ONTD Political

Some people are gay in space. Get over it!

1:09 pm - 04/17/2012
It must be awful, being a homophobe. Having to spend all that time obsessing about what gay people might be doing with their genitals. Seeing it in your mind, over and over again, in high-definition close-up. Bravely you masturbate, to make the pictures go away, but to no avail. They're seared onto your mental membranes. Every time you close your eyes, an imaginary gay man's imaginary penis rises from the murk, bowing ominously in your direction, sensing your discomfort. Laughing. Mocking. Possibly even winking. How dare they, this man and his penis? How dare they do this to you?

Obviously you can't fight the big gay penis in your head. It has no physical form, so you can't get a grip on it, much as you'd like to. You'd love to grab it and throttle it until it splutters its last. That might bring you closure. But no. So you do the next best thing. You condemn homosexuals in the real world. Maybe if they could just stop all this "being gay" business for 10 minutes, you'd get some respite from that scary headcock. It might shrivel away completely, leaving nothing behind. Except maybe a nice bit of bum.

No, dammit! Forget I said that! No bum either!

Of course sometimes the act of condemning homosexuals in the real world overlaps with the imaginary realm. Over the past few weeks, games company Electronic Arts has been subjected to a letter-writing campaign from idiots outraged by its decision to allow players to define their characters as gay in a Star Wars game. The Florida Family Association says, "children and teens, who never thought any way but heterosexual, are now given a choice to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender" – adding that even if they chose to be straight, they would still "be forced to deal with lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender characters chosen by other players". Personal choice and co-operation: two appalling threats to our youth.

They also claim "there were no LGBT characters in any of the Star Wars movies". I don't know which wacky re-cut version of Star Wars they've been watching, but I saw the original when I was about six years old and even then I was struck by how outrageously camp C3PO is. He was a gilded John Inman in space. And what about Luke Skywalker? Apart from briefly kissing his own sister, he shows no interest in women whatsoever. The first film is a tender gay parable in which Luke falls in love with Alec Guinness and gradually "comes out" as a Jedi. The final scene oozes symbolism: having penetrated the Death Star's trench in his phallic spacecraft, he closes his eyes, submits to his true inner instinct and triumphantly blasts his X-Wing's seed into an anus-like aperture, causing an orgasmic eruption that changes his universe for ever. It's hard to see how they could make Star Wars any gayer, unless they gave the Millennium Falcon a handlebar moustache.

But hang on, some of you are saying, this is a video game we're talking about. Isn't this gay content a bit shoehorned in? Sonic the Hedgehog never agonised over his sexual identity. He was too busy sprinting through a rainbow-coloured landscape leaping at rings. True, but that was in 1991 – which in "technology years" was about nine millennia ago. It's like comparing a cave painting with a surround-sound 3D movie. EA's Star Wars title in question is an MMORPG or massively multiplayer online role-playing game with more than a million subscribers: real people playing and interacting with each other in real-time, and hey, statistically, at least three of those people are going to be gay. The least you can do is let them reflect that in the characters they pick.

But wait: there's even more gay content in another EA space epic, Mass Effect 3, which to the uninitiated is a bit like playing through an entire Star Trek boxset. It's bold space hokum and it's great fun – and just like Star Trek, it includes a range of potential love interests for the main character. Previous Mass Effect titles have let you play as a woman and – gasp – seduce other women: this final instalment is the first to give players the option playing a man who woos men. Play your cards right (or play your dialogue tree options right) throughout hours of gameplay and you'll be rewarded with a short, chaste love scene in which two bare-chested men kiss and cuddle in bed.

Players have complained bitterly about the ending of Mass Effect 3 – not because of the potential for homosexual love, but because they found the narrative underwhelming. The game has a variety of different endings, depending on your decisions: some have moaned that none of the possible endings are happy or satisfying enough. In fact, they've moaned so much, EA has hastily released an additional ending free-of-charge, so these players can experience "further closure".

