The Last Night gets new trailer and the creator apologises for old tweets

The Last Night [official site] was revealed at Microsoft’s conference yesterday. It looked great, but that first trailer was focused on showing how the game’s world looked more than how it played. Now there’s a second “gameplay” trailer of sorts which… Mostly focuses on how the world looks, rather than how it plays. It is longer however, and it does give a better sense of how you move through the game’s stunning pixel art cyberpunk spaces. You can watch it below.

Perhaps more importantly though, the game’s appearance at the PC Gaming Show gave creative director Tim Soret the chance to address the anger attracted by some of his old tweets.

This is B-roll more than an actual reflection of playing the game and it leaves plenty left unanswered about what you do in those spaces, what control you have over the character, and a lot more. It’s a shame that they didn’t take the opportunity to show the game’s story, for example, which is in part powered by the Ink engine developed by 80 Days’ developers.

It’s particularly a shame they didn’t show the story more in light of concerns raised last night. I wrote this all up earlier today if you want all the background, but to briefly recap: three years ago Tim Soret tweeted comments which were pro-GamerGate, anti-feminist, and which suggested that The Last Night reflected these worldviews. Those tweets resurfaced naturally after The Last Night trailer was first aired. During the PC Gaming Show however, Soret addressed them directly: “I am embarrassed by some tweets I made in the past. I want to apologize for those. They do not in any way represent who I am today, or what The Last Night is about.” Then host Day9 then quickly moved things along.

It’s anyone’s guess whether that apology is sincere or whether it’s driven by a need to end the growing controversy now that his game is growing in notoriety. I’m going to choose to believe the former, however: people can change and people need to be allowed to be wrong and then change.

Whether that apology is enough to make you want to buy the game one day is a different matter entirely. I’ll continue to reserve judgement until we’ve seen much more of it and had the chance to try it out.

105 Comments

  1. OddJuniper says:

    This “apology” claiming the tweets were old and not representative of his beliefs anymore might be more believable if the game’s Steam description didn’t make it clear that the game is grounded in the same far right-wing ideology as the “outdated” tweets. That description also undercuts all the “judge the game on its merits” stuff I’m seeing from this dude’s apologists.

    • Clavus says:

      Are we reading the same Steam page? Seems like a normal sci-fi background for a game to me.

      • Author X says:

        Saying that eliminating poverty/work with universal income will make humans lazy and without identity is pretty right-wing (and contrary to most anti-corporate “standard” cyberpunk).

        • quotidian says:

          It’s also the plot of Wall-E, which is not exactly a rightwing propaganda piece.

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            Nauallis says:

            Good old boy Wall-E, fighting the good fight every day. That’s a man with a purpose, right there. Bully for you, robot!

            Too bad he got brainwashed by that filthy liberal cockroach, living off of his sweat, crashing on his couch, and stealing from the gubmint.

        • OddJuniper says:

          Exactly. He made a “cyberpunk” game in which the capitalist megacorps are the good guys. A world in which working yourself to death for the corporation is what gives life meaning. A world in which our white male protagonist takes a brave stand against lazy brown people and women and their government handouts.

          Aesthetically it might be cyberpunk, but ideologically it’s the exact opposite. This game is blatant fascist propaganda. And in a world where fascism is resurgent, it’s dangerous to dismiss this as just a game.

          • USER47 says:

            Yeah, let’s make every game about brave revolutionary with Che Guevara on his t-shirt, fighting evil corporations. Because there certainly isn’t enough games or movies like that.

            Telling any other stories is dangerous fascist propaganda. Let’s ban it!

          • Mousetrap says:

            ‘fascist propaganda’ – ‘far right-wing ideology’ – you must have read a completely different description than the rest of us.

            Your extreme views are showing.

          • Jerkzilla says:

            To be honest, I’m not getting any of this stuff about being pro mega corps and white people from the game’s steam page. It’s also not like issues with a post-scarcity society are difficult to imagine either, in addition to Wall-E which quotidian mentioned above, you can probably count aspects of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World in there.

          • wonboodoo says:

            Dude, hyperbole much? Nowhere in the description does it mention a corporation let alone the fascism you seem to be reaching for. Reading the Steam description it seems to be about individual empowerment, not working for any dictator or boss.

          • OddJuniper says:

            For those of you confused about my references to the Steam description- I just double-checked and they appear to have rewritten the Steam description sometime today.

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            john_silence says:

            On the other hand this is so cyberpunk it’s meta. You, the player, living the virtual life of a dude of the future, in a neon-night world underpinned by the very principles that make oppressors crush the oppressed.

            It’s sheer dystopia down to the roots. I can imagine people playing it as literal cyberpunks, sitting at a point before the narrative directs you into a dubious choice and going “nope! No compromise. No future.”

            This man in his white tee and blue jeans, walking lonely against a throng of people of all colours, genders and demeanours, sitting in a position of obvious inferiority before what I take to be a Black lady at 1:55 in the video above, is like a lyrical embodiment of that cliché of the oppressed white male GG was founded upon.

