About the sexualization of this and future games.

Demanding is also not me as well, I'm more go with the flow. Relating to nostalgia, I'm realizing that as I grow, there are some aspects I won't want to move on from, and that's OK. Yet I'm always open to new things and glad for them. I'm honestly glad to have been born in the time period I was in. Yet I'll hold some desires from years before, while possibly gaining new ones if I like them more than that desire. So my response to moving on is that I'd only move on if I had the desire to.

@Temuorin said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Lintaur said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

Why should Japan bow down to hilariously crappy western puritan values?

Because of the local laws/regulations? The game is running in the US so it has to comply with the local laws of what is ok to put in the game and what's not. I'm afraid that it's not up to the company.

And which laws are those, may I ask?

I don't have much details but the US has a strong regulation on child pornography and comparing to single player games, it's harder for online games to control over sharing and promoting child pornography once some children related element implemented in the game. As a online platform, I believe the game is liable for sharing and promoting child pornography whereas for single player games, players have to find another media to share those information if they want to. So when it comes to censorship, it's reasonable for the companies running online games to play safe if they don't want to get into troubles in the future. Please consult lawyers on this topic if you are interested in.

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Temuorin said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Lintaur said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

Why should Japan bow down to hilariously crappy western puritan values?

Because of the local laws/regulations? The game is running in the US so it has to comply with the local laws of what is ok to put in the game and what's not. I'm afraid that it's not up to the company.

And which laws are those, may I ask?

I don't have much details but the US has a strong regulation on child pornography and comparing to single player games, it's harder for online games to control over sharing and promoting child pornography once some children related element implemented in the game. As a online platform, I believe the game is liable for sharing and promoting child pornography whereas for single player games, players have to find another media to share those information if they want to. So when it comes to censorship, it's reasonable for the companies running online games to play safe if they don't want to get into troubles in the future. Please consult lawyers on this topic if you are interested in.

All I'm hearing is "Lalafell and Azerothian gnomes don't exist." (I found these to use as examples on google image search btw. Even if I wanted to do this (which I do not), I don't have the glams or transmog to do so with) ffxi_ffxiv_swimsuit_taru_lalafell.jpg DueujtBXQAAaHhZ.jpg

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Temuorin said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Lintaur said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

Why should Japan bow down to hilariously crappy western puritan values?

Because of the local laws/regulations? The game is running in the US so it has to comply with the local laws of what is ok to put in the game and what's not. I'm afraid that it's not up to the company.

And which laws are those, may I ask?

I don't have much details but the US has a strong regulation on child pornography and comparing to single player games, it's harder for online games to control over sharing and promoting child pornography once some children related element implemented in the game. As a online platform, I believe the game is liable for sharing and promoting child pornography whereas for single player games, players have to find another media to share those information if they want to. So when it comes to censorship, it's reasonable for the companies running online games to play safe if they don't want to get into troubles in the future. Please consult lawyers on this topic if you are interested in.

There is actually a precedent for Sega to not be liable; at least under US law.

In Ashcroft v. Free Speech Coalition, in the ruling it stated:

The Act does not cover drawings, cartoons, sculptures, and paintings that depict youthful-looking persons in sexual poses; it supplies an affirmative defense to persons who disseminate visual depictions involving adults who may appear to be children, provided that the depictions are not promoted or presented as child pornography, 18 U.S.C. 2252A(c) (Supp. V 1999); and the Act does not apply to visual materials in which sexually explicit conduct by children is understood to be taking place, as long as the sexually explicit conduct is not itself visually depicted.

The act referring to the Child Pornography Prevention Act of 1996.

PSO2 does not promote or present itself as child pornography, which, following the precedent set by this Supreme Court Case, means it shouldn't run afoul of any US laws that I am aware of.

Furthermore, by legal definition, a child is anyone under the age of majority. For the US, this is 18 years of age. Which means, PSO2 should already be breaking these laws if they applied to the game; as the minimum age for an Arks Operative is 16, thus your character can, by game lore, be as young as 16, making them a minor under US law. The current height limitations still allow the creation of loli-type characters as well; the minimum is still rather short.

