, 2016 at 14:39

          i think they already consider themselves liberal for making movies about gay or black characters, haven’t really seen the need to grow any further or adapt to new norms. it’s part of why i think Netflix might be the future – willing to take so many more risks and create such interesting characters.

          Reply

          • Sageville

            October 17, 2016 at 15:00

            LUKE CAGE!

      • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

        October 17, 2016 at 14:44

        It’ll take much slower in movies I think. It’s easier to make an indie studio to listen to SJW complaints rather than Universal Studios.

        Reply

    • miaau

      October 17, 2016 at 14:46

      Remember the old “choose your own adventure” books? I think that is why gaming, it is interactive, the play can, sometimes in very limited ways, influence events. A movie just takes you along for the ride.

      Reply

  6. Alien Emperor Trevor

    October 17, 2016 at 12:55

    I’m perfectly happy to have societal issues in games, many of my favourite games have incorporated those into their stories. As long as I can identify with or understand the character I’m playing then I’m perfectly happy.

    I’ve never understood the people who a) who whine endlessly about it being forced on them and b) who whine endlessly about a game not matching a perfect diversity checklist and then c) whine endlessly to and about each other.

    There’s no shortage of games to play – we’re so spoiled for choice the hardest decision is choosing what to play next, and there are so many games catering for every taste. So game XYZ isn’t for you because it doesn’t cater to what you find good or fun? So what. Play something else that does.

    (And this has been addressed perfectly in a game – if anyone’s completed the Gwent quest in W3 B&W you know what I mean.)

    Reply

    • RinceThis

      October 17, 2016 at 13:05

      You are NEVER happy!

      Reply

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        October 17, 2016 at 13:28

        I was once, at 4pm on 5 October 2013.

        Reply

        • BakedBagel

          October 17, 2016 at 13:28

          Did you frame the date and time? i bet you added a ” 🙂 “

          Reply

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            October 17, 2016 at 13:29

            No, but I did google that specific date. 😀

          • Admiral Chief

            October 17, 2016 at 13:55

            Lagz ION article?

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            October 17, 2016 at 14:00

            Nope.

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:09

            something to do with rAge?

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            October 17, 2016 at 14:12

            It was about an hour before the start of the final game of the 2013 Tri-Nations between ZA & NZ. Which was just before I met Rince. 😀

          • BakedBagel

            October 17, 2016 at 14:13

            REAL SPORTS??????

            EWWWWWWWW

          • Admiral Chief

            October 17, 2016 at 14:21

            That is really funny, so you have been poisoned for 3 years?

          • HvR

            October 17, 2016 at 18:31

            ^^^^^^^ COMMENT OF THE WEEK ^^^^^^^^^^^^

            LOL

  7. Archdruid Kromas

    October 17, 2016 at 13:08

    One of my all time faveroute games tackled a bunch of social issues in a high scifi game. It had topics from racism all the way down to what constitutes sentience with everything from black markets to moral stances on genocide.

    They tried to ban it for overly graphic sexual content …. that they heard about …. from a friend …. of a friend … of a friend.

    Reply

    • Lu

      October 17, 2016 at 13:29

      You talking about Mass Erect?

      Reply

      • Archdruid Kromas

        October 17, 2016 at 13:30

        You damn right I am. 🙂

        Reply

        • BakedBagel

          October 17, 2016 at 13:31

          They tried to ban it?????

          Reply

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:32

            Yep.

          • Lu

            October 17, 2016 at 13:33

            Because of a little alien bum and a half boob.

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:34

            That they did not actually see. they took the matter to court with the only evidence being they heard it from a friend of a friend whose kid told them about it.

          • Lu

            October 17, 2016 at 13:35

            Sigh. Wasn’t the game rated 18?

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:36

            Not sure since by that time I was already well past anything the ESRB could stop me with.

          • Lu

            October 17, 2016 at 13:40

            Hahaha same here. But yeah a kid that plays mass effect would miss the plot and stories completely, summarizing it as Pew Pew Sexytime in space.

        • Alien Emperor Trevor

          October 17, 2016 at 13:32

          I thought you were talking about Mass Efucked.

          Reply

          • Archdruid Kromas

            October 17, 2016 at 13:33

            Well I am definately not talking about Star Whores Episode 69. 😛

          • Lu

            October 17, 2016 at 13:34

            Yes the ending sucked, but it doesn’t nullify the awesome time I had playing the games. I thing I’ve had 6 start to end playthroughs.

  8. Guild

    October 17, 2016 at 13:26

    Great article and a good read.