            Yet these two recent trailers evoke a dreamy, depressive sense of frailty and isolation that paint to me the picture of a creator who is much more than a horrible human being. It is also one of the most striking pieces of cyberpunk world-building I have ever witnessed, so there’s that.

        • wonboodoo says:

          You seem to be conflating conservative capitalist beliefs with his anti-feminist speech. You can believe in one without the other. Provided the game doesn’t contain the the sexist GamerGate hatred it might be an interesting, different take on a cyberpunk story.

          • pepperfez says:

            But since the creator seems to be pretty fond of GoatGroping anti-feminism, I don’t hold out much hope for his game to escape it.

        • TheCrimsonPumba says:

          It’s hard to see how that makes someone right wing, let alone their creation right-wing propaganda.

          I have to say, it’s very odd that you seem to be judging a game based on its stance towards an economic policy of the future.

        • Unclepauly says:

          I don’t know much about right/left wing crap, but that sounds more like common sense.

          • LexW1 says:

            Pauly, I say this with love because I enjoy you’re posts, but that’s because you’re basically very solidly right-wing.

            I don’t know if you know that.

    • Tafdolphin says:

      Completely agree. His initial reaction after the reveal at the MS conference doesn’t show any contrition at all. The statement from the publishes, Raw Story, is even worse and only calls his horrible comments “naive.” A quick “soz” is not enough here.

      Links to the statements:
      link to twitlonger.com

      link to twitter.com

      • Jerkzilla says:

        Horrible comments? I think this is overreacting a little. Did he ever actually argue for anything other than equal rights for everyone and good journalistic practices?

        • USER47 says:

          It seems he didn’t, but nowadays this is enough for people to get offended, and either seek out their safe places or get the pitchforks and prepare some good old online lynch.

        • Tafdolphin says:

          Yep, he did. Collection of his tweets here:

          http://grcade.co.uk/t:the-last-night—mac-pc-xbox—2018?p=4150615#p4150615

          Scroll down for another post with more content

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            MajorLag says:

            The only thing in there that strikes me as potentially indicative of a sexist is the one about growing babies in artificial wombs. I don’t know why anyone would consider that extreme if it was an option.

            Otherwise it seems like he mostly is just interested in exploring a conceptual future where echo-chambers and internet mobs are the ones doing the oppressing, and the oppressors are extremist pseudo-progressives instead of the traditional fascists.

            Franky, it actually sounds like a pretty interesting take on the genre.

          • LexW1 says:

            MajorLag, you understand what you’ve written there is the classic GamerGate/4Chan/Alt-Right position, right? That they, largely wealthy young white men, are the real victims, because whenever they express nasty racist, sexist, or generally hateful views, people are down on them.

            If you can’t see how what you’ve written is expressing their present-day political view, well, I guess you’re going to be really shocked when you find out that Bioshock loosely explores Ayn Rand’s Objectivist beliefs, and Andrew Ryan is in fact a play on Ayn Rand!

        • theRealComptroller says:

          I see you are still pretending that GG was about ethical journalism and not what it actually was, which was attacking women in gaming.

    • thenevernow says:

      Clavus preceded me, but the Steam description looks like standard cyberpunk stuff now. Could you sum up what you read there?

      • Tafdolphin says:

        The issue is summed up very eloquently here:

        link to twitter.com

        tl;dr Cyberpunk is generally about the little guy fighting against the big bad corps and/or oppressors (it’s the codifying trope of the genre) . This story is about everyone having everything they’ve ever wanted and why this is a Very Bad Thing. At best it’s an uninformed world view, at worst it’s defensive of far-right ideals. Bear in mind too the guy has specifically said it is set in a world where “feminism won.”

      • JarinArenos says:

        Basically “you are defined by the work you do, and in absence of wage slaving, life is pointless” capitalism screed. I’ll reserve judgement like others are, but the framework is definately there.

        • April March says:

          “We lived in the desert, and so we worshipped thirst.”

    • reiniat says:

      He does not need to apologize for having a different opinion, nor making a game about it, it does not matter that you do not agree with his point of view (I disagree too, but the game is not even out yet, so who knows at this point). Its a free world, and he has the right for it.
      Nothing that I have seen from him could be remotely labeled as hate speech or anything that would make him genuinely need to apologize.

      • April March says:

        He has as much right to hold that opinion as I and many others have to say that we find his opinion to be distasteful. If he chose to apologize, sincerely or not, because he felt his opinions would harm the sales of his game, then it’s his choice to do so. The right to one’s opinion does not equal everyone else’s duty to stay silent and nod in agreement.

      • LexW1 says:

        Yet he feels that he does need to apologise.

        So we have an interesting situation here:

        Either he is wrong to apologise, as you suggest, and thus a spineless weakling, lacking true conviction or bravery, or he believes is right to apologise, and thinks he was being an idiot, in which, he disagrees with you, and you are trying to tell him now to think.

  2. Saarlaender39 says:

    What’s with his right hand?
    Is there a reason, why he keeps it in his pocket for the first half of the trailer?
    I find that somewhat irritating.

