Deep Silver Issue Apology Over Dead Island Torso Debacle

By John Walker on January 16th, 2013 at 12:01 am.

Deep Silver, in response to an enquiry from Polygon, have issued an apology for the Dead Island Riptide: Zombie Bait Edition. As we reported earlier this afternoon, the EU special edition of the game features a remarkably offensive statuette of a headless and armless bikinied figure, streaked in gore. Since the internet became aflame with the discussion, the publishers told Polygon, “We sincerely regret this choice.”

Whether this means the special edition will be pulled remains to be seen. Deep Silver told Poly that they are now “collecting feedback from the Dead Island community, as well as the international gaming community at large, for ongoing internal meetings with Deep Silver’s entire international team today.”

However, their tone is remarkably contrite. The comment concludes:

“For now, we want to reiterate to the community, fans and industry how deeply sorry we are, and that we are committed to making sure this will never happen again.”

It’s great to see the company responding in such a forthright manner (although an odd line explains that the torso figurine “was cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island”), but it’s hard not to raise an eyebrow at how it was that this went from concept to promotion without anyone at the company pausing to query if it was an entirely brilliant idea. As is often the case with these stories, you’re left bemused as to how it took a press/public reaction for the offensive potential to be acknowledged.

Anyhow, it’s looking like some sense might be permeating the situation. We’ll keep you posted.

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389 Comments »

  1. skinlo says:

    I didn’t really find it particularly offensive, just totally pointless and stupid.

    I’m glad they have issued an apology for those that were offended though.

    • DeathBunny says:

      It is tasteless, wrong, stupid and i kind of want it.

      • GreatGreyBeast says:

        I don’t think I would ever actually want it. It’s like laughing at a tasteless t-shirt on Cafepress that you would never actually buy. But I basically thought the same.

        There is a longstanding tradition of this sort of exploitation, like cutting a topless pornstar in half in Pirahna 3d (a movie I have seen more than once). It’s not necessarily such a bad thing. But I think what cuts exploitation cinema a break is when it’s gleefully, shamelessly honest about what it’s doing. It doesn’t try to claim that it isn’t offensive or misogynistic or fetishizing sex and violence. It just says that’s okay sometimes, because we aren’t perfect and sometimes we want to let go the burden of virtue and wallow in our base instincts for a couple of hours. And if Deep Silver had gone with that defense, I might have bought it. But it looks like what happened here is somebody looked at this thing and actually had to think about whether it was offensive or not. And then decided either that it wasn’t, or that maybe they could slip it through without admitting what they made. And that takes a terrible person.

      • Trillby says:

        It was totally unacceptable. Her breasts were at least two cup sizes too small and hard plastic will never do. I hope they go back to the drawing board and come back with something more to my tastes.

        More blood too. Definitely needs more blood.

        • vondas says:

          I think they should do localised versions where bikinis have the flag of the country it is being sold in on them instead. I am offended by British cultural imperialism inherent in this blatant, shameless display of Union Jack Tits.

          • Trillby says:

            You aren’t thinking…by doing away with the bikini altogether, everyone wins. Deep Silver saves money on plastic, we get to have some lovely nips perking up our desk, and everyone knows bare breasts are multicultural international. It’d be like National Geographic or something. Just less saggy.

          • Premium User Badge Jackablade says:

            I dunno. If they turned it into a controller where you used the bosoms as thumbsticks and poked about in the open wounds for the remainder of the buttons they might have piqued my interest.

          • D3xter says:

            I believe they had already planned to do that.

          • McGreed says:

            Be careful, they might end up making a special edition with a built in fleshlight.

          • Carbonated Dan says:

            that would have been jolly considerate – I always play Dead Island with the lights off

          • Saarlaender39 says:

            Oh, wonderful innocence of youth. If only I could regain it.

    • abandonhope says:

      Pointlessly stupid? Gaming sites and players are talking about the game. Mission accomplished. Zombie bait? More like “journalist” bait.

      I’m leaning toward considering this good offensive. Not in an artistic way, of course, but rather in that its existence harms nothing except sensibilities, and delights people who like gory, offensive, silly things. It goes well with the game and the genre in general, a genre that tends to explore our fantastical impulse to kill one another in horrible ways without all the murdery consequences. Tossing a pair of tits on top doesn’t suddenly make it A BILLION TIMES WORSE.

      • MrLebanon says:

        Yes, because we are all running out to buy dead island now because of this

        • abandonhope says:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Succès_de_scandale

          This is elementary human knowledge at this point.

          • Acorino says:

            And yet Yoko Ono didn’t sell any more records despite being quite infamous back in her day (to say: her records sold quite poorly).

          • abandonhope says:

            Think of Yoko Ono as a scandal for The Beatles, who sold quite well as they deteriorated as a band. Or don’t. I don’t really care.

            (12 million albums sold in 1969 and 1970 vs. eight million in the preceding two years, if that helps my case.)

          • Premium User Badge Lambchops says:

            “No such thing as bad publicity” isn’t necessarily true in all cases though.

            People in the US and some other countries may still happily buy Coca Cola’s Dasani brand of drinking water. I don’t know if it’s still on the go now but it was certainly successful enough.

            Mention it in the UK and you’ll either be met with a bemused shrug or a giggle and an exclamation of “oh, yeah, cancer water!” Reports picked up by the press that it was just tap water and that it was found to contain a higher than average quantity of a possible carcinogen completely destroyed the brand in the UK.

            It’s a little bit more nuanced than any attention being worth it.

            Edit: Just double checked the Wiki article on this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dasani). They also rather hilariously use “bottled spunk” as a tagline. That probably didn’t help either.

          • x1501 says:

            Rationalize it as you like, but a lot of people who didn’t know about Dead Island Riptide now do, and most of them won’t even remember or care about the “misogynistic” statue by the time the game is out. Ka-ching!

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Exactly, its a ZOMBIE game ffs, its deeply offensive by nature, some people are just too easily offended and instead of ignoring stuff like this as tacky crap feel the need to round up people to complain about it, can’t do anything these days without some do-goody fuckwit bleating about it.
        Do I think its tasteless, yes, would i buy it, purely because its Dead Island and I though the first game was a sack of shit, no. Would I give it more than a seconds glance because of the offending statuette, no. People need to lighten up a hell of a lot.

    • thebluemonkey81 says:

      I can’t say I quite understand why people were so upset tbh.

      It’d be like me being outraged at those pretend fannies of porn stars you can get.

      It’s a gore based figure from a gore based game at a holiday resort.

      Now if res evil did a bikini clad gore soaked figure, I’d understand, as it’s not set at a beach resort.

      Maybe I’m just desensitized.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      I agree I don’t find it offensive; But like most of the figurines sold with ‘collectors edition’ packs, I find it utterly pointless, and not the sort of thing (I at least) that would be on my desk/table or anywhere in the house other than a box tucked away in some corner with other rubbish.

  2. Ansob says:

    Glad to hear that reporting on it did some good!

    • Premium User Badge Jackablade says:

      I dare say it achieved exactly what Deep Silver were looking for too. Sure they’ll have lost a small number of folks who’re offended by this stunt, but they’ll have brought the game to the attention of many, many more. These things blow over very, quickly. Deep Silver have little to lose and potentially quite a bit to gain.

      I think the most discussion worthy point to come out of this is how easy it is to manipulate the blogosphere and games journalists into doing your bidding. Just dangle something a little tawdry in front of their knows and they’ll rush off and generate hundreds of thousands of words in articles, tweets and comments. In future I’d like to see places like RPS be more aware of these things and take a stand by not devoting all those words to it. If you have to make note of an issue, perhaps keep it short, no images, a mention of the fact that you’re actively avoiding generating free buzz for a particular company and don’t allow for comments. That’s probably not an ideal solution, but it’s something to at least think about.

      • SavageTech says:

        I agree wholeheartedly, this seems like a pretty transparent case of exploiting obviously controversial and/or offensive material for marketing purposes. The number of people who know about Dead Island: Riptide has likely skyrocketed as a result of this coverage, and the number of people who are so offended that they will never buy the game is minimal. By issuing an apology as a company Deep Silver essentially shifts the blame to a few unnamed “bad seeds” who let this happen, and as a result they’ll likely regain the business of a significant portion of those who were initially offended.

        It’s a brilliant strategy, really. Developers have to know that gaming news sites make money by attracting a high number of readers, and even the most cursory experience with news media makes it apparent that sensational stories draw in larger crowds. Gaming sites want to draw in readers in order to make money, and the developers want to draw in crowds to raise awareness (and thus make more money). It’s a win-win all around.

        • The Random One says:

          I, for one, still don’t know what Dead Island: Riptide is. I assumed the goretorso was part of a strangely delayed collector’s edition and given the situation it surfaced in I have no interest in learning more. In fact it might have dropped in my mental filing from “probably lame game I might buy if on a sale out of curiosity” to “probably lame game I have no intention of buying and never will.”

          The idea that they expected this would be found offensive and did it to raise awareness seems extremely naive to me, like thinking that someone making incredibly misogynistic comments is obviously trolling because no one actually thinks that so they must just be pretending to get a rise out of people.

    • LeeTheAgent says:

      Yes, what would we do without watchdog websites to tell us what’s offensive or not? Hopefully we nipped this in the bud before consumers have to make the difficult decision of whether or not to support this with our monetary vote. I know personally by the time it comes out, I wouldn’t remember if games journalists found it offensive or not.

  3. TCM says:

    Isn’t this the same apology they sent out when people found the ‘Feminist Whore’ skill in the game code?

    It’s like, word for word the same.

    Yeah, not holding my breath on anything at the company changing with any kind of speed. They’re scum.

    • Wreckdum says:

      Good thing they make decent games! If they were child rapists as long as they made a good game I’m ok with that. Sometimes you gotta break a few eggs. Nah mean son?

      • Wozzle says:

        Literally everything you said was incorrect.

      • Sheng-ji says:

        I get that you’re fine with this, couldn’t care less but my god, if a company was set up deliberately employing unreformed child rapists fresh from prison, I really hope you wouldn’t give then your business, no matter what the product. If you really would, you are the worst kind of irresponsible consumer.

    • bgf says:

      Yeah I passed on the game after hearing about the original “Feminist Whore” issue and the weak apology but I always kind of wondered if that was a bit too hard line of a stance to take.

      Now I’m certain I made the right call in not handing over money to these guys.

      • Gorf says:

        Good for you buddy! Boycott the shit out of it!

        • bgf says:

          It’s not a boycott per se but diatribes and essays online only go so far, to demand better in media (or any hobby) you enjoy, you’ve got to “vote with your wallet” as they say.

          • Gorf says:

            Boycotts really turn me on.
            Especially over disgusting, dirty, filthy, nasty things like this….oh yeah.

      • Hyomoto says:

        I realize this article is about the bust, but could you judge the game for what it is perhaps? I’m sure all the other ones you’ve played were made by morally upstanding church goers with a healthy fear in god and respect for their fellow man, but if its a pile of shit then let the game be a pile of shit and let THAT fuel your boycott.

        Otherwise you need to quit applying a double standard to your life. You eat food made by shitty people, wear clothes made by shitty people, watch TV and read books written by shitty people and based on the evidence that this constitutes a moral stance, you are likely a shitty person. Either apply your standard everywhere or quit pretending like you occupy this guilt-free zone. I guess you just like saying, “I may roll around in filth, but at least I’m not a pig!”

        • bgf says:

          Good job turning your wild assumptions and feeble attempts at divination into probably the dumbest defense of mindless consumerism I’ve ever seen.

          Have you lived under a rock the past ten years and totally missed the rise of the socially conscious consumer? The Nike or BP Boycotts, the Foxconn scandal with Apple? The booming sustainable and local food movements? Gaming is no different, buyers are demanding better products and better behavior from the companies and advertisers they spend their cash on.

          It’s got nothing to do with ‘god’ or whatever garbage you just hurled at the metaphorical wall hoping it would stick.

          But keep on, keeping on, thoughtless consumer, you’re every marketer’s dream, fed shit and asking for a second helping.

