I too think that choice is the most important aspect that sets games apart from any other art form. And I think it’s exactly this aspect which non-gamers don’t understand. I remember a news report about „violent videogames“ after a school-shooting, where a scene from Hitman Contracts was shown in which the player was shooting the other patients/test-subjects. Then the moderator said „Pointless killing in the sanatorium is the goal of the game here.“
Of course that’s an insolent lie, but it also points out the misunderstanding many people have about games, namely that you don‘t have to do everything you can do.
Games give you – through their interactivity – the freedom to deviate from paths given to you by the designers. People, who are used to passively consume movies where your experience more or less stays the same no matter how often you watch it, seem to transfer this understanding to videogames and can’t understand that this freedom to choose your path, your narrative and your experience overall, are what makes games special and interesting.
Exactly. But this „social justice“ nonsense is not only a problem in the gaming industry. Many people are over-compensating because they’re feeling guilty for the deeds of their ancestors and start seeing racism or sexism everywhere.
It are the people who are constantly outraged about alleged insensitivities towards minorities, women, black people etc., who are keeping this topic alive. They think that you have to tell people non-stop how awful and bad racism and sexism are and that they should feel guilty.
But the solution is simple, just listen to this interview with Morgan Freeman:
Interviewer: „How do we gonna get rid of racsim?“ Freeman: „Don’t talk about it!“
A game that, in my opinion, does this right for example is Horizon Zero Dawn. There is no special emphasis on Aloy, the protagonist, being a woman and her sexuality isn’t explored at all. Instead you’re just playing a strong, self-confident and determined individual, who just happens to be female. That’s why she doesn’t come across like one of those obnoxious quota-women.
Battlefield 5 on the other hand sparked a controversy, not because you can play as a female soldier in WW2 and there are so many sexist asshole-gamers, but because most people think that there were no female soldiers back then (I believed that too). Most people wouldn’t have a problem to be corrected in this believe, but because everything gets politicized, because the smallest, insignificant things get analyzed to death so they adhere to the gender-equality-madness, because “progressives” always make a fuss when a gender-quota isn’t exactly 50/50, all that is why many people who actually are for gender- or racial-equality, are so annoyed that they see SJW-agitation everywhere and feel lectured. That something so insignicant like a woman on a videogame-cover has such huge effects only shows how progressives/SJWs/leftists or whatever you wanna call them, are creating their own enemies.
Another reason people get furious about this whole topic are articles like this (emphasis mine):
The epic launch trailer for the latest shooter was derailed by an army of ignoramuses last week who objected to the arrival of women soldiers, which they wrongly claimed was historically inaccurate.
The author doesn’t consider people actually being concerned about historical accuracy or thinking the portrayal of female soldiers at WW2’s frontlines feel kind of forced. Instead he calls the critics part of an army, which invokes the impression of a large, scary mass of mindless drones.
This is a relative harmless example, but it is this arrogant, self-righteous and aggressive propaganda of alleged “diversity” that has so many people offended.