This Video is Devoid of Context (A response to ONE)

You know what I hate – videos that start with one thing and decide that they are going to completely nix that concept and instead focus on whatever pet project they are going to go after.  Today it is the idea that women in the third world are poor because men have all the jobs.  Oh, but rather than talk about that, their video that is supposed to pimp this topic out decides that they are going to focus on First World problems that are so devoid of context and lacking in any reason to care that I am amazed we don’t have a sad violin playing in the background.  I’ll share the video, so none of you can saying I am taking things out of context, and then we’ll break it down.

Alright, so we got some chick in a foreign country just having a baby and asking if it’s a boy.  The doctor says no.  What does that have to do with anything?  Is the idea that this chick in what I presume is a Third World country would rather have a boy than a girl?  What is the argument there?  What is the message?

Next we got some girl who is sitting that naked butt on a stone countertop.  Yeah, that’s already unrealistic.  But she is looking at some pic of a girl who is fat and it says “NO.”  Then she looks at her own slight chub and is all distraught.  I’m sorry, but what’s the point there?  It’s clear this chick is in the First World.  She’s on her smartphone with an electric toothbrush in a house that looks very nice.  Clearly she isn’t living in poverty.  That being fat means you are in poverty?  What?

Next up we got a bunch of Asian people in a conference room and some girl is about to stand up for some reason, and the boss man says “no.”  What’s the context here?  Did she get passed over for a promotion?  Maybe it wasn’t her turn to speak.  Maybe they’re going around the table and it isn’t her turn yet.  Without any context of any kind, we have no idea why “no” was said to her.  What’s the point of this?  That social justice idiots can’t make a point without totally divorcing context from it?

Then there is a little girl in Germany who wants to buy a shirt.  Her mom says “no.”  Why should I care?  When you are a little kid, your parents can tell you that they don’t want you to wear certain clothes.  It sure doesn’t look like fucking Goodwill that they are shopping at, so how is this a point about poverty?  What did this have to do with anything even approaching the title of this video?!

Oh my god, a clip that actually has a point!  We have some girl in some African country being sold off to a man.  Wow, amidst all the women with their First World problems, they actually acknowledge that child marriage is bad.  It is.  I totally agree.  The fact that there are countries that still have this blows my fucking mind.  It kills me that in a video where it is supposed to be representing women in the Third World, it sure is nice that the video FINALLY acknowledges that these women and REAL problems actually fucking exist!

Then we get to some black woman at…somewhere turning in some kind of paperwork and being told “no.”  Um, where was this?  Was that a job application?  Was she applying for a loan?  Is this a bank?  What the fuck is the context there?!  Explain, video!

Oh, and then we have some teenage girl who is on her laptop when she suddenly has an apron put over her and the father figure is having her work while the little brother says “no.”  Since I don’t see a mom, it seems that the dad is the one providing for these two children.  What a horrible person, for having the child that he looks after help him with family chores.  That’s just sexist!  It doesn’t show that she was working on a school paper or something like that, so is the point here that fathers asking their daughters to help around the house is bad?  It’s shit like this that makes people think Millennials can’t handle life.

Alright, then we got some party guy and girl and when the girl doesn’t reciprocate the guy’s advances, he says “no.”  The guy’s a jerk, but I have to ask – what does this have to do with poverty being sexist?  That jerk guys exist?  This video is the personification of “one of these things is not like the other.”  Virtually all of these clips are just feminist talking points and have fuck-all to do with the title of this fucking video.

Now we have some girl in the Third World wanting to go to school, and her mom says “no.”  Why?  Is this in some country where radical Islam has taken root and a girl being in school could potentially have her killed?  If that’s the case, the mother is very right to say no.  Without a single ounce of context, this clip could mean anything.  But at the very least it does tie in to what the video is supposed to be fucking talking about.

The video then fucking ends by saying “none of us are equal until all of us are equal.”  You have got to be fucking kidding me.  90% of this video was stupid First World problems, totally devoid of context, and you are going to make the argument that this showed inequality?  Yeah, it showed one, arguably two places where there is sexism that hurts girls.  And for those places, yeah, I genuinely do think something should be done.  But for the rest of that bullshit, it is just another glowing symbol of how feminism is all about equality, after pushing their talking points and almost completely forgetting the women who actually need help right now.  Way to lose the plot, idiots.

Until next time, a quote,

“I have a question for you, Lord Gilferd – what do you do when there is an evil you cannot defeat with just means?  Do you stain your hands with evil, or do you remain steadfast and just, even when it means surrendering to evil?” – Lelouch vi Britannia, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion

Peace out,

Maverick

Advertisements

Stop Using Ignorance of the Medium to Sell Your “Journalism” (A response to Polygon)

People who can take this publication seriously baffle me.  How?  How can anyone read what they write and not go “this is totally slanted shit”?  These people clearly are incapable of discussing this medium in anything resembling objective way.  They can only write articles espousing opinions about stuff and showing off that they have no real understanding of the medium in which they are writing about.  That’s what this is.  Another article written by someone who doesn’t get how vidya works, and has to also shit on the sequel to one of my favorite games in the process.  It seems that Polygon decided to take a crack at the newest trailer for The Last of Us: Part 2.  It’s a pretty awesome trailer.  We have some violent people doing horrible things in the fallen world, with some characters we haven’t met before fighting back.  It made me want to know more.  I’m really hoping for gameplay footage and a release date soon.  But Polygon had other issues with it.  Here’s a link to their stupid article, let’s talk about it.

