Gender politics


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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 07:29

Re: Gender politics

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 07:32

Re: Gender politics

HardboiledGargoyle wrote:Image


There is no way thats real
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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 07:39

Re: Gender politics

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 07:42

Re: Gender politics

I want to point out that it is very obvious to me why people might be against this change, and it has little to do with sexism, in a classic definition of the word, anyway, which is why it's a bit annoying to me that Tiktacy stole the thread with his arguments about reality and whatnot - it was not my idea to argue that having lots of female uniques is "unrealistic" (I'm not trying to paint myself in a positive light, I'm hardly a feminist but I'm not a "-4 Str" person either - video games, most of them, are all about fantasy and escapism).


People play Crawl, people play Crawl a lot. I did play Crawl a lot, still do sometimes. We get attached to weirdest stuff - to certain mechanics, to food, and yes, to uniques. We kill them, occasionally they kill us, meeting one is like meeting a god friend (that might kill you). We have some ideas of what they are based on their tiles (sorry, console players), their descriptions and yes, that includes gender, obviously. That's why a change here, change for an arbitrary reason like maintaining an equal m/f ratio, might feel wrong. It does to me wrt Ijyb, I don't personally care about other uniques, though some people do. I would oppose degendering Eresh as well, as I think a female goddess of death and underworld is a cool trope.


Anyway, it's your game and your characters. Just please, bring back itemdest!

Edit: in short, on the devs' part I would get the "people enjoy our game and get really attached to even the minor details and characters" message out of this whole thing, not "Crawl players really hate women", though I obviously can't speak for every Crawl player!

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 08:11

Re: Gender politics

Sar wrote:Anyway, it's your game and your characters. Just please, bring back itemdest!


oh man i'm glad i read to the end of this post before thanking
take it easy

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 08:17

Re: Gender politics

Arrhythmia wrote:
Sar wrote:Anyway, it's your game and your characters. Just please, bring back itemdest!


oh man i'm glad i read to the end of this post before thanking


Literally the only reason I didn't thank him.
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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 08:17

Re: Gender politics

I've been going back and forth on interacting any more with this thread. But I do want to say that I do not appreciate the implication in several posts that people who are skeptical of this change or of the progressive political reasoning that appears to be behind it therefore must be sexists, or in favor of the subjugation of women, or hold to some version of biological sexual essentialism. At best it strikes of marked lack of imagination: on the change in particular, Sar just gave one fairly obvious reason not to like this specific change that has nothing to do with sexism; and on the reasoning that has been wheeled out in favor of it, critiques of the sort of progressive identity politics inspiring the change are not at all confined to the right or to conservatives. It is not an intellectual virtue to be unable to conceive of how people could disagree with you without being vicious. And at worst it's just plain old intellectual dishonesty and bullying your opponents, and it's pretty hard not to see that in at least some of the posts in this thread. That is not attractive.

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 10:25

Re: Gender politics

Tiktacy wrote:The reality is, uniques were created with a letter in mind, and that letter should be respected and not tampered with for no reason.
FTFY.

Holds at least for the old uniques. No ideas how those freshman developers come up with their uniques. (Some of them can't read, I swear.)

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 10:32

Re: Gender politics

HardboiledGargoyle wrote:wow if you search "gender", 9/94 threads are locked
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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 11:24

Re: Gender politics

andreas and Sar, for what it's worth, I don't personally feel but can understand the sentiment from some players that were attached to a certain mental image of specific uniques. However, it took over a hundred posts before someone said that in those words. In the meantime, we got many posts specifically complaining about gender politics (as if it's only gender politics when the gender balance is equal-ish), and we got many posts complaining about a mismatch with ideas of biological essentialism. Maybe neither of those reflect your specific positions, and if not, then the responses to those posts aren't responses to you. It's not fair to pretend that the responses to a specific set of posts reflect an unwillingness to hear all dissenting opinions when the specific dissenting opinions you happen to hold weren't the ones being addressed in those responses -- and perhaps weren't even expressed in the thread at all at the time those responses were written.

