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Submitted on
June 11


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Now that the E3 dust has started to settle we can focus on some of the stuff that happened earlier this week in more detail.

Ubisoft Bullshit
When asked about why there was no female playable assassin in the upcoming Assassin’s Creed game, Ubisoft made the bad decision to try and justify it. They said that a female assassin was planned, but that they didn’t have the resources to implement it because it would’ve require too much extra work and “business is business” after all.

I call bullshit on that. It’s been well known that adding a female character to a game doesn’t increase the budget much (if at all), and many of the same animations and actions can be applied to both male and female characters. Even Jim Sterling addressed this issue (2 years ago) by asking people in the industry how “hard” it is to add female character models and the answer is... not hard at all really:…

To add more fuel to the fire, Johnathan Cooper (animation director of Assassin’s Creed 3) and Dan Lowe (senior tech animator on Watch Dogs) both chimed in over on twitter about how absurd Ubisoft’s “claim” was, both stating that not only would it have only been about a day or two’s worth of work, and that female mocap is virtually indistinguishable from male mocap.

And for a game about the French Revolution, a revolution that women played a very significant role in, it’s pretty pathetic to be handed 4 playable white male characters and not a single female in the roster. So either Ubisoft had no intentions and were lying to try to reduce backlash, they decided women wouldn’t play the game so no need to add one, or that someone purposefully removed the female protagonist halfway through development for seemingly no reason. No matter how you slice it, Ubisoft’s bullshit excuse can’t stop us from seeing through their smoke-screen.

Nintendo’s Inclusivity Bullseye
And this is the other story that’s circulating right now. Nintendo showcased more playable female characters in one game than most of the other big corporations had combined. Nintendo is, at the moment, leading the pack with female protagonists and characters.

And this... my friends... is why representation is important.

There was such a want from fans, such a desire to have more women in gaming, that THIS is one of the bigger stories going on right now. It doesn’t matter if some of the female characters are questionable sexual icons (such as Bayonetta), the fact that there are women AT ALL is making headlines. It’s all anyone’s talking about of E3 at the moment.

The roster is pretty diverse too. Zelda, Midna, and Impa in Hyrule Warriors. The cutesy squid paint characters of Splatoons! The possible addition of a female link in the upcoming Wii-U Zelda title (more on that later). Bayonetta sporting Nintendo themed cosplay costumes. The incredibly diverse list of female characters in Smash Bros which now includes Kid Icarus goddess Palutena. And the ability to pick a female protagonist for the upcoming Xenoblades sequel. Ya gotta hand it to them... they found an underserved market and they FILLED it. Kudos Nintendo!

Inclusivity is not a bad thing, and it’s when game developers and artists and writers start EXCLUDING people that they usually run into trouble. Ubisoft excluded women from being playable characters and tried to fib their way through it, and that’s pissed people off. Meanwhile Nintendo has said “here’s a ton of female characters, have fun everyone!” and that’s making positive headlines. And inclusivity doesn’t mean “forcing” people to play as stuff they don’t want to play. In pretty much every one of Nintendo’s games it’s a CHOICE that you decide. Don’t wanna play as a woman? Fine. Don’t. But at least the option is there for people who do. And given how much press this is getting, a lot of people DO!

”No One Said That Was Link”
That’s what Aonuma said about the title character in the open world Wii-U Zelda game they showcased. And there’s a lot of little hints to back up that it might not have been link.

The lack of a master sword. The ponytail. The very androgynous features. The presence of a crossbow (which is usually Zelda’s signature weapon). The unusually un-Link like attire. The different colored Epona. For all those reasons, plus Aonuma’s cryptic statement, a lot of fans have been speculating on Zelda being the main protagonist this time... or at the very least a female character of some sort taking up Link’s mantle.

I’m actually just hoping at the very least they’re going a Skyrim route where you’re able to pick a gender to play as. I don’t mind if it’s Zelda, a female Link, or an entirely new character. Just give us the OPTION, Nintendo. And please... don’t keep us waiting on explaining your cryptic response. It’s only going to foster false hope if it just ends up being a very effeminate Link.

