Sexist game-world balance
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arrowhen



Joined: 19 Oct 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

KaVir wrote:

Indeed, and I've never suggested that they shouldn't be, or even that they couldn't be just as strong, tough, etc, as male warriors.

No, you haven't, and I certainly didn't mean to imply that you had. But other posters in this thread HAVE said exactly that, and it was to them that my earlier post was primarily directed.

Quote:
All I'm arguing is that "gender" could be used as more than just cosmetic fluff. Take the Wheel of Time theme, for example - female spellcasters have a natural disposition towards air and water magic, while male spellcasters have a natural disposition towards fire and earth magic. Sure, there are exceptions - and each element has its pros and cons - but the result makes gender actually mean something. Would you argue that a Wheel of Time mud should ignore this aspect of the theme?


Actually, that seems like a perfectly valid gender distinction, one that fits the flavor of the game world and which doesn't place undue restrictions on the range of character concepts available to the player.

What I object to are gender distinctions that actually limit a character's ability to succeed in a certain role. Things like "men have higher strength, women have higher charisma," or "men are better fighters, women are better mages." Flavor distinctions are another thing entirely. If both males and females are equally capable of becoming successful mages, but each speciallizes in a different area of magic, that's fine... PROVIDED that the specialties are equally appealing.

That's one of the problems with implementing too many stat variations between males and females: the very nature of most muds' rules systems would tend to favor the males.

The typical male fantasy sterotypes are the big, beefy, heavily-armed fighter and the powerful fireball and lightning bolt spewing wizard. The typical FEMALE fantasy stereotypes are the quick, stealthy archer/thief and the sly, seductive enchantress.

The male sterotypes, big guys with swords and skinny guys with big spells, are very easy to handle in a mud. All you need to do is figure out how often they hit and how hard.

The female stereotypes present far more difficulties. Archery is pretty much always going to suck in a mud. Thieves, pretty much by definition, are all about going places they shouldn't go and taking things they shouldn't take; if players are to have a satisfying thief experience, you have to create places for them to break into and things for them to steal.

Seduction? Forget about it. You MIGHT script the occasional guard here and there that high-charisma female characters could distract, but seduction attempts between PCs can't be handled with code. Those are purely roleplaying exchanges and, as such, depend entirely on player skill rather than character stats.

The traditionally "female" types of magic--divinations, illusions, subtle charms and maniuplations, are simarly difficult or impossible to handle well strictly through code.

Now, in a mud with a social-combat system so highly developed and integral to the game that social combat was just as common and just as important as physical combat, I can see where trading strength for social skills would be fair. But I don't see a lot of muds like that around. In a more typical mud, where physical conflict is a constant occurance and an indespensible part of character advancement, saying that female characters aren't as good at combat is essentially saying that female characters aren't any good in this game.

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Just because there's no statistical difference between male and female characters doesn't mean that the choice serves no purpose. Gender is an important part of identity, and allowing players to choose a gender lets them create characters with which they can identify.


Once again, the exact same thing is true of race. Do you think that races should be identical?

When I said gender is an important part of identityMen and women log onto muds and create characters, elves and goblins do not. It's been said many times in this thread that a large majority of players are more comfortable playing characters of their own gender. I doubt many people are as attached to a fantasy race.

Now, if this was a mud that feaured all human characters, divided into real world races, then yes, I'd expect all the races to be statistically identical.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greggen wrote:
Would you object if there was a "drow" race in which the females were generally bigger and stronger, and only the females were accepted as clerics?

'Object' is too strong a word, but I might be disinclined to play such a game, especially if drow were the only choice.


Well I'm assuming the usual race selection, along with the benchmark human (with identical genders).

But in D&D (which is where drow originally come from) drow females are indeed described as generally being bigger and stronger than the males. The drow are also a matriarchal society, with a female deity that only accepts female clergy, and each drow 'house' is ruled by a priestess.

How do you feel a Forgotten Realms mud should handle this issue? Remove the gender distinction and you completely alter the whole structure of drow society.