          • Ninjilla says:

            You decided not to buy a game because it had a skill called Femenist Whore, and the fact that you batter, puncture, and slice the limbs off zombies (It’s been awhile since I’ve played, but you could probably do this to 8-12 zombiers per minute, often much more) in an extremely gorey fashion wasnt at all a bother?

            Dead Island was a fun game, I bought it for such a fact. Who cares about bad press, the more players the more co-op I can do!

          • Hyomoto says:

            Anyone with a job and a wallet is a marketers dream. I believe you don’t give a shit about any of this, you just want to be on the ‘moral’ side of the fence. My sarcasm is meant to point out the ridiculous nature of these arguments, not to factor god into the equation. Your response is what I’d expect from someone who clicks like if they love their mother or texts ‘haiti’ to feel like a good person. I hate those people because they talk with a big mouth and live with small hearts. I don’t care if you buy or like this game, I mind that you live by a double-standard.

            So if it makes you feel better to think you are one of the ‘good ones’ to boycott them, fine. It may even be a good thing to do, but I don’t believe you have any sincerity. I give to charity, helped in the aftermath of the Japan earthquake(I live here) and hold the door like a gentleman. I don’t pretend any of that makes me righteous. Make your arguments from the floor, I have trouble hearing them when you talk down from your pedestal.

          • vondas says:

            If this comment section is anything to go by, your “socially conscious consumers”, at least when it comes to video games, are not such a common species even on RPS.

            Answering personal insults with more personal insults is very classy, by the way. Not to excuse the other guy.

          • bgf says:

            No vondas, I suppose it isn’t very classy and I could have responded better. Though in the end, it’s not my intent to be classy or morally superior (despite Hymoto’s repeated, misplaced assertions to the contrary).

            The intent is to remind that any change a community of consumers wants to see in the products or advertising offered to them starts at that product’s bottom line and in their utilizing their intelligence when it comes to their wallet.

            Don’t want low-brow exploitation and offensive marketing in your games? By all means say so, but more importantly, don’t pay for it.

            Simple as that.

          • distrocto says:

            It wasn’t a skill though, I believe the skill was called “Gender Wars”.
            They had mistakingly uploaded a Debug Version of their game on Steam and certain early customers had access to their Source Code, someone did dig through it and found excerpts of this in there being used for an early Alpha Version of the game. Basically it was nothing worth mentioning.

            It kind of reminded me of this
            http://www.wired.com/wiredenterprise/2012/07/b16b00b5/
            “Microsoft has contributed thousands of lines of code to the Linux kernel, the open source software at the heart of the widely used Linux operating system. And now, the software giant has contributed some controversy too.
            Sometime over the past few years, as Microsoft beefed up the Linux kernel with code related to its Hyper-V virtualization software, one unidentified developer needed a name for a piece of code used by the software, and for some unknown reason, he went with this: 0xB16B00B5.
            Microsoft apologized for the “offensive string” on Friday. “We have submitted a patch to fix this issue and the change will be published in a future release of the kernel,” the company said in an e-mailed statement.”

            If you looked at the Windows Source Code or similar software I’m sure there would be similar “offensive” things somewhere buried in there.
            It’s a good example of people not being able to smell the air because their head is so firmly lodged between their butt-cheeks.

          • MasterDex says:

            @bgf: Dude, really? You’re comparing a game having a skill called “Feminist Whore” to one of the worst oil spills in history and the mass suicide of underprivileged workers. Get a grip. If that was the name of an achievement in the new GTA game, I find it hard to imagine many people would bat an eyelid, previous entries have certainly had more tasteless stuff.

          • HadToLogin says:

            Good thing Red Dead Redemption never made it into PC. Can’t imagine what kind of hate Dastardly achievement would bring.

          • Brun says:

            Have you lived under a rock the past ten years and totally missed the rise of the socially conscious consumer? The Nike or BP Boycotts, the Foxconn scandal with Apple?

            Because Foxconn’s scandal really put a damper on Apple’s sales. OH WAIT.

            The “socially conscious consumer” has hardly risen. Half of them will hear the company line – “We’re currently working through this issue with our suppliers. The following 4-point plan explains what we’re doing…” – accept it, and then continue as if nothing were ever wrong. The other half will complain endlessly on the internet and then go out and buy those products anyway.

            If that was the name of an achievement in the new GTA game

            I find it interesting that Dead Island is being targeted specifically, to be honest. GTA and Saint’s Row have done *much* worse, but I guess they get a free pass since they are viewed (by convention) through the “satire” lens.

        • Pathetic Phallacy says:

          Or perhaps he could do what every other intelligent consumer does and express himself using his wallet. He doesn’t agree with this sexist horseshit, so he doesn’t buy a game that actually uses sexism as its marketing tool.

          Where is the fucking problem? Double standard? Give me a break.

    • slerbal says:

      “Isn’t this the same apology they sent out when people found the ‘Feminist Whore’ skill in the game code?”

      That is exactly the same thought I had. I think they have decided that the only way to get noticed is to take the controversy approach. They are a one-trick pony. The really cynical part of me doubts there ever was a statue. Actually now I think about it their other approach is to deliberately mislead people about their games with their trailers.

      That statue really was the definition of sexualised violence. It also looks like it was made by a 13-year old combining the two things he loves most: boobies and gore.

      “For now, we want to reiterate to the community, fans and industry how deeply sorry we are, and that we are committed to making sure this will never happen again.”

      Until the next time they need publicity… this merely confirms that frankly they are up there with the War Z “creators”. I think the best thing we could possibly do from now on is completely ignore them.

      Dead Island was a weak game that held no long term appeal and for that reason alone I won’t be buying any more of their titles.

  4. Laffles says:

    Well, that decapitated quickly

    • Hoaxfish says:

      yes, it was over torsoon

      • Shadram says:

        Apparently the Deep Silver PR team thought it was ‘armless fun. They were wrong!

        • TCM says:

          Their ad campaign didn’t have a leg to stand on anyway.

          • DaFishes says:

            I bet their PR and community team have been running around like a chicken with its head cut off all day.

          • UnspokenDegree says:

            They really got it in the neck

          • Fazer says:

            That campaign must have costed an arm and leg.

          • DarkFenix says:

            Sounds like their marketing folks just got a-head of themselves.

          • The Random One says:

            Good thing RPS is here to keep us abreast of the situation.

        • Shadram says:

          You could say they made a boob-oo.

          • EeryPetrol says:

            For this abismal display of bad taste, Deep Silver should be chestised severly.

    • TheGroovyMule says:

      Don’t know why they do.this sort of thing, Ad campaigns like this are going bust

    • Pryde says:

      You must have no eyes to not see that this new RPS’ “sexists everywhere” bandwagon has no brains. The ad campaign was quite toothless for a game about beaches and mutilating… well, everything that walks on two legs. And this “apology” looks like just a piece of meat thrown to the media dogs. Well, good for them – they earned their meal. But for me it’s just arms down for the RPS and likes now as they go for cheap headless boobie-scandalizing.

    • bravesirrobin says:

      The community ripped them such a new one that they’ll need tide to get rid of those stains.

    • Premium User Badge c-Row says:

      Their marketing dept walked straight into a boobie trap.

  5. SirKicksalot says:

    If this was a collectible from the new Evil Dead, nobody would complain.
    Items like this have been a staple of the horror genre for decades.

    • TCM says:

      Weird, I thought Evil Dead had an actual sense of humor, and did not try to fetishize gore and tits.

      Maybe it’s been a while since I watched the movies, but I don’t recall Bruce Campbell being particularly aroused at cutting off his own hand.

      • Archonsod says:

        What makes you think anyone else was aroused by a dismembered corpse? :P

        • TCM says:

          Oh nobody was, but clearly they wanted you to be.

          • Archonsod says:

            I thought they were just riffing off the promotional tat usually pushed by movies which include the words “apocalypse”, “cannibal” and “zombie” somewhere in the title (with triple word score for managing to work “Nazi” in there somewhere).

            In fact to be honest, you saw a lot worse in your average video rental store circa 1988.

          • Premium User Badge RaveTurned says:

            You realise that was 25 years ago, right? Times move on.

      • skorpeyon says:

        The original Evil Dead movie had a tentacle rape scene in the woods using vines snaking out from trees. I don’t see this as being any less tasteless. Admittedly, however, the REASON Evil Dead is so popular is how horrible the first movie was. You watch it to laugh at it, not to be frightened or get drawn into it. It’s ridiculously over-the-top.

        Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness, however, are comedy/horror, like you’re suggesting. I’m with SirKicksalot. This could definitely be an original Evil Dead piece of memorabilia and people would love it.

      • HadToLogin says:

        Well, they made tree a rapist. And, even through they said they later didn’t liked it, from remake trailer it looks like rape is back.

    • SirKicksalot says:

      I hope you’ll never see anything by H. R. Giger.

      • TCM says:

        I’m a fan of Giger, actually. Giger’s drawings are very well done, mindbending, and horrific. There is skill and taste there.

        This is a woman’s torso with a Union Jack bikini. The woman has been dismembered.

        HIGGGH AAAAAAAAAAAAAAARTTTTTTTT

      • GunnerMcCaffrey says:

        Please stop. It’s not about the grotesqueness, it’s about the misogyny. (edited to add: That was in repsponse to SirKicksalot)

        • SirKicksalot says:

          What makes this misogynistic? Or is it a Pavlovian response – you see breasts, violence and videogames and immediately apply the misogyny label while disregarding the context of the game and genre?
          If you’re going to mention “feminist whore”, I doubt Techland’s programmers have anything to do with Deep Silver’s marketing.

          • destroy.all.monsters says:

            Thank you.

          • Bhazor says:

            Misogyny is (broadly) a hatred of women

            This was a brutally dismembered sexually idealized womans torso intended to be displayed as a trophy. With the tagline that she is to be used as zombie bait. I don’t understand how that’s not misogynistic.

          • Jenks says:

            Have you ever played the game, Bhazor? You dismember zombies of both sexes who were wearing swimming attire when they died. You people are seriously reaching on this one.

          • TCM says:

            Hey jenks, that’s all well and good.

            That is what is in the game.

            What is enticing you to buy it is this:

            http://image.gamespotcdn.net/gamespot/images/2013/14/DeadIslandRiptideSE_71305_screen.jpg

            That one statue.

            The centerpiece of their limited edition.

            No alternative version.

            Do note how great care has been taken to ensure that the sexual attributes have no mutilation or scarring.

          • Bhazor says:

            Oh I’ve played it and it features shock horror sexually idealised women (men being much more physically diverse) being horribly mutilated. You seem to think this justifies it somehow.

          • vondas says:

            From reading the comments, it seems people have a hard time agreeing on what is and isn’t misogyny. Maybe I’m being too literal-minded, but misogyny appears to mean hatred of women. I do not think that stupid thing they did shows that they “hate women”; that’s just silly rhetoric. It is more precise to say that they don’t care about women as people, and eagerly exploit them as sex objects (but that’s hardly something they came up with just now, or something that does not strike a chord with fans of gorn and similar produce).

            Therefore this is not misogynistic (unless you’re really reaching, I guess – the torso has no head, therefore the authors are saying that all women are dumb! They also throw like girls (no hands) and cannot run (no legs)); it is, however, shamelessly and uncritically exploitative and objectifying. You can get angry about THAT if you want, of course (personally, I don’t think this kind of thing is worth bothering with; it’s like if “progressive” movie journalism focused on calling out makers of snuff films on their immoral ways). But calling this kind of gorn misogynistic strikes me as somewhat misleading. It muddles the issue and antagonises people who might otherwise find your points much more easy to agree with.

          • GunnerMcCaffrey says:

            “Maybe I’m being too literal-minded, but misogyny appears to mean hatred of women. I do not think that stupid thing they did shows that they “hate women”;”

            Yes, it literally means “hatred of women,” but in general usage, it tends to refer to dehumanization of women — especially anything that encourages, participates in, or banks on cultural double standards in how women are treated, depicted, paid, talked to, talked about, etc. vs. men, or cultural norms which encourage sexual violence against women.

            It actually doesn’t matter if every single person involved in the making of that horrific thing genuinely loves their moms and daughters and hasn’t an iota of anger toward women in them. They still contributed to a misogynistic culture, just by putting that thing out there.

