Penny Arcade gets one right

Via Baste Me With Your Corrosive Saliva, I find out that someone is complaining that straight male gamers don’t get enough love in Dragon Age 2.

That sound you just heard? That was my head exploding.

As one of these aforementioned straight male gamers, it has never occurred to me that the problem with gaming is that I’m not catered to enough. The entire genre is practically defined by its catering to the straight male gamer. Seriously, next time you go to a game store, pick one of the big-name games off of the shelf at random. Any one, it hardly matters. That game you picked? Caters to the straight male gamer.

The specific complaints leveled at DA2 in this case are twofold: (1) there’s too many men who are ready to get their lovin’ on with you, and (2) the female romance options are too “exotic”. Option (1) is easily remedied: shut them down. If Anders annoys you, then be an asshole to him. (This is how I recommend dealing with Zevran in DA:O.) Option (2) is akin to complaining that your food has too much delicious flavor and you’d like something more bland and predictable, but if that really is a problem for you then I guess I agree that you might not like the game. What’s really astounding, though, is the level of blatant entitlement that these complaints display. It’s not enough to have romance options for your particular preference. It’s also necessary that your specific expectation of straight, white feminine sexuality be met–a sultry darkie and an elf are not good enough–and that the options you don’t want to see are completely removed from the game so you don’t have to think about them.

Tycho ended his post with these words:

I just want to shake these people sometimes. Hey. That feeling, the one that you’re feeling?

That is the game.


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