  3. USER47 says:

    Oh my god! He dared to say such a blasphemous things as “I’m against feminism, because it’s getting more and more skewed. I am for egalitariasm. I don’t care, boy, girl, alien.”

    Let’s stone him and make sure he will have to humbly apologize for such an offensive statement every time he appears in public for next 20 years. And then stone him anyway!

    • Mousetrap says:

      Haha, this. Glad there is some sanity here out there.

    • Defenestrate_My_Style says:

      Except feminism isn’t about making women superior over men, it’s about egalitarianism

      • ChefSquid says:

        Originally, yes, but not the abomination that modern feminism has become.

        • Synesthesia says:

          Hey look, somebody’s asshole learned to type internet comments.

          • GeminiathXL says:

            I disagree with your statements, but since I can’t back it up with arguments, I’lle just call you an asshole.

          • Farnbeak says:

            Thank you for your incredible contribution. Do read the commenting rules next time.

        • April March says:

          That abomination that demands women actually have equal rights instead of just pretending like they do.

          • Unclepauly says:

            I used to be on board with feminism in the past. This new version of it is just a spiteful hateful thing. There are still a few good feminists out there but the loud ignorants are drowning them out. It’s a shitshow really.

          • GeoX says:

            Jesus. Seriously, how do people like you GET that way?

          • April March says:

            Jesus. Seriously, how do people like you GET that way?

            Just seeing people say that “modern feminism has gone crazy” when a study showed that in Sweden, widely known as one of the countries with the best working conditions for women, they actually earn the equivalent of one hour less than men for the same work. I mean, how else do you respond to that?

        • gwathdring says:

          Feminism is above all a complex system of persons and organizations across history seeking rights for women. Clearly you don’t think that makes it an abomination, because you claimed it’s abomination-ness is something that developed over time.

          Here’s where we hit a rough patch. Feminism has always been criticized as an abomination. As the work of the devil. As hysteria and madness. Largely because the people benefiting from restricting women’s rights aren’t fond of changing their lives.

          With feminist movements more widespread, diverse and complex than ever, what makes you think that claim is suddenly more honest today then it was when the term ‘feminist’ was newer and its umbrella politics was less diverse? Are you not the least bit suspicious about this rhetorical structure you’re aligning yourself with?

          Systemic sexism is not ambiguous; the existence of inequity in our legal structure and our systems of political representation are not ambiguous. Inequity in terms of legal rights and legal justice are not ambiguous. So why does feminism–an incredibly generic term referring to a wide array of sub-movements seeking rights for women–need caveats to avoid being called something so extreme as an abomination?

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      Nauallis says:

      Okay, but only if the second stoning is free. I’m not putting up with paid DLC teasers the same day a game is announced.

    • OddJuniper says:

      Nazis are killing people. Not in videogames, in real life. Maybe you missed the last few years, but the Gamergate/MRA dudes slipped right on into the “alt-right”, and are full on Nazis today. And they are out here killing real people, in real life.

      These aren’t simply offensive statements, his game is a propaganda effort.

      • Mousetrap says:

        You need help bud.

        • April March says:

          Nope, that’s pretty much a factual statement. Not all Gamergates/MRA’s went full Nazi, and it’s not like they’re the ones that invented the far right, but that’s a pretty strong line there. I mean, it’s not like we could have avoided neonazis in the White House by just tweeting a few more feminist hashtags, but it’s definitively all part of the same zeitgeist.

      • USER47 says:

        To be honest, with ridiculous posts like these you are just making clearer that there may be something on the views of guys like Soret.

        • Tafdolphin says:

          It’s a hyperbolic but it’s grounded in truth; there are documented links between the alt right and gamergate

          link to theguardian.com

        • OddJuniper says:

          Like I said, this game is a propaganda effort on his part. He’s recruiting people like you.

          • Jaunty says:

            Honestly based on this comment thread it seems more like people like you are recruiting him.

            Someone, misguided or no, explicitly states they are for egalitarianism and is concerned that a mainstream movement that is meant to move towards that ideologically has been losing focus. The response, instead of trying to engage/explain how those fears could be unfounded, has been to “other” and attack them.

          • April March says:

            The thing is, people who say that are people who don’t really want women to have as many rights as men. What I mean is that, at best, they do want it in principle, but shy back as soon as it affects them, personally; at worst they know being against equal rights is a bad thing and frame it as something different so they can defend it freely.

            Plus, it’s not like feminists need to accept every one who says that on their word and engage them to change their mind. Don’t throw that burden on people who are already worse off.

          • Jaunty says:

            April I completely get where you’re coming from, and of course there are people who hold genuinely reprehensible ideologies and are trying to cloak them with a facade of legitimacy, but there are two points I take issue with:

            I believe it’s unrealistic and unhealthy to come at every person who says they’re for X but are skeptical of group Y’s methods of attaining X with the base assumption that they’re actually double agents who are actively seeking to undermine Y and even X altogether.

