Sections

Backlash fears halt global Dead Or Alive Xtreme 3 launch

Team Ninja has no EU and US launch plans due to concern over series' depictions of women

Dead Or Alive Xtreme 3 will not be published in Europe or North America, the first time Team Ninja's beach volleyball series has failed to reach those markets

Responding to a fan enquiry on Facebook, an official representative of the game said, "We do not bring DOAX3 to the west and won't have any plan change in the future. Thank you for asking."

As more responses rolled in, the representative clarified the studio's position. "Do you know many issues happening in video game industry with regard to how to treat female in video game industry? We do not want to talk those things here. But certainly we have gone through in last year or two to come to our decision. Thank you."

For those not familiar with the series - which started with Dead Or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball in 2003 - the appeal is as much down to its scantily clad, generously proportioned and perpetually giggling female character models as it is engaging with the various mini-games that comprise its gameplay.

With that in mind, it's understandable that Team Ninja and publisher Koei Tecmo might have anticipated a backlash, and weighed that negative publicity against the costs of marketing and any potential sales.

Dead Or Alive Xtreme 3 will launch in Japan in February 2016. We have contacted Koei Tecmo for further comment on its plans for a worldwide release.

Related stories

Capcom wins patent lawsuit against Koei Tecmo

After second round in court, judge orders Koei Tecmo to pay nearly $1.5 million in compensation

By Haydn Taylor

Capcom suing Koei Tecmo

Resident Evil publisher accuses Dynasty Warriors firm of multiple patent infringement

By Brendan Sinclair

Latest comments (41)

Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
Before cries of censorship abound, it should be noted that they never had concrete plans to bring it over to the West. The series also apparently sells poorly outside the Far East, so that, plus marketing/localisation/PR budgets would mean that they'd not gain much in revenue for their effort.
13Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robin Clarke Producer, AppyNation Ltd3 years ago
I don't think posting this story under an entirely speculative headline is very helpful.

They're most likely not releasing the game in the West because they don't think it'll sell enough to warrant the cost of localising and publishing it, which they would be shouldering themselves as Microsoft Game Studios are no longer involved.

(I assume from the replies below that I can see that the usual aggrieved conspiracy theorists have come out of the woodwork. It would be great if gamesindustry.biz would actually bother with comment moderation as a matter of course instead of only taking it seriously when the toxicity threatens to become a PR issue. YouTube conspiracy videos and muckraking tabloids are not legitimate news sources. Spreading defamatory rumours about visible women in the industry is unacceptable, and certainly not something anyone wants to see on what is supposed to be an industry resource.)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Robin Clarke on 27th November 2015 12:36pm

12Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
They're most likely not releasing the game in the West because they don't think it'll sell enough to warrant the cost of localising and publishing it
That is not the answer they gave however Robin. They explicitly said they don't want to deal with "issues happening in video game industry with regard to how to treat female in video game".

Hasn't a handful of similar events happened recently, with Japanese games being more censored in the west in the form of removed or changed female outfits?

AAA Developers, so far us indies have spoken about the things you couldn't say for fear of backlash or losing your job, since we can. But it's time you broke your silence if you want to revert the direction in which AAA is going. We don't have the power to do it for you.
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Show all comments (41)
Jamie Firth Video Games Production 3 years ago
"Business decides to not release content that might be considered offensive".
That's not censorship. That's a business decision.
18Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
David Vink Game Designer 3 years ago
They should have added the male cast of fighters to this game as well years ago. In tight speedos and loose-fitting shorts with penis physics! It should double their target audience, making the localization worth the trouble again.
7Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Andrew Watson Tools Programmer 3 years ago
They're most likely not releasing the game in the West because they don't think it'll sell enough to warrant the cost of localising [...] it
It's already been localised into english. I don't know why they don't just do a digital-only release in the west though, considering how easy that is to do these days.

Ultimately this decision doesn't change anything. People who wanted the game can still import it, and everyone else can have fun screaming at each other on twitter over it.
3Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Tom Keresztes Programmer 3 years ago
http://www.vgchartz.com/game/479/dead-or-alive-4/

Most of the sales were in Japan.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
Surely that is self-censorship if ever there was such a thing. The fact their response to questions was "Do you know many issues happening in video game industry with regard to how to treat female in video game industry? We do not want to talk those things here"
Which would be more relevant if they were originally inclined to bring it to the West and then changed their minds... but since they didn't, I don't see how it could be classed as "self-censorship". This all seems like tricksy PR designed to at the very least sell more units of the East Asian release through importers.

