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[POLL] On the subject of women in GoW art

I’m honestly curious if anyone else has been bothered by the fact that even bees and goblins have to be drawn with a pinched waist and a huge bust or if the general consensus is that this is the only interesting/appropriate way to present the women of GoW. Answer honestly, it’s a general anonymous poll! But feel free to post your feedback in the comments!

EDIT: I worded the poll incorrectly, I wanted it to show that current art wouldn’t be changed and was directly related to future art specifically as it would probably be confusing if current art was changed, sorry everybody!

  • I’d like to see more diverse representations of women in the artwork in the future
  • Keep future art as-is, I prefer looking at traditionally attractive women
  • I’m completely neutral and wouldn’t care if future art was 100% as-is or 100% more diverse

0 voters

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I can think of several females that are not traditionally attractive (fist of Zorn, Apothecary and Queen Grapplepot) and a few that could be considered gender neutral (Emperina and Tesla come to mind). In addition the same can be said for many of the male characters. There are a few of each that are typically “traditionally” attractive but over all they are pretty varied. Which is great since we have a varied population in this community.
We even have cards that are unattractive in appearance but best cards to have which supports the idea of worth beyond physical beauty. I’m pretty happy over all with the variety.

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I agree. Put a scar on her face or something to take the sexiness down a notch.

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Baba Yaga: old. Berengari: thicker waist and smaller chest. Emperina: dragon. Florian: body obscured, Hag: old. Ixchel: pinched waist with a small chest. Jewel Gnome: modestly dressed and doesn’t appear to have quad Ds or a pinched waist, either way still wearing clothes. Justice: debatable as boob plates drawn on armor usually indicates a “sexy” character but the art isn’t entirely suggestive all things considered. Lady Ironbeard: dwarf. Naga queen: naga. Night Hag: old. Nyx: monster. Queen Aurora: unicorn. Queen Grapplepot: goblin and different body type. Sister Superior: bigger. Tesla: modestly dressed (I suppose I could have also missed some lore on why this is a gender neutral character and everyone has their own headcannon), I’ll still say this is a half point at best but I’ll count the full point as it’s not cleavage in the face and scantily clad. Tyri: mostly facing away from the point of focus. Vanya: rad zombie. Viper: naga. Webspinner, Unicorn, and Tina are listed as “she” on the flavor blurb as well and count as such. This is out of the 152 cards I counted up, or a total of 22/152 unless I missed some more animals/robots/dragons referred to as “she” in the flavor blurb as well as it being before my coffee and just possibly missing them in general. There are several like the Fist of Zorn and Frostfire Troll I chose not to count as despite having monstrous faces, they also have pinched waists, abs, and huge chests. Again, the original post was pointing out body types and not weird faces. Sexy bees, sexy trolls, sexy goblins, and sexy orcs were all counted as such.

Total: 14%

This is up against the men (also counting old and not framed in the shot as we did so for the women). I had a tougher time with this since men are allowed to be considered sexy with more than one body type, so I went with cartoonishly jacked, especially with an exposed 6-pack being the male equivalent of difficult to attain physical attractiveness based largely on genetics and counted the difference based on that. I also counted troops like the Bandit who had extremely tight clothes over what was probably a buff body, despite it being extremely modest. A lot of these could still be considered “sexy” based on personal opinion, but that could also be said about some of the women. Sexy daemons, sexy horse men, sexy cat bois, etc were all also counted for this one.

