Is Red Dead Redemption Really Violent Towards Women?
Red Dead Redemption 2 has been accused of inciting violence towards women. Do we agree?
Red Dead Redemption 2 is under fire for alleged displays of violence against women. The western action title, released in October by Rockstar Games, is rife with violence and adult themes. However, recent reports have accused the game of inciting violence towards. Is this a fair assessment of one of the biggest games of the year?
Depictions of violence towards women in video games are common. Since the bloom of the gaming industry, many have been quick to accuse the industry of inciting violence towards women. It should not be surprising that Red Dead Redemption 2 has fallen to the same fate.
The accusations have sparked from a YouTube video. Uploaded by YouTuber with over 600,000 subscribers, the video has amassed over 1.8 million views since it was reinstated after an initial ban by the website.
The video is not to be condoned. It is easily contended that the provocative title wanted the negative attention it received. The backlash on the video is well deserved. The clear displays of a misogynistic attitude is outdated. Steps taken to reduce misogynistic views in modern societies are pushing forward. For such reasons, the video has not been linked in this article so to avoid bringing more attention to the uploader.
However, the video has ignited claims that Red Dead Redemption 2, in its entirety, depicts violence against women.
Red Dead Redemption 2, like a lot of Rockstar Games titles, is violent in its nature. Much of the gameplay includes the assault and murder of male characters, but it does not encourage violence against women.
It is true that the player can attack NPCs (non-playable characters), male or female. Players are not prompted to attack or assault female characters, but they can.
Many sources have been incorrect in saying that this can be done 'without repercussions'. The game features something of an 'honour' system, where players will be rewarded our punished depending on their actions. Players will be sought out in the game for their dishonourable actions.
So what is the solution? Make it impossible to assault female characters? Perhaps.
So, does Red Dead Redemption 2 encourage violence towards women? No, it does not. These are the actions of a singular male who had no better use of his time. Does this speak for all video games or all male gamers? Absolutely not, and we should not push the idea that it does.
I very much disagree with the idea that these videos were a 'clear display of misogyny'. The guy did it as a joke that a lot of people found funny, and so it spread. There are all kinds of reasons you can laugh at those videos without being a misogynist.
And while you say the Backlash was warranted, the only thing that did was make him even more popular when everyone started talking about it, and even more so when it got mass flagged and removed, it's been the biggest reason in modern days why jokes people find offensive spread, because people keep saying that people can't make these jokes.
I'm not saying you're one of the ones who supported the videos being taken down originally, but that was what that backlash did.
That said yeah, it's common for people these days to take any chance they can to say games are causing certain attitudes, and it's been common for a while now. One of the big examples I remember is all the info in game that was cut from the Feminist Frequency video on one of the Hitman games.
I just think in the end it's this default assumption offensive or dark humor like a guy punching womens suffragettes in the face is too easily lopped into being Misogynistic just because someone finds it offensive, or thinks some kinds of humor should be off limits. It's assuming intent that more likely then not isn't there.
You argument is sound and you have some very strong points. I definitely understand your point of view and it certainly does shine multiple angles on this argument.
Great response to the article! Very thought provoking!
Its a sandbox game that allows you the freedom to assault anyone (though from what I know kids are off the table, thankfully.) If you can kill any man in the game, why should women be any different?
I remember in the first RDR, you could tie up a woman and leave her on the train tracks until a train came by. I didn't see anywhere near the backlash 7 years ago when that was going on.
Have we become that much more PC or is the fact that its suffragettes on the end of the violence the issue today?
I think that as long as you're able to attack any NPC (excluding kids), its silly to exclude women. You could argue that it encourages violence against women, but if you go down that route do we have to start excluding women from fighting games because Ryu shouldn't be hitting Chun-Li?
Indeed Indeed! I concur. Its one of those things were people should simply take it for what it is. A game a nothing more! Once we start adding inclusions everywhere, we'll be going backwards and playing pacman (Not that there is anything wrong with that haha)
Perfect summary, I'm especially thankful for leaving out political nuances here.\n\nAs a Rockstar title, it's fairly expectable and acceptable. The annoying part is that people can spread their anti-feminist ideas through content like this.\n\nOf course, one's response might be to "eliminate the reason, why people act like this, instead of attacking the act itself". But it's not that simple, we all have different views on what's acceptable and what isn't, so not letting these videos spread is perfectly reasonable and morally right.\n\nThe tough part is to do it in a way that doesn't cause backlash; that is, let people criticise feminism but in a way that is still within the accepted boundaries of culture and courtesy.\n\nBecause what this video causes is often way beyond that - no wonder GamerGate was cancer.
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Thank you for the kind words! Opinions are always welcome and sometimes hot topics like these have multiple angles!
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