Or, to put it another way... Which plays better to the "perceived target demographic" - saying it's not financially worthwhile to release a game in the West, or implying they'd love to release it, but those damn feminists/SJWs/moral-do-gooders would cause trouble if they did?

Edited 4 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 25th November 2015 5:43pm

4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Jamie Firth Video Games Production 3 years ago
I take your point and by the definition yeah it is. Sorta. But calling it censorship just winds up the free speech sirens - no-one is *stopping* them selling it: they are choosing not to sell it in some territories. Their rights of expression are not being halted.
I have conversations with friends that I wouldn't have with my parents - I don't call that self-censorship: I call that tact.
No-one is telling them they can't do something.
8Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Paul Jace Merchandiser 3 years ago
They should have added the male cast of fighters to this game as well years ago. In tight speedos and loose-fitting shorts with penis physics! It should double their target audience, making the localization worth the trouble again.
Well I suppose that's only fair. And they could even name the next one Dead Or Alive Xtreme 3: Special Sausage Fest Edition. But considering all consoles are region free this gen(except the Wii U if I'm not mistaken) it's not that big of a deal because XBO and PS4 owners can still play imported versions.
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany3 years ago
Morville, right on time (and on the spot) once again.

Yesterday we were talking about this, and personally I don't believe that's the reason. Sure some people could get mad, but it's not like the game is going to be banned or ruin your reputation as a company. Just look at Marvelous AQL and their "Senran Kagura" or Tamsoft and their "Onechanbara"... or all those fanservice Vita games.

My theory and what I personally believe that happens here: They just can't go and say "Hey dear fans, you are too few, it's not worthy for us to localize a game that only a small number of you will actually buy" because that would cause the actual backslash. It's easier to say that and let the fans blame some "SJW-Sarkeesian conspiracy if shadow" (like they are already doing)
6Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
It's easier to say that and let the fans blame some "SJW-Sarkeesian conspiracy if shadow"

Yet Alfonso, Anita's message has been precisely that developers should not make games like Dead or Alive.
She was praised by the media everywhere, including non gaming media. She made a lot of money. Received a lot of support. Anyone who spoke against that message, was branded misogynistic, or a straight white male basement #gamergate dweller, including by gamesindustry.biz, with a very one sided, frankly ridiculous and shallow narrative.

And now that we are seeing developers say they see the west as a place that hates boobies and sexy women in video games, a game with boobs and sexy women is not finding itself coming here. Are the developers lying about the motive? Let's say they are, does that change the fact that we have been promoting that kind of message for the past 2 years? Will we continue to send this silly message that objectifying women in video games is bad?

Now that you are seeing the possible outcome of that, maybe you'll rethink your attitude.
But like I said, it's not like indie development will be affected by that. This is a conflict for the AAA industry, and also related with the notion that video games are for children.

And next year, with Virtual Reality devices being released, we'll probably be looking at a huge influx of actual pornographic, priced tagged, realistic 3D games on the market. I wonder how the industry will react to that, when women in bikinis are controversial right now.
5Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
Yet Alfonso, Anita's message has been precisely that developers should not make games like Dead or Alive.
Let's rephrase that to Dead or Alive - Beach Volleyball Boob Physics Wankathon, shall we? Because Dead Or Alive Xtreme 3 is part of the Beach Volleyball spin-off series, which features
an improved breasts physics engine from Dead or Alive 5 Last Round
I think the PR from that alone isn't worth the hassle.
This is a conflict for the AAA industry, and also related with the notion that video games are for children.
The mainline Dead or Alive series isn't facing this "issue". I would be tempted to say this is something faced more by hentai VN companies, than anybody else. Interestingly, though, there's been quite a few "sexy" Japanese VNs released on Steam in the past year (including at least one dealing with lesbian themes, and one with nudity), and there's not been one-word said against them. So perhaps it's just the juvenile wanky jiggle-athon that's an issue?

