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17. Feb 2022

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  1. Contextual Research
  2. ConcernedApe (Eric Barone) ConceredApe is a self-made game developer who created Stardew Valley a farming and life simulator, this information is taken from his website and explains who he is and what he did to make the game. (ConcernedApe's Haunted Chocolatier) “Stardew Valley was created by game designer Eric Barone, under the alias of ConcernedApe. During the four years he spent solo- developing it, he taught himself the necessary skills to produce the game’s music, art, programming, and design. The game was released on PC on February 26, 2016, and within two months passed 1 million copies sold. Within a few months the game expanded support to Mac and Linux, it released on Xbox One and Playstation 4 in December 2016, Nintendo Switch in late 2017, and iOS in October 2018. There have been five major post release updates – the first which added new farm maps, marriage options, and content, the second expanded supported languages to include German, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Russian, Japanese and Simplified Chinese. The third update (in late 2018) added Multiplayer functionality, with network code done by (then) Chucklefish programmer Tom Coxon. Starting with the 4th update, Eric formed a small team to help him update the game. The fourth and fifth updates added significant amounts of new content to the game. Since release, the game has sold over 15 million copies worldwide.” He has since started a new project called Haunted Chocolatier which is currently in progress, he posts updates and the progression on a blog. Although he doesn’t say a lot about what he's doing specifically it's really interesting to see what's to come. On the blog he also includes art of the characters and a video showing the combat.
  3. ConcernedApe (Eric Barone) He only has one full game at present but what he has done so far has changed the games industry and made a great addition to the simulation genre. When it comes to his beliefs it's obvious, he has things he sticks to, like the art style, if you look at the art below from Haunted Chocolatier and compare it to art from Stardew valley, they could be from the same game, they have the same art style, both are pixel art, and the environments look the same. Although they are similar that is what makes a ConcernedApe game, there are no other games that do what his do. He fills a gap in the industry. This next article talks about his struggles with making the game, how it affected his relationships and his mental health. How Eric Barone Built A $30 Million Business By Himself From His Apartment | by Amardeep Parmar | Entrepreneur's Handbook ( One of the key parts from it is: “The main character in Stardew Valley quits his job at an inflexible corporation because his grandpa leaves him a plot of land in the middle of nowhere. The character chooses to restart his life out in nature surrounded by beauty. The gameplay is based around farming and interacting with characters who have a human-like depth to them. This was the complete opposite to Eric’s life. He worked 80-hour weeks and barely left the house. He was his own inflexible boss but there was no plot of land to escape to.” Another key part of the article is when it talks about. “In August 2017, he took an overdue break and went on a road trip across America with his girlfriend and housemates. Eric experienced the outside world again with the freedom of one of his virtual characters. They stopped off in California where he allowed himself to relax on the beach like when he was a kid. He later hired someone to help him manage Stardew Valley. He’s now working on a new project called Haunted Chocolatier by himself again. Yet the unhealthy obsession no longer seems to be there. He’s learned from Stardew Valley and while he wants his new game to be even better, he’s not destroying himself to do it.” Also, in the article he talks about the struggle to make certain aspects of the game like the pixel art; Whenever he came across a task he didn’t know how to do, he asked himself, “why not me?” If there were other people out there who could do it, why couldn’t he learn how to do it? Pixel art was something he remembers being difficult, but he sunk hundreds of hours into getting better. His self-belief meant Stardew Valley was high quality in every measure.” This also highlights his struggle with the workload. Using wages as a part-time theatre usher as funding, he created the massively popular Stardew Valley video game. All by himself. For context, the development of Super Mario Odyssey needed 68 different specialized roles. Eric was the producer, storyteller, developer, audio director, and artist all rolled into one.
  4. ConcernedApe (Eric Barone) There was a book written about him by Douglas R. Ewing in 2022 called Solo Entrepreneurship in the Video Game Industry - What is the Best Growth Strategy for Stardew Valley After Early Success? The blurb says; The farming video game Stardew Valley was launched to critical and commercial success in 2016. Lone developer Eric Barone wants to stay competitive in the popular and ever-changing gaming industry, but to do so he must ensure his product stays fresh and he connects with users. How should he proceed? So far Barone has considered several options. One is to seek development assistance. He could hire other creators to add on to or improve Stardew Valley. Doing this would help to ensure the original game does not go stale while freeing him to pursue other video game projects or expand into related categories. However, hiring is expensive. To simply stay in the game--whether his business sees actual growth--Barone must constantly refresh his product, his methods of extracting revenue, his practices of interacting with the various players in the video game ecosystem, or a combination of these. This case challenges students to assess a situation where past success had been unlikely and to make forward-looking recommendations that account for a crowded competitive space beholden to user generated content and concentrated methods of product distribution. There was also another book that included his story, but I was not able to read the part he's mentioned. It's called Blood Sweat and Pixels by Jason Schreier and was published 2017. The blurb reads; “ “The stories in this book make for a fascinating and remarkably complete pantheon of just about every common despair and every joy related to game development.” — Rami Ismail, cofounder of Vlambeer and developer of Nuclear Throne. Developing video games—hero's journey or fool's errand? The creative and technical logistics that go into building today's hottest games can be more harrowing and complex than the games themselves, often seeming like an endless maze or a bottomless abyss. In Blood, Sweat, and Pixels, Jason Schreier takes readers on a fascinating odyssey behind the scenes of video game development, where the creator may be a team of 600 overworked underdogs or a solitary geek genius. Exploring the artistic challenges, technical impossibilities, marketplace demands, and Donkey Kong- sized monkey wrenches thrown into the works by corporate, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels reveals how bringing any game to completion is more than Sisyphean—it's nothing short of miraculous. Taking some of the most popular, bestselling recent games, Schreier immerses readers in the hellfire of the development process, whether it's RPG studio Bioware's challenge to beat an impossible schedule and overcome countless technical nightmares to build Dragon Age: Inquisition; indie developer Eric Barone's single-handed efforts to grow country-life RPG Stardew Valley from one man's vision into a multi- million-dollar franchise; or Bungie spinning out from their corporate overlords at Microsoft to create Destiny, a brand new universe that they hoped would become as iconic as Star Wars and Lord of the Rings—even as it nearly ripped their studio apart. Documenting the round-the-clock crunches, buggy-eyed burnout, and last-minute saves, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels is a journey through development hell—and ultimately a tribute to the dedicated diehards and unsung heroes who scale mountains of obstacles in their quests to create the best games imaginable.”
