Hello there! I'm Jed Whitaker, Editor-in-chief of Tomodom, a "game journalism" website with a diverse cast consisting of many females, LGBTQ, straight white males and everything in between. Our goal is to show that all types of people can be serious gamers and game journalists.
We are also working on a Kickstarter called DIG, or Diversity and Inclusivity in Gaming. More details about that to come in the future!
Alternate title: Am I the only one around here that is tired of playing as a 30 something white cisgender male with a gun?
I have played video games for as long as I can remember, which is over 20 years, and for all of those years a majority of the games have starred middle aged white cisgender males with some form of gun. Retro consoles are just as "guilty" of this as modern consoles, from Mario Bros. (compare the original Mario sprite to modern day Mario) to Megaman to Uncharted and Grand Theft Auto. There is nothing inherently wrong with making a game starring a white male character holding a gun, just isn't there SOMETHING else?
Obviously there are games out there that feature different types of characters as leads, Princess Tomato in Salad Kingdom, Metroid, Mirror's Edge, Heavenly Sword and Okami for example, just not nearly enough. During the recent expos and cons I sat on my couch watching live streams of the big reveals and trailers and I couldn't help but be disappointed time and time again when I found out the cool looking game starred a straight white cisgender male.
Imagine my excitement when I saw the announcements of Muraski Baby and Lily Bergamo, two new games that feature leading ladies. I felt sad after watching the live reveal of Lily Bergamo because I was excited by the fact that the main character and game title were assumed to be female. No gameplay was really shown, no real story elements explained, just an enemy, a main character and a title. And here I was, excited by the fact I could play as a female or anything outside the "norm".
Heck, I even got excited when the trailer for Call of Duty: Ghosts confirmed female soldiers were finally in the game. If given the chance in multiplayer games to play as a female character, I do, having played as a female spartan in every Halo game that offers it, Evelynn in League of Legends, Peach in Super Mario Bros. 2, etc. It is not that I want to be a women, but I crave variety and something different. I have played so many games as a man, it just feels good to play as ANYTHING different. I posted an article about Natural Selection 2 adding a female soldier on my site and the response was very positive. Someone also pointed out it is sad that the fact you could play as a female was such a big deal in this day and age. I have to say I agree.
Now don't get me wrong, I enjoy many games with a white cisgender male lead, and I don't feel like you should shoehorn in different types of characters just to please the masses. That being said, isn't there a ton of possibilities when you think of all the types of people in the world publishers and game designers aren't using? Women, children, elders, LGBTQ people, handicapped people, and people of others races all could make interesting characters with interesting stories. There are even tons of openings in current series to include female characters, Super Mario Brothers for example, Who are the Mario parents? Bowser Jr.'s mom? Just think of the possibilities.
So how will this ever change? Currently I'm planning a video series called Diversity and Inclusivity in Gaming or DIG for short, which is going to be short (hopefully) animated examples of hypothetical games featuring a variety of characters in a variety of different game genres. I've been working with my team from Tomodom along with people gathered from various places to conceptualize said video series. Our team consists of many females, LGBTQ people and even a few cisgender white males (gasp! though they are a minority). Right now we have 5 concepts started for episodes that we are working on developing, and without giving away too much detail I'll say one stars a transgender mayor.
Some teaser artwork done by Alicia Weninger (check out her artwork here) for one of our hypothetical game concepts. Just imagine them on horses. (Yes I'm being cryptic on purpose.) And the following is a rough sketch of another heroine from a different concept we have in the works, also drawn by Alicia, presented without comment.
Currently DIG, while having been being worked on for a few months, is still in its infancy. We have a lot of work to do before we launch, and we would like to run a Kickstarter for it, as animation isn't cheap. Thus far everyone working on it is doing so as a passion project, unpaid and on their own time, because we all agree this is something that needs to happen and needs to be talked about. We are always looking for talented people to help if anyone is interested (and no I didn't make this post to recruit people) so if that is you let me know.