Bones bludgeoned with hammers. A noose wrapped tightly around a struggling woman’s neck. The blade of a knife pressed into a vulnerable stomach. The gruesome imagery Naughty Dog manages to cram into a five-minute trailer for The Last of Us Part 2 is physically uncomfortable to sit through.

Only if you never played through the first game, Julia Alexander.  For those of us who know this series, we saw how in the world of The Last of Us, humanity had descended into madness.  An infection making fungus zombies has wiped out most of humanity and those that are left are tribal and destructive.  It’s a game where the central theme is the last spark of humanity in characters, and how those who are able to maintain that goodness die while those who eschew goodness to survive live.  It’s a cold and tragic story about characters who all have to make a choice to abandon their humanity in order to live.  So for me, I can watch that and think – wow, this is hardcore.  What is the story with these characters?  I am really interested.

The victims of the vicious assault, two women, are unnamed. It’s not clear why we’re watching two people be tortured, but we’re asked to take in the extreme violence under the assumption that we’ll be rewarded with more information for doing so. That information never comes, however, and all we’re left with is residual nausea.

Is all this person has played is Mario games?  Does she even know about the first one?  I would love to see her reaction during the scene in the restaurant in the first game where Ellie is savagely beaten and the implication is that after David is done beating her, he is going to rape her.  If you aren’t aware of what kind of trailer this is, don’t watch it.  Go back to phone games or Nintendo’s cookie-cutter material.

A trailer is a pitch to its audience of what to expect from the full game. In the past, Naughty Dog’s trailers have captured a particular mood or suggested a compelling relationship. But here, the promise is almost exclusively gore. There’s an argument to be made that the trailer raises an enticing question — Why are these women being attacked? — but that mystery is both too familiar and too broad.

What?!  What the fuck does that even mean?!  Too familiar and too broad?  And exclusively about gore?  There was hardly any gore in there!  We saw a girl’s arm get busted with a hammer.  Brutal, but not gory.  But what does too familiar and too broad mean?  That’s fucking word salad.  It’s done by a person who wants to make their point seem really profound, when the truth is that it is just them not wanting to say “I don’t like it!  And my opinion is all that matters about this!”

Without any context, the trailer fails to introduce (or even really tease) the story players will embark on. That is its problem.

I guess Julia has never heard of world-building before.  You know, a scene in something to set the tone for what kind of world this story takes place in?  Is this a totally revolutionary thing to her?

The fact that their antagonist is a woman herself does little to undercut what this trailer is on its most blunt level: an extended sequence of brutal and unexplained violence against women being used to thrill the viewer, and ultimately, sell a video game.

Did Anita Sarkeesian write this with a pen name?  Yes, because gamers just love to watch women get beaten and hurt.  That’s totally all this was about.  Give me a fucking break.  This trailer was setting a tone, dumbass!  The tone is – this world is violent and unforgiving.  Even women who are beefcakes like the woman being hung can’t escape the reality of what a violent world it is.  There was meant to be some thrill to the players, because we have seen this world before and we are meant to now be excited to see it again because it’s clear that the violence in what’s left of humanity society hasn’t gone away.  The lesson here is – themes are too complicated for feminists.

There’s a difference in how Naughty Dog handled the trailers for The Last of Us and The Last of Us Part 2. In The Last of Us, Joel may be gunning down hunters, but we understand why he’s doing it, and those he’s attacking aren’t women or marginalized people. The trailer is violent, but it’s justified; none of that justification exists in The Last of Us Part 2’s trailer, where violence simply exists.

Oh my god!  It’s almost like this trailer was trying to inform the viewers that the world of this game is violent and harsh and unforgiving.  And it doesn’t matter what your gender or skin color is.  You can be brutally beaten and killed all the same.  Themes, mother-fucker!  Are you too dense to get this?  Can you turn the feminism off for five fucking minutes to actually critically analyze something in a way outside of “this is insulting to women and minorities!”?

Providing a trailer with little to no context leads to more questions about how this trailer came to be. How many women were involved in the creation, editing and approval of this trailer? In an industry (and studio) that’s predominantly run by men, did women feel comfortable offering a critique?

And here we get to the meat of her argument, what it all boils down to.  All of this blatant ignorance of what this trailer was trying to do was meant to just be another statement about how sexist gaming is and how there aren’t enough women in it.  Groj, what a complete waste of time.  This article did not substantially say anything.  Just, nothing.  It was just someone who can’t turn off the feminism for long enough to get through the trailer, or if she hates it that much go watch something else.  It’s more SJW bitching because they can’t handle this medium, and Polygon gives her space to do it.  Ugh.

The new Last of Us Part 2 trailer was supposed to introduce new characters, including Yara (and possibly even Ellie’s mom), but all we met were victims of abuse. We met ideas of what women should be in games like this, not actual women.

That is so fucking sexist!  How do people who say this shit not see that?!  All the women in the trailer are is victims of abuse?  So, their personalities and whatever traits we will learn about them in the full game don’t matter?  It only matters that they are living in a violent world and are victims of that violence?!  What a way to totally denigrate them based on your own prejudices.  By that token, I could say that Carol in The Walking Dead is only the victim of abuse from the first season and not acknowledge what an awesome and twisted character she becomes to where we are now.  Or I could say that Diana in the new Hitman is only someone who submissively took intimidation because of the scene on the train where the representative of the organization Providence talked with her and clearly exerted his power over her, without looking at how Diana is a skilled handler and has all the power in the dynamic of her and Agent 47.