Acolyte: old and shoulders-up, on the thinner side. Alchemist: old. Aziris: shoulders-up. Bishop: old. Black Bjorn: armored in non-latex armor. Boar rider: body covered monsterface. Bog Strider: giant vine monster. Bonebinder: old with baggy clothing. Brian the Lucky: big. Caprinicus: old goat wizard. Corrupt troll: big and troll. Court Jester: arm covering body but decidedly pec-less. Crab Man: crab. Crimson Arrow: decidedly more adorable than sexy. Dark Troll: troll, skinny and haggard looking. Death: Faceless and shapeless. Deck Hand: Big. Draconian Monk: somewhat buff but wearing large, baggy clothes to cover the pecs/6-pack. Dwarven Hunter: dwarf. Dwarven Miner: dwarf. Dwarven Slayer: dwarf. (At this point, mostly through the Ds we have more diversity in body type than the women) Dwarven Zombie: dwarf and undead. Elf-Eater: Big with sweet nipple rings. Emperor Korvash: still jacked but also off-camera with it focusing more on his battle beast. Emperor Liang: obscured body with baggy clothes. Envy: withered and no face. Ettin: big. Excavator: dwarf. Fenrir: hiding body and messed up face. Fangblade: Naga. First Mate Axelubber: big. Flesh Golem: Big and a flesh golem. Fomorian: look at him. Forest Troll: big and also a troll. Frost Giant: mostly obscured through armor and beard. Ghoul: huge hole in stomach, scrawny. Gloom Leaf: made out of fire leaves. Gob-Chomper: big and monstrous. Goblin King: big. Gog and Gud: obscured and look big. Gorgotha: fire daemon. Grave Seer: emaciated. Half-Mane: scrawny and positioned body-away from focus. Hellcackle: dumpy. Hellspawn: big. High King Irongut: big and boily. King Highforge: old and dwarf but surprisingly jacked. King Mikhail: a bit on the thicker side but still very jacked. Lil Johnny Bronze: Big. Leshy: Big. Mad Prophet: old and thin. Merchant Prince: big. Moneylender: big. Mortlach Stoutbeard: dwarf. Peasant: shoulders up picture and baggy clothes. Prince Ethoras: thin with baggy clothes. Raven: thin with baggy clothes. Royal Engineer: scrawny with large clothes. Shadowblade: thin with larger clothes. Sir Gwayne: old with armor not vacuum-sealed on. Sloth: see-through ribs. Spiritmane: thin with baggy robes. Stonebiter: big. Stonehammer: dwarf. Summer imp: beer gut. Tassarion: old with baggy robes. The Deep King: fishy and mostly obscured by giant claw. The Faceless one: shoulders up and practical armor. Toadsqueezer: mostly obscured by beard and clothing. Trickster: mostly obscured by larger clothing. Vampire Lord: shoulders up and modestly dressed. Vlad the Unsated: scrawny. Wazir: gut and thin. Wight: shoulders-up with large armor. Wraith: old and thin. Zombie: big old hole in stomach where 6-pack should be.
As well we have Black Beast, Festival Cow, Giant Toad, Guardian of the Fields, and possibly a couple more as this one was more fatiguing than the other list. 80/234

Total for the men: 34% more body diversity with 2 body types being counted as the primary “sexy” type versus the one type for women.

****Before you point it out, I was going back through and know I missed more of the men and possibly a few women but to be fair, I hadn’t intended on sitting and writing all of this out and I still haven’t had my coffee after putting a good hour into this. As a cursory list I think it sums things up quite well.

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I’m neutral and I wouldn’t mind if the general art stay as it is (as long as it has quality, even the ugly women/men should have great artwork) or if it leans towards more body types and or evolutionary function and accuracy.

It does raises a serious question:
The “boobees” on Queen Beetrix: Are they where the royal jelly comes from?

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In a game with Green Slimes, Sand Sharks, Void Portal, other inanimate objects, and dragons… all I can say is, who cares?

Its a fantasy world. Their way of living is up to them and it would be unnatural to adjust a fantasy world to real world standards.

And realistically speaking? If people are going to make a fuss about this stuff, they really could just make every troop blank with no art. Equality for all. Most of the art don’t even matter if the troop isn’t useful.

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Dont look for validation in a game. It’s just that … a game.

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It was decided before … they are BUZZongas.

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Well other games have their own… curious details about the female’s anatomy:

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Let’s not forget this female troop who is clearly packin’ heat, as it were.

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Hoo boy. I know where this thread might end up so let me try and step out of it and into metadiscussion.

How much substance there is to this topic is directly proportional to A) Is OP a woman and B) is OP offended.

Through making several threads like this, I have learned as a male that it’s not 100% welcome to women if I am eager to be offended for them and fight for their honor in places where they haven’t even established they are offended yet. They also don’t like it if, after the fact, I draw it to their attention and ask them if they’re offended. It’s sort of like throwing a pie in their face. They were having a nice evening, what kind of person brings them something they might hate?

