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This Week in Games - The Sudden Rise of Fanservice Games


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BodaciousSpacePirate
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 5:22 pm Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
I think Sakura Trick (the anime at least) was a financial failure so it seems like it didn't have much of any support, be it gay or straight fans.


The manga is still going, but I don't think my point (which is that you don't need to be gay to want to play games/watch shows/read comics with gay people in them) really hinged on my specific example. I don't need to be Japanese to want to watch a show with Japanese people in it, or a doctor to want to watch shows about doctors, etc., etc.
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Estelle the White Mage



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 5:28 pm Reply with quote
I don't think there were enough fan service games released this year
My bank account still has money in it.
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Chester McCool



Joined: 06 Jan 2016
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 7:47 pm Reply with quote
BodaciousSpacePirate wrote:
I find it absolutely hysterical that you seem to think that only gay people want to see gay characters in fiction, especially on an anime board. Do you think that Sakura Trick was made for lesbian audiences?


Well duh, obviously yaoibait and yuribait stuff do well with straight people who wanna see cute guys and gals be gay, but those always get dismissed when cited as gay representation. People usually mean non-objectifying stories that arent made for the pleasure of straight people. That goes over about as well as citing Senran Kagura as an example of strong female characters.
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Afezeria



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 8:43 pm Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
...
That is sad, because I'm a big yuri fan but hey, I'm not blaming anyone because it's their money and they can choose what to spent it on. I'm seriously hoping that the two upcoming yuri anime (Citrus and NTR whatever) manage to obtain good sales but I'm not holding my breath. There's seems to be more supports for shounen-ai/yaoi material in general.
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leafy sea dragon



Joined: 27 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:01 am Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
Not sure I'm understanding you here. Have you ever looked at Harlequin romance book covers? Cause I'm pretty sure if you did then the dude was shirtless, with the intent of being sexy in appearance to appeal to the purchasers of such novels.


The thing is that with these Harlequin romances (and similar stuff), the man is shirtless not solely to be shirtless. In these stories, the man's actions are the central traits of him as a character, and the illustration is done as such not only to provide a frame of reference to what he looks like, but promises to potential readers about what they can hope to read about between the covers.

In other words, while they are highly sexualized, they are not objects. They are almost always written highly unrealistically, but the authors are still at least trying to pass them off as believable people.

Megiddo wrote:
Isn't that because men just don't care? Men see Harlequin romance novels as fantasy and don't care if nearly all of them feature buff dudes in some manner of undress on the cover. Men don't bother to complain about someone else's fantasy. That's why there's nowhere near the amount of flak.


They DO complain about other people's fantasies, which is why there is so much anger and resentment with this topic to begin with. Or at least, I see a kind of resentment some guys have when girls fawn over some famous/fictional attractive man. Notice how media popular with teenage girls that feature attractive men are typically the ones most often mocked and ridiculed by guys? If it isn't N*Sync or Twilight, it's Titanic or Justin Bieber. (Some of these have since been vindicated, but personally, that just shows that guys of their own time were too blinded in seeing people like Justin Timberlake or Leonardo diCaprio as rivals to see their actual talents as entertainers.)

Tuor_of_Gondolin wrote:
Anyway, I've gotten off track here. I don't know where this "rise of fanservice" is coming from, because I'm not seeing it. I do understand that companies often care for nothing but profit, and so are trying to make their games more profitable by trying to appeal to a more "mainstream" audience. I doubt that most "mainstream" people care all that much about video games, or will spend money on them routinely over time. They may dabble in them now and then, and have a system for when the urge strikes, but they're not very committed to video games and probably never will be. In other words, there's a diminishing returns thing that kicks in once you aim for a "mainstream" audience, and if you push too hard in an attempt to appeal to it, you're going to lose your serious gamer audience: either they'll become mainstream, too, or they'll find something else to do with their time, and in either case they'll be spending less money and have less interest in buying games. That would lead to a decline in the number of serious gamers, but maybe that's what some people want.


Well, if other media can go mainstream, video games can too. I'd say they already have, with stuff like the NES, the Wii, and mobile gaming, but it's that the industry itself either has trouble understand how to stay in the mainstream or are not too interested in being in the mainstream to begin with.

Seeing all the people around mepull out their phones and start playing some random freemium game waiting for their food or for the nurse to tell them to see the doctor or some other thing, I'd say that's pretty mainstream as it is.

Chester McCool wrote:
It sounds like you want media to provide an escapism from real life for you, because in reality, less than 2% of the population is gay. Expecting companies to pander to 2% of the market instead of 98% of the market is illogical, and no sane company would ever do such a thing.


