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Vox Day: My orc and troll fighting game won’t have any women in it, because that wouldn’t be historically accurate

If you want historically accurate male-on-male combat action, the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association Board of Directors Simulator 3000: 2011 Edition is the way to go
If you want historically accurate male-on-male combat action, the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association Board of Directors Simulator 3000: 2011 Edition is the way to go

So our old friend Vox Day is working on a video game. And he’s decided to make a bold and unprecedented choice in his design of the game: he’s not going to have any ladies in it.

But it turns out this choice has nothing to do with anything so pedestrian as misogyny. In fact, it was the only rational choice he could make. Let’s let him explain. He has such a way with words. (He’s apparently some sort of writer.)

I am a game designer. I am designing and producing a game that does not, and will not, have a single female character in it. This is not because I am misogynistic. This is not because I do not women to play the game. This is because putting women in the game makes no sense, violates the principle of the suspension of disbelief, and will not make the game any better as a game.

Well, that makes sense. I mean, the game is probably some game that has to have only male characters to be believable. You know, like Dance Party with the American Presidents or the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association Board of Directors Simulator 3000 or something like that.

I am the lead designer of First Sword, a combat management game. The game has orcs and men, elves and dwarves. It has goblins and trolls. But it has no women.

Uh, wait. It’s a combat game filled with orcs, goblins and trolls, but putting women in it would “violate …  the principle of the suspension of disbelief.”

Because the game is a gladiator game. Women cannot credibly fight as gladiators. We don’t put women in the game for the same reason we don’t put bunny rabbits or children in the game.

Well, why not? You put fucking orcs in it. Why not make a combat game with bunny rabbits?

Actually, someone already did that. It’s called Overgrowth. And it’s supposed to be pretty good.

Putting women in the game would be an act of brutal sadism, an act of barbarism even by pagan Roman standards. While the Romans did occasionally put female gladiators in the arena, they were there as a comedic act.

Really? This is a VIDEO GAME. You can do whatever you want with it. It is really harder to imagine a woman being able to fight a man than it is to imagine entire races of imaginary humanoid creatures?

We could, of course, throw out historical verisimilitude. But we’re not going to. Because we value that verisimilitude far more than we value the opinion of a few whiny women who don’t play the sort of games we make anyhow.

Historical verisimilitude? Historical verisimilitude?!

YOU’RE MAKING A GAME ABOUT ORCS AND TROLLS.

ORCS AND TROLLS DO NOT EXIST.

THEY HAVE NEVER EXISTED.

THERE IS NO HISTORY THAT INCLUDES ORCS AND TROLLS.

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marci
6 years ago

Yeah his company can do whatever it wants, meanwhile companies like Bethesda and Bioware can continue to get all my money. Does he really think that women gamers like me are going to cry about his crappy little company not making games for us? Don’t make me laugh!

OT I had a particularly misandric day today. First I played Skyrim for about 3 hours. Then my child broke the toilet (it was in need of repair anyway) and I had to pause my game to deal with that. So I spent about 3 hours taking apart the toilet tank and replacing all the insides. I also made my daughter watch me and pitch in a little. I’m trying to teach her that she can fix things herself, even things that most women shy away from doing because we are told that it is a man’s job. On my next day off I am going to repair my dryer. (I’ve also laid flooring, painted, replaced outlets and taken apart all of my appliances, especially the vacuum) Part of my reason for fixing stuff on my own is financial, but mostly it is because I got sick of feeling helpless. I recognized this stupid voice in my head telling me that I should call someone else to fix whatever for what it was…sexist programming.

When I had the toilet all put back together, I went back to my game.

marinaliteyears
marinaliteyears
6 years ago

Mmm. I was going to keep myself from commenting too much, Lest I trip over myself again and manage to say something stupid again, but this pisses me right off.

This guy obviously knows very little history. Plenty of Woman throughout history have engaged men in combat. Sure, maybe the gladitorial arena itself didnt do it so often, but thats narrowing down your vision quite a bit to stick it to just one culture. And in a fantasy setting, you dont even need the skew anyway, since its a fantasy setting.. you know, with orcs and elves and whatever ingrained culture you want.

but then he starts talking about how ‘sadistic’ and how it breaks ‘plausibility’ and I cannot notice how easily it paints a picture of his misogyny. He is basically admitting that he cannot conceive of a woman defeating a man in combat, which is of course silly.

Even if we assume that there is some serous ‘biotruth’ disadvantage a woman faces in combat against a man, its not so big a difference to never be able to overcome, Because the winner of a fight isn’t always the ‘stronger’ combatant. Skill, luck, and other such factors would play important roles as well, And what really *really* irks me here, is that this guy doubtlessly knows it, because I’m betting you 9:1 odds, Elves are not going to be as strong as orcs typically, but will still win once in awhile.
And that is if we assume woman are inherently disadvantaged, which Doesn’t even have to be relevent to a fantasy setting anyway! (Or reality, for that matter.)

plus, it just reeks of objectification anyway. Why exactly, would it be sadistic to put woman in gladiator style combat..? Specifically, why is it *more* Sadistic then say.. putting men into gladitorial combat? Either he assumes woman would get slaughtered, or he is looking at this from a very ‘idolized’ point of view, with the woman getting hurt/hurting making him uncomfortable. Either way just smells of misogyny.

