Category Archives: Video Games

The World I Dream For

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Hello, friends. I write you with a heavy heart. I know you are tired of reading about this subject, but it needs to be repeated until it is actually heard. There is a world I want to be a part of and that place is one where I am accepted because of me and not judged because of my gender. Bear with me please. I am one of those women who was afraid for a while to call herself a feminist based on the stigma that is (unjustly) associated with it. I tried out other terms such as “humanist.” Until I realized that wasn’t helping anything I was appeasing people and hiding behind a name out of an irrational fear that that tricky “FEM” would cause such unbearable trouble. One day I woke up and was like “FUCK IT.” It was like a weight was lifted. Until I was approached and asked if I was a lesbian or if I hated men. Of course not. When  I dislike people it is not based on gender, skin color, sexuality, or religion. Most of the time it’s because that person is an asshole. I know you are wondering why is she rambling about this. Well, due to the fact I was born with a vagina, I have encountered some disturbing things when it comes to my hobbies. Particularly in the gaming world.

Let me give you a few examples of what I mean based on my own personal experiences:

  1. More times than I can count, when I have told people of my passion towards gaming, the responses have been off-putting.  “Is this because you are trying to find a new way to get closer to men?” “ What games do you EVEN play?! Farmville? Candy Crush?” “OOOOOhhhh that makes sense. RPGs are for girls” “So was your favorite Final Fantasy the one with all the girls? You know where they had multiple costumes?” This is only a fragment of what was thought to be appropriate to say to my face. Never have I thought to ask someone “Oh, because you have a penis that means you are really into racing games, sports, or cars? Right? Because those are your only interests?”

  2. Online I have joined discussions on games in public forums and been dismissed because of being born a woman. I have had people send me personal messages finding it appropriate to degrade or sexually harass me. Luckily, I haven’t been violently threatened (as many women have) with rape or physical harm. My opinions have been dismissed with “What do you know? You’re a girl!”

  3. I avoid cosplay because I have a fear that if I dressed as some of my favorite characters people would take that as an invitation to cat call or, WORSE, touch me. Only because I dared to show my cleavage, legs, or stomach. Let me be clear IT IS NEVER OKAY TO TOUCH ANYONE OF ANY GENDER BASED ON HOW THEY ARE DRESSED. I have a male friend who was harassed based on a how he chose to cosplay. No deserves to be groped because you have the hots for the character they are portraying. Nor is it okay to slut shame anyone because they altered the costume to what made them feel was more to their taste. It isn’t Slutty Whatever, it is a personal twist on a favorite character.

I could continue on for pages… but no one needs that either. So what I yearn for more playable heroines. How is this harmful? Women gamers take up 48%  of our culture that’s a lot of ladies “pretending to attract men.” Shouldn’t we be heard? Why is it so easy to dismiss us?

I’ve also been so lucky. I have friends who support my hobbies never judging me based on how I look. I have a father who never held me back because of being a daughter. I have a partner who encourages me to be myself. I am truly blessed in this aspect. As well thank every one of them for seeing me as a human. I love you.  Is it so much to wish and hope for a world full of more men like them? I don’t think so.

The Future of the Culture Wars is Here, and it’s a Goddamn Nightmare

Gamergate is a sustained and terrifyingly effective terrorist campaign. I doubt that’s a particularly revelatory statement to anybody who regularly reads this site, as Gamervescent fans do not tend to be massively bigoted, entitled douchelords with a bizarre immunity to cognitive dissonance.

This was the impossibly stupid beginning of an impossibly stupid and literally unbelievable sequence of events,” and it’s real fucking life. We are living in an unlikely sci-fi dystopia in which women—real breathing thinking feeling human people—are bombarded with rape and murder threats, driven from their homes, forced to cancel public appearances due to threat of massacre, because they talked about video games. It is astonishing. It is impossibly stupid.

It’s reality.

I highly recommend Kyle Wagner’s piece on the entire ugly series of events at Deadspin. The future of the culture wars is indeed here, and it’s not going away. It won’t disappear if we ignore it. It is escalating, it is unacceptable, it’s hard to know how best to fight it—and by “it” I mean “them,” the people who are throwing a massive temper tantrum of unprecedented proportions over the mere idea that their self-perceived dominion over a form of entertainment media might be threatened. And the implication for the future, given the success of their harassment campaign against individuals and the unwillingness of the gaming industry to even acknowledge their actions, let alone attempt to stop them, is terrifying:

What we’re seeing now is a rehearsal, where the mechanisms of a toxic and inhumane politics are being tested and improved. Tomorrow’s Lee Atwater will work through sock puppets on IRC. Tomorrow’s Sister Souljah will get shouted down with rape threats. Tomorrow’s Tipper Gore will make an inexplicably popular YouTube video. Tomorrow’s Willie Horton ad will be an image macro, tomorrow’s Borking a doxing, tomorrow’s Moral Majority a loose coalition of DoSers and robo-petitioners and scat-GIF trolls—all of them working feverishly in service of the old idea that nothing should ever really change.