    Reply

  9. 40 Insane Frogs

    October 17, 2016 at 13:49

    SJW politics is a cancer.. There’s a huge difference between the regressive opinions and views of the CTRL-Left and those of individuals who actually believe in freedom of speech, expression and artistic freedom.

    My two cents: No to blatant tokenism, and yes to actual diversity in narratives.

    Reply

  10. Sageville

    October 17, 2016 at 14:01

    This topic will always be a comment fest…. we see you Glenn Kisela!

    Reply

    • 40 Insane Frogs

      October 17, 2016 at 14:08

      He wants to be Batman of the week!

      Reply

      • Admiral Chief

        October 17, 2016 at 14:22

        Batman of the week is for traffic, not most comments

        Reply

        • Sageville

          October 17, 2016 at 14:24

          DECOLONIZE THE BATMAN FORMULA!

          *Never thought those words could be used together.,,,,

          Reply

          • Admiral Chief

            October 17, 2016 at 15:16

            Lol, crazy man!

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        October 17, 2016 at 14:45

        Did you just assume a Batgender?

        Reply

  11. 40 Insane Frogs

    October 17, 2016 at 14:04

    Honestly though, what we have here is a discussion on semantics. Whether we use the term “social justice” or “SJW” is irrelevant. What is ultimately important is how gaming is being impacted by it, whether or not it’s beneficial to gaming or its consumer-base or whether gaming needs to becoming a pulpit for a specific type of ideology. What I find annoying is the assertion that gaming must “grow up” and embrace “social justice”, because it will somehow “change the world”. This is grossly naive. It’s nonsense.

    Gaming could be an invaluable tool to educate or to inform, but it should not become a tool of propaganda. Social justice is the ideology de jour among the neckbeard armchair philosophers and scholars today, but as history has shown us, societies and their cultural views swing like a pendulum. Make gaming a propaganda tool now, and it will never recover!

    Reply

    • Sageville

      October 17, 2016 at 14:33

      You may be correct.

      I do think the term “SJW” is so tainted now, that whole confusing #Gamergate thing resulted in fatigue and angst, nobody wants to see it tossed around and embedded in the gaming medium.

      Maybe it’s a point to rather use the term “Social Issues” which could relax a number of clenched ani of the many triggered gamers, sufficiently enough to enable the introduction of more games that challenge perceptions of normality.

      Reply

      • Bret Hart

        October 18, 2016 at 05:51

        “You may be correct.”

        You mean IS correct. Claiming video games will change the world IS naive.

        “I do think the term “SJW” is so tainted now, that whole confusing #Gamergate thing resulted in fatigue and angst, nobody wants to see it tossed around and embedded in the gaming medium.”

        You’re right, Gamer’s don’t want SJW’s around in gaming or gaming medium.

        “Maybe it’s a point to rather use the term “Social Issues” which could relax a number of clenched ani of the many triggered gamers”

        How about not using the term “Social Issues.” and just stopping with Social Justice in gaming all together?

        “sufficiently enough to enable the introduction of more games that challenge perceptions of normality.”

        Perceptions of normality? What the fuck are you talking about? This is about VIDEO GAMES, Jesus Christ, trying to make a mountain out of ant hill when at the end of the day it’s about people playing with toys.

        Reply

        • Mr_SP

          October 18, 2016 at 09:20

          Perceptions of normality could be referring to places we’ve never been, and experiences we’ve never had. For example, what’s it like to live in South Africa, or Egypt, or a distant planet. Things that are ultimately distinct from our regular lives.

          But the actual term doesn’t really seem to mean anything. Most games are already very much distinct from anything in reality.

          And Social Issues and Social Justice are not the same thing. One usually leads to the other, but they aren’t interchangeable. Social issues are issues that have occurred in a society, and social justice is the ideology of manipulating laws and society to benefit specific groups.

          Reply

        • Sageville

          October 18, 2016 at 09:26

          You seem to have all the simple layman’s shit all sorted, meanwhile some of us do look deeper.

          It’s ok if you don’t understand the big words…

          Reply

          • Bret Hart

            October 18, 2016 at 11:36

            “You seem to have all the simple layman’s shit all sorted, meanwhile some of us do look deeper.”

            “Mum! Seriously! It’s not me wasting my time playing with a toy! Its deeper than you think! Just you wait! Every university and game company will be kicking down their door to hire me!”

            “It’s ok if you don’t understand the big words…”

            Oh I understand the big words. Its just you’re using them incorrectly and you think using them makes you sound deep and intellectual. When it really doesn’t because in the end you’re talking about toys. Which the majority of people look at as a time waster.