            I don’t believe that those two tweets from a young independent developer early in his career, a position which anyone could see would make someone especially sensitive to the alluring conspiracy theory of press-coverage collusion, are enough for me to just damn him out of hand as an enemy of women and a tool of the entitled class.

            I would unequivocally call myself a feminist. I don’t think a willingness to engage any person who self identifies as believing in the fundamental equality of all people constitutes a burden. I do think that the quality of public discourse is a burden, but it’s one we all share.

          • gwathdring says:

            @jaunty, I share your general approach to the matter, but the data I’m working off of leaves me very cold to Sorret’s apologies and assurances.

            I don’t even think it’s inherently regressive to examine a cyberpunk in which the traditional production and consumption economy is fully automated, removing human labor without changing the rest of the structure. It is not only right-wing thinkers who have proposed that the texture of life comes from effort, challenge, or some degree of contrasting emotional struggle, and since no society is perfect it’s entirely plausible to imagine a capitalist wellfare state that leaves people adrift and still allows people to fall through the cracks. But even skipping the knee-jerk “He political policies we support are bad” stage of things, I’m still seeing cracks in the things his world seems to focus on from things he has written about the game as well as less directly from things he has written outside of the game.

            I haven’t been given a reason to believe his cyberpunk will explore these issues in a way that is interesting to me given that his statements about some of it’s technological and social conceits–from basic income to artificial wombs–displays a rather superficial regressive mindset. I don’t know Tim Sorret; all I have is what they’ve actually said. And the trick with apologies is that as much as I might want to believe them, they are nothing more than a bit more data to toss onto the pile. Those apologies could be sincere and still come from a misguided place that puts forth the same sexist and regressive views. That the creator would not label their views in that way is entirely possible without a fundamental change in their approach to those issues. That not all of his questionable statements come from 2014 doesn’t really help his case, nor is three years all that long a time.

            I’ll believe it when I see it, when the product is out and its message is out.

          • April March says:

            I believe it’s unrealistic and unhealthy to come at every person who says they’re for X but are skeptical of group Y’s methods of attaining X with the base assumption that they’re actually double agents who are actively seeking to undermine Y and even X altogether.

            Unhealthy? Yes. Unrealistic? Sorry, no. It’s a fairly common tactic by people who are trying to undermine an ideology they don’t like but know they can’t disagree with without coming across as an arsehole.

            This doesn’t mean the dude in question is doing it. This doesn’t even mean that most people who act like this are doing it. It just means that, as sad as it may be, assuming good faith on people who act like that is as useful as replying to spam emails by saying “Sir, thank you for your contact, but I’m afraid that messages such as yours are often used in association with nefarious scams…”

    • Frank says:

      I mean, I don’t feel any urge to dehumanize him, but he not long ago certainly had some misogyny issues to work out. Not knowing him personally, I have no reason to believe that he has done that or that such changes in him have led to a more nuanced view of the world reflected in his game. That’d pretty much be my reason for staying away. Bigoted idiots don’t write very good stories, especially in sci-fi.

      And by misogynistic, I mean “I’ve seen extreme cases where feminists [yada yada] so they can keep working / drinking / smoking.” and “Most feminists only [yada yada].” Maybe since he wrote those, he’s actually come to know or empathize with the other side, but again, I don’t know him and IDGAF about the alleged progress of his personal journey.

    • Brisseline says:

      He actually said things like “Zoe Quinn was sexually harassing men while crying sexism” and “The real racists are the degenerates of your kind”. I mean, there’s every chance he has actually gotten over that shit, but don’t imply people’s misgivings are actually about his least offensive comments.

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        QueenKelly1929 says:

        Also, those tweets (originally in French) were from LAST YEAR, not three years ago. I don’t believe his apology at all.

  4. haldolium says:

    Okay I know this might a bit derailing the thread, but whats with the camera?

    At first I kind of liked the movement, something similar what Playdead did for Inside/Limbo to direct the camera subtle, but with a strong effect. This trailer however seems the camera is held by a drunken robot. Every scene is shaky :|

    Otherwise this looks great. They really nailed the mix of very rough pixel style with modern days tech possibilities.

  5. Stevostin says:

    Looks awesome but the zoom in zoom out makes me feel sick real quick.

  6. PikaBot says:

    One of the fastest Milkshake Ducks in recent memory. Screw his half-hearted apology, and screw his game.

  7. racccoon says:

    Really great work there. :)

  8. LogicalDash says:

    There’s no need to “choose to believe” anything, here’s Soret seven months ago being SICK of identity politics.

    He was responding to the Bill Nye episode about gender and sexual diversity by the way.

    • Unclepauly says:

      That Adriana person seems like a nice person though. TIMOTHY, I’M TALKING TO YOU TIMOTHY, WHAT ABOUT LAST YEAR TIMOTHY. Good god, where do people like that crawl out from?

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    JiminyJickers says:

    I love the look of this game. The art is amazing. Hopefully we will get an idea on how it actually plays soon.