Greggen wrote:
What I'm saying is that if you give players a choice on identifying features associated with humans (gender, (human) skin colour), these features are typically chosen for identification purposes and you should allow players to treat them as such by not giving them any advantages/disadvantages.


Well I've already said I agree with using humans as the benchmark, so what I'm really talking about here is fantasy races.

Greggen wrote:
This is not so bad because you are accentuating the fantasy over the identification and perhaps avoiding my question a little bit. If you gave players a choice between white skinned human and black skinned human, would you force black players to play white skinned humans for certain gameplay traits?


Probably not, because of the "human benchmark" thing, as well as the fact that skin colour is pretty much irrelevent as far as humans are concerned. I could see tying skin colour to certain cultures, just like in the real world, but I don't consider PCs to be "typical" members of their race, and as such I think it would be fine to let them play one of the rare individuals who grew up in a foreign culture.

Greggen wrote:
This is complete fantasy and identification is less of an issue. If a woman chooses to play a troll, the choice between female and male troll might not be such an issue since playing a troll is fantastical to begin with, and there is not much there to identify with -- you could probably get away with making female trolls different to male trolls without alienating anyone.


What about fantasy races which have more to identify with, gender-wise? Would you have problems with a satyr race that was male-only, or a nymph race that was female-only?

Greggen wrote:
Sneak edit: Thinking about drow, actually -- if a black person joined your D&D group, how comfortable would you be explaining that the fair skinned elves are good and pure, while the dark skinned elves are evil.

How comfortable would you be explaining a setting where fair skinned humans are good and pure, while dark skinned humans are evil?


I think this is the crux of the issue - it's not the differences themselves that seem to bother you, but rather the political correctness of it. Abstract those differences away to a fantasy race and it becomes less offensive the less human that race is.

How comfortable would you be explaining a setting where green skinned humans are evil?

Alister wrote:
If World of Warcraft provides us any insight about this phenomenon, men probably make female characters because they like imagining the boobies.


I remember talking to a player recently who said he always played female characters on graphical muds. When I asked him why, he said it was because he didn't want to spend several hundred hours staring at a male backside!
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Greggen



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

KaVir wrote:
I think this is the crux of the issue - it's not the differences themselves that seem to bother you, but rather the political correctness of it. Abstract those differences away to a fantasy race and it becomes less offensive the less human that race is.


No, absolutely not. Sorry, but you seem to have entirely missed my point. This has nothing to do with political correctness as I'm not claiming changes between genders would be offensive (although they might be to some players, but I don't think anyone should compromise their game for PC bullying), I'm claiming:

Quote:
What I'm saying is that if you give players a choice on identifying features associated with humans (gender, (human) skin colour), these features are typically chosen for identification purposes and you should allow players to treat them as such by not giving them any advantages/disadvantages.


If you don't care how many players you get, you can make a game where men fart every 5 minutes and women leave trails of menstrual blood. I wouldn't find it offensive; in fact, it would probably amuse me for 5 minutes or so.

And to answer my own question: I would be very uncomfortable telling a black player about a setting where black people are evil because he'd identify with the characters in the setting a probably find it offensive. Much more so than the drow example.

The identification was the important thing about the example, not that they'd find it offensive.

Putting the offensiveness of it aside, he'd have to play a white character if he didn't want to be evil.

What part do you disagree with?:
  • Players identify more closely with characters that more closely resemble themselves.
  • Players won't like it if they choose a character with human traits similar to themselves (as opposed to alternative human traits) and find themselves at a disadvantage because of it. Non-human traits are not so important.
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shasarak



Joined: 29 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the fundamental difference between (on the one hand) race, class etc. and (on the other) gender is still not being understood by some folks in this thread.

Think about why a player would choose to play a green goblin rather than a blue one. The chances are that the choice of race is actually a function of the associated game-stat effects: if green goblins emit poison gas and blue goblins produce sparks, the player is not thinking "do I feel more like a green goblin or a blue goblin?" he's thinking "do I want poison gas or electricity?"

Similarly, even if a player does decide that she wants to play an elf even before she's checked what elven abilities actually are in this game, she'll be doing so on the basis of a stereotype of what elves are like in game terms - elves are tall, graceful, slender, dexterous, magical, lethal with long-bows, etc.