            “Perceptions of normality could be referring to places we’ve never been, and experiences we’ve never had. For example, what’s it like to live in South Africa, or Egypt, or a distant planet. Things that are ultimately distinct from our regular lives.”

            Fiction has existed well before video games did. Its not “Perceptions of normality!” it’s called fictional writing. That’s what you call it.

            “But the actual term doesn’t really seem to mean anything. Most games are already very much distinct from anything in reality.”

            Yeah that’s how fiction works. It’s not real, so stop treating it likes it real.

            “And Social Issues and Social Justice are not the same thing”

            But…

            ” One usually leads to the other,”

            So aren’t they the exact same thing then? Both lead to each other as you admit.

            “Social issues are issues that have occurred in a society”

            Yes.

            ” and social justice is the ideology of manipulating laws and society to benefit specific groups.”

            No it’s not. Social Justice is very clear used to bully, intimidate and silence others while hiding a thin veil of higher morality. Which is why most people today use the words “SJW” in a negative tone or phrasing because people are just sick of social justice behaviour. In the time social justice has being around has anything productive come from it? Because all I see is it causes divide and hatred within community’s because someone has to find something to be offended about and is never satisfied even after achieving what they wanted over other customers.

            Like their always professionally offended…

          • Sageville

            October 18, 2016 at 12:32

            You said some things, some of those things were silly and I can clearly see that you didn’t grasp the concept I was discussing. I don’t see any value trying to educate you about it, as you don’t strike me as the listening type, just the telling type….

            Enjoy your day!

          • hurin

            October 18, 2016 at 14:59

            Bahahahahaha!! Sargon’s law in action.

            Let me just quote yourself.

            ‘Wow, You seem massively full of yourself.’

  12. hurin

    October 17, 2016 at 18:58

    ‘I’ve never really understood why people are so resistant to the concept of social issues in gaming.’

    Because computer games are fundamentally about escapism.

    I’ve never really understood why journos are so resistant to the concept that games are about being fun, and that they should be about art instead. Because being about art is a bad thing, art is about shitting into a can. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/736954a60a26f5ec7f5235b0cb248331b8d0e396c99151e7f7e564336dcbcc87.jpg

    Reply

    • Glenn Kisela

      October 17, 2016 at 19:17

      “Because computer games are fundamentally about escapism.”

      Says who? You can go back to games as simple as “The Magic School Bus” to disprove that statement.

      Reply

      • Bret Hart

        October 18, 2016 at 05:44

        “Games can mean differen things to different people, be it art, escapism, marketing, education, simple fun or even a message.”

        At the end of the day, its made for profit entertainment. That’s it. Video games do not serve a purpose in you existing. You can live without video games. Video games are not essential.

        “It’s binary thinking to envisage games as escapism only, that may be true for you, but many people get different things out of their games.”

        So? Doesn’t change what they are.

        “Who are we to tell them otherwise….”

        Well since gaming is a sub culture, the ones who were here first to build the subculture (me) have a rightful say to tell them otherwise. Games are not political activism, 60fps > 30fps, GTFO.

        Reply

        • Sageville

          October 18, 2016 at 12:26

          ” the ones who were here first to build the subculture (me) have a rightful say to tell them otherwise. ”

          Wow, You seem massively full of yourself.

          Let’s be frank, you didn’t built shit and you don’t have any right to speak on behalf of gaming / gamers.

          So glad we cleared that up.

          Reply

      • BakedBagel

        October 18, 2016 at 14:25

        Says the people that made gaming as popular as it has become?

        Reply

      • hurin

        October 18, 2016 at 14:56

        I do, and TMSB:O is a bad example because it is not targeted at the people who play it. It is bought by parents who give it to their kids..

        Reply

    • Sageville

      October 17, 2016 at 20:08

      Games can mean differen things to different people, be it art, escapism, marketing, education, simple fun or even a message.

      It’s binary thinking to envisage games as escapism only, that may be true for you, but many people get different things out of their games.

      Who are we to tell them otherwise….

      Reply

      • hurin

        October 18, 2016 at 14:52

        The flagellants got joy out of beating themself, today those kinds of people get joy out of playing interactive experiences like Gone Home.

        I am going to tell them otherwise, because I am right and they are wrong.

        Reply

        • Sageville

          October 18, 2016 at 15:21

          Bwhahahaaa, tsek wena!

          Reply

  13. Farnsworth

    October 17, 2016 at 22:06

    You’re about 4 years late to the party dude and that battle was luckily lost cause a lot of people said leave our hobby alone thus inpuning any future by which you or any other dingbats are going to force content producers into fulfilling whatever draconian agenda you might want to ratchet into their creations. This article is dishonest and irresponsible.