            Imagine you’re a female rape victim who’s been called a liar by the police, shamed by the friends of the rapist, shunned by the community, and ignored by your friends. Now imagine you see an ad for this thing. Would you think it was just some campy harmless fun?

            That’s an extreme example; misogyny manifests more often in more subtle ways. But I hope you get what I’m saying.

          • vondas says:

            McCaffrey – No, I’m not quite there, I’m afraid. I suppose I’m having trouble linking something as absurd and grotesque as this and actual women or actual sexual violence. Looking at it does not make me feel encouraged to rape anyone. Do you think it has that effect on anybody at all? Sorry, that is extreme. But do you really think that anyone was made more of a misogynist through this? That someone took it as validation of pre-existing misogyny? And if not, then what could you possibly mean by it “contributing to a misogynistic culture”?

            The only thing that I think could be said about is that, indeed, it shows that the makers of the game treat women as objects for the purposes of their marketing (and indeed game design). I happen to think that’s on their own conscience, though. It does not make our culture better or worse; it is a symptom of things, not a cause.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            It wasn’t that this item in itself was misogynic, it was that this was marketed directly at men, women never get stuff marketed directly at them. If I wanted something as crass and tasteless as this, a sexy man chopped up by a zombie, I’m shit out of luck. :(

          • Archonsod says:

            “It wasn’t that this item in itself was misogynic, it was that this was marketed directly at men, women never get stuff marketed directly at them”

            Tampons.

            Generally across the entertainment industries you tend to find “woman” is as popular a target demographic as “man”.

          • Hahaha says:

            “it wasn’t that this item in itself was misogynic, it was that this was marketed directly at men, women never get stuff marketed directly at them. If I wanted something as crass and tasteless as this, a sexy man chopped up by a zombie, I’m shit out of luck.”

            Now I know your just trolling, you read (I hope) and responded to comments to my post in the last article on this but you didn’t read my comment? what was that advert doing exactly…….marketing to men? one example of MANY (that your ignoring) actually it seems like you have completely blocked that convo form your mind so you can carry on living in your made up world where your being oppressed.

          • Sheng-ji says:

            @Hahaha

            Er… I assume English isn’t your first language. I have no idea what you are trying to say. Clearly you think I’m trolling, clearly I replied to you in a previous post. What did I say?

            Here, I saw someone asking what made this misogynic, I replied saying that it’s not but the thinking behind the statue ignores the fact that women like games too.

            I think the rest is your very own little strawman. I have never claimed to be oppressed, I have no idea what a convo mind is, nor do I care. All I say is that it would be nice if the games industry made stuff for women too. Or is that my oppressed convo mind talking again?

            EDIT: Respond to your edit – they say assumptions are the mother of all fuckups do they not. Assuming I have blocked you if I don’t respond is rather stupid – after all, your post was barely legible and there is that little thing called real life. I don’t block people that I disagree with, I block people who I have no interest in reading their posts (including those who agree with me and not including all who disagree with me). Jury is out on you at the moment, there may be a spark of intelligence in there, you may be a headache in the making. I’ll let you know, but the balance is heavily in the headache camp right now.

          • Hahaha says:

            Nice attack on my early morning writing.

            This jog your memory

            “First person shooters are predominately aimed at …. males”

            Bingo!

            Why can’t they market them at women too? I like fps’s I really do and I’m not alone. Why aren’t I being sold fps games that appeal directly to me?

            or

            “Thats BS. Just as many girls play video games at my childs school as boys and genre does not differentiate them, individual games do.

            This gender divide nonsense is as a result of our generations sexism, which is what we want to stop. What you’ve just said is no different to the Plantagenets deciding that because only men could read, the only stories that should be written down are those that appeal to men. Skip a few generations to a time when both women and men read equally and there are books aimed at men and books aimed at women and books that appeal to both. Can we have that in games please.”

            “I’m talking about games because, well, this is all about sexism in gaming and so were you, unless first person shooters are not games in your mind.

            The changing demographic in gaming is strong evidence if not proof that games of all genres appeal to both sexes. So why are most games only being marketed at straight males?”

            Don’t worry I realised you took the narrow focus of FPS games and turned it in to ALL games but it’s ok.


            BAN THIS SICK FILTH LMFAO

            edit
            hook line and sinker lmao that bait was to obvious surely?

            WORDS RAWR < words why did they include that

            edit
            http://www.peselectro.com/pescontent/image/cache/DH01-021-BOX-550×550.jpg
            BAN THIS SICK FILTH

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Oh! Hang on! I know who you are! You’re the guy who said that the vast majority of advertising is aimed at women aren’t you, and that womens magazines are full of images of women therefore it’s OK to objectify women.

            EDIT – Ok, nope I was wrong then… response incoming, brace yourself

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Save me a headache, what are you saying? Are you saying that because men like FPS’s and women don’t, that it is OK for FPS’s to be marketed exclusively at men?

          • Hahaha says:

            XD nope I did point out this is targeted at a specific audience and that woman are sold products with sex just as much as men are.

            edit
            kinda, I’m saying that at THE MOMENT the core audience of this stuff is MEN and that this item is targeting that audience.

            Look at bronys, they have taken something and ran with it to the point where it’s almost accepted why aren’t woman doing this with FPS games (I’m choosing to use FPS here rather than all games and I’m guessing you know why ;) )
            ? in fact the last push were those godawful all girl clan that got flashed around as a marketing tool, why is there not a bigger grass roots movement?

            edit
            Quick question when/if the level of female FPS gamers has got to the point where FPS games are being directly marketed at you (see the coke ad) are you going to be complaining that they are using sex to sell to you (see coke ad) or would that be fine or do you think they wont use sex to sell to female gamers at all?

            edit
            off to work so no internet for the next 7 hours

            edit
            ARGHHH LEFT OUT FPS DOHHH…..I fixed it

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Yes, I don’t have a problem with using sex to sell, though you are deluded if you think a dildo strapped to a man’s leg is marketing aimed at women (Surely that’s for men with erectile dysfunction?)

            What I have a problem with is that if a teenaged girl into her slasher zombie horror wants a statue of an (supposedly) attractive man half eaten by a zombie, she can’t get one. I’m not saying that for every product released, an equal, opposite gender version must be released, I’m saying that it would be nice if a decent segment of the industry catered for the full spectrum of womens tastes too. Then we could feel a bit more included and when products like this were made, if women wanted one as well which catered to their sexuality, something similar was available.

            I think we agree, the only thing we disagree on is that you don’t realise that the current generation of female gamers could be into their fps’s in as big a way as men are and right now the potential market of female gamers is just as big as male gamers, but the marketers won’t let us in easily, it’s all for men at the moment. Which is why the grrl gamer thing is so predominant, that attitude is what happens when you make the industry such a boys club.

          • Milky1985 says:

            “From reading the comments, it seems people have a hard time agreeing on what is and isn’t misogyny. Maybe I’m being too literal-minded, but misogyny appears to mean hatred of women.”

            Yep this is what it means, now it does tend to be used as either a Synonym for sexist or to mean that its a worse kind of sexism, not sure if its the evolution of the language, I’m missing something in the discussions that its bought up in that takes it from sexism to misogyny or just people use it without really knowing what it means because it makes their point more hard hitting.

            I think one of the arguments is that misogynists treat women like sex objects and objectify them as they dislike them and its a way of keeping them down and under the heel, which is why its used in a lot of discussions about the objectification of women. Not sure tho as I think this was something i read about last time there was a RPS comment thread about this sort of thing.

          • HadToLogin says:

            How women-oriented shooter looks like?

          • Sheng-ji says:

            Tell you what hadtologin, why don’t you throw some of your ideas out there – if you genuinely can’t imagine a game with fps mechanics that appeals to women, maybe you could spend some time getting to know us and what we like and don’t.

            Personally, the fps’s which appeal to me most are the halo franchaise, the old rainbow six’s, quake 1, unreal and unreal tournament – stuff like that, but even they are quite testosterone filled.

          • Jenks says:

            Hey tcm

            Nothing is enticing me to buy it because it’s a piece of crap and I’m not a junk collector.

            The rest of your comment is pointless and has nothing to do with misogyny. If you think choosing one sex for a limited edition cracker jack prize is misogynistic, you must be one of those sad people outraged at just about everything.

          • Jenks says:

            “Personally, the fps’s which appeal to me most are the halo franchaise”

            I prefer the chicken franchaise.

          • GunnerMcCaffrey says:

            “what could you possibly mean by it “contributing to a misogynistic culture”?”

            Look, vondas, if you’re honestly coming to this discussion cold, and have never in your life thought about how men and women are treated differently in society, then… yeah, I don’t know what I could possibly say, and none of this will make sense to you. My point was just that this thing was released in a context of already-existing misogyny, not that it’s causing it.

          • Hahaha says:

            Yeah I think we do. It would be nice to have less BROFEST but at this time mainstream fps games are in this bs period and we have to wait till it ends and the new shite rolls about. Which you can help mold by showing that you are an audience that wants something different and which can provide enough revenue to be viable over BROFEST. If needs be create it and with good marketing you can fill the gap in the market and if it’s big enough others will take notice.

        • Stupoider says:

          I don’t quite understand. Would a female torso with modestly sized breasts be acceptable? Would a male torso be acceptable? Does gender even enter into it? Dead Island takes place on a bloody tropical island full of beaches and tourist locations. It is perhaps the ONE destination where walking around in bikinis is the norm. Surely if there’s any offence to be taken it’s from the sheer gore of the (ZOMBIE) model. Even in that case, Dead Island’s audience is going to be above the age of 18 (you would hope at least).

          • Premium User Badge perrypanic says:

            I’d say No (but I do think it’d make a slight difference if it wasn’t designed to be attractive), Yes (but still horrible and weird to own) and Yes.

            I don’t think that the accuracy of her wearing a bikini is the problem, it’s that she has been reduced to a faceless carcass whose only notable features are wounds and breasts. She’s presented as a sexualised victim of violence and that is very deeply problematic and probably mysogynistic

          • vondas says:

            See, I think it would be problematic if this was a game with pretensions of art. It’s not. As far as I could tell it is a snuff game. It does not seek to “raise problems” or reveal the wickedness of womankind, it seeks to entertain in a low-brow and sick way that is nonetheless appealing to its expected audience. Something tells me that most of the people who complain about it are not part of that audience in the first place.

            My take on it is that not all games have to be art, and not all games should be taken as serious statements on heavy issues. There is a place for this brand of rubbish too, but trying to analyze it from an art criticism standpoint (which is what this sounds like) seems at least a little bit misguided.

          • Hyomoto says:

            The answer is sex sells, its the point. Note it is a pair of tits, not an arm or hand or head. The sexism or mysogyny comments are stupid. There’s a bunch of men claiming women shouldnt be objectified, but they sure as hell don’t mind when a woman dresses real nice. They may have something to say about that, but it isn’t, “How dare you appeal to my masculine INTERESTS.” I’m a level-headed guy and I believe in equality, but I’m not immune to pretty women.

            And that’s what this is, not some thinly veiled attack on women. It’s a ploy to sell copies of a game using a pair of tits. Tasteless? Maybe. Stupid? Probably. It’s marketing, like an Axe commercial. Completely stupid and sexist designed to encourage horny men into buying a product. Proof women occupy the player two position, but not the cause.

          • Pathetic Phallacy says:

            “The sexism or mysogyny comments are stupid.”
            . . .

            “It’s marketing, like an Axe commercial. Completely stupid and SEXIST designed to encourage horny men into buying a product.”

            Herp-a-derp?

          • Hahaha says:

            Not sure if more disgusted by the blatant disregard of advertising to woman in the media by commentators on this site or this tacky statute….oh wait it’s the advertisement thing.

    • Eukatheude says:

      This, basically. It’s a zombie flick made game, why is everyone so surprised?

    • asshibbitty says:

      Raimi has said a bunch of times that he regrets the tree rape scene and wishes he’d never put it in. Somehow I doubt we’ll hear the same from the guy who designed that (or came up with that since it was probably designed in a mud hut in China) (although it would be nice if we did)

  6. sinister agent says:

    Oh but this isn’t important and everyone should shut up because something something Congo something third world something pointless.

