Will We Ever See A Shin Megami Tensei Game With A Female Lead?

By Spencer . June 14, 2013 . 3:00pm

Persona 3 Portable’s defining feature was the option to be a female protagonist and the always optimistic Maya Amano from Persona 2: Eternal Punishment was one of the “coolest” heroines in the series.

 

Atlus has made memorable characters in the Shin Megami Tensei universe, but the numbered Shin Megami Tensei games only have male leads.

 

When I spoke with Masayuki Doi, character designer on Shin Megami Tensei IV, we talked about the idea of having a female protagonist in a mainline Shin Megami Tensei game. “I like female protagonists,” Doi said. “It would be cool to have a female protagonist in the next SMT game.”

 

“However, there are traditionalists that see the series from the past to present and all of the protagonists have been male. To keep that tradition, there is feedback I’ve been hearing saying that if there is a new SMT title we should keep the tradition of having a male lead.”

 

We’ll have more from our interview with Masayuki Doi on Siliconera soon.

 


Read more stories about & on Siliconera.

  • FullMetalAlcopop

    If there is, there is. If there isn’t, there isn’t. I seriously doubt that the defining feature of the series for many if any players is a male lead.

  • ToshiChan

    It is probably because predominantly their fan base is still male, and when you’re trying to immerse yourself into a character you develop with your own choices, it’s hard for a lot of guys to role play the other gender and immerse themselves I suppose.

    Though I think a female MC would be cool and fun to play as.

    • PersonaBull

      That failure for males to be able to immerse themselves in a character simply because they are female is a notion that makes me pretty uncomfortable. I once showed a coworker Odin Sphere, and his immediate reaction to seeing Gwendolyn was “nahhh dude I can’t play as no girl.” He didn’t bother to see if he even could relate to the character. My question to these men, why can’t men relate to women characters, but women are expected and even encouraged to continue relating to male characters?

      More often than not, a character’s sex or gender has little to no bearing on whether or not I can relate to that character. I support the notion that my fellow men gamers can rise past this “traditional” notion being supported by SMT and plenty of other game series.

      • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

        Relate is different to projection.

        Im glad they are not making a FeMC because of tradition, im tired of hearing “The MC should have a personality” and is because of tradition that the MCs are still SP. I dont want to relate to characters i want to become them and roleplay as such and to properly project myself the MC must be silent AND be of my gender.

        Option is good but then again Kaneko envisioned the series in certain way and if its male then so be it, no matter how much it would make sense to add a female option the vision of its creator should be respected.

      • ToshiChan

        I believe that someday we can, because gender aside, it’s the core personality of a character that draws people. I just feel at this given moment in time, there’s too much chauvinism in gamer mentality (argue what you will, but it’s noticeable) for it to happen any time soon.

    • Asura

      It’s hard for guys only as long as guys like you continue to perpetuate the myth that it’s hard for guys.

      • ToshiChan

        Is it a myth though? It can be seen easily that there are many guys who are guilty of this. Just looking at P3P as an example, I know plenty of guys who refused to play the FemMC simply based on the idea that they didn’t want to start relationships with Akihiko and the other male cast.

        It’s not something I’m pleased with but I do point out it is a reality.

  • Gyro Zeppeli

    If… should sorta count.

    • CirnoTheStrongest

      Always forgotten…

    • Chiupon

      Tammy is even canon!

  • D. Changstein

    Traditionalists will worry? What the hell kind of talk is that? I think it would break their hearts if the protagonist actually engages in a homosexual relationship if they can’t even handle a female option.

    • Skye Johnson

      Haha, I wonder how they handled Tatsuya and Jun in P2 then.

  • Go2hell66

    Dont let anita sarkeesian see this article

    • puchinri

      Why not? She’d probably agree with Doi~. And having an articulate, accurate point to make. Not that some people would see it that way. x’D

      • Go2hell66

        My comment got deleted? I cant even guess which rule i broke?

        • M’iau M’iaut

          Thinking or reading before responding, perhaps? That isn’t a picture of Anita. Or that I was trying to keep the thread from turning into an Anita hate spam fest?

      • supervamp

        That and she’d start some witch hunt for atlus with all her “followers” backing her up

        • puchinri

          Hardly. She hasn’t started any witch hunts as far as I’ve seen.

          • supervamp

            She’s clearly started something, i can’t even find any other feministic views on games besides hers nowadays. It feels very cultish to me.

          • puchinri

            Are you sure? Because I stumble upon quite a few without even having to look, and if I do actually go looking, it’s pretty easy to find them.

          • supervamp

            When i google anything on feminist and gaming it’s her for the first few pages of google. She’s way too big for what she is and she’s become the”voice of female gamers” without anyone voting her in.

          • puchinri

            That probably has more to do with how Google works and such than anything about her. Although a lot of Anita’s stuff pops up, it’s not the only stuff (just typing in those two words).

            Also try adding blog in there, because that’s where a lot of the better resources are going to come from.

          • supervamp

            I have added blog into and she and pages about her follows up i know its not the only stuff when you have to go through 3 pages of google just to get to another female game blogger there’s a problem

          • puchinri

            She’s only one of the top three sites (and the second is one I visit frequently), and another problem might be the lack of feminists sites/blogs dedicated wholly/mainly to gaming (because I was going to suggest some other things, but they’re not as focused on it as she is).

            You can also consider going outside of google though. I don’t use it for a main search engine for many a reason (some are privacy reasons, others are just because).

            There’s also a few tumblr pages you might want to search from that go to communities or specific blogs about the issue.

          • supervamp

            Google is the only search engine i use because it’s the only search engine i find decent.

        • CirnoLakes

          You really don’t know much about Anita Sarkeesian, do you?

          Even on her Kickstarter, nobody is there blindly following or agreeing with anything she said. If you’ve ever read the backer-only comments, you’ll see a big argument early on about the whole “man with tits” and why or why they might not agree with Anita. The people who supported her Kickstarter don’t even agree with her on everything or much less blindly follow her opinions.

          Furthermore, no witch hunts have been had about anything. If anyone has been witch hunted, it has been Anita and her fans.

          It is so sad that all it took was a regular feminist like Anita attempting a project like this to become a meme of hatred and misrepresentation that is had.

          There’s a rule about how mention of feminism creates reactions that justify feminism. It is there for a reason.

          • Flandre Scarlet

            If only modern feminism was actually feminism and not just reversing the situation and creating a whole lot of other problems in the process via playing the shame game.

          • CirnoLakes

            “If only modern feminism was actually feminism”
            It is.

          • supervamp

            No she is not a regular feminist, regular feminist don’t have a narrow view of the world nor do they not understand that their opinion isn’t a fact.
            Regular feminist fight for a real cause and actually try to help women’s lives. She’s nothing more then a vocal minority that screams as loud as it wants to be heard.

  • HPN

    Yuri Persona would sell like hot pants… just sayin. ^^

    • Metalsnakezero

      You know, that can work as long as they address the issues of gay relationships in a very interesting way. This is the Shin Megami Tensei series where perspective on everything is gray.

    • LynxAmali

      You don’t play 3 or 4?
      Mitsuru, Yukari, FeMC, Chie and Yukiko all had subtext that you didn’t even need goggles to see.

      EDIT:
      Really? I got downvoted for saying this?

      • CirnoTheStrongest

        Answer ruined 3, but P3P gave us Aigis!

        And, ChiexYukiko was shipped even harder in P4 Arena as far as i’ve been

        • Skye Johnson

          I’m kind of confused…How did P3P give us Aigis? She was always there in the first place, as was her social link prior to P3P. The Aeon social link came with FES.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            Did you do the AIgis route with the FemC? It was practically a romance route only really not being ‘officially’ recognized by the system. I was just saying we were given that route as well.

            That previous post was entirely about yuri in the Persona 3/4 games. In the Answer they for some unknown senseless reason made Yukari the canon love interest (Aigis would have fit 1000x better, as she basically took that spot on the original P3 no problem, and since Aigis is the one making every effort to reclaim Minato), thus destroying everything that had been built up between Yukari and Mitsuru.

            Persona 4 gave us ChiexYukiko. And, unless you decided to romance one/both of them, nothing really managed to make that seem any less significant. And Persona 4 Arena the canon sequel to Persona 4 pushes this even harder. Well, as far as I’ve seen anyway having played the Chie path as far as it can go without playing any others yet. I will be working on other paths soon enough and then can have a more informed opinion on things.

      • Flandre Scarlet

        Seem to be a few disgruntled folks out there who really hate yuri or subtext. I’m not sure why, but I’m sure any reason I list will be wrong.

        • MrSirFeatherFang

          yuri is good.
          now traps leave you questioning you’re humanity!!!

          • M’iau M’iaut

            tl;dr — Feather thought she was one darn hot chick — until he followed her into the men’s bathroom.

          • MrSirFeatherFang

            no worries, I always carry around a bucket of cold water just in case I can turn traps into actual girls!
            However… if that doesn’t work… I have to make a decision.
            He looks like a girl, he likes me, but what do I do? Do I like this guy who’s actually dressed as a girl? Is it all a trap? One thing’s for sure… he pretty damn cute.
            I’ve been reading too many trap (sfw) manga but I don’t know if I’ll ever cross beyond the bounds :(
            I must meditate… unless Ishaan or you has advice for me :D

      • M’iau M’iaut

        Heck with Mits it wasn’t even subtext.

  • http://www.thejaystack.com/ Jon Stachewicz

    FemC was a step in the right direction, but I feel like it was ultimately misguided in its execution. The menu design, narrative and music in vanilla Persona 3 was great without having any sort of gender alignment, but for her path it was like ‘everything’s pink and the music is poppier with lyrics about princesses and girlfriends because girl’, which seemed kind of misogynistic and too closely adhering to a strict gender binary.

    Even Animal Crossing: New Leaf does this with its character creation, where cool = guy and cute = girl, either due to ignorance or just not putting much thought into the differences(or lack thereof) of male and female protagonists.

    • Arizato

      I loved the female’s music and I am a 21 year old male. I thought the FeMC music was really soothing and just all around awesome. Especially the theme in school: “Time”.

      • http://www.thejaystack.com/ Jon Stachewicz

        Oh I loved the music too, Way of Life is among my favorite Megaten songs, period. I’m just saying that a lot of the music and menu design (as well as narrative changes) focused too heavily on ‘this story is different because girl character’ whereas they had more of an air of gender neutrality for MC’s path

        • supervamp

          The path was different for her because it was a different character.I don’t see how that could be seen as misogynistic.
          Fact is her route was way more fun then his it’s probably because they were allowed to improve on interaction with other characters.Also she was supposed to be a more upbeat happier version of her “twin” so of course things would more upbeat and brighter in her route. That and the color scheme is something we do with babies anyways.

    • Chiupon

      You’re kind of right, but kind of wroooong. The “cute” aesthetic suited the character herself. Minato’s design was definitely sleek and cool and thusly the blue/cool color scheme suited him very well; FeMc on the other hand was definitely girly and cute and her outfit choice and dialogue options reflected that. Fuuka wasn’t traditionally girly, and neither is chie. They don’t streamline the gender stereotypes — in fact, chie’s lack of traditionally female appeal next to yukiko who is in all senses traditionally female is an important aspect of her character; same with Kanji. Persona is definitely not the game to raise this argument for.

      • puchinri

        That’s a good point you made, but I suppose the problem would go back to the fact that they made their female lead very feminine instead of gender neutral (sleek and cool) like their male lead.

        I think P4 handled some cool things in interesting ways, but it wasn’t perfect – at the same time, it’s hard to be in a game like Persona (and a shame we lost some of that impact in the West).

        • ChiffonCake

          I actually preferred FeMC BECAUSE she was more feminine and extroverted and such… those things actually gave her a perceivable personality, even with the choices. Looking back, male MC was really boring.

          Though I suppose my problem here is less with the protag’s gender and more with how personalityless they usually are, with feMC being an exception to that… eh.

          • puchinri

            He did get called boring a lot. I can see why to a point, but at the same time, I think fandom (art and writing-wise) tends to bring out more personality in him, so I feel like that was a problem with Atlus handling him (and I guess if the only way they knew how to give character to the female lead was give her strong, feminine traits, that’s another problem with them).

            It’s hard to balance the lack of personality and establishing one with letting the players become the character. What I like about P4 is how I feel I can relate to/become MC, but at the same time, I feel he has a distinct character there and I’m just guiding him to which I feel is more him (and the one I’d prefer).

            But, this conversation now makes me wonder about P5 and how they’ll handle their MC there (as far as established/lack thereof personality and immersion).

          • http://www.thejaystack.com/ Jon Stachewicz

            If you finished the game you’d understand why he was more or less supposed to be a blank slate though

    • puchinri

      Good points. I kind of agree. I liked having more music, but that everything had to make this gendered shift was off-putting (and it could be construed as condescending I suppose).

      I do kind of like how AC:NL handles gender. It’s a lot more gender fluid than any of the other titles (and I like how they pull back and let girls define themselves as cool and guys as cute if they like). I do hope the series gets more progressive in that regard too (and that Ninty as a whole adapts that).

