IGDA Board of Directors Issues Statement on Developer Harassment

August 29, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The International Game Developers Association has thrown its support behind game developers who have been the target of harassment online over the last week or so on social media. Depression Quest developer Zoe Quinn, Polytron founder and Fez creator Phil Fish, and Tropes vs. Women in Video Games series creator Anita Sarkeesian were just some of the names mentioned by the IGDA.

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Tropes vs Women in Games: Women as Background Decoration - Part 2

August 27, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Women as Background Decoration: Part 2, the latest video in the Tropes vs Women in Video Games series from Feminist Frequency and Anita Sarkeesian is online. The latest video continues to explore "sexualized female bodies often occupy a dual role as both sexual playthings and the perpetual victims of male violence," according to Sarkeesian's description on YouTube. Here's a little more on the latest episode from Feminist Frequency's YouTube channel:

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#1ReasonToBe Panel Offers Blunt Answers

August 13, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Game researcher Annakaisa Kultima had a blunt answer at the Game Developers Conference Europe's #1ReasonToBe panel today about why she's in the video games industry:

"I have a fucking right to be here," she said to attendees (as detailed by Polygon).

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'Bath & Bedtime Costumes' Released for 'DOA V Ultimate'

August 1, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Crunchyroll points out new DLC for Dead or Alive V: Ultimate Edition that allows player to dress characters up for the game in bath-time or bed-time gear. Yes these ladies will be fighting in towels and whatnot according to the video promo for the DLC.

The privilege of doing so (by buying the "Bath & Bedtime Costumes" DLC) will cost you $15.

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European Women in Games Conference Launches Sept. 10

July 23, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The European Women in Games Conference will open its doors officially on Sept. 10 and will feature two keynote speakers (so far), organizers announced today. This year's event will take place at London South Bank University, in London England.

Topics being focused on this year relevant to women already in the games industry or trying to break in include setting up your own games company, games industry career advice on to how to encourage more school children to consider a career in the games industry, and much more.

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Gamasutra's Game Developer Salary Survey 2014 Highlights the Gender Gap in Video Games Industry

July 22, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to Gamasutra's Game Developer Salary Survey 2014, men working in the video games industry here in the United States made an average of $85,074 in 2013, while women in the same jobs made an average of $72,882. According to Gamasutra, women made 86 cents on every dollar that men made in the U.S. game industry.

While this is certainly an issue that needs to be addressed, the pay gap between men and women is less than the national average: in the U.S. overall, women make 77 cents on every dollar that men make, according figures from a 2012 Census Bureau survey.

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'Last of Us' Voice Actor Criticizes Ubisoft Over Assassin’s Creed: Unity

July 21, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Ashley Johnson who voiced the lead character Ellie in The Last of Us, has criticized Ubisoft over the company’s recent statements about the lack of playable female characters in Assassin’s Creed: Unity multiplayer.

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Blizzard President Says His Company is Working to Create More Diverse and Inclusive Content

July 11, 2014 - GamePolitcs Staff

Blizzard president and a co-founder Mike Morhaime says that his studio is making a concerted effort going forward to create more diverse and inclusive game characters and content. Morhaime made his comments in response to an open letter aimed at him and Blizzard complaining about under-representation of females and ethnic minorities in the company's games.

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IeSF Changes Policy on 'Male-Only' Competitions

July 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

What was once a male-only Hearthstone eSports competition has been opened up to women after the Internet-at-large gave organizers International eSports Federation a public spanking yesterday. The company says that it has listened and has changed its policy going forward. The organizers came under fire on Tuesday when it was revealed that the Hearthstone IeSF World Championship in Baku, Azerbaijan would only be open to men.