How are feminists not able to see how sexist shit like this is?  Unless women are fucking Mary Sues, they are wrong and need to be changed.  Fuck this article.  It’s retarded.  Hey, Neil Druckmann, you said you take what these people say seriously.  They are insulting your game because they can’t theme.  Are you seeing why the rest of us say they’re full of shit?

Until next time, a quote,

“I’m gonna fine and I’m gonna kill every last one of them.” – Ellie, The Last of Us: Part II Reveal Trailer

Peace out,

Maverick

NBC News’ Hit Piece and Characterization of Gamers as Alt-Right

I just love how video games are always the target of the media.  It really is kind of impressive the level of consistency they have in caricaturing gamers as one bad thing or another.  No matter what the big social issue is of any given age, you can be somebody somewhere has decided to make it about video games.  After all, gamers are a very easy to mock lot.  We have a very insular hobby that doesn’t typically preclude socialization.  It’s easy to see people out getting drunk and partying and going “yeah!  They’re really living it up!” and then looking at this other group and going “why aren’t you out doing fun stuff like this?”  Never mind that gaming has become a multi-billion dollar industry that rivals Hollywood.  Granted, a lot of that is built on unsustainable business practices, but let’s not dive too deep into nerd culture.  We’re talking about reactionary idiot culture, after all.

Jack Thompson wanted to make it that video games encourage violence.  Something that was proven demonstrably false.  There has never been any evidence, anywhere, the video games cause violent behavior, or affect how a person acts in real life on any significant way.  Anita Sarkeesian decided to take a crack at saying that video games cause sexism.  Even though it has also been disproven that that is the case.  Before a study from Germany came out that actually did the hard leg work, an easy refutation of her arguments was – if video games cannot cause a person to be violent, how can they cause a person to be sexist?  If one predominately negative behavior has NEVER been demonstrated to exist with gamers, then how does the other one?  Good point.

NBC News decided to take a crack at saying video games are being subtly used to help destroy the good society of regressive-left values.  After all, it’s been shown that the regressive left is all over NBC’s big sister, MSNBC.  Why wouldn’t it filter down into them?  In a new video, they decided to try and make the argument out to be that gaming is secretly helping motivate the alt-right, and how GamerGate was all part of it.  During the video I will share, my biggest wonder was – why did Anita Sarkeesian not give these people an interview?  They certainly are taking cues from her.  Let’s take a look at the video and talk about it.

Even the title of this video is patronizing.  Gamers are facilitating the rise of the alt-right?  Give me a fucking break.  What evidence is there of that contention?  Fuck it, let’s talk about the video.  It opens by saying that Discord is the latest sign of a secret cabal between gamers and the alt-right.  They’re gonna connect the dots for us!  Okay, video, let’s hear it.

Gaming culture has always been racist and sexist?  Wow, that is insulting.  What evidence is there of this?  The fact that gaming is done by people all over the world, of all ethnic groups?  That women and men are able to enjoy the hobby?  Casual gaming is predominately women, with chicks on their phones with phone games.  And the core gaming audience only cares about one thing – skill in the game.  If you are the kind of person who plays online games, which I know is where this video is going.  But what about people like me?  I game for story.  I’m not a racist and sexist.  I’m a misanthrope,  I hate my entire species.  Racism is just more work when I can hate everyone just as well.

Who brought up this little tidbit, anyway?  Emma Vossen, PhD candidate?  Why the fuck do I care what some PhD candidate thinks?  How about getting me a vetted expert in the field with years of research that they can show to demonstrate their knowledge and prove their contentions?  The video tells us that she’s showing how sexism in gaming is being shown in the real world.  This better be good.  Otherwise it will look like they are mining for whatever idiot they can find to prove that they are right.  I’m sure that’s not the case, right…?

The “evidence” for her contention is her “study” that the video says is about how #GamerGate was about harassing women in games journalism.  Um…no, it wasn’t.  At any point.  Let’s ignore all the bullshit lies about what the movement was about.  When all this started with the Zoe Post, it was about Zoe Quinn.  She has never been a games journalist.  When the movement forgot about her because it was more interested in the people who she was fucking and how unethical those people looked, it was five men that were the targets.  Not a single woman.  Then came the torrent of “Gamers are Dead” articles that really kicked things into high gear, along with the censorship of the topics of what at the time was the Quinnspiracy.  Then it became #GamerGate and it was centered around the fact that games journalism was corrupt and that SJW influence had taken complete control over it.  A contention that was completely vindicated in the leaks of the Crash Override Network chat logs.  All of this is easy to verify.  The Internet Aristocrat videos that really blew the situation up are all mirrored on YouTube and easy to find.  The Factual Feminist’s response video to the whole affair is easy to find too.  Disproving this narrative is so fucking simple that it blows my mind, and I’m kind of shocked NBC didn’t see it.  Maybe that’s why this video has a paltry 200+ likes and 20,000+ dislikes.  Makes ya think.

