A Letter to Blizzard Regarding Rape

Content warning: This letter is going to talk pretty openly and specifically about rape, sexual assault and coercive sexual acts. If this is triggering, please skip this post. 

The only thing I thought when people started “speculating” that Y’rel might be Garona’s mother somehow in Darkest Timeline Draenor was, “Jesus christ, not again.” Despite the fact that I don’t find that story plausible given what I saw in the Warlords demo (if anything, it’d be Y’rel’s sister), the content potentially provided would be all too familiar. It’s really been a huge bugbear of my Warcraft career that so much of the game and tie-in books have introduced a lot of dark, sexually violent content.  Given Warcraft’s announcements that AU!Draenor would be more dark and “savage”, I am terrified if that means we’re going to return to even more of the hints of grimdark, gritty “realism” we’ve seen pop up in WoW since around Wrath. Why do I believe that this is going to involve rape and sexual violence? Look at the setting and look at what things we’ve encountered before in the Warcraft universe. Most of it has never been explicitly shown or described (thank god) but it doesn’t take much thought to see what has been going on in-between the lines, or hidden behind the veil of euphemistic language.

So yes, if you’ve never thought about it at great length before, here is what I’m saying: Warcraft has a rape problem. It’s not immediate, it’s not usually happening to characters in the game but it’s there, implied, talked around and gestured at vaguely. Forced pregnancy or attempts at forced breeding happening to Alexstrasza and Kirygosa, other red dragons? That’s rape. Mind-controlled sex slaves in Black Temple? Rape. Keristrasza being forcefully taken as a consort for Malygos? That’s rape (And we kill her later too.) Half-orc and -draenei children being born out of prisoner camps? Probably rape (Inmate and guard relations are not consensual.)  Mogu quests where they tell their buddies to “have their way” with us as prisoners? It might not have been intended that way, but that is euphemistic language for rape as well.

I’m so mad about this, if you couldn’t tell.

It’s really hard as a rape and sexual assault survivor to look at a fantasy world I have spent almost 10 years inhabiting still have darkness like this lurking around the corners. More than anything else that’s problematic in the game (and there is quite a few things), I have a hard time dealing with yet another potential fantasy world that Blizzard has concocted where I might once again have to face a reality where Warcraft has rape victims in it. It’s a huge trope and motif in fantasy, particularly of the more “grimdark” or gritty variety. It is a conceit where authors say that it makes the world more “realistic” and therefore, by their logic, better. In a worse case scenario, some authors and writers (a lot of whom have never experienced this) even use it as a cheap “this is how we break a woman down before we build her back up to be strong” trope. Or they joke about it as a metaphor without concern that this is someone’s life they are talking about. Rape is not a fantasy concept. It is not some far-off happenstance because we live in a just world where it stopped existing. Rapists go free. Rapists do it without concern or even recognizing that they are responsible. Some of us have to live or see or be near people who have raped us. A lot of times, rapists are people who have a lot of power over others. The list goes on. It is very fully a reality that many, many people live with. As someone who lives in this reality perpetually, where I’m never ever going to be quite safe no matter where I go, I could do less of that and more with a fluffy, lighter fantasy world where maybe my character would be considered safe. Not even due to the fact that she has magic and anyone trying something like that would easily be burned alive, but just due to the fact that rape and coercion wouldn’t even exist.  (While we’re asking for impossible things, can I tack torture on there too?)

I get it, people are going to tell me that “This is a fantasy story about war! We murder people by the droves! Why aren’t you bothered by that?” As far as I know, I have not slaughtered people by the thousands. I am not cruel to wild animals. I have, with only one exception, never seen anyone being violently killed or die. But I have, on a regular basis, been fondled, flashed, groped, as well as lived through both rape and sexual assault. On top of that, I’ve been in many more situations where I just did things I didn’t want to just not deal with the person demanding them. This is a persistent thing for some people, in our world. A lot of us never feel safe, and coming to the gaming community, where “rape” is a term tossed around in PVP, to even our fantasy games dragging in sexual assault, violence and torture, you can’t even leave it behind for an hour or two in the evenings.