But the choice of character gender is not typically made on the basis of game-stat considerations, it's made on a much more basic level - what feels right, what sort of person am I, what sort of person is my character, etc. This is why it has to be treated differently from every other characteristic like race, class, etc. and needs not to have significant implications in games-stat terms: it's a choice that people want to make independently of game-stats, something much more akin to a character's name or description rather than their race or class.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 11:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greggen wrote:
And to answer my own question: I would be very uncomfortable telling a black player about a setting where black people are evil because he'd identify with the characters in the setting a probably find it offensive.


I'd feel pretty uncomfortable as well, but I strongly suspect that's more because you're applying a negative trait to a skin colour which has very strong ties to real-world issues.

Would you feel uncomfortable telling a black player about a setting where black people possessed a stronger talent for fire magic, but a weaker talent for ice magic?

Or to use the negative trait for something which has no real-world bias issues, would you feel uncomfortable telling a green-eyed player about a setting where green eyes indicated association with demons?

Greggen wrote:
What part do you disagree with?:
  • Players identify more closely with characters that more closely resemble themselves.
  • Players won't like it if they choose a character with human traits similar to themselves (as opposed to alternative human traits) and find themselves at a disadvantage because of it. Non-human traits are not so important.


I think the first point really depends on the player. Some try to create characters that resemble themselves, while others try to create characters that resemble a favourite character from a movie or novel. It also depends on the style of mud - in particular, the players in non-RP muds are less likely to worry about a character they can identify with.

I generally agree with the second point, but it doesn't really counter what I've been arguing - I've never suggested that one race (or gender) should be at a disadvantage to another, only that it should be different. Indeed if one race was better than than another I would consider it an indication of bad game design, and this is also one of my dislikes of the way races are implemented in many muds where (for example) elves make better wizards than humans, or dwarves make better warriors. I believe a human warrior should be just as good overall as a dwarf or ogre warrior, just with a different set of options. For example a human warrior might be more agile than the dwarf even though he's not as tough, and while he might lack the brute force of the ogre he should be able to compensate with better tactics due to his intelligence.


shasarak wrote:
Similarly, even if a player does decide that she wants to play an elf even before she's checked what elven abilities actually are in this game, she'll be doing so on the basis of a stereotype of what elves are like in game terms - elves are tall, graceful, slender, dexterous, magical, lethal with long-bows, etc.

But the choice of character gender is not typically made on the basis of game-stat considerations...


However I suspect that's only because of assumptions players are making based on their familiarity with previous muds.

Do you feel that Diablo II's success was negatively affected by the fact that all barbarians are white males, all paladins are black males, and all sorceresses are white females?
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Greggen



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Would you feel uncomfortable telling a black player about a setting where black people possessed a stronger talent for fire magic, but a weaker talent for ice magic?


This particular example was meant to illustrate that players identify with their characters moreso than my second point. To answer your question, I wouldn't feel uncomfortable with telling a black person that, but I don't think it is a good idea to force a black person into fire magic because they wish to play a character that resembles themselves.

Quote:
It also depends on the style of mud - in particular, the players in non-RP muds are less likely to worry about a character they can identify with.


I agree.

Quote:
I generally agree with the second point, but it doesn't really counter what I've been arguing - I've never suggested that one race (or gender) should be at a disadvantage to another


I didn't mean generally disadvantageous, I meant if say an option wasn't as available, or as workable, to them as it would be otherwise -- for example a female character wanting to be a fighter.

Quote:
Do you feel that Diablo II's success was negatively affected by the fact that all barbarians are white males, all paladins are black males, and all sorceresses are white females?


I think Diablo II could have been improved by allowing its players to choose gender for each class and allowing them to identify more closely with their avatar. So yes.
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Alister



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

shasarak wrote:

But the choice of character gender is not typically made on the basis of game-stat considerations, it's made on a much more basic level - what feels right, what sort of person am I


How can you say that? Do we have any evidence to say that, if game-stats mattered, people *wouldn't* start choosing their gender based on some factor other than identification?
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shasarak



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alister wrote:
shasarak wrote:

But the choice of character gender is not typically made on the basis of game-stat considerations, it's made on a much more basic level - what feels right, what sort of person am I


How can you say that? Do we have any evidence to say that, if game-stats mattered, people *wouldn't* start choosing their gender based on some factor other than identification?