So, GamerGate secured the “alt-right movement.”  Did these idiots not know the first thing about actual research?  This is almost as bad as Hipster McGee on PBS’ short-lived gaming channel.  GamerGate has all kinds of personalities involved with it.  There were people from all different walks of life who were virtually guaranteed to hate each other coming together under one banner – that games journalism is corrupt and pushing a social justice narrative.  What evidence does this “PhD candidate” have?  Oh, right, they show Tweets that are very unpleasant.  Well, that sure does cement that point.  If anything, all of this just shows how pathetic the world of academia’s standards have become when I can Google search and destroy Vossen’s entire premise in under five minutes.  Bravo.

And somehow all of this came to prominence during the 2016 election cycle.  Are you kidding me?!  By 2016, GamerGate was pretty much dead.  You’d see the tag every now and again, but it was pretty much gone.  The idea that this movement that had NOTHING to do with the Presidential election or any kind of politics outside of the gaming sphere was somehow connected to Donald Trump is laughable at best and downright fabrication of facts to support a narrative at worst.  Oh, it influenced the “tactics” of Trump supporters.  What tactics?  Details, woman.  Her argument is that minorities are “fighting for equality” and white men are saying they are oppressed.  To borrow a phrase…

One of these things is not like the other.  One of these things just DOESN’T BELONG!

We then get some quote without knowing if this was from a voice chat during gaming or just some racist asshole being asked a question in an interview.  Yeah, the guy is a racist asshole, but without knowing where this was recorded from, how does this asshole saying shit correlate to gaming culture?  They have an actual quote where a sexist asshole says something rude.  Okay.

Our “PhD candidate” has to clarify that not all gamers are sexist and racist (fucking duh), but the culture overall is sexist and racist.  And they say this while showing a clip from a video game where you play as a killer trying to kill stereotypical slasher characters who happen to be female.  Wow.  That’s so subtle I think it could be taught at a university.  You know, if it isn’t being so already.  I would just love if they showed that with a clip from a game like ABZU or Persona 5 and see how that stacks up.  Wait, that wouldn’t go with the narrative being pushed.  Can’t have that.

Then we get some new guy saying that Discord is the real culprit and the video makes the argument that it went from gamers being online to idiots with tiki torches in the real world.  Not even if we bought into this stupid premise would that make any fucking sense.  They’ve made blanket statements about gamers and how gaming culture is sexist and racist without any verifiable evidence to back it up, and are now making the argument that this somehow led to people on Discord being racist and sexist and becoming alt-right Neo-Nazis.

And that’s all I got on this video.  NBC News, supposedly more straight news than their big sister company, put this on their official YouTube page and expect people to take it seriously.  Thankfully, the Internet didn’t bite.  This video is massively down-voted.  Not even the social justice retards who are all in favor of this crap can support it.  It’s bad argumentation.  It’s slipper slope fallacy.  It’s guilt by association fallacy.  It’s correlation equaling causation fallacy.  It’s stupid.  I’m done.

Until next time, a quote,

“Please end your fucking life!  Please end your fucking life!  I really gotta emphasize, no one cares if you’re alive.” – Pink Guy, STFU

Peace out,

Maverick

If Single Player Games Die, I’m Done

That’s not hyperbole.  Some people say shit like, “I hate this company!  I’m never buying another one of their products again!” even though you know deep-down that they are.  Like every idiot who says “I’m never eating at McDonald’s again!”  Bullshit!  You already debase yourself by eating there.  You’re going again.  Don’t lie to us.  However, for me, this isn’t just some design decision.  This is a personal issue that I refuse to be a part of.

I got into gaming because of how lonely I was, growing up.  I didn’t have many friends, and escaping to fiction was better than real life of being all by myself all the time.  Some of my favorite stories, growing up, were told in video games.  I got lost in the fantasy world of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.  I felt myself captivated by tragic and beautiful narrative in Final Fantasy X.  My youth was all about my best friends and I escaping into fiction.  Later on in my life it was me and my cat.  Her name is Lizzy.  She is extremely old and it’s pretty clear her health is declining.  The parents keep talking about her losing her mind, and while I shrug it off, part of me does wonder.  When I had my big chair, my kitty would sit on the arm.  I’d play games and watch movies and she was always with me.  A loyal friend, whose idea of perishing fills me with genuine pain.

In college, I played the Mass Effect trilogy so many times that I know most of my favorite character’s dialogue by heart!  I got through some unbelievably painful personal moments with those games.  Does this make me sound pathetic?  It wasn’t just games.  My favorite movies, books, TV shows, long walks where I get to look at beautiful things, it all helped me get through horribly difficult times in my life.  But gaming is a big one.

So when I see articles talking about how single-player gaming is going the way of the dodo, it genuinely fills me with a pit inside that I cannot describe.  Here’s the thing – I will NEVER be into multiplayer games.  Moreover, I’ll never be into MMOs.  Why?  Because I game for stories.  Guess what kind of story Destiny had – a shit one.  How about Destiny 2?  That story was shit too.  What about The Division?  Shit.  Or how about all the Call of Duty games?  The last time I enjoyed a narrative from them was Modern Warfare 2.  Hell, even the Assassin’s Creed games are trying to make themselves multiplayer.  It kills me inside.