Granted, Warcraft has done a good job not having it immediately up in front of our face but as anyone who’s read my blog on a regular basis knows, it’s still there. I’m asking that maybe now, before we travel to a new Draenor, that maybe it’s an alternate universe where this kind of awful, emotionally destructive shit doesn’t happen. It’s tiring. It makes coming back to Warcraft unnerving and upsetting and feeling like my desires don’t matter. It perpetually taints a place that has been, over the years, fairly supportive of both my real life and my fantasy experiences. I’ve met great guildmates, had fun in raids and seen amazing places. But every time people start speculating or I read yet another tie-in novel that mentions forced pregnancy, I feel gross all over again.

It’s not fun, it’s not fair to a lot of us, and it shouldn’t be some injected part of a fantasy story, point blank. There’s ways and means of putting it into a story that don’t make it cheap or only for spice, that don’t add it to a list of a character’s attributes like you would with “enjoys long walks” or “fought in the Third War.” But most of all, if you can’t do it right, maybe not do it at all? So many other places have enough of it that Warcraft skipping it from now on would not bother me a single solitary bit.

 

 

 

 

 

41 Responses

  1. I hate to say this. I’ve been thinking about this sort of thing for quite a while. Not just rape, mind you, but the sort of person Blizzard thinks it is appealing to by including instances of rape within the game. Or, for that matter, inviting people to technical alphas of Heroes of the Storm whose twitch broadcasts are loaded in misogyny. Or, for that matter, the boys trip comment, the lack of female representation in marketing materials, and so on. I’m not trying to draw equivalence to these things, but they all paint a picture of the sort of player Blizzard wants and the sort of player Blizzard doesn’t want.

    I said a couple weeks ago that the game isn’t fun for me anymore and WoD doesn’t look very good to me. I canceled my subscription as a result. Protesting to Blizzard about things that ruin the game for you and yet continuing to play the game makes those protests seem rather empty.

    I appreciate the desire to change Blizzard’s focus. I ask you to consider whether it has worked at all. Yes, they changed Ji Firepaw, but that change didn’t carry over to WoD, did it? Are they really sorry for the Cannibal Corpse video, or was that apology planned from the outset with a wink to the gamer dudes they really want to attract?

    I canceled my subscription. This is one of the reasons why. Maybe Blizzard doesn’t give a crap about one canceled subscription, but at least I no longer have to put up with a game that irritates me in the ways you set forth.

    • …Okay, maybe given the subject matter of this post you should think twice before saying things like “WELL IF YOU REALLY WANTED X YOU SHOULD Y OR ELSE YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO COMPLAAAAAIN.”

      You are perilously close to the ‘you went in knowing so you asked for it’ rhetoric. Maybe REPHRASING WOULD BE WISE.

  2. This is tough.

    On the one hand, I certainly do agree with you about rape being used as a way to toughen up a female character or show that she’s been through some things. I felt this way when I watched the premiere of “American Horror Story: Coven” and most recently, the premiere of “The Americans.” It didn’t feel necessary and especially on the first episode, it felt very trite.

    On the other hand, we are all too familiar with the fact that rape does happen. It shouldn’t, but it does. Is there a way to portray a woman who has been through that well, so it’s not used as a character building exercise or for shock value? I think there could be opportunities there for really great storytelling that wouldn’t be there if people pretend like rape doesn’t exist. That might be something people would like to see in their fantasy worlds. I don’t know.

    Thanks for listening!

    • The problem is that rape has become a trope in fiction.
      It has become shorthand for ‘worst thing we can do to a character and keep them alive’ – it’s lazy storytelling at best and exploitative of actual victims at worst. Yes, there are ways to use rape in a story that are not lazy or exploitative, but World of Warcraft is not the game to use to explore those kinds of stories. It’s better to simply not use rape as a storytelling device than to continue to use it badly.