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'Male Only' Hearthstone eSports Competition Angers Gaming Community

July 2, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A requirement for Finland's Assembly Summer 2014 Hearthstone competition has outraged the gaming community. According to this PC Gamer report, an announcement page for the Hearthstone qualifier reveals that "The participation is open only to Finnish male players." The qualifier's organizers, the Finnish eSports Federation, are taking a lot of heat for this requirement and for their explanation why they have decided to separate and/or exclude players based on gender.

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Super Podcast Action Committee - Episode 103

June 23, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

On this week's show host E. Zachary Knight is joined by guest host Jeremy Powers to talk about Ubisoft's ongoing controversy about including female characters and its response to the Watch Dogs PC mod, Playstation Now pricing, and some stuff on YouTubers. Download Episode 103 now: SuperPAC Episode 103 (1 hour, 12 minutes) 66.4 MB.

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Research: 'Polite' Female and 'Rude' Male Gamers Accepted Most in Online Games

June 17, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A study of online Call of Duty players found that women who sent out friend requests were more likely to be accepted if they behaved in polite and positive manner during play. Those women who talked trash during matches were less likely to have a friend request accepted. On the flip side, males who talked trash during online play sessions were more likely to have a friend request accepted than those who were polite or remained quiet during a match.

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Indie Developer Explains Why Having Gender Options in its Game is Important

June 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

While two team leaders from Ubisoft (working on Assassin's Creed: Unity and Far Cry 4) say that there wasn't enough time or resources to include female character options for multiplayer, one small developer - chronicled by Polygon - designed its game with inclusivity in mind at the start.

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Female Developer on Inclusion: Ubisoft's Arguments Sound Familiar

June 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

While the difficulty of bringing gender choices to games is a hot topic this week thanks to comments from Ubisoft (related to gender options in the multiplayer portions of Far Cry 4 and Assassin's Creed Unity), one developer says that such efforts are usually the first things to get the axe on a big project.

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Far Cry 4 Developer Takes Heat for No Female Character Options in Multiplayer Coop Mode

June 12, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

In another interview with Polygon about female character options, this time in Far Cry 4, another Ubisoft employee blamed an increased work load for the game not featuring more options. Far Cry 4 game director Alex Hutchinson said that the team were "inches away" from allowing players to choose between a man or woman co-op buddy in the upcoming shooter's multiplayer... but it never materialized.

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Former AC Developer: Ubisoft Could Add Female Character Options to 'AC: Unity' in One or Two Days

June 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Jonathan Cooper, a former Assassin's Creed designer says that Ubisoft's claims about the complexity of adding playable female character options in Assassin's Creed: Unity is bullshit. Cooper, who now works at Naughty Dog, says that such a task would be simple to implement. In fact, he says it would be one or two days' worth of work.

"In my educated opinion, I would estimate this to be a day or two's work. Not a replacement of 8000 animations," Cooper said on Twitter.

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Ubisoft Attempts to Explain the Lack of Female Options in 'Assassin's Creed Unity'

June 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Ubisoft is taking a little bit of heat this week for not including female co-op character options in its latest Assassin's Creed, but developers working on the game say that those options were not included because they ran into "the reality of production."

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RedBedlam Promises a 'Strong Female Lead' for 'Bedlam'

June 5, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

"You don’t need balls to be ballsy," notes Scottish author Christopher Brookmyre, in an announcement promoting the new game from UK developer RedBedlam based on his novel, Bedlam. The first-person shooter is slightly different from that novel, in that the developers have swapped out male protagonist Ross Baker for a "strong female lead."

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SOE Announces 2014 Gamers in Real Life Scholarship Winner

June 2, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Sony Online Entertainment LLC (SOE) today announced the winner of the 2014 Gamers in Real Life (G.I.R.L.) Scholarship. In its seventh year, the scholarship program encourages women to pursue careers in the video game industry in areas of development and design. This year's recipient is Erin Loelius of Manasquan, N.J.

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Women in Games International Names New Advisory Board Members

May 16, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Women In Games International has announced new members to its advisory board. WIGI 's advisory board helps support its mission statement of promoting diversity in the industry and helping women advance their careers.