Now, plenty of people have pointed out all the fantastic single-player only games that have come out lately.  This year has had some real standout examples of the genre.  My favorite game thus far has been Persona 5.  To see a AAA JRPG is something I NEVER believed I’d see in my lifetime.  It’s incredible that such a thing now exists, and it was a massive hit.  All the dates it was pushed back clearly was the right call, because it got everything right.  There was also Horizon: Zero Dawn.  While it has its flaws, it is a unique concept that really put forth the effort to make a different experience.  We also got a truly fantastic remake of Doom, where the biggest lesson the developers got to take away is that people loved it beyond words for the singe player, while hating its multiplayer components.  So there may be hope.

But it does seem like more and more AAA developers wants to move away from that kind of game.  We also have microtransactions seeping their way into single-player games.  This disheartens me for a lot of reasons.  For starters, just think of all the great visions that will be stifled by companies who only want to cater to markets where they can make as much money as they can, all the time.  What kind of gaming market is that setting up?  That’s simple – one that isn’s sustainable.  After all, people move on from games.  How many of the servers for the old CoD games still run?  Are there any servers for EA’s shit-tastic remake of Sim City?  Oh, right, they patched single player in because everyone hated their half-assed excuse for multiplayer.

Part of me thinks that all of this talk is indicative of a medium that can’t sustain itself anymore.  The cost of game development has just gotten so huge that unless they make games that are money-factories, they lose money on making games.  Because after all, you gotta make the most cutting-edge properties all the time, right?  Middle-tier games that may not have the best visuals or maybe have some funky controls or what-have-you, where devs can find ways to experiment and try new things?  Nope!  Can’t have that.  That might involved having the guts to sink money into something and not get it all back.  Because Hollywood refuses to take risks, so why should we?

I will never want to play games for multiplayer.  It doesn’t matter what bullshit the desiccated husks at Bioware put out, I still don’t want it.  EA decided to shit-can Visceral Games and turn their latest Star Wars project into a new Destiny game.  Because why try to make an interesting game when you can make a cash cow that the Star Wars fanboys will cum in their pants for because of the license.  I swear, it’s the only reason EA’s new Battlefront game made any money at all.  Same with why the second will make money.  Because if they can shove the name in your face enough, it’s gotta be good…right..?

So when I say that if single-player in games dies, I’m done, I mean it.  I’ll just collect all the games I loved and will just die off in nostalgia, because what the fuck would I want to play the latest MMO sandbox game?  That’s not why I game.  It will NEVER be why I game.  Desperately hoping I’m not alone in this thought.

Until next time, a quote,

“Words are how we think; stories are how we link.” – Christina Baldwin

Peace out,

Maverick

Let’s Respond to 20 Things Men Can Do to Support Women (according to Medium)

I haven’t done one of these in forever.  After I got through all of BuzzFeed Yellow’s insipid catalog of crap, I haven’t had one of these to do.  Well, a woman who isn’t know for anything outside of being a glorified blogger decided to go to Medium and make another list.  I decided to respond to it and see if I fit the terms of a person who supports women, according to the criteria that she laid out.  Here’s a link to the article, now let’s see how I do.

Overcome your own transphobia. Trans women are women. Trans men are men. Accept the lived truth of NB and GNC people, whether or not they are women.

Nothing to overcome.  I treat people as they come.  I don’t care about trans people any more or less than I don’t already care about anyone else.  I’m a misanthrope.  Granted, I believe in treating all people with basic levels of respect, so long as they treat me in kind.  That seems like a good criteria.  Unless of course that person is Riley J Dennis, in which case she can fuck right off because she is a prick who has the same beliefs about sexual preferences as pray-the-gay-away preachers.  So I got this first one down.  Excellent.

Be pro-choice and be vocal in support of reproductive rights. (And generous! Give to the National Network of Abortion Funds!) Understand that the opposite of reproductive choice is forced childbearing.

I have made donations in the past to Planned Parenthood, which I trust infinitely more than your charity because it is known for the results it gets and the transparency which it operates.  I have always been pro-choice.  Got this one too.  Damn!  I am on a roll!

Support subsidized birth control. Support women’s healthcare. Support women’s preventative healthcare. Support medical trials that include (or even prioritize) women.

I’ll do you one better, cupcake.  Instead of just supporting women’s healthcare, I support universal healthcare.  That way, everyone can have the healthcare they need without worrying if it will put them in bankruptcy.  So I am actually one-upping you here.  Nice!  I think I may be a very good “ally” for women, according to this woman’s criteria.  But I won’t be supporting medical trials that prioritize women.  If it’s for a drug or medical procedure that’s for both genders instead of just being a drug for women, then there’s no reason for me to support prioritizing women.  None.  So you got me there.

Support nontaxed menstrual products. Ask your workplace if tampons and pads are free. If they’re not, advocate for them to be free. Get over any embarrassment you may have about menstruation.

Don’t care about menstruation.  It’s all just biology to me.  As for supporting non-taxed, why would I support a product being given out for free?  Condoms aren’t free.  If it’s a product made by a company, why would I support them not charging money for it?  Companies can have whatever policy they want in regards to selling this stuff, but as for me, I don’t support us just giving shit away to people if it cost money to produce.  So I can’t support this part.  Guess my ally cred is slipping.

Vocally advocate at your workplace for longer and more egalitarian paid parental leave, whether or not parenthood is part of your life. Advocate for lactation spaces. Advocate for on-site or subsidized childcare.