  • Tom_Phoenix

    I don’t think an “appeal to tradition” is a justified argument against having a female lead in an SMT game.

    There is nothing about the core SMT series that necessitates a male lead; most of the themes these games tend to cover have little or nothing to do with the MC’s gender. Giving the player a gender choice would not have any (major) influence on the games, since the MC’s gender is (almost) always completely unimportant to the overall plot.

    A tradition shouldn’t exist for its own sake; there has to be a justified, logical reason as to why things should be kept the way they are or else there is no point in maintaining it. In this particular case, I don’t feel there is such a reason (or, at the very least, those opposing the notion of a female MC have failed to provide one), so a gender option should definitely be considered for future titles.

    • Highasthesky

      But then again, if this is the case, why need a female lead?

      • Wtv

        Well, why not? It makes more sense than choose one gender only for not reason at all.

      • Tom_Phoenix

        Beacuse it’s an easy way to give players more choice. Some people prefer female leads and some people just like having the option.

        • Highasthesky

          Personal preference huh? that’s fine i guess, IMO it’s a pointless add-on but i’m not against the idea.

      • Pockystix

        I always wonder why devs like this think adding the option would go against the supposed ‘core’ audience.

        Honestly, what SMT fan would not buy the game, just because they added the option to play a female character.

        it’s just the devs making excuses for not wanting to do the little bit of effort it would’ve taken to add the option.

        • Skye Johnson

          The female character, in fact, was one of the draws to Persona 3 Portable. Not a technical SMT game, but still in the Atlus family. It made the game even more replayable just to play both sides.

          They could also just have a choice like the new Fire Emblem did. The dialogue really didn’t change much, if at all; just the marriage choices, and SMT isn’t like that.

      • PersonaBull

        Representation. Why aren’t women allowed to be seen as the main characters, besides for the sake of saving “tradition?”

        • Highasthesky

          “Why aren’t women allowed to be seen as the main characters” They’re many games with female leads, so that’s clearly not the problem. Why does this specific game series need a female lead?.

          • PersonaBull

            As stated earlier, there’s literally no reason not to other than outright sexism under the guise of “tradition.” It’s not about inserting women where they “don’t need to be” (according to some people) but rather doing away with old and tired traditional thinking that does nothing but ostracize a large portion of gamers worldwide. Rather than continuing to ask “why does this specific game series need a female lead?” why don’t you ask yourself “Why does this specific game series need a male lead?”

          • Highasthesky

            Simple,because the person who envisioned the story envisioned a male protagonist. You seem to forget that games tell a story, this story is the vision of the one who writes it. What is with this mentality that males as protagonist is now sexist, feminism and equality are two very different things. What are you trying to achieve?

          • PersonaBull

            Are you joking this was already covered: “There is nothing about the core SMT series that necessitates a male
            lead; most of the themes these games tend to cover have little or
            nothing to do with the MC’s gender. Giving the player a gender choice
            would not have any (major) influence on the games, since the MC’s gender
            is (almost) always completely unimportant to the overall plot.”

            But yes let’s go down the road of “what you’re asking is unreasonable and an absurd mentality,” attacking my sanity on the subject rather than the sanity of the tradition being upheld by SMT and many series like it. What exactly are you trying to achieve by playing devil’s advocate?

          • Highasthesky

            Did you even read my previous comment? i mentioned nothing of a personality because it didn’t matter, the creator envisioned a male of a specific design, and personality or no that was the story creators VISION. Like i said before they’re many games with female leads, in many the female lead isn’t even required and could have easily been a man, should we now petition to get a Pokemon like, male and female option on all games like this? Samus is a prime example could have easily been rewritten as a man, sure the creator had a vision but i find it very sexist that there wasn’t a male option. Do you see how stupid that sounds?

          • Bakuryukun

            There doesn’t HAVE to be male and female selections for every game. But games SHOULD feel that they can have either freely, and from the sounds of this interview, that is absolutely not the case here. He even says he’d LIKE to see it, but can’t because people have preconceived notions about the game having a male protagonist, THIS is the problem, not every game not having gender options.

          • Sheep

            “However, there are traditionalists that see the series from the past to present and all of the protagonists have been male. To keep that tradition, there is feedback I’ve been hearing saying that if there is a new SMT title we should keep the tradition of having a male lead.”

            Since you thought him saying both sides of the “argument” was him saying he won’t do it because of what fans think.

            Not sure if Doi really designs the story in this case either, the Maniax team has said that “some of us would be interested in seeing a female protagonist in SMT, others feel the games are more suited toward a male protagonist”(paraphrased)

            He does have a fair hand in it, I suppose.

          • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

            Strawman argument. Metroid 1 broke new ground by playing with its’ audience’s expectations, and then finally revealing a female protagonist, which was a VERY rare instance at the time.

            You’re not very good at making a convincing point, are you?

          • Bakuryukun

            Right so…the person who envisioned the original game chose to have a male protagonist and therefore EVERY protagonist in the series should be male from now until the end of time? Well that sure sounds….boring and stagnant.

      • Bakuryukun

        Because variety is good?

      • Sardorim

        Fire Emblem Awakening’s FeMU was handled very well, especially if you marry Chrom. Many that have played Awakening say FeMU married to Chrom is the best story experience for the game and is enhanced further in the DLC for many reasons.

        • http://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?/topic/25050-farm-mapping-contest/#entry239430 Chaos17

          Oh ? which DLC ?

    • Guest

      1000%. Quite frankly it is awful reasoning they’ve given and made worse by how… …hmm, how almost INCONSEQUENTIAL it is to the game overall given you have a silent protagonist than a really active and self-representative one (he’s more of a face and avatar for “you” than an actual character…. a point I feel becomes somewhat lost when you have a silent protagonist because I find they seem more “submissive” than “representative” since they do whatever is told of them and you can’t really object).

      Japan is sort of strange about tradition though… I hope this changes nonetheless.

  • CirnoTheStrongest

    We can always hope for P5 to rectify this…

    • Mordina

      Oh, I truly hope so!

    • AkuLord3

      P3P and P2 Eternal Punishment say hi (and sorta P3FES Answer in a way). They more mean the main series, not Persona

      • CirnoTheStrongest

        P3P was a horrible attempt (and compeltely not canon). P2 EP was a good one (though, again, i think it wasn’t canon, I can’t really remember). I’m just saying that since Megaten is pretty much avoiding this, we’re gonna have to hope for P5 to remedy it.

        • Herok♞

          P2 EP is canon

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            Oh okay. It’s been many years since I played that one, so I couldn’t really remember.

          • Herok♞

            No problem.

        • LynxAmali

          -P3P was a horrible attempt (and completely not canon)

          How…the hell was P3P a horrible attempt? No, seriously. I had more fun with that route than the Male route because of the fact that it was a different experience and Minako was really likable.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            It just felt really forced to me. Like, The game was telling me “Here’s your FemC”
            I can’t explain it very well. Aigis’ route was a great addition though!

  • Roberto Sáinz

    Persona 3 Portable has a female lead. Just saying.

    • Manny Being Manny

      Persona isn’t officially part of the Megaten series, it was only branded that way for US release to make it more identifiable.

  • Manny Being Manny

    Not as long as the Megaten character designs aren’t drawn in a moe way.

  • Hours

    “Tradition”? More like complacency.

  • Mordina

    I really wish to see more female protoganists in games. Persona 3 Portable was my first Atlus game and I truly loved being able to play as a female. I admit that being able to play as a female is a big reason for me to buy a game. I hope they want my money again.

    • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

      Well, Super Robot Taisen games have a lot of female leads. Recent example, in OGs2 you can either take the Lune route (female character) or the Masaki route (male character).

  • https://twitter.com/RaiohV Raioh

    I wish people wouldn’t give a crap about the gender of any character to begin with. I could care less what gender the person I’m playing as has, as long as the world and story engages me, just saying.

    • Ereek

      It matters to me in games where roleplaying is a big part, like SMT, or where the hero is supposed to be “you.” When the character is core developed and has a personality, fine, I don’t care about the sex.

      • https://twitter.com/RaiohV Raioh

        I get the idea of self-insert, but while it surely wouldn’t be too much of a task to add sex choice(probably), I don’t think it’s ultimately necessary. I’m not telling everybody to do the same, but it’s not hard to come up with a personality and story for the silent protag and just imagine you play as him/her, like you do with most RPG’s, and not as “you”. It’s fun~

        I hope I’m not coming off as arrogant or so, since the majority of MC’s are male. I feel about it this way generally, ignoring the gender. If I still do, I’m terribly sorry *bows*

    • Muddied_Waters

      If it doesn’t matter to you, then why would it bother you if there were options for other people for whom it *is* important? I’ve seen that being able to pick a specific gender does seem to be important to some. Instead of saying ‘well I don’t care, so you shouldn’t complain either’, why not have more options to make a larger amount of people happy? I fail to see the harm of doing so.

      • https://twitter.com/RaiohV Raioh

        Where did I say it would bother me if there were options? Please don’t put words in my mouth. I welcome it if it’s there, but I’m tired of people begging for it in every game. It might be possible, maybe even quite easy, but it is in no way necessary and shouldn’t be forced down every developers throats like mad. I would rather just enjoy the game for what it is instead of knowing if my char has a penis or boobs, or both.

        I like jumping around in my games, but I’m not asking for every developer to add a jump function. Priorities of people became so twisted over the years it makes me sad.

        Also, I’m sorry this comment sounds so aggressive.

        • Muddied_Waters

          Sorry if I put words in your mouth, but the whole ‘I wish people wouldn’t give a crap’ just sounded like you were shutting down arguments from people who want more options in their choice of who they play as.

          I don’t think it’s necessary in every game either, especially games where the lead is specific in character and personality and tied in a specific way to the story (just off the top of my head, say Professor Layton, Liberation Maiden, etc.) but games where the character is more of a blank slate and personality is more based on player choices, I feel like there is little harm in adding more choices. It may be some more work for developers, but at the end of the day, it may also result in more sales.

          I’m sure some people complain about lack of choices just to complain, but for the most part I don’t see it as twisted priorities. In your example, jumping is a feature you like, which is fine. for some people who are unhappy with their lack of choices, though, it’s not just about a lack of a feature, it’s about a lack of representation. Maybe they really want to play as a character they can more strongly identify with. It’s not important for everyone, but for some people it is, especially if they’re a minority group and always told well, too bad, suck it up and go with what the majority prefers.

  • AdhesiveBoy

    Well that’s a shitty reason.

  • Flandre Scarlet

    Not surprised. As a fair supporter of traditionalism in certain areas, I can sort of sympathize.

    Ha, downvotes out the butt for saying I can sympathize with a developer. You guys are priceless.

    • Asura

      Priceless to be so butthurt for mere downvotes. Get over it.

  • ragingmerifes

    Traditionalist fans of Megaten? No, it must be your imagination.

  • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

    You know, they could always go for giving you both a male and female option. I mean, if the protagonist is just a silent character then I guess customization would do no harm (look at Pokemon X & Y. They’re finally letting you pick your own hair colour and skin colour).

  • Chiupon

    Seeing as I wouldn’t play the main SMT games, male or female, I don’t see a problem with this?

    Like, all of the other games under the SMT brand consistently display strong female leads; Maya was a protagonist before it was even commonplace for females to be lead characters. They’re highly innovative in these regards, so if they want to keep one series with a male protagonist, they might as well — they’ve never done any harm to a female image in anything else. Pretty sure more males play main SMT games than Persona, anyways — Now, if it was Persona they were keeping with a male protag, it’d be weird (not out of line, though).

  • harmonyworld

    Must fight….feminist….self…..ghaaaa….must not….make argument….Phew~

    • puchinri

      Don’t fight it, you know you wanna argue. >’D
      Then again, you are on a gaming site. Imagine all the downvotes you’ll get for being open-minded. Or do we call it “PC” still?

  • Spatulising

    It’s a pretty bad justification but I never really saw why it should matter what the lead even is to begin with, male female or whatever. And this is coming from a female

  • DesmaX

    Guess having an option would be cool, especially since gender is irrelevant in SMT.

    But i like male leads more, its easier for me to “connect” to the world like that

    • Landale

      They could very easily make a gender choice matter in SMT, and I’m rather surprised that so far for the most part a character’s gender hasn’t typically mattered. Given the large number of demons in the series that should be more or less of a threat to any given gender, either because they just don’t care about one or the other or because their powers are oriented toward one or the other, it could make sections easier or harder based on that.

      • DesmaX

        Let’s memember that Atlus in on a budget, and shoudn’t waste money on stuff like that.

        Making a 3D model and changing “he” to “she” isn’t that hard. Making a new experience, like you said…

        P3P only had the female path because it was the third time they were releasing the same game. They had to come up with something to make people buy it again

        • Herok♞

          well they originally planned for the basic game to have both genders and it had to be cut at some point due to time. since it was planned for P3 that is the reason why P4G didin’t have a choice it was planned for the character to be male, with no plans for both genders.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            As I recall, it was originally planned for the MC to be female period. I don’t think there was supposed to be any choice.

