The Creepy Cull of Female Protagonists

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JIMQUISITION

In the video linked above as “JIMQUISITION” Jim Sterling talks about a recent development in video games regarding an attempt by game developers of the above pictured game; ‘Remember Me’ to find a publisher for their game that they are currently in development of. Jim continues in the video saying how when the developers searched for a publisher they had to fight tooth and nail to make a game with a female protagonist. This was because as some [unnamed] publishers put it: “Well, we don’t want to publish it because that’s not going to succeed. You can’t have a female character in games. It has to be a male character, simple as that.” This means, as Jim Sterling says, that players don’t want female lead characters in video games and, “Even worse, the game industry doesn’t want female characters that exist as human beings.” In the game Remember Me the directors wanted to give the main protagonist an actual life with her being in a relationship with a man. As Jim mentions in the video when he thought about it there weren’t many situations where women in video games where involved in any kind of physical relationship with a man and when they were it was from the point of view of the man. This was because it would be “awkward” for men playing the game. In the video Jim Sterling calls this treatment of women in video games by the video game industry creepy and sexist as shit, because allowing women to be in video games and be sexy with large busts for male players to enjoy but not allowing women to engage in any sort of relationships fits with the literal definition of objectification as the video games are almost quite literally making women into objects. Recently in-fact with the game Bioshock Infinite the female character that plays a prominent role in the story and game-play of the game was removed from the front of the game’s boxart cover and moved to the back.

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Before

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After

As you can see the character Elizabeth was removed from the cover of Bioshock Inifinte. In the video it was suggested that this move was made due to market research made by the company before release of the game but with moves like this and the recent troubles with the game Remember Me, is the Game Industry making the right effort in trying for sexual equality in video games? Or is the industry still using a predominately a male minded frame in designing and marketing video games that perpetuates these male dominated controlling images.

 

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2 thoughts on “The Creepy Cull of Female Protagonists

  1. Thanks for discussing the “Remember Me” video–you do a fine job of connecting the opposition to a female protagonist to sexism and objectification of women. The Bioshock cover is such a clear example of symbolic annihilation. Good analysis.

  2. Pingback: An Unforgotten Heroine Fights to Reclaim Her Memories in REMEMBER ME | stationdeva

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