Well of course they would - they'd have no choice - but they'd resent having to. That's precisely the problem! Players want to be able to make the choice of gender for "identity" reasons without having to make in-game compromises to do it.
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Alister



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

shasarak wrote:
Players want to be able to make the choice of gender for "identity" reasons without having to make in-game compromises to do it.


Intuitively, I think that sounds like a good explanation of things. But is this really how things always work in practice? I've only played two games where different gendered characters get different powers. Diablo 2, and a mud called Aeonian Prophecy. I had no problems with this, and from what I understand nor did the tens of thousands of other Diablo 2 players (well, except for Greggen apparently) nor the dozen or so Aeonian Prophecy players. People freely switched between genders with no complaints. And Aeonian Prophecy was a roleplay mud, where you'd expect "identity" issues to be most pronounced!

I don't think there's very much (any?) evidence to say that "identity" is going to be such an important issue for gender decisions. There's not much evidence the other way either, but at least there's some (Diablo 2 probably being the best example). I would guess that, all genders being equal, people will go with the one they identify with most. But if there's some sort of differentiation between genders, people will go with the one that best fits how they conceptualize their character to be, with no conflict from identity. Even if gender is forced for certain powers. But that's just speculation. Maybe someone needs to make a MUD where different genders have different pros and cons and see how players actually react to it?
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Greggen



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 11:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I had no problems with this, and from what I understand nor did the tens of thousands of other Diablo 2 players (well, except for Greggen apparently)


I liked Diablo II and in the list of features I would want added to the game, choosing gender would be quite low on the list; hovever, I have no doubt it would have improved the game slightly. It matters less on Diablo II probably because it is very hack and slash and identifying with your character is not so important. Your character barely even speaks.

I expect Blizzard made the decision to fix the genders so they didn't have to put extra effort into the artwork for what would be a minor feature in the grand scheme of things. MUDs don't require this extra effort -- in fact, it requires extra effort to make them different, so why not keep genders the same?

I have given some good reasons why keeping the genders very similar is a good idea; why don't you tell me why making them different is?

Quote:
And Aeonian Prophecy was a roleplay mud, where you'd expect "identity" issues to be most pronounced!


I would not expect players to turn away in disgust if they could not satisfactorily choose a character to identify with, so I'm not suprised you didn't hear anything -- but given the choice I think players generally prefer to play characters they more closely identify with. By changing the gameplay of the genders, you are effectively taking away an element of that choice.

I'd be interested in knowing: on this game was the split of male to female characters 50/50? What was the split of male to female players? In my experience of games where gender is meaningless to gameplay, the ratio of male to female characters has correlated with the ratio of male to female players. This certainly suggests to me players enjoy playing characters of their own gender more (your evidence).

Do not underestimate the power of character identification. Think of all your favourite films, novels, and to a lesser extent, games. Think of how the main character in their stories relates to you and the demographic they are aimed at.
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Alister



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 2:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greggen wrote:
It matters less on Diablo II probably because it is very hack and slash and identifying with your character is not so important.


so are many muds Wink Has anyone ever done a survey to see what the ratio is between hack'n'slash-focused muds and roleplay-focused muds?


Greggen wrote:

I have given some good reasons why keeping the genders very similar is a good idea; why don't you tell me why making them different is?


I think your comment about Blizzard and artwork indirectly got at the most compelling reason why you'd want to differentiate genders in a mud. It's a matter of effort and design complexity. Let's say you have a hack'n'slash mud with the 4 standard classes (rogue, warrior, cleric, mage). Now let's say you want to allow people to play at different ends of each class (e.g. thug/thief, barbarian/swashbuckler, exorcist/healer, evoker/enchanter). You could implement this by literally removing your 4 old classes and add 8 new classes. Probably the intuitive choice. Or you could be sly about it and leave classes exactly as is, but make gender affect stats in such a way that choosing one gender or the other will shift your aptitude for skills that the subclasses are defined by. A simpler, more elegant change that (theoretically) should be able to have the same outcome.

