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Viva Piñata Apparently 'For Girls'

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the do-i-look-anything-like-a-girl-to-you-bill dept.

XBox (Games) 145

An anonymous reader writes "Bill Gates has demonstrated his unique public speaking skillset again, this time by further ostracizing gamers who grew to love one of the best Xbox 360 titles of last year - Viva Piñata. Comments made by Mr. Gates during an interview on the Charlie Rose show include the choice comment 'We have a thing called Viva Piñata that's for young girls, where you're tending a garden and these animals come along...'. His comment are carried by Eurogamer, who also provide a link to the YouTube video of the interview. For gamers who really appreciated this under-marketed and lovably quirky title, this is just another low blow."

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145 comments

FIST SPORT! (-1, Troll)

ringbarer (545020) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906568)

Ask Slashdot - What should my new fetish be?

ringbarer asks: I have recently become bored with pornography. Very rarely do I find myself masturbating to Goatse or Tubgirl or any of that wholesome intarweb entertainment.

Ideally, I would like to try jacking off to new material. Could the Slashboteers point me in the direction of some good shit?

I would prefer to watch video footage of genuine mentally disabled people fucking.

Hey Microsoft! (3, Interesting)

Zonk (12082) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906586)

Look ... Microsoft is good at a number of things. Your hardware is great. You make terrific peripherals. You made wise decisions in getting the Bungie and Epic guys to do their thing exclusively for your console. I would point out, though, that your stated goal for the 360 was to reach out to both non-gamers, and gamers that traditionally didn't play titles on the Xbox. This kind of crap, right here, with Gates calling Viva Piñata a 'little girls' game? It's what is making sure that you're not expanding the market. I really like my 360, but Sony and Nintendo are going to eat your lunch if you don't get with the program. Remember that Psychonauts thing you strung along and then dumped at the finish line? Games like that and Viva Piñata would go a long way towards getting to those 'Moms' you were talking about back in 2005. My name is Michael Zenke, and I'm a proud Dragonache owner. And, apparently, somewhat outside the 'intended audience' for a really, really great game.

Minor nit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906682)

Your hardware is great. You make terrific peripherals.

No they don't. They *brand* terrific peripherals.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (1)

rwven (663186) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906828)

I think the vast majority of people playing V.P. are guys (Myself included). It definitely appeals to girls more than MOST games but that probably is just used as more of an excuse for husbands to spend money on the game..."Honey, but you can play the game too!"

V.P. is a sims-esque, highly addictive game. Once you get over the kiddified intro movie/K-5 tutorial section and re-convince yourself that you're still manly/not too old to play the game...it's really quite fun.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (1)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906850)

This is one of the biggest problems with the games industry expanding beyond it's current core demographic of 18-34 males. Pretty much anything that does not feature gritty blood and guts is immediately labeled as kiddy or for girls (see the Sims, Animal Crossing, Psychonauts, hell even Wind Waker has been labeled as kiddy despite being part of one of the best franchises out there). It's a perception that extends beyond gamers into the outside world's perception of the medium and is reflected in Gates' comments here. Imagine what the movie industry would be like if Hollywood only made blockbuster action flicks. As long as people continue to label anything that strays away from the formula negatively, then publishers will continue to shy away from taking chances with something different.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (4, Funny)

Who235 (959706) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907016)

Imagine what the movie industry would be like if Hollywood only made blockbuster action flicks.
Umm. . .

Re:Hey Microsoft! (1)

MojoRilla (591502) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907860)

Imagine what the movie industry would be like if Hollywood only made blockbuster action flicks.
Umm. . .
Wait a second here. My wife just made me see Dreamgirls [imdb.com] . I had to watch 48 Hrs. [imdb.com] for a week just to get Eddie Murphy singing in a musical out of my head.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907876)

Ice Princess
The Princess Diaries
The Princess Diaries 2

Those are the obvious ones, but there were some others that Hollywood at least made, but had little confidence in so slipped them out direct to video with little fanfare, such as Barbie as the Princess and the Pauper.