    Reply

  14. Lith Maethor

    October 17, 2016 at 23:34

    It’s not the term that is the problem, it’s the politics themselves. What most SJWs don’t want to understand is that people push back because of how they go about things (also, because their basic assumptions are fundamentally flawed). When you sacrifice internal consistency, solid characterization, or even usurp established aspects of the setting to push diversity, people should mock you for it without mercy or remorse.

    Reply

  15. Molton Crucks

    October 18, 2016 at 01:40

    I can’t help but feel that this article somewhat deceptively blurs the line between “games” and “writing”.

    Games have always been about gameplay. They thrive on interactive design, whether it’s for competitive purposes or to convey an emotion to the player that requires a sense of control (or the sudden absence thereof. Nobody forgets the climax of Bastion, where you are suddenly at the complete mercy of your attackers).

    Although modern games have a much stronger narrative focus than their predecessors, the writing you encounter in them isn’t particularly stellar. This especially applies to their discussion of social issues: the things we hail as “progressive” in games are often viewed as overplayed cliches or even harmful stereotypes in the world of literature (see: tragic lesbians). The games that get slapped with this label of “SJW pandering” are often these ones that rely on sub-par writing to deliver their message, whereas games that integrate their social messages into the actual gameplay get near-universal praise (see: Papers Please).

    While I’m no fan of labels, I can’t shake this feeling that these people are making “progressive” games purely because they don’t have what it takes to make progressive literature. In fields with a higher writing bar, there’s no niche for rich kids trying to repent their privilege via the facade of social awareness. Yet over here in gaming, they get slathered with praise by journalists who see their work as “gaming growing up”.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that social progress is bad. Rather, I’m saying that most of these self-declared progressive GAMES are bad, as are the articles discussing them. If I want to see someone intelligently discuss social issues, I could click over to any number of activists or philosophers who know their stuff ten times better. If you’re not going to deliver that same level of quality, then I expect you to discuss things you DO know: gameplay, graphics, and performance.

    In short: people either need to grow up as activists and learn to discuss social issues like the best of them, or grow up as game designers and learn to better wield game mechanics and technology. If they simultaneously do a sub-par job at both, I’m not gonna praise them as some paragon of social progress who is making gaming a better place. I’m just gonna go play Overwatch and listen to a speech by Yousafzai.

    Reply

  16. TetraD20

    October 18, 2016 at 02:06

    “Critics who treat ‘adult’ as a term of approval, instead of as a merely descriptive term, cannot be adult themselves. To be concerned about being grown up, to admire the grown up because it is grown up, to blush at the suspicion of being childish; these things are the marks of childhood and adolescence. And in childhood and adolescence they are, in moderation, healthy symptoms. Young things ought to want to grow. But to carry on into middle life or even into early manhood this concern about being adult is a mark of really arrested development. When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.” – C.S. Lewis

    Reply

  17. TheCellGames

    October 18, 2016 at 02:10

    Gaming can tackle social issues. I don’t give a damn, that depends on what the devs want to do, it’s their problem, not the whole gaming industries’. However when things like what you wrote try to get in the way of what people enjoy (like the infamously decent game, Hatred. Or the Dead or Alive series, as well as Beyonetta and even Mario Bros. (some dips**** would go as far as calling Peach a product of sexism)) then you’re asking for the community to get pissed.

    Reply

  18. Jimmy Page

    October 18, 2016 at 03:42

    Here’s the counter point.
    You know what terms have also lost their meaning seemingly:
    Racism
    Sexism
    Bigotry
    Misogyny

    They’re not useful to discussion anymore because rather than have a nuanced discussion about how the representation of something seems a bit off they’re often used in place of an argument at all and merely used to present an absolute position. One which if question merely results in the person questioning it being labelled.

    The big issue in gaming is the presentation of “Oh look games are tackling these mature social issues” often tends to only be applied to one type of game The Walking simulator. If gaming is truly growing up why are the games presented as “grown up” the most simple?

    The twist is gaming isn’t growing up, it’s been grown up for a while from the complex philosophical ideas of “I have no mouth, and I must Scream” to the commentary upon terrorism found in “Infamous Second Son”

    The reality seems more to be that it’s not gaming having a problem it’s many of those writing about it not being able to pick out tones themes and symbolic things unless they’re being metaphorically beaten over the head with it.

    “With great power comes great responsibility”

    but

    “Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself
    do not become a monster… for when you gaze long into the abyss. The
    abyss gazes also into you.”

    Gaming owes it to itself as a medium to not become merely a political hockey puck or nothing more than a nuance less medium for political propaganda.

