Selective Sexism

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Culture, Politics

First off, I want to get this out of the way: Epic Games has really lost touch with their gamer base. They tasted the forbidden fruit of easily-swayed 12 year olds with Gears of War and have pretty much abandoned their past market — A mature and discerning gamer who demands a superior quality product.

Nevertheless, I came across this article on Kotaku which I thought was really silly. The main point of the article is unremarkable, it’s talking about Epic’s decision to go with EA (probably not a bad thing given what a debacle Midway has been with UT3) and their new projects in production.

The fun part is when the Kotaku interviewer chides Mike Capps for Epic’s “lack of female characters”:

As a parting shot, I asked about chicks in this new game. I hinted (flat-out said) every Epic game I’ve seen is severely devoid of badass females (except Unreal Tournament) and wanted to know if he planned to do anything about it. Apparently, I’m not the only one with this concern. Capps’s girlfriend is also very interested in the badassitute of female characters in Epic games – ditto for the EA handler’s girlfriend and double it for all the guys at People Can Fly with girlfriends.

Really, so “every Epic game” he’s seen is severely devoid of badass females?

Lets look at their past titles: Epic Pinball. Jazz Jackrabbit. Unreal (main character was by default, female). Unreal 2. Unreal Tournament. Unreal Tournament 2003. Unreal Tournament 2004. Unreal Tournament 3. Unreal Championship. Unreal Championship 2. Gears of War.

Pinball and Jazz are not exactly relevant here. And the only Unreal title that doesn’t feature “badass females” (badass of course, meaning “sexy female character who turns boys on by being into guns and killing stuff in the same way that adolescent boys are”) is Unreal 2. Even there, we can’t really know what Aida is like because she never sees combat in the game. She’s touted as a military genius, though, and her strategy won a past war — she just doesn’t like killing.

So basically, this Kotaku guy puts on his feminist waders and goes to chide Epic. “Of your past 9 futuristic paramilitary shooter games, one of them has not featured a ‘badass female.’ When are we going to see more games from you guys that feature ‘badass females.'”

How utterly stupid. Not that it’s anything special, it is pretty typical.

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