          • Herok♞

            which game are you referring to? in P4 it was always male. For Persona 3 it was both then one got cut which was female, P2 EP shows that if they had wanted a female protag they would have just used that one.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            I’m talking about P3. It’s been a while obviously, but I remember reading that the MC’s design was originally female, but then they changed their minds (likely because of “tradition”)

          • Herok♞

            Persona has no tradition once again Maya proves they have no problem with Female main characters and then you have the answer with Aigis.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            Persona is still part of the Megaten series, and when P3 was releasing they likely had no idea how much Persona 3 would give the fanbase a huge boost, so they were still basically dealing with the same fans as the Megaten main series. So, that “tradition” was still there. Even with what EP did. Though EP wasn’t really its own game exactly.

          • Herok♞

            Persona is only Megaten outside of japan and yes it has the same fans but the tradition has only been brought up today and it is for SMT games not the spinoffs because they are spinoffs. plus if tradition is broken then its no longer tradition, even if there was a tradition it would have been done away with, with P2 EP and P2 EP is its own game it was able stand alone when released as a PS1 game back in the day and the story still works even if you haven’t played IS, heck I would say its more of its own thing then IS since that one leaves a huge hole open for EP.

          • LightZero

            No Persona is apart of megaten Japan and everywhere else. It’s apart of the Megami Tensei multiverse. It just not a SMT game unlike SMT1, 2, 3 (Nocturne), SJ, if, and 4.

          • Herok♞

            persona is a spinoff so its not technically apart of the Megaten mutilverse.

          • Shinra

            I think Atlus even made a chart of how the series is connected when Nocturne came out:

          • Herok♞

            do those different colored mean anything?

          • Shinra

            I’m not sure, but I think its to indicate how each sub-series connect one another, like how SMT if… its supposed to be a prequel of sorts to Persona.

          • Herok♞

            right because if main character becomes a small plot character for P1 and P2

          • Ni

            Persona was never a Megaten game. First it was Megami Ibunroku Persona then just Persona but never a Megami Tensei

          • LightZero

            Megami Ibunroku is what used for new spin-offs. Devil Survivor 1 also had that. However, Persona does fit under the megaten umbrella. Technically SMT is a spin-off MT. Persona is a spin-off of SMT.

          • Ni

            that’s what I’m trying to say Persona is a spin-off not a main line SMT game.
            Yeah, SMT would be a new take on the Megami Tensei elements That’s why they use Shin (but we could see it as a reboot too because of the word play) as True and turned Shin in the main line rpg series. but yeah people could call SMT a “Spin-off” of Megaten

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            I’m saying this has nothing to do with “tradition”, and more to do with them feeling that male gamers (the majority of the audience that buys their games over there) who were fans of the Megaten series didn’t want to play as a female. But Persona 3 garnered its own fanbase ontop of the normal Megaten fanbase, which changed things for Persona. But, before Persona 3 came out, they likely had no clue it would expand things that much.

            Also, if I recall correctly, P3P didn’t sell nearly as well in Japan as it did outside of Japan. Which also shows a larger discrepancy between fanbases. But, P3P also basically neglected content to have a FemC. The Megaten games would have no reason to have a loss in content over having a small appearance swap and changing around pronouns. Persona games have that dating sim stuff and whatnot, and yuri’s still pretty niche so they obviously changed more than just pronouns and appearances of the FemC.

            But Megaten’s are different. They’re devoid of anything that would require major reworking.

          • Herok♞

            you idea here is based completely on assumptions, there is a difference between not wanting to play as a female and not wanting to buy the game again to play as the female.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            Yeah, but that was only a small side-track about P3P, and the ‘assumptions’ are pretty strongly supported by how the Japanese market tends to work.

            Also, Japan got the same P3 games as we did, yet P3P did much better over here. That DOES show a difference between the fanbases.

          • Herok♞

            So your making the argument exclusively, it did better in US because the Japanese don’t want to play as a girl, while ignoring all other possible factors that can lead to differences in sales?

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            No, it did better because people in the US and other “western” territories wanted to play as a FemC more.

          • Herok♞

            That is a stupid and baseless argument, I had a PSP and a PS2 so I could buy any version of Persona 3. I bought P3P because I wanted to play the game when I am outside my home(and it came with a nice hat) and I could care less that FeMC is in it since I played as Minato anyway, yet I am still apart of “those better sales”.Can you prove all the people who bought P3P wanted to play as the FeMC instead of wanting to take the game on the go, wanting to play with the more streamlined approach, or the extra new game plus dungeon, additional difficulty settings or just not being able to find a ps2 copy,etc as you claim? I am pretty sure you can’t. I am not saying no one bought it to play as the FeMC because people did for various reasons whether those reasons be they are female and wanted a female protagonist or they wanted to play the game again with a new protag but want I am saying is you are making a flawed argument based exclusively on assumptions.

            Also where did you get the sales figures in the first place? I find it impossible to believe that a psp game would do better in the US and other western territories then Japan especially something as niche as Persona.

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            “That is a stupid and baseless argument, I had a PSP and a PS2 so I could buy any version of Persona 3″
            Same with Japan. There was no different situation between Japan and elsewhere, excepting that the PSP was much more popular in Japan than elsewhere. Which should have meant the game would have sold better there for sure.

          • Herok♞

            So you don’t have a response to what I said, because you don’t refute my points and you don’t provide the source of your sales number, you just apply one persons situation to an entire region(you imply everyone in Japan had both a PS2 and PSP), you just say the game should have done better in Japan for sure. Where are the sales numbers to show it did worse in Japan, heck where are your vaild points in the first place and no in your head does not count as a source.

          • DesmaX

            Oh, I didn’t know that, cool. But still, they had to put something inP3p to make it worth it to release a third time. They woudn’t do it normally (You know,.budget, time, that kinda stiff)

          • DesmaX

            Ps: Im typing on a phone, so please dont mind the errors

        • puchinri

          Waste money on stuff like what. . .? Gender options? Or a more complex system (due to gender options)? Because neither of those would be a waste.

          • DesmaX

            Im talking about make it more complex than a model swap.

            And, would it sell more copies to justfy the extra effort? For SMT, just changing the model is good enough

          • puchinri

            Ahhh. If it’s more complex than a model swap but within mechanics and accurate to the lore that they somewhat reference anyway, I think it’d be a cool addition.

            Honestly, I don’t think they’d even need to change the model. They’d just need a very androgynous looking character.

        • Landale

          It doesn’t really need to be a new experience, not completely anyway. It could be as simple as things like Succubi and Incubi, for example, being more of a threat, or more likely to join, one gender over the other.

          • DesmaX

            Hey, that sounds linda cool.

            But it would need the gender option before doing that

  • Göran Isacson

    I’m just wondering what there is about mainline Shin Megami Tensei games that even necessitates having a protagonist that’s locked to one gender. Like… the protagonist of Nocturne could have been a girl just as well as a boy. If they have the option to give players the choice, why not take it?

    • CirnoTheStrongest

      There really hasn’t been a reason.

  • Shane Guidaboni

    Let’s just make characters seem androgynous and genderless and call it a day because I’m getting tired of these arguments. Personally, I don’t care what gender I play as. A game is fun because it’s fun, not because I’m playing as a male or a female. Want to make your lead a female? That’s fine with me, as long as the game remains fun.

  • puchinri

    I think if they at least offered an option more often in other/related titles (like in the Persona-verse and whatever else), it would be fine if they wanted to stick to tradition, but given how rare even that is, it’d be nice to see a female lead in SMT (and in general in more of the related titles).

    Yay, Doi~. I’m glad it sounds cool to him at least and he’d be up for it. I think he’d design a stellar lady lead too.

    Also, this is a good parallel to the Atelier thing a bit. In the Atelier games, you’re playing a character; but in SMT (and Persona), you are the character, so for there to be a defined gender and not have an option doesn’t hold up as well.

    • SerendipityX

      Its funny you mention the Atelier series since they recently added a male MC and everyone (barring a few people) was completely okay with it. Mention a FEMC in traditional male-onlyMC game…

      We get some cut-throat reactions. ;_;

      • Zharkiel

        Atelier Iris had male protagonists
        Mana Khemia had male protagonists
        Not everyone is happy with Logy’s gameplay being more action-y rather than alchemy hijinks.

        You might want to do some research.

        • puchinri

          The series started off with only female protagonists and carried that tradition for a while, broke it and then returned to it.

          There’s a large majority of female-lead Atelier games (and with no male option) than there are male-lead (option or no). Sadly, it’s also one of the only examples in the industry as a whole (regardless of region even), so it’s a very funny situation.

          I don’t think SerendipitiyX needed any research (I know for a fact that they knows what they’re talking about).

          • MrSirFeatherFang

            http://sadpanda.us/images/1668787-0A1ZBY5.jpg
            Are you talking about mai waifus?
            Also I had no clue @SerendipityX:disqus was a girl O_o

          • puchinri

            Our waifus, you mean? Cuz yes I am~!
            Haha, I felt like that conversation/subject came up before and I heard that, but I could be wrong, so I shall edit my comment~! Thank you for that. >u<

          • Solomon_Kano

            Yep. Seren’s a girl.

          • MrSirFeatherFang

            welp, that explains why she was excited about that shoujo manga being reprinted. although it got me interested in it too lol

          • SerendipityX

            I get that a lot. XD

        • http://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?/topic/25050-farm-mapping-contest/#entry239430 Chaos17

          You also need to do some research…
          Atelier Iris 2 > you play also a female protagonist (brother & sister where you change often with you play during the game.

          Mana khemia 2 : from the beginning you can choose if you want to play male or female.

          Persona 3 (PSP) you can choose to play a female or a male too.

      • puchinri

        Haha, I brought it up specifically because of the convo happening in that thread/article. The parallels and timing are golden.

      • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

        I think is because people are relating it a bit to the iris series or mana khemia series that also had male leads (and they are even giving away mana khemia with Escha&Logy). Is not like is the first time a male lead appears in the atelier franchise

        • MrSirFeatherFang

          What did you think when WA3 had a female protagonist? :D

          • CirnoTheStrongest

            Virginia is still my favorite WA character of all time~

          • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

            She is awesome :3

          • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

            I admit it was weird at the beginning, but it was fun, probably was the first game with a female “lead”, with personality and all i played, tho, all the party felt like MCs but she was the leader of their group xD… so is a weird MC-ish style lol.

            Also, it being WA makes me automatically LIKE IT TOO MUCH

  • Zharkiel

    Did gaming journalists woke up one day and decided to simultaneously bombard us with feminist propaganda on every gaming news site? I come here to play games, learn about future games and oogle at the stuff we might never get (Hi Sen no Kiseki). I don’t give 2 flying f’s if X group feels they need more representation in videogames, if they think they’re under-represented they can always form their own studios and develop games that cater to them, be it feminists, homosexuals, transgender people or furries, IDGAF.

    Protagonists should all be genderless blobs, maybe make them slimes, there, I want a party full of slimes so everyone can shut up about gender under-representation. Videogames people! We play them to distract ourselves from the world, stop bringing this stuff because it’s honestly doing more harm than good.

    • puchinri

      You really don’t have to click/read these articles if you don’t like these kind of talks. ouo;

      I mean, technically, they affect us all (on larger and smaller scales) regardless, and it’s fine if you don’t care, but these kinds of things do have a variety of impacts on the industry.

      Also, feminist propaganda, really? ^u^;

      • Sheep

        Nah, the fact that the title is an obvious attempt at promoting the writer’s own opinion and the fact that a moderator who agrees with the sentiment in said title commented very quickly and was going further with that…

        I mean you really don’t think the dubious things you did with this article was , in any way really anything more than just really awful “click-bait”?

        And is pretty much BLOGGING YOUR OPINION BECAUSE HAHA, WE’RE FEMINIST-ALIGNED AND THEREFORE OBJECTIVELY RESPECTABLE, LET’S TALK ABOUT AN IMPORTANT ISSUE TO SEEM RELEVANT SOMEHOW, IT’S A FLAWLESS PLAN TO PROMOTE THAT AGENDA.

        Regardless of whether or not the “agenda” is “correct”, it’s an awful and reprehensible practice.

        “Feminist propaganda” is an exaggeration, I personally don’t have any opinion or view on feminism other than it being an important movement for equal rights , but what you did here is just awful in terms of how this was conducted in the first place:

        You should be ashamed of even putting on the facade for a second that you didn’t artificially construct whatever went on in this comment section.

        That is, drumming up “controversy / discussion” with an obvious bias and then planning to promote that view, rather than whatever you were reporting on originally.

        You just took a page from Kotaku’s book, that’s very obvious here.

    • SerendipityX

      I shouldn’t but here goes. Is there something wrong with women wanting more representation in videogames? It isn’t feminist propaganda for the female audience to want to be catered to with female protagonists and the like.

      • Zharkiel

        It is your opinion, and as long as it doesn’t break the site’s rules, I’m in no position to tell you what you should, or shouldn’t post even if I disagree with it.