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 11:31

Re: Gender politics

FWIW I thought "people get attached to a certain mental image of specific uniques" was pretty obvious, I only had to clarify that because people were discussing different things entirely. I mean, I certainly expected that kind of posts, I didn't expect them to be the focus. People didn't lament the Mountain Dwarves because Mountain Dwarves were a caricature of masculinity, after all... or did they? Dun-dun-dunnnn!

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 14:15

Re: Gender politics

Another solution is to make uniques have random gender in every game and all text be dynamic.
I am not sure if I want female Jorgrun differ from male Jorgrun (for example, having higher chance to cast spells instead of moving forward, or always having staff of earth), but it can be done too.
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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 14:34

Re: Gender politics

HardboiledGargoyle wrote:wow if you search "gender", 9/94 threads are locked
people are razzing each other over being uncomfortable about ideas
something fishy is going on and I don't understand it while people are smug all around me, i mean, you don't see quite this in discussions of other design decisions

BTW
ydeve wrote: claims that you can't have a female Ijyb tougher than the average male goblin are ungrounded in (either) reality. Uniques are unique, so there's no reason why they should be in the middle of the bell curve.
this argument falls on its face because uniques are extraordinary and thus out of the middle; you're really looking at the tails of the distribution, and dozens of outliers (uniques) taken from that tail, which form their own distribution, and it is claimed that the high end, the top <1%, is better divided evenly. So current design is to stratify monsters, and balance their gender at special levels of distinction, because, maybe, the "corrupting influence of the realm of zot" is turning the dungeon into some kind of egalitarian utopia?

People were complaining that Ijyb had more hp than other goblins...
Besides if you're talking about elite fighters with weapons, greater physical strength is one of the less important factors.

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 14:45

Re: Gender politics

Lasty wrote:On another topic, meta-analysis of studies of men and women shows that on almost every studied trait, there's much more variation within a given gender than between the two genders; that is to say, the bell curves of male and female quantities of a given trait substantially overlap. That includes physical strength broadly. The one exception is, interestingly, throwing distance, where men tend to significantly outperform women.


Lasty, you have to be careful not to draw the wrong conclusions from that, because you're comparing apples and oranges: variation within a group to the difference between two averages. Unless group differences are absolutely overwhelming (think mice vs whales), that first number is of course going to be bigger than the second number. But it doesn't negate the group average difference or mean it is unimportant -- indeed, generally it's going to be more important than the variation within any particular group.

Examples:
The variation between the weight of dogs is bigger than the difference between the average weight of dogs and the average weight of cats.
The variation between possible outcomes when given a homeopathic remedy (aka placebo) is greater than the difference between the average placebo result and the average painkiller result.
etc.

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 14:55

Re: Gender politics

Tiktacy wrote:However, the apparent reasoning for it leads me to believe that the devs responsible for the change are more interested in pandering to a political agenda than actually improving the flavor of their uniques.


Exactly. The problem, such as it was, was that Crawl had more male-flavored uniques than female-flavored. Instead of creating some more female uniques from the ground up, the solution was to... label a bunch of the male uniques as female without changing anything else about their flavor, not even their names.

(And then act shocked that this causes a stir on the tavern. Note to the devs: if you have any major balance changes in mind, push them through now while we're all too busy arguing about sex to notice)

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 15:14

Re: Gender politics

Rast wrote:
Lasty wrote:On another topic, meta-analysis of studies of men and women shows that on almost every studied trait, there's much more variation within a given gender than between the two genders; that is to say, the bell curves of male and female quantities of a given trait substantially overlap. That includes physical strength broadly. The one exception is, interestingly, throwing distance, where men tend to significantly outperform women.


