So today former Destructoid writer posted this over at Gearbox's website.
Inclusivity, as we all know the current hot button issue on gaming sites of all things is how game devs don't pander to everybody, this is all well and good, I mean my own personal views is that equality is something that just doesn't and will never exist, but I digress, I mostly take offense to the way he words certain things which I will cover here.
Let's start with good ol Ellie.
"Ellie specifically bucks against the stereotypes that all female video game characters must conform to mass-market definitions of beauty" says Mr. Burch.
Why exactly does it need to mean this, I mean ignoring the fact that if a woman such as Ellie existed she wouldn't be able to walk, and let's ignore the fact that her entire character is one big joke on southern folk, why exactly is someone not liking her need to be taken as some sort of attack on fat people, look at the cosplayer I posted, realistic proportions, looks like a character that could exist within the world.
She's a fine character but I don't understand why this needs to be the core of her design, why can't she simply exist and the entire design concept of her was he says, something to buck the trend of what passes as an acceptable female character, why the hick jokes then? She even mentions herself she separated from the family. You can't tell me she's progressive in one sentence when she's mocking another group of people.
So next he mentions how Torgue is apparently bi-sexual, I am as well, I don't identify with the man but still that's neat, but then he mentions Axton is also, but not intended, apparently it had to do with character specific dialogue when reviving someone, they never implemented any sort of code to tell the difference between Maya, Gaige or the other characters, because of some positive buzz, he intentionally made him Bi in the Tiny Tina DLC.
All well and good, but to me that just hurts the overall message, you made him bi-sexual because of Gearbox being lazy, you didn't plan it, that hurts the inclusivity as far I'm concerned. And again, these kinds of things should not be at the core of these characters, fat, gay, trans, crippled, who cares, just be you.
Following this he touches on Karina, an NPC who you meet who stutters and a letter he received regarding a soldier who also stutters, see that's cool, he wrote the character like that even if for some reason she loses her stutter after you finish her missions, that's the kind of shit I'm talking about, you didn't plan it but there it is, someone who stutters in real life loved your character and more importantly, its not what defines her.
I just take issue with one tiny thing he mentions in the same breath.
"In fact, the only mockery Karima receives are gendered insults from a misogynist named Dave, who ends the quest by dying violently (because, like the bandits Ellie crushes to death, I take great pleasure in making bigots and sexists pay for their douchery)."
So in other words, if you disagree with my viewpoints, you deserve to die, that's real progressive Anthony, advocating murder, thumbs up my friend.
The end of the article touches on the fake geek girl crap which is a can of worms I don't wanna open.
For those of you who haven't read it, Scarlet Spider is a pretty great comic. It's fun, well-written and it has great characters. Two of those are a gay cop and his chubster boyfriend. They don't exist there to be inclusive. They're not pandering or obnoxious. They're just THERE. They are simply two supporting characters who contribute to the plot like all the rest.
This is how it should be done. It should NOT be done with the express purpose of making people feel "included". In fact, if characters are written in for this purpose, it only serves to further distance those minorities away from the general public because you're taking pains to point out how they're different just for the hell of it. It doesn't do minority groups any favors.
By calling attention to who these people are, to their sexual ethnicity, the body types, you are doing the complete opposite of what you intended.
The people who read this, do you have any gay friends? Trans? Maybe in a wheelchair? Missing a limb? Do you treat them any differently than you would anyone else?
If you answer yes, you are part of the problem, if you answer no, then you know what true inclusivity is, you don't care, you just want to be their friend.
Gay, Bi, Trans folk routinely want to come out when THEY want to, they don't wanna be exposed or have their secrets blabbed for all to know, they don't want people using that as their defining character trait, they simply want to be comfortable with themselves.
You want to call attention to their plight, you can do that without sound like preachy asshole.
I know Burch starts the article saying its gonna sound self gratifying, but that doesn't make it ok, that's like me saying, I'M GONNA MURDER THE SHIT OUT OF YOU BUT I JUST TOLD YOU SO ITS OK.
The whole thing is one giant, self serving load of shit from a talentless hack who needs to use everything from the LGBT cause to toying with people's emotions to get you to give a shit about his characters, he designed them to call as much attention as possible for the sole purpose of pushing his own agenda.
There's a difference between letting a piece of entertainment subtly letting on that it has a political and/or social message posting on the internet incessantly going THIS IS WHAT MY WORK IS MEANT TO BE ABOUT AND THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO TO ARGUE AGAINST IT, FOR I THE WRITER AM CORRECT.
[font=arial] I would like to see more movies/Tv/Games use the "Alien" method of casting where you write the basic script gender neutral and give roles to the best people to show up not caring who they are, but no one's really tried that since then
Maybe I shouldn't be this surprised, this is the same person that has a framed tweet from Anita.
You wanna be inclusive so much Burch, well congrats, I dub you a woman, you are a bigger blubbering vagina than I am, turn in your balls at the door if you haven't already.
In closing I'd like to say, I don't speak of the issues facing some of the crowds mentioned here, this is purely about inclusivity and exclusivity.
And what a talentless hack Burch is.