I can't work out if that's depressing or sweet. On the one hand, they're spoiled little emperors with a mind-boggling sense of entitlement: it's one thing to be disappointed by the end of a story, but another to demand the author sits down and writes you a new one RIGHT NOW. You need "further closure"? What's wrong with you? But on the other hand, it's a sign that players sometimes invest so much of themselves into the characters they play, they care about them to a degree that should make any author jealous. Sneerers will doubtless leave comments about "saddoes" and "shut-ins", oblivious that by doing so, they too are playing a character in an immense MMORPG called the internet. Face it: you've even chosen a nickname and an avatar just to join in.

Allowing players to identify their characters as homosexual isn't, as the anti-gay campaigners claim, a tokenistic novelty, but an unavoidable consequence of the fascinating evolution of video games. Not that there's much point explaining that to them. They don't believe in evolution either. And they wouldn't hear you anyway over the thunderous roar of dicks screaming for ever in their frightened mind's ear.

homasse 17th-Apr-2012 01:13 pm (UTC)
Oh, people pitched FITS that male gay had been added to ME3 (the les-yay in the first 2? That was OK. But broShep wanting to bone other men> Heavens forfend!)

But then the game came out and people played to the end, and all the EWW BUTTSEX ICK got left in the nerdrage "BETRAYAL!!!!" dust.

Plus, as always, because whenever I hear about people ranting about teh gehy in EA games:

Bioware Neglected Their Main Demographic: The Straight Male Gamer

NEGL, this was what got me buying BioWare games in the first place.
curseangel 17th-Apr-2012 04:57 pm (UTC)
Oh, god, that link. I only got about halfway through, uggggh.

Now all I can think of is the argument I had with my brother wherein he argued that straight dudes comprise pretty much all video game fans, that there are "very few" woman gamers, and thus it's totally okay to include as much sexism as the companies want because ~they're just aiming for the most players~. He refused to believe me when I told him that numbers currently suggest women make up probably at least 50% of gamers these days, and comprise the majority of gamers if you include casual gaming (like hidden object, time management, etc. games such as Diner Dash).

I'm seriously considering calling him today and trolling him about the gay options in ME3 just to get his reaction.
kaisenji 17th-Apr-2012 05:28 pm (UTC)
curseangel 17th-Apr-2012 08:37 pm (UTC)
I might yet! It depends on if he's living at home or not, lol. He's been in and out for a couple of months now (SHOCKINGLY, he keeps losing the girlfriends he goes to live with, I can't imagine how/why) and I don't know his cell number, nor would I want to imply I cared enough to actually call him specifically, lol.

But if I get him on the phone I am so doing it.
caketime 17th-Apr-2012 08:19 pm (UTC)

etc., etc., I've heard it all before. And then I started playing The Binding of Isaac and now I'm a ~newb. Aw, how nice, shut the fuck up. >_>

curseangel 17th-Apr-2012 08:36 pm (UTC)
Oh god, ugh, yeah. I've been told countless times that not enjoying war games or fighting games means I'm ~not a real gamer. Also if you prefer RPGs you're not a gamer. Or if you prefer JRPGs. Or if you prefer games where the women don't wear chainmail bikinis and/or barely straps of cloth. Or if your opinions or preferences differ at all from the macho straight white cis men's opinions and preferences.

It's such bullshit. I hate it.
caketime 17th-Apr-2012 09:00 pm (UTC)
Yesssss! It's so tiring and I don't have the energy to fight against it. So I stick to secretly playing games on steam or nintendo or the horrors of horrors, I play facebook games! Compared to "typical" gaming culture FB games offer leisurely fun in a non-judgmental setting where I can communicate with friends.

But obviously people who play FB games have no clue and it's only right to judge the fuck out of them to shame them into playing it secretly.
w/e, it's a lose-lose situation.
curseangel 17th-Apr-2012 10:44 pm (UTC)
Seriously, the only time I even try is with my brother, but that's just because it pisses me off to be related to such a misogynistic asshole. :|

I play casual games on Shockwave -- my aunt has an Unlimited account there because the only games she plays are casual games -- and I have a serious addiction to any and all cooking games. They're just fun time-wasters, ffs. I don't see why it has to be some competition about which games are moar srs.

It really is :\ There's unfortunately just no doing to these kinds of assholes.
homasse 17th-Apr-2012 11:42 pm (UTC)
The best trolling on the subject was this, Mass Effect 3: A Gay Erotic Love Story (NSFW) - it was just amazing. XD
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