Nah, I'd say the games aimed at the hardest of the hardcore are already pushing for a fraction of the market that small or even smaller. Who plays a Guilty Gear game, for instance, except for longtime fighting game fans with a competitive streak and demand microscopically precise character balance? How well does a Guilty Gear game sell compared to, say, a Pokémon game?

Chester McCool wrote:
Star Wars didn't bomb, but then again you can do anything with Star Wars and it'll still sell. Usually companies do the bait-and-switch with male-to-minorities because it has a higher chance of not eating dirt as an original IP would. See: comic books replacing heroes with minority versions rather than making new characters.


What causes a movie to bomb is the same now as it was before: Clumsy marketing, bad timing, and bad writing. Ghostbusters 2016 bombed because of bad writing. The Force Awakens and Rogue One succeeded because of good writing.

If you don't like the practice of changing a character's race and/or gender, that's fine with me, but I don't care, and I think most others don't either. I watched Doctor Strange and knew they made The Ancient One a woman and Mordo black. I liked it anyway, as I thought the story was entertaining, as were all of the characters, including The Ancient One and Mordo. I treated the movie as if it were doing its own thing (which it was).

Hollywood has rarely been faithful to the source materials, and the few times it has (Psycho, Watchmen, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), audiences wind up hating it. The way I see it is that they can be as unfaithful as they need to be, as long as the end result is fun to watch.
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Megiddo



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:27 am Reply with quote
leafy sea dragon wrote:
They DO complain about other people's fantasies, which is why there is so much anger and resentment with this topic to begin with. Or at least, I see a kind of resentment some guys have when girls fawn over some famous/fictional attractive man. Notice how media popular with teenage girls that feature attractive men are typically the ones most often mocked and ridiculed by guys? If it isn't N*Sync or Twilight, it's Titanic or Justin Bieber.

But are they demanding the complete cessation of such titles? No. Mocking isn't the best reaction, but it's nowhere near as bad as the people who are forcibly attempting to censor creative talent solely to serve their own sense of morality or justice.
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Levitz9



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:39 am Reply with quote
They used the word "niche" a lot in this article; I think that's important.

The fandoms behind games like Senran Kagura are loyal and vocal, but they're also small. In its lifetime, a game like GalGun dream of selling 250,000 units in their lifetime. For all of the griping that the removal of the petting feature in Fire Emblem Fates was gonna drive away hardcore fans, the games sold just over that amount in the first three days of their release--and more in the months since.

The problem with fanservice games isn't moral or economic, it's their fans. They think they're the victim of some cultural change when really, they're a small niche that's got a bit of an entitlement problem and probably needs a bigger view of the world before they think artists are being assaulted (especially since they tend to turn on saidsame artists on a dime--see the Skullgirls crew).

I like boobs. Heck, I'm this close to buying Senran Kagura: Bon Appetite. But at the same time, I've spent enough time playing games to know that DOA Extreme 2 was a joke: there wasn't an outrage over it, and there didn't have to be because the moment people saw the jiggle physics they just shrugged and muttered, "Japan...". So when people who like GalGul complain that they're being targetted or that their rights are at stake, I roll my eyes. There's no other way to respond to such childishness.
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leafy sea dragon



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:42 am Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
But are they demanding the complete cessation of such titles? No. Mocking isn't the best reaction, but it's nowhere near as bad as the people who are forcibly attempting to censor creative talent solely to serve their own sense of morality or justice.


Maybe you didn't see them, but I did. Plenty of death threats too, which, in a sense, is a call to their complete cessation too.
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Megiddo



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:02 am Reply with quote
Levitz9 wrote:
But at the same time, I've spent enough time playing games to know that DOA Extreme 2 was a joke: there wasn't an outrage over it, and there didn't have to be because the moment people saw the jiggle physics they just shrugged and muttered, "Japan...". So when people who like GalGul complain that they're being targetted or that their rights are at stake, I roll my eyes. There's no other way to respond to such childishness.

I think you should read about a very real occurrence where an artist's work was censored due to an outrage over a female character's design on the box cover art.

Thinking that there wouldn't be any outrage over a North American release of DOAX3 isn't a particularly well-grounded opinion.

@leafyseadragon You may have, but without any sort of source to back up what you claim to have seen it doesn't really help much.
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BodaciousSpacePirate
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:25 am Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
I think you should read about a very real occurrence where an artist's work was censored due to an outrage over a female character's design on the box cover art.


