Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Hrathen

Wow, was the "Discrimination Against Females in X-wing" thread deleted by FFG?

Recommended Posts

I don't see anything about the design of X-Wing to be discriminatory against a particular gender or group, in so far as my experience has been, but it is worth noting that there is a minor female presence.  This likely has more to do with the subculture of table top gaming and less to do with X-Wing in particular.

 

By contrast, our Ontario Regional tournament had 3 women in attendance, out of ~30 players, so 10% seems like a generous amount, based on what I hear, although I wish it were higher.

 

The bigger issue, gender notwithstanding, is how we, as a community, choose to recruit new players into the fold.  These games can only thrive if we warmly introduce new players in whenever we can.  When a prospect is looking over at the table, and you're trying to show off the game to them, it is easy to hype it up, but don't forget that not everyone is extroverted enough to approach strangers and interrupt their game to learn more about it.

 

Your conduct at the table can just as easily turn someone off, because in their mind, YOU are the potential opponents they will face if they decided to invest in the game and come out to the tournaments, game nights, etc.  If you cary on in a manner that could be construed as obnoxious, you could be scaring away new players before they even have a chance to hear you pitch the game.

 

My girlfriend would never saunter into a game store to see what's good, but when she saw the Core Set that I had bought 2 years ago when it came out, she was interested, so we played a couple of games and now she comes out to organized events more often than not.

 

She doesn't do amazingly well, but that's because she doesn't invest the same amount of time in studying the X-Wing meta to learn all the potential tactics to use and have used against you.  Having said that, she plays well, objectively , but when you put an intermediate player into the shark tank with the experts for a tournament, the overall relative skill is still going to be a deciding factor, and that's fine too.  Getting ruined by the pros can also be educational, IF the winners are winning graciously and offer some valuable feedback between matches.  She's taken home her fair share of prizes, and our stock of TIE Interceptors during the Kessel Run days was provided mostly on behalf of her playing skills in those events.

 

To her, if her opponent wants to throw a softball at her in a tournament to be chivalrous, it's their loss, literally, because she'll just take the win to the next round and keep flying.

 

What example does this set?  If your female significant other is even moderately interested in your table top gaming hobby, get them excited about X-Wing, and when they know what they're doing, get them to a tourney.  How you do that will relate to your own sales skills, but at the end of the day, this would be no different than me talking to a male friend and getting them to come out for a game night at the FLGS to try it on for size.

 

The approach should be the same.  It's not about selling it on how many other women are there for a meetup, because if that's the plan, and the current total of women present is zero, you'll never get your numbers up.  Forget the gender element and just make it about a social gathering.  A lot of players in my area are mature people that are just there for the fun of the game.  Casuals are casual, and tournaments bring out the play-to-win lists, but in juxtaposition to that, not the play-to-win attitude of being a jerk at all costs.  There is nothing about this environment that is inherently anti-women, unless someone wants to bring that in with them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That a certain issue in video gaming was brought up only meant that the thread was doa.

Oh God. I've had to get away from videogames and videogame forums because of 'that', and I don't want it ruining any of my other hobbies. If the OP of that was a troll, good riddance,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We've asked for the mods to be more active in the forums. If they've made the decision to stop that thread, they probably wanted to avoid it developing into something like that issue in video games.

 

If you call the cops, they'll come knocking. I don't mind too much - the discussion was interesting in concept, but I think a discussion on gender in gaming isn't the wisest thing to pursue at the moment. Too vulnerable to trolls.

Edited by bayruun

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Interesting tidbit in the Webmaster's post history ("More female friendly" topic from the Warhammer section) http://community.fantasyflightgames.com/index.php?/topic/124311-more-female-friendly/?p=1295461

 

"

Thank you to everyone who made the effort to calmly engage in collective conversation surrounding a topic that can be so divisive. I'm locking the thread simply as this complex issue won't be "solved" via discussion on an online forum. However, there are points of consideration in the above thread worth retaining.

 

FFG Webmaster

"

 

So it may have been locked due to other reasons than unpleasantness and Ribann.

 

 

Maybe a combination thereof, but Arista, the OP was banned and thus Ribann was re-banned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't see anything about the design of X-Wing to be discriminatory against a particular gender or group, in so far as my experience has been, but it is worth noting that there is a minor female presence.  This likely has more to do with the subculture of table top gaming and less to do with X-Wing in particular.

 

By contrast, our Ontario Regional tournament had 3 women in attendance, out of ~30 players, so 10% seems like a generous amount, based on what I hear, although I wish it were higher.

