Author Topic: Women & Roguelikes  (Read 32234 times)

Darren Grey

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #30 on: September 18, 2012, 12:54:34 PM »
Well look at the difference between mathematics and computer science.  Both were considered the domain of men before, with hand-wavy explanations for hunter instincts informing logic.  Nowadays women are just as successful at maths, apart from at the absolute highest echelons.  But women are still generally rare computing, in spite of it requiring the same mental aptitude as mathematics.  The difference can only be cultural, and it really is a huge difference.

Consider also the big rise in women in politics.  Or in any other male-dominated field in the last 70 years.  It's not all equal but it's a lot more equal than it was.  This is cultural norms being overcome.

Honestly biology may have some small factor, but when the differences are so extreme as to have only 3% of the userbase one gender (as with roguelikes) it suggests something much more than biology at play.

jim

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #31 on: September 18, 2012, 01:58:11 PM »
There are major biological differences between men and women. Looks at the stats for IQs on women - generally a tight grouping on the average. IQs for men are all over the damn place - more geniuses, more idiots. Different parts of our brains light up when we're doing the same things; more accurately, women tend to activate more of their brains when doing the same things as men. They're better lateral thinkers on average. Maybe it's the myopia of male focus (again, on average) that makes men more into RLs.

There are definite, scientifically verified, major differences between the ways our brains work. Trivializing these differences brings us further away from understanding one another; it not only intentionally distorts the debate, but it obscures information that would make it easier to communicate across the gender divide. After all, the operating assumption is that all of this study and attempt at dialog creates a better understanding, more equality, thus a better world, no? So, my fellow progressives, why equivocate about this? Are we afraid that acknowledging these facts will weaken our position? If so, if we're being that tactical and disingenuous, why discuss anything at all? Let's just lobby our groups and indoctrinate first-year sociology students like we always do.

Of course, it is also patently ridiculous to deny that there are significant cultural barriers between women and achievement in areas where they have been traditionally excluded. That is an argument right out of the 40s-50s and I am frankly surprised to see it from someone who knows how to use the internet. Read the newspaper, or better yet, talk to some guys at a bar to get a flavor for the hidden underbelly of misogyny that still pervades a lot of the civilized world.

By the same token, I've seen absolutely no tit-for-tat factor when it comes to spheres where women dominate: women are CRUSHING men in school. Women are taking over the field of medicine. As far as that goes, the only concern I hear from the progressive camp is that the trend is not pervasive enough, i.e. "Why aren't there more female programmers?"

I guess both sides are playing their cards pretty close to their chest. Love is a Battlefield.

Eudoxus

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #32 on: September 18, 2012, 02:03:50 PM »
An episode of Roguelike Radio on women & roguelikes would be really interesting, provided the panel was comprised mostly women who play roguelikes.  Johanna Ploog would obviously be awesome to have on.  Tiffany Martin from Cake Pie (http://cake-pie.com/about/) would also be great.  She's written about an experience on the Dredmor forums where one of the devs laid down the smack on casual sexism: http://cake-pie.com/women-gamers-gaslamp-games-forums-are-amazing/931/).  Additionally, I know a couple female mathematicians who play nethack (whether I can get them to agree to a podcast is uncertain).
« Last Edit: September 18, 2012, 02:24:04 PM by Eudoxus »

Darren Grey

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #33 on: September 18, 2012, 05:07:12 PM »
I'd like to have Johanna on to talk about DCSS and roguelikes design. I'd like to have Tiffany on to discuss Dredmor (winning with a random build is awesome). Having them on just because the episode is about women seems insulting.

Plus I worry about the underbelly of misogyny it would expose in the roguelike community. Some of the reaction I've seen to Tiffany's blog post has been quite disgusting, for instance. Not from abject sexism, but just dumb ignorance. Some people I otherwise respect reveal themselves to have very backwards stances on this subject.

Oh, and on the IRDC episode we talked briefly with Johanna about why so few women are into RLs, and her response was "Don't ask me, I'm obviously not normal" ;)

Eudoxus

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #34 on: September 18, 2012, 05:42:23 PM »
Having them on just because the episode is about women seems insulting.
Perhaps you're right, and it's of course totally y'alls call, but I think it's all about how you phrase it.  Johanna and Tiffany wouldn't be on the panel just because they're women, they'd be there because they are distinguished women whose opinions interest us.  I've seen panels like this in the math world that worked really well.