Popular written fantasy sometimes limits certain abilities to specific genders. The Sword of Truth, The Wheel of Time, and (I think?) Elizabeth Haydon's Raphsody series and George RR Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire. Maybe the extra conceptual space you gain by differentiating between genders makes it easier to develop rich, engaging storylines or histories? If it's true and you want to do something similar in a mud, I think it would be a bit odd if you also didn't back up the differences with changes to your game's mechanics.


Greggen wrote:

given the choice I think players generally prefer to play characters they more closely identify with. By changing the gameplay of the genders, you are effectively taking away an element of that choice.


Right, but the really critical question is, "If game genders are not identical, do people really care?" It's a slight but important difference. Players may be biased towards a specific gender, all things being equal. That doesn't say anything about whether or not people will care (or have any less fun) if different gendered characters have different powers or statistics. It could very well be that people would freely give up this superfluous choice of gender for more ways to customize the abilities of their character.


Greggen wrote:

I'd be interested in knowing: on this game was the split of male to female characters 50/50? What was the split of male to female players?


I'd say it was somewhere around 60% male characters, 40% female characters. I don't know about the gender of the players though, one was definitely female, and I was definitely male. That's about all I know though. Sorry.


Greggen wrote:

Do not underestimate the power of character identification. Think of all your favourite films, novels, and to a lesser extent, games. Think of how the main character in their stories relates to you and the demographic they are aimed at.


I don't really know what to make of this. You seem to be implying that, if I identify with one of the main characters, I'm going to enjoy the film/book/game more (by the fact that you are trying to extend this "identification" claim to designing games)? If so, I would most certainly have to disagree. I'm a huge klutz; I was on crutches at least 6 months out of every year from grade 1 to grade 6. I'm also the furthest thing from suave. Whenever I'm nervous or lie, my ears go tomato red and I break out into a huge grin. But my favorite characters in book and film have always been charismatic thieves. Sort of the antithesis of me. The Thomas Crown Affair is the only movie I watch regularily. Caravaggio from The English Patient is my all-time favorite book character. I have a super-huge crush on Elizabeth Gracen (the immortal-thief from Highlander: The Raven). When I MUD or play ad&d, I almost invariably make rogues. I don't identify with any of these characters. It sounds to me that (at least in my case, and I suspect many others) fantasy is more important than identification.

Now, I don't doubt that identification is more important to some people. You seem like the exemplar. So at this point it's really a matter or the type of player you want to attract (if you want to make a specific sort of mud), or ratios (if you want to attract the most amount of players).
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shasarak



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm a huge klutz; I was on crutches at least 6 months out of every year from grade 1 to grade 6. I'm also the furthest thing from suave. Whenever I'm nervous or lie, my ears go tomato red and I break out into a huge grin. But my favorite characters in book and film have always been charismatic thieves. Sort of the antithesis of me.

It's not as narrow as identifying yourself with the character, clearly. It might well be the case, for example, that you want your MUD character to be an idealised version of yourself, or to be a distillation of the evil parts of your personality, or to be someone who does brilliantly all the things you actually don't do very well, or who is cooler and more confident than yourself - there are lots of other possiblities. But, whatever sort of character people want, they do have a specific type of character in mind.

And gender, I suggest, tends to be one aspect of that character. Suppose you want to play the MUD as a charismatic thief - but then suppose the MUD insists that all charismatic thieves must be female - wouldn't that annoy you just a little bit?

As far as Diablo II is concerned, I've not played it, but I get the impression there's no real sense of Hrothgar speaking to Eonwe, only of the player whose character is Hrothgar talking to the player whose character is Eonwe - so there isn't actually much sense of a "character", merely icons for players. I also don't know what the graphics are like in Diablo II, but, in games like that in the past, they've tended to be a little bit cartoonish, which makes the appearance of a person's avatar even less relevant - you don't think of them as the character, just as a cartoony stand-in for the player.