        Now on topic, there isn’t anything wrong with women wanting more representation in videogames, but you’re barking at the wrong tree here. If you think minorities are oversensitive, you haven’t followed the japanese industry for very long, one wrong comment can turn off JP devs from wanting further involvement with the west, and that affects me as someone who mostly play japanese games.

        These whole “females want more reps in gaming” thing is just stirring so many pots everywhere, devs are becoming more afraid to speak out their minds or offending someone with their games and the air is becoming so tense on every community, you people are doing more harm than good.

        Women cry for more reps in games, but what are they really doing about it? Making controversial videos? Creating topics to stir up drama? Why aren’t more women studying game development? Why aren’t more women funding their own gaming studios developing games with a female vision? Why are they only attacking established franchises? It’s all gimme, gimme, gimme! But what are YOU doing about it?

        Really, this whole thing has never been an issue, and the problem is that this stuff is everywhere! Can’t go to a gaming news site these days without reading something about feminism, or how women are portrayed in games, or how offending mamaries are now! I only come to Sili because since Adriasang died, this is one of the few that mostly focus on the types of games I play, and even if I disagree with some of their policies, there’s not much else to choose. I just don’t want this place to become the next “K” if you know what I mean

        • SerendipityX

          So basically what you’re saying is females should sit here and do nothing…b/c for a long while that was what female gamers did and it didn’t get us anywhere.

          If you’re refering to Anita, I’m just here to let you know that not every female gamer completely agrees with her. Heck I question her credibility all the time but that doesn’t give you the right to spout this nonsensical dribble that we’re ruining gaming.

          I don’t have to create a studio or become a dev to get what I want as a female gamer. And quite frankly it’s just silly to think that way.

          • Zharkiel

            “So basically what you’re saying is females should sit here and do nothing…”

            Quite the opposite actually, I want you to DO something, but something that involves YOU working on YOUR issue. All you’re doing now is complain and complain and complain and complain and make more devs afraid of you people.

            “I don’t have to create a studio or become a dev to get what I want as a female gamer.”

            And established studios don’t have to pander to your needs, it goes both ways. Just because you’re a woman you’re not entitled to representation in entertainment media. Want more female reps? Do something about it, but do something that actually involves you doing SOMETHING about it.

          • M’iau M’iaut

            Me thinks the rants can end now. Thanks.

          • Zharkiel

            It wasn’t a rant, please excuse the use of caps but I don’t know how to insert bold text in here. It wasn’t meant to come of as yelling, more like empathizing what I was trying to say.

          • MrSirFeatherFang

            to use bold
            bold
            edit: without the spaces of course

          • Zharkiel

            Noted, thanks for the tip

          • CirnoLakes

            Basically, this site uses html code rather than bbcode. Not all html, I’m sure. But plenty. A lot of the time is it a simple matter of a [ becoming a < and so forth.

          • SerendipityX

            Not sure if you meant me. But I’ll stop.

          • SerendipityX

            And established studios don’t have to pander to YOUR needs either. This is so god damn hypocritical I don’t even know where to start.

          • Zharkiel

            Established studios need to pander to their established audiences, because at the end of the day, they’re their most important investors. We, the people who actually buy the games.

            Forgive the bluntness, but feminists aren’t really the target audience for the Megaten games.

          • M’iau M’iaut

            And audiences for products have changed or have been changed throughout history. The Megaten ‘family’ has always had a female audience, especially stateside. Strong female characters and female baddies can bring that about. As have the Atelier titles.

          • Zharkiel

            “And audiences for products have changed or have been changed throughout history”

            And that is good, change is good. Without change we’re left with stagnation. The problem comes when groups start demanding change for the sake of pandering, change will come yes, but people could be more polite about it, instead of provoking devs or scaring them away. See the whole Kamitani fiasco.

            There is a female audience for Megaten games in japan, but I don’t think that particular audience has much in common with people wanting more female representation, most female fans over there are Fujoshi and If my understanding of Fujoshi is right, they want more males, cute males, so there’s that.

          • http://tifpod.tumblr.com/ tifpod

            I am a female Megaten fan and have been since the late ’90s and I very much want more female representation in gaming. In fact, when I saw SMTIV I was secretly hoping they’d pull a Fire Emblem Awakening or P3Portable situation and let the player choose.

          • CirnoLakes

            “most female fans over there are Fujoshi and If my understanding of Fujoshi is right, they want more males, cute males, so there’s that.”
            You misunderstand fujoshi, then.

            Because most Otome games star a female protagonist. Having cute guys doesn’t mean the protagonist needs to be male.

          • SerendipityX

            I don’t disagree with catering to your established audience.

            So now females don’t buy games?

            I’d be very careful with lumping female gamers into the feminist category. We’re not looking for something revolutionary, Atlus is very good at what they do and we’d like to be catered to as well.

            Its not as bad as you’re making it out to be.

          • CirnoLakes

            “Forgive the bluntness, but feminists aren’t really the target audience for the Megaten games.”
            You’d be surprised at how many feminists enjoy the Shin Megami Tensei franchise.

            As well, women in general.

          • CirnoLakes

            “And established studios don’t have to pander to your needs.”
            So making female characters is now this horrible pandering? Why is considering making female characters a horrible thing?

            And what’s wrong with fans having their voice heard?

            People can make a petition to get Dark Souls on PC and win. And people applaud. But someone wants to play as a female character, suddenly their opinion is an unwanted invasive force because they’re female?

            Feminist commentary on video games is no different than any other commentary. We’re gamers, we want things. We want things we want in our games and don’t want the things we don’t want. Some of us want more and better female characters.

          • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

            Yet they can make a petition to get Dark Souls II on the Wii U 15,000 strong and nothing happens and gets sent into obscurity

        • CirnoLakes

          Those, “one off remarks” are pretty common. And usually the comments are a lot more harsh and can often even be downright xenophobic. Than just a bit of “hey, how about a female main character, that’d be pretty cool.”

          People have been talking about female protagonists since the beginning for video games. For goodness sake, what about the whole Ms. Pac-Man thing?

          Rather, the kinds of stuff that is scaring away Japan from the West is stuff far more insensitive. Stuff like Westerners outright decrying Japanese games as “junk”. Of which some Westerners appear impossible to please. Furthermore, complaining about all Japanese aesthetics. And going around saying things like “Japanese people are a bunch of pedophiles and their games are a bunch of pedophile crap.”

          This isn’t healthy talk about gender. It is nationalistic bashing of Japanese games. It used to be such a thing was more difficult to do, because the video game industry was one of the few industries where Japan had an irrevocable foothold, to love video games was a love something Japanese, at one point in time. And once Nintendo saved the Western game industry, it was taboo for many to talk down about Japanese or Asian culture and design.

          But now that Japan is going through a bit of a rough time, many who never liked Japan much to begin with are using this as their excuse to kick Japan when they’re down and show their xenophobic feelings. In fact the way some in the video game industry and fandom speak, I believe it goes on into full on anti-Asian sentiment.

          Again, this used to be too taboo to see anywhere because we have Japan to thank for the very game industry today. But now that West has been getting stronger in the industry, and Japan getting weaker, many are letting their actual feelings about Japan come to the surface. And it isn’t pretty.

          That being said, having a reasonable and polite discussion about gender shouldn’t scare anyone away.

      • l777l

        It’s fine to voice your wishes and preferences. The problem is that many feminists display a sense of irrational entitlement and couple their demands with disparaging remarks directed against men overall. I don’t think it’s surprising that heterosexual men who find themselves confronted with accusations of being misogynists, sexists, and vile oppressors begin to have enough of it. The overarching “patriarchy” and conspiracy theories/narrative and the hysteria and paranoia these instill do overshadow fair wishes voiced by other women.

        It’s unfortunate that great women get caught up in the crossfire. Considering all the recent feminist hostility, men should appreciate fair and kind women even more, and listen to them.

        • SerendipityX

          Gaming in general has become more mainstream so its not surprising that those type of radical feminists have been actively running around claiming to be speaking for the female gamer. And since theres really no way to tell the difference between us everything gets misconstrued.

          That’s where all the hostility and problems arises. But yeah I agree with you.

        • puchinri

          Hey man, careful. I’m one of those dirty, equality-wanting/loving feminists. >’(

          Seriously though (I am a feminist seriously), I think the feminists that people lump into that category are pretty much like some of the MRA folks. Mens’ issues really are a serious thing and in a certain way, don’t get talked about/dealt with either (the real issues), but that’s because you have ridiculous people spouting crap from within the group and sidetracking and derailing from the real issues. (I.e. mra guys that spout off the Nice Guy ™ stuff rather than consider the issues with gender and fluidity/expression of and sexuality that men face.)

          Also, I don’t think it’s ever really possible for feminists to be entitled to anything, no matter how bad they are (they can feel it maybe, but we can’t say anything they do is entitled or that they have it; because the point is they’re lacking that stuff in the first place to have any entitlement over it). Also interesting you said heterosexual men specifically, because that does leave homosexual men and non-cis men in an interesting place there (intersectionality ftw, right?).

          It’s just really sad that both sides have extremely vocal minorities that get touted as the face of these groups and the real issues and any debate, conversation or coverage/calling out gets drowned out by what follows. But on the otherhand, that’s why moments like these are nice. A lot of talk came about, and a lot was said (some of it intelligent, some of it was just whining or griping). And we clearly have people in the industry that are on our side. I think eventually, feminism will progress further for the sake of mens’ and womens’ issues (and other issues, like race/sexuality/etc) and we’ll see the progress unfold better in the nerd groups and industries (whether they be gaming, comics, etc).

          • l777l

            Hey, puchinri. I’ll provide a few reactions, in a – let’s say – ‘creative’ order.

            Yes, I deliberately said “heterosexual” men. That is because they face particular problems and allegations in this matter. When it comes to homosexual men – who are indeed in an interesting place of their own – sexual attraction to women is obviously not a concern. Forgive me for using this terminology, but sexual attraction of men to women, and male preference for femininity when it comes to women, are traditionally ‘problematized” by feminists. Heterosexual men are wolves, homosexual men are sheep of a different color.

            As for “entitlement”, that clearly is part of reality. It’s when a person asserts that she or he has a (moral, or legal) right and someone else a corresponding obligation. You can say that you’re (morally) entitled to having your boyfriend get you some ice cream, I can say that I’m entitled to having my girlfriend get me a sandwich. One, none, or both of us may be misguided in that. That would mean there’d be a false sense of entitlement. (Arguably, women do not have a right that men make games for them. One can disagree here, unsurprisingly.)

            Finally in this array of remarks, let me say that I acknowledge biological sex differences, that group-allegiance has its dangers, that I think chivalry should not be dead, that individual freedom based on responsibility is pivotal, and that talking to you seems promising. Oh, what’s that about “nice guys”?

          • CirnoLakes

            It is possible to be critical of heterosexual norms without being too critical of heterosexuality itself.

            A lot of stuff that may be seen as “normal heterosexual attraction” and “normal attraction to femininity” might be very non-essential to heterosexuality at all.

            Society puts awfully harsh constrictions on women in order to be considered attractive to heterosexual men. And I wouldn’t call men wolves, but society does often teach men a form of dating, romantic, and sexual norms, as well as a lot of social interaction norms with women in general that is predatory. It isn’t men who are at fault, but society is teaching them and attempting to normalize something that shouldn’t be normalized. Something that isn’t healthy for men or women.

          • l777l

            “Society puts awfully harsh constrictions on women in order to be considered attractive to heterosexual men.”

            Beauty largely is a biological factor. It’s a rather reliable indication of biological (physical and psychological) and genetic health (immune system, hormonal status, fertility), as well as general intelligence. Symmetry, hip-waist ratio, complexion, muscle tone, bone structure etc. are not hollow aspects, not cultural inventions. They have profound evolutionary meaning. Oh, and if you think that an unparalleled preference of men for young women is a construction of culture, then you may want to look up fertility and child well-being as it relates to a woman’s age. Simplified: this age preference reflects the different biological “clocks” of men and women.

            And of course things are harsh. Mating is a matter of competition. For men, and for women. Beauty, intelligence, status, education, sense of humor, compassion and so forth are all elements of competition. This is competition over benefits. Benefits are healthy. The act of competing isn’t always. But much like in regular markets, a market economy increases overall utility. And if there’s one competition that’s inevitable and eternal it is that over mating and sex.

            If you want to make things more fulfilling, you should acknowledge that male and female sexuality are different, much like their parental investment and parental certainty. Then you should figure out what you want, independently. Trying to do (casual) sex like men, based on the notion that men and women just must be alike, is a fairly good recipe for disaster. I’d also recommend thinking about the “types” of men who are out there. Some of the more traditional, gentlemanly men could be – but aren’t necessarily – better for you.

          • CirnoLakes

            Ah, you’re one of those types of people that sees a tendency in society and automatically assume it is biological hardwiring.

            It’s no wonder you’re against feminism. You see claims of sexism from feminists, and see biological hardwiring. And then see those who socially rebel against sexist norms as going against nature. As as a “recipe of disaster”.

            It is amazing how many people attempt to use a rudimentary understanding of evolution to justify sexism and silence opposition as going against nature. People such as yourself are doing a very good job of keeping sexism alive by claiming that patriarchy is biological nature. I think that the fact there are so many people out there who still think like this is a good reason that feminism still exists. There are so many people in this world who still believe that sexism is innate and biological in origin.

