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Who is the enemy in video games - a discussion

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Pretty much just the opposite. You do realize that reactionaries inverse actual happenings as a gaslighting tactic right?

I didn't drive into the back of your stopped vehicle because I wasn't paying attention. You just backed into me. Remember?
Are you seriously going to sit there and argue African Americans, while in the pursuit of civil rights, were not accused of victimizing white women as a way of demonizing them? Were not accused of being violent to the point that their very presence was viewed as dangerous?

And the strange thing is, most of the accusations I see of gaslighting usually come from people who do not like it when something they have said is called out; legitimate gaslighting takes some actual time to do and is not limited just to saying "oh, hey, this statement you have made is completely bonkers." And, frankly, it is offensive that you would misuse an accusation of gaslighting in that way, given the very real psychological harm the tactic causes even when it is not successfully completed; you are not psychologically harmed on that level by me pointing out two sentences are of the same nature as an earlier and much darker argument, or you would not have had the psychological fortitude to respond in the manner you had.

Yeah, I admit my response was quite sarcastic toward the end, but I also wanted to point something important out: Using the same old arguments once used to oppress, no matter the intention behind making the arguments, is not going to do your stance any favors. There are still plenty of those old-time racists alive today, and some of them have passed their knowledge down; people are going to recognize those arguments for the origin they have and not see what you have to say in a good light as a result.
 

the8thark

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A centrist is someone who supports universal healthcare but want tighter immigration control. Left wing on one issue, right wing on another. A centrist is someone who wants free university tuition for all, and supports the right of citizens to own guns. Left wing on one issue, right wing on another. Centrists pick sides. The thing that makes them centrists is that they don't always pick the same side. What the hell is an "extreme" centrist? Would you even be able to explain to me what that means without sounding ridiculous?
That's in the US point of view which si very different to the Westminister definition of a centralist.

In the Westminster system, those on the left want more government control. The further left you go, the more they want controlled or run by the government. Those on the right want more things run by the people with less government control. That's the high level definition of them both but you can dive deeper and find quite a few exceptions.
A good exception is the conservative vs liberal debate. In the Westminster system both the conservatives and liberals are on the right. The Conservatives are close middle divide (on the eft side of the right). The Liberals are centre right. By centre right we mean, not close to the right/left boundary and not on the extreme right. They are in the middle of the right side.

A centralist in the westminster system has a totally different meaning. It means someone in the middle of their side. Not someone hovering over the right/left divide in the middle. We call those who hover over the right/left divide in the middle, swing voters.
In the Westminister system someone who wants a universal healthcare system (like Australian medicare or the UK NHS) but also wants tighter immigration) would easily be classified as a conservative. They want some issues controlled by the government, but they also want their government to put their own citizens first. A liberal would probably still want both they they'd want Medicare or NHS more provatised so there is more competition between the different medical practitioners.
I'm squarely conservative on this. I think Medicare and the NHS as they exist now are brilliant and work so well. I also do believe immigration should only be considered after the needs of the people already in the country are met first. This can not happen with the currently high levels of immigration so it needs to be lowered.

Australia is quite unique in a way as our main right wing party is both conservative and liberal (though not extreme at all). Most right wing parties of the world are conservative or liberal or extreme.
Our left wing parties are the same as the rest of the world though. Labor are centre left, and the Greens are far left.
 

Hero of Pizza Time

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Both the Nazi reigm and the Communist regimes of the past have murdered millions of people. Though there are many games where killing Nazis is the main point of the game. However there are few games where killing Communists is the main point of the game. I can't even think of any game where Communists are the enemy.
Goldeneye 007 was a pretty amazing game and the Soviets were the villains in that game. I've never played Metal Gear Solid but I'm pretty sure that you fought Communists in that one too. Contra has you fighting against Communists. It seems to me that there are a lot of games about fighting Communists (which is a good thing IMO), especially in the 80s and 90s. It's all about what's relevant at the time really.

