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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Assassin's Creed Unity Controversy.

Today I have read 12+ articles about how Assassin's Creed Unity is sexist on two websites. It's just not. Ubisoft is not sexist.

The problem does not lie within the game industry, it is the industry as a whole. We can't hate on one particular team because they chose to write a story in which you play as a male character, that's the story they chose to write. The problem we have to address is: why did they choose to write that story? Is there some kind of ingrained sexism? Was it solely a business move? Do they not consider women an option as lead?

Really, it comes down to this; the majority of the demographic is still male. Females are under-represented, but games with female leads sell less. Presumably, any lead that isn't a white male with dark hair and a stubble sells less because that is what dominates our games.

What we should be doing here is finding a common ground. I don't think anyone can think that women are represented fairly in games. Anyone who thinks they are either doesn't have an understanding of games or is foolish. Anyone who calls an entire studio, shit even an entire company, sexist because of a story they wrote is dumb. Let us not forget that Ubi is the company that has had many playable females in the past, young/old/black/white.

The market is a self fullfilling prophecy.  There are more males that play games so they make games for males, this alienates females so less of them buy games, which makes the market even more dominated by males. This is how the market works, we can only fix it by having a reasonable conversation with devs and ourselves.

If the indie scene is anything to judge the future of the industry by, we are going to be okay guys. 

I guess my point is that there is no big fucking conspiracy. There is no need to call a project lead sexist, you make yourself look like a fucking idiot and encourage people like me, who agree with your main point, to hate you. Equally, there is no reason to call anyone who brings up the idea of under-representation a feminist. It is a concern, at least for me, about our storytelling. Do we need to rely on the same tropes again and again to get a 6 hour story? Let's talk like reasonable people about how we can move forward together.  We are all gamers. 
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