      • I disagree. I think given World of Warcraft’s massive audience that it could be just the place to address a topic like that and address it well.

        Then again, I play Magic the Gathering and such a topic has never been used to my knowledge in a female character’s backstory – and they still remain strong and powerful people.

        • I feel like unless Blizzard really stepped their game up a notch and devoted more backstory/characterization, it could be done? But it’s pretty obvious up until now it’s been torture fodder and just violent.

          There’s been portrayals of rape that aren’t cheap or there for instant!grittiness or punishing women characters but so far, not in the Warcraft Universe.

    • “Pretend it doesn’t exist” oh, pooh, c’mon now. I don’t think anyone is trying to pretend it doesn’t exist. That’s something of an annoying strawmannish statement and you know it. Quit that.

      That’s an especially gross and egregious statement to be making in light of how sexual assault and rape are these constantly-moving-goalposts issues in the minds of mainstream culture. For frick’s sakes, ‘Blurred Lines’ alone…! If anyone’s pretending rape is not even a Thing, it’s the mainstream.

      There’s a difference between ignoring an issue/handwaving it/etc. and NOT BRINGING IT UP GRATUITOUSLY FOR SHOCK VALUE ALONE. How many times have you honestly seen justice and recovery handled in a situation like this? How many times have you really, really seen a victim/survivor treated with respect, treated as a PERSON? It certainly isn’t a Thing with Alexstrasza…she’s only allowed to even think about her trauma when a writer wants to punish her or cause her pain. Nor is it a Thing with Sylvanas, who was violated on a spiritual level at length, and now has fallen into the gross becoming-her-abuser trope.

      Sintharia’s attacked by Deathwing and that’s not even treated as horrible. Knaak acts like it’s her comeuppance.

      tl;dr Dandy has an annoyance bug down her shirt, et cetera. I’m not anry at you personally, hand to god, but I’ve seen that “OH ARE YOU SAYING IGNORE IT, BECAUSE THAT’S BAD TOO, DUDE!” type of an argument bandied about way too much and it’s exasperating. No one is talking about pretending assault never happens, so we can leave that on the porch. What we’re saying is “handle this issue like a damn grown-up or don’t touch the issue at all.”

      Assault is not goddamned window dressing or an edgy sting for a mature n’ grimdark story. Yeah, it happens. That doesn’t mean we should normalize it or use it as some throw-away thing.

      Either handle the issue like a grown-up, treat the survivor with respect, and generally BE DECENT…or don’t touch the issue. Being a hack about stuff like this does way more harm than good, and normalization is not synonymous with raising awareness.

  3. “It’s not fun, it’s not fair to a lot of us,”

    no its not fair in your mind to YOU. just because you have issue with it doesnt mean we all do.

    thats your problem imposing your standards on millions of others. if you dont like it go play final fantasy online

    • Why is including rape in the game so important?
      Is it such an integral, necessary part of the story that Blizzard is trying to tell that it’s better for survivors to play a different game than for Blizzard to exclude that particular trope? Is rape so vital to Blizzard’s storytelling that they must include it?

      • rape isn’t a trope. It’s a very ugly, very real part of our reality. Whitewashing incidences of rape out of fictional stories because they make us uncomfortable or trigger is a disservice. NOBODY wants rape stories just for the lols (unless they’re sick, demented people) but touching, sometimes painfully prodding, on the darker side of human nature can shed a light and awareness, and is one of many tools of telling a story of strength or defeat.

        Every facet of the human experience is useful in telling a story. It is not required to be an “integral necessary part” in order to help progress the narrative. Just touching on it helps to flesh out characters and plots.