          • l777l

            “Ah, you’re one of those types of people that sees a tendency in society and automatically assume it is biological hardwiring.
            It’s no wonder you’re against nature.”

            Try to be reasonable, Lakes. Tell me precisely which claims of mine you dispute and I’ll see whether I can provide you with scientific evidence.

            In what way am I “against nature”? And in what way do you respect science?

            By the way, watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQ2xrnyH2wQ

          • CirnoLakes

            ” Tell me precisely which claims of mine you dispute”
            Okay.

            First of all, seeing “profound evolutionary meaning” in every form of attraction is ridiculous. You’re attempting to turn selection into an all encompassing system of judgement of human beings.

            “Oh, and if you think that an unparalleled preference”
            Wait, before I could say anything about the next part, unparalleled in comparison to what? Where is this “unparalleled” coming from?

            And yes, women having lower fertility periods than men. That doesn’t mean that preference for younger women could not be heavily socially influenced and enforced. You cannot assume that in society, if you see something that correlated with a biological fact that is must be the absolute cause. Correlation does not equal causation. And seeing an aspect of society, and then seeing a biological fact, and then assuming a hypothesis that there’s a connection between the two is fact is not sound science or reasoning.

            If so much social behavior is all oriented to selecting good partners successfully, then what of the fact that, old male partners may yield epigenetic problems? If it were all about nature fertility wouldn’t be the only issue. Women lose fertility much later in life. Men also can have fertility problems much later in life. The same, this isn’t just older women that would be selected against, but also men. Because of epigenetic issues and so forth. There appears to be evidence that both older women and older men breeding could have epigenetic consequence for children.

            Also, having an origin in nature doesn’t excuse a behavior or social norm. Many claim that violent behavior is biological in origin, it does not excuse the behavior. Many heterosexual norms are just justified by anything, including an argument to nature. Many also make the claim that men being attracted to and mating with teenage girls is normal and natural because of fertility and evolutionary psychology. With absolutely no neurological proof or even any real major evidence of such a thing. And here’s a further thing, none of that ethically justifies having sex with underage kids. And no amount of claiming it is an evolutionary based attraction is going to justify older men having sex with teenage girls.

            “Trying to do (casual) sex like men, based on the notion that men and
            women just must be alike, is a fairly good recipe for disaster.”

            Recipe for disaster in that there is still a lot of unfortunate slut shaming in society that can and needs to go away?

            Or “recipe for disaster” in that you think that women acting promiscuously in a way similar to men is going against nature? In that you think that slut shaming is biological in origin and irremovable from society?

            Bullshit. I don’t often say swear words. But bull, fucking, shit.

            Slut shaming is not okay. And biology is not only not proven, but not an excuse. Yes, the fertilization process is one-sided. As women must go through pregnancy while a man, could go on. But that doesn’t mean that slut shaming is a biological thing. And it certainly doesn’t mean that men who act in a promiscuous fashion are socially acceptable. This biological fact doesn’t equate to neurological fact. Nor does it equal to ethical justification.

            Because of these sociological standards of behavior. There are lots of statistics and other evidence showing that men lie and exaggerate the amount of sexual partners they have had. While women tend to like and under-tell the amount of sexual partners they have had. It is because women are slut-shamed for having a lot of sex. And men are shamed, particularly in homo-socialization, for having few sexual partners.

            This is NOT acceptable. It is extremely sexist that this still goes on and it should disappear. No amount of biological bullshit excuses make this ethically acceptable behavior. Slut shaming is not okay. And we are not biologically hardware and unstoppable from acting this way. Women’s promiscuity can and should be treated the same as men’s. And the fact that people think that not only is slut shaming justified, but biologically unstoppable because of some unproven ideas they have about different groups of people all having irreconcilably different brains neurologically makes my flesh crawl.

            These standards of sex and social acceptance push dating in our current society into a predatory game. There’s no making excuses or biologically justifying it. It is predatory. It is treating men as having something to gain from having sex and women as having something to lose. It is treating women as giving something up of themselves for a man. This is not okay. This is not ethically acceptable. This is sexist. And it is repulsive.

            There are also lots of people trying to say that rape and murder are both biological in origin. Have an origin in evolutionary biology/psychology. Guess what? That isn’t an excuse for either of those things, either. Biology is not an excuse for murder. Biology is not an excuse for rape.

            And as well, biology is not an excuse for sexism in general. People can stop raping. People can stop murdering. And people can stop slut shaming. Praising men for having sex while shaming women for doing the same is not ethically acceptable behavior and it needs to stop.

            “In what way am I “against nature”?”
            That was a typo. I meant to say “against feminism”. It’s pretty clear that was a typo, as it went against the message of the rest of my post.

          • l777l

            “First of all, seeing “profound evolutionary meaning” in every form of attraction is ridiculous. You’re attempting to turn selection into an all encompassing system of judgement of human beings.”

            That’s not precise. I have identified specific elements of attraction and connected them to evolutionary relevance. You have not yet pointed out mistakes in that. If you are at all able to, point out precisely which points you dispute. (To illustrate, you could claim that symmetry is not an indicator for health.)

            Allow me to ask whether you accept the theory of natural selection?

            “If so much social behavior is all oriented to selecting good partners successfully, then what of the fact that, old male partners may yield epigenetic problems?”
            We’re talking about evolution. People getting really old is not something from our evolutionary past. It’s a recent change. Here, science (medicine [health care, fertility], food, hygiene etc.) and culture (e. g. less violence) definitely play a role. Speaking in terms and temporal dimensions of time, any man who made it to old age and could have sex with a (younger) woman likely has rather good genes (status, and resources) that offset whatever epigenetic disadvantage there may be. There’s no total disagreement between us. Culture definitely has an influence, as described above. Here it counteracts biological tendencies. It can also reinforce some.

            “Also, having an origin in nature doesn’t excuse a behavior or social norm.”
            It does not necessarily “excuse” behavior, yes. See ‘Naturalistic Fallacy’. That’s also an idea Hobbes had. Which is where the Leviathan came into play. Culture does oppose “nature red in tooth and claw”. However, nature is not entirely brutal. Evolution speaks for degrees of cooperation (see, for example, Trivers, Axelrod, Novak): kin- and group-level selection.

            Biology doesn’t, and much less do I and present culture, advocate indiscriminately hitting people over the head with clubs and seeing what the outcome is. I appreciate the rule of law, generally. Whether society takes biological dispositions and deficits into account is something that must be determined.

            “Recipe for disaster in that there is still a lot of unfortunate slut shaming in society that can and needs to go away?
            Or “recipe for disaster” in that you think that women acting promiscuously in a way similar to men is going against nature? In that you think that slut shaming is biological in origin and irremovable from society?”

            “Slut shaming”, by choice of words alone, is the wrong thing to do. What I’ve said is about individual well-being. One should take sex and gender differences into account when figuring out how to treat others, and how to act oneself. Note that many sex differences are average differences: there are women who are taller than men, for example. We still are a dimorphic species. Back to casual sex, if casual sex makes a woman happy and she doesn’t directly harm others, shaming her for it is generally wrong. However the average women is not like the average man when it comes to sex. Acknowledging sex differences is not sexist; denying them is. Acknowledging gender differences is not sexist. The ultimate goals are happiness and justice. Achieving them requires treating (some) different things differently, and like things alike. Telling women that they are all like men is indeed a recipe for disaster. Take a look at Catherine Hakim’s Preference Theory.

            I’m for ‘difference’, ‘choice’, and ‘equity’ feminism, as well as libertarianism.

          • CirnoLakes

            By the way, watch this video

            I’ve seen that video before. Or rather that series of videos. Along with a lot of other bullshit videos that people like to parade around to make them feel wonderfully politically incorrect and enlightened.

            Some bullshit video by some bullshit comedian attempting to stir up things is the best you had to try to educate me to your position?

            First of all, Norway isn’t this perfect place where sexism or other discrimination is over. For goodness sake there’s been several violent white supremacists acting out in the country in the past few years. Norway is a nice country, but it isn’t the equalist utopia. Especially when you have folks like that who think their country is living under some poor politically correct dogma that those other countries know better than. Awaken Norway, huh? Yeah, I’m sure the right wing nationalist nutjobs in Norway would love that.

            And how naive, that comedian thinks he has some special enlightenment on the issue. And that because “mommy didn’t teach me to abide by gender roles” he’s been in a social vacuum where biology takes hold. Or that because in his select examples of cherry picking bits of culture, there weren’t any obvious examples of brainwashing, that Norway must be this gender neutral post-feminist society. Pathetic.

            People like Simon Baron-Cohen are full of shit. The idea that Autism is “the extreme male brain” is one of the dumbest ideas ever. One Norwegian guy’s flawed anecdotal story matters? What about the millions of Autistic people around the world who think that Simon Baron-Cohen’s ideas are stupid? It is because of people like Simon Baron-Cohen that girls are underdiagnosed with Autism. And articles out there like in Psychology Today defending the guy sicken me. The guy is doing harm and sticking up for his harmful claims does no help for anyone, the least of which people with Autism. “Oh Simon Baron-Cohen is such an empathetic man leave him alone.” Maybe he should have had empathy for all of the millions of Autistic girls and women of the world undiagnosed because many in the field look at Autism as a “boy thing”.

            You like posting little entertainment oriented videos about gender roles and society in relation to biology, short and simply and coming from comedians rather than experts? How about you watch this video?

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DEBLGJg5ZD4

            Or better yet, how about reading a full book? I recommend reading Delusions of Gender by Cordelia Fine. The book shoots holes in that little video of a Norwegian comedian you post. In painstaking detail. Absolutely rips it apart.

          • l777l

            “Some bullshit video by some bullshit comedian attempting to stir up things is the best you had to try to educate me to your position?
            First of all, Norway isn’t this perfect place where sexism or other discrimination is over.”

            You didn’t understand the point. The point is that in countries with great gender equality, female occupational choices are traditional, more traditional than in countries with (much) less gender equality. Given greater freedom, women’s choices are more traditional.

            By focusing on the narrator (who studied sociology), you seem to have overlooked all the scientists (experts) in the video. Not a little oversight, but an entertaining one.

            Autism is highly heritable (genetic), and it is undisputed that men are more affected by it, as they are by ADHD and dyslexia. Can you illustrate that any of this leads to females being under-diagnosed (Baron-Cohen doesn’t claim only males have autism)? It certainly doesn’t prevent them from doing rather well in school.

            By the way, you should consider calming down. Your “argument” based on cursing is not that effective. You should also think about what you aim to achieve here. Do you want to vent frustration? Do you want to publicly repeat your beliefs in order to feel more comfortable? This zealous anger (including the poor belittling) has little value; and it makes it difficult to take you seriously.
            I would enjoy taking you seriously, Lakes.

          • CirnoLakes

            overlooked all the scientists (experts) in the video.
            I have not. The narrator has cherry picked a lot of people in various studies or whatnot that support ideas of neurosexism.

            It is not indisputable whatever leaning Autism may have to gender. Among the Autistic Rights community there is a major concern over the under-diagnosis of girls with Autism. And multiple cases showing how the field of psychology and psychiatry has prejudice against diagnosing females with Autism. It’s quite likely that people such as Cohen are contributing to this.

            And to say that women choose traditional roles when given freedom is quite an assumption based upon just looking at countries like Norway and contrasting with Middle Eastern countries.

            And quite an assumption that freedom would cause women to go for traditional roles in society and jobs. It could be that, while many women in situations of poverty do pursue such careers more often than in countries with greater economies. It doesn’t mean that freedom or greater wealth in general caused this. These women in poverty were put in a situation to struggle. While women in countries like Norway are in positions where there are still social norms promoting them to take traditional roles. While a lack of poverty pushing them against traditional roles.

            I certainly don’t think that biology pushes women to seek careers and caretaking or other ‘traditional’ roles.

          • l777l

            I see. Then you haven’t overlooked them, you merely choose to disregard science that clashes with your own choice of neurosexism.

            ‘Disease competition’ is not surprising, and hysteria tends to ensue when sex differences come into play. A rather ungood combination. Are there hysteria and unrest in the female dyslexics association (there has to be such a one, at least functionally) too?
            At any rate, science should be about truth. Baron-Cohen’s – whom you’ve singled out – research appears to be exact enough, and he marks theory as theory. Granted, for policy purposes, it would be easier if autism was a prostate thing. Then again, we’d probably have prostate autism opposed with breast autism, vying for attention and resources.

            “And to say that women choose traditional roles when given freedom is quite an assumption based upon just looking at countries like Norway and contrasting with Middle Eastern countries.”
            Check that segment again. It’s not just Norway and the Middle East. There are many more countries included.

            Apparently your view is that the “gender roles” in Middle Eastern countries are less pervasive than in egalitarian Western countries. That’s inspiring.