Side-point that is a major digression: Writing that last sentence, I was reminded of how Carry-On films used to be one of the British Film Industry's exports. Yet you look at them now, and they stand as a testament to how nudge-nudge-wink-wink the British were about sex. Could it be argued that DoA Beach Tittyfest is the game industry's Carry On franchise?

Edited 6 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 26th November 2015 10:26am

1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
You don't like these games and don't think anyone else should and therefore you agree with the people doing all within their power both through argument and intimidation to stop others from playing them.
I don't mind them, y'know. But the appeal is fairly juvenile, right? No-one is going to argue a volleyball franchise where the boobs have physics is a Great Game.

And I think you should note that I haven't said people can't/shouldn't import them. So give it a rest, yeah?

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 26th November 2015 10:54am

2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
I thought you had me on ignore. ;-)
I do. Interesting fact 1) Using a different browser and not logging in means you can see what people on your ignore list say, and 2) I dislike the idea of people on my ignore list referring to me without me knowing, so occasionally I do 1). :p

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 26th November 2015 11:21am

3Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Tom Keresztes Programmer 3 years ago
I do. Interesting fact 1) Using a different browser and not logging in means you can see what people on your ignore list say, and 2) I dislike the idea of people on my ignore list referring to me without me knowing, so occasionally I do 1). :p
We most be more inclusive, right? Accepting and tolerating dissent ?
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany3 years ago
Now that you are seeing the possible outcome of that, maybe you'll rethink your attitude.
You made remember why I had you on ignore list... because of that "attitude". I'll answer you one last time

Anita talks, manages people to listen to her. And you can't do that without rising a valid point. You can disagree or not, but those are facts; a part of the industry is by her side, other part is not. The first change their games, the second don't. See? no conspiracy here; just logic talk.

I disagree with Anita in more than one point, never got attacked for that. So maybe it's not what you say but HOW you say. For example: Don't tell people "maybe you should rethink xxx", I don't have to rethink anything; you can try and convince me, or not, but in the end nobody has the right to tell another person that he need to rethink his ideas since "he is wrong"

And that's it. You have a good day now.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany3 years ago
@Tom
We most be more inclusive, right? Accepting and tolerating dissent ?
Always. But not disrespect or those who seems to use this comments to flush their professional frustrations (not saying names; but they are more than one)
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 3 years ago
Robert Mac-Donald says, "Anita's message has been precisely that developers should not make games like Dead or Alive."

John Owens says, "You don't like these games and don't think anyone else should and therefore you agree with the people doing all within their power both through argument and intimidation to stop others from playing them."

Both statements are demonstrably wrong, though John's in a more subtle way. While you can probably find some particular phrases in Sarkeesian's work and pull them out of context to try to demonstrate otherwise, any fair assessment of the full body of her work will make it obvious that she's merely expressing criticism, not arguing that such games should not be made or that people shouldn't be allowed to play them. And I have never, ever seen a single posted comment here on gi.biz claiming that nobody should be allowed to like and/or play sexist games.

Not that there's any arguing with these GamerGate-like folks. They're convinced that they're being oppressed in some way, and facts won't ever change their minds. Their identity seems somehow tightly bound up in making sure we never mention that a game where a primary focus is women's breasts bouncing up and down is not only sexist but, frankly, juvenile.
11Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
Now that you are seeing the possible outcome of that, maybe you'll rethink your attitude.
Don't tell people "maybe you should rethink xxx"
I didn't. There is no 'should' in what I said. And If you start doing personal attacks to people's personalities, and not their arguments, the comment section will quickly derail into personal drama, so I won't address personal things. As for the rest of your comment, well honestly I don't get what point you tried to convey in it.

My point is clear: developers, there is nothing bad with sexualizing women in video games. If anyone has an compelling that sexualizing women in video games is harmful, I'm yet to hear it. Nobody is harmed from that. So don't do it for a moral reason. Do it for an economic reason if it makes sense, but not for moral ones and not because you feel pressured into it due to bad PR, because there are many of us that will support you. Do what you want, games are an artistic medium. You are supposed to express yourself how you want, even if in a juvenile way. Those that disagree, can try to show me the other way.
it obvious that she's merely expressing criticism, not arguing that such games should not be made or that people shouldn't be allowed to play them
Curt, I would love to see Anita saying it's ok for developers to make the DOA series, and ok for people to play it and buy it, and enjoy it.
If you have any video evidence of her ever saying something like this regarding a similar game, then please link. I would also like to point out that Anita is another derail of this comment section, the only reason we started talking about that was a tangent point when someone said:
It's easier to say that and let the fans blame some "SJW-Sarkeesian conspiracy if shadow" (like they are already doing)
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
If there wasn't any intimidation "out there" then Team Ninja would have released this game unless you think they agree with Anita's argument and were convinced but only if you are American.
Oh do stop being silly. :)
intimidation
?
We recently learned that Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 is in development for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita. This week’s issue of Famitsu magazine provides more details from an interview with producer Yosuke Hayashi. [Thanks, Hachima.]

Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 wiill be sold in Japan and Asia; however, if there’s enough demand, then Koei Tecmo may develop a version adjusted for North America.
From the link I posted in my first comment. That's dated August.

But, no, clearly "intimidation" is the reason why this game is not getting a release in the West.

Edit to add: Interesting somewhat-in-depth article about all this: http://www.usgamer.net/articles/doax3-still-not-releasing-in-us-koei-tecmo-makes-excuses

He dismisses the Gothic Loli as a possibility, but perhaps Xenoblade Chronicle X's costume-change has made KT wary of such situations?

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 26th November 2015 8:07pm

3Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 3 years ago
Curt, I would love to see Anita saying it's ok for developers to make the DOA series, and ok for people to play it and buy it, and enjoy it.
Either you've gone completely off-topic, or you're trying to argue that if a person doesn't actually say it's ok to play/buy/enjoy those games, they believe the games should be censored. In which case, you are much more urgently in need of dealing with people such as Ronald Regan, who by that argument also wanted such games to be censored, than you are with Sarkeesian.

If you want to get back to facts, rather than you twisting things around, I am stepping right out and saying the claims you guys made that I quoted above are factually incorrect. I see you've moved on to other statements of "fact" that you can't support (see the second paragraph of the post above), and assume that in response to this you're just going to make up more stuff that "supports" your argument that the white European male is one of the most oppressed groups in the world.

I've seen overly politically-correct people fall in to their little la-la lands and I've gotten annoyed by that, but you "GamerGate" types (or pick whatever other label for your poor oppressed selves you like; I don't care) really take the cake. You appear to have no capability whatsoever to interpret any sort of differing views as anything but a direct attack that's trying to destroy your way of life.
3Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany3 years ago
Morville
He dismisses the Gothic Loli as a possibility, but perhaps Xenoblade Chronicle X's costume-change has made KT wary of such situations?
I think that's more Nintendo's doing (Like with The underwear costume in the last Fatal Frame) You release Xenoblade in PlayStation and I doubt they would do any alteration.
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
you're trying to argue that if a person doesn't actually say it's ok to play/buy/enjoy those games, they believe the games should be censored.

https://youtu.be/9L_Wmeg7OTU
Watch the first minute of that interview. Anita says:
One of the problems with that [sexualized women in video games] it that actually reinforces the myth that women are sexual objects, sexual playthings for males, and we are not
Later on:
The industry as a whole perpetuates these issues of sexism and misogyny
So, yes. If Anita and people that share her views are saying that such things are bad, logically that implies they think such things should not be created. Or are you telling me their message is that "sexism in video games is bad, but don't worry about it, keep making sexist games"? If anything, their message is not clear then, and they have to make it clear.

That's why I ask to see one instance of Anita, or people who support her views, actually come out and say something like "we should have games that are not sexualized as well, but it's ok to have sexualized games for boys". They have not said that. The message that people seem to be picking up upon, including the Japanese devs, is that all sexualized women is bad and you should not make a game that has sexualized women, is it not?

You keep talking a lot and a lot Curt, but you are yet to show any evidence. All you have to offer us here is your interpretation without even linking to something she has said to back up your interpretations. And please stop with the personal insults like "you gamergaters", adds nothing to a discussion, it isn't an actual argument and makes you look unprofessional.
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Nobody, in any debate, has to play both sides of an argument for their opinion to be valid. Anita Sarkeesian specifically set out to create a critique of video games, not to rub developers on the belly. How did this fantastic idea of balance come in, where she can't do one without doing the other?