"Everyone involved with WIGI is passionate about making the video game industry more inclusive, and we all have amazing ideas about outreach programs we can create to make that happen," said president and CEO Belinda Van Sickle.

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Research: 23 Percent of Men Use Opposite Gender Avatars in MMOs

May 13, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Syracuse University researchers have conducted a study that aims to suss out whether female avatars in games are actually women in real-life or just men role-playing as female characters.

Research that included work at Syracuse University considered 375 people playing a multi-player World of Warcraft quest. Researchers found that 23 percent of the men chose opposite-gender avatars, compared to 7 percent of women who played as male characters.

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Fine Young Capitalists Launch Women in Games Initiative

March 28, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

The Fine Young Capitalists is looking for a few good women (or anyone who self identifies as a woman) to take part in its special Women In Video Games Initiative. To take part, would-be applicants are asked to submit a pitch document about a game idea that is right around 1,500 words in length.

The submissions will be judged by the community, with the top five best pitches getting some very professional treatment.

Here's more from the website:

Super Podcast Action Committee - Episode 89

February 25, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

On this week's show hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight talk about the latest GamePolitics poll (Will King be in the running for the Consumerist’s Worst Company in America tournament?), the trend towards consumers choosing digital games over retail game discs, and Capcom's response to offering more gender options for the main character in Deep Down. Download Episode 89 now: SuperPAC Episode 89 (1 hour, 7 minutes) 76.9 MB.

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Capcom Addresses Lack of Gender Choices in 'Deep Down'

February 19, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Capcom has addressed concerns that it offers no options for a female lead character in its upcoming hardcore RPG game, Deep Down. Producer Kazunori Sugiura addressed the issue and explained that an earlier report that there were "12 main characters in Deep Down, all of them male" was incorrect.

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GDC Advocacy Track Adds Four Talks Relating to Gender Equality and Workplace Discrimination

February 5, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Organizers of the Game Developers Conference have announced four new talks that have been added to the Advocacy track that deal with diversity, gender workplace discrimination and more.

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SOE Accepting Applications for 2014 G.I.R.L. Game Design Competition

February 5, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Sony Online Entertainment announced today that it is now accepting applications and submissions for its 2014 Gamers In Real Life (G.I.R.L.) Game Design Competition. Through the G.I.R.L. scholarship program, SOE awards one winner with a $10,000 scholarship to be applied towards tuition, room and board, and other educational expenses at the winner's college or university.

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Naughty Dog Dev Rebukes NYT Review of 'The Last of Us'

December 31, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

In a recent  New York Times editorial Naughty Dog user interface designer Alexandria Neonakis points out that most modern video games often portray female characters as damsels in distress or as "male characters" inside "female bodies." Neonakis' editorial takes aim at the NYT review of The Last of Us and their opinion on protagonist Ellie. She calls the character a "triumph in storytelling and representation" of female characters.

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PAX Events to Feature 'Diversity Lounges' in 2014

December 18, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

2013 was a challenging year for the organizers of the Penny Arcade Expo, mostly due to comments made by its founders that offended many in the community. To try and bring some goodwill back to those injured parties, PAX organizers plan on creating a special area at its events that promote "diversity."

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Heroes of the Storm Game Director Apologizes for Comments

November 25, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Dustin Browder, who is the game director on Heroes of the Storm, has made a public apology for his seemingly terse comments during an interview with Rock, Paper, Shotgun about the sexualization of female characters in the upcoming online team brawler featuring popular Blizzard game characters.

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Tropes vs Women in Video Games: Ms. Male Character

November 18, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The latest video in Anita Sarkeesian's Tropes vs Women video series explores Ms. Male characters. Called the "Smurfette Principle" by Sarkeesian, it is when developers create female counterparts with little or no difference based on strong male characters. The best example of this practice would be Ms. Pac Man, who - besides wearing a bow on her head - showed very little difference from her manly counterpart.

