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  1. #1
    Lesser Hivemind Node icupnimpn2's Avatar
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    "Mature" Language in games... does it enhance the experience *EXPLICIT*

    Was playing the beta for an upcoming RPG today. I like the setting, the design. Looks to be fun.

    Then I talk to the first character I meet. He says "Ex-fucking-zactly" after a few other "fucks" thrown out.

    In this game and in most others I've played that are peppered with supposedly mature language, "fuck" seems disproportionately used and pretty much breaks the experience.

    I reached a point in my life where I deliberately turned to puritan values, so others may not hold my distaste. But I wonder, is it just me that's turned off?

    When I was 3 years old, I thought the word "poo" was like the greatest thing on earth. When I heard it I laughed. When I said it I felt like the height of wit. When I was a teenager, I think saying "fuck" a lot made me feel like an adult. When I was an adult, people who said it a lot seemed like teenagers to me.

    There's a trend in PG-13 movies, especially comedies, to include "fuck" at least one time. Usually it's meant to be shockingly funny, like a wink. We're playing with the rules. The rest of the movie doesn't have that word, but one joke will. It won't be used again since that would break the PG-13 rating. But the feeling to me is that the films' creators are winking at the audience, saying, "we'd like to use this word a whole bunch of times, and we know you realllllly like it and want to hear it, so we're doing the best we can for you. Here, have one, enjoy!"

    Is that what's happening in games? Is there any real reason to plop the word "fuck" down in the word "exactly?" I know it's a fantasy setting, but do people do that - straight faced - in real life without sounding like total tools? If not, if the dialogue isn't believable, then why do it?

    My suspicion is that it is some sort of market testing gone awry. The word "fuck" must test well. Games ought to have a 13% percentage of "fuck" in them to please male audiences from the age of 14 to 23.

    So tell me true, forum-crawlers. Do you prefer, actually prefer "mature" language of this sort, or do you just put up with it?

  2. #2
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    I think it can be a good way to establish a character or a setting, but it's often massively overused.

  3. #3
    Lesser Hivemind Node icupnimpn2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by R-F View Post
    I think it can be a good way to establish a character or a setting, but it's often massively overused.
    Establish a setting.... *Narrator voice* "In a worrrrld where people say 'fuck'..."

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    Quote Originally Posted by icupnimpn2 View Post
    Establish a setting.... *Narrator voice* "In a worrrrld where people say 'fuck'..."
    More like to establish it as grim or darker than the usual idealistic settings. In a kid's novel, characters will often say substitute swearwords "frak" etc, and the same in lighter novels for the more mature folk. In grimdark novels, it'll be about how they're going to "fuck you in your dirty fucking arse" or something similar as a threat compared to "pulverize you" or "frak you up so bad your mother won't recognise you".

    As others have said, though, a lot of people I know just swear casually. Maybe it's an American thing against swearing?

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by R-F View Post
    As others have said, though, a lot of people I know just swear casually. Maybe it's an American thing against swearing?
    I'm Australian where we've got a very relaxed opinion of swearing (outside the professional setting at least), and while I won't cringe at swearing I don't think that swearing inherently makes a better game. Actually no, some of the swearing in gaming does make me cringe, because it's so goddamn forced and out of place. Most of the time actually I find it makes the dialogue worse, like they've got some sort of quota and have to stick "fuck" or "shit" every 4 or 5 words to get the game finished. If the game is supposed to be a ridiculous piss-take like Bulletstorm I'm fine with it, but otherwise it feels out of place and pointless. LA Noire mentioned up above is a good example of appropriate use.

    I'd argue that generous use of explicit language doesn't make a game more mature. If anything it makes it sound like a bunch of teenagers at a shopping centre. And as MD said, when it's poorly done, it makes the whole dialogue inherently worse. Swearing can't be forced, or it sounds unnatural.

  6. #6
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Words can't be forced, or it sounds unnatural.
    Fixed your post for you. I mean, c'mon, it ain't just swearing.
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  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus DaftPunk's Avatar
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    I hate vulgar use of language in games,i mean use it when its appropriate,not every other sentence.. I mean who the heck speak like that in real life o.O

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Grizzly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaftPunk View Post
    I hate vulgar use of language in games,i mean use it when its appropriate,not every other sentence.. I mean who the heck speak like that in real life o.O
    US marines. Then again, they are basically trained to put themselves into situations where that sorta language is appropiate...