    • The first dungeon in Final Fantasy XIV (which I assume is the game you are mistakenly calling ‘Final Fantasy Online), actually is a pirate lair with kidnapped women in it, who are being kept as bed slaves and tavern wenches against their will. So ‘going there’ wouldn’t actually be escaping this trope. =P

  4. @ Jakes: So you think it’s ok for male characters to force themselves on female characters, just because it is make-believe?

    Laughable that you think the OP is somehow on her own in this. Every single woman I know fears rape, even here in the so-called civilised west. Hardly a non-issue.

    As for your Final Fantasy comment; seriously?

  5. As horrible, as rape is (no one is saying it is not), it is part of the story. As is murder, torture, and genocide. Because you are hypersensitive to an element of the story line does not mean it should be excluded. Rape in the games have been glorified, they are carried out by the “bad guys” are often dispatched by the heroes in the Warcraft universe. It does seem that you are making a mountain out of a molehill (not to discredit or say your own experiences are not horrible).

    “It’s not fun, it’s not fair to a lot of us, and it shouldn’t be some injected part of a fantasy story…” It’s unfair to others who want a gritty storyline in their fantasy game because some people have been offended or in some cases it bothers. Warcraft has a huge population base, neither you nor I can speak for the entirety of it, let Blizzard write their story the way they should feel it should be written. I know it bothers some people immensely, but it is in the end it’s a game that doesn’t promote “rape culture.”

    • So you’re basically saying, not only to the author but to every potential rape victim playing the game that may have come across these plotlines: “Think about everyone else that enjoys it/isn’t bothered by it and shut up/stop complaining” – Classy, you terrible human being.

      The use of rape as a motivational trope is lazy, contributes nothing and provides no real substance or “realism” to a storyline beyond an adolescent preception on the subject.

      • The use of murder as a motivational trope is lazy, contributes nothing and provides no real substance or “realism”.

        Neither does blackmail, torture, genocide, adultery or anything else.

        Who are you to judge what story should be told? Should we just watch MLP and Barney so we are completely shielded from potentially troubling stories involving suffering, pain or death? The point is that these terrible actions cause us to be uncomfortable and motivate us to hate those performing those deeds.

    • @Red: Still not making valid points, even if you are using more than 140 characters.

      Here are some observations on your arguments:

      You start out by making the point that ACM is hypersensitive and seeing rape where there is none, but then you justify rape in the story because it’s “part of the story.” You’re countermanding your own original premise.

      Also, “it is part of the story” is not a valid argument as to why the story should no longer perpetuate rape culture. That’s like saying it’s okay to murder people because people murder people.

      If I was playing fallacy bingo I would have filled all 25 spaces by now. Please visit https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/ and learn how to formulate a coherent argument.

      Beyond all that:

      Rape isn’t a requirement for “gritty” storytelling, just as gratuitous nudity and violence isn’t a requirement for telling a “grown-up” story.

      Blizzard ‘owns’ the story, but that doesn’t preclude them from throwing away problematic elements. They remove mechanical elements that don’t work or don’t make sense anymore from the game all the time. ACM got them to turn Ji Firepaw from a complete sleazebag to a far more endearing character by speaking up about this kind of issue.

    • It’s a choice to put it in the story and I am questioning/criticizing that choice. It is not hypersensitive to have an opinion about something that is really for real there in the story. I don’t like treating rape as “instant bad guy” fodder because a) there’s less hurtful but still evil things one could do (see Sylvanas, f’instance) b) it also promotes idea that only really evil men rape people, which isn’t even remotely true.

      I am not making a mountain out of a molehill. This is my blog and it’s entirely my prerogative.

      Please explain to me, slowly, like I’m a toddler, why are you uncomfortable with me criticizing Blizzard for including rape in their games.

      BTW, flat portrayals of rape that torture women characters for spice maybe not promote rape culture but um they certainly don’t shy away from it.