So what do you think Destructoid? "Can you DIG it!?" Do you think this is something that needs to happen and/or is a good concept? You are the first people I've mentioned the project to outside of close friends and colleagues. I'll be revealing more as work continues in anticipation of launching the Kickstarter.
The Hawken closed beta has started and I've decided to make a little introduction video showing you some different features of the game, a full deathmatch and a few different mechs. I did have a few audio issues, but either way you can get a feel for the gameplay and the available mechs. I was also in the alpha but that is still under NDA. I can say that there are major differences between the two, but can't go into further detail.
Hawken will be available in 45 days, and right now I feel like it is still trying to figure out balancing. Mechs feel very fragile, and battles tend to not last very long, something that I think needs to change. Certain mechs feel more powerful than others, like the more tanky mechs and the fast darting around assault mechs. The sniper feels kind of out of place in the game, sniping a mech just feels weird. That being said I'm never really played too many other mech games other than the original Steal Battalion (FUCK YEAH!) and Mech Assault 2 for like once, so maybe snipers aren't that strange for a mech series?
Hopefully things can get a bit more balanced and less buggy in 45 days, the game is a SHIT LOAD of fun, regardless of the small caveats the game faces at the moment. If anyone has the beta, add me: DimmuJed and let's rub metal together :)
Jim Sterling seems to think that oranges are better than apples and that is just not true. This is probably going to be the shortest rant review on this site, but apples are far better than oranges.
Look at the facts, oranges were great, the first time, but now they are just a boring citrus that we have all had before. We all know citrus is acidic and too much of the same thing is bad for you. But these apples, man are they good. Plus, how many kinds of oranges are there? Like 3? They all taste the same, but there is so much variety in apples from granny smiths to red delicious to curb stompers to grapples. Plus look at the ingredients of most fruit juices, they run on the apple juice engine, the most renowned engine on the market! Apples and the juice they run on is so fucking awesome, way better than oranges and their teeth decaying bullshit and peals.
Go fuck yourself, Jim "Nintendogsexual Banana Loving Sonic Rapist" Sterling apples are so much better!
Sorry about the short amount of time between posts, but I'm sick of people crying about scores like this and comparing games to each other that have nothing in common. It seems like the internet is full of idiots these days and I'm ashamed at the way gamers are reacting to reviews now...disgusted even.
I've been playing Skyrim for a couple of days now and decided to get some eye candy for you guys to swoon over. On my first setting I thought the graphics looked like ball sack, turns out I must have been under the influence of being a hateful bitch that date. The graphics are gorgeous and the gameplay isn't too shabby either. I have these available in 1080p if anyone wants links to download them. Without further a due, I present to you, Skyrim on Xbox 360.
Background / Cover / Description
Skyrim Title Screen
Foggy Forest Wagon Ride as Prisoner
Beautiful Sky, Mountains and Forest
Flowing River Under A Bridge (my favorite, check out the detail on the water / the butterfly in the background)
Check Out That Breast (SFW)
Hunter's Fire Lit Cabin with various animal pelts and his wench
Snowie Mountain Top Valley View with mace and lightning
Walk Like An Egyptian...?
Foggy Mountain Peak Towering Above Woodlands
My mage in town peering at foggy mountain in 3rd person (sad that you can't see how sexy her mohawk is)
Kirby has been spotted wearing a dress, feathers and turning into a ball of flame, but now in this latest scandal, Kirby has been caught KISSING OTHER MEN! It has always been known that Kirby has an oral fixation / fetish, swallowing any and everything in sight, but now whenever he is seen eating, shortly thereafter he can be spotted kissing men. Most recently he has been spotted on the town sucking face with King Dedede, Meta Knight, doppelganger Kirbys and Waddle Dee.
We contacted Kirby's celebrity friend, Chris Brown, for comment, but upon sitting down for an interview he threw a chair through a window, screaming "Look At Me Nah!" and then ran out the door yelling something about what I assume was a headphone endorsement deal, all that could be made out was "Beats by Chris Brown."