Lasty, you have to be careful not to draw the wrong conclusions from that, because you're comparing apples and oranges: variation within a group to the difference between two averages. Unless group differences are absolutely overwhelming (think mice vs whales), that first number is of course going to be bigger than the second number. But it doesn't negate the group average difference or mean it is unimportant -- indeed, generally it's going to be more important than the variation within any particular group.

Examples:
The variation between the weight of dogs is bigger than the difference between the average weight of dogs and the average weight of cats.
The variation between possible outcomes when given a homeopathic remedy (aka placebo) is greater than the difference between the average placebo result and the average painkiller result.
etc.

Variation of between two averages is only meaningful if you are comparing the groups. We are comparing individuals (uniques), not groups. So Lastly's point about traits having a large overlap between men and women is perfectly relavent to what we are talking about, while the difference between averages really doesn't mean much here.

To clarify what I was trying to say in the previous post, the statement that uniques are at the tails of distributions is missing something vital: no one is at the tails of all distributions and the most important ones, even for combat traits, aren't those that we tend to think of as defined by gender. For example, when looking at damage per hit, strength really isn't the most important factor. Yes, if you are stronger you can hit harder, but how and where you hit are going to be more important than how hard. As long as you hit hard enough, skill is going to be a bigger factor than physical strength in how much damage your hits do. The best fighter isn't the strongest one, but the one who knows how to best use his/her strength. Yes, it's more likely that that fighter is a male, since more males are interested in such activities than females are, but there is no reason that such a person wouldn't be female unless their society tried to stop females from fighting.

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 16:05

Re: Gender politics

names wrote:
chequers wrote:and yet, your decision that the sex ratio of uniques was out of balance is based strictly on our reality. who's to say whether or not any given species in crawl has the same ratios as we see in nature? maybe men naturally outnumber women in the crawl universe, and the previous balance of uniques reflected that.


Fisher, in fact. Fisher's principle is a classic and striking evolutionary model which explains why the observed sex ratio is very close to 1:1 in a great majority of animal species, including stuff like impala, where a small minority of males mate with most of the females in a harem arrangement, leaving most of the males to wander around without much if any contribution to the success of the species (this is my role in the human population)

The argument is that if raising male and female offspring costs the same amount* then there are evolutionary pressures towards births with a 1:1 sex ratio. Imagine the devs introduce goblins into the dungeon with 90% of the newborn baby goblins being male. Goblin parents with genes that favor female offspring have a higher reproductive fitness (you're more likely to have a grandchild if you have a daughter in a sea of sons than another son, and versa vice). Once the ratio approaches 1:1, the fitness advantage from having extra daughters vanishes to zero, so the equilibrium, called the evolutionary stable strategy is 1:1.

How does this account for all the useless male impala wandering the Serengeti? It's gambling. Females have relatively consistent fertility rates, but hooo man, if you have a particularly sexy son...so many grandkids. This buff buck's gonna spread your genes far and wide, mama.

* This provides an interesting explanation of the observed sex ratio in humans which is something like 1.06:1 M:F. Human parenting takes a long time. The cost of parenting is not just in gestation but raising your child. Sadly, male children die more frequently than females so the fitness cost of a male child is lower than a female child (there are probably some significant cultural factors, too, but these are harder to unravel). There's evolutionary pressure to equalize the total parental expenditure for each sex, so lower cost of a male birth -> more males are born.

The point is, if you're gonna introduce a fantasy race with some skewed sex ratio you'd better be ready to provide a compelling evolutionary argument or else you're destroying the Realism of Crawl :twisted:

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 16:50

Re: Gender politics

n1000: Excellent, and very interesting.

Sadly, does not help with getting the thread locked down. So it behooves to me to restore cosmic thread balance: Do you losers realise that both SomethingAwful *and* 4chan made less of a deal about the gender change?

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Post Friday, 10th June 2016, 16:56

Re: Gender politics

This looks like a thread that must now, tragically, come to an end.

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