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    • CommentAuthorFlabyo
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.41)
    @Argos - I think it's as you say, that one happened to drop at a point where the topic was 'loud'. (Although I've no idea what GoT is)
    • CommentAuthorArgos
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.42)
    Ah, apologies. Season 2 Game of Thrones, sorry if that's a spoiler for anyone, but I made sure not to mention who it was. But I'm fairly convinced that such was the case - it dropped when the topic was loud, and became the a cultural meme as a result.
    • CommentAuthorFlabyo
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.43)
    @Argos - ah, thought you were referring to another game. No, videogames always find themselves held to very different standards (even when they're not actually being offensive, unlike some of the Tomb Raider PR).
    • CommentAuthorArgos
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.44)
    This is a good point, they do seem to get more flack about their violence than TV shows do. I wonder if it's because videogames have the element of the player controlling someone (ie the player committing the violence) or if it's just a general hate towards videogames.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.45)
    @Argos - " I wonder if it's because videogames have the element of the player controlling someone (ie the player committing the violence) or if it's just a general hate towards videogames"

    Yes. I see a lot of the issues towards violent videogames ("Oh my god, my ten year-old just killed a hooker and took her money!") with some of the issues lobbed toward RPGs back in the '80's ("Oh my god, my ten year-old summoned a demon!"). The issue is both the act AND the fact that it is a child doing it, the issue usually being expressed by a parent who has more of a problem with the combination of the two than the act itself.
    • CommentAuthorArgos
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.46)
    I see, that makes sense.
    • CommentAuthorFlabyo
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.47)
    Which gets us into the whole 'games aren't just for kids, that's why we have age ratings!' thing, and I don't want to drag the thread down...
  1.  (10738.48)
    Actually, in this case I think it's context - GoT has always been about power, domination, and cruelty, and is set in a world where noble actions are punished and evil tends to be rewarded. Tomb Raider, on the other hand, has historically been essentially a female version of Indiana Jones, where being prepared, strong, and clever solves most of your problems. So, if someone rebooted Indy in the way they've rebooted TR, people would be shocked and upset, while with GoT it's just "Yeah, that's a terrible world, so terrible things happen in it." Anyone objecting to that scene in GoT is not watching GoT, while people who've played Tomb raider for years were not expecting this.

    I'm not making a judgement call; I haven't played the latest TR game yet. I've only read about it, so don't know if it's done well or not. I just think a feeling of surprise and betrayal from long time fans over a dramatic reboot is the issue here, based on what I've read, rather than the usual problems people have with adult themes in video games.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.49)
    @rough night

    "I just think a feeling of surprise and betrayal from long time fans over a dramatic reboot is the issue here, based on what I've read, rather than the usual problems people have with adult themes in video games. "

    I think it's partially that but I do also question the use of an attempted rape as a tool to make Lara Croft into the bad ass she later was/will be/is.
  2.  (10738.50)
    RenThing - Yeah, that's a fair complaint. But if it were in a game about a new character, rather than a long standing, well loved, feminist heroine, I don't think as many people would be upset.

    When I played those games as a teenager, I imagined her early life to be full of Science! and field hockey at private schools for girls...
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.51)
    @rough night

    "But if it were in a game about a new character, rather than a long standing, well loved, feminist heroine, I don't think as many people would be upset."

    I can agree and disagree with this. I think the fact that it is Lara Croft, a very well known character, adds to the controversy because she is well-known, thus increasing the "volume" of the controversy because more people would know about her and thus be able to speak about it. I think you're right in that a newer character may have generated less volume regarding a similar controversy, but I would like to think that would be because the newer character is lesser known and not because fewer people would have less of an issue with a lesser known video game character being raped. The later certainly would imply a lot more of negative shit about people than the former.

    "When I played those games as a teenager, I imagined her early life to be full of Science! and field hockey at private schools for girls..."

    Same. And lots of gymnastics classes.
    • CommentAuthorArgos
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.52)
    Thing is, I've been a HUGE Tomb Raider fan since I was 10. When I saw the trailer that provoked the criticism (and I saw it before the shitstorm started), I didn't find anything offensive in it (though Lara's voice acting was a bit too sexy, but I let that slide because I know sometimes when I work out I get worried about what the neighbors thing about my grunts, so eh). It wasn't until I heard the criticism that I got outraged, then went to go watch the offending trailer, and went "Wait, this is the same one I already saw. What was so bad about it?"

