The controversy over Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 not coming to America through official localization channels has left a bad taste in the mouths of most common sense gamers and consumers. Most people who value the free market, freedom of speech and freedom of artistic integrity have become incensed that a vocal minority have kicked up such a fuss about sexism in gaming over the past two years that it’s starting to scare away Japanese publishers from bringing sexually suggestive games to America… or at least, that’s what Koei Tecmo’s community manager and European representatives have said. The funny thing is, you can’t say what I just wrote on some gaming and anime websites.
An article by Anime News Network’s Todd Ciolek was published on November 26th, 2015, detailing a number of news bits happening within the gaming sphere, ironically recalling the censorship that has befallen various other games over the past few weeks before tackling the biggest topic of discussion this week. One of the topics was that of Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 — and the controversy that kicked up after Play-Asia ran to the defense of gamers by admonishing “Social Justice Warriors” for their relentless attacks on gaming.
According to Ciolek, there is no “Social Justice Warrior” brigade out there and no “feminist cabal” attacking the gaming industry for being misogynistic and sexist…
“Many misguided souls point to some dastardly cabal of feminists and bloggers and Kotaku journalists who scheme to rob the world of fun, as though they’re the villains from Doozy Bots. Yet as far as I can tell, no one in the press specifically called for Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 to be martyred for the sake of game-industry sexism, and most of the negativity around Dead or Alive 5 is constrained to side comments in game reviews.”
First of all, there was a cabal that helped control media narratives known as the Game Journo Pros. Their antics are detailed on DeepFreeze.
Next up, there is an article by Engadget that was published on November 26th, 2015, the same day as Ciolek’s article, that says the game is “too sexist” for the West.
There is another article published by Metro.co.uk on November 26th, 2015 stating that the game is “creepy” and “sexist” and that it’s “rubbish and nobody wants it”.
Observer Voice published an article on November 27th, 2015 that almost mirrored the Metro article word for word as to why the game wasn’t coming to the West, stating that it was “sexist” and “creepy”.
Those are just a few examples out of the dozens of articles released this week, many from the mainstream media outlets decrying the series for being “sexist”, “misogynistic” and “creepy”. You can scroll through a load of those articles through this Google link here.
It’s the exact kind of media reaction Koei Tecmo said they wanted to avoid by not releasing it in the West. They felt that the sensibilities of Western media have become enveloped with too much focus on gender politics. When Play-Asia made the tweet in support of Dead or Alive Xtreme 3, they too were attacked by the same media attacking Koei Tecmo and their game.
Back in November of 2014, in an interview with Venture Beat, the producers at Team Ninja made it known that they were aware of #GamerGate and the media’s obsession with misogyny and sexism, but they were hoping that DOA 5: Last Round would break through the media’s shroud and surmount the media’s bully tactics. Sadly, it did not. This year, they decided they weren’t even going to bother.
Recently, many gamers have taken to forums and their favorite news outlets such as Anime News Netowrk to express concern over the issue of censorship.
When Play-Asia pointed to “SJWs” or “Social Justice Warriors” as the culprit for all of the outrage over the game skipping Western shores, many level-headed gamers agreed that people like Jonathan McIntosh and his ilk have proven “problematic” for gaming, especially when spreading propaganda against Dead or Alive and other violent and sexually suggestive games.
When attempting to make these points known on the Anime News Network’s forums – with some users actively blaming Social Justice Warriors for keeping Koei Tecmo’s game out of the West – a moderator going by the handle of Psycho 101 stepped in to state the following…
“[…] stop soap boxing on the topic of social justice you know whos. Your soap boxing on the topic is getting OT and just redundant. The term is also blocked for a reason so stop trying to get around the filter.
“That last part applies for everyone else as well. Any further discussion on that topic will be removed as it’s off topic and it also simply always ends in flame wars. So don’t do it. Thanks.”
Yes, the phrase “Social Justice Warrior” is prohibited and banned from being used on Anime News Network’s forums, even though the term was used in the article that the forum denizens were discussing.
According to the moderators, it’s just a phrase made up by #GamerGate to point to a non-existent boogeyman. There are no “feminist boogeymen”, they say. This is despite the fact that these same people recently went to the U.N., to decry #GamerGate and defame the gaming industry with labels of being “sexist” and “misogynistic”, which was even supported by media outlets like Pixelkin.
On NeoGaf [via Kotaku in Action] they’ve also taken up the argument that there was never a “boycott” and that there are no organized “SJWs” standing against Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 or Play-Asia. In fact, according to them, none of these individuals who identify as Social Justice Warriors want to take your games away, even though just last year those who identify as Social Justice Warriors literally did say they wanted to take Grand Theft Auto V away, and managed to successfully do so at some retailers in Australia.
Nevertheless, on the Anime News Network forums, the moderator warned users exercising common sense and facts to effectively step away from using common sense and facts. One of the users, the one warned about using “Social Justice Warriors”, even pointed out on VGChartz that Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 sells twice as much in the West as it does in Japan, so the argument of sales makes no sense and is counterproductive.
Nevertheless, one of the users attempting to deny the existence of Social Justice Warriors and the depressingly negative atmosphere they’ve created these past two years argued that situation is all made up. It’s almost like saying the Bolsheviks weren’t responsible for the Katyn massacres, and that the Polish just decided to die in a forest of their own volition. Going by the handle of Chagen46, he states…
“Best part about this “controversy” is that I have not seen a SINGLE Space Jam Wizard actually boycott or complain about DOAEX3.
“This entire tempest-in-a-teapot is a manufactured nontroversy. Given that it’s whipped all the reactionary manchildren into throwing a tantrum it’s worked pretty damn well.
“Gotta love how gamers love screaming at imaginary boogeymen.”
Let’s be clear. DOAX isn’t just gross, it’s also harmful because it reinforces and shapes dehumanizing views of women in the minds of men.
— Jonathan McIntosh (@radicalbytes) November 25, 2015