    • Anabasis says:

      Video games are only trivial when someone is voicing a complaint I disagree with!

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      But men are objectified too! It’s just as bad for us!

      or

      But I like boobies! Stop talking about equality, it’s distracting me from looking at your boobies! You are trying to take away my civil rights by making me feel bad about looking at boobies!

  7. greg_ritter says:

    It’s kinda sad and good alltogether.
    Yes, they’ve listened to journalists, yes, they’ve issued an apology for those offended, that’s all good and awesome.
    But, honestly, looking at RPS last year, gaming journalism is becoming a thing about OH MY GOD ISSUES rather than about games. Yes, it is justified to raise your concerns and ask questions. But delibirately fucking looking for a thing to be offended about is ridiculous, and, honestly, appaling.
    Not all of the RPS crew looks this way, but, God damn, there are some people, who are seriously just looking to be offended by some meaningless thing and then it’s fire and brimstone and petitions and shit.
    Yes, you can try to change things and it’s certainly a good thing. Just do not become fucking PETA of gaming journalism. Please.

    • skinlo says:

      Most of the fuss is mainly from John however. Not the others.

      However he part owns it, so can do what he likes. And as he/they will say, we can always go somewhere else! :)

      • greg_ritter says:

        Of course.
        I just raised an opinion.

      • Dances to Podcasts says:

        Fuss Ro Dah!

        /sorry

      • f1x says:

        Can you mention some “somewhere else”?

        Because as much as I like this discussions and I like to participate I would like also to have another site to read more strictly about game news and reviews

        • Nurse Aenima says:

          Well,

          I’m also getting tired of the constant whining and pol-cor vibe of this site. I play rpgs mostly, so I could reccomend you Gamebanshee and rpgcodex. Wargamer.com is good for all strategy news. For general gaming news , Forbes got really decent section. Not sure where to read about mainstream AAA titles and fps, I’m not into them personally.

          • f1x says:

            Thats nice enough ;) thanks

            I do play a lot of RPGs aswell so that should do it… for a while!

        • SuperNashwanPower says:

          I’ve been thinking of going back to PC Gamer. They seem to have a lot more games coverage, even if the site is more commercial. Plus Evan Lahti is a jolly nice fellow.

          Are there any sites dedicated to open world games and their mods?

          • LennyLeonardo says:

            You could, like, um, read both?

          • SuperNashwanPower says:

            Like a broken 2B pencil, you are totally missing the (not very hard) point.

    • Feferuco says:

      I’d bet that they didn’t look for it and instead they got it sent to them. If not RPS then other websites. They most likely got a press release with this. Besides, looking for things is what they do, it is why we read them, because they look for stuff. When looking you find nice things, and RPS shows us plenty of cool things, but you also find some not so nice things. There’s value in bringing both of them up as they’re all part of video games.

      If they didn’t deliberately look for things I wouldn’t read them.

      Also, you should have chosen a different article to vent. Because this one shows an example of something that’s incredibly terrible and objectionable in a number of ways. This is far from being too touchy. Venting on this article specifically makes it sound like you think people are being too sensitive over this.

      • greg_ritter says:

        But i do.
        Yes, this torso-thing is stupid, and I wouldn’t buy it. But somebody could. People, who collect such grotesque and shocking things exist. Or else there wouldn’t be collectible figures from Hellraiser or figurines from Todd MacFarlane

        • Feferuco says:

          Yeah and there are people who collect clipped finger nails and worn children’s underwear but we’re not about to start selling those around, are we.

          I guess what I’m saying is everyone isn’t worse off if this thing gets scrapped.

    • draglikepull says:

      I would love to know how you’ve read peoples’ minds through the Internet to determine that they’re “delibirately fucking looking for a thing to be offended about” and that they’re not, you know, just actually bothered by it.

      • greg_ritter says:

        Well, now.
        I, of course, can be wrong, but, it seems, there was no month in the last year that was not touched by some new issue about race, sex or sexual orientation.
        It honestly looks like the new montly series “Issues”

        • Premium User Badge RobF says:

          Close, it’s because the industry is a cesspit of sexist pigshit. But not a bad guess all told.

    • Snargelfargen says:

      It’s funny how primed RPS comments are for this sort of debate now too. For better or worse ISSUES seem to be on everybody’s minds these days, it’s like we can’t help picking a collective scab.

      • greg_ritter says:

        Well, yes, there is that to.
        And I’m, of couse, guilty of this too.

      • gwathdring says:

        I don’t see what’s odd about big, touchy social subjects easily getting everyone to respond. If someone talked about graduate school woes I’d be all over that article, too, but that’s less permeating a topic than sexism in the media because fewer people are graduate students than are aware of (or, as it happens, violently certain of the non-existence of) issues pertaining to sexism in gaming media.

      • realmenhuntinpacks says:

        Word up pol! And that’s a good thing. I like a little political engagement with my games news. Doesn’t it feel like the medium’s maturing when there’s this vigorous back and forth? Every other medium has this frisson of debate bubbling around at all times – pointless controversies and real ones, little stupid issues and big fucking nasty ones getting engaged with all over the place. There’s plenty of apolitical news sites if you’re sick of hearing the debate, but I’d say stick with it and add your voice. Passione! Resolution! культурные гласности!

    • quijote3000 says:

      Thank you

  8. granderojo says:

    This apology seems a bit hollow considering in the original game there was an ability dubbed “Feminist Whore.”

    • WoundedBum says:

      It’s probably a little unfair to criticise the entire developer over that, while it was a stupid, stupid thing, it could easily have been one guy messing around. If it’s been stated otherwise, apologies.

    • Premium User Badge wengart says:

      I don’t ever recall that being a perk in the game. I only made it halfway through though (just entered the jungle area) so maybe I missed it.

  9. Mr Shanty says:

    If I were a cynical man, I’d say this was intentional to stir up the press and get some sales, because it sure as hell wont sell for being a good game.

  10. Dushanan says:

    Will the collector’s edition include a plastic piece of meat now? Because that might allow me to overlook how bad the actual game is.

  11. GunnerMcCaffrey says:

    “We’re sorry you’re all a little more well emotionally-adjusted than we wagered and that we couldn’t milk the controversy for more than a day. Now pardon us while we fuck along to the bank.”

  12. WoundedBum says:

    (read this somewhere else but made me chuckle)

    She takes your hand.

    Things are going well. This might be the night.

    Do you go back to your house or hers?

    Yours it is.

    She sure is beautiful.

    You offer a drink. She gratefully accepts.

    You go to the kitchen, leaving her alone in your lavishly decorated livingroom.

    “WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT?”, you hear her usually angelic voice cry.

    You dash back in, curious as to what could cause such distress.

    She has found your collectors edition Dead Island: Riptide dismembered chest statue.

    “Look at the detail” you exclaim. “It’s my Dead Island collector’s edition statue!”

    “Why would you want that she cries?” She hasn’t noticed the bikini tailored to your country, surely?

    Maybe she’s a simpleton.

    She leaves.

    Philistine.

    You lie awake in bed, your only company your dog. He knows your not a bad person.

    He knows the Master Chief statue would have been better. The last one liked him.

    He lies contented, knowing that for one more night, he has you all to himself.

  13. Branthog says:

    I agree that this is absolutely stupid, but I can’t get too worked up over it as I exhausted my supply of give-a-fuck on this subject after an entire 2012 of the unending navel-gazing echo-chamber.

  14. kattglufsare says:

    Oh come on! Stop with these twisted morals! Sex and violence have been a large part of adult entertainment since years. How come combining the two is considered so problematic all of the sudden?

    Gaming do not inspire anyone to commit violent crimes. Why would a statuette inspire people to commit violent sexacts? It may be incredible ugly and stupid, absolutely, but to react in this manner just because you feel a little bit offended? Come on people!

    • TCM says:

      Women in refrigerators.

      Now available in convenient, bite sized statue form!

      I have no problem with sex n’ violence, I have a problem when game companies decide to pander to the adolescent audience in the most obvious, distasteful, disgusting, and offensive way possible.

      • skinlo says:

        Get over it? Some people would like it. Why can’t people be offended?

        • DerNebel says:

          PERSONAL OPINION: Okay. Some people would like it. Some people would be appalling cripples of the mind, either unable to see the connotations of this “piece” or simply incredibly hateful.

          This isn’t art or entertainment. This is business and we are the customers. If you’re fine being treated as, and by extension represented as, female-hating shutins playing 80s zombie flicks then go sit still. People can be offended. That’s what you’re seeing here. That’s people being offended. /END

          This is business. When enough people are offended, this statue becomes bad business, and it’s taken down. This is not censorship, it’s money. Stop trying to confuse the two.

    • John Walker says:

      Just so you know, RPS has no problem with the concept of sex and violence in games. We sometimes have problems with how it’s presented.

  15. FeiFae says:

    See what you did? Now I kind of want it. Not because I find it amazing/awesome/sexy. Hell no. I want it because it would be piece of gaming history right there on my desk, the most controversial piece of gaming swag! I’d carry it around with me to big gaming shows and tell boothbabes to grope it for pictures!

    Now it’s ruined. Forever.

  16. destroy.all.monsters says:

    i fail to see any reason for them to apologize at all. It’s no different from guro.

    I don’t see any superiority of being PC to the same censorship mentality coming out of the right.

    Don’t like it, don’t buy it. No one is forcing you to love it any more than Hollywood is forcing me to watch another horrible Die Hard movie or its ilk.

    If the world were tailored only for my tastes there would be a lot of people that would be utterly bored.

    • zeroskill says:

      NO! Justice has been served this day, see.

    • P7uen says:

      You don’t get it, it’s not just about being PC…

      It’s on consoles too.

    • tomeoftom says:

      It’s not that it’s tasteless, it’s that it’s tasteless & puts forth a backwards and unfair perspective of women.

      • destroy.all.monsters says:

        I have no doubt that if it were a stocky, hirsute woman wearing overalls there would still be complaining.

        Misogyny in gaming is a meme, not a reality. Yes, some gamers are misogynists and others are jerks but saying gaming itself is misogynistic is ridiculous. You might as well throw your lot in with the “it’s all gaming’s fault” mentality that shows itself after every shooting incident.

        Just because a vocal minority of people want to essentially put all female gaming characters into the equivalent of Mao-era suits doesn’t mean that it will sell – or that it’s a better solution. It also doesn’t mean that I’m cheerleading the newest iteration of DOA. This insistence that there is no middle ground or no real solution other than kvetch endlessly is tiresome and doesn’t advance the conversation.

        • gwathdring says:

          Sexism happens in games. Sexism permeates society. Saying there isn’t sexism in games is like saying there isn’t existentialism in games. It’s part of our culture; it happens. Cultural tropes and influences end up in our media and sometimes those elements are negative either in how they influence the media specifically or more generally.

          Say what you want about specific cases.

          “Just because a vocal minority of people want to essentially put all female gaming characters into the equivalent of Mao-era suits”

          You don’t have to talk to that vocal minority. I haven’t even seen it hanging about recently. There is a middle ground on this issue and all the others. There are lots of us, we have wildly varying opinions, and we like these big long comment threads because we get to read a wide variety of opinions and write long comment posts.

          You could always talk to us. Unless of course, you’re the other side of the coin you’re complaining about–then you and I have very little to talk about.

          • destroy.all.monsters says:

            I would agree that certain games, or gamers, are sexist. However, sexism does not equate (at least to my mind and many others) to misogyny.

            I would say stereotypes exist in games and permeates society. The stereotypes aren’t limited to lithe women as sex objects though. When was the last time you played an effeminate man in a video game? When was the last time a gay man wasn’t portrayed in most media as a “flamer”? Where are the positive representatives of those that don’t fit neatly into the usual stereotypical gender roles? Focusing on a solitary issue, or a solitary sex (as opposed to gender) as if it were *the issue* negates the bigger picture.