There are also other games that go further than what PSO2 does. Series like Senran Kagura for example, sexualize their characters far more than what PSO2 does, and a number of them are under the age of 18. There is even a character that is clearly designed to be a loli, Mirai. The only platform in which these games are censored is Sony's, all other platforms have these games completely uncensored, as they originally were in Japan.

If physical appearances are what matters, wouldn't Marie Rose from the Dead or Alive run afoul of these laws? She's the loli character of that series and is a character in the Dead or Alive Xtreme spin-off series.

So we already have situations where if the law is an issue, other games should be affected by it yet are not for some reason.

However, as we can see in Ashcroft v. Free Speech Coalition,there is a precedent for the law to not apply to these games or PSO2.

There are a few games that have client-side filter options for things, world of warships being one example I can think of. If you want a more "authentic" or "immersive" experience, you can turn off the silly, anime and gacha game crossover skins (for example the game has some camo patterns themed off the mobile game azur lane) on your client and just show default ones instead.

There's another game coming out (hopefully anyway) that plans to do the same thing, while also implementing shall we say suggestive attire and I would assume emotes in a similar fashion. The plan is to have a client-side filter for specific skins so you don't see them in-game, with either a default one or one you specify replacing the filtered skins. Everyone gets what they want (or don't). No reason this system couldn't apply to skins and emotes if you want a more "pure" ARKS experience in PSO2, apart from the actual effort in implementing it that is. Could be a couple lines of code, could be thousands. I have no idea, I imagine it's probably not even worth the effort for the developers to implement this late in the game's life (keeping in mind it came out many years ago in Japan and we're rushing through everything solely to catch up in time for the NGS launch).

Should we remove this sort of thing entirely? No. The demand for it is very real, and it sells. Should we remove it from existing games that have it? Again, no. That would quite literally kill any game that tried it overnight. Should games going forward have more client-side options than just "don't play lol"? Absolutely. A client-side skin (and emote) filter would work wonders. People that don't want to see certain things can simply turn them off, while people that do can leave them. You'd still get people crying about how they have to turn it on/off (in much the same vein as we get people crying about having to block people and demanding they be banned for trolling in chat or whatever instead of just you know, blocking the offending individual), but it's a far better option than trying to pander to one group, or none of them. Thing is, if you pander one way, it will never be enough AND you alienate the entire "other side". If you refuse to do anything about it at all, you risk losing the group opposing whatever it was you're leaving alone. A compromise like this will of course have people on both sides leaving, whining and threatening to leave, but not nearly as many as other options that have been attempted in the past. Some just want to show off their character, would feel that they're being denied, and leave/cry/threaten to leave. Others don't like it and refuse to accept the fact that other people do and would do the same. I imagine the vast majority would leave the filters alone or tune what they want and enjoy the game. Although I think that same group is more often than not able to do so with or without the filters or often more-than-merely-suggestive costumes. Like we already see in PSO2.

@Raptor091288 Agreed. Sure, it's never a perfect world, and yes some people do want others to fix their eyes on them, even if the other party don't want to. Don't know how many but there are. It's the case of one person having a right to express, and the other person having a right to choose if they want to see that expression or not. As a case of unstoppable force vs unmovable wall, which right is stronger in such scenario?

@Archetype-Luna Right, we can always find cases where the games you mentioned exist. It's very likely that we have laws on both sides where people could file lawsuits against companies and companies could defend themselves. But I guess the true question we have here is "Why is PSO2 not like the games where child-like character creation is allowed?"

This is my personal opinion: child-like character (loli/shota) is a gray zone and it's really hard to justify the intention behind creating a child-like character especially with those lewd outfits. I still think that the company may want some censorship as legal reasons to defend itself/pass some regulations because this censorship was added during localization in the US. I'm not sure if we have some official replies on why not allow child-like character creation in PSO2 NA but I'm pretty ok with this censorship. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Archetype-Luna Right, we can always find cases where the games you mentioned exist. It's very likely that we have laws on both sides where people could file lawsuits against companies and companies could defend themselves. But I guess the true question we have here is "Why is PSO2 not like the games where child-like character creation is allowed?"