Plus I worry about the underbelly of misogyny it would expose in the roguelike community. Some of the reaction I've seen to Tiffany's blog post has been quite disgusting, for instance. Not from abject sexism, but just dumb ignorance. Some people I otherwise respect reveal themselves to have very backwards stances on this subject.
That's a legitimate worry, but I don't think silence is a better answer.

p.s. - I'm a huge fan of roguelike radio! you all do an excellent job!
« Last Edit: September 18, 2012, 05:45:00 PM by Eudoxus »

Irinka

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #35 on: September 18, 2012, 07:08:02 PM »
An episode of Roguelike Radio on women & roguelikes would be really interesting, provided the panel was comprised mostly women who play roguelikes.

I think it's a bad idea. A really, really bad idea. I don't think that gender is important when you talk about games. People, regardless of gender, play games because it's fun. That's your answer on why some women play roguelikes. If those people are game developers, then make roguelike radio episode inviting them because they are awesome game developers. Not because they are female. Otherwise it will probably be a discussion about stereotypes and that's not the most thrilling subject, not for a fun podcast about games, anyway.

I don't really see the reason to care that much about women who play roguelike games at all. You will never meet us in real life anyway :)


Darren Grey

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #36 on: September 18, 2012, 07:29:10 PM »
Hah, very true.  Behind these anonymous personas perhaps all of us are actually women pretending to be male roguelike players and developers.  Cause y'know seriously, what else would cool women like us pretend to be...?  ;)

TheCakePie

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #37 on: September 19, 2012, 03:34:28 AM »
(accidental double post, but not to be confused with the missing post I mentioned)
« Last Edit: September 19, 2012, 03:51:13 AM by TheCakePie »

TheCakePie

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #38 on: September 19, 2012, 03:49:44 AM »
I wrote reply to this thread already but it seems that I either failed at posting or it was deleted. I'm just gonna post again.

I'm going to focus on the good points people had to say here.

An episode of Roguelike Radio on women & roguelikes would be really interesting, provided the panel was comprised mostly women who play roguelikes.  Johanna Ploog would obviously be awesome to have on.  Tiffany Martin from Cake Pie (http://cake-pie.com/about/) would also be great.  She's written about an experience on the Dredmor forums where one of the devs laid down the smack on casual sexism: http://cake-pie.com/women-gamers-gaslamp-games-forums-are-amazing/931/).  Additionally, I know a couple female mathematicians who play nethack (whether I can get them to agree to a podcast is uncertain).

I think this is a terrific idea. I'm not specifically endorsing myself here but in general I'd like to see people included in discussion who aren't normally represented. Naturally these should still be people who have something of value to contribute, but we should stop acting like only guys play rogues.

Quote
I think it's a bad idea. A really, really bad idea. I don't think that gender is important when you talk about games. People, regardless of gender, play games because it's fun. That's your answer on why some women play roguelikes. If those people are game developers, then make roguelike radio episode inviting them because they are awesome game developers. Not because they are female. Otherwise it will probably be a discussion about stereotypes and that's not the most thrilling subject, not for a fun podcast about games, anyway.

I don't really see the reason to care that much about women who play roguelike games at all. You will never meet us in real life anyway

I think that you raise an important concern. I'd hate to see this done horribly too. It'd be easy to do that, without any research or effort you could just ask boring, predictable, stereotypical questions that don't mean anything or act like we're magic for playing a hard game. I was involved in 2010 in the Three Moves Ahead podcast talking about women in strategy gaming. The demographics are low for women in strategy gaming too, and the podcast was done really well so I know this can work, it just requires some finesse. Just because an idea could go wrong doesn't mean it needs to be shut down.

I'd really think women would join communities and play more games where women are underrepresented if people were more welcoming. Having women visible helps create a welcoming atmosphere.

As for me, I'd think it's smart to look for new perspectives beyond the only one usually represented. Grab a disabled rogue expert, or someone who's gay, or a woman, or wtf someone who isn't English/American/Australian.

TL;DR: Include women good. Be a dick bad.

Darren Grey

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #39 on: September 19, 2012, 04:23:19 AM »
Are you really suggesting we don't have enough international accents on the podcast...? Disabilities is something I'd like to cover more - we're arranging an episode about designing for the visually impaired right now, but there are wider accessibility issues too. A gender podcast seems weird though. It's something that's more to do with how communities behave, not how the games are made or designed. Roguelikes thankfully tend to avoid misogyny ingrained in the artwork or gameplay...

But I do agree more visibility of women into roguelikes would be a positive thing.