  5. Jeff Kaplan Jeff Kaplan was the game director of overwatch and more recently overwatch 2 until he left in April of 2021. This is what the overwatch wiki says about him. Prior to joining Blizzard Entertainment, Kaplan played and modded a number of FPS games, including Quake, Doom, Half-Life, and Duke Nukem 3D. He also got into EverQuest during this time period. He did not play Blizzard games during this period, as the company was more focused on RTS games during this time. Kaplan joined Blizzard Entertainment in May 2002. He worked as a tester for Warcraft III as the game neared release. After the game released, he was transferred to work on World of Warcraft. Kaplan has commented that the shift from RTS to MMO was a "natural fit" for his gaming preferences. He worked on quests for the game, and later served as the game director. Kaplan worked for five years on Titan before the game's cancellation. In the aftermath, he did work on Crossroads, pitching the 50 classes idea. On the side, he did a "heroes rather than classes" pitch, which became the basis of Overwatch. He was a "stakeholder" in the game's animated shorts and gives feedback on their production. Kaplan's departure from Blizzard was announced in April 2021. Aaron Keller took his position of game director. ( Jeff Kaplan - Overwatch Wiki (
  6. Jeff Kaplan On his LinkedIn profile it includes his jobs over the previous years and his experience at Blizzard. See left image. Jeffrey Kaplan - Irvine, California, United States | Professional Profile | LinkedIn In this article from GameRant it talks about how Jeff was a shield to the developers at Blizzard from "corporate bs" Ex-Overwatch Director Jeff Kaplan Shielded His Team from 'Corporate BS' ( of the main points in the article is: "According to one of the Overwatch producers on Twitter spotted by Dexerto, Kaplan was able to protect his team from "corporate BS" while he was with the company. Producer Tracy Kennedy recently stated that Activision Blizzard's corporate culture was at odds with the Overwatch team prior to Jeff Kaplan's departure, which was an attempt to rectify the issue. During his goodbye speech, Jeff Kaplan referenced Activision Blizzard's cultural issues, according to Kennedy, and the ripple effects of his leaving are still being felt." Another major point in the article was: "Kaplan left Activision Blizzard back in April, leaving the Overwatch team unshielded from the corporate issues that Kennedy suggested he protected the team from. Kaplan isn't the only key Activision Blizzard figure to have recently departed, as Blizzard President J. Allen Brack also left the company as a result of the ongoing lawsuit. Although it's currently unclear if the corporate restructuring is helping the issues at Activision Blizzard, the recently appointed co- leader of Blizzard Entertainment Jen Oneal has also confirmed that she's stepping down. On top of all the recent departures doubtlessly impacting the teams at Activision Blizzard, CEO Bobby Kotick has also been implicated in the ongoing lawsuit. According to more information coming out about the lawsuit, Kotick allegedly said demoralizing things to several employees. Activision Blizzard has since made a statement rebutting the allegations, but several fans are still worried that the allegations are true. Because Jeff Kaplan unveiled nearly every Overwatch update over the years, the title felt very close to him, and Kennedy's statements seemingly confirm it. Overwatch 2 was recently delayed and part of that may be due to the loss of Kaplan and his leadership. It remains to be seen what other leadership may depart Activision Blizzard as its lawsuit with California further unfolds." This shows Kaplan's perseverance and how the games he's worked on will be affected.
  7. Jeff Kaplan In another article he talks about balancing in overwatch, the whole article has good points and shows what he does as developer. Earlier this month, Jeff Kaplan, Overwatch’s game director, took to the Blizzard forums to share his perspective on the balance state of Overwatch. Before going any further, it should be noted that Kaplan spent quite some time stressing that these are his thoughts, and that he is but one man in a team of many. Kaplan starts the post off by stating that he believes the current iteration of Overwatch to be balanced, or at least in a good place. There are some outliers that he mentions: they maybe broke Roadhog a bit too much and Mercy’s ultimate isn’t fun for anyone. However, other than that, he is essentially happy with the current situation. Moving on, Kaplan gets into the real nitty gritty of the current complaints. He states that perceived balance is actually more important than balance itself. This is a sentiment that he echoes again later, but it basically boils down to: if the community thinks/doesn’t think its broken, then it is/is not broken. He specifically used Torbjorn and Symmetra as the examples here. Because Kaplan doesn’t see any outcries for them to be nerfed, they aren’t. Another issue on his list is that the meta is too slow to shift. This is where things get a little complicated in the post. Kaplan breaks this idea down into three separate ways that the meta can change in games: something changes with the balance, players innovate new strategies and the game forces meta change through mechanics. In the next few paragraphs, Kaplan addresses all three of these claims and how they function in Overwatch. Kaplan starts things off by saying that he does not believe that balancing something for the sake of shaking up the meta is a good idea. Instead, he would rather the meta change in one of the other ways. The way that Kaplan tells it is that they will not be changing the balance of Overwatch to help make things different, allowing those things to come naturally instead. The main goal, Kaplan’s ideal scenario, is to have the players come up with new strategies that change the game. He cites a time when the community begged the Overwatch team to buff D.Va, fearing that she was dead forever. Instead, the developers did nothing. Despite the no changes, D.Va is now one of the most played, most powerful characters in the meta. Finally, Kaplan stated that the game could be changed through the systems, the one he sites here being bans. According to this post, bans will not be coming to Overwatch anytime soon. Kaplan has respect and understanding for why games like League of Legends use bans, but states that it is simply not for Overwatch. To finish off his post, Kaplan dives into the current meta. He suggests that, while players feedback regarding not enjoying dive is helpful, it seems that very few people are actually playing that meta. Most players play Quick Play, focusing on: Genji, 76, Hanzo, McCree, Mercy and Junkrat. Competitive players focus on: Mercy, 76, D.Va, Lucio, Ana and Genji. Reinhardt finishes off the group as number seven. Even the top third of players picked Ana more than anyone else. What do these stats mean? Kaplan is saying that a majority of the players in the game don’t actual experience the thing that everyone is so mad about. Winston isn’t even on this list, and D.Va is only the third most picked in competitive. The post ends with somewhat of a word of warning: to not yell so much about the perceived meta. Things change, but the team would rather wait for things to change naturally rather than force it. Similarly, the hive mind can loud and unreasonable. The stats point away from the dive meta, not toward it. Dive heroes are powerful, yes, but that will naturally change in time. Kaplan’s big focus of this post is to say that the team is content with the current trajectory, and that Overwatch’s meta shifts are beholden to the players, not the dev team. If you, like me, are one of the players that wishes Overwatch would change more, it seems that Kaplan has challenged us to find creative new ways to change things ourselves. Jeff Kaplan wants the Overwatch meta to evolve from players, not balance changes - Heroes Never Die Another more wholesome thing about him is his want to treat the OWL like the hockey league, he wanted everyone one the winning team to have their names engraved on the trophy. This article from Dextero talks about it in more detail. Kaplan is known to be a massive hockey fan and told Dexerto at the Overwatch League Grand Finals media day that he and his brother attended game 6 of the 2012 Stanley Cup finals where the LA Kings defeated the New Jersey Devils to win their first championship. "Every championship-winning team and the players on the roster get their names engraved on the cup – something Kaplan wants to see implemented in the Overwatch League. Kaplan mentioned specifically that he loves this ritual in the NHL and would like to see it introduced in the OWL too. “I think having players’ names engraved on the trophy in future seasons would be very cool,” Kaplan said." Overwatch's Jeff Kaplan reveals NHL tradition he wants in OWL - Dexerto
  8. Jeff Kaplan A really important issue that happened with Blizzard was banning a player after they said they said were standing by the Hong Kong protesters 2019. This article from mxdmn outlines how Jeff wanted the situation to be handled. "In a recent interview with The Washington Post, Blizzard Vice President and Director of Overwatch Jeff Kaplan shared a difference of opinion with Blizzard’s official decisions and statements on the banning and later suspension of professional Hearthstone player Chung “blitzchung” Ng Wai. The initial decision to ban Ng Wai came in response to statements Ng Wai made during an official Hearthstone Grandmaster stream in support of the civilian protestors in Hong Kong. “I was relieved when they reduced his suspension,” Kaplan told The Washington Post. “And I think the suspension should be reduced more or eliminated. But that’s just me. ”Kaplan added: “I’m obviously a huge supporter of free speech; it’s something that’s very important to me. It got to me personally. I think the punishment was too harsh and I was greatly relieved when they gave his money back. I think that was extremely important.” In the interview, Kaplan is clear that he is offering an individual opinion; Blizzard employees at all levels ostensibly have the right to hold and share their own opinions. Kaplan did share that Blizzard’s esports endeavour, the Overwatch League, has different processes when determining when and how to disciple professional players, emphasizing that there is more time taken to weigh the decision. “We had to deal with a few of them in season one in particular, and that process usually takes about four or five days to make the decision,” Kaplan explained. “There was always a group of us involved in deciding what the punishment should be, and we would heavily devil’s-advocate every part of the decision. So, I was actually shocked that such a harsh penalty was relieved." Kaplan joins fellow Blizzard employee Ben Lee, Hearthstone’s game director, in his opinion that the punishments given to Ng Wai were “too harsh” when asked for a comment by Kotaku at BlizzCon 2019. Ben Thompson ultimately sided with Blizzard’s decision, arguing that while free speech should be encouraged on private platforms, “Doing so from a platform very much not your own and done from a voice not your own to take control, so to speak, or on behalf of another is not free speech. That is on behalf of something that’s not yours to do with.”BlizzCon 2019’s Opening Ceremony started with an emotional and carefully worded statement from President J. Allen Brack, addressing both the initial decision to ban Ng Wai and the delay in releasing an official statement on what led to the choice. Brack also “accepted accountability” for the choices but did not rescind the penalties on Ng Wai. The initial decision to ban Ng Wai for 12 months and revoke his Hearthstone Grandmasters prize money was met with enormous backlash that included a bipartisan letter from the United States Congress and protests in support of the democratic ideal of free speech outside the Anaheim Convention Center during BlizzCon on November 1st and 2nd. Blizzard has since reinstated Ng Wai’s prize money and altered the punishment to a suspension of six months. Overwatch Director Jeff Kaplan Believes Blitzchung's Ban "Should Be Reduced More or Eliminated" - mxdwn Games Jeff is mentioned in this book called What Is a Game? By Gaines S. Hubbell and Matthew Wilhelm Kapell, in the section about overwatch. The blurb reads: What is a videogame? What makes a videogame "good"? If a game is supposed to be fun, can it be fun without a good story? If another is supposed to be an accurate simulation, does it still need to be entertaining? With the ever-expanding explosion of new videogames and new developments in the gaming world, questions about videogame criticism are becoming more complex. The differing definitions that players and critics use to decide what a game is and what makes a game successful, often lead to different ideas of how games succeed or fail. This collection of new essays puts on display the variety and ambiguity of videogames. Each essay is a work of game criticism that takes a different approach to defining the game and analysing it. Through analysis and critical methods, these essays discuss whether a game is defined by its rules, its narrative, its technology, or by the activity of playing it, and the tensions between these definitions. With essays on Overwatch, Dark Souls 3, Far Cry 4, Farmville and more, this collection attempts to show the complex changes, challenges and advances to game criticism in the era of videogames.