            What I wouldn’t say is that guro is either sexist or misogynistic. To me, this reminds me of guro without the inherently fetishistic content. Furthermore women as victims in horror movies as part of a trope has existed since at least the late 1970s yet only Deep Silver get caught out on it due to a simple bust. It’s the perfect example of something blown all out of proportion for political gain (i.e. serves the interests of those who would throw their lot in with Sarkeesian and her ilk).

            I’m not saying that in the commenters here aren’t a thoughtful group of people in the middle ground. I do resent RPS making a stupid plastic torso into zomg teh most horrible misogynistic thing evar. I’m overstating things a little but really this is so much a non-issue I find it repugnant. RPS shouldn’t be mirroring the right’s tactics – and then acting as if it were better.

            I also find it ironic that Deep Silver which happens to have strong female protagonists – like Purna – get nailed for this. It reminds me all too much of the policing the left loves to do to itself until it becomes utterly irrelevant; because no one is too pure.

          • gwathdring says:

            I don’t know enough about Deep Silver’s games to comment on how unfair it is for them to be caught out.

            “I would say stereotypes exist in games and permeates society. The stereotypes aren’t limited to lithe women as sex objects though. When was the last time you played an effeminate man in a video game? When was the last time a gay man wasn’t portrayed in most media as a “flamer”? Where are the positive representatives of those that don’t fit neatly into the usual stereotypical gender roles? Focusing on a solitary issue, or a solitary sex (as opposed to gender) as if it were *the issue* negates the bigger picture. ”

            I disagree. Sort of. I’d argue that diffusing every issue by saying “there’s a bigger picture” to the point that no one is allowed to criticize individual components of a problem is every bit as counter-productive as presenting a single issue as *the issue*. Which is why I endeavor very hard to do neither of those in my own arguments.

            I tend to lean towards the smaller scale when possible, though. I like to add as much flavor and context and relativism to a discussion as I can, but there’s a point where we stop talking about anything and stop arguing in favor of just generically pontificating in slightly different directions, no matter how nuanced the opinions inspiring those particular directions might be.

            I think I said it best in a conversation about sexism party-way through the Cyberpunk thread in the forums. A non-sexist society has to have room for gender bias in the same way that a random coin toss has to have room for tails coming up seven times in a row. Fluctuating inequities are inevitable in a truly egalitarian system. This makes it difficult to deal with borderline cases. Perhaps Deep Silver plays off of tropes that appear sexist to genre outsiders but are simply a part of the traditions of said genre–but perhaps the origins of those tropes or the tropes themselves have issues beyond the scope of Deep Silver’s intentions as well.

            There’s nothing wrong with showing characters naked, portraying characters as sexy, portraying characters even as sexual objects to be fetishized. But when there is a consistent (i.e. non-random) inequity in the way these things are done in media, specifically in video games and video game advertising, we have an obligation to ask why. When those inequities map onto larger-scale inequities in our society we have an obligation to investigate the correlation and to insure we are neither perpetuating them nor invoking them incautiously–that is, if we want to improve this medium. I do.

            I’m more than happy to discuss the frequent mishandling of atypical sexual orientations and genders in media. I’m more than happy to approach fixing social issues and their intersections with media in a bottom up fashion–the most oppressed first, the most privileged oppressed class last. Things tend not to happen that way, though, and I’d just as soon address inequity for white, middle-class women as not address inequity at all.

            Essentially, for me it comes down to this: we can talk about why this discussion isn’t as important as other discussions or we could enact my preferred, two part plan: 1) Have this discussion and 2) Have those other, more important discussions. Social issues are complicated. We can’t always trust our own thoughts and feelings, let alone those of others. It’s a mess. We lie to ourselves and have implicit assumptions that usually flash by too fast for us to notice explicitly, and so forth. As such, I’m much more concerned about avoiding talking about important things than I am about having a possibly unimportant discussion. I’m more worried that some of the “It’s not that big a deal” talk is a symptom of the problem than I am that a rational, in depth discussion will lead to some kind of irrational catastrophe.

            Questioning our instantaneous assumptions is important in dealing with insidious social issues like sexism. I don’t care especially for John Walker’s approach, but I like the discussion. And you know, that’s quite possibly the main reason he keeps posting these things. If is in fact the case, I revise: I might not agree with his opinions, but I applaud the approach.

      • gwathdring says:

        Why can’t it be that it’s tasteless? As someone further up mentioned, it’s not about censorship. If enough potential customers think it’s tasteless crap, then maybe it doesn’t belong in the collectors edition on account of simply being a bad business decision.

        That’s not to say it can’t also be bad for other reasons, but there is a difference between “Ban all the things we don’t like” and “Ew, gross … I don’t want to buy that .. seriously guys? You just lost a customer.” One is problematic and the other is harmless, personal taste. I don’t think we need to defend the later. It’s a perfectly reasonable response.

  17. wu wei says:

    It comes across as a non-apology apology to me:

    [A] decision was made to include a gruesome statue of a zombie torso, which was cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island.

    Man up and own your mistake, Deep Silver.

  18. Citrus says:

    YAY. Can’t wait for RPS to start campaign about racism in video games. With so many white heroes saving the world and shooting up brown people, I guess that hasn’t offended RPS to write articles.. yet. Can’t wait to see a new movement dedicated to this issue. Not being sarcastic..

    Anyways, that torso was just disgusting.

    • Premium User Badge Stellar Duck says:

      Um. Far Cry 3 ring any bells?

      • Citrus says:

        Haha seriously? One small post over FarCry 3 with half of the article dedicated to how it “may or may not be racist”?

        Hilarious. But not unexpected.

  19. porps says:

    hang on let me just check… yep, still dont care about some harmless statue. But well done for giving them they publicity they wanted, job well done daily mai… er… RPS

  20. SkittleDiddler says:

    Can we all shut the fuck up about this topic now? Please? Let’s get back to talking about VIDEO GAMES AND VIDEO GAMING.

    • TCM says:

      If you want to escape the issues of the real world, I’d recommend turning off your internet connection, and closing the curtains.

      • Stupoider says:

        Tackling the issues of the real world, one RPS comment at a time.

        • TCM says:

          Ridiculing the forum it’s discussed in, the cause it is appealing to, or the size of the demographic doesn’t change the fact that it is a real world issue.

          • Freddybear says:

            And here I thought gaming was about escaping from reality.

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        That’s the problem: this issue has been covered to the point of oversaturation. I despise sexism and its continued presence in this world, but I come to RPS to learn about video games and video gaming — unfortunately the fact that a video game is even involved in this is secondary to RPS’s need for a hair-trigger response to a hot button topic.

        I can go to a dozen other sites if I want to read about people’s depressing overreactions to a marketing gimmick for a product that glorifies killing women (and men) in their bathing suits. RPS should be above all this tabloid proselytizing.

        • biggergun says:

          basically, this

        • Premium User Badge Morangie says:

          I can go to a dozen other sites if I want to read about people’s depressing overreactions to a marketing gimmick for a product that glorifies killing women (and men) in their bathing suits.

          And you could go to a hundred other sites if all you want is press releases and new trailers. Why come to RPS, if not for these writers and their writing?

        • GunnerMcCaffrey says:

          “this issue has been covered to the point of oversaturation.”

          As long as misogyny is still a problem, this isn’t the case.

    • John Walker says:

      I just want to check that you noticed all the other posts on the site today?

      • sinister agent says:

        But when you put up a new article, the article on the bottom dies! :-(

        • Premium User Badge Stellar Duck says:

          Hahaha! Thank you! That was the best thing I’ve read today I think. And I’ve been browsing the Crusader Kings 2 forums after a patch and DLC.

      • InsanityBringer says:

        curious that this request for more varied content gets brought up so much. One of the things I liked about RPS from when I first started reading it was that there was always a fair variety in the day’s postings, and this still holds true to this day.

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        Yeah, I saw those. I even read some of them!

        I think I’ll just try to avoid these reactionary “sexism in video games” articles from now on.

        • Eddy9000 says:

          You avoid ‘reactionary sexism articles’, we get to avoid your reactionary ‘this isn’t sexism’ comments. Everyone wins!

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            Where did I claim “this isn’t sexism”? Don’t put words in my mouth, dipshit.

    • trjp says:

      That doesn’t bring in the level of traffic they need to support the site dude ;)

  21. JBantha says:

    I don’t see why this raised as much noise as it did. It is a nice sculpture for a very specific audience with a taste of gore.
    If you don’t like gore, you don’t buy it.
    I’ve seen post on this blog about games on slavery and no ones raises an eye-brown.
    I really like gore, and I really like that sculpture, but beyond that this has become a noise over personal taste.
    And I expect to buy this thing. Despite you pointing me,or many of my zombie loving girlfriends taht really liked it too, as a misogynist.

    This really changes my opinion of RPS.

  22. shivars says:

    I didn’t find it offensive or stupid. Neither do I perceive it to objectify or sexualise women (I am male, admittedly).

    I actually thought it was ok/good.

    Would it be awfully controversial of me to suggest that it might be a little sexist for people to overreact so much at this?

    It is, after all, a piece about a zombie game set on a tropical island. tropical islands with holidaymakers tend to have lots of people in beachwear, including bikinis. All people are one gender or the other. Why is it intrinsically evil to use one gender over another? Why would it not have been equally sexist if it were a male torso?

    Oh yeah, because of all the other things people have said/done about other games and other things.

    Fine, people were offended/upset. And Deep Silver apologised, either because they agree it was ‘wrong’, or other reasons (good or bad).

    Not everyone is upset. Not everyone sees it as misogynistic/sexist/offensive/etc/etc/etc.

    Edit: having now read a few other comments, I’d also like to agree this does change my opinion of RPS, negatively. RPS post some truly great games journalism. IMO this is just a kneejerk populist rant :(

    • asshibbitty says:

      Because of the difference between oppressor and oppressed goddamn why is this so fucking hard to understand for you people

      • greg_ritter says:

        And who is opressed? I’m not being a smart-ass, but are you positive that women in your country are so opressed, that strong, beatiful male journalist must leap to the rescue?

        • TCM says:

          White folk shouldn’t ever object to the treatment of minorities, men shouldn’t ever stand up for women, and straight folk should never help the cause of LGTBQ people.

          Is that the argument you are making?

          • asshibbitty says:

            hes reciting a dumbass meme

          • greg_ritter says:

            Of course no, this is the argument you wish I was making.

          • TCM says:

            Then why do you object?

            White knighting this isn’t. Walker’s not bringing this up to earn ‘brownie points’ with women, or get laid, or whatever stupid thing you feel is objectionable when a man defends women’s right to not be sex objects. He’s bringing it up because it is genuinely objectionable that this could be seen as acceptable, by anyone. To bring attention to something awful, not to say GET BEHIND ME WOMEN I SHALL TAKE THIS BLOW.

          • zeroskill says:

            Self esteem is the magic word.

          • Stupoider says:

            Is the portrayal of women in bikinis at a tourist resort off limits, then? Are women who wear bikinis relegating themselves to the position of “sex objects”?

          • TCM says:

            A woman in a bikini is perfectly tasteful.

            Applying exagerrated boob size and physics, zooming the camera in lovingly at every bounce (dead or alive) is more questionable.

            Handing out a statue of a woman’s dismembered torso where the only untouched part of her body is her boobs is horrific.

          • Stupoider says:

            Ah, yes. You’d rather have the boobs dismembered too. Finally, a man of taste!

          • biggergun says:

            >a man defends women’s right to not be sex objects, on a website about video games

            This. I think I’m safe to say that the main reason of the upheaval in the comments section is that many people find this quite ridiculous. Ridiculous, not offending or provoking. Just, you know, inherently funny.

          • distrocto says:

            “Is the portrayal of women in bikinis at a tourist resort off limits, then?”
            Obviously it is, what a stupid question, we had already established that almost an entire decade ago.
            http://www.historybyzim.com/2012/06/bathing-suit-arrests-chicago-1922/

      • vondas says:

        “The difference between the oppressor and the oppressed” strikes me as somewhat dubious rhetoric. To be sure, there is a difference, and it should inform our debate to some extent, but ultimately, it’s not as though we aren’t ALL oppressed also, by mass culture, in your apparently rather broad sense of the word “oppressed”. I think that is an important starting point – not that men are keeping women down, but that society as a whole, including men and women (let’s not pretend women are never involved in things like that), can enforce some norms based on gender or race or religion or what ever have you that some of you might find unconscionable for one reason or another.