            So, in your view, economic and legal freedom, coupled with affirmative action programs doesn’t cause women to choose less “traditional” (people-oriented) jobs than poverty and having to take whatever (unconventional) job to survive in desolate countries does. Note also that women have conquered much of the (formerly) traditionally male domains of law and medicine. Whereas they haven’t done nearly the same in science and engineering (including information technology). This stable discrepancy further supports a female preference mediated by, or based on, biology (sex difference). The assumption that several traditionally male (intellectual) domains keep out women, while other such realms allow their massive influx would be adventurous. It’s free choice. You seem to think of most women – including highly educated ones – as infantile, unable to understand what their preferences are and to act in accordance, pursuing what makes them happy. (That being said, “Make Women Poor and Unhappy So They’ll Choose Engineering” sounds like an endearing campaign. A grain of truth in this adventurous idea, nonetheless: Telling women that they are victims of patriarchy and cuddling them is probably not going to make them more likely to succeed competitively. They may still enjoy the cuddling. [Even as a guy, I see good things about cuddling.])

            Realistically, though, it is likely that different biology does cause such differences. You should check out Taylor’s ‘The Tending Instinct’, Henry Holt. I’ve read Fine’s book; interestingly, she conspicuously ignores the matter of oxytocin. I’ve also read Jordan-Young’s ‘Brain Storm’, Harvard UP. After first calling for better methodological approaches, she in the end pretty much calls for abandoning the entire line of research. A very dissonant and self-contradicting thing to do. (Oh, I’d also point out Locke, Duels and Duets, Cambridge UP — nice to think about; whether it convinces you is a different thing. Also, let me remind you of Catherine Hakim. Further, work by Hrdy could be to your liking.)

            I’d like to balance this adversarial encounter a bit, Lakes. What are your favorite games?

        • Asura

          And you wonder why people call you out on your BS after typing out something like that? Wow.

          • l777l

            What gave you that idea?

        • CirnoLakes

          I love how I’m finally getting to understand the sorts of claims of why some people claim “too many feminists are SO CRAZY” and what minority of feminists these folks must have come across to skew their opinion of feminists as all being radically nutty.

          It isn’t that. It’s that some people see even the most moderate and normal claims by feminists and translate it in their mind to “oh my god misandry” and “oh god so hardcore and hateful what a (Godwin’s Law)”.

          Patriarchy isn’t a conspiracy. In feminist theory, it is a mode of society in which men and masculinity are more valued. A society in which men having more social and economic power is the norm and this greater male empowerment than female empowerment is enforced through social norms and mores.

          In other words, partriarchy is a single word to describe two words, male privilege. And yeah, seeing Patriarchy isn’t weird. That’s how it works. Society is littered with all sorts of elitism, from racism, to classism, to heterosexism, and so forth. It wouldn’t be a problem and there wouldn’t be so much inequality still between all sorts of groups, if it were just a couple tiny aspects of society contributing to privileged or unequal attitudes.

          It is a million tiny little things that add to the patchwork of racism and sexism and so forth we see in the world today. In terms of male privilege, we call that system of millions of tiny pieces patriarchy.

          • l777l

            Privilege translates into power. If you analyse all social spheres and relationships, it’d be silly to claim that women have less power (overall). It’s also silly to claim that femininity isn’t valued. Greater verbal skills, and greater empathy (as a personality trait: “agreeableness”) are much valued. It’s simply that the rewards aren’t necessarily monetary. The rewards lie in more fulfilling relationships, morality, and in greater health. They contribute to an explanation of why women have stronger personal networks, better health and a better work-life balance. (All on average.) Women are appreciated. They outperform men in schools, and there are more of them in law and medical professions.
            The fact that there are absolutely few (and relatively more) men in “excellent” economic positions has limited significance, much like the fact that there are mostly men in prisons, sewers, war, and slaughter houses (very pleasant, these occupations). These few are extremes. It’d be misleading to restrict analyses to them.

            Masculinity is not more valued. It is differently valued. And that makes eminent sense, since masculinity is different (from femininity). Essentially – if there are essences in this – we have matriarchies and patriarchies in one system. The patriarchy talk, as has also become apparent here, is either blindly ignorant or selectively ignorant. It is deficient and insufficient.

    • brian

      Psst hey Kenji IS THAT YOU?
      I feel you on all this feminist stuff man, they’re taking over.

    • CirnoLakes

      “I come here to play games”
      Actually, you come here to READ about video games.

      And yeah, being able to play as male or female characters isn’t exactly unrelated to video games.

      I guess I’m not allowed to make offhand remarks about how I enjoy playing as female characters in video games. That’s not video game related! Oh please.

    • Hinataharem

      I love slimes. My favorite DQ monster class. But this is still an issue, especially when videogames are a medium that allows for freedom, and choice of sex is part of that. And this hardly feminist propaganda. Its a legit question, because MANY other series allow sex choice, and SMT as sad by others, has blank slate protags so we can put ourselves in there shoes, and it would be nice if girls (and guys) could play as a female.

  • Mozendo

    I don’t see why they can’t do the alternate characters thing like done in other RPGs like Star Ocean: The Second Story, and the Pokemon games.

    • Jibun Rest@rt

      Star Ocean: The Second Story is an entirely different case than the Pokemon games. In SO2, each character has different scenarios depending on which gender you choose, different endings. Basically, scenes change depending on whether you’re Rena or Claude because they’re both characters. This is a bit more difficult to do, because it requires writing certain parts of the story from two different aspects, as opposed to just flipping a character’s gender at the start of the game and only having to change the gender pronouns used and maybe a line or two of dialogue, which is what I think is being proposed for SMTIV. It’s a lot harder.

      I’m not against a female character in SMT, far from it actually, but comparing the option to SO2 isn’t quite right.

      • Mozendo

        But don’t they still cross paths and become become a part of the story regardless of whom you picked? Maybe that what a wrong example, but you know what I meant.

        • Jibun Rest@rt

          You’re right, they do! But Star Ocean 2 is an example of designing a story around two characters. Designing a game around two neutral gender-based protags like Pokémon is a different undertaking. I’m just trying to say that they’re two different kinds of projects. An SMT game would (probably) be more like Pokémon, in which only gender pronouns and some minor dialogue changes. You’re not wrong, per se, Star Ocean is just a complicated way to design a game and it has less to do with “pick your gender” and more to do with “pick a point of view to see the story from.”

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    (If) had a female lead, why not all?

    • MrSirFeatherFang

      (If) only everyone knew about that game.

      • ShawnOtakuSomething

        that was harsh, senpai…..

        • MrSirFeatherFang

          I’m more interested in those older MegaTen games than P5 tbh…

          • ShawnOtakuSomething

            I’m in way to deeply with both

      • CirnoTheStrongest

        I always wish that they’d do a follow-up to that game. And not some mobile game >_<
        EDIT
        I probably worded that weirdly, but I want another If…. game basically

  • LightZero

    A male and female role wouldn’t be difficult. SMT: if… and P3P did it. I prefer to play as males since I’m a male, but there should be an option for those who like playing as females.

    • JustThisOne

      I wouldn’t say it’s not difficult. It’s doable, but it’s certainly difficult. There are tons of small differences, and that adds up. If they want to make it a significant difference, it’s even harder.

      So… the real question is: Is it worth the effort? If I remember correctly, P3P did pretty well. But that’s a Persona title. For the SMT crowd, I’m not sure if it’ll fly as well.

  • Kyle McDaniel

    Why not just give the player the option of choosing gender?

  • ndjn3979

    The best thing would be have an option to be of either gender. It’s easily doable by developers.

    • l777l

      I disagree. They should choose male or female and concentrate their resources.

      • ndjn3979

        But…it’s equally do-able and much easier than you imply. All they have to do is substitute a few key characters and cutscenes, and add a few details and nuances.

  • brian

    I actually thought this most recent MC was a girl because of his hair.

  • revenent hell

    Im female and I don’t particularly care if I get a female protag or not….Though when the option is given I go the female rout unless there’s some kind of gay perk for picking a male haha
    But traditionally whether I get the option or not is not a big deal to me as long as the game is good.

  • ChiffonCake

    Cool guy Doi has the right idea. My respect for him has increased.

    I really hope that future Megaten games will at least have an option. Especially P5.

  • Steven Higgins

    Simple solution. Do what they did with P3P and have it be optional. Traditionalists happy. Non-traditionalists happy. There, done.

  • MrTyrant

    It seems to me that people forgot about Shin Megami Tensei: If. You could choose a male/female lead in that game.

    About the gender I never had a problem with it if they give me the choice for one or another. Now I expect that for replay value they add different kind of events or dialogues according MC gender in the right moments of course. Like the dialogues with demons being different if you are a girl.

    • Haseyo

      Then all you’ll have are demons hitting on you >_>

      • MrTyrant

        Female demons tend to hit your male main character like any SMT. It happened a lot in Devil Summoner saga where you could even seduce them with sweet talk while the dialogues with some male demons were bro-tier xD it could be the contrary for female MC.

  • Guest

    Pokemon’s been doing it for years. Step it up, Atlus.

    • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

      MCs in pokemon dont have dialogues…. So is not that hard, and the other chars in pokemon arent “deep” enough to actually say things related to your gender, so they dont really have to worry much, If that’s the case, harvest moon too, and now rune factorty too… and many other games.

    • MrTyrant

      Don’t tell me that you are one of those dudes that keep comparing both series that has nothing in common aside from using some kind of “monster” in battles.

  • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

    Good

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    I actually kinda understand where Doi come from here.

    While many would love to had an option for being able to choose as being male or female, i believe having a specific gender from the first is much better here as it would be able to increase the immersion level of the players.

    I mean yeah being able to choose as female is great but if the conversation is more or less the same as male lead or even worse it cause the conversation to be more generic, i would take one specific genre here.

    • SerendipityX

      Agreed. However I do want them to keep a female protagonist in mind (kinda like P3P) b/c Atlus has shown to be very, very good at it.

      • MrSirFeatherFang

        I’d like to change between genders as one character. The best of both worlds!!!!!!

        • SerendipityX

          lol

        • Colonel Custard

          Lol if only…

        • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

          Ranma 1/2?

    • CirnoTheStrongest

      “or even worse it cause the conversation to be more generic,”
      have you played a Megaten game? Gender is nothing but appearance in those games and some pronouns. It literally would have ZERO affect on the game

      The Persona games the argument could be made a little stronger, but the Megaten series have always had extremely blank slate protagonists

  • doozer667

    That’s one of the weakest arguments I have ever heard.

    • MrSirFeatherFang

      Tradition can be very strong and influential at times. Even if it doesn’t seem to make sense :D
      It can be very good to uphold dying traditions or very bad that it prevents people from moving on and learning from mistakes.
      At least he’s open to the idea of a female protagonist for the series. There seems like there will be more on the interview later on.
      Spencer lures people to this site in with this article and makes them stay for the real interview! That devil may sly

  • https://twitter.com/#!/JadenPrinceton C.Guzman

    I think it would be nice to have. I don’t really like having to choose a gender, but as long as I haven’t played the game before, I can dig it. (ex: P3P. I played as FeMC and did not like it, it didn’t feel right because I had already played P3.)

    SMT has strong female characters and I’d definitely like to see one take the lead some day, but if it doesn’t happen it won’t bother me.

  • Lazulis

    Just make an androgynous character. And you have your male/female character! Seriously though, maybe just do it like in Fire Emblem Awakening? Harvest Moon’s doing it, Pokemon’s doing it…customizable characters are nice. And I don’t think it really matters that much in SMT does it? It’d be great to have more female protagonists in games, or even better representation of females in games in general. It’d be nice if a game let one choose their sex and gender, but that’s not going to happen for a while. Not in mainstream titles at least. Maybe indies.

    • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

      Fire Emblem: Awakening did it right imo. The only minor complaint I have that, regardless whether you choose boy or girl, your avatar basically bordered on Mary Sue territory.

      • JustThisOne

        Ugh, this so bad. Took everything I had to stop characters from falling in love with the Avatar, and that goes for all genders.

        • SerendipityX

          Glad I wasn’t the only struggling with love issues in FE. I couldn’t choose! D:

      • http://wiredjungle.wordpress.com/ DrakosAmatras

        Well, the Avatar being the representative of the player, they do have to succeed repeatedly to progress in the story. But yes, I don’t disagree on your point, due to various characters and the game repeating how awesome Avatar is. Perhaps it came off as a bit too pandering to some?

        That said, Avatar does have their own quirks and vulnerabilities, so I suppose they at least satisfy the criteria of a balanced character in terms of traits.

        • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

          In the previous FE installment, Heroes of Light and Shadow, you could create an avatar as well (customization was more limited sadly enough). The avatar was basically a zealous knight that would kiss the ground Prince Marth stood on. Quite some characters were unsettled by this, made fun of it. He/she was also a bad cook and was quite reckless. Hell, even certain conversations differ depending on how much times your units got defeated or died during levels (if you did bad, your commander basically said you suck at it).
          Compared to the Avatar of Awakening, that felt far more refreshing because while the Avatar from Heroes of Light and Shadow was an exceptional combatant, he/she was also overdramatic and flawed in its ways.
          There were moments in Awakening that I jokingly thought, “Please, can someone say how much I fail at this or something. I love the praising, but do something else for a change”, haha xD

          • http://wiredjungle.wordpress.com/ DrakosAmatras

            I see. I don’t know how many Supports the Avatar from FE12 had, but I’ve gone through all of FE13 Male Avatar’s Supports with all the characters, and he does come off as a character with the quirks you mentioned. For example, Libra Support sees him trying to paint and fail spectacularly; Donnel Support shows that he’s not a good cook at all while he understands trapping; and Virion Support implies that he’s not as strategically bold as he may look because he tries to reduce casualties as much as possible. So I do think that, for all the unanimous praise he gets in story dialogue, Male Avatar does come off as a more believable character in the Supports – if, for nothing else, because there are tons of Supports for him to build character through.

            Grinding Supports for him to fill up the Log was a trudge, but it was worth it. I haven’t gone through another run with Female Avatar though.

          • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

            Avatar from FE12 could create a support with pretty much everyone, though the characters that appear later on in the game such as Ymir never go to Rank A when it comes to supports (there’s no Rank S in the game). Then again Ymir basically appeared like 2-3 chapters before the final battle against Medeus.
            Admittedly, I still need to grind all those supports. I’m also planning on doing the Female Avatar route. Have made some progress, but I’m currently busy with my Super Robot Wars OG games. Great SRPGs as well.

  • Major Dr. Ghastly

    Yeah, I don’t get where all these complaints are coming from either, if women want games with female leads they should just make them right? It’s not like there’s a history of trying to stop/discourage women from achieving their goals in a male dominated industry…Oh wait…

    Well still! We all know that nothing ever happens when people complain and bring attention to issues of inequality. Nope. Never. Not once in history has “complaining” done anything. Change it more likely to happen when no one addresses the issues.

    Oh wait…

    Okay okay, I couldn’t resist after reading some of the comments, but back on topic! I can’t really…grasp what Doi is saying…? It could be the cultural gap that’s confusing me since I’m not Japanese and I actually know very little about the Japanese game market when compared to the Western one. The reason for not having female leads (or even the option to choose gender) seems, er, like an excuse for a lack of a better word. I guess I just want more of a reason why then “it’s tradition”, but if anyone else understands what that means feel free to explain it to me!

    Not trying to be snarky or anything, I’m actually scratching my head at this one.

    • puchinri

      Hah, I got a good laugh off of all that. Thank you very much for that comment. >u<
      People tend to overlook (or just be plain ignorant) to some issues and context, that's for sure.

      I get the feeling Doi is with some of the other devs on the team that feel the series could/should have a female lead (or at least the option), but I remember there were certain people on the team that also felt the way traditionalists did and basically didn't want/care for a female lead/option. I get the feeling that it's those people really holding back the opportunity to have another/more female leads in the series. It is essentially an excuse, and I wonder if Doi wanted to say as much or was kind of implying it, but I can't say really. (I get the impression he didn't really agree anyway.)

      • l777l

        There are actually several points to tradition in general. Familiarity, being “at home”, nostalgia, safety etc. … these are important aspects. They can make for good reasons, and as such are not mere unfounded ‘excuses’. Some things speak for change, naturally.

      • PersonaBull

        I agree, it seems like he didn’t really agree with the “tradition” excuse. He certainly didn’t seem to see the problem with it, considering ““I like female protagonists,” Doi said. “It would be cool to have a female protagonist in the next SMT game.””

        Not really sure why it seems to be so unreasonable, personally.

    • CirnoLakes

      I just gave a standing ovation in front of my computer monitor.

  • https://twitter.com/Ni_Go_Zero_Ichi Project 2501

    SMT protagonists are usually silent, right? They’re supposed to be blank slates. So why not just let players choose their avatar’s gender? Seems like a logical step.

  • Vash bane

    haha

  • Sardorim

    I would like that it will be hard due to how it’s always had a male lead and most of the fans are male. Wonder if they can get over that hurdle.

  • Skye Johnson

    While I don’t think every game necessarily NEEDS a female main, it certainly would be nice to see more female MCs in gaming and dig those “traditionalists” out from under their rock so they can see a female character can work just as well as a male in a storyline. Just as games don’t always need to have a female mc, games don’t necessarily need to have a male protagonist 90% of the time either. Let’s have a bit more balance.

    Choice though, when available, is always welcome, IMO. I enjoyed P3P for that reason.

    Atlus hasn’t really been doing terribly in that regard, though. IF, P3P, P2 is more than what some brands get, and at the very least they tend to have well-rounded female characters.

  • http://wiredjungle.wordpress.com/ DrakosAmatras

    Having a female protagonist is one thing, but it would defeat the purpose if she was written with mere stereotypical/archetypal tropes; of course, this applies to male protagonists as well, but them being more common, they at least have better odds of producing ones that aren’t trite. I’m not worried about Atlus in particular falling into that trap though, since many of their previous works already have the idea of a gender-neutral protagonist down.

    • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

      What do you exactly mean with stereotypical/archetypal tropes? Sure, it’s stereotypical to portray a woman as overtly girly and pink-pink-pink, but it mustn’t border on anti-femininity. I guess either making the protagonist neutral, giving you personality choices or show diversity within the game (Non-SMT example: Persona 4 showed both a girly girls and tomboys) are the best options.

      • http://wiredjungle.wordpress.com/ DrakosAmatras

        A stereotype is a perception/imagination of how a certain “category” of people in a society supposedly behaves (which may be true or false to a degree). An archetype is a broader term referring to any sort of predetermined patterns that others use as a derivation point. Admittedly, the two words can overlap quite often, but when I said “archetypal tropes” earlier, I’m largely referring to popular character archetypes (or “character templates”) in fiction in any specific culture. I split the two terms because “stereotype” usually contains social connotations while “archetype” tends to be used in a context of creativity.

        • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

          I see, fair enough. Well, I don’t think there’s innately something wrong with archetypal tropes and stereotypical tropes. You know, I think that it isn’t about what kind of tropes you use but HOW you use them. You can use all ideas what you like, but you can only achieve greatness with those ideas when you present them and use them in the right way.

          • http://wiredjungle.wordpress.com/ DrakosAmatras

            Totally agreed. Tropes are merely “bricks” to a fictional work’s construct. It’s just that, in a wider view of the market, repeated use of the same set of tropes wears out their novelty, as well as stagnate the market and creativity, which is why I mark that down as a point for caution.

          • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

            I can agree with that to a certain extend. The only thing I can do for now is saving my money for games that truly appeal to me in both the gameplay and creativity department. Sadly enough, some of those games never leave Japan.

    • amagidyne

      See, one of the weird things about this is that I don’t think she would be written with mere stereotypical/archetypal tropes, and not just because Atlus knows how to handle female characters. SMT and Persona protagonists are blank slates.

      With Persona they have the excuse that being female would change a lot of social interactions and it would require a huge amount of work to include a female mode. In SMT all they need to do is draw up another character model and get an actress to record some battle sounds.

    • CirnoLakes

      If you’re saying you’re worried about people writing bad female characters.

      It is Atlus. I don’t think you have to worry all too much about them writing bad female characters. Atlus aren’t exactly notorious for lazy female character writing or anything.

  • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

    Because “tradition” and “punk” are synonymous, right?

    • CirnoLakes

      I like that reference.

      Hey Atlus, be punk. Gimme a female protagonist.

      • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

        cuz breaking tradition-for-tradition’s sake is punk as fugg!

  • amagidyne

    I think I speak for all human beings when I say the traditionalists can go fuck themselves.

    • Herok♞

      Sorry you don’t speak for all human beings, we all have individual opinions, I feel traditions are fine, other may not, you can even go deeper and say I don’t like sexist traditions , just don’t try to be everyones voice.

  • JustThisOne

    Coming up with a female design and changing all the pronouns might not be the consideration here…

    Perhaps the real question is if they want gender to play a more significant role. If there ever is a choice between playing as a male or playing as a female, will the supporting characters ever treat you differently? Will demon conversations be drastically different?

    *shrug* It really depends on where they want to take it.

  • Villainous Inc.

    I think going forward having a gender option for the MC would be a fine idea. The characters are blank stand-ins for the player. Nothing really has to change because of player avatar gender.

  • transferstudentx

    shin megami tensei games dont need a female lead they just need males with even more swag thats how those games rolls

  • Alex

    Given that the leads in SMT games tend to be ciphers there is no reason they can’t be female. Give half the population a chance to project themselves onto an avatar.

  • Bakuryukun

    That’s stupid. Don’t just service the brand for the sake of servicing the brand. There is absolutely NO reason a Shin Megami Tensei game shouldn’t have a female protagonist, it wouldn’t change the game so much that it would be unrecognizable as a SMT game, so why not?

    Variety is a good thing and tradition for traditions sake leads to bad game design and shallow thinking.

  • http://guillotineghosties.tumblr.com Ghosties

    I really enjoyed P3P and haven’t played a SMT game since, and instead just watched others play them because I can’t really enjoy the game as well.
    It took Pokemon only two generations (if you don’t count G/S, which were released first) to figure out that girls play, too.
    I couldn’t even finish P4 because I found all the girl characters so annoying.
    If you’re not gonna let us play as a girl, at least give us the option to make our male muse gay.

    • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

      Fun fact: a female option was already planned to be included in the very first Pokemon Red and Green version. However, due to budget and deadline issues, they didn’t have enough time to put that feature into the game. Why they didn’t do in G/S, no idea.

      • http://guillotineghosties.tumblr.com Ghosties

        Yeah, I already knew that but most people don’t so I didn’t feel the need to bring it up~ I like Blue/Leaf fairly well, though, and I think the manga does her justice.
        My theory is that they’d already planned on releasing a third special game for gen 2 since Yellow did well, and decided to implement a female character as an incentive for Crystal.

        • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

          Blue/Leaf is one of my more favourite female trainer designs. I haven’t read much of the manga yet, but from what I’ve heard is far more dark and serious compared to the anime.

  • Kamakuma

    Well truthfully I don’t feel strongly either way about having a male or female character. It’s really the story and gameplay that hit home for me. Choosing a gender in a game I could see it opening another aspect in games a bit as being able to see how the girls would react if you were a girls.

    For example if they were be you BFF with no repercussions. As if they were your GF things could get messy if you hang out with others ect. Plus you could see how dating the male cast would lead you to as some of them didn’t really have much luck with females in the first place sadly… Here’s to you Yosuke Hanamura single and still proud… At least I think he is…?

  • Mnstrzero00

    Well as a person who doesnt make these games, or any, I have to respect the creator’s opinion

  • Ferofax

    People might be overthinking this. I think the makers just prefer male leads. If people think it’s a bad thing, then so be it. But does it have to matter? Can’t people just accept that the lead is a male?

    • Asura

      I think you underthought this and didn’t even read short the article, nor even the shorter snipped under the title on the main page.

  • Tatsuya1221

    I may get alot of flak for this but, tradition or not, i can understand why he’s a little reluctant to make a female protagonist.
    Gamers are generally male, though more female gamers are emerging these days.

    Depending on the person, playing as a male or female, depending on gender, can cause you to disassociate with a character, i’ve never been able to associate well with female leads, i don’t mind them from a character standpoint, but i can never associate with them as a main character, as much of a fan of persona 2:EP as i am (if my username isn’t proof of it), i was never able to look at maya as the protagonist of EP, and honestly, if it wasn’t for my fondness of the entire cast (maya included, just not as the MC), it could have dragged the entire game down for me, as i usually play an rpg for immersion and such issues can take me out of the game, i think tatsuya is what made P2EP one of my favorite games of all time though.
    That said, i’m sure the opposite is true for females as well, which is probably one of the reasons why women are less likely to play games than men.

    That said, forgetting everything above, they could easily remedy this by going the SMT:if route, let you choose the gender of the MC, and if there is some form of foil, make them what is most appropriate depending on their position in the story(or not change them at all, depends on the story placement), other than that making the story exactly the same, the downside to such things though is that cg cutscenes would have to not include the MC and said foils,

    Honestly because RPG’s usually try and make you associate with the main character, it’s very difficult to please both sides, tradition or not, i will admit that this is one of the reasons i’ve never been able to get into the neptunia or more recent atelier games, though i think the new one coming out soon might change that, and i know i will like tales of xillia, haven’t played a tales game i hate.

    Anyway i’m not saying anyone is wrong, far from it, but i can understand why they would want to stick to what is guaranteed to work then take a risk with their main franchise, though i personally think they should just make it a choice at the beginning of the game and have it effect the story in no sense whatsoever, as to please both crowds.

    • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

      The problem is people get very stereotypical when they try to appeal to various groups . Its not organic nor does it mesh well

      • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

        Some guys just like having badass female leads because in some form or fashion they always disassociate themselves from protagonists. Either do to their character or something else

  • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

    Tamaki and Maya are some of the series’ most beloved characters. What gives, Atlus? Don’t be so conservative.

    SMT has always been a groundbreaking series, which is why I find this so jarring.

    • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

      Nope the most beloved (At least in Japan) are Raidou Kuzunoha XIV and Yu Narukami.