And you can't ragingly disagree with her position then none the less demand that she supports yours. This seems silly. I'd find it annoying if in the middle of a debate, my opposite started patting my hand and nodding, telling me my position is perfectly valid too. It would be ingratiating and mealy-mouthed, dishonest. This is arguing for politicians and children.

As far as sexuality vs sexism goes, it's those of you who are black and white on the issue and can take a side who are most out of whack with the rest of us. Nobody delights in sexism but most any developer, if you push them, supports the right of games to be sexual and is against censorship broadly if not fanatically. So for most of us GG is not a forum to discuss these issues sensibly, even if the hardcore minority continues on their great quest to tilt at windmills.

At this stage an awful lot of Gamergate, on both sides, is a made up fight about nothing, waged by people who fantasise they are battling for all of us but really are after personal vindication. Somehow, they have tangled up this somewhat minor and overly-intellectual online argument with their personal identity. So people go from calm to volcanic at the drop of a verb. If a great debate amounts to a bunch of really angry people making up new words to call each other on a forum, anybody with a life switches off. That's why everybody in the industry leapt on the proGGers when the threats started. It wasn't because everybody was suddenly a politically correct sheep, like the ever-suffering proGGers wanted to believe. It was because violent threats and the shutting down of conferences was actually a real, live issue that was happening, as opposed to the bullshit rah-rah-rah that the GG crowd carry on with every day. Oh, your fantasy battle is so real to you, you think it's worth threatening peoples lives now? Then Je Suis fucking Sarkeesian, asshole.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Barry Meade on 27th November 2015 3:21pm

7Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Anthony Gowland Director, Ant Workshop3 years ago
So, yes. If Anita and people that share her views are saying that such things are bad, logically that implies they think such things should not be created.
I know that salt and fast food are bad for me. I still put salt on my meals and eat fast food sometimes. So you're wrong - knowing that something can have detrimental effects doesn't automatically imply you want that thing to not exist.
5Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
Anthony, I think when it comes to sexuality, people make things more complicated, especially when us men try to speak on the perspective of girls. So instead of sexuality, let's talk about violence. Pick a game like Hatred, or Postal, or Manhunt or movies like Rampage 1 and 2.

If someone asks me, "is it ok to make such movies or games?", I'd answer "yes. Threre is nothing wrong in making games or movies that are about violence, or even promoting it". What would be wrong, is that if those were all the values we had in society. Psychological studies suggest that what we say, is not as important as what we imitate from other people's behavior. We all grew up with violent video games, but we are not violent because our parents are not violent, our friends were not violent. Our values were stronger than violence. So, while I can denounce the values of a violent video games (violence is bad), I can say it's completely ok to make a violent video game at the same time.

Now, is it ok to have a sexualized game? By the same logic, yes. I don't want to date a girl that is dumb and all looks. I want a girl that is smart. The fact games exist that show girls that are purely eye candy, like games that are about violent characters, should not be the reason why girls become purely eye candy or why men become sexist, correct? We need other values. So, we can denounce the values of a sexist game (being a shallow girl that is all nails and hair is bad), but say at the same time that it's ok to make such games, for the enjoyment of people.

We have fought the notion that violent games caused violence in the past, so why should we say now that sexy video games make people sexist?

And here is where I don't agree with your salt analogy. First, you are saying that salt is bad for your health, but good for your tastes. Is Anita saying what I just said, and what you just said, that sexist values are bad as values, but they can be good and positive thing for people as a medium to enjoy? As in, recognizing that salt is bad for the health but good for the soul?

What is unclear about Anita's message is, that while we all know she is saying sexism is bad as a value, is she saying or not that sexually appealing video games are bad as well for the consumers or not?. As in "there is something wrong with you if you enjoy salt. That's the damage the patriarchy has done to you". So, what is her message exactly?

And, again, it seems that japanese devs and lots of people are understanding that the message is that we shouldn't enjoy girls portrayed in a sexualized way, ever. That is what the statement from the Japanese devs on why the are not releasing a game seems to be coming from. If we do not agree with that statement, maybe we need to do a better job at exposing what we actually believe in. Asking Anita whether she is ok with DOA being released and people enjoying it or not would be a great start.
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Come now you're reading into it there, if you think I've nothing to say you've never met me
It's not at all clear from the evidence that DOA is a victim of self censorship. They have publicly floated more than one reason and I find each of them compelling, I'm sure it *was* a multitude of reasons combined that caused them to take that decision but I'd say the primary one is they know it's c-list game and nobody is really interested in it. If they could make big bank with it I doubt an army of detractors could stop them publishing.
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 3 years ago
Barry did a great job of saying a lot of what I was trying to say.