  9. Notch (Markus Persson) Notch is the creator of Minecraft and one of the founders of Mojang studios. In 2015 he sold Mojang to Microsoft for $2.5 billion, in this article from sportskeeda, he explains why: "Marcus "Notch" Persson sold his game development company, Mojang, which held the rights for the massively popular title, Minecraft, to Microsoft, all the way back in 2014. This was part of a sweltering $2.5 billion dollar deal. Many fans were initially left upset regarding the massive transaction, in fear that Microsoft would "kill Minecraft," mainly fuelled by speculation of intrusive over-commercialization of the game. Contradictory to this once popular belief is the fact that in 2021, it's widely agreed within the community that Microsoft has done a generally sound job of adding fresh content to the game and listening to feedback. This is evident in the onslaught of game updates constantly being pushed, even ringing true to this day with the exciting new cave update just around the corner. Why did Notch sell Minecraft to Microsoft? Although Notch also did a great job in terms of game development and the overall trajectory of Minecraft, it's widely believed that he was very unhappy towards the end of his time leading the Minecraft project at Mojang. This was attributed mainly to the fact Notch always had a distaste for the limelight, even so much so that he took to voicing his frustrations publicly. Notch also went on to say things such as "the Mojang sale is not about the money, it's about my sanity" - a further indication of his unhappiness towards the end of his control over Mojang. Specifically, what lead Notch directly to become unhappy with his situation at Mojang is mainly understood to be a result of the spotlight that was forced upon him. This came as a by-product of Minecraft's explosive worldwide success. Notch has been personified by admirers as a genuine character who was simply more competent with game development and less so public relations. Shortly after the deal with Microsoft was announced, Notch posted this to his personal website: " I wasn’t exactly sure how I fit into Mojang where people did actual work, but since people said I was important for the culture, I stayed." "I’m not an entrepreneur. I’m not a CEO. I’m a nerdy computer programmer who likes to have opinions on Twitter." This insight gave fans a brief look into the thoughts of a man who appeared to be on the verge of a breakdown"
  10. Notch (Markus Persson) Although he created the game, he hasn’t been included in events hosted by Mojang due to his use twitter, his comments and opinions are generally controversial, this article from variety goes into more detail about the situation. ('Minecraft' Creator Excluded From Anniversary Due to 'Comments and Opinions' (EXCLUSIVE) - Variety )"“Minecraft” creator Marcus “Notch” Persson, who sold the title to Microsoft for $2.5 billion in 2014, won’t be part of 10-year anniversary plans for the game because of his “comments and opinions,” Microsoft tells Variety. “His comments and opinions do not reflect those of Microsoft or Mojang and are not representative of ‘Minecraft,” a Microsoft spokesperson told Variety. The spokesperson also noted that Persson hasn’t been involved with “Minecraft” since he sold the studio and rights to the game in 2014. Persson, once an involved member of the video game development community, has increasingly ostracized himself with his Twitter comments, including transphobic statements and comments about a “heterosexual pride day,” and that “it’s ok to be white.”" In 2017 he also backed a movement called Gamergate. "In 2017, he voiced his support for Gamergate, an alt-right and sexist movement that largely targeted women, LGBTQ, and other minority groups in the industry. At the time, he referred to feminism as a “social disease,” claiming on Twitter that feminists were “overtly sexist against men.” At one point, Persson said that anyone who opposed “heterosexual pride day” should be “shot” and also tweeted “It’s okay to be white” after claiming groups pushing for more diversity and calling out white supremacy were being racist against white people."(taken from Den of Geek) Obviously, these comments are out of line and demonstrate perfectly why he wasn’t invited. In 2020 he actually resorted to delete his twitter account after saying he would if British games journalist Mark Brown "dropped the politics" Notch said this about the situation: “Deleting my twitter account. I entered a deal with @gamemakerstk where he would drop the politics,” Persson wrote on Twitter right before pulling the plug on his account. “One small step towards the old internet.” Mark Brown also said: “Well this is a weird day,” Brown wrote in response. “So, I guess that time [Fable creator] Peter Molyneux started crying during an interview is no longer my strangest interaction with a game developer.”(both quotes taken from Den of Geek.) Minecraft Creator Notch Deletes Twitter Account After Asking GMTK to "Drop the Politics" | Den of Geek In this next article from wired, Notch talks about how he came to fame, all things Minecraft, how he came to make Minecraft and why he made it. "It's the small hours of a Monday in February. Mojang is celebrating two milestones. The first is raising £280,000 for three charities, by making a new game from scratch in 60 hours. The second is selling five million copies of Minecraft, a blocky- looking game created by Persson three years ago." This is the foundation of Minecraft and where it all started. The next part goes into detail about the premise of Minecraft, how it's like no other game, no rules, no objective, it basically tells you what gained it so much popularity. "It isn't like other games. There are no instructions, no levels, no mission structure, no story, no lives, no points, no clear goal. You start Minecraft in the middle of a randomly generated, blocky-looking world about eight times the size of Earth and are completely free to do what you want. You can go exploring or you can get creative. Every block in the world, whether it represents a tree, gravel or rock, can be harvested and subsequently "crafted" into a product -- swords, pickaxes, torches. The two mouse buttons give the game its mechanic: one breaks blocks, the other places them. Your only aim is to survive. As night falls, this gets harder: zombies, spiders and other ne'er-do-wells emerge, meaning you have to find and build shelter. Minecraft doesn't get more complicated than that, which is its appeal: a virtual version of Lego, it offers infinite creativity and control. Where other world- building games such as Sim City allow players to place pre-built structures, Minecraft lets you make anything you want, from huts to cathedrals. The randomly generated worlds stretch forever and can be beautiful: archipelagos or rainforests stretching kilometres high; cave systems with flowing water and lava, and rare metals which offer the possibility of entirely new creations. Minecraft has no beginning and no end." This is a perfect description of what the game does and shows what notch is capable of.
  11. Notch (Markus Persson) The next section of the article talks about how influential the game was, Peter Molyneux said "the best game of the last ten years. [Persson] didn't stick to the old rules of game design that most developers slavishly obey. The gift was giving people a world to play with. Minecraft trusts in people's ability to find their own entertainment in a digital experience, to choose whether they're going to build or destroy. It is a glimpse into a new world of digital entertainment." Ian Livingstone, founder of Games Workshop and the video games adviser for the UK government said: "Persson has singlehandedly changed the world of videogames". And it's true, there really hasn’t been anything so influential and had such a consistent player base since. The number of remakes and copies that are out there is massive and just proves that the game is iconic and will forever be in demand. The game also always has new content in the works, keeping players engaged and wanting to see what's coming next. The next article is about how he had a mini meltdown on twitter, talking about how money hasn’t brought him happiness and how he lost a lot when he sold the company, on twitter he said; "When we sold the company, the biggest effort went into making sure the employees got taken care of, and they all hate me now." The fact that people he used to work with now hate him might relate to what he's said regarding his beliefs on sexuality, gender and women. In my opinion he had it coming, you can't openly say horrific thing and expect people to stay by your side, he also tweeted that he "Found a great girl, but she's afraid of me and my lifestyle and went with a normal person instead." I don’t think it was just his lifestyle that drive her away, the comments he makes would be enough for anyone to call it quits, I think she maybe just didn’t have the heart to tell him the real reason and I don’t blame her. Some other things he tweeted while he was having a breakdown were: "While I appreciate the well-meaning suggestions I turn to God, I'd much rather turn to Kojima." "The problem with getting everything is you run out of reasons to keep trying, and human interaction becomes impossible due to imbalance." The author of the article concludes the text with "Notch’s dilemma (extreme wealth, access, privilege) is a textbook case study on what it means to find true happiness. And guess what? Once you have your basic needs taken care of (clean water, food, shelter, education, etc.) it really doesn’t have anything to do with money, partying or buying things. Go outside and do healthy stuff, find a good community, practice gratitude and give back. Maybe get a dog? Get back to us." She basically just says shut up and get on with it, you're rich and really shouldn't be complaining online where people who have actual financial problems are, go and speak to someone who can actually help you rather than complaining to people less fortunate.
