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I'm slightly embarrassed to be a DOA fan, and it is not why you think.


I've never been much for fighting games because I frankly and honestly suck at them. I don't have the skill set or patience to really get in there and learn the minutia to even be passable, let alone good. But I have a fondness of them none-the-less. My fondness is usually born out of character designs, art style, the wacky lore surrounding the games, and the insane personalities that these games cultivate for their characters. One of the series I'm fonder of is DOA which stems from my love of the Ninja Gaiden games' characters being involved in it. I couple that with the series' frank and unapologetic sexuality for both genders. Gaming has always been tip-toeing around sexuality but DOA has always just said "BAM, in your face!" with it. If you're too juvenile, squeamish, or puritanical to deal with it, then you're in the wrong place.

So why am I embarrassed to enjoy the series now? Cause I read shit like  the DOA "community" asking to ban over 100 costumes for tournaments. The arguments for such a ban are childish and ignorant, laughable at their very concept. Banning costumes that someone has arbitrarily deemed too sexual is going to make more people gravitate towards the tourney scene and make it a more serious affair? Really? Raise you're hand if you'd be all over DOA as a series so deeply that you'd start going to tournaments if there wasn't a slim possibility someone might be using a sexy costume. No one? I thought so.

So why is this bad? Well, its bad on several fronts. First, it's new-age Puritanism rearing its head again, as is the trend when we talk about "inclusivity" these days. "Wont someone please think of the children!" they cry, as they re-adjust their bonnets and buckle hats, stitching a scarlet A in to the clothing of those who scoff this ban. The claims made are it is "The community" when, upon further inspection, its actually about half a dozen people, just those people happen to be moderators. Man, isn't it weird how its always the people who happen to be mods at a place telling everyone else what they can and can't do? It's almost like they have some sort of authority fetish. I know I sure feel included in a group when prominent members of it are saying what I enjoy about the subject of that group is wrong in some fashion. Must be that new definition of "inclusivity" I read about which is only inclusive of people who fall within the acceptable parameters. 

The second reason is how obviously childish it looks. This couples back with the puritanical undertones of this ban. DOA is, like it or not, a game for adults who can make their own decisions about what media they consume. Telling people what they can and can't play as infantilizes the player base and, to the outside world, says that this group isn't mature enough to handle what's presented. You want people to view the DOA scene as a serious thing? The last thing to do is make it look like your community is a bunch of children who can't handle the jiggle.

Thirdly, its sexist as all fuck! The costumes banned are ONLY on female characters. There's not a single male costume banned and, I assure you, DOA has no shortage of banana hammocks and other silly shit for the men to wear. Where's that equality stuff the social progressives are always blabbing on about? Oh, right, it's only sexually exploitive when its women, men simply can't be sexual objects. Yep and Buff Bagwell made the leap from wrestler to male escort cause women found his promos intellectually stimulating.

Fourth and finally, it harms the developer. DOA sells costumes by the boatload, as all KT do. Now, people are being dis-incentivized to buy those costumes because in the tourney scene, they may not/will not be permitted. Personally, I hope this backfires, and people buy the costumes to show support for the developer and the series, and not for the right to censor brigade.

Gaming as an industry is trying to grow up, but crap like this drags us backwards. The past year has set gaming back probably almost 15 years. We're right back where we were - the mainstream promoting gaming as a bunch of violent, basement dwelling, white male perverts and its because our media and our community instead of being tolerant of games and aspects of games we don't agree with, realizing they are products of an artistic outlet even if we don't like it, and finding stuff we DO like, have decided to cry for bans and boycotts and censorship and all this other crap we had gotten over. Saddest part is we could slam the brakes on this backslide, but often the majority chooses to ignore it and the gaming media is helping to perpetuate it. So why am I embarrassed to be a DOA fan now? Because now a small subset of the community that was support of one of the most frank pieces of our medium for portraying strong, sexually confident women is trying to kick the legs out from under the rest, harming the series, splitting the community at large, and harming the medium.

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About Sylveria Shinione of us since 9:10 PM on 08.15.2014

My blogs, such that they are, are mostly stream of consciousness works and have, regrettably, taken a socio-political slant, mixed with the occasional rambling rant about stupid things.