We get it, but chill on the “representation” in video games

Annnnnnnnd we’re done. That’s not a fact, and also has NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS THREAD.



Only Brick matches my criteria at all… and he is an awesome character, but he is obvious comic relief. They make fun of him for lacking in intelligence WAY to much, he isn’t a real leader nor a serious character in BL2 or BL3, Brick is supposed to be a joke, btw, the point that I was making in my original post.

The rest of the characters don’t fit at all.

Brick did have his moments though. Like when he confronted Roland at their reunion in BL2 and again Lilith in the Commander Lilith DLC. Brick has depth. (Haven’t got to meeting him in BL3 yet.)


Borderlands’ story is about subversion. Think about why that means they don’t put the typical cliche hero at the helm.


With the exception of Marcus, none of them are competant. Apparently people are saying Zane is pansexual, Rhys is bi and has basically become a damsel in distress, Vaughn… Really?

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Okay, long response incoming - plenty going on in this thread that I’d like to respond to.

Okay. Let me try and explain. There is a certain push, especially in media circles for ‘diversity’ - which does seem to be code for ‘non male, non straight, non white’. If you want evidence of this, an Apple employee was forced to apologize when she said that a room full of straight white people could be diverse, and was sacked.

This is not just about BL3. There are people - and you can see it in this thread - claiming that sexual orientation is not biological, and is a choice. And that being straight is not the correct choice.

This sort of stuff is what people are pushing back on. It’s definitely not a majority, but it’s a very load and surprisingly powerful minority that has a lot of gaming companies by the throat.

For example - just look at this post:

See what I mean?

Bingo. And yet…this sort of constructivism is the zeitgeist in a lot of academia right now. And it’s…nonsense.

Huh? For a long time, most main characters in games weren’t ‘straight white males’. They were animals, weird pixel things and robots/planes/aliens.

Didn’t they say ‘no more characters’ this time?

I think this was meant in the context of BL3.

There are people in this thread, and certainly in this industry who would definitely say that any straight, cis male main character is problematic…

Just look at the responses to other games. I can provide examples if you want.

The PCs aren’t ‘main’ characters. They are mostly a player surrogate.

It’s…not though. It’s incorrect, but how it is homophobic?

In BL3…maybe. But you need to look at it in the context of what is going on in the industry today. There is a definite strain of thought that diversity is, in and of itself, a good thing. And this can create some very strange situations and controversies. Just look at all the flak CDPR have received over Cyberpunk not being ‘progressive’ enough.

No, this is the wrong way to go about it. I don’t think anyone in this thread has a problem with LGBTQIAP or whatever the full acronym is now existing, and to say this is ludicrous.

What people have a problem with is this new mindset in the media that says:

  • Straight white men are problematic.
  • Diversity should be a goal in and of itself.
  • Diversity means non straight, non cis, non male.
  • Everything is a social construct and thus a choice.

This is what is getting pushback. And rightfully so.

Except that when you push ‘diversity’ to a certain degree, you are going to leave people out. The majority of people. Who will then be told that them being the majority is a problem in and of itself.

Except that this is a utopian fallacy. And as we’ve seen in Cyberpunk and some other games, this quickly becomes ‘even having a gender binary is deeply problematic’.

I’m an old fart too, but one who spends a lot of time in academic circles. I’ll try to explain.

It’s the current zeitgeist, growing out of a movement that can best be described as social-constructivism, growing out of a combination of Hegelist and Marxist thought. Essentially, it posits that all boundaries are bad, everything, including the idea of biological sex and gender is problematic and that anyone who isn’t straight, white and male is oppressed. It then follows the Marxist axiom that the oppressed have a right to hate and oppress their oppressors. Extend this out, and you have the modern climate in gaming - where any game featuring a straight white male protagonist is problematic.

Honestly, the Supmatto thing was pretty concerning too - and seldom mentioned.

And this is why you are seeing pushback. This whole idea of ‘fragile masculinity’. It’s acceptable to bash and deride straight men for being straight men, and any problem that straight men have with this is further evidence of ‘fragile masculinity’. It’s wonderfully designed Kafkatrap.


And I refuse to believe that this thread was even created in good faith. It’s been a troll from the start to get people fighting about it.


So, because OP doesn’t get his straight white hero to lead the charge, there’s a problem? When can a game exist without that? Sorry, not sorry.


It actually sort of does. The thread has gone on to the whole ‘being cis is problematic’ and ‘fragile masculinity’ tripe. The topic is now pretty damn broad.

RBG was being glib. And if you tip things the other way, in a few decades you are going to need to tip it back once again.

But I guess the oppressed have the right to oppress the oppressor…right?

Bingo. But as you can see from the general tenor of this thread, your inclusion is ‘problematic’ in and of itself. As we’ve seen from the Cyberpunk controversy, even the idea of a simple binary of ‘male’ and ‘female’ is now wrongthink

Always remember the mindset that this stuff is coming from. And read some Hegel, if you really want to know it’s origins.