        • asshibbitty says:

          I’m not sure what your point is. Gender inequality is not some kinda wild unproven theory, it is statistical reality. It exists and it benefits one sex over the other in an overwhelming variety of cases. It’s not a conspiracy though, and it’s not a zero sum war of the sexes situation. Nobody who’s alive today can be blamed for establishing it, but the deniers and blame-shifters can eat a dick.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          Straight while male aged 16-40 complains of oppression. Paints his bedroom black and refuses to tidy his floor in act of defiance at an unfair world.

    • Fox89 says:

      “Why would it not have been equally sexist if it were a male torso?”

      It might have been. But it wasn’t. And it never is.

      I think that’s really the point about all this stuff, especially when the argument “no one would be moaning if it was a dude”. Well, here’s the thing: if some of these stupidly sexist promotions were actually doing that, there would be some semblance of equality. But seeing as they’re not, they aren’t. How many times does the fuzzy flesh-coloured shape behind the shower glass turn out to be a guy?

      [hypothetical]
      Let’s swap out terms for a moment. Think of it not in terms of gender but race, because that seems to be much easier to equate. You have a bunch of marketing material from game publishers constantly depicting black people in demeaning stereotypes. “Oh, but you wouldn’t have a problem with it if they were doing it to white guys too,” comes the challenge.

      Right. But they’re not.
      [/hypothetical]

      • vondas says:

        Now, see, this is a much better point. I agree with the analysis. I don’t see what you are suggesting to do about it, other than continuously voice disapproval and hope someone listens.

        I think a good thing to do would be to try and put together a game that deliberately reverses all those things.

      • distrocto says:

        This doesn’t have anything to do with the (long proven and constantly paying) target audience, obviously? It’s gotta be sexism!
        Are you complaining about men not modeling dresses for women or generally talking being somewhat disinterested in fashion too? And do you think this would all be the same way if the game was specifically targetted at other audiences? For instance http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otome_game

        Business, how does it work…

  23. asshibbitty says:

    Deep Silver is becoming a shitshow.

  24. excel_excel says:

    Wait, it might be pulled?……now I MUST HAVE IT.
    The most gruesome part is the big bone coming out of the neck…..just…..blergh.

    • Premium User Badge Morangie says:

      Get a female mannequin, throw away the arms, legs and head, splash some red paint on it (taking care not to get any on the breasts of course) then put a bikini on it. Now you don’t have to waste money on a special edition of the game either!

  25. FionaSarah says:

    Hey Deep Silver, stop being complete shitbags and this wouldn’t have to happen. Again.

  26. draglikepull says:

    The problem is not that it is a gory statue. The problem is that the statue is sexualising extreme violence. It’s not an accident that the statue is of a woman in a bikini. The point of the statue is “She may be dead and she may not have a head, but she’s still pretty hot, amirite?” It’s literal objectification of women’s bodies.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      THANK YOU!!!

    • greg_ritter says:

      Or it may very well mean “HOLY SHIT THOSE ZOMBIES ATE THIS POOR WOMAN”

      • Premium User Badge Morangie says:

        Take Dead Island out of this altogether and look at the torso on its own. Would you associate that with zombies without knowing where it came from? Because all I see is a model of a woman’s dismembered corpse.

      • gritz says:

        “HOLY SHIT ZOMBIES ATE THIS POOR WOMAN AND NOW I WOULD LIKE TO OWN THE SEXIEST PARTS OF HER REMAINS”

    • Rapzid says:

      A statue of a body literally objectifies what it represents? Say it aint so!

  27. InsanityBringer says:

    I don’t really understand this whole thing as of late about trying to be offensive in extremely tasteless manners (like that one “offensive” doom mod that was shown on I think Kotaku a bit back). I really don’t mind being offended in certain situations, when things are done right, but this just seems sick for the sole purpose of being sick. Like, I don’t really mind the idea of making a sexy figure as long as it is at least reasonably tasteful (if this was stripped of all the gore, it still would be tasteless in my eyes.), and I guess at some level I don’t really mind the idea of making a violent figure (though I wouldn’t buy your collectors edition if your bonus was a gory figure, since that’s not the kind of thing I want to display), and maybe one or both of these make me a bit insensitive. But this just crosses many lines in my head. An ugly figure (not ugly in the sense that I don’t approve of the figure’s features) combined with gore. Not really my thing at all.

    Then again, it probably was designed to cater to a sick group of individuals. Meh. Obviously not a group I want to spend any time with, and I don’t really need to go out of my way to avoid them considering that I don’t like the content that they make and consume.

  28. biggergun says:

    So, a blessed age when gaming was one media notably free of ISSUES is ending, and soon we will see gaming gender studies, gaming grassroots activism and gaming fair trade vegan latte. Sigh. Well, no point fighting the inevitable, I guess. I think I might take up knitting.

    • Premium User Badge Morangie says:

      Gaming was never free of these issues, they just aren’t being ignored anymore.

      • greg_ritter says:

        Yes, instead they are being cried aloud about.
        Finally, the shadow of a great political correctness lies on the gaming.
        Too bad that people can’t see very well, though.

        • TCM says:

          ‘Political Correctness’ is reducing everything down to baby talk for fear of offending everyone.

          This is objecting to something that is genuinely offensive to the majority of people who see it.

          I am offended at the suggestion that I might be sold on a collector’s edition because it includes such a thing. I am offended at the continuing stereotype of gamers as male basement dwellers who will like anything with tits on it regardless of the taste or tact thereof. I am offended by the continuing, rampant reduction of women to 2-3 character types, all of which are designed to appeal to the ‘male gamer’ stereotype.

          • greg_ritter says:

            And are you offended that some guy could buy this thing?

          • biggergun says:

            >I am offended at the continuing stereotype of gamers as male basement dwellers

            You know, a lot of gamers are secure enough not to be offened by silly stereotypes. Just saying.

          • TCM says:

            It’s a silly stereotype.

            That doesn’t change the fact people will buy into it, and get ideas about you.

            I’m offended not because it applies to me, but because people THINK it applies to me.

          • Eddy9000 says:

            Not so long ago calls to rename the colour “nigger brown” to “deep tan” were considered to be political correctness gone mad. Making homosexuality legal was decried as sending society down the slippery slope to moral ruin. Now people don’t want to see sexualised torsos of violently attacked women used to market videogames, those nutty liberals.

          • biggergun says:

            Must be really hard. Being constantly offended by what some random people might probably think of you because of what some other random people might have said, I mean. Out of interest, how do you cope?

      • biggergun says:

        I’m sorry if I was unclear, I meant ISSUES, not issues.

    • asshibbitty says:

      Would you like to purchase a severed rubber titty to remind you of that wonderful time?

      • biggergun says:

        I’m not against the idea, but I’m afraid I’ll be court-martialed right at the store for sexualising violence, mysogyny and high treason.

        • asshibbitty says:

          So what you’re saying is you are the victim here, you feel your freedoms are threatened. You even go as far as to suggest that the post is covertly demanding a ban on distasteful items such as this one and persecution for people who try to obtain them. If you have any balls at all man, you’d buy this thing and proudly display it at every opportunity, as all freedom fighters do with their symbols.

          e. I think i’ve mistaken you for some other guy in this thread, sorry. too many peole w randomized avs

  29. StranaMente says:

    The good thing of these comments is that I can clearly mark which people to block. The frightening thing is that now there are entire blocked conversations made by those people patting each other on the back.
    Anyway, I approve the work of RPS and other sites that commented the way they did on this news.
    I hate that they received publicity for this stunt, but at least the smarter people will remember what they did and won’t fall for that.
    Good work John and Rps.

    • greg_ritter says:

      Sir, let me congratulate you for this great way to make your world much simpler and more pleasing. Ah, if only other people were so blessed with a practical and great inclination to shut other people’s traps and do not listen to those bastards. A knavish and filthy lot those people are, indeed.

      • TCM says:

        Personally, I block people who give me a headache when I read them.

        I don’t block them because they disagree with me, but because of the noise, fury, and nonsense with which they do it.

        It’s the same as how I have tuned out the noise of Michael Moore, Sean Hannity, and other very loud, obnoxious, stupid people — who either make me feel stupid by association of my beliefs and causes with theirs, or make me feel bad that people who disagree with me have such a person acting as their mouthpiece.

        Congrats, you’ve joined this exclusive club.

        • Premium User Badge Stellar Duck says:

          “I don’t block them because they disagree with me, but because of the noise, fury, and nonsense with which they do it.”

          This is an important distinction. I’ve read the same tedious replies any number of times by now and am frankly tired of the noise. I’ve had these discussions many times and will happily read a good post that disagrees with me. But I can’t be arsed to keep reading the people who try to short circuit or shut down the discussion with their rantings.

          So aside from being interesting, Johns pieces on stuff like this serves as a great tool for calibrating my block list.

          • StranaMente says:

            This, exactly. I don’t block people just because I disagree with them. Funnily enough the first to respond is one of those I blocked.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          I couldn’t agree more! I realise I may actually be on your blocklists, but I promise I’m working very hard on how I react to the crap and am proud of myself as to how well I’m doing!

    • Xari says:

      Does it help your self-esteem to announce to the world that you know how to use block functions on video game sites?

  30. Reinou says:

    I’m honestly disappointed in RPS.

    • derella says:

      Does my approval of them having a conscience cancel out your disappointment?

  31. spongthe1st says:

  32. Beernut says:

    “Deep Silver told Poly [...]”

    They didn’t tell Polygon anything:

    “Reached for comment this morning, Deep Silver UK said they were looking into our questions and would be responding. While they still haven’t responded to our direct questions, including whether the collector’s edition will still be offered, they did take to Twitter to apologize this afternoon.”

    The statement is from Deep Silver’s twitter and sounds like a generic press release rather than a directed message to anyone in particular.

  33. Eddy9000 says:

    I just wanted to say why I think this is offensive and should be reported as such, in response to the “it was never offensive and withdrawing it was stupid” arguments here on the thread.

    I’ll start with the fundamental argument made against reporting games developer output in a political manner: that it is “just a…”, as in “just a game” or “just a piece of games marketing”. Nothing is “just a…” all creative output is fed into by social attitudes and cultural norms, this is sociology 101, all things happen for a reason and ideology is present in all expression. This is nowhere more apparent as in business and PR output, which has been designed, discussed and passed through a team of people paid a good salary to sell the game; they will discuss with each other “what can we produce to sell this game the best to our audience?”

    Now onto the torso itself. Riptide is a zombie game that occurs in a beach setting, there are zombies and zombies have attacked people. Lets remember that a significant part of the game, the zombies were not used for the figurine. So that leaves the zombies victims. People at the beach are statistically likely to be roughly 50/50 men and women, of those men and women there will be a vast diversity in ages and body shapes. A person dismembered by a zombie will also be comprised of a number of pieces, feet, hands, head and torso. From this vast range of options which would adequately represent the content of the game the developers went with the torso of a woman of a young age, slim figure and breast shape that is traditionally considered sexual in western culture. Although many of the victims of a beach zombie attack would be male, older, overweight they deliberately used the torso of a sexually desireable woman which prominently features her breasts, a part of a woman commonly associated with sexual desirability. The breasts are detached from the woman through the woman’s dismemberment and used to sell the game, suggesting that these are the important part of a woman. Around the torso are marks of brutality and violence, juxtaposing the objectification of women with violence against them, two processes linked in society and forming an uncomfortable combination here.

    If you do not find this offensive please ask yourself: why from all the other options available did this statuette end up being of a young sexualised womans breasts rather than any other gender, age group, physical makeup and body part?