    >> Look at the fury that Destiny faced initially when it lacked any real
    narrative. We all want depth in our games. Tackling social issues gives
    us that very thing we all crave.

    How is wanting to know where the giant sphere or the moon wizzard came from or being a resurrected person who find themselves in a different time in any way social issues

    >>Socially conscious games can create socially conscious gamers who have
    an enlightened view of the world and a better grasp of it.

    Only if you force everyone to play said socially conscious games or destroy any other escapism allowed in the marketplace. It’s not the job of gamers to save the world. Gamers are not some untapped mass to be mobilised to try and create utopia. Why should it be? Because you think it is? Because gamers exist? Is it the job of football fans to change the world? Or any other hobby?

    Reply

  19. Nathicrol

    October 18, 2016 at 05:18

    If gaming is going to “grow up”, then gaming journalism needs to “grow up”, too. In this case, I mean the constant search for hate clicks and to be as incendiary as possible. When a game not trying to speak on social issues is judged through the lens of social issues, that is the result of an immature reviewer. If you review a hamburger negatively by complaining that it isn’t a salad, or review a jazz album negatively by complaining that it isn’t punk, you’re not only missing the point, you’re revealing your own bias and immature stance in relating to what’s being presented to you.

    That’s one thing Roger Ebert always did when he reviewed movies fist and foremost – try and judge it for what it’s trying to be, not what you want it to be. When you use the same, shallow, one-sided political lens to “critically evaluate” EVERYTHING, you aren’t actually critically evaluating anything any more, you’re just applying the same boiler-plate political complaint over and over. It ceases to be review or critique, and becomes propaganda. Even when it’s well-meaning, it becomes obvious when certain outlets or journalists do it constantly.

    Want to review a game like DX:HR on it’s social issues and how they are tackled? Great, that’s a game obviously trying to do that. Want to rant about Australian politics in an article about a racing game that’s about as apolitical as you can get? You’re a sad political hack.

    If gaming is going to “grow up”, then the age of click bait and political tribalism needs to end for it to happen. “SJW politics” and the complaints surrounding it aren’t going anywhere until the majority of the people espousing them cease to be intellectually bankrupt corporate stooges farming hate clicks. If you want your criticism taken seriously you not only need to take it seriously yourself, you need to be willing to take criticism of your analysis into account as well, which many of the “SJW” types are loath to do.

    Reply

  20. Bret Hart

    October 18, 2016 at 05:33

    “This is about social issues in gaming. This is about changing the world.”

    YOU’RE PLAYING A VIDEO GAME. ITS ENTERTAINMENT. NOT ACTIVISM.

    That’s all that needs to be said. You keep thinking video games are a form of activism, when they’re not. Most people on the planet don’t play video games. Stop huffing you’re farts and come back to reality.

    Reply

  21. wafle7350 .

    October 18, 2016 at 09:19

    The funny part is that IRL i usually stand for social progressive ideas
    in a country controlled by the religious right from the moment of our
    independence, but i hate SJW in gaming so much… and until i can play
    what ever game i please with out having its content butchered by
    “localization” or never getting officially translated due to fears of
    controversy, and until content creators don’t get bullied by dogmatic people to change certain aspects of their games, until then i will probably continue having a deep dislike
    of social justice politics in gaming, and i don’t care if sometimes me or others like me, exaggerate a little, not until we have defeated
    your bullying censorious tactis, like when gamers defeated the religious right in the past.

    Also getting really tired of hearing how liking big butts or boobs in my
    games make me into a bad guy, often times criticism of such things
    comes with ask for censorship, or the criticism is really a “call to
    action” in disguise, as often creates so much controversy that content
    creators are force to apologize, modify their work, or be forever
    blacklisted.
    The worst ones comes at the expense of the games
    themselves calling us bad people for enjoying certain content, or
    disliking certain politics.

    Sorry not sorry about hating sjw in
    gaming anymore, i use to… especially because i can see their points
    sometimes… but they are dangerous for gaming.

    Reply

  22. Deceased

    October 18, 2016 at 12:02

    I believe this is the first article I’ve read by Glenn Kisela.
    I actually read through the whole thing – it’s lengthy, but gripping.

    Let’s start with, as a gamer, I don’t necessarily want to go back to the “golden days” so much as I’d want to stop the notion of “Gaming is a right and EVERYONE MUST experience it equally”. I seriously loathe that sentiment as gaming NOT a right and my personal opinion is that everyone experiences it differently.

    That loads my argument with a minimum of 2 points: Gaming is NOT a right and HOW people experience games can’t be the same.