This is my personal opinion: child-like character (loli/shota) is a gray zone and it's really hard to justify the intention behind creating a child-like character especially with those lewd outfits. I still think that the company may want some censorship as legal reasons to defend itself/pass some regulations because this censorship was added during localization in the US. I'm not sure if we have some official replies on why not allow child-like character creation in PSO2 NA but I'm pretty ok with this censorship. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I find the ruling pretty clear:

The Act does not cover drawings, cartoons, sculptures, and paintings that depict youthful-looking persons in sexual poses; it supplies an affirmative defense to persons who disseminate visual depictions involving adults who may appear to be children, provided that the depictions are not promoted or presented as child pornography, 18 U.S.C. 2252A(c) (Supp. V 1999); and the Act does not apply to visual materials in which sexually explicit conduct by children is understood to be taking place, as long as the sexually explicit conduct is not itself visually depicted.

As long as the company is not presenting or promoting the media as child pornography, they should be good. After all, the standard is innocent until proven guilty, meaning it must be proven that Sega is trying to present or promote child pornography. Companies have always self-censored out of paranoia, when such censorship is unnecessary. My issue with censorship is that once it starts, it becomes a slippery slope that causes more censorship to be added unless something is done. Like I could have lived with just the height restrictions, but then they removed a story cutscene (one that you could barely call risque if even), which is where I especially draw the line.

@Nick2703 said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

@Archetype-Luna Right, we can always find cases where the games you mentioned exist. It's very likely that we have laws on both sides where people could file lawsuits against companies and companies could defend themselves. But I guess the true question we have here is "Why is PSO2 not like the games where child-like character creation is allowed?"

This is my personal opinion: child-like character (loli/shota) is a gray zone and it's really hard to justify the intention behind creating a child-like character especially with those lewd outfits. I still think that the company may want some censorship as legal reasons to defend itself/pass some regulations because this censorship was added during localization in the US. I'm not sure if we have some official replies on why not allow child-like character creation in PSO2 NA but I'm pretty ok with this censorship. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I believe the main reason is that most of the other games where players can create child like characters don't pair them with things like the chair and pole dances. Those specific super risque animations may be a sort of "last straw" thing that I suppose some vocal sector of the NA population may find completely improper.

I mean, Tera and Blade and Soul allow small, child like characters that show a lot of skin, but nowhere in those games can you get those characters to play improper animations. All of Tera's Elin animations are very tame, no matter how much skin the character is showing, for example. You won't find an Elin dancing provocatively (unless the user added outside mods, that is). Same with BnS and perhaps other games. So I really believe the current restriction is a direct result of adding those specific emotes, which is stuff you don't see on every game out there. And it's easy to see how restricting the height was more profitable than removing those emotes.

@ZorokiHanuke Tera is a funny one. I played it when it first launched and people were up in arms about Elin censorship. Rightfully so. I decided to have a look to see if it's still bad because I remember they finally ended up promoting Elin rather than trying to hide it when they advertised the game after a period of time. Early on they were trying to hide Elin as much as possible and promote the other races as the "face" of the title.

I found this post on reddit after searching for Tera censorship and was surprised to find a thread asking if Elins were still censored. Apparently they have been slowly patching it out and have stopped censoring all new outfits released for Elin.

"All of the original armor sets for elin were modified for the NA/EU version of the game to basically copy/paste shorts and other stuff onto them to cover them up. Basically EME and the EU publisher had this vision that the game was going to be huge like WoW, and were worried about a PR/Media disaster because of Elins. There was a ton of drama over this. The NA publisher(EME) just played a silent approach, banning discussion on the topic. The EU publisher even straight up insulted their playerbase, claiming that any elin players upset with the censorship were "unsavory users" that they didn't want in the game.

Anyways, after they launched they both ended up selling uncensored costumes that are 100x more inappropriate than the original armor sets that were censored.

They slowly turned it off to test the waters and realized that no one actually cares and the censorship was a solution in search of a problem."

Basically in the end removing the censorship wasn't that big of a deal after all and game companies should always cater to all the fans since they are the ones who will stick around.

