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Published on Aug 25, 2014
Content Warning: This educational episode contains graphic sexual and violent game footage.
This is the second episode exploring the Women as Background Decoration trope in video games. In this installment we expand our discussion to examine how sexualized female bodies often occupy a dual role as both sexual playthings and the perpetual victims of male violence.
The Women as Background Decoration trope which is the subset of largely insignificant non-playable female characters whose sexuality or victimhood is exploited as a way to infuse edgy, gritty or racy flavoring into game worlds. These sexually objectified female bodies are designed to function as environmental texture while titillating presumed straight male players. Sometimes they're created to be glorified furniture but they are frequently programmed as minimally interactive sex objects to be used and abused.
ABOUT THE SERIES The Tropes vs Women in Video Games project aims to examine the plot devices and patterns most often associated with female characters in gaming from a systemic, big picture perspective. This series will include critical analysis of many beloved games and characters, but remember that it is both possible (and even necessary) to simultaneously enjoy media while also being critical of it's more problematic or pernicious aspects. This video series is created by Anita Sarkeesian and the project was funded by 6968 awesome backers on Kickstarter.com
GAMES REFERENCED IN THIS EPISODE: Assassin’s Creed 2 (2009) Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood (2010) Bioshock (2007) Bioshock 2 (2010) Dead Island (2011) Dishonored (2012) Dragon Age: Origins (2009) Fable 2 (2008) Far Cry 3 (2012) God of War 3 (2008) Grand Theft Auto IV (2008) Grand Theft Auto V (2013) Hitman: Absolution (2012) Hitman: Blood Money (2006) Kane & Lynch (2007) L.A. Noire (2011) Mafia II: Joe’s Adventures (2010) Metro: Last Light (2013) No More Heroes (2008) Papo & Yo (2012) Prototype (2009) Red Dead Redemption (2010) Saints Row (2006) Super Mario Galaxy 2 (2010) The Darkness II (2012) The Witcher (2007) The Witcher 2 (2011) Thief (2014) Watch Dogs (2014)
FAIR USE The multimedia clips included in this video constitute a 'fair use' of any copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of U.S. Copyright law which allows for criticism, comment and scholarship.
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