Enter our inner circle. Though hundreds games grant players the freedom to commit atrocious acts of mass murder and violence, sex, even in an environment of mutual consent, is treated as a far more profane taboo.
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Videogames however, suffer from a far more distorted view of sexuality. As anyone familiar with this Television series will tell you, sex is rampant in GoM. Sex has a long, but controversial history in videogames.
Though it is not nearly depicted with the dignity of other forms of fiction, nonetheless the varieties of sex and sexualised characters that exist do tend to serve functions within the game world. Prostitutes for instance are explored deeply in films such as Taxi Driver and Sin City from a narrative perspective by which I mean there is a story, or sense of story behind each characterbut in videogames, more often the ladies of the oldest profession are utilized as a sort of prop to contribute to the tone of the world, rather than as characters with their own unique biography.
A notable exception to this rule is Assassins Creed IIwhich saw the protagonist Ezio Auditore aided greatly by Paola and her courtesans. On the other side, sex appeal is frequently thrown at the player like meaningless word-vomit, purely to increase the marketability of the game and its characters.
Am I right, ladies?
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In videogames, violence is comparable to sex as apples are to ceiling fans — that is, not at all. Reason being is that the senseless acts of murder and mayhem players commit in games like GTA V are just that, senseless. It is the killing of virtual strangers who bear absolutely no weight on whatever story they occupy, whereas sex is a deeply intimate moment between characters. There is no need to further discredit such ridiculous accusations, but it does point out the general attitude of those who are unfamiliar with gaming — that playing games will teach children how to do whatever their character is doing, and in the case of Mass Effect this apparently meant that boys were being conditioned to treat women as sexual objects.
In reality the Mass Effect trilogy was a huge step forward for dealing with personal relationships and sex in a mature way. It allowed players to pursue complex romantic relationships over the course of three lengthy games, with choices to sustain a single partnership throughout the entire experience or break them off and begin again each game.
By the final installment, the ups and downs of Shepherds relationship with a single character can have a profound effect on his or her actions, and the sex that occurred was never explicit, because it never needed to be.
It was far more about the emotional payoff that the visual one. The trouble arises when it is assumed that videogame freedom implies absolute freedom, and that perhaps children will be exposed too, or rewarded for, acts of sexual assault.
As I covered in my article about videogame censorshipthis is a justified fear, but presently an invalid one as games very rarely delve into this sensitive issue. Games are often seen by parents as mere toys for children rather than the sophisticated experience they have become in recent decades.
To that end its fair enough to be concerned that will ask some difficult questions regarding sex, but these questions are healthy and should not be avoided.
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In the real world sex is often either trivialized, or taken far too seriously. People will go out with the purpose of hooking up with strangers and treat that as a stamp of approval that they had a good night. In videogames this does not occur because as in all art forms, everything means something. Whether a character sleeps with dozens of people, or none at all, that action speaks to the audience and translates into aspects of their very soul.
Art presents a dramatised view of reality, and as such can never be treated as realistic no matter how pretty the graphics or how confronting the themes. One thing is for sure; many stepping-stones must be crossed before artistic sexualisation will become appropriate, especially from a gameplay perspective press X to thrust, Y to change positions, B to bite neck?
The only thing i hope is that George RR Martin has some influence on the story and gives it his seal of approval for inclusion in canon.
Some stuff in Highgarden, or Lannisport would be interesting. Hmm I want a game centered around Dorne. Maybe we could play as Ellaria Sand or The Viper oooh that would be sick. If the ratings will be to our favor, we will get all the sex and gore requested. The game should follow a new character that story plays out during the events of the books, similar to what they did in TWD.
In terms of story the possibilities are endless Why not play a survivor of the red wedding who managed to sneak away and his trying to get back to winterfell? Why not create a story about a knight who revives honors to create his own house by The mad king only to play as his now disted family e.
This game is in very safe hands GRRM will have massive input over whatever it is so I predict that this game will easily be in the top charts days after realase.
I would like to see something taking place in the Free Cities, cause they could basically tell whatever story they want. Maybe the player could be a Red Priest and we could get some more insight into them. Convincing article, with some good ideas. Nice job. It would be cool if the game covered events before the timeline of the books.
I think that the game taking place during the same time at the books is unlikely; it runs the risk of conflicting with them if they do it that way. It seems that film industry is treating some more sophisticated gaming more seriously, including it in the realm of more narrative art forms. Do you think some day gaming will be viewed as a more interactive form of something like movies? Nobody would blink if this game treated sex in the exact same fashion as every other game has that came before it, I think.
People know what to expect. However, taking on a project that likely involves telling a new story is work for the insane. The fanbase is so active and sex simulator game of thrones that mucking it up would be a disaster.
I would love to play as Robert Baratheon in the early War, that would be awesome. Also, can men sleep with other men? Women with women will probably be a go because of the predominantly male gaming fanbase which is including more women, definitely, but still vastly biased. I would like to see some more narratives and stories- it will be good if the characters are further explored and if we could get to know about their past and thoughts, etc. I literally know nothing more about Game of Thrones than what information the author of this article provides here, but I have to agree that making it into a video game could change gaming forever.
That is in terms of sex. I loved the distinction you make between the intimacy of sex and the senseless nature of violence and how that can be a differentiation for acceptability. There is a clear sense that sex in video games is simply perversion, where as violence is a-ok. Violence becomes a compensation for sex, discrediting the potential perversion which may have arisen.
Largely due to how overblown the media can get over it. I could name some examples off the top of my head of recent controversies involving some very niche games that DARED to have scantily clad women.
In those same games there was no acts of sex at all. The hub bub was just how the women looked. Then again I could just be making a knee-jerk reaction to the knee-jerk reactions and could be completely wrong.
Well written article. Being a huge Mass Effect fan I really appreciated the references to the old scandal. But, I think it will. I love reading, films, and television, but it is only with a game that I can truly be a part of the narrative.
I think the problem with sex in video games is where the cut-off is with player involvement. Video games revolve around player controlled actions: walk here, hit this, kill him. On the other hand, it can feel exploitative now because of its reliance on cut-scenes and pre-determined action. Save my name,and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Prove you are human, type c a t s in singular form below:.
Support The Artifice on Patreon and enter our inner circle. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter. Game of Thrones Study telltale games. Posted on Nov 30, by. Lachlan Vass. Yo, what's up? I'm a journo from Australia staya trying to expose a local ring of bogan druglords, and also write about film, TV, games, literature, arts and maybe Anime. Want to write about Games or other art forms?
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