The sheer size of graphical MMORPGs and the fact that there often isn't much to do except kill things and collect treasure also makes it less likely that there will be complicated character interactions going on.

By contrast, in a text environment, you can visualise other characters in a vivid, non-cartoon-like way, and (particularly in slightly more RP environments) there is an actual sense of characters interacting with characters rather than just players with players. That makes character identity much more important.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Suppose you want to play the MUD as a charismatic thief - but then suppose the MUD insists that all charismatic thieves must be female - wouldn't that annoy you just a little bit?


You're still arguing from the perspective of a bad implementation.

Suppose you wanted to play the mud as a charismatic thief - but then suppose the MUD insists that all thieves are obnoxious and hated - wouldn't that annoy you just as much? But that's not valid grounds for arguing that all classes should be the same!

The same is true of gender. A better solution to your above example would be to say that your charismatic thief receives a bonus when interacting with NPCs of the opposite gender, assuming a mud where there are sufficient NPCs of both genders that the bonuses would be of equal value.
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Alister



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shasharak wrote:

It's not as narrow as identifying yourself with the character, clearly. It might well be the case, for example, that you want your MUD character to be an idealised version of yourself, or to be a distillation of the evil parts of your personality, or to be someone who does brilliantly all the things you actually don't do very well, or who is cooler and more confident than yourself - there are lots of other possiblities. But, whatever sort of character people want, they do have a specific type of character in mind.


That seems much more palatable to me than a claim that identifying with (which strikes me as synonymous with empathizing with) your character is of glaring importance. It also seems to put gender on equal footing with race and class, since they are all (equally important?) parts of a "specific type of character". But races/classes rarely work in the exact way that we anticipate them when we first start a new mud (races especially). And (I don't think?) that often drives players away. So why should we think differentiation between genders (which, since it is not common, is essentially just unanticipated ways of them working) will matter?


Shasharak wrote:

And gender, I suggest, tends to be one aspect of that character. Suppose you want to play the MUD as a charismatic thief - but then suppose the MUD insists that all charismatic thieves must be female - wouldn't that annoy you just a little bit?


Maybe a bit, but definitely not more than finding out the mud makes all rogues backstabby, circley killing machines which never use their lockpicking, hiding, or persuasion skills. I'd be far more happy to play a female character than I would be to not be able to play the character concept I want to play.


Shasharak wrote:

By contrast, in a text environment, you can visualise other characters in a vivid, non-cartoon-like way, and (particularly in slightly more RP environments) there is an actual sense of characters interacting with characters rather than just players with players. That makes character identity much more important.


I just thought of this mud called Age of Reptiles. Ever heard of it? If so, what do you make of it? I think the fact that it's around and semi-successful by mud standards (6-10 avg players online, by their TMS listing) really challenges any attempt to say that identifying with your character is important.
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Greggen



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
You're still arguing from the perspective of a bad implementation.


All things within reason, of course. I am not arguing that both genders should be perfectly identical -- there are good differences and bad differences (Well, IMHO bad differences and acceptable differences). My hope is, using my reasoning, someone would be able to see which differences would detract from the game rather than add anything.

I believe bad differences are the ones that affect gameplay, and block paths to the player because of their gender selection. I was not trying to claim that men should be able to have babies and women should be able to pee standing up.

Quote:
A better solution to your above example would be to say that your charismatic thief receives a bonus when interacting with NPCs of the opposite gender.


That is certainly very reasonable. A bad example (IMHO) is saying male fighters are strong and slow whilst female fighters are quick and nimble, even if each were equally capable.

Alister wrote:
It also seems to put gender on equal footing with race and class, since they are all (equally important?) parts of a "specific type of character".


Kavir wrote:
The same is true of gender.


I'm not going to re-hash my arguments that gender is much more fundemental and important than race or class, suffice to say I have made those arguments (human traits outweighing fantastical ones).

Quote:
I just thought of this mud called Age of Reptiles.


A fun game is a fun game, and there are many more important things than identifying with your character. I think it is a powerful tool, though, that players will appreciate. This is what I've been trying to get across since you mentioned Diablo II.
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