  10. darkath says:

    1. Guy make poorly worded statements that do not specifically contain hatespeech but doubts on certain movements/ideologies 3 years ago.
    2. Guy finally get to showcase his game.
    3. People find said statements, in order to damage his reputation and taint his game (which is already pretty low).
    4. Guy is treated like the worst scum of the earth, people ask he should apologize.
    5. Guy Apologize for those statements several times.
    6. Guy is still treated like the worst scum of the earth because obviously his apologies are not sincere enough.

    Is it so hard to accept the guy’s apology for now and reserve your judgement for his future comments and actions ? or at least until we know more about the game ?

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      MajorLag says:

      More importantly, I think, is that we’re on a gaming news site. We should be focused on the relative merits or lack-there-of in the game itself.

      I’m not a fan of some of the things Orson Scott Card has said, but I still think the world would be a poorer place without Speaker for the Dead.

      • phlebas says:

        Agreed up to a point. But from what I remember Speaker for the Dead wasn’t all about what a horrible place the world would become if The Gays won.

        • darkath says:

          Again, you might want to wait for the game to be released before you judge its plot and the message it conveys.
          So far we can only accept the word of the developer guy saying he changed his way of thinking and the game/plot is not about promoting regressive ideas.
          As far as we know (from description and a long medium article on the setting one month ago) this is about exploring a post-singularity work-free society. He uses the word post-cyberpunk to describe it.
          People now seem to think it’s a manifesto against socialism and feminism based on a handful of tweets, but i entertain the hope that it can actually be a nuanced setting painted grey rather than black & white.

          • SaltTitan says:

            Thank you. People are so damn quick to jump on any little thing anyone says on the internet. H.P. Lovecraft was super racist, O.S. Card is (was?) pretty radical in his political beliefs. Whether or not the game itself is bad or pushes an agenda is an unknown until it releases but the art and the artist are not he same thing and you can like one without liking the other.

          • Raieldon says:

            You’ve done nothing to exempt your favored isms from having fatal flaws being speculated upon.

          • phlebas says:

            I am not judging the game ahead of time. The combination of the creator’s previously stated views and the descriptions which have been given of the game thus far (including the Steam description, which has now been changed) suggest that the game (at least as originally conceived) may be pushing an agenda which many of us find objectionable.

            We will not know for sure until the game is out, and (as Graham says in the article) we can hope that this is not the case and that the apology represents a genuine change of heart.

            But there’s a big difference between “we won’t know for sure what the game’s saying until we play it” and “who cares what it’s saying, this is a games site”.

          • pepperfez says:

            Lovecraft’s work is super racist. If a modern Lovecraft stated ahead of releasing a new work that it would be set in a dystopia where the white race had been overcome by foreigners, it would be a safe bet that non-racists would find that work execrable (see The Horror at Red Hook for confirmation).
            Raw Fury Guy has said that the basic narrative premise of this game will incorporate his offensively dumb politics; pointing that out, and that anyone not expecting offensively dumb politics is likely to be disappointed, is as fair as bringing up a studio’s promise to lock its games to 30fps.

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          MajorLag says:

          Here’s my point about OSC and SftD: If all you knew of the author was that he made homophobic statements you might assume anything he writes is going to be intolerant, unnuanced, and agenda driven. But Speaker for the Dead is almost the opposite of all those things.

          Sometimes people hold opinions we disagree with, and we don’t quite understand why they hold them, but we imagine we do. Don’t go painting everyone who holds a certain opinion with the same brush, or you’re really no better than people who do the same for religion, race, or gender. Prejudice. It means pre-judgement. Don’t be so eager to pre-judge, is all I’m saying.

    • Chaoslord AJ says:

      I found controverse opinions strengthen me even if uttered by the unqualified.
      The thought that people can’t face adversary and radical ideas and retreat to “safe rooms” for crying instead bothers me a lot.

      • pepperfez says:

        “Can’t” and “are fucking sick of” are entirely different. I’m not actually going to learn anything from yet another chucklefuck positing that feminism is anti-humanist and capitalism is the only moral economic system. That’s what literally every right-of-center politician argues as their entire platform, so I have plenty of contact with it already without needing to listen to it from my video games.

  11. Shazbut says:

    He could have only dreamed of PR like this

    • Just Endless says:

      actually tho. my main takeaway from this comment thread is that i ever plan to release a product, i should drop some tactless comments on my twitter a couple months in advance.

    • gwathdring says:

      The game got popular fast because of the PR Microsoft did. This mess was not good for the game’s image. Given how fast he and his parent company tried to address the issues, neither the developer nor the publisher think this is good for business.

  12. djhellsinki says:

    All he seemed to say is that he thinks feminism is not for equality and he prefers egalitarianism.How is that bad and how is that requiring an apollogy?
    For anyone who read 1984 you should know modern feminism is infested with doublespeak and doublethink, and is easily qualifying as authoritarian from a political theory perspective.Lest we forget the existence of feminists that genuinely chant “kill all men”, “women are superiour” or that the male population should be culled and kept in special camps only for fun and reproduction.
    The game looks stunning and the far-left collectivist commie style feminism it might depict is entirely in the realm of sci-fi.It’s actually quite a breath of fresh air from the supercorp and post-nuclear.