The Frankfurt School was a mistake…

The majority of society is straight and cis-gendered, and every study that has attempted to disprove this is complete bunko.

I’m not sure what we are permitted to link here, but from what I’ve read, the majority of shooter fans are straight males. Which is what people like Anita Sarkeesian and Bob Chipman are constantly complaining about.

Actually, there is extremely strong evidence that not having a father in your life is an indicator of potential criminality and poverty, and that having a stable, two parent household is a greater advantage than private schooling.


I’ve only really seen, in this thread and others before it, people saying that a lack of them shouldn’t be while others say that the lack of them is. This seems to be an issue of people complaining about snowflakes but wanting to be snowflakes.

Again, I’ve not read anything that says this. Rather, I am getting that people feel there should be no “wrong” choice.

Um, no. Maybe the idea that it is possible is a utopian fallacy, but most ideals fall apart in real world practice. Generally speaking, it appears that rather than “equality” what people want is a chance to hold the whip. But we’re not really talking about equality here, I was using that sentence to say that we shouldn’t be playing tit for tat with game characters. If this isn’t a big deal then we should be able to dispense with scoreboards. Which you seem to understand given this next bit:

I doubt we completely disagree, but it feels as though some of the language being used is being taken without the context that makes it relevant. In the grand scheme of things, this is a non-issue being made into an issue, by folks who are so used to being ubiquitous that they have a hard time seeing themselves less than that.

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Where I live, if I walked in to a room full of only white people it would not be considered diverse. But that’s Canada for you… :canada:


Bottom line is pretty simple. What does it change to your life? I’m a white, goth straight metal head. I dont need representation in a game to feel good. If there is then its cool, ill be like : Hey, thats nice. Other than that I realy dont care about sexual orientation/look/what did they eat last night of any character in a game. What matters to me is the quality and the originality of the characters and for that, Borderlands always delivered.


what does it have to do with canada

I’m really not sure what Feculator described is a thing in academia. I’ve worked in 3 universities over a span of 10 years. In my experience ‘straight white males’ are not disadvantaged there (I’m actually grinning as I type that!), and there is no pressure for me to be ‘more attracted’ to any gender or person that I’m not. I haven’t seen publications arguing for that (there are plenty of weird and wonderful articles on sexual politics around but I wouldn’t say any have lodged the prevailing norms you describe). I know a lot of people who wish sexual harassment of younger, usually female students wasn’t a thing in universities - that’s much more of an issue… Of course, your experience may be different.

Unless by ‘constructivism’ you’re talking about the art movement started by Tatlin? I’m really interested in Russian revolutionary art, wish I knew more about it!

I haven’t really seen this in the thread.

And yes, people say things I disagree with all the time about ‘straight, cis male main character[s]’, and the word problematic gets thrown around too much in my opinion - I don’t see it much on the forums, fortunately, though the post I’m replying to is an exception!

I haven’t actually seen their hair choice criticised. I know you want to link stuff to wider issues, but the post you quoted was quite specific, and in response to the claim that female’s hair is too similar in the Borderlands games. I thought it was an odd point, made odder by the gender focus.

This seems a slightly mangled summary of some academic arguments that were very popular in the '80s. They’ve got loads of pushback since then. I’m not sure how it links to the thread at hand, i.e. whether or not too many gay people and women are represented in Borderlands 3.

If I’m reading your stance right, we share some of the same perspectives on post-structuralist trends… but I think bringing it up here may be giving those ideas more than they’re due. It seems quite likely that, for instance, Fl4k is a nonbinary character because their creator is non-binary, worked at Gearbox, and wanted to use their chance to write a character by representing an experience they identify with. I doubt the diehard Foucauldians who still haunt the halls of my uni had anything to do with that really!

Again, I thirst for linked evidence on how many fans of Borderlands are ‘able-bodied, cis-gendered, straight men, who display masculine traits’. Maybe they are. You’ll dig the academic concern for supported statements though.

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Thank you, nice read and respectful.

As if the people not fitting of your preferred look for society aren’t “all” humans, lol.

@Hattie, I’ll play.

It doesn’t matter what percentage of the player base is able-bodied, cis-gendered, straight men, who display masculine traits, this point is irrelevant to my real claim:

Why don’t you address my real claim:

I think that the writers of this game were trying to be inclusive to may different types of folks, while at the same time also trying to exclude able-bodied, cis-gendered, straight men, who display masculine traits.

In this case, the writers excluded, and think that they would admit it. It is pretty heavy handed.

Side thought: I believe that the writers of this game took a great risk by trying to start this, exact conversation… it baffles me that the mods insist on continuously interrupting in in this topic by locking or temporarily closing the dialogue. Just let if flow… if we cross a line give us our warning as established in the “Forum Rules”.

Because you’re a sane(probably) human.

Either VH made a joke that went over my head or he’s saying Canada is mainly white or something else. Don’t think about it that hard

looks at volderthread yeah these never end well