  12. Notch (Markus Persson) A book that mentions Notch is called Minecraft Creator Markus "Notch" Persson by Kari Cornell and was published in 2018. It’s a non-licenced auto biography. Part of the blurb reads: "When he was eighteen, Persson landed his dream job as a video game programmer. In 2009, he designed Minecraft in a single weekend. In the game, players use blocks to build whatever they choose. Persson wanted to let players use their imaginations, and the idea paid off. Today, Minecraft is one of the most popular computer games in the world. Although Persson doubts he will ever top this success, he continues to develop games, while fans wait for what's next." Another book that talks about him is called, The Unlikely Tale of Markus "Notch" Persson and the Game that Changed Everything. It's by Daniel Goldberg and Linus Larsson and was published in 2013. It’s also a biography. The blurbs reads: "A completely unique and in-depth look at the creator of Minecraft, Markus "Notch" Persson, and his rise from unknown computer programmer to multi-millionaire international gaming icon. Minecraft, the "virtual Lego" game Markus crafted in his free time, has become one of the most talked about activities since Tetris. Talked about by tens of millions of people, in fact. It is the story of unlikely success, fast money, and the power of digital technology to rattle an empire. And it is about creation, exclusion, and the feeling of not fitting in. Here Markus opens up for the first time about his life. About his old Lego-filled desk at school. About the first computer his father brought home one day. But also, about growing up in a family marked by drug abuse and conflict. But above all it is the story of the fine line between seeming misfit and creative madman, and the birth of a tech visionary. Minecraft: The Unlikely Tale of Markus "Notch" Persson and the Game that Changed Everything is a Cinderella story for the Internet age."
  13. Todd Howard Todd Howard was former game developer turned director at Bethesda game studios. He originally led development on Skyrim and has since led development on Fallout 3, Fallout 4, Fallout 76, Skynet and more recently the upcoming game set to release in November 2022, Starfield. It’s a space exploration game set 300 years in the future. This passage taken from the official Bethesda site reads: "Starfield is the first new universe in 25 years from Bethesda Game Studios, the award-winning creators of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Fallout 4. In this next generation role-playing game set amongst the stars, create any character you want and explore with unparalleled freedom as you embark on an epic journey to answer humanity’s greatest mystery." The website also offers an email sign up to get the latest information about the game. When it comes to awards has very well accredited from himself to his videogames , 2012 he was given the title of Best Game Director by the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences. He has also been called one of the best game developers by IGN, he is the top 20 of most influential game developers as named by GamePro. Hes been awarded the LARA of honour lifetime achievement award for his influence on the gaming community. Elder Scrolls 4 and 5 won title of the year Spike awards in 2006 and 2011. He also won a D.I.C.E award in 2011.
  14. Todd Howard Todd didn’t start at the top at Bethesda and had to work many different titles, his first game being The Terminator: Future Shock released in 1995, he also worked on the follow up game The Terminator: Skynet. Both of these he worked as a producer and designer. It wouldn’t be until he worked on Skyrim, he began gaining traction, the first 2 games he kept the same titles but the 3rd and 4th games he became project leader. Then he went onto become the leader of the franchise. Since then, a 5th Skyrim was released with the 6th games release on the horizon. There have been many articles about him, from him being a meme to controversy with Fallout 76. When it comes to him being meme, he has 3 about him. Toddposting, Todd the Liar and See that mountain? You can climb it. This section of an article from KnowYourMeme (Todd Howard | Know Your Meme) says a bit more about them. "Toddposting is the act of trying to advertise future Bethesda games in a mockingly blunt and non-sneaky way through photoshopped images of Todd Howard, wearing various disguises and such. Todd the Liar is a nickname given to Todd Howard, due to him sometimes exaggerating the features of the upcoming games during the presentations, or features being cut from the release day. This has brought him the reputation among the fans of him being a bit of a liar has inspired them to make various pieces of media. Several notable videos feature a close-up picture of Todd Howard, constantly zooming in, with the song Little Lies by Fleetwood Mac being played in the background. "See That Mountain? You Can Climb It." is a quote associated with Todd Howard and the video game The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The quote originated from early Skyrim presentations during E3 2011, where the gameplay of Skyrim was shown. In several instances, Todd mentioned being able to climb or otherwise scale mountains you see, due to them not being simple background decorations. The quote became a popular subject of jokes, being mentioned or repeated on various forums and imageboards, and spawning several pieces of media." He also gets involved with the community, for example because of the 10-year anniversary of Skyrim last year (2021) Todd went onto host a reddit AMA on November 10th, basically he will hold a question-and-answer session about his video games. The image at the top of the screen is what was posted onto reddit. Todd Howard is doing a Reddit AMA on November 10 (
  15. Todd Howard Following on from that and going into his controversies. One of the big ones is about the release of Fallout 76 and the game in general. On November 14th, 2018, Fallout 76 was released, and fans were not happy, the game was horrendously buggy, the quest line was dry and not engaging. On Metacritic these are some of thing's fans had to say: "Worst game of 2018. Nothing much to say. I've been a loyal fan of Bethesda, but this game was so bad that I had to terminate to play this game at the fourth day of B.E.T.A." "This hurts me to write. The fallout series has always been my favorite video game franchise. i even enjoyed Fallout 4 enough to purchase it twice even tho it WAS the worst entry in the series. I feel as though we all deserve a formal apology for our wasted money on a broken and un-enjoyable game. They thought that removing the game from the stream store would force more people to buy it bc the score wouldn't be posted next to the name. I'm sorry Todd but your time is up. I felt like giving this game a 1 was honestly even generous. If i could refund I would, and i never thought I would say that about Fallout. Congratulations Bethesda, you hooked me on Oblivion but after this I will add your name to the ranks of EA and other companies who are only in it for the cash and not for the experience." Although there is a sea of bad reviews there are a few that shed light on the game and give a fair view on it: "Regardless of how Fallout 76 transforms and mutates in the months to come, the present version is a brave, imaginative, and rewarding exploration, but its true glory is revealed among friends. "I playing fallout series games since 1997 (i guess) this game is something different that we was having in F1,F2 and now F3 :) but game is still good, story and investigation quests are interesting :) and you will find yourself here playing solo as well, world is beautiful and huge :) Bugs? - almost all games have bugs at start, mmo=bugs :) but do not judge it for that , balance maniacs and perfectionists will have to wait for few months :)."Todd Howard is doing a Reddit AMA on November 10 ( Since 2018 the game as had multiple updates and free DLC's which in my opinion and several people on the internet's opinion has made an impact on the game's playability. With the addition of Wastelanders came NPC's, something the original game had very little of. They also made a road map of everything coming to the game that year, not everything was added and not everything was on time which was quite annoying especially the DLC that was supposed coming in December, it was quite anticipated. I wouldn’t recommend it as a single player game, more as a game to muck around on with friends. A Youtuber called Kevduit made a video talking about the progression of the game and just giving his general review on it and its quite a good watch Aside from the in-game problems, there was also a massive issue with the collector's edition of the game. It cost £179.99, came with the game and a wearable T-51b power armour helmet that came in a canvas bag, or at least that’s what was advertised. When people received their helmets, they were given a cheap plastic bag. Obviously, people were mad as they'd paid a lot of money for cheap rubbish. Thankfully, people were issued refunds and the option to have the actual bag sent to them. This article from EuroGamer goes into the situation in a bit more depth. 7 months later, Bethesda has finally delivered the Fallout 76 canvas bags • "Seven months after Fallout 76 came out, Bethesda has finally delivered the canvas bags those who bought the £179.99 Power Armour Edition of the game thought they were going to get originally. For the uninitiated, the backlash to Fallout 76 "bag-gate", or as our Emma likes to call it, "the kerduffel", saw an outcry from owners of the Fallout 76 Power Armour Edition of the game, which was supposed to come with a canvas West Tek bag but instead came with a cheap nylon alternative. In total, the episode saw Bethesda issue curt customer service responses, retrospectively change the advertising on its website, claim the reason for the swap was due to the price of canvas, and initially apologise with a meagre amount of in-game currency (along with laying the blame for those customer service responses on a temporary contract worker). It was all a bit of a mess. In December 2018, Bethesda said it was manufacturing replacement canvas bags - and now they're turning up." The image on the right is a comparison of the 2 bags, nylon on the right and canvas on the right.