 

The bigger issue, gender notwithstanding, is how we, as a community, choose to recruit new players into the fold.  These games can only thrive if we warmly introduce new players in whenever we can.  When a prospect is looking over at the table, and you're trying to show off the game to them, it is easy to hype it up, but don't forget that not everyone is extroverted enough to approach strangers and interrupt their game to learn more about it.

 

Your conduct at the table can just as easily turn someone off, because in their mind, YOU are the potential opponents they will face if they decided to invest in the game and come out to the tournaments, game nights, etc.  If you cary on in a manner that could be construed as obnoxious, you could be scaring away new players before they even have a chance to hear you pitch the game.

 

My girlfriend would never saunter into a game store to see what's good, but when she saw the Core Set that I had bought 2 years ago when it came out, she was interested, so we played a couple of games and now she comes out to organized events more often than not.

 

She doesn't do amazingly well, but that's because she doesn't invest the same amount of time in studying the X-Wing meta to learn all the potential tactics to use and have used against you.  Having said that, she plays well, objectively , but when you put an intermediate player into the shark tank with the experts for a tournament, the overall relative skill is still going to be a deciding factor, and that's fine too.  Getting ruined by the pros can also be educational, IF the winners are winning graciously and offer some valuable feedback between matches.  She's taken home her fair share of prizes, and our stock of TIE Interceptors during the Kessel Run days was provided mostly on behalf of her playing skills in those events.

 

To her, if her opponent wants to throw a softball at her in a tournament to be chivalrous, it's their loss, literally, because she'll just take the win to the next round and keep flying.

 

What example does this set?  If your female significant other is even moderately interested in your table top gaming hobby, get them excited about X-Wing, and when they know what they're doing, get them to a tourney.  How you do that will relate to your own sales skills, but at the end of the day, this would be no different than me talking to a male friend and getting them to come out for a game night at the FLGS to try it on for size.

 

The approach should be the same.  It's not about selling it on how many other women are there for a meetup, because if that's the plan, and the current total of women present is zero, you'll never get your numbers up.  Forget the gender element and just make it about a social gathering.  A lot of players in my area are mature people that are just there for the fun of the game.  Casuals are casual, and tournaments bring out the play-to-win lists, but in juxtaposition to that, not the play-to-win attitude of being a jerk at all costs.  There is nothing about this environment that is inherently anti-women, unless someone wants to bring that in with them.

 

This 100%.  But then again, bringing our significant others into the fold isn't the problem.

 

When a man enters an establishment with the woman, the woman is less likely to be put down or mistreated.  When that woman enters the establishment alone, for the first time, it's a crapshoot.

 

I've seen store owners talk down to woman on several occasions.  I have a female friend that was ready to drop a couple hundred dollars on a minuatures game, but the store owner was a tool.  She was looking at the product line and the owner asked her if she needed any help.  She said she was interested in the product line and was trying to decide between a few products.  The guy said she wouldn't be interested in such a game because the rules would be over her head, and instead directed her towards pokemon cards and my little pony comics.

Another gal went to a card based competition at the same location.  She was treated very poorly by the other players.  They were making rude comments, sexual innuendos, and criticized lots of the plays she made.  She ended up winning and beat everyone there.  Some made excuses about how they let her win, others threw little tantrums, and 1 or 2 tried to rules lawyer out of the loss.  It was an all together unpleasent experience.  These behaviors were directed at her and her alone.

 

Not every place i like that, granted.  But enough are, that it does drive away possible new blood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@kmanweiss;

 

If we take for granted that toxic experiences in stores would be enough to drive anyone away, and assume an otherwise welcoming environment, the issue comes down to marketing.

 

What I mean by that is less about putting it on Fantasy Flight to make a game that "appeals to everyone", and more about the individual community's efforts to generate awareness for the game.

 

For the store-owner, how are they driving new traffic into the store?  Is their business model built around generating revenues from the bottomless pit of Magic releases and events?  If we take X-Wing as an example, how is the owner driving attendance to these events?  Are they even holding them, or otherwise interested in holding them?

 

Sometimes it takes people in the community to step up and do the organizing, which should be easy to coordinate with the business owner, since it would be a mutually beneficial arrangement.

 

Having said that, if you were tasked with bringing 5 new people to your next tournament, how would you get them there?  Not just in terms of giving them some ships and a crash course the night before, but building a genuine interest in the game so they could theoretically handle themselves at an intermediate level.