Those who reply to this arguement by saying Nazis are worse are actually factually incorrect. From my rough memory, the Nazi regime killed over 6 million people and the Communist regimes have killed over 20 million people. I don't remember if the 20 million figure is only Soviet Communism or if it includes Chinese Communism and the smaller COmmunist states as well.
I am not condoning either regime though. Both inflicted unspeakable horror on humanity
I don't know if one can be "factually incorrect" about how evil someone or something is, as there are not units measuring that. I'm not a moral relativist (I'm religious actually) but it's impossible for humans to put a value on evil. But yes, both the Communists and the Nazis are heinous abominations that call themselves "parties." The Nazis did not just kill 6 million people; that number accounts for Jews killed in concentration camps. However, there were also 5-6 million non-Jews who were targeted for being gay or gypsy or crippled, and those who tried to save others from the Nazis were also put in camps and killed. They are also discovering that the Nazis may have killed around 2 million more Jews by shooting. So that's about 14 million killed in the Holocaust, but then Hitler invaded most of Europe and started WW2. The death count for all of the Nazi invasions combined would probably be a couple more million. So when it comes to numbers, Stalin and Hitler both killed a lot of people. But I don't really want to play the "Terrible Person Olympics" game because both were horrible and to pick one over the other would kind of miss the whole point of honoring the victims and I completely agree with you that they both committed horrendous crimes.

I just think certain groups in society have a hatred of what the perceive as far right extremism and want to attack them through the means of video games. It does not fit their agenda to realise that both the Nazis and Commnuists both have very far left ideals and neither of them valued liberty, freedom of speech or any of the pillars of western modern societies.
I really have to agree here. There are so many leftists (not all leftists) who will constantly lable regular Republicans (or even centrists) as "Nazis." While I don't think that these leftists are as bad as the Nazis, a lot of them have similar beliefs. I could go on a huge rant about how these radical leftists think and act a lot like Hitler supporters but I have a lot to do today.

Games of these types often take a western centric approach. As in the American or British (usually) side is the side of the player and is portryed as the hero and the opposing force is the evil that must be stopped. In reality that's not always been the case. The west have done some terrible, unspeakable things also. More recently, Wikileaks have exposed some of these crimes that the US and other western nations have done. Crimes that western governments want swept under the carpet.
Well of course the good guys in war-based games are going to be the Americans or the British, especially in WW2 games where you fight the Nazis. Of course both of those countries have done terrible things before, but in the grand scheme of things, they have progressed much faster than most nations and have done a lot of good when it would have been easier to do nothing. This is something else I can talk about a lot but I will keep it short. But who else would you want to play as in these types of games?

There is a great movie parallel that really gave me quite some perspectiveon this. Flags of our Fathers vs Letters from Iwo Jima. Two different sides of the same story. Of cause we all know that the Japanese war machine had to be stopped, but the average Japenese soldier was a person too, with feelings, hopes and dreams. They didn't want to be in the war, but they were conscripted. Seeing their side was just so amazing. Of cause the movie was hollywoodised but the main points were still there.
On the German side you had the Wehrmacht and the Nazis. Most of the Wehrmacht were conscripts who were not full of hatred, but they had to fight or they were shot by the Nazis.
In WW2, there were Japanese and German people who were drafted and were not bad people themselves. However, all in all, it wouldn't be wrong to say that the Germans and the Japanese were the "bad guys" in WW2, as the leaders of both countries were almost all terrible people. The group of German and Japanese soldiers who were not enthusiastic about the cause they were forced to fight for usually did not rank too high and they sometimes even aided partisan groups secretly. It is safe to say that the only people put on trial and executed were legitimate war criminals. The US and Britain decided to avoid prosecuting the Hitler Youth entirely because they were kids.

This is a very narrow minded view of good vs evil. In reality us vs them would be a better way to describe it, though that would not be as politically motivated. The good side is always us, no matter which side your on and the other is the enemy. Video game developers tend to forget this. Western developers keep portraying the "west is the best" narrative and the Asian developers just steer clear from these type of games entirely. The Asian developers prefer narratives where who was good and who was evil is not clear cuut and is still up for debate. Take the Romance of the 3 Kingdoms and Dynasty Warriors as an example. We have Cao Cao, Sun Quan and Lui Bei. The book Three Kingdoms has us believe Lui Bei was the good of the three, but historically speaking, all three were as blood thirsty as each other. There was no clear good side there.
To be honest, I think that the concept of moral ambiguity does not apply to as many conflicts as we are made to believe. For example, the media loves to tell us that we had no business in Vietnam or Korea. However, in retrospect, we really shouldn't have pulled out. North Korea is now a country-sized gulag. And because we chose to leave Cambodia alone, the Khmer Rouge came to power and carried out the Cambodian genocide. Thank you, hippies.