Here’s a question – do you believe this should be applied equally to men.  Some countries have paid paternity leave.  That seems fair.  But here’s the thing – people leaving on maternity leave is an imposition on a company.  I’m not about to sit here and pretend that a corporation whose only concern is making money should just totally wave off the fact that losing an employee to have a kid is a problem for them.  Is that fair?  No.  But it’s the risk women taken when they choose to have children.  I’m sorry, but most women understand that risk when they take that step.

Tell your elected officials that you are a man who votes and you prioritize women’s issues when you decide who to vote for. Then actually prioritize women’s issues when you decide who to vote for. Understand that women’s issues are your issues.

I don’t prioritize women’s issues.  I prioritize issues that affect my life.  Like when my state chose to legalize pot.  I vote in that election.  I voted in the primary for Bernie Sanders, then wrote in Harambe in the general election because I didn’t (and still don’t) support either of those ass-clowns.  If that’s a problem, sorry-not-sorry.  Issues for other women are not necessarily my issues.  I’m not a feminist.  I’m an egalitarian.  In that same election where we voted to legalize pot, I voted to raise the minimum wage because the girl I was dating at the time was making that and I supported that issue.

Whenever you are in a group composed of only men (whether it’s social, work, church, or whatever) ask yourself why there are no women present. Then ask out loud why. Force an honest answer.

I have no groups I am a part of that only have men.  I’m not really a group person.  I don’t believe in Gawd.  My office has a ton of women in it.  My immediate supervisor is a woman, and she is viewed as the mom of the office for being so good at whipping it into shape.  She’s a hell of a woman and has years of status under her belt showing she’s earned her place.  So yeah, this question has no relevance to me of any kind.

Cultivate genuine, intimate, nonsexual friendships with women.

Got a ton of those.  No problem whatsoever.

Seek out women to be your heroes and mentors.

My heroes are George Carlin and H.L. Mencken.  Find me a woman who can compare to them and I’ll let you know what I think.

Any time you see a building, street, institution, etc. named for a man, see how long it takes you to spot another one named for a woman.

What the fuck do I care what a building, street, or institution is named after?  Nothing.  Why do you care?  What effect does this have on your life?

Ask yourself what things you don’t do, for whatever reason, that you also think of as something women tend to do. (Sew? Send birthday cards? Care about skincare?) Try doing it for a while, just to see what it’s like to be a person who does the thing.

I love to cook, I take care of my sad apartment by myself.  I’ve sewn buttons back on clothes.  Went shopping for lotion with a girly-mate and was cool when she bought some for me.  There’s nothing to think about.  What is this idea that all men seem to believe that there are some tasks that only women are supposed to do?  I guess only women can have lesbian sex.  There’s a task.  I found one.  Happy now?

Talk less. In all spaces. At all times. At a lower volume.

Um, no.  So long as I’m not hurting anyone or being rude and interrupting, I’ll do whatever the fuck I want when I’m not at my job.  Don’t assume you have ANY right to tell me how to conduct myself.

When you need support, reach out to men as well as women. Work to be a person your friends of all genders can reach out to when they need support. Create a culture of openness around yourself.

Nobody wants me around when I need support.  See, I’m kind of a negative person suffering from hardcore depression.  However, because of my depression, I keep an open door to all people in my circle of friends who need to talk.  That’s important to me.  Because I am the kind of person who is easy to forget, I will never let anyone in my circle who wants me there to feel they are forgotten.  So got the openness status all locked down.

Consume media marketed to women. Don’t perform your consumption.

I don’t care who media is marketed towards so long as it fits in my view of things I like.  My favorite film of all time is a hardcore love story (5 Centimeters Per Second).  Does that count?  I’ll consume whatever I like.  I like and dislike a lot of things.  My likes and dislikes run the gamut.  But I don’t think about it as something marketed towards women.  I think about it in terms of – do I think this product looks good?  If yes, then I consume it.  It’s why I drink fruity drinks and not whiskey shots.  Why are you working so hard to divide media when you should be taking my approach and encouraging people to create media that is meant to be marketed as broadly as possible?

Deprogram your beliefs about thinness being an optimal state of feminine beauty. Deprogram your beliefs that your desire matters in determining a woman’s worth.

No.  Fuck you.  What I want in a partner is my business.  It’s not yours or anyone else’s.  Same with what you want.  Since I’m bisexual, my desires for men and women are my own.  And yeah, I’m never gonna find a landwhale attractive.  I’m sorry.  I don’t mind women with a few extra pounds.  I like a girl I can eat a pizza with or get a burger and not have her going on about how bad it is.  A totally platonic girly-mate occasionally comes over for dinner and she goes to the gym but also likes the food I make.  I just won’t find attractive a quality in a person that I believe is detrimental.  If someone is eating themselves to death, I find that unappealing.  There’s nothing wrong with that.  Obese has NEVER been the standard of beauty.  It never will.

Jerk off without porn for a while. EDIT: This really should be “Pay for your porn.” In particular, seek out (and pay for) porn that’s made by women, queer people, and people of color, and that’s produced ethically. Consume sexual culture as thoughtfully as you would consume any culture.

I jerk off without porn all the time.  I have a very vivid imagination.  I don’t care who porn is made by.  I care about the content.  Don’t even bother to look into who made something.  It’s almost like I’m just trying to get off and then go about my day.

Learn about racism and intersectionality, and do everything you can to empower and amplify black women and NBWOC.

Not into the social justice scene.  Not even a little.  I fucking hate this victim culture people in the first world have.  So yeah, can’t get on-board with that even a little.