Also, I wouldn’t have even gave a shit about any of this if the guy hadn’t gone out of his way to say things like that. I can understand not thinking about ones games gender ratios, and just ending up with all guys in something like a gladiatorial arena. I can even understand a fantasy setting being male dominated, even if its kind of the same old same old. But to specifically go out of ones way, and say that woman fighting stretches your suspension of disbelief, and then pull the history card in a decidedly none-historic game, just sounds like your trying to cover your misogyny, or pick fights with woman.

Seranvali
Seranvali
6 years ago

Marci:

I’m strongly of the mind that if it’s in my house I should be able to fix it. Or at least be able to tell an expert what’s wrong with it. Most of it I can fix myself, although that Dyson vacuum cleaner-type monstrosity had me foxed.

leftwingfox
6 years ago

Seranvali: Actually, that’s why my mom is incredibly excited about consumer 3d printers: replacement of broken plastic parts and missing finishings.

Falconer
6 years ago

I am facing down having to pull my bathroom faucet apart and possibly replace the cartridge inside because it’s leaking.

I was going to do it already, but then my daughter got sick.

Reynold Hall
6 years ago

(Sigh, botched the quote…get rid of the first comment please!)

Vox Day said:
“Putting women in the game would be an act of brutal sadism, an act of barbarism even by pagan Roman standards. While the Romans did occasionally put female gladiators in the arena, they were there as a comedic act.”

Isn’t Vox the same guy who came up with “hypotheticals” where honor killings benefit women?

http://fstdt.com/QuoteComment.aspx?QID=87762

“How do honor killings benefit women?

Because female promiscuity and divorce are strongly correlated with a whole host of social ills, from low birth and marriage rates to high levels of illegitimacy.”

I am assuming that he’s not actually serious; even so: To not put women in video games because it’s too vicious, while talking about this shit above is insane.

Fibinachi
6 years ago

Oh, also, I forgot to mention two things:

One: @Leftwingfox; I’d love to see your campaign setting / adventure path if you’d be willing to share. It sounds interesting, and if you want some feedback from someone who isn’t one of your players, I’ve got a fair amount of system experience. But really, I’m just interested because you mentioned “Mining town” and “economics” and that’s, like, my thing.

@Two:

What I find most odd about Vox Day, that is, Theodore Beale, is this:

http://www.amazon.com/The-War-Heaven-Eternal-Warriors/dp/0743453441

Which seems to hint that Mariel, one of the characters, is not only female, but a warrior angel and heavily armed.

Oh wait no, sorry, that was the book I meant to link to THIS; the videogame.

http://www.giantbomb.com/the-war-in-heaven/3030-6716/

which has a cover that heavily indicates that that blond, sword wielding angelic figure is in fact of the womanly persuasion and fighting.

So which is it, Mr. Day of the Wax, I mean Vox? Can women fight or not? Can they fight or not in your videogames? A little consistency is all I ask!

Ally S
6 years ago

@Seranvali

Ally? Was that a wave for a link?

No, just saying hi since we haven’t seen you here for a while. ^_^

yama
6 years ago

Maybe Vox just got more extreme as time went on.

I know his most recent novel has an elf female riposte evolution by braying “were you there?” But, uh, it’s very very long and very very dull, and I can’t be arsed to read it.

yama
6 years ago

Although part of me wants to tear the book a new asshole, as a fuck you to Vox and his attempts to silence criticism through stalking and doxing.

vaiyt
6 years ago

If the typical fantasy setting followed AVFM logic, humans wouldn’t be fighting anyway because everyone knows orcs are stronger.

leftwingfox
6 years ago

Hey Fibinachi: I’m absolutely happy to share, and would love to have a few more sets of eyes. Unfortunately it’s still in in Playable Alpha stage (I.e. a mess of handwritten notes, rough maps and copyright violations to make the weekly gaming deadline). All I really have fit to share at the moment is the initial player’s guide (which really needs a few more proofreading and editing passes):

https://www.dropbox.com/s/fjhls4z3nlda17h/Dark%20Iron%20Player%27s%20Guide.pdf

Kat
Kat
6 years ago

I should feel bad for saying this, but everything I’ve seen from this “man” makes me think dying of a horrible disease is too good for him. Have you seen this article by him? He’s practically salivating and masturbating himself with glee at the thought of “beating the living shit” out of a woman.

ARedFox
ARedFox
5 years ago

Wait… where did he get the idea that female gladiators were meant as comedy? Did he just pull that out of his ass? Or did he hear that “Gladiatrix” was a character in a comic book and then got confused?

Paradoxical Intention
5 years ago

ARedFox | April 5, 2015 at 8:25 pm
Wait… where did he get the idea that female gladiators were meant as comedy? Did he just pull that out of his ass? Or did he hear that “Gladiatrix” was a character in a comic book and then got confused?

Considering he’s got a small studio apartment up his ass because that’s where he spends most of his time, I wouldn’t doubt it.

I’d bet it’d blow his mind to find out that women were vikings, samurai, ninjas, pirates, you fucking name it.

But, no, a game about orcs and trolls can’t have wimmens in it. Wimmens don’t play our kind of games.

No shit, Sherlock. But it’s less to do with “wimmens not enjoying our kinds of games” and more to do with “women don’t like to play games made by shitty sexist developers who hate women enough to explicitly exclude them from a game”.

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