    I’d like to address some of the other criticisms made here of the reporting of the article. The first being that it gives the company more publicity. This is true, but it is debateable whether this is good or bad publicity, also the objectification of women is a cultural norm especially in games development, it is the status quo, it has existed before being called out and ignoring it did not make it go away in the past, and will not make it go away now. Reporting this kind of thing for what it is will never make it more prevalent than ignoring it. Another thing is the attempt to portray the reporting of this as ‘just something RPS/John’s into”, it isn’t, it has been decried across the gaming press. This of course leads to the counter-criticism that people are hopping on a “bandwagon”. You can’t have it both ways, devaluing a viewpoint as niche if held by one person and disingenuous if held by many is simply an attempt to devalue the viewpoint by attacking credibility, it’s cheap and it does not address the subject matter being discussed; I don’t care if sexism in games is a special interest for John, or if the gaming press have said “lets report this as sexist, will be great for our clicks!), it has no relevance to the actual idea being put forward: argue against the ideas not the authors credibility. Say why you don’t think it is sexist or misogynist rather just saying it isn’t or that it’s just the authors ‘thing’ or else your argument holds no merit.

    • Stupoider says:

      I don’t associate beaches with overweight old men. It may surprise you but there are beaches that don’t share the same demographics as Blackpool.

      • Eddy9000 says:

        Clearly the beaches you go to have an over abundance of sexually attractive women’s dismembered torsos. Sorry, not buying it.

        • Tuimic says:

          There are many beaches around the world that only attract a young demographic. There are also many beaches where larger, older men and and women, are asked not to take their t-shirts off and leave. Some beaches have rules. Some don’t allow kids, some don’t allow clothes, some don’t allow men, some don’t allow women, some don’t allow topless sunbathing. Most even have guards who patrol up and down the beach and enforce these rules.

    • Baresark says:

      No one here should really care why you find it offensive, there was a whole other thread where that opinion is way more relevant than the one where you wrote your comment. It just comes off as egotistical that you would write that big wall of text on the article that has them apologizing for the whole thing. You feel often that you need to be heard? Do you feel your opinion on the other article is so transcendent that you need to place it in this thread as well?

      Also, breasts are not in and of themselves sexualized, what kind of broken human being are you? If you find this sexualized, which is defined as “made sexual” by the mere presence of breasts, you should seek professional help.

      • Eddy9000 says:

        And here it is ladies and gentlemen, a classic example of attacking the authors credibility. Perhaps I am the most vile egotistical man in history (nice appeal to mental illness to deride someone as well – stay classy) but you still haven’t said anything about why this PR stunt isn’t offensive. And if you don’t agree that the statuette and the breasts on it are of a size and shape and adorned in clothing commonly presented as sexual by the media and frequently desired by men then we obviously live on different planets.

        And yes, I wrote a lot because I have a lot to say and would like it to be heard. Why would one post on a web forum if they didn’t want anyone to read it? Why did you even bother posting?

        • Baresark says:

          Because your post was almost completely irrelevant to the story at hand. I just didn’t want you to get away feeling like you are some kind of hero for jumping on the bandwagon and not putting an ounce of rational thought into the matter. You find it offensive, that’s cool. I don’t find it offensive but I’m also not running out trying to get mine. The thing, in the end, is just an ugly piece I wouldn’t want to put on my shelf. I have a tendency to disagree with the band wagon because it’s only in disagreement that any meaning discussion is had. No one benefits from everyone agreeing with the author. And I’m not going to agree because I don’t like it or I find it uncomfortable to look at.

          Most of the arguments presented against the piece are people trying to justify their feelings on it. They don’t like how it makes them feel, that is fine. But they need to find a way to destroy it, and that is just wrong. You needed to see an end to it because you didn’t like it rather than being an adult and just ignoring it. But I sometimes forget that I’m on the internet and even adults descend into child like tantrums about things they don’t like. Anonymity is a hell of a tool for a very immature world. People call it sexualized because it has a woman’s torso, if it were up to the internet a great many pieces of actual art would not exist today for the same reason this one is bad or wrong. It’s not in great taste and no one could argue that it is, but it’s not the travesty that people have made it out to be.

          • Premium User Badge Morangie says:

            I have a tendency to disagree with the band wagon because it’s only in disagreement that any meaning discussion is had.

            You disagree with things because a majority of other people agree with them? Thats just silly, but I’m sure you disagree.

          • Eddy9000 says:

            @Baresack

            That’s the thing isn’t it; my post is entirely consistent with the rest of the comments thread, many of whom have expressed their belief that the statuette is not offensive, except you didn’t call them irrelevant and childish did you, because they agree with your opinion. And expressing your disagreement about something simply isn’t childish is it, it’s normal and how all change is made. You disagree with me and that’s fine, but attacking the credibility of someone who you know only from a written comment comes across as really cheap. If you want to say why you think the statuette isn’t offensive in response to what I’ve written then please go ahead, but if you’re going to say that expressing an opinion in a web forum is egotistical, posing a counter-argument to views expressed previously in a thread is irrelevant and that disagreeing passionately with something is childish then you might as well not bother.

    • vondas says:

      Well, clearly it’s offensive if anyone on Earth is offended by it. I do not know how else you could define “offensive” in a measurable way.

      I personally am not offended by it because I can’t take it as seriously as you apparently do; not because I at all like or approve it. But being offended or not by something is a function of the thickness of one’s skin as well as any kind of ethical and aesthetic beliefs.

      As for publicity, surely you’re aware of the adage that there is no such thing as bad publicity. If I were into disembodied female torsos I would certainly find this article informative and interesting in a way the author never intended.

  34. tossrStu says:

    GOOD NEWS they’re withdrawing the statue BAD NEWS they’re swapping it for a horsemeat burger

    [ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED forced two memes to mate in an abominable parody of intercourse]

  35. Ricc says:

    Now if that Special Edition came with an actual steak instead, I would like that very much.

  36. tossrStu says:

    And you know what? Setting everything else aside, the fact is the publishers are basically saying “HEY GUYS you like tits RIGHT? And you like gore RIGHT? Well you are in LUCK because you can have your very own GORETITS EDITION of the game for only £65 more than the standard edition. We’ll even put the game in a shitty flimsy tin box and throw in some £3 DLC to sweeten the deal, because we know you’re the kind of gullible fucks who’ll LAP THAT SHIT UP”

    You’re being played for mugs, people, and if you can’t get angry about disembodied zombie boobs, at least get angry about THAT.

  37. Baresark says:

    Good for them. At least they are responding to it like mature people. My opinions about the internet communities drastic and uncalled for response aside, obviously placating to them is the most intelligent move. Let the babies have their bottle if it shuts them up.

  38. Beelzebud says:

    You’re acting like more of a whiner and special snowflake than anyone here.

  39. Beelzebud says:

    Hey fellow men: You don’t have to be a sexist asshole to prove your manhood. Acting like a frat-boy on speed doesn’t make you man.

  40. Eddy9000 says:

    You obviously don’t subscribe, so it’s a bit of an empty threat really.

    • zeroskill says:

      Oh, yes. Your personal insults make you look so much more mature.

      • Eddy9000 says:

        What? I was just saying he doesn’t subscribe. He’ll probably admit to it later.

    • gwathdring says:

      Personal insults make this place less pleasant. Please don’t to it. Trying to make a clever comeback doesn’t excuse personal insults, either. This isn’t D&D; a high charisma roll doesn’t give you a free pass.

      • F3ck says:

        No…but: I love the cries of WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN AND THE WOMEN? from a community who will most likely never know the love of either. was pretty fucking hilarious.

        • gwathdring says:

          You and I have very different senses of humor then. I’ve heard funny insults that made me chuckle in spite of myself. That didn’t come close.

      • Cuddlefish says:

        Assuming Charisma as an attribute is assumed to include ‘how to get POSITIVE reactions from people’ and ‘how not to come of as an ass’ it seems like that tack is usually a failed Charisma roll, rather than a high one.

        • gwathdring says:

          Not exactly. It does work the way I was thinking of it, but it’s a shitty metaphor and a shitty comment on my part, for that matter, so it doesn’t matter much.

    • gwathdring says:

      Please cut the crap. Take the insults outside. It’s really unpleasant.

      Sort of like calling people pretentious, complaining about willy-waving egotism in an opinionated discussion cuts both ways and comes out as a wash. Ad hominem is considered a fallacy in debate for a reason. You don’t know people’s motivations for posting and you know as well as I that some folks here have families.

      If you’re trolling or exceedingly unreasonable … carry on making this place unpleasant. I figured I’d at least try asking nicely.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      Told you!

    • The white guar says:

      You are such a bleak person.

  41. derella says:

    I can’t wait to see what their next game, Rapey Murder Party will have in it’s collector’s edition! Whatever it is, no one will be allowed to be offended by it… cause it’ll fit the theme of a Rapey Murder Party. And that makes it ok.

    • Cuddlefish says:

      I cannot stand how much this excuse is used. The settings and characters that ‘justify’ these things didn’t spring from a vacuum! They were CREATED by the same individuals who then created whatever the objectionable content being excused is. Their faults are completely fair game.

  42. kament says:

    What next? Will “gaming community” become aflame all over the Internet and demand to ban violent games etc et?

    When I saw the stupid statuette, I cringed, I really did. But it didn’t occur to me for one moment to become aflame. They like their gore, who am I to argue? Then I found out it was “misogynistic” for some utterly unexplained reason. Would someone please care to explain what exactly is misoginistic about this stupid thing?

    Because all I saw was a distasteful statuette of a mutilated person. How on Earth did misogyny get involved? Isn’t that just a sophisticated form of, well, misogyny, really?

    • Eddy9000 says:

      Nobody’s demanding a ban on the statuette, they are expressing how offensive they find it and Deep Silver have voluntarily withdrawn it. It’s called customer demand, if everyone loved it they would have gone ahead. Don’t try to strawman by saying that disagreement equals a call for censorship, it doesn’t.

      • TCM says:

        Yeah, that’s the thing.

        This was made without the slightest hint of irony or self-awareness. The marketing team genuinely thought this was what ‘gamers’ wanted. When proven wrong by the enormous backlash, it is better for them to retreat, circle the wagons, and rethink their marketing plan.

        Nobody is saying BAN THIS SICK FILTH, they are saying we should be above this standard by now.

        • derella says:

          Thank you!

        • Synesthesia says:

          This. It’s the reason why violence in movies can be done right, and can be done wrong. Think of; i dont know, reservoir dogs, and this torture apology movie americans did a few months ago. There’s a difference in context, intent. Believe it or not, even if it’s an object, something is being said. Go figure!

      • kament says:

        Excuse me, but there’s no strawman here. What exactly was this disagreement expressed for? Or did someone really expect weirdos step in and say how much they like their tits and gore (I just read your comment above, but I’ll get to that)?

        Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying you can’t express your opinion, which would be preposterous of me. I’m just trying to figure out where this is going. And all I see is the same rhetoric those who combat violence in games use. Because there is, like, no difference whatsoever between violence in games and misogyny in games. There are lots of ugly things in games.

        Now, I’ve read your piece on objectification—thanks, by the way—and I think I see your point. I see how it’s bad to objectify a person based on gender, race etc. What I don’t see is how do you objectify an object. Because we’re not talking about real person here (thus references to real demographics and appearances ring hollow, sorry). Which brings up more questions.

        Is it ok to objectify women in-game by beating female zombies to a pulp?

        If it is, what exactly is the problem with the statuette, then?

        If it’s not, what’s the difference between this and “violence in games”?

        • Eddy9000 says:

          This is what I disagreed with:
          “What next? Will “gaming community” become aflame all over the Internet and demand to ban violent games etc et?”

          You introduced the idea of calling for a ban into a discussion where nobody was doing that, it’s technically strawmanning because you’re saying that someone is saying something they are not and then disagreeing with that instead of what was said. You probably didn’t do it deliberately and I’m sorry if my post came across as harsh or attacking.

          Objectification is used as a term for reducing a person to the status of an object rather than a person, it doesn’t require making a physical object of them for example saying you wont date a woman because she has ‘crap tits’. We’re arguing that the statuette represents an objectification because it reduces a woman to a sexualised pair of breasts, this is also done through violent dismemberment which is doubly concerning. That the objectification is done through the literal creation of an object presented as something to desire by a company looking to make profit adds to the poignancy .

          • vondas says:

            Not arguing the rhetorical parts of your arguments earlier, but can you tell me why you consider it concerning? This isn’t some new and sinister development.