  16. Jan-Bart van Beek Jan-Bart van Beek is one of the studio directors at Guerrilla Game Studios along with Angie Smets and Michiel van der Leeuw. He began working at Guerrilla formal at that time known as Lost Boys Studios in 1999. His first job there was as 3D artist/animator, he says on his LinkedIn profile: "I was originally hired as a freelance animator to deliver a trailer movie with the purpose of pitching the project that would eventually become Killzone to Sony Computer Entertainment. After the trailer was done, I decided to stay on as full-time staff." He then went onto become one of the lead technical artists. Also from his LinkedIn profile, he says: Early on understanding the need for a true Technical Art department I initiated the creation of such a department and trained and recruited the team members. One of my accomplishments was the successful design of Lost Boys Games/Guerrilla Games animationBlender software. A tool that is completely aimed at animator-controlled composing of animation blending diagrams that can be used in a real-time game engine. The core concept of this tool has been given to some of Guerrilla's partners and has evolved into similar software produced by Havok and NaturalMotion. Then in 2002 Lost Boys Studios became Guerrilla at which point he was appointed lead artist, handling the art production team. The next project he took part in was for a trailer of their game Killzone 2, he was asked to direct the trailer, it has since been seen over a million times and has been downloaded from over 1.4 million times. In 2005 he would become a game director, he was responsible for the creative process, the quality of the game, communicating and upholding the vision of the game. While still being a game director in 2006 he started doing some work as an Art and Animation Director, he says this on his LinkedIn profile: In the role of Art and Animation Director I'm responsible for developing, communicating and implementing the visual style of the Killzone franchise and as such am responsible for the visual quality of the game. I work closely with the Game Code and Technology Code departments and initiate the development of many new graphics and animation features. Together with the Art Producer I'm responsible for the efficiency of the Art and Animation team. We're constantly developing new working practices that increase speed and quality of the Art and Animation team." After 8 years of being an Art Director he became a studio director and is still int that position to date. Jan- Bart van Beek - Studio Director - Guerrilla | LinkedIn
  17. Jan-Bart van Beek In 2017 Jan took part in an interview for in which they talk about his time at Guerrilla games from Killzone to Horizon Zero Dawn. Guerrilla Games: "We've gone from designing rollercoaster rides to theme parks" | He firstly talks about how Horizon came to be, "We wanted to something that was action-orientated, character-driven, something that was an exciting leap away from Killzone, because we'd been doing Killzone for about 15 years." They didn’t want to make another Battlefield or COD or Overwatch, he said in the interview, we wanted to do something we could really shine at. "So, we decided to move away from our bread and butter - making first-person shooters - and work on something the studio was excited about making, something new." The way Horizon came to be was during a pitch meeting where his idea was going against 30-35 others, fortunately his came out on top and have us the opportunity to play an amazing game. "Van Beek's original concept already had many of the ingredients that define Horizon: Zero Dawn in its final state: robot dinosaurs, a post-apocalyptic world reclaimed by the beauty of nature, and even protagonist Aloy." From here he talks about his influences like Skyrim, Bladerunner and Ridley Scott, one of the main ones being Fallout 3, they said "they sought new ways to give players both agency and freedom." Although they were inspired by things, they also knew that they couldn’t get too caught up in what others had done and make it as original as possible. In his conclusion to the article, he talks briefly about how videogames are so important and bring a new way of seeing and experiencing things. "How much should we try to control the story rather than letting players find their own story and just providing the context of the world?" he says. "In some ways, Westworld was an eye-opener for a lot of people who are dealing with narrative in games. It was interesting, but could it actually be designed? These vastly sprawling interactive story networks that multiple people can interact with... And there are certainly aspects [of interactive storytelling] that only video games can do, and no other medium can do."
  18. Male Gaze Theory The male gaze theory is a theory created by Laura Mulvey and is based around the concept that women in the media are portrayed a certain way for the viewership of men. Since the dawn of media women have been portrayed as objects for men, in a article from the author Sarah Vanbuskirk talks about the general knowledge of the male gaze theory. I choose this article as it seemed like the most appropriate piece of writing to cover, and it was also fact checked so I know it’s a decent piece of research. In the overview she talks about the origin of the theory and talks about the whole issue rather than just talking about how women are viewed movies she talks about the extent of the experience of being seen the way they are seen. She talks about how the male gaze warps women's perception of themselves and makes them have a need to fit into this false perception created by men. This is what she says about the topic; “The term "male gaze" was first popularized in relation to the depiction of female characters in film as inactive, often overtly sexualized objects of male desire. However, the influence of the male gaze is not limited to how women and girls are featured in the movies. Rather, it extends to the experience of being seen in this way, both for the female figures on screen, the viewers, and by extension, to all girls and women at large. Naturally, the influence of the male gaze seeps into female self-perception and self-esteem. It's as much about the impact of seeing other women relegated to these supporting roles as it is about the way women are conditioned to fill them in real life. The pressure to conform to this patriarchal view (or to simply accept or humour it) and endure being seen in this way shapes how women think about their own bodies, capabilities, and place in the world—and that of other women.” In another section of the article, she talks about the history of the male gaze, she talks about who came up with and published the theory Laura Mulvey and what the essay she wrote about male gaze theory talks about. “British feminist film theorist Laura Mulvey described the concept of the "male gaze" in her 1973 essay "Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema," which was published in 1975 in the film theory magazine Screen. In the article, Mulvey, who is a professor of film and media studies at Birkbeck, University of London, explained the way that mainstream media objectifies women, showing the female body through a heterosexual male lens as a passive non-actor secondary to the active male characters.” This next part of the history section came at the end of the section but still seemed like an important element to talk about as it sort of summaries the argument Laura was talking about. “The argument is that the male gaze controls the narrative, which is that women are not equal actors in the world. Instead, their agency is reduced to that of an erotic or supporting object, with their value as a female form (and person) reduced to how it appeals to the male viewer and/or to how threatening (or not) it is to the stereotypical male perspective.”