    Firstly, in very much the same way as any other media-form out there, gaming is a LUXURY. It’s not something that we, as godawful human beings NEED to survive… Thus, forcing opinions and ideas on Devs on what they MUST put in their games is soooo horribly askew, I believe that is the bulk of “resistance” perceived. ( I’m thinking specifically when EA aligned themselves with Anita Sarkeesian – most gamers I know were outraged by this )

    Which brings me to my second point – Why is it, that Devs give you the tools/means to skin a cat multiple ways? ( I obviously don’t mean literally )
    Down here in the comments, Deus Ex : MD came up – you can play it as a ghost or slaughter everyone.
    I don’t have confirmation YET of this, but I believe it is because the Devs want you to play in a fashion that you’d WANT to experience the game.
    Another example would be the upcoming Dishonored 2. There you have the option to play as Emily OR Corvo.
    Ah-ha -> this is what I wanted to get to… see what they did there – they give you the option to play as a female OR as a male. I know I’m going to play as both because I’ll play the game multiple times, but the point is, across the sexes, there’s already diversity.
    So then what about race? I’m guessing this is another form of inclusion? Well – why do sooo many people forget about The Walking Dead by Telltale? That is a great game – so we’re not ONLY talking about the stereotypical games like GTA: San Andreas.

    Maybe I’m just being utterly, utterly ignorant and use these as a way to justify my ignorance – but you know what… I don’t jump into some hobby that’s predominantly attractive to other … how to word this … “persons”? ( another demographic ) … and try to modify/change it because I somehow feel excluded.

    Again, I’m not saying that we’re trying to “go back to the golden days” where a gamer was seen as a basement dweller at his ( let’s face it – back then gaming was by far predominantly a male thing ) parents’ house… but if someone comes crying with “Oh but I feel left out, even though I want to join in on your hobby” – I generally get annoyed, because: THE WORLD DOESN’T OWE YOU JACK SHIT! if you want something, you go and do it yourself…

    Step 1: learn to write software
    Step 2: create a subgenre in gaming with the game that you just wrote
    Step 3: if it’s a profitable subgenre, companies are sure to adopt it
    Step 4: steal underpants
    Step 5: …
    Step 6: profit.

    Reply

  23. Mr.Misogydick

    October 18, 2016 at 12:46

    No.
    Games have been grown up for a while now.
    Every single time I read an article like this, it’s always these arguments:
    1) Social issues can be done in games.
    A: Yes, but that is not what we object to. Also, not all games need to be about social issues. Games can be just fun and that’s fine.

    2) Nobody is taking your games away.
    A: No, they are. They want to. Which leads me to:

    3) It’s just common sense that reviews discuss other things than just gameplay.
    A: Yes, to some extent. What we constantly see, over and over, is idiots trying to shoehorn ideology and bullshit into games that are not about social issues, or trying to push their political views onto the readers via critiques of games that might not share these views (and labelling them as “bad”, because they might promote those views)
    A2: Nobody likes to be preached to. There have been clear calls for certain games or game genres to be prevented from being sold, or made in the future.
    Why? Because they’re “problematic”. While saying that, said critics can’t produce a shred of evidence games cause any kind of problems, or actually formulate which problems specifically they’re supposed to be causing.
    Critics even blatantly LIE about games and their content, to push this agenda.

    4) Games should grow up and aspire to become art/ more inclusive
    A: Games already are both those things.

    5) Games are slowly making progress, finally, magically after all these years and only now we’re seeing female protagonists and whatever buzzword we can come up with.
    A: No. Again, this is lying and pure obfuscation. Games have always had these features, but it’s useful to portray older games as an exclusive boys club and a den of misogyny, even if it’s far from reality. Why? Because we can pretend there’s dire need for our bitching and “activism”.
    A2: No two critics can often agree on what constitutes progress and what exactly games should avoid or include. This way you absolutely cannot do anything right, because there will always be someone to point out things in your game that aren’t up to social justice standards, somehow.

    Final note: Do you want artsy games? Do you want inclusive games? Do you want progressive games?
    Fucking make them. Or support those who make them. Stop harping on those who do not.

    Reply

  24. Notanalien44

    October 18, 2016 at 14:06

    I can bet that the author is a liberal. He can’t even see that his opinion is just a way of justifying spreading his sjw propaganda through a popular medium. I bet you’re opinion would change if the message being sent was conservative. No need to make every game a reflection of the current American elections.

    Reply

  25. reaVer

    October 18, 2016 at 14:26

    To disprove a statement you will first have test the hypothesis of it being true and then see if those results match reality.