Wow, a company asked one of their artists to modify artwork on a poster because they thought it would make them more money during a Kickstarter campaign? What an injustice! Rolling Eyes I have no sympathy for people who whine on DeviantArt when their bosses tell them that a project they worked on needed to be modified to better suit potential clients. That's part of business.
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Megiddo



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:33 am Reply with quote
Actually, no. It had nothing to do about making more money. It had everything to do with the threatening letters and hate mails that were received.

There's an interview where it states that it was only a tiny minority that complained and that the artwork had been extensively used to promote the game a year before the Kickstarter even launched.

My favorite from that interview is this quote regarding how he thinks this should be worked out:
Quote:
But don’t get me wrong, it’s undeniable true that the gaming environment has been a boys club for a long time and I see no reason at all not to invite women to game either. I think this is an admirable goal. Seeing that media is infinite and developers can expand on it infinitely I’m convinced the tactics by which game diversity is achieved are very wrong. I say this because giving women the games they like should not result in taking away or moderating the games the boys like. I think it’s cheap and weak to attack existing franchises, shame them in what they are doing and force through guilt to change their content. Feminism has shown what women can do, that they are strong and no less than men, so why don’t they prove it by coming up with their own franchises? We’ve seen this happen in television and it worked, Sex and the City has proven this.

This is exactly right. We see it now in the current anime market where for a long, long time late-night anime was almost 100% targeting men. And how about now? Yuri on Ice, Uta no Prince-sama, and Touken Ranbu, all series that primarily targeted women will be some of the top selling series from all of 2016. Women went out and supported material that was made for them. They didn't go out and shout how sexist To Love Ru Darkness is and demand that the women all be properly dressed. The same can be done with video games.
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BodaciousSpacePirate
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:56 am Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
There's an interview where it states that it was only a tiny minority that complained and that the artwork had been extensively used to promote the game a year before the Kickstarter even launched.


I'm going to take any article that starts with the line

Quote:
#GamerGate has been slandered in the media and defamed by Wikipedia.


with an enormous grain of salt, but fine, it's clear we have very different views about this issue. I doubt anyone with strong opinions one way or another on this topic are going to convert each other, though, so maybe we should all just agree that fanservice is awesome and shouldn't go away, and leave it at that?
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Tuor_of_Gondolin
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 4:02 am Reply with quote
leafy sea dragon wrote:
Well, if other media can go mainstream, video games can too. I'd say they already have, with stuff like the NES, the Wii, and mobile gaming, but it's that the industry itself either has trouble understand how to stay in the mainstream or are not too interested in being in the mainstream to begin with.

I'm glad you brought up the Wii. The Wii was the beneficiary of a wide-spread fad. But when the fad was over, did those who picked up the Wii keep playing it? Feel free to check out Nintendo's finances since the Wii and you'll have your answer.
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Stuart Smith



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 4:40 am Reply with quote
Megiddo wrote:
This is exactly right. We see it now in the current anime market where for a long, long time late-night anime was almost 100% targeting men. And how about now? Yuri on Ice, Uta no Prince-sama, and Touken Ranbu, all series that primarily targeted women will be some of the top selling series from all of 2016. Women went out and supported material that was made for them. They didn't go out and shout how sexist To Love Ru Darkness is and demand that the women all be properly dressed. The same can be done with video games.


I suppose that's why the genres shoujo and josei exist, unlike in American media. In addition to things like otome games for women. Women have been involved with anime/manga since the 1960s. I suppose the fact American is a culture is used to open criticism means people would rather sit and complain until other people do things for them, while Japanese women created the content they wanted to see and didn't wait. It's also probably why I've seen a few comments on these forums on why shounen manga doesn't make "better" female characters to attract more women. The idea of target demographics are foreign to a lot of people. When a Japanese game developer said a game was made for men and not women it caused controversy in the west.

Fire Emblem If also got a lot of controversy which resulted in censorship in America. I'm not sure if Levitz9/BodaciousSpacePirate's argument is people never complain about these issues, but it definitely happens. There's plenty of examples to draw from, which many Japanese devs have spoken about in dealing with the west.

-Stuart Smith
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leafy sea dragon



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:17 am Reply with quote
Tuor_of_Gondolin wrote:
I'm glad you brought up the Wii. The Wii was the beneficiary of a wide-spread fad. But when the fad was over, did those who picked up the Wii keep playing it? Feel free to check out Nintendo's finances since the Wii and you'll have your answer.


Fad or not, that's besides the point. My point was that video games can go mainstream, and the Wii did that, even if temporarily. Much of the expanded audience went to mobile gaming, which is undoubtedly mainstream.

Megiddo wrote:
@leafyseadragon You may have, but without any sort of source to back up what you claim to have seen it doesn't really help much.


All right, fair enough.
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