Robert's staying well off the rails with things like,
Or are you telling me their message is that "sexism in video games is bad, but don't worry about it, keep making sexist games"?
No, of course not. Sarkeesian's message, as far as I have seen, is "1. There's clear, incontrovertable evidence, which I have presented, of sexism in games. 2. This is probably bad, in certain ways, for society." I haven't seen her enter the debate on exactly what sort of further limits, if any, should be placed on freedom of speech in light of this.

But I think this really gets to the core of things:
I also don't know what relevance the harassment carried out by gamer gate has to do with this issue of self-censorship due to a toxic environment which is a serious one to have for a creative industry.
A point I've been trying to make is that the GamerGate reaction is intimately bound up with this "self-censorship" issue because the two things are just different sides of the same coin.

First, let's make it clear: "self-censorship" is often a very good thing. The "self-censorship" that keeps people from making and distributing games simulating snuff porn, physical abuse of women, or lynching of homosexuals and black people, to give just a small handful of examples, is completely desirable for society, and we'd like to continue to maintain an environment "toxic" to such things. I'm just going to assume that everybody here agrees with this position; feel free to let us know if you don't.

Given that some self-censorship and an environment toxic to certain views is a good thing, the question is merely, "what, as a society should we be strongly discouraging?" I don't think that there's a clear line that can be drawn here, and we need to look at a lot of examples and discuss them, which is precisely where people like Sarkeesian are doing us a great service, by collecting evidence and providing a starting point for discussion.

A number of people out there, particularly from what one might call "traditional minorities" and the feminist camp and the like, maintain that they feel that the current gaming environment has elements that they find discourage them from speaking up, and that is clearly the case, given the death threats, doxxing, and other malicious activities we've seen in reaction to the pointing out of anti-feminist tropes in gaming. Those reacting against this are free to argue about this, but their complaints that they feel that they're now in a hostile and unwelcoming environment get no sympathy from me: all I have to say is "welcome to where some other people have been all this time." What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, and if you feel that making others with different viewpoints uncomfortable is a good thing, you should admit that you're doing it yourselves and put a stop to it before complaining about others.

Is it bad that a company decided not to release to certain markets a masturbatory fantasy of girls as sex objects rather than people? I don't know for sure either way, but I certainly think it's a reasonable topic for discussion, rather than something that should be condemned immediately as "someone's trying to kill free speech."
...former game journalists from large outlets like IGN and GameSpot were found threatening to stop supporting Play-Asia for them openly supporting gamers who want to purchase Dead or Alive Xtreme 3.
And how is it a bad thing that those "former game journalists" are exercising their right to free speech and to make decisions about their own behaviour?

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Curt Sampson on 28th November 2015 12:34am

1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
Robert's staying well off the rails

I'm the one staying on topic here. A company said they don't want to release their game in the west because they feel the west will react badly to it. The issue here has to do with the message western developers, gamers and the media are sending to people out there.

And the most direct question to be answered is: do we agree with that, that games with female sexual appeal should not be released to the western audience, or do we not agree and need to work on our image so our message is clear?

Harassment, gamergate, whatever, is what is off the rails here.
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
The issue here has to do with the message western developers, gamers and the media are sending to people out there.
Question: Do you regard the decision to not release hentai Visual Novels in the West a symptom of this message? Because I'm telling you now, there's been a massive amount of porn/implied porn not released in the West due to "business decisions", for a long-time. This is not something that's new. Stop trying to imply that it is, and that it's to do with SJWs and censorship.
do we agree [...] that games with female sexual appeal should not be released to the western audience, or do we not agree and need to work on our image so our message is clear?
No-one is saying that games with female sexual appeal should not be released to the Western audience, and, as I have already stated above, there's plenty of instances of sexy games. Here, I'll make it even easier for you: http://store.steampowered.com/search/?snr=1_7_7_151_12&term=nudity and https://www.mangagamer.com/ (both links NSFW to a greater or lesser extent).
Self-censorship doesn't stop people from making people simulating snuff porn, physical abuse of women, or lynching of homosexuals and black people.