      • Sylvanas commits genocide against all the humans of Lordaeron, and traps their living souls in the rotting prison of their corpses. Their living prisoners are experimented on, going through what would most likely be assumed as horrific tortures and suffering as they’re subjected to chemical and physical tests, watching their friends and loved ones die horribly, finally dying themselves, only to be ripped back to a torturous undeath existence.

        You seriously calling that “less hurtful” than rape?

        No, if you are fine with the themes brought into WoW via Sylvanas and her Forsaken monsters, I cant at all take your complaint against elements of rape in the game seriously, at all. They are both comparatively dark, disgusting and horrifying, and to put your suffering as a rape victim above those who’ve suffered physical or emotional torture is just wrong, and reeks of ignorant hypocrisy.

        Is there an argument made for toning down the violence in WoW? Maybe. But your selective editing is definitely not the way to go about it.

    • Red, to use your examples, the likelihood that an average player of WoW has experienced murder, torture or genocide firsthand is vanishingly low.

      The likelihood that they know someone personally who was murdered, tortured, or a victim of genocide is also quite low.

      The likelihood that an average player has experienced rape firsthand? That’s a really damn good bet. There are plenty of women players on WoW, and the likelihood for a North American woman to have been raped is 1 in 4. In other countries it’s even higher. And many victims have been blamed because “they were just asking for it”, so they have never gotten closure. In many ways it’s still an open wound.

      When that many players have been a victim of a traumatizing crime and it’s a good bet that many of those victims are also playing your game, it’s not just a trivial little courtesy to avoid any references to that crime. In a very real business sense, it’s the smart play — because no sane gaming business wants to alienate a large percentage of their playerbase.

      The fact that this gets routinely dismissed as trivial is not only outrageous — it’s just plain stupid.

      • “The likelihood that an average player has experienced rape firsthand? That’s a really damn good bet.”

        I really didn’t want to get involved in this by posting here but after reading this comment… HOLY shit. What are you on? WoW has millions of players. You think it’s a “damn good bet” that the “average player” (by definition circa the 50th percentile) has been raped?

        This is exactly the hypersensitivity I posted about on Twitter (though, again, to be clear, I’m not Red).

        Sorry, that’s fucking insane. Take two steps back from your post and reconsider what you’ve said.

        • I really didn’t want to get involved in this by posting here but after reading this comment… HOLY shit. What are you on? WoW has millions of players. You think it’s a “damn good bet” that the “average player” (by definition circa the 50th percentile) has been raped?

          1 in 6 women in America have experienced rape in their lifetime. And that’s just a number for reported rapes. That is a significant number, and I know for a fact that I’ve played with women who have been victims of sexual assault and/or rape (I include myself in that). Most people I know who play also know at least one person who has experienced this first hand. Many won’t talk about it because they’re dismissed and ignored and told they can’t talk about it rationally and logically without getting emotional and sensitive because apparently an argument is only valid so long as you can be a robot regarding something you’ve personally experienced.

          No one is saying that Blizzard can’t write about rape, just that, with their proven history of time and time again using it purely for shock value and treating the subject matter dismissively, it’s time for them to maybe step back and lay off for a long time. No amount of respect is ever afforded to those of us who have to live with it day in and day out, and it’s not illogical or “hypersensitive” of us to say we don’t want to see it anymore, or at least see a more nuanced and accurate portrayal of the very real traumatic experience it is. (By the way, “hypersensitivity” is a loaded word with many sexist connotations almost always aimed at women to try and dismiss their arguments.)

          Why is it so important to you to see Blizzard continue writing (poorly) about rape? Why are you clinging to the one thing criticized here? Taking rape out of the game changes absolutely nothing about the story in this case. Nothing.

      • Also the comments about alienating a large percentage is actually funny, it’s so unbelievable. Yes, just think of the MILLIONS MORE subscribers WoW would have if only Blizzard wasn’t so gung-ho about including rape! Man, they love rape over there in Irvine don’t they?

        This blog is an insanity pit. I can’t believe this shit I’m reading.