This also applies to science fiction games too. In most of them, the humanoid creatures are the good side and the weird non humanoid looking creatures are the evil that need eradicating. On a galactic scale, the developers believe we are the better species, which might not the true at all.
When people see anything that looks strange, their first thought is that it could be some kind of predator. If humans had just given a lion or a shark the benefit of the doubt the first time they encountered one, we would not be here today. These days, anyone who doesn't necessarily welcome something or someone strange is immediately labeled some kind of prejudice, and while that is sometimes accurate, there are cases where someone just has very strong defensive instincts or bad past experiences. So in a game about fighting these dangerous invasive predators, it's best to make them look like dangerous invasive predators so that the player is sure that they are the good guys and they are fighting the bad guys. Games are not real life.

So I get where you are coming from, but games are just supposed to be fun and it's okay to have a "pure good vs. pure evil" story if it makes for a good game.
 

Castle

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Okay got some more stuff because I'm awake and why not...

Is it a "presumption" that the Nazis were "heinous"?
I wasn't suggesting that anyone "presumes" that nazis were "heinous."
Lucas presumed that because of that no one would object to the Stormtroopers he based them off of being wholesale slaughtered in his movies.

Later creators used Nazi stand-ins as a means to teach a generation with no first-hand experience of them why they were bad.
Yes. But storytellers have done a bad, even irresponsible job of doing so.

We are now on our fourth generation who were not alive while the Nazis ruled in Germany.
And that is one more entire generation of people who are even further removed from accurate recollection of what took place then. The fuzzier our recollection gets, the easier it becomes for our minds to grossly simplify the nature of what really happened.

they became the punching bag because we need to learn and remember the lesson of that war.
The lesson being conveyed, however, is schmaltzy and simplistic. It just boils the matter down to "Nazis are bad, Mmmkay?" Yeah, duh. Then some idiot who now lacks a nuanced understanding of history gets it into their vapid skull that other things they think are bad must also be Nazis and therefore it's okay to bash them over the head with a bike lock.

It presents the Nazis and their idealogy in ways that various audiences people who don't want to think too hard can digest and allows them to recognise why that ideology is a bad one.
Fixed it.

Again, telling stories about the Nazis is important on a cultural level and plays a pivotal role in defending us from that ideology rising again.
Yeah, the habit of caricaturing nazis as a means to defend us from that ideology rising again is so effective that people are seeing nazis where none exist...

Suddenly we have all these nitwits mistaking everything for LITERAL NAZIS!!! REEEEEE!! and using the accusation as justification for jailing Scottish comedians who teach their dog to mock nazis as a joke :dry:
 

Shroom

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I think Nazis..... are not very good!!!

Also, Bethesda heard complaints about their game Wolfenstein II and decided to make one where you switch roles called Adolfenstien II. Play as a literal Nazi and remove freedoms from people who don't look the same as you in this historically accurate, no nonsense work of fiction.

This new wave of propaganda is unheard of, and unseen. It's not like this same sort of tomfoolery was happening during the 1930s!

This is unique to our soyboy, and quite honestly, CUCKED generation!

Commies should quite frankly be targeted at next. They just look too dang cool. Who wants stars when you can have hammers and sickles? That stuff is way cooler!
Let's beat em all down!
 

Bishop Rodan

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Those who reply to this arguement by saying Nazis are worse are actually factually incorrect. From my rough memory, the Nazi regime killed over 6 million people and the Communist regimes have killed over 20 million people.
To be frank, the only reason the Nazis ostensibly killed less was because they lost the war in 1945.

Also, the number of people killed in the Holocaust is actually closer to 17 million (6 million is just the Jewish victims). A comparable number to 20 million, over a far shorter timeframe. Can you imagine how much more they would have killed if the worst had come to pass? I probably wouldn't even be here!