    • pepperfez says:

      “As someone who hates feminism, I just don’t see what’s wrong with this guy saying he hates feminism.” Cool, cool.

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        MajorLag says:

        You know what’s interesting? I don’t hear you saying “you’re wrong about modern feminism and here’s why…”. So what if he hates feminism? Maybe there’s legitimate cause to hate feminism?

        Or perhaps his depiction of modern feminism is a straw-man? Is the feminist movement being mischaracterized? If so, say why.

        Instead, you resort to saying he is wrong simply for disagreeing with you. If that’s the best argument you’ve got then it’s no wonder the alt-right gets away with their shit.

        • gwathdring says:

          They don’t seem to understand what feminism, the far-left, or communism are. Their particular straw-man has been used to discredit feminism since the dawn of the term feminism. The period of giving it a good-faith response is long over.

          I really don’t know how to speak on a level, clear-headed ground with someone who wants to believe in conspiracy theory nonsense like modern feminism somehow not being about advancing women’s rights.

          I don’t suppose the existence of extremist anti-feminists and misogynists magically invalidates their stance following their own logic, despite being a much more common sort of extremist. I don’t feel like this is the stance of someone willing to listen to reasoned rhetoric. This is the stance of someone who wants to believe feminism is bad.

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            MajorLag says:

            But if these people are putting out a narrative that feminism has evolved away from believing in equality and towards a more extremist message, the counter to that has to be better than “you suck”.

            See, I actually don’t know what the state of modern feminism is. I don’t go out of my way to find out and I don’t seem to frequent the kinds of places where it’d come up. At least not from the feminist perspective anyway. I frequent places like this, and slashdot, and a few other more tech-focused communities and all I see is people who complain endlessly about how SJWs and the like have turned extremist and want to round up all the cis-gendered white males into camps and whatnot.

            And you know what I see as a counter argument to that? Shit like the guy I was complaining about.

            I’m pretty sure what I’m seeing is a bunch of over-sensitive reactionary whiners who, if the have ever seen it at all, actively seek out the kind of militant extremist feminism they’re talking about for the sole purpose of being able to whine about it, but when the only counter you see is an outright accusation of sexism it’s hard not to believe them.

            And then you come across comment sections like this one, where people are tearing apart a developer based on some tweets that “imply” misogyny, or use phrases that are “linked with” sexism. I get it, coding is a thing, but you can’t just go accusing everyone of having some horrible ‘ism based on what you imagine it is they were really saying.

            And because of that, I really wish someone would use actual facts to shut down this alt-right narrative, because what people are doing is just making it worse.

          • Sound says:

            This is the bind that I find frustrating:
            It’s true that we’ve long ago been shooting down the attempts to discredit the feminist endeavor. Things are long past that. Yet, there’s always new generations of people becoming aware of politics and such, and without fully warding off these old and persistent attacks(again), some will conclude that feminism cannot do so. It’s the old “use the search function, noob” problem. So there’s at least some benefit from engaging all the tired old back-and-forths, over and over again.

            But. It’s. So. Tiring.

          • Jerykk says:

            Modern feminism is associated with the most vocal feminists and those tend to be the most extreme. This is true of any ideology, whether it’s Islam, Christianity, conservatism, etc. Extreme feminists have no interest in equality. They basically want reverse discrimination, where men are the oppressed and women the favored. Most feminists are perfectly reasonable people who are genuinely interested in equality. Unfortunately, these feminists are not the ones that get all the media exposure.

          • gwathdring says:

            This is absurd. The most vocal members of a group are not even remotely always it’s most extreme. Are fanatical Christian cults the most vocal and socially recognized members of the Christian faith? Of course not. Are new heretical organizations and sub-sects more renowned as part of modern Catholicism than the Pope? No.

            You’re asserting things as fact that are not facts. When you go through mainstream media outlets to look for media about feminism, you don’t see people who want to make men legally and socially subservient. You see mostly pop stars and other celebrities talking about how they think women are awesome and they want women to be empowered and have equal rights. You see think pieces about wage equality and the Wonder Woman movie.

            Even Radical Feminism typically refers to groups who believe the entire structure of our society makes equality impossible; they seek radical changes to our socio-political structures to enable equal rights for women, not to get revenge on men.

            The people you seem to think are the loudest voices in feminism are not. They do not represent most people’s exposure to feminism. They do not represent academic feminism, popular online feminism, mainstream media promotion of feminism, Hollywood promotion of feminism, or any other structure under the feminist umbrella that could be reasonably said to be the “loudest” one. They do not get all the media attention.

            They’re certainly more rare than men who claim women shouldn’t work in science and engineering, HR departments that refuse to help victims of serial sexual harassment or otherwise promote outmoded sexist politics.

            Why do these unicorn anti-man feminists reflect back on feminism more strongly than clear sexism within our society reflects back on people like you who discredit feminism so dishonestly? Than clear legal and economic disparities reflect back on your dismissal of the people who want to change them?