Can we just take a moment and appreciate that Nintendo is essentially making a family friendly shooter with a unique gameplay mechanic (squids and paint) and prominent female protagonists? I didn’t know what to think about this title when I first saw it, but now that it’s had time to sink in a bit I’m really onboard with it. The designs are cute, the gameplay idea interesting, the colorful non-violent nature a gem in sea of gritty brown desaturated shooters, and it just looks FUN to play.
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - Shatter Me
  • Reading: Superman/Shazam: First Lightning
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: The Legen of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
  • Eating: Cheeseburgers
  • Drinking: Hot Coco
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narutoxz Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2014  Student Filmographer
I don't wanna start shit, but...
COME ON. COME ON. Just because Ubisoft didn't put a female in their game everyone jumps their ass, thinking they are the worst people ever. For some reason, in GTA V, there is a part that is sexist towards women, yet no one jumped on their dick. Sexism is "prejudice or discrimination based on a person's sex or gender. Sexist attitudes may stem from traditional stereotypes of gender roles and may include the belief that a person of one sex is intrinsically superior to a person of the other." Games can't really discriminate others unless it's straight up, in your face (in my opinion). And on another point, they are just GAMES. Games weren't made to comply to your beliefs, they were made for the enjoyment. There are probably a thousand women that would play a game with just guys in it, and a thousand guys that would play a game with just women in it. I could not care less if from now on, for all eternity, video games just had women. I just want a story that applies to the characters. And plus, women have been in video games for a long time. There is a equal number of male gamers and female gamers. Hell, I think they outnumber us by a few. But I don't care.
LGSM1996 Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2014  Student Filmographer
i would like to see more chicks in games too and i do agree it wouldn't be that hard but your wrong to say that it would require no extra work, cause in my experience of making 3d models of females compared to males women require more polygons for areas around the breasts, hips and since women tend to wear their hair longer thats just adds to it, and cause of the extra polygons you need more texture space which makes adding them to games a bit harder cause when it comes to games you need to keep polygons and textures space down to a minimal where as men tend to be easier to make cause they have less curves smaller hips no boobs and tend to have shorter hair so there's less work and you can get away with alot of cheapness, but in saying all this the next gen consoles with there insane ram and graphics cards just shits all over the keeping polygons low and texture space to a minimal thing. 
LordStephen Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Having more female characters in games is great. I agree with you on the fact that there's not really much of a cost to add an extra character to the game, that does virtually everything the male character does too, the fact that they said "it takes to much time & work" is bs.

I would like to point out however, that I believe a game should have a female character if it is how the story should be told. Skyrim's great because you get to create a character and the programmers insured that the NPC's would register male or female, and I don't think games that allow character creation should refuse the player the ability to choose male or female. I feel that if the story of the game is supposed to focus on a female who's having trouble with something (whether it be a bad guy or just life problems in general) it shouldn't have a male character as the playable character. A lot of people will read books and watch TV and movies and if there's a female as the main character not a lot of people have problems. And there are TV shows where the men are the main characters and plenty of people don't have problems with it. To try and force an equal amount of women in our entertainment industry to that of men is a bad idea I believe.

I'm not saying that we can't have women in TV, movies or games or such, but I feel that it should be dependent on the story. If it works better with a woman in mind then it should work. In fact I don't think the Tomb Raider series would actually have the same impact that it does now if it had a male character instead. That being said, Halo has a male character and I don't believe that it would have the same impact if it was a female character. However Halo has Cortana, so there is a female in there and I believe she's done an amazing job at helping the story along, I just feel that the impact of a male or female character in a game is determined by the story rather than 'who do we plan on selling to' or 'how do we get more people of a certain gender to play' scenarios.

I have noticed though that some games do well with people of both genders. An example of this is Left 4 Dead. I don't think it would have been as fun without the female character in there to help balance out the survival group. Games that allow for gender selection I think are great (see pokemon) because you get to personalize your game experience and you're able to relate to the characters when you do that. I know that a lot of people do want to introduce more female characters to games, but I think they should be focusing on the story and character abilities to determine whether or not a female character should be used instead of a male one. This will keep the game fun, interesting and easy to understand, rather than to throw in the fact that the character is male when it should've been female, or vice versa. I've seen a few games that didn't make sense because the developers changed something at the last minute. I know Nintendo's done that a couple of times with their games, and when you play them, you can very much tell that it just doesn't have the same flow as previous games in the series.

I also do not believe that every girl should be the frail and dainty girls that we had in the old black and white films. I love the Zelda series because starting with Ocarina, Zelda's been more and more of a badass and helping Link with something. Usually the light arrows or whatnot, but I feel that Zelda is a very powerful character. I think the tone of the game/story also helps to determine the PC gender. Super Mario Bros. is supposed to be lighthearted and silly whereas Zelda, they're a bit darker and a little more realistic. Looking at Left 4 Dead, I believe if an apocalyptic setting like that were to occur, I doubt that the group would be solidly male. That being said, in a scenario like that I do believe that there should be a few male only groups as well as a few female only groups, just because of location and who you know.

As for team ups, a good example of a guy/girl team up can be found in Appleseed with the two main characters being badass on the battlefield. Again I think it should be about the story and not the, who are we trying to gain, scenario. Those are my thoughts really.
villamar Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014
Uh... I know it wasn't a 50/50 but there's always been girl in games. Even in fighting games like Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat and such.
MojoLiazon Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2014  Professional General Artist
It's a good smokescreen from Nintendo to redirect attention away from their non-response to the fact that a lot of their production relies on child slave labor. There's been some large petitions about it but Nintendo has resolutely refused to address the issue.
AllVideosOwn Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2014  Student Writer
That's entirely and completely a rumor and perhaps Nintendo not feeding the trolls is a good thing.
MojoLiazon Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2014  Professional General Artist
It's not a rumor. When Nintendo is asked directly about the subject and declines to respond, that's as factual as it gets.
ciela101 Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Actually, Aonuma confirmed that was actually Link in the trailer...a very feminine and pretty one, yes, but still Link
TBoneTony Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2014
I would love to play a female link in a zelda game,

in fact, I had been pondering having a fanfiction part of a story where Link gets turned into a girl just to be able to get into the Gerudo Valley fortress. 
CKninjaboy Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I find it funny that I didn't even have to go to the full journal page to guess who posted this...
Not gonna bother reading it :T
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