The shining hidden gem though is unquestionably My Little Pony: The Princess Promenade. Don't believe me? Just check out the reviews at IMDB.

Just do a title search on "princess" and you'll find a virtual treasure trove of little dramatic jewels, such as the double winner of a Burbank International Children's Film Festival award, The Ruby Princess Runs Away.

All completely devoid of "action"; or intelligence.

Because girls are dumb and like that goofy shit.

KFG

Re:Hey Microsoft! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17907278)

Whoa, whoa, whoa. Animal Crossing may have looked kiddy, but it's really a very difficult and adult game representing the struggle of the common class against the entrenched mercantile-industrial complex and ineffective government leadership. Everything you do is part of the struggle against the oppressor, from the leaving of revolutionary literature on the town message board, to establishing a strong underground community amongst the populace and trying to instigate open revolt against Tom Nook's shadow regime.

It's just really hard...I can get my fellow town members to gather near Nookington's carrying axes and wearing my "Down With Nook" shirts, but I can't get them to actually torch the place yet.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (1)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907478)

That's my point. Viva Pinata is the same way. It's an incredibly deep game. But how many people overlook these games simply because they have a cartoony appearance to them? I know the commenter above was joking about the movie industry just making action flicks, but it's really a different scenario. Take pretty much any Pixar movie for example. When Cars came out millions of people went to see it. They didn't car that it was a cartoon, they knew it would be a good movie. That just doesn't happen with video games. People see a game with cell shaded graphics and say "oh that must be a game for kids". They don't even give them a chance.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (3, Funny)

secolactico (519805) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907714)

Boy, are you missing big time... Nook and Tortimer are just puppets. The man behind the curtain is Mr. Resetti.

Re:Hey Microsoft! (1)

maddskillz (207500) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907374)

Imagine what the movie industry would be like if Hollywood only made blockbuster action flicks

What a nasty man (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906588)

What's next, will he say MS Paint is a drawing program for 'children', insulting its wide and varied adult userbase?

Re:What a nasty man (2, Funny)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906800)

You mean MS Paint is for adults?! OMG! No wonder Little Johnny became a graffiti artist!

Re:What a nasty man (2, Funny)

muftak (636261) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907568)

Next he will say Visual Basic is a programming language for little girls.

Re:What a nasty man (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17909218)

It isn't?

Not to defend El Gates... (3, Insightful)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906620)

...but did anyone stop to think for a second maybe that was their original intention was to market the game towards girls?

Hell, my fiance LOVES playing Dead or Alive Xtreme 2, hardly the target demographic for that game.

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906678)

Exactly. Next thing you know, some childish gamer will get up in arms about how somebody mentioned that Pokemon was for kids. How dare they!

I mean Christ, the game's got purple ponies and shit prancing about. So some grown men like it. That doesn't mean it's not a little girls' game.

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906742)

Same goes for Katamari Damacy and We Heart Katamari...'cept for the purple ponies part...though I wouldn't be shocked if that were hidden in there somewhere...

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

darkrowan (976992) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908294)

Maybe he's thinking of the Zambug? Ponockys are yellow, unless you feed them bread.

/Dragonache Master, Flutterscotch Master (all species), Chewnicorn lover, full 1000 gamerscore earned

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

szembek (948327) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908588)

This is exactly what I think also. They made a game for little girls, and a bunch of dorks on slashdot like it so they get mad, and mod you down for calling them little girls.

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

Zonk (12082) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906840)

Of course it was marketed for girls. Good lord, the packaging alone is enough to send a diabetic into coma. The point is more that he and the rest of the company completely fumbled advertising this to ... everyone else. While I'm sure young women *can* enjoy it, this is a deep strategy title that can be enjoyed by everyone, and it's darn cute to boot. I am far from the only person to think so [1up.com] , and I think it's a disservice to the game to pigeonhole it the way Gates has here.

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908178)

Marketing == Pigeonholing.

Genre == Fancy Marketing word for Pigeonholed by Marketing.

