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DarrenG

New player - does the cultural appropriation bother anyone else?

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12 minutes ago, LeperColony said:

Yes, this is the standard refrain.  And there's some truth to it.  Playing a game with violence is not going to make you violent.  But playing a game with short skirts is not going to make you promiscuous.  In fact, as numerous studies have proven, abstinence-only education and pretending sex doesn't exist is ineffective.  That's one reason why the Bible Belt consistently has among the highest (and often the highest) rates of divorce, teen pregnancy and abortion in the United States.  

As you noted, images have power.  Sex and violence are two of the most provocative images there are.  But the reality is you've chosen to desensitize yourself to one (or hypersensitize yourself to the other).  Now, to be sure, you are entirely within your rights to define your own comfort levels.  And to base those sentiments on whatever value systems or justifications as you find prudent. 

Although I feel it's important to point out that you are not calling for the models you personally dislike to be banned, and you're not asserting an objective issue with them, but rather you are articulating why your subjective experience with them is negative.  In other words, you're not trying to press your assessment on other people.  That's different than the cultural appropriation argument, because the underlying assertion there is that if the models indeed are culturally exploitative, then they are in an objective sense and should be changed or eliminated.

To the extent I have any issue with the Malifaux models, it's two fold.  One, I think minority groups are shown as "model minorities," which is a dynamic that is less harmful than others to be sure, but it's still less-than-ideal.  And I also take issue with giving the Edwardian period a pass by skating over the very real oppression of racial, gender, sexual orientations, religious and cultural groups.

For instance, someone in the Explorer's Society forum suggested a British explorer and African porter type master/totem duo.  That's a team that will probably never get made, because of obvious concerns with the imagery.  But to me, rather than omitting it and pretending the world of Malifaux doesn't see color, I would be more proud to support a company that did root these issues in the setting.

You have typed a lot to parse through. I will try to contribute to each, likely insufficiently.

I have given some deal of thought in the past to my own perspective, and the various factors that have likely contributed to its development, and I have come to the conclusion that the only objective fact about the matter regarding the issue is that I personally have a problem with it. Various people groups have their own views on the matters of sex and violence, and their respective places in media and entertainment, and I find it unlikely that I have stumbled upon some grand truth that God happened to forgo writing in Scripture that must be preached to the masses. More likely, my perspective was formed by my immediate family, and that perspective will no doubt be impressed upon my children. I pray I adequately teach them they can have an opinion without beating someone over the head with it. (As an aside, the Bible Belt does have a very unhealthy view of sex... I suggest a daily reading of Song of Songs.)

I cannot say much about your perspective regarding the brushing-over of the... less digestible... parts of the time period except that I agree 100%. I know not why the range of Malifaux models have been designed thus far, but I hope that broader market appeal hasn't constrained any designer's desire to portray the time period's nitty gritty details because it is possible to portray realism respectfully. Ultimately though, I believe Wyrd should design the game however they want to and I will likely keep supporting them in the future, barring something truly Wyrd happening.

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58 minutes ago, LeperColony said:

For instance, someone in the Explorer's Society forum suggested a British explorer and African porter type master/totem duo.  That's a team that will probably never get made, because of obvious concerns with the imagery.  But to me, rather than omitting it and pretending the world of Malifaux doesn't see color, I would be more proud to support a company that did root these issues in the setting.

My money is now on Wyrd doing the exact opposite and making the porter British just to mess with everyone. All the stories involve some colour but off the top of my head I don't think they are ever done in a negative light. With any creative work  that has some bases in reality there is always going to be some comparison. For myself I see the whole setting as a fair twist on our reality with some common tropes that make it relatable to the masses.

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4 hours ago, Ludvig said:

I avoided getting Nekima because of her sculpt but now that Lilith was kicked out of tournament play I felt forced to pick Nekima up since I still want to play Nephilim. I won't be doing any demos with her though. 

 

Okay so, besides Barbaros, not even the dude Nephilim really wear much of anything. Battle lingerie is, as dumb as that sounds, actually *more* on theme than normie clothes. It was always weird that we had a savage wilderness demon tribe led by a woman who didn't visually match the rest of her group. Sure, Lilith had this whole "Blend in with the humans so I can do Lilith things" but Nekima has been more or less gung ho about slaughtering humans without any need for disguise and trickery. I think it's actually weird that the M3e sculpt has clothes when the rest of her models, new sculpts included, are still sporting loincloths, weird bird hats, and in Hayreddin's case, a "Hey kids" trenchcoat. At best we had a sheer nightgown and a BDSM suit. We exiled Barbaros because he thought armor was cool but we don't, so he can't sit with us. 
Also Nekima's "The True Mother" and I'm sure there's some Freudian reasoning as to why that further proves that M1e Nekima is true Nekima. 

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15 hours ago, LeperColony said:

For instance, someone in the Explorer's Society forum suggested a British explorer and African porter type master/totem duo.  That's a team that will probably never get made, because of obvious concerns with the imagery.  But to me, rather than omitting it and pretending the world of Malifaux doesn't see color, I would be more proud to support a company that did root these issues in the setting.

that's very pitty. suppose people should understand that the epoch in malifaux world is about racial oppression and the other things. 
i'm voting against sterilized world)

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21 minutes ago, le_wahou said:

As a french player, I am offended by this game. There is no (not yet ?) cheese eating surrender monkeys in Malifaux. :)

50 mm Severe Hazardous (Burning+1) Delicious Fondue Markers... make it happen!!