Kirby has always held a special place in my heart, having been the star in one of my favorite original Game Boy games, I mean what's not to love? The game is short, to the point, has very catchy music that is still around in some fashion in Kirby games till this day and always a great speed run to relieve some stress. I feel the game has aged very well for an original Game Boy game.
So of course I purchased Return to Dreamland on day 1. That same night I had a date with a cute boy I had met through "online dating" I guess you would call it, but really it's a GPS based dating app for smart phones. He only lived a couple miles away and is a gamer, but admittedly had only really ever played Tekken and Call of Duty (zombies mode of course) as those were the only games friends and family had played that he found interesting. We hung out at my house and started to watch the movie Trespass "starring" Nicolas Cage and Nichole Kidman doing their finest work of all time... that being said we got distracted and shut off the movie like half way through. I finally had the nerve to ask if he wanted to play Kirby with me. I told him it was a really important game to me and I wouldn't play it with just anyone and stressed my seriousness about it (seriously), we had hung out a few times so it wasn't like I was being weirder than normal.
Moments later, we strapped up and booted up the game as I got really excited during the intro like the little girl that I am, he leaned over on my shoulder (dawwwwwww). We started the first level, I was player one as normal pink Kirby and he was player two as yellow doppelganger Kirby (little known fact, Shigeru Miyamoto originally argued Kirby should be Yellow). We played through a bit figuring out the controls (more like he was figuring them out, Kirby controls haven't changed...ever, because they just work and HAL realize if it isn't broke, don't fix it) and then moved onto a real non-tutorial level. In said "real" level we took some damage, cause you know...it's a Kirby game, you don't die in one hit.
Then it happened... I ran onto a tomato, devouring it instantly, then his yellow Kirby ran into me and WE KISSED! I was like "OH EM GEE" and he was like "What?" and I said "Our Kirbys just kissed!" at which point we kissed <3 Le Sigh! Then we continued to play and kiss when our character's did, it was TEH CUTE!
After a while we started discussing the repercussions of the kissing taking place on screen, as all the characters appear, in a sense, to be male. King Dedede obviously is presented as a male, with the title of King, Meta Knight just looks / sounds / acts manly and Kirby is generally a male name. Waddle Dee on the other hand...who knows, but I don't see boobs. But seriously, is this going to be offensive to some people? I mean...if you consider the characters male, then it's a bunch of men kissing OR regurgitating food between the two like a momma bird and a baby bird. I only find one scenario gross, but who am I to judge, some people just hate chewing.
In reality, are any of these characters actually a specific gender? I don't see any genitals on Kirby or Waddle Dee, nor any other characters in the game. I'm not sure if Kirby has ever been called a he in any of the games, officially, but a quick Google search shows that most people refer to him as a he, as well as Nintendo referring to him as a "little boy" in the Super Star manual.
Why do we find the need to give gender to characters? Can't we just accept Kirby as a sexless being? I understand giving male or female characteristics, at least in the case of King Dedede, though I yearn for a Drag Queen Dedede, how awesome would that be? I mean, technically Nintendo has always been a trend setter when it comes to the lesbian, gay, bi and transgender community, with Birdo, Tingle, Link, those flamboyant guys in the tree from Twilight Princess and lets not forget cross dressing in Animal Crossing.
We figured that most people would over look the fact that all the characters appear to be male and kissing but sooner or later someone will blow it out of proportion. We were all for it, as every time they kissed, we kissed. I <3 Kirby xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo le sigh....
Picture Removed. Felt a bit too personal after the fact and we kind of lost touch :/
[Editors note: I just did a quick edit to add some facts and clean some things up. Sorry for posting a "rough" draft at first, though I'm sure like 1 of you had read this.]
I've started to frequent Reddit recently and have found two threads that I feel need to be discussed here, as I respect a lot of you and would love to hear your opinions on this subject.
EA, in recent years, have started to get the reputation as a company that doesn't care about it's employees, it's customers or fair competition, but are any of these statements true? Can one of the largest video game publishers, if not the largest, really be doing things so underhanded that the only appropriate term for them is evil? The following is evidence supporting this claim...take it for what you will...