Here's more from the video description on YouTube:

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E. Zachary KnightZippy, So you can't find even one?08/29/2014 - 1:04pm
ZippyDSMleeAndrew Eisen:Right because shes prefect and never exaggerates... *rolls eyes*08/29/2014 - 12:53pm
SleakerAnd honestly, nearly all of the games she references, or images she depicts I've always cringed at and wondered why they were included in games to begin with, from pinups through explicit sexual depictions or direct abuse. I think it's cheap storytelling.08/29/2014 - 12:35pm
Sleaker@AE - aren't most people fundamentally misunderstanding her at this point? haha.. On a related note I think a lot of the backlash is coming from males that think she is telling them their 'Generic Male Fantasy' is bad and wrong.08/29/2014 - 12:33pm
Andrew EisenAnd no, I don't think the female community would be upset over the performance of a case study in and of itself. Possibly the mostivations behind such a study, the methodology or conclusions but not the mere idea of a case study.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
Andrew EisenAmusingly, these videos aren't saying you can't/shouldn't use tropes or that sexual representations are inherently problematic so those are very silly things to have a problem with and indicate a fundamental misunderstanding of the series.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
SleakerDo you think the female community would get extremely angry over a male doing a case study on the negative impact of sex-novels and their unrealistic depiction of males and how widespread they are in american culture?08/29/2014 - 12:25pm
SleakerThe other thing that people might find problematic is that they see no problem with sexual representations of females (or males) in games. And realistically, why is there anything wrong with sexual representations in fiction?08/29/2014 - 12:24pm
SleakerTo even discuss or bring up these issues at a cultural level to begin with. Going straight for games to many probably feels like a huge overstepping given that it's interactive story in many cases, and when you're telling a story why can't you use tropes.08/29/2014 - 12:21pm
SleakerI think a large part of the controversy stems from the idea that games aren't culture setters, but culture reactors, and simply depict what is already in culture. So people don't care that games use tropes or are blind to them because we've failed ...08/29/2014 - 12:20pm
AvalongodBesides, what better way to make her point for her than to respond to her opinion by behaving like a misogynistic asshole. Sure, it may be a troll account, but that doesn't make it "ok"08/29/2014 - 12:19pm
AvalongodWhether Sarkeesian is "right" or "wrong" is not relevant, neither she nor any other woman should have to expect that her opinion will be met with death threats or even just sexist language.08/29/2014 - 12:18pm
Andrew EisenOh, may as well. Zip, I challenge you to cite three specific examples from the TvW videos (use direct quotes and time stamps) and explain how/why they ring hollow or are over exaggerated.08/29/2014 - 11:56am
Andrew EisenZip - Bullies on both sides? What both sides? And of course bullies are worse than people who aren't bullies.08/29/2014 - 11:23am
Neeneko(2) yes, male tropes also have problems and gender studies looks at those too. But this highlights a privilage problem, the idea that if male issues are not brought up too female issues should not be discussed.08/29/2014 - 10:42am
Neeneko@ZippyDSMlee - jumping back (1) one can acknowledge systemic problems without requiring every male be a Neanderthal.08/29/2014 - 10:42am
MaskedPixelanteI don't like the new 3DS, mostly because it means there's a good chance future 3DS games won't be compatible with the current models.08/29/2014 - 9:30am
ConsterI don't get why Amazon decided to buy this "Twitch" fellow, really. It took him ages to beat Pokemon.08/29/2014 - 8:31am
ZippyDSMleeIt goes without saying that we need to et rid of the bullies on both sides that are far worse than Sarkeesian or Quin will ever be.08/29/2014 - 8:24am
ZippyDSMleeI'm talking more about the genreal movement and how silly it is, as for Sarkeesian half of what she is says rings hollw while the other half tend to be over exsagerated.08/29/2014 - 8:22am
 

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