Is it a disservice to the "product"? If it's of any quality always, but that's what you get in a world where "product" has become a synonym for "thing" and "buy" a synonym for "acquire".

In point of fact what you are really feeling itchy about is not the treatement of the product, but the treatment of yourself. Being pigeonholed as a little girl for liking the game.

And you should.

But they have no thought process for dealing with you as an individual. All they know are markets. Let me bring you to see Number 2. He explains it all much better than I can.

KFG

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907256)

...but did anyone stop to think for a second maybe that was their original intention was to market the game towards girls?

Then why was it rated E for Everyone?

They could have pushed for eC (Early Childhood).

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907390)

It is rated E for everyone because the controls and conepts are a bit advanced for a child under the age of 6...

http://www.esrb.org/ratings/ratings_guide.jsp [esrb.org]

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (2, Funny)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907454)

Apparently, the proper spelling of "concepts" is too advanced for me despite the fact that I am 22.

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907928)

And you missed the critical joke: the rating system doesn't include a system for rating games as unsuitable for adults. At least the retired K-A rating (Kids to Adults) could be read as stopping at adulthood.

Even "Early Childhood" is for age 3 and older, though is the only one besides T for Teens that on its face would suggest a non-adult age group.

(I guess I need to cite my sources [wikipedia.org] to avoid people citing them in rebuttal.)

Re:Not to defend El Gates... (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908048)

And you missed the critical joke: the rating system doesn't include a system for rating games as unsuitable for adults.
Unsuitable for adults, or boring for adults?

There is a difference.

DoA X2 is a very girly game. (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907858)

Hell, my fiance LOVES playing Dead or Alive Xtreme 2, hardly the target demographic for that game.

Yeah, but what is the game essentially? It's running around shopping for clothes, jewelry, and make-up for girls with some volleyball and fan service tossed in and next to no macho aggression. Oh sure, there's girls in bikinis, but modern culture has inured women to seeing scantily clad women in ads for women -- just open up a Cosmo sometime. There's far more to attract women to the game than men once you scratch the surface.

Re:DoA X2 is a very girly game. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908094)

Never said women couldn't enjoy it just as much as men, I said my fiance didn't fit the target demographic.

Download the japanese TV trailer on xbox live, and then come back here and tell me if you think the game is MARKETED towards males or females.

So What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906630)

Does it bother you that much that a GIRL might enjoy the same game as you? Pr0n is wasted on some of you.

Don't put too much into it. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906634)

the real problem here (5, Insightful)

poor_boi (548340) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906640)

The real problem here is not Gates' comment, but the public perception that a game which is targeted at girls somehow insults the game. Come on. This is 2007. Girls' games can be fun too.

Re:the real problem here (4, Insightful)

Klowner (145731) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906756)

Maybe if the games marketed towards girls weren't so insultingly bad, then this wouldn't be quite so insulting, but that isn't the case.

Who'd have thought Bill Gates could emasculate a bunch of male gamers so easily? ;)

Re:the real problem here (1)

theelectron (973857) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907460)

You sir, have given one of the most intelligent responses I have seen for this thread.

Re:the real problem here (2, Insightful)

Khuffie (818093) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907644)

Actually, the real problem here is not Gates' comment, but the fact that it was Gates who said it. If it was Jobs, Miyamoto, Will Wright, etc, we'd be hearing about how great they are for creating games that target the female demographic.

Re:the real problem here (3, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907844)

You obviously are -not- in touch with the Viva Pinata community, then. It wouldn't matter if God said it was a girl game, he'd get nothing but flames back.

This is a cutesy, kiddie-looking game that has a very loyal following among non-kids, myself included. It's an amazing game. Every time someone calls it a 'kiddie game' or a 'girl game', it is a chance for everyone who hasn't played it to write is off as 'childish'. Fans of anything are alike in 1 way: They want everyone else to try the thing they love so much.

So it's not that it's a personal insult, but rather that it's damaging to the thing we love.