  • http://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?/topic/25050-farm-mapping-contest/#entry239430 Chaos17

    Just give the choice to made our own avatar just like in fire emblem 3DS please.

    • Mordina

      I would love that.

  • Steven Green

    Why most MC have to be good-looking?

  • CirnoLakes

    I don’t like male protagonist traditions.

    There are good traditions. And there’s not giving me my female protagonist.
    Darn it.

  • madpoon

    Maybe think of it like Legend of Zelda: in next game Link becomes a female. That would actually be pretty interesting but some old fans (“traditionalists”) would be in an uproar. The feminists would be real happy though.

  • KiyoVes

    I think that there should be a FeMC because it is gonna be somewhat different from the traditional male protag. No matter what anybody says, you are gonna be treated differently based on your gender. Even though the gender has no impact on the story (unless they want to), the dialogue and other small things in the game are gonna be different and it gives the game its charm. It will probably be inevitable that there will be sexist comments thrown at the FeMC (just look at Junpei in P3P) but that is something the FeMC and the player will have to overcome.

    Besides, even in Pokemon, I have seen guys who rather pick the girl than the scrawny boy though there is no difference between the two genders. It sometimes just comes down to basic freedom or “how does it feel to be a guy/girl” psychology.

    • https://www.facebook.com/OperationHotblood?ref=hl HeroOfGames16

      Eh, that’s very minimal, at least from the games that I’ve played. And I don’t mind gender neutrality, really.

  • https://twitter.com/A_Beast_of_Prey Equinox K

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I don’t give a flying flip about whether the character I’m using is male or female as long as they are engaging as a character. Granted, I would seriously love to play more games with female protagonists especially if they are done right.

  • Gyre

    Did they forget SMT If…? The one that had Tamaki Uchida? The one that was made the canon character by the events of Persona through Persona 2: Eternal Punishment?

    And considering that the protagonists of the formal Shin Megami Tensei games are always mute and don’t have romances, what difference does it make?

  • Sheep

    Yeah it’s not like the main character isn’t as much of self-insert as you’d like to delude yourself into thinking, it’s not like previous protagonists have ever been referenced before in the game universe and have had an influence on the overarching story, it’s completely not like the game works well with referencing one protagonist rather than make different timelines.

    It’s also more like /your actions are you/ , not the AESTHETIC choice of gender. Not to mention SMT 1 , had the “destined partner” stuff, which would require some extensive work to change the genders there.

    But games aren’t an art form because clearly, the minds behind SMT did this because they’re sexist pigs who made a male protagonist to fulfill the “male power fantasy” of killing your friends and being betrayed of the typical cisgendered, straight white male. And didn’t do it with any purpose in the story whatsoever(SMT 1)

    It’s also a “representation” issue when all you care about is an almost purely aesthetic choice(an aesthetic choice can be made to fit with a setting) in this series while pretending that /you/ are the main character in any way /through/ that aesthetic choice, totally.

    I think SMT V or SMT VI(if these ever happen) could have a female protagonist, I would enjoy it a bit more to see what they’ll do + because that’s a nice change of pace. But they’re going to do something artistic with it rather than care about representation in a series that doesn’t treat female characters in a lazy way writing-wise.

    Reminder that there are no strong female characters in SMT somehow, and that the protagonist’s gender is really really important when the way you play the game doesn’t change and the quality of the representation of female characters will inherently improve because you get to play as “SOMEBODY YOU CAN MORE RELATE TO / FEELS LIKE IT’S MORE YOU” when your choices and actions shaped “you” in that game far more than “does this character match how I am IRL? And do they let me self-insert myself easily because I don’t get the point of the series?”

    • Highasthesky

    • Göran Isacson

      See, the thing is… not really?

      Like, Shin Megami Tensei II had a statue of the previous games protagonist in i t. Their actions mattered for the development of the wolrd in II, but in the end the developers went with one single interpretation of the previous games plot anyway. There’s nothing like the previous protagonists children, or books written by the protagonist that states that “he was ONLY able to save the world because he was a man, and if he had been a woman HOO BOY WOULD WE HAVE BEEN EFFED”. So what’s to say they can’t work around future discrepancies by just doing that again? Arguing that a female avatar shouldn’t be a choice simply because it may interfere with future titles doesn’t really work, because they’ve already proven they are more than willing to work around the previous games story and nobody really complains about that.

      And while it is true that it is ones actions that define the character… how is that an argument AGAINST female avatars? If it is only the actions that matter, not ones love interests, what does it matter if a large subsection of gamerdom gets the option to wear a skin with which they are familiar and comfortable in?

      You seem to be taking this discussion very personal, like an attack against Atlus, when all I’ve seen on this page are peope saying “hey, why CAN’T we have a female avatar”, not lambasting Atlus for having no strong female characters. In fact, some even point out that when they DO have female characters they easily become some of the most beloved in the franchise, ala the FemProtagonist of P3P. They’ve even said that they purposefully left the past of the Nocturne protagonist blank and unmentioned so that people could read whatever they wanted into the game (which yes COULD mean you just self-insert yourself and nothing really changes), so how would having the option to play a female demi-fiend really affect anything in that game? I just don’t really get the what you’re arguing about.

      • Sheep

        Yeah, no, you didn’t really get the point of what I was saying, the argument wasn’t AGAINST female avatars, it was simply explaining the reasoning of it.

        The “previous protagonists” stuff was to say , that there should only be one protagonist, not a gender option(I do hope to see a female protagonist later on)

        “what does it matter if a large subsection of gamerdom gets the option to wear a skin with which they are familiar and comfortable in?” It doesn’t matter, nor does it not not matter either, which is basically what I had said.

        SMT has never done it to ostracize females AT ALL. Trying to imply that a female protagonist should be done for the reasons stated, is downright close-minded to the actual game and what it’s done. A dual gender option is also a bad idea, but I could see them being able to do it. (IE I’m not saying THERE SHOULD ONLY BE MALES, just one or the other, or something outside that binary)

        “Arguing that a female avatar shouldn’t be a choice simply because it may interfere with future titles doesn’t really work, ” except that’s not what I said, again.

        I don’t really see it as that big an issue, because the protagonist isn’t an actual , y’know, “gendered” character at all, it’s not going to increase the representation of female characters in gaming, SMT has strong female characters regardless of the protagonist(and yes people have said this here before)

        It’s an aesthetic choice and I do hope I see a female protagonist in at some point / in the next game.

        The protagonist’s being blank slate =/= self-insert / self-insert through the gender of the character.

        PS: Nah, I can’t take a click-bait article personally at all. Sorry.

        • Göran Isacson

          I admit that I made a mistake there: you were presenting the reasons for why previous characters were male and I misread it as an attack against female avatars period. That was my fault.

          But I do think you’re taking this personally. All the hyperbolic arguments (nobody in these comments are saying the minds behind SMT are sexist pigs who wants to fulfill male power fantasys or crusading against them) and calling the article click-bait when it’s no different from any other “preview” article of Siliconeras interview which they’ve posted so far and that have received no complaints about being click bait made you seem so agressive and personally offended, the sort of rage that I usually only see from whiny people who don’t want no girls on the internet period, so I misread your intentions.

          But even so: I still don’t agree with your argument. You seem to believe that to be given the choice to have two different genders to choose from will somehow dilute the game and make it lesser due to the story being “watered down” to accomodate for the differences that would arise between a male and a female “skin-”choice, I presume? If that is the correct interpretation, I don’t think I can agree with it either. When I played Nocturne I really didn’t find anything about that very interesting game that would have been significantly different if you could have just chosen a female skin for the Demi-Fiend at the start. I just don’t get what would be lessened in any way if you had the simple option to choose. And if it’s possible in one game, say Mass Effect or Fire Emblem Awakening… what is to say that it wouldn’t be possible in another?

          No one here is on a crusade against Atlus. No one is saying they haven’t done well-written female characters. I just don’t understand why you are so set against the possibility of changing the skin of characters who are supposed to be what you make of them, and where your upset is coming from.

          • Sheep

            No it IS click-bait

            look at the title(though I might just be interpreting that wrong, I do not think so though) and then how the moderator commented quickly with their opinion, it’s also the 2nd top discussion on here by the way.

            Not to mention part of the motivation was to purposely draw a parallel between the Atelier series’s discussion, I find this dubious as well and pretty awful.

            Or maybe it was just an indirect way of making a statement, though I don’t necessarily agree with that kind of practice either.

            “that have received no complaints about being click bait made you seem so aggressive and personally offended” Hmm, I just dealt with the obvious amounts of possible misinformation n in the comments in the way I saw fit, not really personally offended when I agree with the sentiment wholeheartedly.

            I can see how you would read me as a “somebody whose angry who doesn’t want girls on the Internet” though. it’s the Internet so those seem to be a plenty, or maybe a vocal minority(hell even a majority) So I can see why would you think that.

            “You seem to believe that to be given the choice to have two different genders to choose from will somehow dilute the game and make it lesser due to the story being “watered down” to accommodate for the differences that would arise between a male and a female “skin-”choice, I presume?”

            No, that’s not what I’m saying. I’m saying there was a clear aesthetic choice made, the protagonist isn’t a self-insert in the way people think he/she is, judging from the comments here.

            See I do agree that the team can do a dual gender option, but they need to do it well due to how the story has worked in SMT. It’s not all that hard for them to do considering what they’re capable of.

            But it did have a purpose in the story with the sole protagonist, rather than two “perspectives / genders”

            Really I may have made a mistake there, because it wouldn’t be that hard to just meld the two nearly identical characters(male / female) , in terms of story, at the same time,

            I think they’d be able to convey far more with a sole protagonist

            But that’s just my personal opinion, I’m all for them doing / trying it of course, they’ve done it in IF (thought not SJ) so it is not out of the question for them to do it at all, especially with this interview.

            Comparisons to Mass Effect and FE:A aren’t really apt here, similar in genre, but otherwise almost completely different games(maybe not FE:A entirely) But I get your point.

            I think it’s a good option to explore for the Maniax Team or any developers / any other developer teams on mainline SMT.

            ” I just don’t understand why you are so set against the possibility of changing the skin of characters who are supposed to be what you make of them, and where your upset is coming from.”

            On a final note, I’ll say that SMT has been purposeful in its story, it has designed it for a sole character in ways, at the same time, I can see a dual gender option working here and it wouldn’t be difficult and perhaps really easy, especially with IF’s existence.

          • Göran Isacson

            Hmm. I guess that since I always mark “Newest” when it comes to showing comments, I didn’t really see that. Although now that I check out the “oldest” tag I see that puchinris, who I suppose is the person you’re referring to, comment lies below two whole “click to read more” buttons and is pretty well under a lot of other comments. I dunno, your theory just feels like you’re reading way too much into stuff. I will also admit that it doesn’t help that I’ve known and talked to puchinri many times here on this forum and she has always been respectful and kind in discussions with me, never stricken me as the mean-spirited or manipulative type. Whereas you are a perfect stranger who I haven’t even seen that much around this site, so I do not know your history with Siliconera, puchinri or what data you have to make these allegations, if you have seen it happen frequently or if it just came straight out of nowhere.

            So I guess what I’m saying is that it feels like you’re gunning for her and I’m instinctively drawn to defend her, which doesn’t really make for a very levelheaded discussion. I may be biased, but I just don’t see the conspiracy here, just like how I read her comment about Atelier as one little bit tacked on at the end of her post and not very important or noteworthy at all.

            “Hmm, I just dealt with the obvious amounts of possible misinformation n in the comments in the way I saw fit,”

            I think this could also be part of why I got such a bad impression of you- I saw none of these allegations in the comments I read, UNTIL you posted. Your post was the first to really raise these points and had a very negative tone to it, and I am far too used to internet whiners quickly using those kind of arguments as strawmen to shut down conversations instead of creating them. It made you come off as far more unpleasant than any argument that had been had in the threads thus far.

            “No, that’s not what I’m saying. I’m saying there was a clear aesthetic choice made, the protagonist isn’t a self-insert in the way people think he/she is, judging from the comments here.”

            Hmm. I guess this is where we come to a split. I admit that I have only played SMT (on a rom even…) and Nocturne on the PS2 to completion. I only got a little bit into SMT2, and have not played Strange Journey or 4. I guess that when I played those games, I really just didn’t see what you’re seeing. I know that in 1 you were supposed to be Adam reincarnated, but I don’t know how much of a difference it would’ve made to have you play the “Eve” role instead, heck considering that Eve messed with the apple having her switch places with the Adam-character could be real neat and blasphemous. But I will admit, THAT would have taken some work to create a different route in. But Nocturne, again… I just do not see it. And considering that the things I’ve heard about Strange Journey doesn’t really make it sound like it had 1′s whole “Eva and Adam” thing, I once more don’t really see the importance of the main character that is rigidly defined as being of one gender. I guess it just comes down to a difference of interpretation, as I really just don’t feel like there was anything in those stories that would’ve prevented a dual-gender option. Maybe I just don’t get it, it’s a possibility, but I just don’t see it.

  • Warboss Aohd

    We Orkz don’t care either way, as we are asexual fungi.

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