This is obviously an old article but it has some important paragraphs in there which still hold true.

https://www.oneangrygamer.net/2015/12/the-curious-case-of-tera-onlines-censorship/3146/

"It may seem “not cool” to the denizens of Rock, Paper, Shotgun, but the Elins and their cash shop costumes turned out to be one of the very things that saved TERA Online as a free-to-play MMO and allowed it to financially stay afloat. As bizarre as that sounds, it’s the truth."

"Bluehole Studios’ former producer, Kim Nak Heong, explained how the popularity of the Elin race in the game is what made TERA Online work as a free-to-play MMO."

"We honestly didn’t expect Elins to be this popular. At first, we focused mostly on Castanics. Because we were targeting the global audience, we needed something that would be appealing in the overseas. So from the developer’s perspective, Castanics were fitting for that role. This is why Castanics were used as the main focus for advertising in the first few trailers."

I feel like something can be learned here for all publishers. I've played a lot of MMOs in my time and EVERY single one has had MASSIVE push back on censorship of the game. This usually revolved around chopping up/modifying the story for a western audience or censoring outfits and censoring smaller characters.

@ZorokiHanuke said in About the sexualization of this and future games.:

I mean, Tera and Blade and Soul allow small, child like characters that show a lot of skin, but nowhere in those games can you get those characters to play improper animations

As I mentioned in another thread, Lalafell in FFXIV can do the sultry "Bees Knees" dance emote which is based on a dance seen in a strip club called "The Beehive" (obviously based on the Honey Bee Inn from FFVII) which has pole dancers.

It's not long now before Lalas can do pole dances too...

@Mattwo7 Yeah, I saw that post and the video you linked. And in that video there's a lala playing that emote. Yes, call me an hypocrite if that needs to be stated, but at least from what I saw, that lala wasn't dancing in such an improper manner. Now, wouldn't saying "it's not long for lalas to do pole dances too" be jumping the gun a wee bit? Does that game even have such extra risque emotes for other races? I don't play it so I don't know. But what I know is that I'm aware my likes and morals do walk an extra fine line on where I think something is ok for me and what's crossing it. Not everything I practice is 100% based on the morals of others, or the collective culture based morals of the West.

@ZorokiHanuke The video I linked video mentions that male characters have a "more classy" dance and that was a male Lalafell. It also mentioned that female Lalafells in fact have the same dance as the other female characters.

I think it's worth noting Naoki Yoshida mains a female Lalafell and Lalafell happens to be his favorite race in the game. He doesn't seem like the sort that would allow anything related to them to get censored. I mean they sure as heck didn't censor the skimpy outfits as I showed a few posts in this thread back.

@Mattwo7 So basically your argument is, if it's in that game, it can be here as well? I mean, going for as simple as I can compress it.

Now, my own take on it is, since this thread, as big as it may have become and with as many statements about law and many other interesting and super informative things, I cannot hide nor will make any attempt to hide it (it was posted in the first page after all), that this is all about my own views. It is why I stated I was well ok with people disagreeing, since this isn't about laws or the morals of others. This is all, as I admit selfishly (something I see very few people out there do when creating threads like this), that it is about what I see as ok and what I see as drawing too far.

Because I do believe that while culture is good and all that, people should think more for themselves instead of just blindly following what the powerful guy atop the economic food chain and those on the government say about what we should call moral or not. So if I find it wrong here, I may find it as wrong over there. Now I haven't actually seen the female lala doing the female dance on one of those outfits you mention... And based on what you say, it's an image best not uploaded into my brain.

And again since it begs repeating. I'm not pushing my own morals into anyone. In fact I vouch for people finding what they really feel it's best for them. I'm just stating things as I see them, how i see them.

@ZorokiHanuke You're not even the one who brought up the law in the first place, that was Nick and Nick seems to have backed off after being thoroughly debunked.

Ultimately it doesn't matter what we think as when it comes to the law, there's not a whole lot the average citizen can do except vote on regulations, which isn't quite the same thing and those regulations can not be drafted up by them. After all, USA is not a democracy, nor its people properly represented in any meaningful way, at least not anymore, maybe it used to be different but I have my doubts.