So yeah, the Nazis were a lot ****ing worse. Stalin may have been an awful human being, but at least I wouldn't have been sent to the gas chambers for immediate extermination thanks to who my ancestors are.

(I would have been sent to the gulag cos I made a joke about the government, but can't win em all I guess)
 
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So yeah, the Nazis were a lot ****ing worse. Stalin may have been an awful human being, but at least I wouldn't have been sent to the gas chambers for immediate extermination thanks to who my ancestors are.

(I would have been sent to the gulag cos I made a joke about the government, but can't win em all I guess)
You probably would have been sent to the gas chambers for immediate extermination thanks to who your ancestors were. Stalin killed quite a few Jews during his purges (he wasn't out to exterminate them, but considering him friendly is suicidal at best), and he also oppressed his own people quite a bit. He would also kill people just for being related to the wrong person. So if he decided he disliked one of your ancestors, time to die.

Not to say he's the worst person alive, but he was in no way anything less than an insane genocidal dictator.
 

Castle

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I like how we're playing "Who's the Better Mass Murderer" by keeping score of the body count.

The point isn't "who's the bigger meanie?" The point is, both the Nazis and Hitler and the Soviets and Stalin were horrendous but yet for some reason it's the Nazis who are the go-to template to use when your game of make believe needs a human shaped punching bag to caricaturize.
 
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I like how we're playing "Who's the Better Mass Murderer" by keeping score of the body count.
Which I win in 7 timelines out of 12.

The point isn't "who's the bigger meanie?" The point is, both the Nazis and Hitler and the Soviets and Stalin were horrendous but yet for some reason it's the Nazis who are the go-to template to use when your game of make believe needs a human shaped punching bag to caricaturize.
The caricature also has another unfortunate side-effect: Desensitization. The Nazis have, for the most part, gone from something so horrific that it caused nations that loved genocide to see it as evil... to cartoon villains. The sheer horror of what they did has lessened to the point it's more of an academic footnote in their general media portrayal. Yeah, sure, Hitler caused millions to die in concentration camps... but who really cares about that when you're trying to kill him as he rides around in a giant robot?
 

Hero of Pizza Time

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Not to take anything away from these two monsters, but another evil regime we NEVER talk about ANYWHERE is the Czarist regime. People always seem to assume that Russia was some noble kingdom before the Bolsheviks came along, but the truth is that there was a good reason for the revolution.

The Czars of Russia had their own purges and pogroms. They practiced feudalism, and apart from being cool for fantasy settings, it is the arguably the worst economic system; the gist is that all of the peasants grow the crops and do all of the hard work and get nothing, whereas the aristocrats don't have to do anything, yet they have all of the wealth and power and there was literally no limit to what the monarchs could do until the Magna Carta.

Two fun facts here:
  • Vlad Tepes, or Vlad the Impaler, was a murderous ruler of Wallachia in the 1400s who would, as his name suggested, impale his enemies and leave them on stakes, leaving them there for days. He is believed to be the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula.
  • This is really just a sort of personal one here: I have great grandparents who were from pre-revolution Russia (they came to America in the early 1900s). They fled because of the Cossacks constantly raiding their villages, damaging property, beating/killing people, humiliating them in terrible ways. One sight that has been passed down in my family is the sight of a Cossack taking a baby from their mother's arms and tossing them on the bayonets of their guns.
This doesn't mean that what the Communists did was okay (as they did do a lot of the same stuff), but there is a story behind how they suddenly came to power. Part of preventing it from happening again is recognizing the evil that happened both before and during their reign.
 

Deus

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You probably would have been sent to the gas chambers for immediate extermination thanks to who your ancestors were. Stalin killed quite a few Jews during his purges (he wasn't out to exterminate them, but considering him friendly is suicidal at best), and he also oppressed his own people quite a bit. He would also kill people just for being related to the wrong person. So if he decided he disliked one of your ancestors, time to die.

Not to say he's the worst person alive, but he was in no way anything less than an insane genocidal dictator.
Actually Stalin in his later years was going to finish off what Hitler started. There was evidence he wanted a second holocaust. https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/literaturesalon.wordpress.com/2014/04/18/plans-for-a-second-holocaust-stalins-doctors-plot/amp/
 

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