Game designer David Jaffe has been in the news quite a bit this week. His newest game, Twisted Metal is set to launch in a few days and his recently announced impending departure from studio Eat Sleep Play made a bit of a splash.
Unfortunately, while promoting Twisted Metal in an interview with GameTrailers, Jaffe's comments about the multiplayer co-op aspect of the game made another kind of splash entirely, as he suggested male players use their game performance to earn oral sex.
From 4:15 - 4:25, in the video below, Jaffe opines: "I tell you why, Twisted Metal, February 14 -- Valentine's Day -- it's a great, great romantic gift, if you have a lady friend and she really wants to know the best game ever, and she will give you a f**king blowjob, if you play this game. If you let her win Twisted Metal split screen, she will suck your d**k."
Here's the interview in question:
As one can perhaps imagine, several gamers took exception with this particular endorsement of Twisted Metal's co-op mode. In a lengthy series of Twitter posts and responses, edited together here for cohesion but without changed content, Jaffe addressed some critical responses directly:
Uhm, on the whole GT BJ thing, if I may: I like vulgar but the way that was edited came off more vulgar than even I like. There actually was some context to that conversation as I recall but the edit only showed the last part of a bigger discussion. Granted, the overall discussion was still intentionally juvenile and over the top but w/that as context- especially given the entire REST of the GT piece had NO indication the interview was gonna go vulgar, at least I think you'd see more where it was coming from.
Again, as I said earlier: it WAS meant to be stupid and childish but it was edited so as to cut off the lead off where we are talking about Valentine's Day and sex and stuff and then we transition to the BJ part. Again, nothing suave about it but it makes more sense if UC whole bit. That said:I see NOTHING misogynistic about what I said. Crude and vulgar? You bet! And unintentionally so when out of context. BUT what is misogynistic about what I said? That's just crazy! Never said 'buy this product and A girl will suck your dick'. I said 'YOUR GIRLFRIEND' would...and in context of the conversation, I would have just as easily said to a woman 'buy this product and your man will please you orally'. Again, vulgar and dumb? Sure. Nothing sexist about it tho.
No1 died sure, but I personally find it hurtful to be called a misogynist. I have 2 daughters and I'm a big fan of women. Many of my very best friends are women and I respect women. The idea that being crude and vulgar=misogynistic to some folks bugs the fuck outta me (but also indicates they are probably super pussy whipped PC types who God know I dunno why I give a shit about their judgement of me anyway)...so yeah, I really should not be upset :). Problem solved! :)
The part that Jaffe seems to misunderstand is that someone doesn't need to be waxing a handlebar moustache and tying young ladies to railroad tracks to make a sexist or misogynist statement. Most trouble doesn't actually come from villains and it doesn't come from people who actively stand around shouting, "I hate women." It comes from thoughtlessness.
By framing his statement as "let her win and she'll give you a blowjob," Jaffe's said a few things he may or may not have meant to. The first is that only straight men could possibly develop an independent interest in playing his game. The second is that the best way for a man to get what he wants is to come up with some underhanded trickery to apply. The last is that a girl or woman couldn't actually win a co-op match on her own.
Crude vulgarity that puts men in the position of manipulating women for sexual gain is misogyny. And perhaps he could indeed have said to the ladies that letting their male partners win would guarantee them sex -- but he didn't. And really, is any of this the best way to sell an action-packed automotive combat game? Perhaps Jaffe should just call this game an orgy of destruction... and leave any other kind of orgy out of it.