        • Due to how insane you find this blog, I have removed your ability to comment to it from now on. It’s for your own good, I think! :)

    • Alright, if we’re going to indulge your “but rape happens!” argument…

      If we really wanted to be REALLY REAL here, then after the rape, ample time should be taken to explore the immediate physical and emotional fall out of a rape victim. The shattered trust, the fear, the way the victim looks at the world and other people being irrevocably changed. The chance that, if the victim possesses a uterus and the assailant a penis, they may be pregnant by their attacker. The reaction of their loved ones, friends, acquaintances. The reaction of law enforcement and the shaming and the protection that rapists get. The fight for justice, the recovery. The fact that, even years away from the fact, you still look over your shoulder more than you used to.

      Because that’s the reality. And, hey, you’re so set on GRITTY REALISM, after all. You should be all for the spotlight centering on a victim after their trauma.

    • Red, it might be true that it’s “unfair” to the people that condone murder/torture/genocide/insults/rape in the games they play. But at the end of the day, who gives a shit about that? It’s the author’s story. They can put what they want in it. It is not up to us to decide what Chris Metzen of Dave Kosak can or should put in a story. So I don’t care who it’s “unfair” to. It’s their art. If a person doesn’t like it, they don’t have to buy it. They can post complaints all they want that it’s bad writing, or it doesn’t belong in a fantasy game (lol) or on any other grounds they wish to criticize. At the end of the day, when you shriek into the void about how terrible Blizzard is for including these story elements, but you STILL manage to plunk down 40-60 dollars on everything they release, THEY DON’T GIVE A SHIT.

      “Hey guys, Blizzard makes some fucked up stories that deeply offend me as a rape survivor. Here, let me tell you about it after equip my RoS Collector’s Edition wings that I got because I just gave them 60 more dollars.” Does anyone else see a problem here?

  6. I tried to be really polite and express my own opinion without attacking ACM, and yet Brenden Sparks and SGS were fairly rude.

    I guess we can agree to disagree when it comes to what story elements are acceptable in a story.

    • Sorry Red. I made an assumption that you were the same person as Dreadnaught based on your initial argument and word choice.

      In retrospect you’ve been polite. Dreadnaught’s been far less so.

    • “As horrible, as rape is (no one is saying it is not), it is part of the story.”

      WHY is it part of the story? Why is it that it HAS to be part of the story? It doesn’t whatsoever. This is a fantasy world; there is no need at all to include sexual violence as a story driver.

    • I’d prefer in the future that when giving criticism of my opinions or discussing why you disagree that you don’t call people hypersensitive or denigrate why we find things upsetting.

      • My apologies if my words caused any ill feelings, they were in hindsight poorly chosen, and were not intended to dismiss you or your opinions. It is hard to discuss such a sensitive topic without trying to sound like an arse, but would seem I unintentionally ended up being one.

        “I’d prefer in the future that when giving criticism of my opinions or discussing why you disagree that you don’t call people hypersensitive or denigrate why we find things upsetting.”

        I think I can manage that, or at least try my best not to insert foot into mouth.

        “WHY is it part of the story? Why is it that it HAS to be part of the story? It doesn’t whatsoever. This is a fantasy world; there is no need at all to include sexual violence as a story driver.”

        Originally the Alexstrasza storyline didn’t include the fact they were intelligent beings, and the Orcs force bred them like we breed cattle and live stock today.

        I am curious as to how you explain about the Draenei Hybrids like Garona and others who were the results of a forced breeding program Gul’dan instituted, who after birth were magically aged to maturity. Perhaps if you could find a better alternative Blizzard maybe willing to retcon or clarify (so it would not include the bits you dislike).

          • The point I’m making is that previous stuff has been pretty crass, and ok what’s done is done and that is kind of hard to change, BUT Warlords is not yet out. Now is Blizzard’s chance to ditch sexual violence as a recurring theme, and no matter that the Warlords are these over the top cavemen-Orc types rampaging round Draenor, they DON’T need to include rape in the storyline, AT ALL.