  19. Male Gaze Theory Sarah makes a point to add a highlighted piece of information which is really insightful and a good fact to know when talking about this subject. “The impact of the male gaze has been internalized to a certain extent by both men and women—and we may not always even be aware of its presence or how it influences our choices and vision of ourselves and others.” When going through the article I felt this was a good point to add as its true and not something you would actually think about, its just normal at this point to see a woman in a bikini for no reason. In the next section she talks about understanding the male gaze, here is piece of the section, I felt this was the most important as it has the most resourcefulness. “In order to understand the male gaze, you need to recognize it. Typical examples are female film characters whose main purpose in driving the plot seems to be to be attractive, sexy, and/or to feed the sexual interest or agenda of the male characters. They wear heels and tight dresses (even if they are police detectives who may need to pursue a suspect) and while they may be shown in a variety of contexts, their primary motivation rests on being the helper, eye candy, or romantic interest.” The next part is also related to the male gaze section. “The bodies of these women are used to sell and attract (predominantly heterosexual male) attention. Female celebrities pose provocatively on the covers of magazines, male stars (usually fully dressed) pose alongside minimally-dressed models or simply on their own. The message is that men are provocative enough without showing a lot of skin.” The next two parts of the article go hand in hand, talking about whether or not the male gaze is harmful and the effects of it. Here I have the what I feel is the most important information from these sections; “To get a sense of the full ramifications of the male gaze, it's vital to recognize how the representations of women within film and various other forms of media filter out from those movies, magazine layouts, and pinup images to inform how women are viewed by society-at-large. Consider how the other characters within the movie, ad, or social media post react to and see these passive, often nearly-naked women as well as the experience of the people taking it in as viewers. Continually seeing girls and women serve as prizes for men and acting without much agency of their own except to jockey for male attention, influences male and female perceptions of female value, purpose, sexuality, and power.” In the section about the male gaze being harmful it talks about how the male gaze is an addition to some women's struggles, she says; “For people in traditionally marginalized groups, the male gaze is an added burden. For example, Black women have historically been depicted as being hypersexual by the male gaze, which adds another facet of stereotype to the pervasive racism they face. Similarly, the male gaze also fetishizes Asian (and lesbian women, as long as the man can watch or participate), portraying them as exotic, erotic specimens for male enjoyment. the blonde bombshell (also known as the ditzy blonde or airhead) is another common trope.”
  20. Male Gaze Theory The next section id like to talk about is the mental health impacts, this is a huge factor of the impact of the male gaze and effects a lot of women. “These are big questions that often don't get much attention. However, that doesn't mean that these issues aren't at play—whether it's consciously or subconsciously. But the accumulated impact of living under the male gaze does more than simply alter how a woman poses for the camera, the types of characters they see in their favourite TV shows, or how it feels to them to be seen out in the world. In fact, the objectification of women has a profound mental health impacts—and social media has become a particularly potent method of disseminating the reach of the male gaze.” This is a huge part of the theory and I'm surprised its not talked about more as so mny women suffer from it, social media is a massive part of daily life and impacts people so much that its just become a normal thing to scroll and feel jealous of people, it’s a viscous cycle of seeing good looking people and then posting your own good looking photos and then someone else will see that photo and do the same thing. Its so unhealthy to have to live that way, constantly worrying about how you look and what people think of you and it’s the cause for a lot of mental health problems.
  21. Male Gaze Theory After looking up YouTube videos I came across a video called 'The Dangers of The Male Gaze' by a woman called cutiecaryn on YouTube. Through watching it she makes some good points and I felt that should be included in my research. She starts with a personal story about seeing a man staring at a group of women at a drive through and then scaring him off with her dog, this is that relevant, but it outlines how some men are really open about how they see women and its alarming. She then speaks about the question: why does the male gaze exist? Shes starts with talking a movement called menimist which started out as a twitter account mocking feminists and generally degrading women. The account eventually got banned in 2017. She then talks about being asked if she was a feminist by men and denying it and then being applauded for not being a 'crazy feminist.' The only reason she denied it though was she was afraid to call herself a feminist and agree with their views. She says, "I let the male gaze stop me from speaking my mind." (I can from personal experience say I've done the same thing or when I have said I am I've been called a femi-nazi. I just wanted to fit in my guy friends, so I hid my real opinions.) Other women would also not call themselves feminists for the same reasons. This was all done to be able to have male friends/ impress them and it worked. She then talks about why we acted this way; it was fed by an almost need for the approval of men. She then says, "why as a society are we basing what is right off of what the majority of men think?" This is important because its deep rooted in history that men's opinions come first and this is the reason we live the way do, even to this say we are still being oppressed by men and their opinions without even knowing it from trends that please men to expectations of the female physique set by a male game character designer. Some of it is obvious and some of it is men's opinions in the past still being used to control women and the way they look.