Detach yourself from straw-man definitions for hot-button issues (intersectionality, cultural appropriation, political correctness, preferred pronouns, etc.) and learn what they’re really about. Unpack the real meanings behind phrases like “SJW” and “feminazi.” Believe people when they say they’re in pain.

I have detached myself from straw-man definitions.  See, part of why I respond to posts like these is so I can make sure I don’t leave out context.  For many years I have responded to posts like this and made very clear my disdain for a large swath of people within the social justice community because of the things they say and the ideas they propagate.  So yeah, not gonna get behind this either.

Prioritize kindness.

Decent advice, I guess.

Befriend children.

I hate children.  I will never like children.  The job I have right now is the greatest form of birth control in the universe.  So yeah, never gonna do that either.

All things considered, this was pretty standard feminist advice bullshit for men.  Seen shit like this before on BuzzFeed.  Honestly surprised she didn’t say to stop looking at lesbian porn or something like that, but whatever.  How did I do?

Until next time, a quote,

“I won’t bore you with the details, but after reading these articles I discovered three modes of excuse-making – I mean thinking! – 1. pointless list-making, 2. dumb observations, and 3. overly intellectualizing” – Harry Ass Plinkett

Peace out,

Maverick

Critical Examination: There Doesn’t Need to be a Discussion About Difficulty in Gaming

I recently watched the review of Cuphead by a YouTuber that I find genuinely engaging.  I often have some disagreements with stuff or think some of his perspectives are not the best, but I am not the kind of person who has to agree with everything someone says to like their content.  Contrary to popular opinion, not all of us critics of the regressive left are as bad as the people we criticize.  Some of us actually can deal with disagreement and even have some genuinely lively banter on the subject.  This particular YouTuber and I have actually had very lively debate in the comments section of my own posts where I reference their work.  As a way of helping promote this individual, here is a link to their review of Cuphead, now let’s get to the point.

In the video, he says that there is a genuine discussion that should be had about difficulty in gaming.  This talking point has come about after a frankly hilarious video of a game journalist being oddly incapable of dealing with the tutorial level had this person getting well-deserved ridicule.  There was a guy who is very physically handicapped making a video showing his ability to play the game well.  I’m sorry, but he fucked up, and there’s nothing wrong with making fun of the video that was put out and his butthurt reaction to it.  There is especially nothing wrong with ridiculing video game journalists for standing up for being bad at games when this is their line of work.

The aforementioned YouTuber said difficulty vs accessibility in games is a worthwhile discussion.  I am here to respectfully disagree.  Now let me make something clear – I’m not talking about this when it comes to video games that are virtually unplayable.  If a game has a stupid difficulty spike that makes things unfair, that is something worth calling out.  I’m talking about games that make very clear the fact that they are hard and you should be expecting that.

Best example – Dark Souls, but instead of looking at that (because I never got into the franchise), let’s take a look at a game in the same vein that I happen to love – BloodborneBloodborne is hard.  Really hard.  This game will fuck you up.  Dark Souls is a game where you are encouraged to play defensively and wait for openings to attack.  Bloodborne is nothing like that.  Playing defensively will get you killed.  The reality is that it is a game where you are actively encouraged to take risks.  Did you just take a really bad hit?  Well, if you have the guts and fast timing, you can get back into the fight and regain some of the health if you do it quickly.  You got a limited window, idiot!  So get in there and fight!  That style of gameplay is not accessible to everyone.  Plus, the fact that the game demands that style of play also means that you are going to be putting you fate in the hands of blind luck more than you’d like.

But here’s the thing – the players of this game know this.  They accept this.  It’s an understood risk of playing this game.  Because that’s the kind of game that From Software makes.  It’s in the vein of a franchise that was marketed specifically on it being really, really hard.  The original poster for Dark Souls had the line “Prepare to Die” on it.  Players went in with both eyes wide open.  Uncompromising difficulty.  But here’s the thing – you can learn how to work with that.  You learn the placement of the enemies, and the weaknesses of bosses.  Then you put that knowledge to use and fight your ass off.  A little luck will sometimes be required, but you will learn by trial and error.  Lots, and lots of error.

At what point does a game that is difficult become inaccessible?  When it doesn’t appeal to the casual?  Games that market themselves on difficulty are by their nature going to be niche.  Despite the mainstream success of Dark Souls and Bloodborne, they are games made for a certain type of gamer and they know that.  They aren’t the only ones.  Look at Devil May Cry 3 as another example.  That game’s difficulty is downright punishing at points.  The final fight with Vergil requires nerves of steel and a little bit of genuine luck to overcome.  But players understood this.  No one was saying back in the day that we needed to have an Easy mode.

The big debate seems to be that we need to make games easier so that people who don’t like difficult games can have them.  Why?  Why should a game designer compromise their creative image of a game in order to cater to people who don’t want to invest the time or energy to master the game’s mechanics?  You can become pretty badass at Bloodborne if you just learn the placement of enemies and learn how to telegraph their attacks.  I can take on giants and wolf-men early on just by being able to dodge at then strike while taking time to step back and recover energy.  It’s not that hard.  Guess who I did that – by mastering the game’s mechanics.  While the enemies get more difficult in New Game Plus, now I have the weapons I like best and can make even shorter work of my foes.  Because by now I’ve played the game long enough to have that level of mastery.