            I really hope you can appreciate that viewpoint.

        • Why are you putting the onus on ACM to explain Garona? That’s annoying.

          And besides, the example of GArona and what we’re discusing? VERY DIFFERENT CASES IN HOW THEY ARE HANDLED. Garona is an extremely old example of horrible war shit behind the scenes, and initially her story was not exploited for GOSH WOW SHOCK HORROR HEAVY BREATHING OMG. (it is NOW because CDev has pigs in it.) Part of the reaosn for this is because it wasn’t common for video games to incorporate that sort of a thing at that time (Phantasmagoria came out in 1995 and it’s the first game i can really recall that was…well…what it was like). Part of this is because harping on her origin wasn’t something Blizzard was doing. She was a minor character at first–a manual narrator and minor NPC. She was, at first, said to be orc/human, and the implications of that fact were left at that. It was not this OH OH OH LOOK HOW GRITTY AND GRIM routine.

          Blizzard’s attitude toward how they handle horrific subject matter has changed A LOT. They used to be more inclined to present it flat-out in textbooky point-form and not try to hang a neon sign on how mature ‘n dark it all was. This isn’t super-okay in all respects, but it strikes me as less obnoxious than the current method of OH THE GRIMMMMMMM.

          Garona having been the product of Gul’dan’s forcing an unwilling draenei and equally unwilling orc to “breed” (the original canon implies heavily that both parties were unwilling because there was less OMGSAVAGES crap flying around CDev during BC, IMHO) has been a thing for a long time, yes, but it used to be not trotted out for shock value or wanked over again and again.

          Compare and contrast the current treatment of female dragons. Blizzard does a lot of horrid things to them, and I suspect fandom can be very stupid about letting that slide because ~urrrrgffff they’re animalz?~ Yeah whatever, they weren’t sapient at first, but NOW THEY ARE, so we can toss out the notion that it doesn’t matter what happens to them. For crying out loud–why do these fans think animal breeding “mills” are illegal?

          Blizzard is grosser than ever before about rape and assault now. Knaak acts like Sintharia deserved to be assaulted by an on-fire Deathwing, and thus mutilated and driven insane. It does matter that Keristrasza was assaulted by Malygos SOMEHOW. It does matter that the PC treats Nyxondra horriffically, and that someone saw fit to think that the red flight would use and abuse her the exact way that Alex herself was abused. It does matter that Alex’s abuse is masturbated over forever and ever, and she is hurt AGAIN AND AGAIN, and that’s only done for shock value. She is not allowed to be a person, she is not allowed to heal, she is there to be hurt because it’s shocking.

          If the subject was handled with respect, tact and gravity LIKE IT SHOULD BE, it would not be a problem. Instead, though, what we have is a bunch of ignorant dweebs going OMG RAEP RAEP RAEP EDGY RAEP every bloody which way and simultaneously upholding it as the arch-horror…and treating it like it’s meaningless by not even dealing with the effect on the survivor.

          Blizzard is immature about handling these issues.

  7. Once again, you’re spot-on.

    People that go “well if you’re so against having sexual assault in the game why aren’t you against murder” seem to forget that in real life, people are well aware of what murder entails and of it being illegal. People don’t tend to ask “what did they do to provoke their killer?”

    Sexual assault doesn’t have that status IRL. There are enough people that don’t seem to ‘get’ that no means no, that dubious consent is still rape, that someone being drunk isn’t an invitation to sex, and people tend to find reasons for the victim to have ‘earned’ what happened to them. If someone doesn’t follow rule x, y, and z, and they suffer an assault, it’s their fault, they should have known better.

    If you’re sitting here saying “I don’t see the big deal” then you’re most likely one of those people.

    As an aside, it’s perfectly reasonable to expect a fantasy world where we don’t have rape shoved in our faces all the time.

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