  22. Male Gaze Theory She then talks about how she tested the male gaze. To test it out she will join work business meeting with that boyfriend does with him, sometimes she will wear fake glasses and sometimes she wont, when she isn't wearing glasses she's seen as his arm candy/girlfriend/shes respected, but when she does wear glasses all the men start asking her questions and they talk to her like she's more educated. She then says how she went further with the test, she wore glasses for the first half of the meeting and then took them off for the other half of the meeting. When she'd take them off she'd catch the guys just staring at her when she wasn’t talking. By taking the glasses off she put more attention on herself without talking. At the end of the meeting she puts them back on and she says they feel the same way as they did before she took them off, intelligent and educated. But they also saw her in a 'personal' way, they sat down with her and actually got to know her without realising it was the glasses. She then talks about the question "can men and women be friends?" Most say yes but when it comes down to it but a lot women are scared of these friendships because men ruin it by asking them out. It wrecks the trust that women have of men and makes them afraid that guys only want to be friends with them so you would with them and they never actually wanted to get to know you. She then talks about women being portrayed in media being stupid and annoying, it makes women believe that that’s all they are, stupid and annoying, it also goes into women being sad in movies, drinking in a bathtub, eating ice-cream and crying, basically lying about how women actually act. She then talks about how the male gaze was used against men. A musical group marina and the diamonds made a music video featuring men in pants showering and dancing, literally mirroring what women do in the background of men's music videos. This created a lot of controversy and men would say things like "if you don’t want us to objectify women don’t objectify us." She also says that the male gaze also hurts men too, it harms them mentally, like not being able to talk about their emotions.
  23. Male Gaze Theory This is an article by Tori Telfer on the website Vulture the article is called How do we define the female gaze in 2018?It includes some really good points from both sides of the argument and opinions from celebrities arguing if its real. A camera pans slowly over the curves of a woman’s body — and every woman in the audience rolls her eyes. That sensual, ravenous, kinda porn-y perspective? It’s our old friend, the male gaze, a theoretical term coined in 1975 by the film critic Laura Mulvey that’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like. In cinema, the male gaze looks while the female body is looked at; the gaze can come from the audience, from a male character within the film, or from the camera itself. Think of the scene in Transformers, when Megan Fox “fixes” a car by leaning sensuously toward its engine as the camera slithers around her taut abs (she’s wearing a crop top, of course), and then up the front of her body, and then down her back. It’s palpably gross. We’ve seen the technique onscreen a million times. This month, the Film Society at Lincoln Center attempts to counter all those gratuitous panning shots by presenting “The Female Gaze,” a survey of 36 films made with female cinematographers — a relatively rare breed of artist. “Few jobs on a movie set have been as historically closed to women as that of cinematographer,” the Film Society writes. “The persistence of the term ‘cameraman’ says it all.” The collected films range from the raw and dangerous (Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer, shot by Joan Churchill) to the disorienting and heartbreaking (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, shot by Ellen Kuras), with plenty of emotional shades in between. What is the female gaze, then? It’s emotional and intimate. It sees people as people. It seeks to empathize rather than to objectify. (Or not.) It’s respectful,it’s technical, it hasn’t had a chance to develop, it tells the truth, it involves physical work, it’s feminine and unashamed, it’s part of an old-fashioned gender binary, it should be studied and developed, it should be destroyed, it will save us, it will hold us back. The female cinematographers involved in the project have as many opinions on the female gaze and its helpfulness (or lack thereof) as you might expect from a group of talented, thoughtful, highly trained people who are more than just “female cinematographers.” Here’s what a few of them have to say about how they see the world from behind their cameras.
  24. Male Gaze Theory The female gaze is highly relational: Kirsten Johnson, Derrida and Cameraperson: “Filming is physical work in which one is seeing and being seen. What compels me most about it is the constant searching. I think of filmed images as active relationships. These relationships come into being in the moment of filming and they continue to shift as they are seen and seen again on into the future. Every person in the equation, including each new viewer, becomes a part of this active relationship. That I filmed someone, and they felt my looking and still carried on — this is the relationship I am talking about and it is the source of the aliveness that I aspire to in my work.” The female gaze is still fairly new: Babette Mangolte, Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles: “In the early 1970s when I arrived in New York from Paris, there definitely was the desire to invent a female gaze. Women started to shoot films made by women and also for women. We all felt that men had shown their point of view since the beginning of the world and we now should try to find if we could invent a new language that would be different from the one of our fathers or lovers.” The female gaze looks like…: Joan Churchill: “Susan Meiselas is one of my sheroes. A photojournalist who first came to my attention in 1976 when she did the amazing book Carnival Strippers, she uses stills, film, audio, video, and archive to present to us her experiences of following the people she points her camera at.” The future is female gaze-y: Natasha Braier, The Milk of Sorrow: “It’s kind of sad that we are at a such basic level today where we have to talk about the female gaze and this rare group of women who are just 4 percent of a male-dominated field. I understand the conversation is needed, because we need to improve that. But I wish that, in the near future, this conversation will be obsolete.” There is no female gaze: Ashley Connor: “Believing in a female gaze means I believe in the male gaze and I hope we’re moving towards a world not bound to gender binaries.”
  25. Male Gaze Theory This is an article by Emily Gray on NUA website, it discusses the changing role of women in film The film industry, that powerful, ongoing excellence that has always been filled with gender equality, female protagonists and equal star pay… right? Wrong. Women in film have most definitely had a rough ride, so buckle up as we dive right in to how the representation of females in film has developed (and by that I mean, improved) over time! The Golden Age Rewinding it back to 60’s Hollywood Cinema first, where the likes of Hitchock, Billy Wilder and Robert Wise thrived – their female cast members however… not quite so much! It may be surprising to read that women in 60’s cinema weren’t exactly represented as they would be in a 21st century film. Actresses of the ‘Golden Age’ (Marlyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn) were valued (mostly) for their slim appearance and beauty, making them perfect candidates for love interests in Hollywood films… and nothing else. Now, believe it or not – back in the 60’s, women in film were tied to strict contracts, practically glueing them to their designated director for a number of films (and therefore many years) leaving no room for career development, given the same carbon copy role of ‘the love interest, with their sole job being to support the performance of the male protagonist’… in simpler terms ‘make the men look better’… thank goodness for change! Women in 21st century film have blossomed into protagonists, directors and family favourites, paying homage to the ladies who laid the groundwork in the 60’s, making it possible for women to be represented as they are today! Thank you, Golden Age women! Where would we be without them? The 21st Century Pulling forward to the 21st century, away from the sexualisation/exploitation of women in cinema to the celebration of women in film! The development of the role of the female has been rapid and extremely positive, now we have strong female leads/roles/directors in almost every film we see! For example, the role of Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games; a strong, independent woman who ultimately (spoiler alert!) wins the game by using not her looks, her sexuality or her femininity – but by simply outsmarting the rulers of the game! Katniss’s character is the perfect example of the knowledgeable woman, celebrated for her brains over beauty! The strong female roles of today (Captain Marvel, Katniss Everdeen, Valkyrie, Wonder Woman – to name a few!) show a true development of how women are represented in film, and are now celebrated for their strong roles, comparing this to 60s cinema… the representation really has improved, and is ever improving… from hardship to protagonist, the role of the women will always be pivotal in film.
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