Running the Asylum

Adventures in being a Guildleader

Being human

Something I’ve noticed as people on forums I frequent go round and round about the disparity between male and female in the gaming world is that when we talk about the people playing the games we are very us vs. them.  “They” are the rude, abusive assholes.  “They” are the enemy.  “They” are bad people.

They are human too.  Maybe not as enlightened, maybe not as evolved, but they are still humans who can think and feel.  They may not be people we enjoy associating with, and they may not be the sterling examples of humanity we wish to hold up to the world to show the people who do not game that we are good people who think and feel and show compassion, but they are people just like us.  They are our shadow selves, the dark corners of our collective identity as gamers.

“Fake gamer chick” wouldn’t be a thing if we did not allow it to be.  If there were not women who deliberately sought out the trappings of gamer culture and turned it into sexually objectifying memes, and if there were men who did not let them objectify their guild members and friends in such a way, it would not be discussed.  It would be dismissed with the same level of scorn as people who wear those “Nice story” shirts (which I loathe like poison, by the way). 

Yes, I have probably been gaming longer than most of the people spewing abuse behind anonymous gamer tags.  I am well aware of the under-representation of strong females in gaming.  Samus Aran was the first strong woman to be featured as a main character.  Kings Quest IV featured a self-rescuing princess.  Rosa, Tera, Celes – eight and sixteen-bit badasses.  Lara Croft, with her triangle boobs, kicked butt and took names.  The Final Fantasy franchise has featured tons of strong women over the decades.

All of this is beside the point of this post.

We, the gamers who are feminists, feed the cycle by demonizing the ignorant cowards who spew abuse and sexist memes.  They too are human.  We do not know why they think it is acceptable to abuse other thinking, feeling, sapient and sentient creatures the way they do.  We cannot speak to the depths of self-loathing such behavior indicates. 

Perhaps we hate them so because they remind us of our own inner demons, the little voices that tell us we are “weird” or “live in a fantasy world” or “don’t have a life” or “can’t get laid” or whatever our fears are.  Perhaps if we confronted our own issues, they would be less of a problem.

Who knows? 

I pity them.

 

Girls Not Allowed

Girls Not Allowed

An article via a friend of a friend discussing parity in gaming/toys.  Important this time of year, as those of us with children in our lives evaluate the offerings.

Losing a founder

Losing a founder

So I wrote this thing to eulogize the reason I’m in a position to write this blog.  I apologize if it makes people cry.

On “white knights” – Reblogged from Consensual Hallucinations

On "white knights"..

This eloquent discussion on feminism and the male gamer was written by my good friend Craig Schaefer. He brings up some excellent points and I applaud him for choosing to do so.

Read this blog post, then go be a better human being.

Gaming Community: We Need to Talk (Again)

More relevant thoughts on sexism in gaming. Seriously, this shit needs to stop. The sex of a reviewer doesn’t matter, nor should race, gender identity, or anything else.

D. A. White

Warning: the following post contains extreme language and poor examples of humanity.* Your sense of decency and any hope for the human race might be challenged. You have been warned.

Gaming community, you have been bad.

We need to talk about your reactions to reviews, specifically the Grand Theft Auto V review from Gamespot.

It's only going to get worse from here on.

To give some background on this, GTA V, the latest in one of the biggest gaming franchises ever, recently came out. Gamespot, like all the other major gaming outlets, ran a review that came out before the game, and the reviewer, Carolyn Petit, gave it a mostly enormously positive review. She said, “Grand Theft Auto V is an outrageous, exhilarating, sometimes troubling crime epic that pushes open-world game design forward in amazing ways,” and then gave it a 9/10.

Now, honestly, if you are at all familiar with video game reviews, you should know…

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This being: GIRL = Guy in real life

I play female characters. Exclusively. I am a woman. My guild is full of women who also play female characters. Please stop making this assumption.

I get pissed off EVERY TIME I see this meme, because it invalidates my existence.

A creator’s gratitude

While I could not sleep last night, it occurred to me that I owe a great deal to the face I wear online.  Euryale Kyr’Eris has become more than a simple construct, an arrangement of ones and zeroes hidden behind pixels and a GUI.  She is a mirror, a proving ground for my personal spirituality, and a check on my destructive tendencies.  She has been there through the worst moments of my life and sustained me.  She is a mask I can wear when I am tired of or frightened by being Noelle.

Noelle spends a lot of time being anxious or afraid in her day-to-day life.  Euryale, while she may also be anxious or afraid in a given situation, is also sure of herself.  She knows that whatever might come, so long as she holds true to her ethics, she will survive and eventually resume thriving.  She knows who she is, something her player still struggles with.

I am grateful that she allowed me to bring her into being and walk along this author’s path beside her, letting her tell me her story as it unfolds.  She surprises me with how she reacts sometimes.  I expect her to behave as written, yet she does or says something utterly out of character – or so I thought.  Always, in retrospect, she is right and I should simply record her as she is instead of trying to second-guess her…and my own instincts.

There is a lesson there.  I’m sure my creation is not done teaching me all there is to know about myself.  I look forward to the learning.