    And yes, the rape thing is a tired trope, but I'm not expecting the best story telling when I buy a TR game, I'm looking for fun environment exploring. Also, the person who sexually harasses her is some dude who's been stranded on an island and murdering people, having resorted to primal instincts to survive, and probably gone half-crazy from being stranded on a island. I'd totally believe that a dude like that is going to want to rape a pretty girl when he sees her. Honestly, if anything what pisses me off the most about the reboot is that I'm just tired of Lara getting rebooted. They had one back-story with TR: Revelations, then a new one in TR: Legend, and now another completely different reboot.

    I DO agree that it's unnecessary to make attempted rape a crucial part of her formation as a badass. Part of why I loved Lara as a kid is that she was already badass in her own right, not because she had to go through something traumatizing to force her to become that. However, I don't think the new TR story was really that big of a deal, either.
    •  
      CommentAuthoroldhat
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.53)
    Can I just say that this is probably one of the better discussions of rape in popular culture that I've seen on the internet? With this whole Daniel Tosh thing going on there's been a very scary polarization with a fair share of ignorance going on.
    • CommentAuthorArgos
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.54)
    I've noticed that, too. And it seems that anyone who has anything to say about the Daniel Tosh matter is forced to completely side with either him or the audience member.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.55)
    @Oldhat

    I think it comes down to this: it's Whitechapel.
    • CommentAuthorSolario
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.56)
    I think the problem with Tomb Raider wasn't so much the content (it was certainly the trigger, but not the main issue), but the way that the PR and interviews surrounding it were selling near-rape as a feature or just flat out not acknowledging that using rape as a plot device was problematic.

    Also, like rough night already said, Lara Croft use to be an Indiana Jones type character, except they now decided that rape or near-rape was one of the formative experience that made her into that character. That needs to be treated carefully, otherwise you get the reaction, they got. First of all, rape probably shouldn't be a minor story device, because it trivialises it, and secondly, it's like rebooting the Indy franchise, except now the reason he's afraid of snakes is that they reminded him of the time his uncle molested him.
    •  
      CommentAuthorbrittanica
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012
     (10738.57)
    1. I love Whitechapel, for discussions like this (a thread about video games... that's brought up rape... that DOESN'T make me sick!). Maybe we should go to Fox News, armed w/ eels and maggots, and demand full rights to their "fair and balanced" catchphrase they got so protective about back in the day, 'cause we have that shit on lock.

    2. I've not been playing many video games lately, and I'm not sure why. I made it to the final boss of Lollipop Chainsaw, but got disinterested. I've yet to get anywhere near completing the main quest in Skyrim, but the center part of the disc is chipped (btw: Have anyone ever had that happen to them? The readable part of the disc is ok so far, and I'm thinking if I can find some plastic-safe epoxy or something, I can keep it from getting worse. Any ideas?). The only thing I've really been playing is Minecraft, but I'm mostly just dicking around on Peaceful difficulty; I can do w/out Endermen popping up in front of me while I'm concentrating on building and not screaming like a little girl.
    • CommentAuthorRenThing
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2012 edited
     (10738.58)
    @Solario

    "First of all, rape probably shouldn't be a minor story device, because it trivialises it, and secondly, it's like rebooting the Indy franchise, except now the reason he's afraid of snakes is that they reminded him of the time his uncle molested him."

    Well put.

    @brittanica

    Re: Fox News - Won't work unfortunately, unless you have Uncle Warren, Ariana, and Si behind you like a crazed group of psychopaths, smiling like a Crossed, with said implements of fear and censorship in their eager, eager hands. I mean, one reason why WC is as civil and mature (while being uncouth and childish) is the fact that we had moderators who were brutal in their moderation and were respected for it. If we did it we'd would lack the same punch I think.
  3.  (10738.59)
    No, I really don't want rape in my Tomb Raider. It has no place there. There are places where the specter of sexual violence would fit, and Tomb Raider isn't one of them. I don't care how in character it is for the bad guy, it's just doesn't fit anything the series should be.
    • CommentAuthorFlabyo
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2012
     (10738.60)
    They've since said that there isn't any rape, attempted or otherwise, in the game. And that it was just whoever was giving the interviews had read between the lines a bit too much and said things they shouldn't have.

    And I was ready to believe that was just backtracking, but now I know it's Ms. Pratchett on the writing here... well, I'm inclined to believe we were just looking at misguided PR.