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31 minutes ago, Champignon said:

that's very pitty. suppose people should understand that the epoch in malifaux world is about racial oppression and the other things. 
i'm voting against sterilized world)

I'd be surprised if that pair see the light... there are other Master/totems with that Master + Slave/prisioner theme: LadyJ, Parker, Von Schtook... but those aren't that likely to hurt sensitivities. Maybe with a modeling with a more caricatured british and where the African looks awesome and more like a guide might work... We'll see.

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17 minutes ago, AndreyF said:

6 pages and noone is offended by magic and witchcraft in Malifaux. No true Christians here?

There's a reason I played Sonnia for a long time. Purge the non-believers! 😉

@Kharnage I don't really mind the model itself, I procured the metal Nekima for obvious reasons. I just don't need women around me giving me even weirder looks when they come across my hobby stuff for whatever reason. I don't want Kingdom Death to be the first thing that shows up when people Google miniature games either even if I kind of dig many of the minis personally. 

 

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I have been reading history books about the 19th century and about the British Empire in general. I am in no way an expert but this brought a lot of nuance to my reading of the historical "canon".

The colonial empires were often only so by names on maps and the predominance of the "white" civilisation is also to be nuanced. The control over the imperial territories was often only limited to the coastal areas and depended a lot on the local elites.

The British army also depended on the Indian troops. The British were able to mount commando missions in Africa using Indian troops for example. The world was a lot more cosmopolitan in the 19th century than we depict it in our own old TV shows full of the folklore of the 100% white western civilisation. I think we glorified it in the past for our own "white" supremacy propaganda.

Racial prejudices existed and ordinary racism was very common (see how the Jews were depicted in some newspapers for example). I don't think this needs to be forgotten, if only to emphasize how, during the recent years, we see a resurgence of it in some countries. So I am not a fan of the sterilized world introduced by modern day fictions.

That being said, it is interesting to see that some of the behaviours of the 19th century western people was due to the technological advance of the West over some parts of the world. The Europeans had mastered wide range navigation, had undertaken to widely teach their population how to read and write (with more or less success), entertained high philisophical and conceptual discussions, had developped technologies far beyond what a lot of people in the south of the African continent experienced. It is no surprise to see Livingstone being baffled by the behaviour of the African tribesmen and the people of his age to think that they are from different species alltogether. We all know this assumption is wrong TODAY but we should not judge the actions of the past with our modern values and knowledge.

However, I can understand why game designers would want to avoid tackling these issues in what  is essentially a game with plastic toys and not a political statement.

I can understand why stereotypes could be disturbing. For example, having spent a lot of time in Asia, I don't like the mixing up of Japan and China into one whole faction as I think the 2 countries are vastly different. But it's an imaginary world so I don't mind that much.

I personally gained an interest in Asia by watching TV shows and reading comics during my youth that used those same stereotypes and this lead me to dig up more information about the "real" cultures involved. Sometimes a bit of stereotype can help inducing people into learning more about other countries/civilisations and this is not a bad thing imho.

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52 minutes ago, Nathan Caroland said:

It's a game. 

If I wanted true world bias, bullshit and politics, it would be something completely different, and to be honest, wouldn't grab my attention in the least. Sure, we take bits and pieces of it that we like, or want to expand upon, some with carte blanche, others with complete and utter ignorance that turned into a happy hap stance or a wince after the fact. We try not to offend folks outright, but at the same time, not going out of our way completely not to either as quite bluntly people get offended just by someone else breathing air they thing belongs to them these days. 

I'm of the opinion that games are there to be enjoyed. If you don't enjoy it, or find something that is truly offensive and intolerable to you, then find another outlet, avenue, or avoid altogether if it causes someones blood pressure to fluctuate terribly. Are there things that I would do differently in hindsight - yeah, probably - but there are just as many things that I'll happily troll for good fun because of my rather dark sense of humor. Believe me, the guys and gals here keep me in check ...  :)

Hell, when people kept pushing for a nude female way back in the day, they got topless Zoraida for their trouble ...

I'm glad you chimed in. This confirmed for me the ethos you have when designing the game, and as I said, I respect the way you've gone about things. Anyone who is being serious on the subject of things that people might be offended by isn't going to tell you never to implement those things. They'll just say, hey, be careful when you do. And Wyrd is a company that doesn't just do these things on a whim, even if Nathan would like to sometimes, as he's said. And that is very respectable.

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3 hours ago, Nathan Caroland said:

Hell, when people kept pushing for a nude female way back in the day, they got topless Zoraida for their trouble ...

Haha, so THAT particular model have a reason... you'd make a great djinn 😂

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5 minutes ago, Ogid said:

Well, Geryons just got released... Jackpot! 3 nudes in 1!

I wouldn't dare to assume those things' genders. They seem like they would get mad if I did.

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22 minutes ago, Myyrä said:

I wouldn't dare to assume those things' genders. They seem like they would get mad if I did.

They are very sensitive beings actually, the beauty is inside... and they look for it! It's a pity they aren't that good with metaphors... they take that a bit too literally.

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