Yes a rather strange title because I wanted to try and have some kind of original and slightly out there title for this as yes its another one about the Bros before Hos trophy
Now I do think Adam Sessler got it wrong slightly here. To pull the “Its sexist” card is unfortunately becoming an easy out card. Its unfortunately off the mark and doesn't address what I believe was meant to address, the true issue with the “Bros before hoes achievement”, the problem is mainly one of tone. The tone of God of War I’ve always equated as close to that of the Saw film Franchise a somewhat series if slightly out there tone with plenty of blood. While you could argue that the achievement trivialises this death in particular or at least that was the perception a far better argument would be it breaks the tone the game was until trying to portray.
Allow me to put forward this to highlight my point.
That’s a clip from the James Bond Film Goldeye for those not familiar with it. Now before someone goes off and points out misogynistic elements of James Bond the point here is about the tone. James Bond films are known far more for their slightly lighter tone, this is stylised violence, fantasy violence, unrealistic violence this shows the disconnect. What it also shows is a Bond quip as such after some’s death. God of war is known far more for its brutal and at times overly brutal tone, it’s the story of someone who loses his wife and daughter and blaming the gods goes on a rampage to kill all the gods he believes are responsible. It’s not such a light hearted tone so to have a quip like this showing up creates a disconnect in the tone, if Kratos has turned and gone “Bros before Hos”the disconnect would still be the same. What should have been said is the sudden tone jump seemingly trying to appeal to the “frat” crowd is a little bit of a shameless but with the game introducing multiplayer and the “frat” crowd being seen as the big audience of the COD series then its more understandable why they’d try this.
Now to address the argument that’s being raised against this and this is taken from an actual youtube comment “ I think if you were to ask your Mother, Sister, Daughter, girlfriend or wife what they thought about playing a game where you stomp a woman's face then get a trophy for it, they'd be more than likely offended. Do you honestly think you could show them the scene, then tell them you defended the content and not feel a little embarrassed, or even guilty ?” Here’s the problem with it, I’ve been playing games and stomping the faces of Male villains in for a while and often getting achievements for just that. Even doing it as a female main character sometimes. The Villain losing is a main trope in itself what’s being claimed is because it’s a male main character doing it then its sexist.
So was that sexist ?
What you’ve just seen for those too young to remember or unfamiliar with it is the ending of Banjo Kazooie. I wasn’t seeing people yelling about sexism from the roof tops when shows like Xena depicted a strong female lead often beating the crap out of male goons even accompanied often by an incompetent male Sidekick / comic relief of sorts in the form of Joxer the mighty. Equal rights which is being carried here as a rallying banner against this, should mean this is actually something to welcome, not the tone but the fact a Female Villain is being treated no different to a Male Villain, she’s not being allowed to vanish off.
That’s even without bringing up the point she’s not some innocent. Part of the outrage with the Modern warfare 2 No Russia level was the butchering of innocent people. The whole idea of the iconic Hero pretty much is to defend those who can’t defend themselves and in this case it’s pretty clear that a legendary Furie who are meant to possess near god like power is far from some innocent helpless civilian in this. When a character takes on the mantle of villain in a series they take on what comes with it too including the fairly standard trope that the Villain loses and often meets a sticky end of sorts. To claim female villains needs special dispensation for being female is a highly sexist ideology in itself. A villain should be a villain regardless of gender and if Kratos had turned round and gone “Oh no it’s fine you only tired to kill me about 5 times, I’m completely fine with you going free” it would be just as stupid and tone breaking as the trophy being discussed here. Kratos has torn plenty of other gods and villains apart and yet he suddenly shows compassion here ? That would be a sexist pandering attitude to take, the same kind of attitude demanding all games studios have 50% female staff by hiring women deliberately due to their gender not their qualifications (Though this is more of a matter for another blog another time in the future I’m sure).
So in conclusion, honestly it seems to me more like Sessler simply failed to express quite what he meant to say and unfortunately due to picking one of the most volatile possible phrases to utter at present. Its causes a huge amount of fuss with Arseholes and white knights running riot about it, people attacking Sessler people defending his stance claiming God of War is high proof of sexism because shock horror a Villain was treated like any other Villain in the series.
Should this be less a question of Bros before Hoes and more a question of Trophies respecting the games own Prose ?