          • kament says:

            Well, I see now it really was a fallacy on my part to imply that the next move would be bannig offensive content. Wasn’t deliberate, I just overreacted, I guess.

            Thank you.

          • 00000 says:

            “Objectification is used as a term for reducing a person to the status of an object rather than a person.”

            But it’s not a person, it’s an object without any didactic purpose, and should be treated as such.

            Honestly, I have a hard time grasping the controversy. Someone sculpted a pair of boobs. So what? It doesn’t have any intrinsic meaning whatsoever, so how can it be misogynous-in-itself?

            Am I the only postmodernist in this thread? Can’t a bust not simply be just a bust? Associations we form around imagery is highly subjective. It’s not the formal cause of the object! This is not a matter of Medieval aesthetics and journalist shouldn’t be playing the moral authority of beauty and virtue.

            The only thing Deep Silver can be accused of, is a poor understanding of semiotics.

  43. hypercrisis says:

    It’s not my cup of tea, but perverted statues like that aren’t exactly hard to come by. It certainly reveals the game as immature and perverse, but that should have been obvious from the first game no? Utterly tasteless and offensive for mass marketing, but it certainly caters to its niche.

    • gritz says:

      The problem is that Deep Silver apparently considers us that niche. It was incumbent on us to let them know that we are not.

  44. SonicTitan says:

    Your legs

    Look so sexy out of context

  45. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Eh. Seems like a planned response in case an uproar happened. Nothing will come of this, I assume. Well, unless the game fails to sell, perhaps.

  46. vondas says:

    “As is often the case with these stories, you’re left bemused as to how it took a press/public reaction for the offensive potential to be acknowledged.”

    Maybe you are left bemused by it. Any given sample of people could take offense to all kinds of things, so it’s not really as predictable as you appear to think. I certainly wouldn’t have expected it to be viewed as offensive (to who? women? then would a man being dressed up in a similar way be really all that better?) rather than merely typically crass and tasteless, personally.

    I think they just don’t really care about such things, understandably enough given the aforementioned unpredictability. So they just take their chances and adjust accordingly if it does cause an outrage instead of being accepted as edgy and cool, as is clearly (and not wholly unjustly) their intent. It seems a fairly understandable position to me; maybe not the most responsible, but it’s not like they are politicians or something who you might legitimately hold to some high standards in that regard.

  47. Limey says:

    I don’t understand. There are books and movies with worse content than a bloody woman’s torso. Why do we get up in arms when it is a videogame?

    • Shooop says:

      The presentation of it.

      You buy the movie/game/book knowing it has stuff like this in it, but this was making that single thing the sole reason for buying it.

    • vondas says:

      My guess is that a few people here care about games as art a whole lot, and so start wishing that every game should be a piece of incredible, thoughtful, intelligent high art. They hold games to ridiculously high standards, in other words. But the thing is, if the history of any sort of other media is any indication, this kind of lowbrow games that falls far short of their ivory towers is not going to go away.

      • gritz says:

        Yes that is the problem here: unrealistically high standards. Brilliant.

    • Shadram says:

      You’re either being incredibly naive or wilfully ignorant here. We’re not even discussing showing images like this in a game. Showing a mutilated corpse in a film or game would be with the intent to shock, but would be in the context of the story being told.

      Here, they’re selling an image of a sexualised, mutilated woman, obviously aimed at teenage boys to display on their shelves, with no context whatsoever, because they can fap to her boobs and discuss how ‘cool’ it is with their friends. It’s sickening.

      (Edited a bit to properly get across the point I wanted to make)

      • vondas says:

        So it’s not sickening if there is a greater artistic context and if it is not in public view?

        Why are you so concerned about teenaged boys and whether or not they masturbate to this? It’s not like they can’t do that at home to those other, contextualised images of the same thing. Sorry, I’m possibly still not getting your point.

  48. F3ck says:

    I refuse to take any of this seriously…the lame torso nor the manufactured outrage…

    Where I’m from (the real world) we don’t faint every time we see a pair of tits (when did the EU get so fucking uptight?) we don’t rush to women’s defense at every tiny perceived threat…since they’re more than capable of handling their own (I know there’s a pack of men leading the charge here, ’cause most women wouldn’t give this silly shit the time of day)…and we certainly have learned to laugh when the makers of a game about hacking swimsuit-clad beach goers to chunks releases a less-than-tasteful promo…

    I know some people who would love it…I know others who’d hate it…but I don’t know anyone who’d think it was the epitome of woman-hating…

    …well, not irl.

    • vondas says:

      Moral outrage at indecent art shown by high society is not really a new invention either, to be fair.

    • Alice says:

      Well I’m also from the real world, and the other day I was catcalled while walking by a construction site, *again*. And later that day an older guy made a point of staring at my breasts while walking past me, even though I had so much clothes on that you literally couldn’t make out my tits underneath it all – but he looked me in the face and then lowered his gaze purposefully, to make a point that he was staring at the area of my body where my tits would be visible if I didn’t have so much clothes on.

      I have been reduced to a pair of tits so many times in my life that I can’t even begin to consider shit like this anymore without getting angry.

      *That* is the reason why men are leading the charge here – not the fact that men represent the majority of the gaming community and are invested in fighting for the quality of their community and the content they love, but the fact that they still have the patience to be outraged, whereas I just want to yell at everyone EAT SHIT AND DIE.

      Thanks to all the reasonable RPS commenters engaging in discussions and to Mr Walker for offering a measured critique of shit like this, I know that I would lose any credibility if I were to speak up, because I would just be angry.

      But, man, I am so fucking tired of it.

      • F3ck says:

        Look, I can appreciate your anger – both of the incidents you’ve described would easily incite me to some surely inappropriate reaction on behalf of any woman were I present – but men are mostly idiots…and they’re mostly idiots because they are people and people are mostly idiotic.

        I don’t know how many times a woman has commented on my shoe size and said “you know what that means” (I am a 15 – and either the exception to this ‘rule’ or proof it’s erroneous) so apparently it’s okay for a woman to wonder aloud about the size of my dork…but it’s just stupid, tacky people being themselves…

        Things like this “bust” are lame, but we also need thicker skins.

        …seems lately people are losing their minds every time any female shows any skin…sexual repression is the USA’s job, dammit.

        • Alice says:

          Men are not idiots because they are born idiots, but because culture encourages them to behave in idiotic ways like this, by propagating images that reduce women to nothing but tits and ass. It is not “lame”, it is a cultural problem that can and should be amended, instead of being ignored by growing “thicker skin”.

          • Merlkir says:

            Your tits and ass evolved to look the way they do for that exact purpose – to attract male attention and to make them excited about having sex with you. Boo fucking hoo, they actually do that. WHAT PIGS MEN ARE RIGHT?!

            I will look at a woman and enjoy the view of her tits, it’s not this fucking culture making me do it, it’s that I enjoy a nice pair of tits. If I’m not grabbing them, I’m not doing anything wrong. I still see the woman as a person, I might find her interesting for her ideas and I might have a nice chat with her. If not, there’s always tits.

          • Alice says:

            I’m sorry if what I said made you feel like I was trying to make men feel guilty for enjoying a pair of tits, that was not my intention. I am bisexual and I enjoy a nice pair of tits as well, we have that in common. What I am opposed to is purposefully reducing a woman to nothing but her tits, and then going out of your way (by catcalling, for example, or pointedly staring) to *show* her where her place in the world is (wank material and nothing more).

          • Synesthesia says:

            Your tits and ass evolved to look the way they do for that exact purpose – to attract male attention and to make them excited about having sex with you. Boo fucking hoo, they actually do that. WHAT PIGS MEN ARE RIGHT?!

            No. Just no. We have fetishized them, and i enjoy them too, but what you have just sais is stupid and you should feel bad. Evolving tits and asses?What! Will they become sentient and whisper to me as i walk past them to make me look during the next 5000 years?

            For fucks sake guys.

          • Guvornator says:

            Cheer up, Alice http://youtu.be/VOOcJobuZTc (I’m not taking sides on this, it’s just an opportunity to post this…)

          • Tasloi says:

            I take more offense to this statement than the statue and that’s putting it politely.

          • Premium User Badge Morangie says:

            @Merlkir

            Wow.

          • Merlkir says:

            @Alice: right. Not everything every time is as it seems. I’ve been shouted at by a woman for “staring at her tits” on a tram, because my eyes pointed in that general direction for a while. In reality I was trying not to think about being surrounded by annoying people, staring blankly into space. Ogling happens. It’s unpleasant, it’s offensive, sure. Many people offend us these days. I don’t think it’s necessary to be outraged, because someone is not interested in you as a person, while being aroused by your body. It’s not nice of him/her, but it’s not illegal, nor is it hurting you. If it’s at work, If they make advances after you tell them to stick it up their arse, if they grab stuff, that’s not ok. But it’s not other people’s job to make you feel comfortable at all times. It’s good manners, sure, but not everyone cares about those.

            @Synesthesia: I’ll give you this, there are quite a few explanations for the way breasts and buttocks evolved. The one we were taught at school is Morris’. Just google a bit, if you’re not a creationist of course.
            http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/2460501?uid=3737856&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21101669671347

            @Morangie: You’re welcome: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=80DtQD5BQ_A

      • Milky1985 says:

        I’m sorry you are treated that way by guys who stare, us guys occasionally have to deal with the girls who stare, make comments, putt heir hands where they shouldn’t be etc.

        Well most guys do , as a short fact ugly person i rarely get that sort of treatment but i do see it happening to others.

        There are extremes on both sides, but a quote from a (female) housemate of mine “girls are just as shallow as guys, they just don’t tend to vocalize it”.

        • Alice says:

          I have been treated much worse by men who did not stop at just staring. Both men and women can be offensive and harrassing, but that is not a reason to ignore that kind of behaviour. I cannot think of any reason why ignoring it would be better…

          • Milky1985 says:

            I had to re-read my comment again just now as i was a bit confused. As i cannot pinpoint anywhere in my comment where i said anything about ignoring the behavior, i don’t believe i said this any way shape or form. Not sure where you got that from at all.

            I actually said that BOTH guys and girls have this sort of behavior happen to them, and said that i was sorry you were treated that way as its bad that EITHER sex is treated that way by the outliers of our society.

            Sorry if that’s not the attitude you would like people to take about what happens to you on a day to day basis, but that’s my thoughts on it. Note my thoughts are ITS BAD, and never did i say don’t do anything about it, i would say do, stand up if people are staring and tell them to stop fucking staring, they go further and your in public, either fight back or shout for help. No-one should have there personal space invaded if they don’t want it to be.

            If you are actually having problems there has to be some sort of support group or web site with similar people who have similar issues who can help, there may be some people here but as its a gaming site the demographic makes it less likely (although here will be a bit better than somewhere like IGN), i don’t think its really the place to talk about issues you are having due to the site but i hope you find a group of people with friends that don’t do that sort of thing and i apologize on behalf of my gender as some of us can be shits.

          • Alice says:

            You don’t need to apologize for the fact that some men behave in obnoxious way. It’s not like I believe all men are to blame for the fact that a certain widespread negative culture exists. But I do think we all need to fight it.

            You said something along the lines of “well it happens to men, too”, which I understood as being dismissive in the sense of “well, it happens to everyone, what can you do about it” or “it happens to anyone, it’s not such a big deal”, hence my reply.

  49. Shooop says:

    Of all the publicity stunts people have pulled for games, this is the worst one I’ve seen to date. That even includes the brass knuckles in the Mafia 2 promotions.

    And for anyone who doesn’t get it, it’s not the content it’s the presentation. Yes we know zombie games/movies feature people being viciously mutilated. No one’s complaining about that. But when that’s literally the only selling point of the game/movie we call it “exploitation”. It’s even an entire sub-genre of film – look it up at your own discretion.

    Most of all, this was immature and downright stupid. It offended my intelligence more than anything.

    • vondas says:

      Yes! And it is also a sub-genre of games, as we see here. I think that speaks to games evolving as a popular media, though, just like movies before them. You and I may not like this particular side-effect of it, but that is all it seems to mean, to me.

  50. Alberte25 says:

    This may be hot. TKS