            Exactly which major public figures in American feminist politics are suggesting some kind of dystopic matriarchy? Octavia Butler? Eartha Kitt? Corretta Scott King? Alice Walker? Hillary Clinton? Ellen? Oprah? Beyonce?

            I could dig deep into Catholic cults and politics and pull out extremist figures and talk about how they’re the loudest and most influential figures in shaping how people perceive Catholicism. But that’s not the reality of what people hear on television, read in books, talk about online, talk about with their friends, talk about at political rallies.

            You are not engaging with mainstream modern feminism, but you’re happy to blame it for every fringe theorist, extremist, and poorly informed Tumblr blog you’ve come across or worse perhaps even just imagined it to exist because people told you that’s what feminism is and you never bothered to check.

  13. comic knight says:

    Game looks awesome. Art is about personal expression, there is no reason he has to conform to anyone elses ideas. The responsibility of thoughts and beliefs lays on each of us as individuals. You have a lot more to worry about if your worldview can be shattered after playing a videogame.

  14. Premium User Badge

    Drib says:

    Remember when people could look at a game and be like “hey, that game looks neat” and not “let’s yell at the author for his shitty opinions from months/years ago”?

    I get that he had, maybe even still has, some shitty beliefs. But maybe let him make and sell his game, and then judge the game on its own merits?

    Damn, people. Not everything has to be a huge war, you know?

    • pepperfez says:

      A lot of the anger at this guy is for his history of supporting a reactionary political movement dedicated to making everything a huge war. GarbageGrate’s goal was to drive women and political progressives out of games (“Actually, it was about ethics…” No, stop it.), so a politically-charged game from one of its supporters is naturally going to get a hostile reception from those groups. The game, according to the studio’s own statements, incorporates thoroughly reactionary politics, and pointing that out is absolutely part of judging it on its own merits.

    • gwathdring says:

      This would be more convincing if some of his statements weren’t directly related to the game’s subject matter. He has suggested his game represents the dark future of feminism “winning” in addition to presenting poorly conceived, straw-filled rants about feminism. He has suggested the game explores the dark side of artificial birth, further suggesting there’s something wrong with women having children while continuing to work (he also referenced drinking and smoking, just to hammer home that artificial birth is an escape from moral responsibility, not an escape from an dangerous health conditions of pregnancy).

      There are a few others, but the picture painted by his statements doesn’t suggest to me that his cyberpunk is a savvy one. The opinions on which he has founded his dystopia and his vision of cyberpunk seem, to me, immature and in places sexist.

      I’d honestly be willing to see where he went with the death of labor. I’m a bit of an anti-capitalist and I believe in a robust social safety net including things like basic income (I’m more interested in yet more radical restructuring, but it’s a yet more long term ideal). I still think its interesting to consider how a dramatic paradigm shift in how we approach work and leisure time and in how much of our society we automate might go wrong. Even here, though, where I’m quite interested in exploring philosophies and speculations … his statements and his game summary imply the more superficial angle here. The old school protestant romanticism that hard work is what makes life worth living blended with an odd twinge of capitalism that implies only the struggle to survive financially (and often therefore literally) can produce meaningful human culture. So I’m concerned that won’t turn out so well either, but I would be much more willing to wait and see where they go with this side of their fiction if it weren’t for the uncomfortable resonances of sexism.

    • thelastdonut says:

      Mmm thats the thing though. And I should be prefacing this with how I’m not x y and z but I don’t have time for all that BS. Its one thing to say ‘let him make/sell his game’, its another to say ‘let people buy his game without X piece of knowledge’. When this trailer debuted I literally sat up in my chair from interest, it was possibly a day 1 buy for me just off of that, all that interest disappeared about 12 hours later when this stuff started popping up (thanks Notch…). Now, if I learn that a game creator has a view that is opposite of mine, why would I give that person money? Additionally, how is it a good thing if others make that uninformed purchase?

      Its possible Soret has changed his mind and grown up since the GG thing, but the timing of this apology is hella suspect. I’m not saying crucify a man over comments made years ago, but I’m not eager to blindly believe him (again, thanks Notch…). Time and the internet’s obsessive investigating will tell, hopefully things turn positive and I can look at this game with untainted eyes again.

      • Premium User Badge

        MajorLag says:

        “Now, if I learn that a game creator has a view that is opposite of mine, why would I give that person money?”

        Exactly why you shouldn’t shop at stores owned by people of different religions from yours right? Better make sure that Amazon re-seller follows the same political blog as you!

        Seriously man. Differing opinions come from differing perspectives and there is value in be willing to listen and try and understand other perspectives. Let him make his game, and if the reviews say it isn’t trash and the theme interests you, then buy it. It’s possible that the man is capable of conveying a more nuanced and persuasive argument in his work than in a 140 character twitter feed. And if not, don’t buy it. Same as any other uninteresting or crappy game.

  15. Uncle Fass says:

    GamerGate was a mistake, no question about that, but to prevent anything similar from happening in the future I think we would do better to actually look at WHY people supported the movement, something I think most people still can’t grasp.

