I hope my smile can distract you
I hope my fists can fight for two
So it never has to show

And you’ll never know

I hope my love can blind you
I hope my arms can bind you
So you’ll never have to see
What we’ve grown to be

One may think we’re alright
But we need pills to sleep at night
We need lies to make it through the day
We’re not ok

One may think we’re doing fine
But if I had to lay it on the line
We’re losing ground with every passing day
We’re not ok

But that’s one thing
I would never
One thing I would never
That’s one thing
I would never say to you

 

Always a Feminist Issue

Ezrik shared something with me, which was… both hilarious and upsetting.  We have this sort of mutual friend — though I don’t talk to him much, if at all in the last year, and who annoys me — who I’ll just call Pandaman for the sake of things, and he was upset that some game on Steam was tagged with ‘female protagonist.’

Pandman:…So, just saw a game on Steam tagged with “Female Protagonist.” Fucking sexist women, labeling that game. (Ezrik asks how it’s sexist) Focusing on her gender.  That doesn’t make the game any different just cause the protagonist is a woman. Puts undue amount of attention on gender when there’s no need. Now I gotta go and label all the games with guys as protagonist as “Male Protagonist”, since apparently that matters.

Direct quotes from the conversation, though with mere indicators of Ezrik’s replies.

I think the funniest part is how he seems to think because games aren’t labeled male protagonist it means that they’re not being represented — or less that and more that he feels pointing out females means we’re trying to make them more important…. which is true, we are.  We’re trying to make it so that females can be more predominant in roles in games; hell, if we could get so far as labeling all forms of representation it’d let people find games in which they feel they could have some investment.

But no, Pandaman thinks that women wanting to have a bit of representation is somehow sexist because men don’t label their games ‘male protagonist‘.  He doesn’t seem to realise that you don’t HAVE to label games that way as the majority of games are featuring a male lead.  Hell, even in the Zelda series (in which the titular character isn’t even the protagonist) it’s pretty much a Link game instead, hence all the ‘Zelda’s a cool dude’ meme jokes.

In his attempt to call something sexist though, he also made a sexist assumption that women were the ones labeling it as female protagonist, because no male could ever care that a female was a lead in a game because men are dudes and dudes are bros and fuck feminism /tips fedora.

Ezrik has grown a lot since I first met him and made the points I would, before the conversation got stupid and he just let the point go, it was as follows:

Ezrik: They specifically label female protagonists because in 85% of games, it’s men who are the ‘hero’ of the story. And females are mainly used as a sort of sex symbol, or some kind of prize to be won.
Ezrik: And not everybody wants to play that kind of stuff.
Pandaman: …That doesn’t make it any less of a sexist issue. If you really want equality, you can’t go making either gender singled out or made special.
Ezrik: If gender equality were an actual thing, then they wouldn’t have to label it.
Pandman: But by labeling it, they are furthering the issue.

If you really want equality, you can’t go making either gender singled out or made special.”  Well, exactly, I couldn’t have said it better myself, but as the role in games (even with the current influx if some female fronted games it’s still the vast minority) is predominantly male, they are represented far harder than the female demographic.  If you break that down further, even in most female fronted games they’re straight white women, or gay white women, and therefor STILL not even coming close to breaking the issues we have with representation.

But with every guy who thinks that ‘meninist‘ is a thing, or that feminism is about misandry — the two are mutually exclusive, by the way — we fall five steps back from people feeling comfortable about these things.

This isn’t to say that everything made by a female or a minority is inherently good because of that, but it does mean that they shouldn’t be immediately shunted into the trash chute because someone doesn’t feel comfortable that they’re trying to have their voice heard.  How dare those radical feminists label their games female protagonist so other girls in games can put themselves in the shoes of someone they want to, if that’s their comfort.  By that logic no games should have any labels or marketing period because you’re bringing too much of the ‘issue’ to the forefront.

One last gem, I promise.

Pandaman: It’s kinda like how Taylor Swift has haters, and by making a song saying she doesn’t care, she earned MORE haters.

It wasn’t about getting the haters to leave her alone, that’ll never happen, it’s about trying to teach girls that you can stand up for yourself, have these feelings and issues, and if haters exist… let them.  Let them sit on their cushions and rage at you for being you, but have the guts to stand up for yourself and be unapologetic about your voice; let yourself be heard and don’t let the haters stop you.

Bring it on, haters, equality is something worth getting shit on for.