Have you a link to the TMA episode you mentioned? I'm curious to see how they dealt with the subject matter.

By the way we were thinking of inviting you on another Dredmor episode, TheCakePie, on account of you being a skilled player who has publicly blogged about the game. We don't really have any concrete plans though...

TheCakePie

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #40 on: September 19, 2012, 05:41:59 AM »
Are you really suggesting we don't have enough international accents on the podcast...?
No, and I guess I could have been more clear. I was making a general statement about inclusiveness of underrepresented persons. I made a list of examples of what I meant but it wasn't aimed at your podcast directly.

Disabilities is something I'd like to cover more - we're arranging an episode about designing for the visually impaired right now, but there are wider accessibility issues too.

I like that idea too. The importance of accessibility is becoming more known, and as such I'm sure there'd be a lot to discuss.

A gender podcast seems weird though. It's something that's more to do with how communities behave, not how the games are made or designed. Roguelikes thankfully tend to avoid misogyny ingrained in the artwork or gameplay...

But I do agree more visibility of women into roguelikes would be a positive thing.

It's too bad you think it'd be weird. I thought about the problems that might come up and I thought they were solvable, but it's not my podcast, lol. I think you're right that rogues are one of the more gender inclusive games, and it's likely one reason I always seem to drift toward them.

Have you a link to the TMA episode you mentioned? I'm curious to see how they dealt with the subject matter.

Yeah, NP I just didn't want to put it up and open the floor to hellacious trolling. Three Moves Ahead Ep 48: The Gaming Gender Gap: http://flashofsteel.com/index.php/2010/01/19/three-moves-ahead-episode-48-the-gaming-gender-gap/

By the way we were thinking of inviting you on another Dredmor episode, TheCakePie, on account of you being a skilled player who has publicly blogged about the game. We don't really have any concrete plans though...

Considering including me is news to me, thank you. (You know I don't just play Dredmor, right?) I'm pretty surprised I was actually mentioned in this discussion at all, but if you still think about it I'm openminded to discussion about that at some point. Anything like that would have to wait a while, I'm adjusting to some hardcore meds. I'm easy to find though so get in touch if you want to talk about it later.

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #41 on: September 19, 2012, 05:58:22 AM »
  Welcome Cake. No worries about trolling here. We only really have one troll, but he's more just a negative nancy than a died in the wool shit starter. Wait...is 'negative nancy' sexist? Lol...

  As far as gender disparity and all of that, I figure as long as choices are available and doors are open then it's all good.

  I have a buddy that can't play games anymore unless he sneaks around because his lady thinks it's a juvenile waste of time. That may be a different topic, but the interplay of gender, relationships, social 'norms' and gamer shame is a very interesting one. It's bound to whip up all types of speak first think later comments, but still interesting.

  I am guilty of such things myself. I'll not ride the high horse. I recently equated owning a MAC to being one of those sissy kids that plays soccer (a uniquely American stereotype)...I defended the statement at the time but in hindsight feel like a moron. Stupid is as stupid does, so they say.

-Jo

Krice

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #42 on: September 19, 2012, 06:22:19 AM »
But I do agree more visibility of women into roguelikes would be a positive thing.

Why? Does it matter what is the gender of a player?

Krice

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #43 on: September 19, 2012, 06:28:09 AM »
I don't really see the reason to care that much about women who play roguelike games at all. You will never meet us in real life anyway :)

That's funny, because every time there is a woman on a forum like this someone is always getting that girl. Well, not maybe here, because this is a global forum and distances are long, but anyway. It always happens: a nerdy, but sexy girl appears on forums and some god damn ass is secretly hitting on her. I've started to see that as a sole purpose of women appearing on forums. They don't even try to discuss anything related to the subject.

guest509

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Re: Women & Roguelikes
« Reply #44 on: September 19, 2012, 06:33:58 AM »
  Well Krice it doesn't matter in some respects, but when something is so obviously awesome it is definitely a legit line of inquiry as to why it is largely recognized by dudes and not ladies.

  So you ask questions. Interesting questions. Are we designing things that only dudes like? What does that even mean? Is there a way we can include women and basically double the number of players? Without pandering? Can we even discuss this topic without seeming ignorant? Uninformed?

  The community is already enriched because now I have Cake's blog on my radar.

EDIT: "Forums like this"... Krice. Dude. There are no forums like this. We talked about this man. This is the bestest most respectfulest forum there is! It's the only one I go to. I can't handle the other ones. I do comment on RRR and ASCII DREAMS.