Monday, August 13, 2012

More of the Borderlands 2 Girlfriend Mode Nonsense

UPDATE:

1. It was pointed out to me last nite that this sentence could have been causing some confusion, and actually allowing some folks to think I was ok with the term 'girlfriend mode':

'It would be nice if we could correctly acknowledge that the term 'girlfriend mode' is sexist, offensive to a lot of folks, and long past ready to be put out to the 'shit we will be embarrassed to admit we ever said' pasture while also having the stones to admit there is a still valid reason the term was coined in the first place.'

I assumed the opening of the paragraph makes it clear that's not the case, but I can see this individual's point that the last sentence is poorly written. So allow me to adjust for clarity:

'It would be nice if we could correctly acknowledge that the term 'girlfriend mode' is sexist, offensive to a lot of folks, and long past ready to be put out to the 'shit we will be embarrassed to admit we ever said' pasture while also having the stones to admit there is a still valid reason the play mechanics-that gave rise to the offensive term- were created in the first place'

I stand by that. I'm sorry the first crack was poorly worded to the point that some of you felt I was in favor of the term. To be 100% clear, I am not.

2. I feel the author of the offensive and out right incorrect piece against me is in the wrong and knows he's in the wrong.

To write this, 'But then he (Jaffe) goes on to say that there’s a valid reason the term is used and that reason is, essentially, that women (or girlfriends) don’t play games.'

when I said this, ' the vast, vast, vast majority of adult women want NOTHING to do with a game like Borderlands 2 (or a game like God of War or Twisted Metal or Gears of War)'

To claim I said anything resembling 'women don't play games' is a new low when it comes to game journalist spin.

3. This original post- see below- was written in a moment of haste and anger. It was an attempt at some kind of aggressive humor but it clearly missed the mark. Instead of the playground insults coming off as intentionally smarmy and somewhat funny (my original hope), it came off as literal (i.e. I really think this guy is stupid; I'm really calling him 'dummy' as a way of insulting him and calling him names'). That's a failure on my part.  So I've changed it.

Not trying to whitewash anything. Let's be clear: I think this 'reporter' is bush league and he owes me an apology and he owes me a change in his initial article. I don't care for the guy one bit. And I have no problem saying so. But it's clear I failed at expressing that properly and so I've adjusted the entry below to reflect my intent.

Thanks

David


+++++

The guy who wrote this article should be ashamed of himself. Check it out:

'Jaffe begins well by acknowledging that the term “girlfriend mode” is sexist and offensive and that it’s the type of comment we, as an industry, find embarrassing.'

'But then he (Jaffe) goes on to say that there’s a valid reason the term is used and that reason is, essentially, that women (or girlfriends) don’t play games.'

'Jaffe says that “the vast, vast, vast majority of adult women want NOTHING to do with a game like Borderlands 2.” While I don’t have access to Jaffe’s research in the area, this is something that may well be true. Or it may not. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that it is utterly beside the point.'

'It’s not about whether or not someone – male or female – would find a game such as Borderlands 2 appealing. Jaffe lumps Borderlands 2 in with similarly violent games such as God of War, Twisted Metal and Gears of War, the content of which will not be to everyone’s taste.

Equally, a term like “girlfriend mode” is not about statistics claiming what percentage of games players are female. So what if the majority of players of games such as Borderlands 2 (and God of War, etc) are male? That’s an aesthetic choice and utterly unrelated to the context in which the term “girlfriend mode” was used.

The term “girlfriend mode” doesn’t say “Hey, maybe you don’t like this type of game, so here’s a way you might like to try.” The term “girlfriend mode” says “Hey, you’re a girl so you must be terrible at playing games, so here’s how we’re going to help you.”

And that is the definition of sexism.'


Of COURSE it matters in the context of my post if women do not play games LIKE Borderlands 2, God of War, Gears of War,etc. If - as you acknowledge it could very well be true that games like BL2, GOW, etc. are played by a huge male majority then it stands to reason that there is a huge majority of women who have little experience with these sorts of games. And thus,  it's not about aesthetics (as you wrongly assume), it's about mechanics. PLAY mechanics.

I never said women could not be great at these kinds of games. I think the many amazingly talented women who kick the shit out of men everyday in these kinds of games can attest to that.

But if the vast majority of women have no interest in these kinds of games then the vast majority of women are not going to be INITIALLY as successful as the vast majority of men (who have huge interest in these sorts of games, compared to the women) given that the play mechanics of these games are not easy for either sex to just pick up and play without having learned and practiced similar mechanics from similar action/shooter games over the years.

This has NOTHING to do with the ability of one sex over another. This has EVERYTHING to do with experience and the fact that- because men are much more into action games than women- men have much more experience playing action games and thus the majority of folks without experience with games like Borderlands 2 will be women. That's no more sexist than saying the majority of folks who choose reading as their primary for of entertainment are women and because of that, women would do much better than men when playing a trivia game where the topic was 'fiction from the last 50 years'.


6 comments:

Jason said...

Classy response, Jaffe.

Eric said...

It seems like he just wanted to sound important and "call someone out" on being sexist. Egos often times get in the way of good journalism unfortunately :\

However, I do take a huuuggee fucking issue with you saying Nicholas Sparks is just for women... I happened to like The Notebook; guys just don't give it a chance :P

da criminal said...

Eric- I never said N Sparks was just for women. I know you are joking but I'm super sensitive right now! :)

And for the record: I like some romantic flicks and LOVE a rom com when it's done well (Harry/Sally, Sleepless, anything from Nancy Meyers,Pretty Women...hell, I even dug Valentine's Day and am excited to watch New Year's Eve this holiday season :)...

David

Eric said...

Sorry David! Only teasing :) I know it's probably no fun having your words all twisted around (seriously, no pun intended!).

Oh man, How Harry Met Sally is a really good one; great taste in movies there!

Kilrahi said...

It's hard to tell if the author just can't read highly complex points (that's something many people honestly can't do, and they're not trying to be mean they just genuinely do not comprehend it and really shouldn't be in a line of work that requires it) OR is just trying to get a career going that actually gets some attention.

Either way, you refute it pretty nicely.

Lewis W said...

You must get fed up with people misquoting you or twisting what you say! :\