P.S. In editing/formatting this I noticed that originally I typed Male Protagonist, yet always typed female protagonist.  It’s a weird little note but it’s sort of indicative of the deeply ingrained issues that come from shit like this.

90s JRPG problems

© Konami

I’m just going to leave this here as a reminder that they redid the cover for Suikoden for the US release and I picked it up based on that horrifying cover that is really not indicative of how good it is.  I don’t know why the left wasn’t good enough, but eeeeeeh.

Legally Grey

Preface: This is in no way considered legal advice or even condoning anyone else doing these things, merely an opinion of one gamer on the ludicrous nature of how legality plays into these things.

There’s something to be said for things that are technically considered illegal but… shouldn’t be?

Emulation to me makes sense for games that are no longer in production, but as far as I’m aware of there is a legal line there that’s crossed when you go for it.  The problem is, some of the games I want to emulate I sure as hell own they just aren’t within arm’s reach right now and it makes it difficult to play the proper copy.

My biggest issue with the huffing about emulation is that most people who are going for emulation aren’t doing it for new games that are sitting on shelves in droves, but for games that don’t exist anymore or would cost a fortune from some private collector in which the dev’s would never see a penny for anyway.

Not to mention that, sometimes, filling the gaps you have had in a series will inspire you to pay money for new titles within that series coming out — such as me with the Tales games — and can sometimes inspire players who never got to futz with them before to fall in love with and end up building a collection of games and official merchandise around.

I do pay for games — and I really do, and have an active subscription at a rental service which also is fairly legal — but sometimes it’s impossible to find the games you want because of them being dated or the systems themselves being dated, and the idea that you don’t want people experiencing these masterpieces because you’re afraid you’ll miss out on some dough is ridiculous. The worst part being that most of the time it’s not even the developers causing these issues but the companies and resources they went through to get their game to the public.

That being said, if you do end up pulling some emulation out of your arse and end up enjoying it, do try to buy some merchandise or the game itself, for the sake of the company continuing to make games, and in the case of failed series/halted series or companies that no longer exist… write a review and let ’em know what they did do was appreciated.  Even if it’s just a little something.

… I want more Suikoden games.

Artistic Expression (though not mine)

Mayuri Kotonoha

Art © Tovio Rogers

I’ve had a rough twenty-four hour period, and I am understanding that it is not as rough as some have had and even in the scheme of people experiencing the exact same feeling, mine is probably less valid because of circumstance, but it doesn’t make it any less assy.

The night before, I was in a stream with my good friend Tovio Rogers ( dA/FB/tumblr/twitter)as he was drawing up art like above for 15$ (this is not his usual rate, these are more stress release stream commissions, he is easily worth his regular rates though so hit him up) like a maniac, and kept deferring people to go ahead of me so they could see their art drawn live — everyone should get to do that once and it’s fairly amazing so I don’t mind waiting — and ended up getting mine the next day (which was last night.)

As he was finishing up another friend of mine’s piece, my boyfriend and I sort of mutually decided to call it for now, it wasn’t fair to him — or to me, as he says — that he wasn’t ready to be in that sort of relationship while I was very much ready and in love with him.  So I went from slight giddy to completely destroyed in moments.

There’s no hard feelings towards my ex, I’m just sad to have lost what I had, though I realise he and I will continue to be friends and someday — and yes I understand how toxic that sounds but it’s really not — it might work out.  We are what we are and we can only be honest.

It hasn’t changed that feeling of utter disappointment and crushing self-defeat I always feel when something crumbles in my hands, but I’m adult enough to know that if you love someone, especially enough to say that you were in love with them, acting like you can just let them go because the kissing portion of your relationship is over is ridiculous.

I’m an adult and I have adult relationships, but childish reactions to the end of them, in which I’m crying and snotty and completely and utterly broken.  I don’t think you ever really outgrow that feeling, either.  You will always sort of fall apart if something was worth having… it’s not like it was every time someone fucked me over in the past, when I was crying out of anger, it was literally mourning a piece of something that was now dead comparatively to the actual livelihood of our continued friendship.

That being said, I went from not knowing just what I wanted for Mayuri — my Au Ra OC from Final Fantasy XIV — to knowing that I wanted her drawn sad, and then in the Thavnairian Bustier… upon seeing the art Tovio did of her, I’m going to make some stylistic changes to her appearance to better match this art as she’s exactly what I wanted.

Sometimes an artist knows what you want better than you do, and because Tovio and I are good friends and he’s done so much art for me, he knew exactly what to do for me, and how to make my sadness into something beautiful.

Total Artgasm.

Wenk Wenk