VGHS Season 3

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VGHS! Final season!! First episode free here!!! Buy the whole season for $15 here!!!!

If you have never watched VGHS before, do yourself a favor and start with Season 1. Also! I just discovered that you can actually play Ki’s VGHS game from Season 2.

  • man I love Ki Swan so freakin’ much
  • omg that scene from Season 2 where Ki and The Law trash Ted and Brian’s room
  • Brian D looks like he’s grown up to be a surprisingly good kisser
  • DRIFT KING!!
  • okay I’m gonna go watch the new ep now

This show makes me laugh harder than anything else I’ve ever seen, save Top Secret.

ace

Refugees Taking Up Too Much Space on the Citadel

If you’re a fan of Men Taking Up Too Much Space on the Train and Mass Effect 3, you’ll love my new blog idea called “Refugees Taking Up Too Much Space on the Citadel.” I know! Aliens are so rude.

Let’s check out some of the latest culprits, shall we?

Just look at this Batarian. What has four eyes and doesn’t give up seats for pregnant ladies? THIS GUY.

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Total jerk.

And how about these asari? They’re taking up five seats all by themselves! Oh, your home planet is overrun by Reapers? Poor you. Maybe think about somebody besides yourselves next time. Your moms didn’t raise you to force the elderly to stand during their entire visit to the Citadel holding area for refugees.

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Shepard gives the side-eye to some jerks.

And this Turian! Are you saving that other seat for someone or can a lady carrying all these shopping bags sit down already?

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What’s in those suitcases anyway? All your dead relatives from Palaven?

Inktober Sketches

I’ve been undergoing a somewhat masochistic artistic exercise this month known as Inktober. The goal is to do a finished ink drawing every day of the month of October. It’s not so bad, really. I’ve done a similar, yet more stressful and soul-crushing, thing for the past two years. This is a walk in the park compared to doing a complete comic page a day. And to make it more fun, I’ve decided to do nothing but fan art, which is something I almost never do!

So, uh, because Jennifer suggested I do some stuff for Gamervescent, here are four video game Inktober sketches I’ve done so far:

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The Medium Scary Haunting

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Bethany is currently enjoying herself (presumably) at New York Comic Con (here’s hoping she gets to sniff John Barrowman again this year!) and is also reluctant to pimp her own genius on every available platform on the entire internet as I feel is warranted, so I am telling you: if you want to live your best life, you should visit Welcome to Bethville and read her latest Frightening Friday tale, The Medium Scary Haunting.

Just how scary is The Medium Scary Haunting? Let Bethany explain:

Medium scary means that you will probably not have to prepare for fear the way you would with a super scary story. A super scary story might cause you to pee your pants or lose consciousness or run in fear. But a medium scary story means you’ll only do those things halfway. You might lightly tinkle your pants, swoon, or prance away in mild alarm. You might even sleep peacefully tonight, instead of lying awake staring at the dark ceiling of your bedroom, hoping you’re all alone. So, rather than turning on all the lights and grabbing your teddy bear right now for comfort, as you would with a super scary story, you will only need to light a few candles and hold the hand of a distant cousin before you read…

Halloween

As of today, Thursday October 9, we have 21 days left to prepare for the best and most glorious day of the year, Halloween, and I am still trying to decide what I will wear.

Halloween is a big-ass deal in my household. For one thing, it’s almost my birthday (I squeaked over the wire and was born just after midnight, so I typically claim both Halloween and my official D.O.B. of November 1st as my own), and more to the point, my husband and I just happen to be people who like to adorn ourselves in makeup and costumes and attend raucous Dionysian dance parties while we are so attired. Neither of us are really into the zombie/monster makeup look, so characters from media we enjoy tend to figure heavily into our playing-dress-up rotation. This photo, for example, was taken shortly after we met and began dating:

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Late to the Game [Trailer] Once Again…

I pride myself on keeping up with the latest news, being on top of the stories, and showing up where the action is to get the scoop. But sometimes I miss things, like hilarious fake trailers for video game movies. I discovered this one this morning, only a year and several months after it was posted on YouTube. A trailer for a fake Candy Crush movie. It’s too good.

Bonus. After that, I watched this fake trailer for the BioShock movie that never was, and I was surprised by how good it is.

Hack the Planet

I love the tile-swapping, pipe-building hacking minigame in BioShock with a fervent, overwhelming love. Does it get repetitive? Yes. Have I ever been troubled by that fact? No. I find it soothing, a welcome respite from fielding attacks by Splicers. Something about October makes me want to play BioShock again, so here I sit, letting my autohack tools rust in my inventory, hacking every hackable object in my path.

Hack Rapture! Hack the planet!! Pipe-tile-swapping FOREVER!!!!

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