Plus, there is no way to make that game easy.  Not really.  The game’s entire mechanics are centered around the difficulty and playing well to be able to overcome that.  Everything is built around that!  Take that away and what are you left with?  A game where you wander around beautiful gothic environments and kill the occasional bad guy.  Where’s the fun there?

I’m not seeing where this idea that games need to be easier in order to cater to more people comes from.  The new Assassin’s Creed game has a kind of spectator mode where there are no enemies or threats and you can just wander around the world and look at stuff.  I mean, sure, the environments are pretty, but why not just make a game that is an open world walking simulator at that point?  I don’t even hate walking simulators on their merits.  My favorite game of 2015 was Life is Strange.  But Assassin’s Creed isn’t that type of game.  It’s the kind of game where you are supposed to be taking out targets and using stealth to infiltrate places.  All of the game’s mechanics are built around that.  Take that away and what’s left?  Nothing important, that’s what.

Here’s the thing – I get that hard games can be frustrating to people.  The uncompromising difficulty of Cuphead with its catchy art style and glorious music (sucks that I don’t have an Xbox One.  Will never get to play it unless I get a decent gaming PC) is something players have to adapt to.  But forgive me if I actually believe that players can do that, instead of having to have their hands held the whole damn time because the devs need to make a mode just so they can get in on the fun.  I can play the easy mode on Persona 5 because I love the story and I am just dying to get ahead on it without grinding for long periods of time.  But then I can crank up the difficulty on Doom and rip and tear with the vast arsenal.  But the thing is that both devs made those choices for those modes to be in it.  Can you imagine Doom with a safe mode?  That sounds boring as fuck.

Will be sending this article to the aforementioned YouTuber.  We’ll see where this goes.  What about all of you?  Thoughts about the difficulty vs accessibility in gaming?  Let me know in the Comments.

Until next time, a quote,

“It is one of man’s curious idiosyncrasies to create difficulties for the pleasure of solving them.” – Joseph de Maistre

Peace out,

Maverick

How Many Steps Forward Do I Take?

There’s this retarded video making the rounds that is supposed to educate everyone about the nature of privilege and show me that I’m a bad person for having all the privilege with the camera consistently cutting to some black guy who feels dejected for not being as far ahead as everyone else.  Well, I’ve decided to see how many steps I get to take.  I’ll answer each question and we’ll count the steps at the end.  I’ll also be proving a point with this at the same time.  I am a lower-class adult who is living just above the poverty level.  I grew up VERY lower-middle class.  As I said, it’s going to prove a point.

Take two steps forward if your parents are still married

Over 25 years and counting.  Probably closer to 30.  Took my two steps (in my mind).

Take two steps forward if you grew up with a father figure in the home.

Wait, I thought one of the big things is how we don’t need fathers anymore?  I thought that was a big regressive left talking point?  Took my two steps, though.  Thank Groj I’m not actually having to do this in real life.  My tiny-ass apartment isn’t good for it.

Take two steps forward if you had access to private education

The idea that my family was affording that is amusing to me.  I’m a public school boy just like pretty much the rest of you.  Ain’t taking those steps.

Take two steps forward if you had access to a free tutor

Not even in the state university I went to.  No steps taken.

Take two steps forward if you never had to worry about your cell phone being shut off

I’ve been so poor that my phone was shut off.  That’s the thing about having a prepaid cheap as shit phone.  Still standing here.

Take two steps forward if you’ve never had to help your parents with bills.

Finally, moving again.  Yeah, my parents are excellent with the money they have and are able to save well.  They learned how to do poverty right and thanks to both of them working for the school district in my hometown, they both have stable retirement, but it’s understood that because of their financial situation, one of them will be working until they are REALLY old.  Took my two steps, but this question is ignoring the nuance of the situation.

Take two steps forward if it wasn’t for your athletic ability, you didn’t have to pay for college.

My debt was $46,000.  Blow me.  Standing right here.

Take two steps forward if you’ve never had to worry about where your next meal would come from

I’ve starved myself before because of the poverty I’ve been in over the years.  But please, tell me again about all the privilege I have because of the color of my skin.  All fucking ears.

So let’s count the steps.  I took six.  Six steps.  How much do you figure the rich black kid who grew up on the hillside in the city I live in took?  A fuck of a lot more.  This stupid video that’s making the rounds ignores all nuance because it’s easier to show the dejected black guy looking sad and play to one’s pathos than to look at those of us who grew up in a poor community and had to work our fucking asses off to get where we are.  I hate that video, and fuck the people who say it’s so inspiring.  Fuck everyone who wants to tell me about the fact that I have it so much better because I’m white.

Here’s the thing about privilege – if someone could tell me how I could cash this shit in, I would.  I really would.  Without a second thought, I would.  I’d go to the Privilege Bank and get all the perks I could get, today.  My life has been so fucking hard and I am so fucking tired of being poor and having to balance doing repairs on my car with saving a hundred bucks a month.  That’s the position I’m in.  You want to tell me about how I have it so good because of my fucking privilege?  Yeah, you do that, upper-middle class white girl with hair dyed a color not found in nature, of the black kid who is attending an Ivy League school on your parent’s dime.

Go right ahead.  Because my answer is the same – can you direct me to where I can cash in this privilege?  If so, I’ll talk to you later.  I got somewhere I need to be.

Until next time, a quote,

“One ungrateful person does an injury to all needy people.” – Pubilius Syrus

Peace out,

Maverick