Jun 25, 2009

[Virtual Worlds as the Great Equalizer]

Colin Brennan talks about gender identity in MMOs:
"I owe much to my online escapes, as they aid me in more ways than just providing a fun distraction. They give me the opportunity to appear as I truly feel inside, and let me interact with others without the stigma of being or appearing to be transgendered attached. Beyond just me, however, are hundreds of thousands, or perhaps even millions of individuals who have gained an advantage or some sort of insight thanks to virtual worlds."

  On the one hand, the anonymity of the avatar can break down some social boundaries for people. But then you also have phenomenon like the borderline 'racism' between player factions like the Horde and Alliance being created within those same games. The fact that a MMO can allow people to explore an alternate identity as well as provide a way for people to show their true character is really fascinating. Who hasn't felt somehow more 'liberated' through an avatar? But conversely, who hasn't also made assumptions about others based on their avatar?

Jun 19, 2009

[The Making of Final Fantasy VII]

A cool interview with FF7 director Yoshinori Kitase is up at Edge. Lots of cool insights in it about the development of the first 3D FF. =)

"This was undoubtedly the game that changed everything. We felt a wind of change inside the company during the development process. There was this incredible feeling I’ll never forget: we were making a new thing… making history. Imagine.”

Jun 13, 2009

[WoW Trade Chat: Keepin' It Classy!]


Oh, World of Warcraft. Why must you remind me every so often why I don't bother even trying to get my wife to play you? That, were she to log in and find trade channel flooded one day about Those Fucking Japs and Their Slanty Eyed Bitch Women, she might question what it is I find engaging about the game in the first place? 'Oh, honey, don't mind Moxxi, he's just a white guy, and when white people get on the internet, they use the internet cloaking field in a unique way... they become anonymous, but they insist on letting everyone know they're anonymous WHITE PEOPLE, and proceed to drag themselves back and forth in the shit trough of Trade, trying to outdo each other in complete and utter foulness.'

There are things I like about WoW, but a lot of the time, I'd be embarrased if anyone I knew read what I read day in and day out in Ogrimmar trade while trying to get a group together for whatever... "HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE A BLACK WOMAN TO TAKE A SHIT? 9 MONTHS LOLOL GET IT?"
You stay classy, Trade chat. Ugh.

Wonder why it seems like people other than white males seem to be scarce in most online games? There's a hint for you. Make the social environment toxic enough, and all those 'others' will leave in disgust or opt out of participating in the first place. Way to go, asshats!