    No, because they liked ‘harassing women’ doesn’t count. It certainly was the inception of the movement but many were naive of this and had other reasons to back it, and you’ll be surprised to find someone is willing to listen if you don’t throw stones before even starting, like the gaming press seems to be doing a lot of.

  16. PantsGuy says:

    I can practically see the outline of Graham’s self righteous errection as he strains to create contraversy ex nihlo.

    “I am for egalitarism. I don’t care boy, girl, alien” – wow, such hatred and discrimination from a three year old tweet. Keep fighting the brave fight again egalitarism RPS.

    • April March says:

      I am pretty suspicious of “egalitarism” because:
      “Oh I’m an egalitarian. I don’t see any difference between people.”
      *sees data showing women make less money than men*
      “Well, I don’t see any difference between these groups, so I guess the group making less money must be less competent.”

      • Premium User Badge

        MajorLag says:

        Actually the narrative is that they don’t negotiate as well and their careers are often harmed by taking time off to raise a kid. Which seems to make sense. I mean, if you could get away with paying women less for the same work, then some savvy corporation would only hire women and save a boat load, or so the narrative goes.

        But what makes sense on the surface and what the data tells us can easily be very different. It’s possible there exists data normalized for these factors, I wouldn’t know because people seem to prefer to just slap an ‘ism on everyone instead of making a compelling argument whenever this debate comes up.

        • batraz says:

          Olympic records :
          100m : 9, 63 / 10, 62
          10000m : 27:01.17 / 29:17.45
          Same goes with bow shooting, painters, music composers, mathematicians…
          Of course, many girls run faster than I or are much smarter, but generally speaking, equality is a concept or maybe a political goal, not a reality. And you know what ? It’s not a problem because we humans all love and support each other : for instance my wife helps me where I’m weak, and I hope to do the same with her. But if you want to feed on political anger and resentment, go on, friends.

          • gwathdring says:

            By which standards exactly have women failed to advance music, painting and mathematics to the same standards as men? Women were primarily responsible for the mathematical and computational work that put humans on the moon. Women were the bedrock of computer science.

            Painting and music are not things you can readily compare in the form of olympic records as to who made the “best” one, however there is a rich history of men stealing or stifling work by women in these fields–and others, such as nuclear physics–which greatly complicates a review of women in the history of art. Though you can still find accomplished painters, musicians and composers from any major musical movement despite their work being much more likely to be discouraged, stolen or ignored at the time of its creation.

            When selecting for the fastest human beings in the entire world, yes. The fastest men are faster. There are broad patterns of human development that can explain why this is, but as with all human physiology the individual variation is immense. That’s not the end of the story, though. This, too, though is a gap made artificially larger by cultural and social practice; women’s athletic programs are typically given less money. They are not offered the best facilities or best trainers and some countries do not train women for the olympics at all. In professional athletics–an important lifeline for people looking to spend the amount of time required to train for world championships and the Olympics–women are paid less across the board. You can talk about supply and demand for viewership if you like, but the end result is that men get better equipment and training and that has an effect on performance. It is not a coincidence that we continue to push records for human speed higher and higher and it’s not because we’re evolving at a partiuclarly great pace to be faster runners. As populations increase, more outliers can be found. People are getting taller, which helps. But we’re also getting better at nutrition, health care, training, and equipment. Clothing technology can greatly enhance a swimmer’s ability or a runner’s ability to reach a new top-speed. Shoes with better action, clothing with less friction and better cooling, etc.

            Using a two minute difference in a 10km race between the fastest people ever to run at the Olympics is very poor science and serves only to show the conclusion you’re looking for. When we study human physiology and behavior, yes we see broad trends of difference between men and women and this is to be expected because of hormonal differences and developmental differences; but we’re finding more and more that human biology is less consistent and dependable than we used to think. Exact development patterns are not as consistent from one child to another as we’d perhaps like. And broad systems of people have immense individual variation.

            Other than being a professional sprinter who races against other professional sprinters in a similar speed class, there isn’t much practical difference at work here. Neither you nor I can run 100m in either 9.63 or 10.62 seconds. Continuing to cling to the clearest examples of differences between men and women doesn’t exactly give truth to your words that inequality is not a problem.

            People not being exactly mathematically equal in all things is not a problem. There being patterns and trends in human physiology and behavior is not a problem. What is a problem is when those trends are harmful without cause. When women working in the same field with the same training and the same competancy records earn less money or are harassed continually until they give up and work elsewhere–as is the case at many tech firms–we can’t just throw up our hands and say “But my favorite painters are all men!” or “Newton was a man, and he made math right?” or “Men sprint faster.” It doesn’t matter if you think it’s fine for one group of people to run slower than another group of people–no one is asking for the government to force stopwatches to time women at 9.62 seconds for 100m. People are asking for better legal recourse in the event of workplace harassment, better pay protections, better family leave protections, and better healthcare that doesn’t skimp on things that are rather important for women’s health but maybe not so much for men’s (yet, we’re working on the technology) like hormonal birth control.