So OP if you are a woman looking for solidarity, the rest of the post isn’t for you. If you aren’t, then it is. Either way, this post is for the rest of everybody in the hopes that I can help some people gain a more healthy relationship with feminism.

Let’s first cover generalisms: that Bill Cosby or Donald Trump exists does not mean all males are rapists. In fact, any argument that states men just naturally objectify anything they see is void. We should treat men like people who are responsible for their own actions, and dole out consequences when those actions are bad. Likewise, not every woman is an emotional wreck who gets the vapors when a monster she has killed multiple times appears, that’s actually just the fake Samus Aran in Metroid: Other M. Nor is every woman a militant feminist who thinks every man should be jailed and forced into slavery. The fact is the bulk of people fall somewhere in between these spectrums.

That said, it should be the job of every man or woman to act with extreme prejudice and disgust when they do meet one of the slimeballs in their midst. Some so-called feminists give women a bad name, just like some so-called woke men give men a bad name, just like some “followers of God” make the faith seem questionable. So yes, “NOT ALL MEN”, but let’s be clear: men who don’t call out men who are bad are enablers of bad men.

Likewise, people who say “don’t let one rotten apple spoil the bunch” are wrong. If you were buying apples and found a rotten one, you’d expect the farmer to throw that shit away, not demand you pay full price for it. Rotten food is infested with mold and bacteria that spreads to the rest of the food and makes it spoil faster. Don’t protect it. Burn it. Make it clear the bunch (your gender-culture-analogue) rejects rotten people.

This is partly because society has forgiven men who are rotten for a long time, and told women to just deal with it. So women have no clue if a random man is rotten or good until they are already in a bad situation with the man. So it’s no surprise they are fearful. A “good man”'s job is to make it clear that men, in general, will kick the ass of those problem men. Good men aren’t winning that battle. While you can reverse that and point out there are problem women that women are equally unlikely to address, the fact still remains that a man can openly brag that he forces models in his beauty contest to have sex with him (rape) and be elected leader of the country. That says a lot of bad things about BOTH men and women. There’s a small, roughly 30% segment of the country that believes, “I think a rapist is qualified to be my leader and I will violently suppress you if you disagree.” Only another 30% showed up to disagree. That says really bad things for the 40% of the country that said, “Look, I don’t want to get involved, maybe rapists are OK, maybe they aren’t, just make sure I have a job. I don’t want to have an opinion about it.”

There’s also not really a concept of “balance” when things are wrong. A rotten apple spoils the bunch. It doesn’t matter if it’s 10 apples, 100 apples, or 1,000 apples, you don’t want a rotten apple in your shipment if you can avoid it, and people are willing to pay more money for guarantees they don’t get rotten apples. So it doesn’t matter if GoW art is 50/50 tasteful and offensive, the offensive (if so) art doesn’t magically stop being offensive.

It’s sort of like how there’s no way this sentence comes out as less than an insult, and I’m using this member because I think he’ll appreciate me using him specifically as an insult target: “Bless UKResistance’s heart, he may be an illiterate serial murderer but did you know he’s run an animal rescue that’s saved ten thousand baby ducks?” Like, what is that sentence even trying to do? It turns out bad things overpower good things, or “a rotten apple spoils the bunch.”

So I hope that addresses the most void arguments that will appear:

  • “You’re just outraged for no reason.” (Which is true, if OP is a man who didn’t make this post at the explicit request of a woman who felt too intimidated to make it.)
  • “Well I’m a man and I’m not offended.” (Good for you, this opinion holds no weight.)
  • “Well my friend is a woman and she plays so it’s not offensive.” (She could be afraid to tell you she’s offended, or she could possibly be a rotten woman, your opinion of her status doesn’t matter.)
  • “Well I’m a woman and I’m not offended.” (Your opinion is valid and welcome, offense is a subjective thing and your opinion is more valuable than some rando male “ally” opinion, even if there is a possibility you are wrong.)
  • “Ugh this again, look, some things have big titty in them and if you don’t like it you can get out.” (This is… somewhat of a valid opinion. A private “big titty let’s enjoy it” club is ok if all people involved consent. Does GoW want to be that kind of game? That’s a Sirrian issue, which means we’ll never get an answer he stands behind because his opinions change with the orientation of his boss, just like a certain Definitely Best Man of a President.)
  • “It’s OK to have big titty if some of the women are ugly” is just sort of helping hammer in the nail that it’s offensive. Don’t make that argument.

