To crush your enemies with your ePeen
Posted by Tobold's Blog [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 7 June 2013, 4:36 am
Arnold Schwarzenegger as Conan the Barbarian, when asked what is best in life, responded with the famous quote: "To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.". If you had to describe that point of view, you'd inevitably end up with something like "macho", something which makes it clear that this is a very male sentiment, which is unlikely to be shared by many women. There are online games that are very much about crushing your enemies, in the sense that you don't only want to win, but also want to see the loser suffering. And it isn't for nothing that people call the attitude of inflated ego and imagined superiority in online games "ePeen", another very male reference.

So I am not at all surprised about the news that EVE Online in spite of its very female name only has 4% of female players. To me EVE has always been the ultimate ePeen game, the one game that enables you to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women. Or to be more precise, it is the game where crushing your enemies with your ePeen is the unique sales point of the game, while the more peaceful activities like mining are much less attractive, not to say boring.

On the other hand I don't really see a problem with having a game which almost exclusively attracts men. I doubt that the Playboy has more than 4% female readers, and I don't think anybody considers that a problem. Other content creation industries aren't targeting 50:50 gender equality for their products either, there are clearly "chick flick" movies, books for male and female audiences, and lots of men and women magazines. I'd be very much opposed to some sort of regulation that tried to ensure that everything published had to be equally attractive to men and women. I would however very much like to see a game similar to EVE with a virtual galaxy to explore which *isn't* all about ePeen and hurting people, and offers more interesting peaceful and PvE activities. Gender equality isn't about making everything the same, it is about valuing men and women equally, in spite of their differences.
Tobold's Blog



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