    If you start off with the wrong definition, you can write 2 pages, you can write 2000 pages, but people are only going to respond to the first 10 lines.

    You start off with:
    “When it comes to gaming, SJW Politics is used to describe content that discusses gender, race and mostly anything that isn’t purely gameplay.”

    And this is incorrect. SJW politics is a much grander spectrum that includes gameplay changes to games for the sake of social justice. And social justice originates from Marxism, therefore a social justice warrior is practicing Marxist values.

    And the biggest mistake Carl Marx made was assuming that every human is the same as the next and should get equal results for his/her efforts. He, as many others, found out that this just isn’t true: it demotivates those that work hard and angers those that consider themselves entitled.

    Social justice in gaming is found in groups demanding equal representation even though there is no valid reason for them to be equally represented. What it in essence aim to do is making the pope the star character of a GTA game. It injects things into the game that do not belong inside the game or only serve as a distraction to the game. Sometimes to make these ideas work, gameplay has to be altered (the Pope doesn’t move fast enough; as per example) and the overall fun/quality of the game suffers.

    Gamers haven’t taken issue with the fact that some characters are massive fags, some women are pretending to be saints or some women are right out sluts. Especially when the game has made it work for itself rather than against itself. What they take issue with is that games are sacrificing gameplay to enforce a political message; an attempt to brainwash the player. Players simply don’t want this and game developers usually don’t want to instruct their players on what to think. Just like the metal world, gamers tend to keep to themselves and tend to have their own opinions.

    You really think Anita Sarkeesian got it bad? (We’ll skip over the fact that most harassment was sent to her by her own associates…) The average gamers know this pattern all to well: They say something somewhere and at least 5 others are triggered and respond in the most offensive manner possible. Gaming has never been a safe space in that regard, it has been a hornets nest that people have mingled into on their own free will. Anita Sarkeesian just stuck her hand into the nest, got stung and cried about it like a little bitch. Because while gamers sling shit at eachother over things they agree with, they slung even more filt at her for being factually wrong, extremely wrong at that.

    Gamers do not like feminists because feminists seek to damage their fun time. To add to that, feminists tried to patronize our female players, summarizing their opinions as “internalized misogyny”, they have demonized the average male player and they have attempted to destroy our industry, our hobby. This is why they have a special place on our hate list. And as it turns out, gaming wasn’t enough, they’ve also tried to attack metalheads and are now attacking manga and anime; where its female creators are begging them to stfu.

    Your item was posted on KotakuInAction reddit so a lot of triggered gamers are here, myself included. But at least try to notice that most of them try not to tell you what you must think, but instead try to make sure that you are factually correct. You can have any opinion you want, the only demand is that your arguments are solid.

    Reply

  26. Churchill4President

    October 19, 2016 at 00:07

    At first glance, by virtue of a deceptive article title, I thought you believed that the importation of social justice i.e. a progressive political agenda does not belong in video games. However by the end of the article it seems clear you believe that video games need to evolve and embrace all of the values that social justice warriors want. You just don’t like the term.

    Video games were fine before the invasion of a handful of social activists and corrupt journalists fresh out of college decided that video games and gamers themselves needed to change.

    Video games should not be a medium for the indoctrination of ideology or propaganda. It seems the almost every hobby and interest has been invaded by unwanted and unwelcome social justice warriors who sole aim is to change the content of video games to suit themselves and not the target audience of rank and file gamers. These SJWs are drunk on the opium of virtue signalling. And the author of this article has done quite a bit of that himself within the article with his platitudes about how gamers can change the world etc.

    People just want to play video games to escape the drudgery and monotony of the real world. Video games are a sacred oasis of escapism for millions of gamers. Stop trying to use video games to “change the world” and to spread *your* particular political views. Change the world on your own time. Be the change you want to see in others. If you want to feel good about yourself, go volunteer and help people. Don’t try to hijack an entertainment medium and art form like video games.

    Reply

  27. Ryan Dean

    October 19, 2016 at 01:18

    Rather than making games waste time filling quotas n bowing to agendas why not sod off and make your own game that has all those things.

    Reply

  28. Lawrence Newman

    August 30, 2017 at 15:04

    This is SJW as fuck.

    Reply

    • LuzariusLive

      September 4, 2017 at 07:50

      Agreed. All this article admits is that left wing wants to use games to promote the garbage they learn in their sociology classes.