So I can’t put forth much of a personal opinion on this. I’m a non-binary man, and I find a lot of GoW art tends to appeal to the Conan projection of fantasy art, where every woman is a giant-breasted baby vessel meant to be a prize for a man who slays a demon. But at the same time I got in trouble once for pointing out Queen Titania was attractive and had fairly reasonable combat armor for a mage: mostly that she didn’t have an armored bra and her armor has the kind of surface that doesn’t introduce a weak point at the cleavage.

The trick is deciding and reacting to:

  • If GoW is trying to be offensive. (I don’t think there’s a strong case for that.)
  • If players are offended. (This is tough, because players who are risk being harassed and intimidated into being quiet.)
  • If the community allows assholes to intimidate offended people into silence. (I think there is a high probability.)
  • How GoW reacts to the information if players mount a large-scale campaign. (We aren’t here yet.)

Personally I think GoW puts its art style’s depiction of women on the table with no shame. I don’t think it believes it’s offensive. I don’t think the story snippets we have indicate the same kind of objectification Conan fantasies do, instead they tend to use more comedic archetypes for every character. This is a game where women are as likely to be “old hags” or “dumb blondes” or “religious fanatic” as the men are bound to be “drunk bard” or “overconfident jerk” or “lazy slob”. It’s not trying to make a strong social commentary, which means it’s hard to read too much into the imagery or archetypes it uses.

I can’t judge how many players are offended. I feel the people who are offended quit early and silently, because it’s easier to find a game they like to support than it is to change a community. That means I can’t count them so there’s no data. Without data, my opinion as a man about whether women should be offended doesn’t carry much weight. (I also think that since GoW displays its art style front and center, people can figure out right away if they think it’s a “club for men who like fantasy art” or not. I think sensible people understand a “Gentleman’s Club” is never going to be a safe place for women, so there’s a lot of bad faith attached to attacking it directly instead of the systems that enable it.)

I do think this community is allowed to suppress dissenting opinions too forcefully, but our moderators can’t even deal with troll bots within 4 days so that’s a hopeless argument.

So, in the end, I see this thread going nowhere. It’s just going to make a lot of people mad.

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That’s just what happens when you try to look at her cobra.

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How do I subscribe to this newsletter?

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You should have been here for the hysteria that accompanied Apothecary’s beard. :joy:

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She sets unrealistic beardy standards up to this day…

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I’ll state up front that I’m a pansexual woman that has a degree in fine arts. So, I have zero issue with viewing women that are sexually attractive or with viewing naked women. Long story short, I’m not a prude that gets the vapors when it comes to the topic of scantily clad, buxom women in games.

So, in general, I don’t have a problem with women in GoW art. Yes, it’s pretty obvious that the majority of female troops skew towards the typical fantasy sexy female ideal. However, I could pull up plenty of examples of female troops that don’t fit the stereotype because of body type or clothing style. So, I feel that the game devs do try to mix it up and not just stick to “what sells well” when it comes to female representation. Could they do better with the ratio of stereotypes to diverse women? Sure.

Frankly, they fall short the hardest when it comes to showing characters with diverse skin tones. I’d actually love for them to add some racial diversity to the art. I think my black avatar sticks out like a sore thumb in the current world of Krystara. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Id be happy if just more of the characters were actually useful, no matter what they look like :smiley:

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I pity the fool that gets a rapey vibe when looking at a card game. I think television shows such as TWD give folks a false sense of security. When the Zombie apocalypse happens, even if they are slow movers and not super quick, the fittest will survive the longest. Bashing Elveses is thirsty work.

Yes, Queen Grapplepots can survive if they are talented enough, or are assigned the role of quartermaster, but they will be the exception, not the rule.

Agreed. Princess Elspeth, tear down your walls. For the Horde

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The Devs:

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I rather prefer to look at some muscles and curves in interesting armors/dresses than look at troops that is hidden inside a nuns dress.

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