Sat. Apr 20th, 2024

Skullgirls Double Down On Censorship

By Baiting Irrelevance Jul15,2023
Skullgirls Double DownSkullgirls Double Down

Skullgirls announced they would censor certain parts of their game a few weeks ago. Since then, the gaming community has not been too happy with them. The developers, however, remain firm in their stance and refuse to back down. This comes as little surprise as most knew the decision to censor certain parts of the game would be final. Despite Skullgirls standing firm in their judgment, fans still voiced their displeasure. Many took to social media to let developers know how they felt about this recent decision. Many also took to Steam to update their reviews of the game.

In a few days, reviews for this game went from very positive to mostly negative. This sudden change in reviewer score can be viewed as review bombing. However, some argue that this situation does not fit those criteria. Developers made decisions that directly affected the game. They removed certain content from the game; therefore, people could voice their displeasure. You have the right to update your game, and I have the right to update my review. Steam, however, does not agree with this type of thinking.

Due to the influx of negative reviews against the game, Steam took a page from Skullgirls and censored the reviews. All of the recent negative reviews are now hidden, and Steam and the game are back to the majority of positive reviews. Although I agree that review bombs can be annoying, decisions that directly affect a game are not review bombings. Skullgirls did not change the gameplay, but they still decided to cover up a visual aspect that many gamers liked.

How Steam Covers For Skullgirls

Steam’s policy to hide negative reviews is nothing new. They have a policy that states they will hide any influx of reviews that are not linked to the game. It is worth noting that this only counts for negative reviews. If a developer makes a ridiculous statement disrespecting fans, you cannot go to the game and give them a negative score. If you do this, Steam will regard it as reviews that are not relevant to the game and hide them. It is worth mentioning that they will only be doing this for negative reviews. If a developer says something you like and there is an influx of positive reviews not irrelevant to the game, they will not be hidden.

5-skullgirls-characters-body-1_jpg_820
5-skullgirls-characters-body-1_jpg_820

This is one of the significant flaws in deciding this. Dishonest positive reviews can have an equally negative impact on a game. We see this happen all the time in the movie industry as well. When there is outrage toward a movie, fans will give it a 1 out of 10 rating. Other fans often counter this by delivering the film a 10 out of 10. Review sites like rotten tomatoes will delete the 1-star reviews but leave the 10-star reviews. They do this because they do not consider an influx of positive reviews as review bombing.

Steam is very strict with its rules. Even if there are issues that plenty within the community care about, like DRM or EULA changes, they will not consider them. This is sometimes a good thing. Fighting for a stricter review system is overall good for the community. However, a loose line can quickly get out of hand.

Why People Are Mad At The Skullgirls Censorship

While game reviews should be about the game, censoring in-game content is very relevant. You have the right not to like that, and you have the right to voice it. These types of concerns should not be hidden on Steam. People are very sensitive toward any issue that involves censorship. Most feel that there is a drive within the video game industry to change certain aspects of a game. These changes are particularly prevalent when it comes to any attractive female character.

Skullgirls
Skullgirls

For a few years now, narratives have formed that the portrayal of women within video games is sexist. They serve as nothing more than eye candy for men. On the other hand, you have people who push back, stating that this is not true. While their beautiful women in revealing close exist, this is not inherently sexist. People like watching attractive people. Often these women in revealing clothes do badass things, so there is nothing wrong with having them in games.

Characters like Lara Craft are allowed to be attractive and strong. It does not have to be one or the other. Girls are allowed to be ruthless in fighting games and also attractive. Men are also typically beautiful and well-built. It is what people want. Others, however, push back against this, saying women do not have to be half-naked to be strong. A more diverse group of players will be drawn to the game by including more regular-looking people. While you might alienate some players, you will attract a new, more progressive base that is less toxic. This is thinking that I’m afraid I certainly have to disagree with.

Fans React To Skullgirls Censorship

The fan reaction to steam-hiding reviews has been interesting to observe. Most agree that it is not a good look for them. While Steam argues that these complaints are irrelevant to the game, fans state that potential buyers deserve to know they won’t get the game as advertised. Skullgirls uses particular images in their promotional material to attract fans. Since fan service exists for a reason, some might go over and buy the game because of this reason. The developers might no longer want this crowd, but the buyers have the right to know things.

Skullgirls censorship
Skullgirls censorship

If your trailers on YouTube show one thing and the game is entirely different, then it would be deceptive marketing. Skullgirls insist these changes remain, so they must update their current trailers and posters. If they don’t do this, Steam needs a disclaimer stating that specific visual changes were made to the game. You can’t sweep these changes under the rug and hide any reference to them. It is this type of deception that is angering fans. While developers have the right to change their games, they are also responsible for being honest.

They made one post about this on Reddit and closed off all comments. Further than this, no reference to these changes is mentioned. However, as stated, they no longer use the same marking material in their title. All of this is making some fans of the game question if they want to continue playing this game. On a personal note, I will say one thing. Boycotts never work, and fans should not attempt it. If you still enjoy the gameplay, you should continue playing the game.

Conclusion

Plenty of hardworking developers have nothing to do with these changes. While some recent developers might be annoying, the gameplay matters the most. For many, this is still a great game; if that is how you feel, you should continue supporting them. Alternatively, you should stop playing the game if censoring is bothering you. Do not listen to online media outlets trying to gaslight you into thinking this does not matter. You are allowed to be annoyed by censorship.

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61 thoughts on “Skullgirls Double Down On Censorship”
  1. […] The original Skullgirls was just delisted from the Xbox store, and fans are unhappy. Over the last few months, Skullgirls have come under heavy fire from some fans over what they deem to be censorship. The internet reacted quickly when Encore announced that they would change their game. If you are unaware, censorship in video games has been a hotly contested topic for many years. There is an ongoing trend within the gaming community where certain publishers update and remove or censor offensive content. Typically, this type of content involves that of a suggestive nature. […]

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