Sunday, 17 February 2013

Busty Barbarian Bimbos does not empower women, it's just thinly veiled misogyny

Tenkar has just posted about a new RPG Kickstarter that has me severely facepalming. The game in question has already achieved over half of its funding goal with 28 days to go. It's also called Busty Barbarian Bimbos. Groan.

The synopsis is that players take on the roles of pin-ups from the covers of RPG books - you know, scantily clad and well endowed. However, instead of being the regular damsels in distress, these 'bimbos' are the adventurers, living in a society where "the values of aesthetic beauty, fashion, and social standing." Here are a few things that we can expect from BBB.




"Pretty girls get preferential treatment. They are treated better by other characters. They are treated better by their clothes. They are treated better by the rules."

"Dismissal of manliness. Men don't matter. The heroines aren't encouraged to solve problems by emulating manly characters from other games."



"We aren't taking Conan the Cimmerian and photoshopping a bikini onto him. Not to knock Red Sonja, but the model of empowering girls by having them act like boys is not the goal here."

Get that? They're "empowering girls" by emphasising that looks allow you to acquire a better social standing, and saying that women can't have physically strong 'manly' traits. I guess that referring to them as 'busty bimbos' is also empowering. I can totally see how women are represented equally to men in this game.

As for the stats - BBB uses a four stat system: Slap, Legs, Uhm and Tits - obviously spelling out SLUT. Seriously, I wish I were joking. This is approaching F.A.T.A.L levels of maturity, all in the guise of a 'light-hearted roleplaying game'. The designers clearly have a vast respect for females. Oh, and there's shopping! Hooray!

The creators seem to be kidding themselves into thinking that this isn't at all misogynistic, when in fact this is everything that's wrong with this male-dominated hobby in the first place. Sure, there will be women who might play this for a laugh, but I'm certain that most will look at this sexist piece of drivel and want to burn it.

I feel bad for giving BBB any publicity whatsoever, but it's important that sexism in the gaming industry is highlighted. We need less of this and more actual female empowerment - clearly we've still got a long way to go.