Grand Theft Auto Culture Changes

Also on Bloomberg (may require registration or subscription) is a profile of Rockstar Games, discussing the studio's progress at cleaning up its "frat boy" culture. These internal changes are also impacting both the future and the past of the Grand Theft Auto series. Word is: "Between the company’s new mandate and the 2019 departure of Dan Houser, who led creative direction on many previous Rockstar games, all signs suggest Grand Theft Auto VI will feel very different than its predecessor." The article quotes anonymous past and present employees saying the culture shift is real, but also discussing how the team is still working out how to operate under the new system. Here's more:
In the summer of 2020, after a police officer killed George Floyd, Rockstar Games quietly shelved a mode of play it had planned to release for its Grand Theft Auto Online game.

Called Cops ‘n’ Crooks, the mode was a twist on the children’s game where players organize into teams of good guys and bad guys, but seemed especially tone-deaf during the global reckoning over police violence. Senior executives at the company, concerned about how the narrative might be interpreted during a time of heightened skepticism and mistrust of American police, put it aside. They still haven’t made plans to bring it back, according to people familiar with development.

This was one of several politically sensitive actions Rockstar, a division of Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., has taken in recent years. The company removed transphobic jokes from the most recent console release of Grand Theft Auto V and significantly narrowed its gender pay gap. Rockstar’s next game, Grand Theft Auto VI, will include a playable female protagonist for the first time, according to people familiar with the game. The woman, who is Latina, will be one of a pair of leading characters in a story influenced by the bank robbers Bonnie and Clyde, the people said. Developers are also being cautious not to “punch down” by making jokes about marginalized groups, the people said, in contrast to previous games.

Moves like these once seemed unthinkable for a company whose best-selling franchise is a satirical depiction of America that involves playing gangsters who kill civilians and where women are mostly depicted as sex objects. Grand Theft Auto V was a nihilistic parody that threw insults at everything, from right-wing radio hosts to liberal politicians. Inside the company, the tone wasn’t much different. Rockstar employees described a workplace culture full of drinking, brawling and excursions to strip clubs. The company was an early symbol of an industry-wide problem of long hours at the office, known as crunch, in which staff were expected to be at their desks many nights and weekends in order to keep a game on schedule.
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Jul 30, 2022, 13:01
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Re: Lame. Jul 30, 2022, 13:01
Jul 30, 2022, 13:01
 
BigVlad wrote on Jul 28, 2022, 02:26:
As an example of how poisoned and stupid this word is, just look at the discourse on the new Thor movie, even before its release. I watch a lot of movies so I come across this stuff on YouTube. Why do they call it "woke"? Because a woman plays a prominent role. That's it. Do you really think that Terminator 1/2, Alien, and Aliens would not be called "woke" by the right if released today? If you're definition of "woke" is not "minority and/or women bad" then you probably should not be using that word, since that's overwhelmingly how it is being used nowadays.

Those movies sold very well and have always been very popular among men of every political stripe. Men today don't hate those movies for having a woman in the lead role. Show me one of these youtubes that says that a movie is woke solely because a woman is in the lead role. And let's see how many views it has.

As this video by a woman with 4.4 million views states:

"Turns out 50% of the population is female, and you know what? They're not going to see these movies or support these TV shows either [shows the Rotten Tomatoes audience scores for woke movies]. Is it because women hate women? No..."

EVERYTHING WRONG WITH WOKE CULTURE | and the impact on feminism (2021)
https://youtu.be/Nqmd4iU8J3k

In this video that has 2.6 million views, the Critical Drinker gives examples of female wokism in movies and how it actually is a disservice to women.

What Happened To Our Villains? | Critical Drinker
https://youtu.be/vnRP7SKzOgk

Critical Drinker: "The problem is that good villains seem to be a dying breed these days. The awesome antagonists that used to dominate the screen and push our heroes to the very limits of their endurance, are gradually being replaced by weak, flaccid, forgettable imitations, with none of the power an menace of their predecessors. And because they no longer present a challenge, there's no real payoff when they get defeated."

[He shows examples of how Kylo Ren is a second-rate Darth Vader in every way imaginable, as well as other villains of today Why? Because in this case when it comes to woke movies] "...one of the golden rules is that women are never allowed to lose to men at anything for any reason. Whether it's a physical fight, a test of skill or intelligence, or even a simple argument, pick basically any scenario where a woman gets pitted against a man, and I can pretty much guarantee you the woman will come out on top.

"...it creates a very obvious problem when your hero happens to be female and your villain male. Traditional storytelling requires the antagonist to start out stronger and more dangerous than the hero, forcing them to grow and improve themselves in some way, before finally prevailing at the end. But naturally, this process requires the man to be dominant in the early stages, and as we've already discussed, that's not allowed to happen anymore, even if it's just a temporary thing.

"....And what's really interesting is that the problem still exists, even if you reverse the roles. Take Thor: Ragnarök for example. The villain in that movie is a woman, which is perfectly fine at the beginning when she gets to kick Thor's ass, but it becomes a real problem near the finale when it's time for him to win. You definitely can't show Thor hammering a woman into the ground, because that brings up all kinds of unpleasant accusations of glorifying violence against women. So instead, the movie takes the best alternative, and has a third-party step in to win the battle for him. Notice how they carefully managed to side-step the uncomfortable issue of Thor defeating her in a fair fight. Just a little something to think about there.

"The point I'm making is that the reason people didn't warm to characters like Rey or Captain Marvel, isn't because of their gender, it's because everything is made so fucking easy for them that it's basically impossible to feel any empathy. It's the same exact problem with Ghostbusters, or Harley Quinn, or Charlie's Angels. If your heroes do nothing but plow their way through a collection of unthreatening, neutered enemies, then you'll never get your audience to care about their struggle, because they don't fucking have one.

"So what is the solution here? Well, ironically enough, the solution is equality. And I mean real equality, not the bullshit Hollywood version that makes one side artificially weaker just to make the other look superficially strong. If you want your female heroes to be respected equally, then you have to put them through equal struggles against worthy enemies. You need to stop nerfing your villains in a vain attempt to avoid offending people on social media."

This comment was edited on Jul 30, 2022, 13:17.
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