    I don't like it in competitive games though. It feels weird in BF3 to complain about people calling each other "cocksucker" on chat when one of the random shouts is "Those cocksuckers are fucking me up!"

  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaftPunk View Post
    I hate vulgar use of language in games,i mean use it when its appropriate,not every other sentence.. I mean who the heck speak like that in real life o.O
    Me and everybody I know.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vandelay View Post
    as it just ruins the fun for those of us who want to execute the perfect "fuck".
    We all want to execute the perfect fuck. Most of us know, however, that it doesn't happen unless you practice at it.

    u c wut i did thar
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  10. #10
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bobtree's Avatar
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    It's fine, except when it's terribly juvenile, as in BF3. Then it's just stupid.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus The JG Man's Avatar
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    I think it works in some scenarios. For example, House of the Dead: Overkill highlights that it can be marvellous. If a fuck is written well, it will work. If it's just done because because then yeah, it sucks.
    Powered by Steam. And biscuits. I'm also a twit and dabble in creative writing.

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Squiz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The JG Man View Post
    I think it works in some scenarios. For example, House of the Dead: Overkill highlights that it can be marvellous. If a fuck is written well, it will work. If it's just done because because then yeah, it sucks.
    Which one was the marvellous part?

  13. #13
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus vinraith's Avatar
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    It's all in how it's used. Honestly, if you're in a warzone, people are being shot to pieces all around you, and you're not cursing I have to wonder what's wrong with you. At the same time, it can certainly be overused and excessive. At it's best it's a way to establish character, situation, and atmosphere. At its worst it sounds like a 10 year old that just learned those words wrote the script.

  14. #14
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bhazor's Avatar
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    Swearing has its place.



    Though it usually doesn't make things more mature.
    Last edited by Bhazor; 25-02-2012 at 05:48 PM.

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus SirKicksalot's Avatar
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    Is it the Risen 2 beta?

    I've been playing The Darkness 2 these days and there's one scene where the use of harsh language hit me like a ton of bricks. A great moment and one of the best uses of swearwords in games. It made me boil with anger and hate - and the payoff was really good later in the game.

  16. #16
    Lesser Hivemind Node icupnimpn2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirKicksalot View Post
    Is it the Risen 2 beta?
    I am under an NDA that I didn't bother to read, so to be safe I will neither confirm nor deny.

    As far as establishing a character goes, I'll go back to the bit of dialogue I mentioned at the top of the thread. The character I was talking to was a thief in prison. So maybe he would use some salty language. Ok, fair. The whole interaction is managed without any, ex-fucking-cept the one bit that felt tacked on that I used as an ex-fucking-ample.

    There's maybe a natural time and place to swear about something. I will cuss in real life if I am really angry. And if there's a game that has mayhem, violence, and irreverence as its main conceit, well, I can understand if the language is over-the-top. Bulletstorm, Duke Nukem, etc. Sure.

    It's in what are supposed to be more immersive, realistic games that I don't expect or want that kind of dialogue. I want the games, not that dialogue.

  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Althea's Avatar
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    Bulletstorm is the best example of constructive use of excessive mature language.


  18. #18
    Lesser Hivemind Node DigitalSignalX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Althea View Post
    Bulletstorm is the best example of constructive use of excessive mature language.
    Every so often it's good to be reminded why I didn't play Bulletstorm.
    All times I have enjoyed greatly, have suffered greatly, both with those that loved me, and alone.

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Althea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DigitalSignalX View Post
    Every so often it's good to be reminded why I didn't play Bulletstorm.
    I don't tend to like lots of swearing.

    I absolutely loved Bulletstorm.


  20. #20
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kadayi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DigitalSignalX View Post
    Every so often it's good to be reminded why I didn't play Bulletstorm.
    More fool you, it's surprisingly fun.

    As regards the topic (Bulletstorm aside), if everyone is swearing all the time it kind of robs foul language of its potency a bit, which can be a useful tool in certain situations. In LA Noire (albeit is a period drama) when Phelps drops the F-Bomb in the middle of an interrogation early on it really intensifies the moment. I think that's a good approach tbh.
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