Regular censorship does that and rightly so.
No. Regular censorship ensures that such things aren't sold/distributed without legal repercussions. Self-censorship ensures that these things aren't produced in the first-place.

Edited 4 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 28th November 2015 12:05pm

1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
Stop trying to imply that it is, and that it's to do with SJWs and censorship.
How is it "implying" when the developers themselves said the reason was because of the atmosphere here regarding those kinds of games? You keep pressing that key when we already know the reason they gave for that. And like I said, whether they are lying for an advertisement stunt or not, we know that a lot of westerners have been saying sexy games are bad for a while now. There is a part of our generation being the "we should ban rock and roll music" crowd, but instead they are saying "we should ban sexy female characters in video games".
No-one is saying that games with female sexual appeal should not be released to the Western audience
There has been a lot of internet articles, personal tweets and blogs expressing that opinion. If you haven't seen any, you haven't been browsing places that talk about that sort of content.

And the people, like Anita, who have not yet plant their feet and said whether they think such games should be developed at all or not, are "criticizing them", like it happened with that Kotaku article on the Dragon's Crow sorcerer: "Game Developers Really Need To Stop Letting Teenage Boys Design Their Characters"

Do they really need to stop? What is wrong with making them?
Then, you have the most upvoted comment there:
No, this is totally worthy of criticism. This isn't satire, this isn't highlighting an ugly truth to expose it, this is just flat out demeaning.
I've been watching this with some interest as I personally like the genre, but I will be passing purely because of the level of immaturity on display.
I am not okay with marginalizing 50% of the population.
The opinion? That the game is demeaning [to women], and that even though you like the genre, you shouldn't buy the game purely because of immaturity and not being ok with marginalizing women. Had he stopped at immaturity, it would be ok, but when you add "demeaning" and "not ok to marginalize" women, what these people are actually expressing is a sentiment that such games should not be released, and this is not ok to enjoy them, otherwise, you are sexist. This is just one example (I didn't even follow the dragon's crown controversy, nor played the game, I just remembered this as an example and went after it). There are thousands more.

Again: there is in fact an apparently large group of people saying rock and roll is corrupting the youth and should be banned, but with sexy characters instead. A group that may even be larger than the people that were concerned with violent video games in the past. This is worthy of being addressed by us. It will help if people and the media stop calling anyone who doesn't think sexualizing females is bad a "gamergater", and address the situation properly. Where did the adults in the games industry go?
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
I think I recall the IGDA.org being involved a lot in the past with the debate on violence in video games.
I also recall them (or at least some of their members) having panels about being more inclusive to women in the video games industry, and other women related issues.

I have not seen anything yet from them when it comes to this whole debate on what people are calling sexism in video games. From what I can gather, they are completely silent on it. Why?

They even have an Advocacy: Anti-Censorship & social issues subsection on their site, with articles from violence in video games up to 2013. But as far as I know, they have been completely silent in this whole Anita/Gamergate/SJW/Sexism in videogames debate.

Their mission:
Mission: To advance the careers and enhance the lives of game developers by connecting members with their peers, promoting professional development, and advocating on issues that affect the developer community.

This mission is carried out in the following key areas:

Advocacy: Make change in our industry by identifying and speaking out on key issues
Perhaps this is not considered an issue yet, because there are no danger of actual laws to regulate video games differently at this point?
Anyway, just wanted to point them out in their silence.
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 3 years ago
I think you are being played for fools. We are talking TeamNinja here. They literally invented boob physics in video games! It is not like their other games are on the frontier of graceful female characters. Which IP of theirs could be damaged in the west by this game? The one where you fight wearing nothing but a string tanga or a towel?