      Reply

  29. LuzariusLive

    September 4, 2017 at 07:22

    It’s when you change existing content to be politically correct that people get upset. If you make a brand new IP with progressive concepts that’s fine, but if you change an existing IP like Lara Croft and de-sexualize her outfit because someone was offended over sexualization, that is SJW bullcrap. No one likes that. Left swing SJWs need to make their own content, not append their SJW garbage onto existing IPs that never had their progressive concepts to begin with. It’s about genuine content that comes from the heart & soul, not an artificial, lifeless, soulless diversity checklist of tokenism. People can easily sniff out tokenism.

    I’m middle eastern, but I would not expect to see middle easterns in a game called “Ancient Celtic Life”. I’m not going to be upset if my race isn’t included in a movie or game. Race doesn’t matter to me. I’m not insecure. I don’t ever want anyone to feel they need to force middle easterns into their game or they might be called racist against middle easterns.

    Take Denzel Washington for example. IMO, he’s not casted because he’s black, he’s casted because he’s extremely good at what he does. When I see him on the big screen, I don’t see a “black person”, I simply see a man whom I want to be as strong as, race doesn’t matter. His acting is so powerful it breaks the barrier of race. It’s genuine, not token.

    In Mass Effect Andromeda they went against Asari lore to claim that Asari prefer different pronouns, but that completely violated the lore from previous Mass Effect games. I ended up getting a refund for the game.

    Don’t ever let SJW progressive ideas violate a games pre-existing lore & backstory or else you’ll get backlash. People will rebel against your SJW ideas if you ruin their favorite game because of it. Don’t do it. Make a new game, make a new IP and let your progressive ideas earn respect by standing their own ground without riding off the backs of other IPs.

    Reply

  30. Faustina Aprile

    September 9, 2017 at 02:05

    I needed to take a shower after reading this moronic tripe.

    Reply

  31. Icarus

    October 8, 2017 at 14:37

    gaming is and forever will be a medium to escape the bullshit the world has to offer. Including the bullshit that social justice is. Countries like India or in Africa are ones that actually need help and gaming isn’t going to do that.
    If you’re set on change, how about travelling to those countries and doing charity work?
    but NOPE! you and every other trash sjw want others to do shit you want while you sit on your fat asses feeling all smug about yourselves when in reality you are at the bottom of the shittiest people on earth. and that totem pole includes killers, rapists etc.
    At least they’re honest 90 percent of the time about themselves.

    Reply

  32. Alberto Rivera

    June 30, 2018 at 01:13

    Found this article late, had to log in and comment…I absolutely loved this article, for one it beautifully showcased the Legendary Love, Respect and Thoughtfulness of those who hold Tolerance near and dear to their hearts. In layman’s terms, if you disagree with them, then the conversation if over. Those are the tolerant SJW’s we’ve come to know and love.❤ ♡ ♥ ღ ❣ ❥ ❦ ❧ ლ. OMG…Hugs all around for discussing Social Issues with an open mind, I certainly feel warm and fuzzy, how about you!?

    “Leave “SJW Politics” and similar terms at the door. This is about social issues in gaming.”

    “He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future.” – Adolf Hitler

    Reply

  33. Adrian

    September 4, 2018 at 08:37

    Do you want gaming to be a one giant, preachy sensitivity training session? In full compliance with feminist dogma (no fit or sexy women allowed, only fat ones and fully covered up), a propaganda vessel for far-left ideologies?

    You’re either haven’t been playing attention or you’re an SJW yourself.

    Reply

  34. BG

    July 19, 2019 at 09:38

    “In the last article I wrote, where I discussed the white boys club that is so often the norm in gaming”

    “I’ve already spoken at length about the perception of gaming being a white boys’ club”

    Hey Glenn, why do you have to use the derogatory term, “white boy,” when referring to white men? Would you accept being referred to as “boy”?

    Reply

    • darren McManus

      December 13, 2019 at 08:57

      Nah man, its cool to be racist and demeaning…..as long as its towards straight white men! Not hypocritical at all.

      Reply

  35. darren McManus

    December 13, 2019 at 08:37

    Sorry…..pretending that women were serving as Infantryman in WW2, Is not progressive. It is feminist rewriting history. BFV and their sjw liberals would have today’s youth believing women were 50℅ of the FIGHTING force in WWII. There were ZERO American female Infantry. ZERO Japanese female Infantry. Only the Russians had an EXTREMELY small band if female snipers, and women forced to fight when Germany invaded the motherland. Ghostbusters gets an all female remake. Doom guy gets a female lead in a movie. Captain Marvel becomes a women. No IP is safe, no franchise is safe. Yesterdays women were actually fighting for something real. Today’s feminists seem to be trying to convince themselves, and us, that they are men. In doing so, they undermine their own sex and their own arguments.

    Reply

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