 

Who do you know in your sphere of influence that could do that?  Have you asked?  Do your peers even know that you enjoy throwing down with little plastic space ships at a local shop?  If your friends, co-workers, etc aren't even aware that this is a thing you do, then you've hit the first obstacle.  Nobody knows, so why would you expect them to be interested?

 

After that, I would say that the hardest part is undoing the preconceptions an individual might have about the table top gaming scene.  You've already got one thing that screams "nerd alert!", followed by the fact that's it's a "Star Wars" game, which has its own comparable baggage in the minds of others.

 

This is less about ignorance and open-mindedness and more about your own comfort level with discussing your hobbies with people that aren't into the tabletop gaming scene.  You need to communicate how much fun you're having without coming on too strong about it, and highlight the social aspects that fly in the face of what preconceptions exist out there.

 

At the local tournaments I go to in the Toronto area, I see a lot of familiar faces.  I wouldn't call us friends in the sense that I communicate with any of them outside of the event, but we're all acquainted enough with each other that it's nice to see them all out there.  Maybe this time out you're hoping to get pared with a certain individual because you want a run-back match after they tabled you 100-0 last time and now you're smarter and wiser for it.  Maybe it's the opposite and when the pairing's called out, you're lamenting the Gaming Gods for sticking you in first round with someone you can never beat.  The joys of pulling a Top 8 cut out of your butt at the last second with a risky move.  The between-match chats and the lunch breaks are always a good mingling time.

 

Remember too, even if you want to assume an older, established demographic of people that are 30+ years old, that could be your next professional contact right there; whether its a business-to-business thing, or your next job opportunity.  Networking, friends, is what I'm getting at.

 

It's all there, and if you notice, at no point does gender have to factor into any of this.  Sometimes it's hard to find a pleasant game group, and I recognize that I am perhaps very lucky to have access to one with a female presence, albeit a small one, but with all the resources at our disposal online, it can't be that difficult to sniff out a new group in your area if you live near a major metropolitan area, and are somewhat mobile.

 

Those last couple of points may not apply to all of you reading this, but there has to be enough out there, just on population density, that we can all find each other in better playing conditions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was able to read a little of that thread before going into work and I felt that the OP of that thread was hostile to anyone who commented. My wife plays this game and while she enjoys playing the game and everyone from the group we played the game with was polite, courteous, and competitive. While it may be something that she enjoys, it may not be for everyone.

Same thing goes for other games. I have no doubt in my mind that there are plenty of other games that became male dominated simply because the source material is something that women don't find interesting. You can't force gender less plastic space ships to be any more gender neutral than they already are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 You can't force gender less plastic space ships to be any more gender neutral than they already are.

Unless the characters they represent are male or female.

 

You're flying "Han Solo", not "YT-1300 with Pilot Skill 9".

 

There are some female pilots in X-Wing; Howlrunner, Jan, Ibitsam, etc, but none of these characters are recognizable to anyone that isn't deeply attuned to the Expanded Universe.  This is actually more of a feature of Star Wars in general, not "this" game in particular.  It's drawing it's theme and setting from a series of movies that largely phones it in with the female cast.

 

This could make it harder for a woman to relate to the theme, as it seems like it's just men in ships shooting other men in ships, but it is worth noting that the female pilots are just as useful in lists as the male counterparts.  How great is Howly?  Even outside of an Academy Swarm, she can boost the primary attack of anything you can have her keep up with.  She works well to make 2 Firesprays even more of a pain in the butt, and even more specific, if you want a "girl power" build, pairs nicely with Kath, who will soon herself be even more annoying when Mara Jade can ride shotgun.

 

This game better represents women in the fiction than the source material ever did, but damned if anybody outside of serious Star Wars fans would know.

 

Maybe FFG should focus on making more of the "Alternate Art" promo cards for the Tournament Kits feature the likes of Howlrunner, Jan, Kath.  They've already got Fel and Ten Numb as examples of headshots that aren't the popular characters from the movies, so it's time to get on it.

 

Also, is it safe to say it's only a matter of time before Juno Eclipse and "Rogue Shadow" show up?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@ ClearDave; Yeah, I can understand why a lack of female pilot names on the card make the ships more masculine, but think of all the generic ships in play. With 2 generic ships minimum out of the 12 current small base ships we have, there is plenty of ambiguity to go around. You make a good point though and I am sure future expansions will release female pilots for popular ships. Considering there are so many named pilots that have not been released yet that are male and the relatively young age of this game, all we have to do is wait and see.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

and I am sure future expansions will release female pilots for popular ships.

That all assumes that FFG is allowed to create then in the first place. With Disney/LFL you never know what the restrictions on new pilots may be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...