Don't act surprised when some region free game from Japan mysteriously has full English menus and subtitles. Because for the low sales the predecessors had in the West, this one message is probably all the PR they need, the rest can be done by grey importers.
5Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Nick McCrea Gentleman, Pocket Starship3 years ago
@ John Owens

I always think Jerry Holkins writes brilliantly on issues of the games press and its decaying relationship both to the industry proper, and its audience. His recent post in Penny Arcade from a couple of weeks back had this quote:
Having been the cowering creature beneath enthusiast media’s Eye of Sauron on more than one occasion, the object of their tender ministrations, their ostensible populism and their eerily synchronized perspective, I have no sympathy for these creatures. Which is to say, I have the same sympathy they express for those outside their cloister. You may feel very confident that there are conversations at every publisher now, wondering to what extent they are required to eat shit from these people.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Nick McCrea on 28th November 2015 4:22pm

2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 3 years ago
So you are for freedom of speech used for intimidation as long as it comes from your side?
Depends on what the "intimidation" is.

If it's along the lines of, "I feel intimidated because I was told someone will come and do physical harm to me if I continue to say such things," then, no, I don't think that should fall under freedom of speech.

If it's along the lines of, "I feel oppressed and intimidated by articles and blog posts from feminists that are putting forward views I don't agree with," well, that's your problem.
do we agree with that, that games with female sexual appeal should not be released to the western audience
Let me make this clear again: I believe very, very strongly that, at this point, anybody who wants to release a game like DOA Xtreme 3 to a western audience should be free to do so. (I really thought you were on my side on this.) And as far as I can tell, they are.

I'm trying to figure out what you want here. You're clearly upset by people exercising their free speech to say they don't like certain things. You seem to be saying that there's some sort of systematic societal bias occurring here that's making you feel bad. But now you're just reiterating the arguments of feminists and similar groups, but fifty years behind them. So why is it that it's bad now when it wasn't bad then? Just because it's now you feeling oppressed rather than women or non-white people or whatever?
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
You're clearly upset by people exercising their free speech to say they don't like certain things.
Heh. If you knew the service I have created, you'd know how silly that sounds, and how wrong you are.
You seem to be saying that there's some sort of systematic societal bias occurring here that's making you feel bad.
Your ability to not address my actual arguments and go with your emotions is uncanny.

CTRL+F "rock", find my post where I mentioned rock and roll. My point is pretty clear in that post, with lots of analogies. Feel free to address any of my arguments instead of posting how you feel about my feelings.
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 3 years ago
Robert, I did address your "argument." In my very first post, I told you that you were making up straw men, such as, "Anita's message has been precisely that developers should not make games like Dead or Alive." (Opening a discussion about whether making such games may not be a good thing is not the same thing as coming out and saying they should be banned.) You completely ignored that. And even if she said they should be banned, so what? Should people not be allowed to say such things?

What, precisely, do you want Sarkeesian to stop saying, and why? Please point out the actual speech you think she's doing harm with, rather than making up things. Or let's start with our agreement that what Sarkeesian is saying is fine, and work from there. Your choice.

This whole discussion has been crippled by people one one side, excuse my French, "making s--t up." They claim, for example, that DoA wasn't released due to oppression by the matriarchy or whatever, not just in the face of no solid evidence, but even evidence to the contrary. (One excellent way to keep the game out of the spotlight in the West would be not to create an English version. Yet they spent extra money to do so, and continue to distribute a version that works in English even though their ostensible markets are arguably the least English-speaking nations in the world.)

I'm not saying intimidation doesn't go on via speech on the Internet, but I think that clear death threats and the like are the place we want to start railing against it, not situations like this that a) could just as well be a marketing stunt as any actual intimidation, and b) where the value of the game is actually a reasonable point for discussion. (Though I'm sure certainly people here will take that second part as me saying, "ban it now!")

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Curt Sampson on 30th November 2015 11:40pm

4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robert Mac-Donald Game Designer, Lethe Games3 years ago
(Opening a discussion about whether making such games may not be a good thing is not the same thing as coming out and saying they should be banned.) You completely ignored that.

I've addressed that in more than 1 post
And everything else you have asked me is addressed on the post I mentioned rock music, that I asked you to read on my last reply.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 3 years ago
https://twitter.com/koeitecmoeurope/status/671690313912598528

Essentially, the community rep's views don't represent KT.

Soooooo...

"intimidation" and "censorship", right?

To be fair, I don't think GI did a lot to help this by posting the barest minimum of "facts" regarding the story. But *shrugs* guess you got to go elsewhere for in-depth news stories about gaming.
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Robin Clarke Producer, AppyNation Ltd3 years ago
Why is this comment thread still here?
5Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.