Nothing can take away the game as it is, of course, so damage to the game's image doesn't mean much yet. But when it comes time to create VP2 or another game along the same lines, any damage to the original game matters a lot.

Re:the real problem here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17908366)

So... you're saying it's some sort of inferiority complex or guilt complex? Maybe you guys should all take your game selections a little less personally.

Re:the real problem here (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908484)

So, rather than receiving praise for creating a game that fills so many roles, and appeals to so many different types of gamers......

Re:the real problem here (3, Insightful)

Khuffie (818093) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908800)

You obviously are *not* in touch with reality.

From Microsoft's standpoint, they were creating a game that would appeal to girls (something that say, Gears of War doesn't). Note that that statement does *not* imply that girls can't play and enjoy Gears of War, or that men can't play and enjoy Viva Pinata. They talked about that game that way when they were developing it, their goal was to create a franchise for kids, along with a children's cartoon show, so get that stick out of your bum and realize the reason this game is in existence, and is so amazing, is because of this desire to create something that appeals to people who don't normally find something like Gears of War appealing. (ala Nintendogs, Brain Age, etc).

Re:the real problem here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17909574)

Seems like the real issue here is that XBox owners are largely adolescent and slightly-post-adolescent males who care overly much about their "image".

This was extremely evident in the anti-Gamecube days, where the bright colours in a Mario game that might appeal to children caused it to be dismissed as a "child's game", and thus not worthy of the attention of "grown men" who would rather play "real games".

Now the shoe is firmly on the other foot, you've discovered that cutesy visuals don't necessarily make for a bad game, and when someone says they intended the game to appeal to young girls, you all froth at the mouth and have an apoplexy. How DARE they attack your foolish "image"?

Enjoy your crow, pinata lovers! I'm going to go play Animal Crossing and laugh once again at your self delusions. Aha ha ha!

Re:the real problem here (1)

zumbojo (615389) | more than 7 years ago | (#17910678)

IIRC, Miyamoto has said the same thing about Nintendogs. Where's the /. article lambasting him?

Slashdot + any mention of Bill Gates = "RABBLE RABBLE RABBLE"

Re:the real problem here (1)

SydShamino (547793) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907980)

The problem is, the last game I saw that was designed and marketed for "little girls" was Barbie Horse Adventure [youtube.com] . The implication these two games share a target market insults Viva Piñata.

Re:the real problem here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17910478)

Girls' games can be fun too. ... said "poor_boi" as his man withdrew from his tucchus.

Low Blow? What? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906646)

Why is it such a low blow? There's no possible way that you could like something that was also made for girls? Are you that insecure that you can only like things that are made for men?

I fail to see the insult Mr. Gates made.

Re:Low Blow? What? (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906938)

There's no possible way that you could like something that was also made for girls? Are you that insecure that you can only like things that are made for men?

Well, I for one will have nothing to do with anything of the kind. Gaming is all about guns and robots and tanks and violence and stuff, that's proper, hardcore grown-up gaming for manly men.

(Now, if you'll excuse me for a moment I just need to check on the latest turnip prices...)

What's wrong with that? (5, Insightful)

WombatDeath (681651) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906688)

Who gives a damn what something is 'for'? So bingo is for geriatrics and Harry Potter's for kids; doesn't stop me enjoying either of them.

If you enjoyed Viva Piñata before Gates opened his mouth you have no reason to enjoy it any less afterwards. If you let marketing demographics dictate how you spend your leisure time you deserve to be miserable.

Re:What's wrong with that? (3, Funny)

grammar fascist (239789) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906770)

If you enjoyed Viva Piñata before Gates opened his mouth you have no reason to enjoy it any less afterwards.
No, but it might mean you're gay. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Re:What's wrong with that? (0, Offtopic)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907238)

No, but it might mean you're gay. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

There isn't anything wrong with it. (There is, of course, something wrong with liking bingo in between the ages of 8 and 65.)

*please mod informative, please mod informative*

Re:What's wrong with that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17907570)

Holy overlooked pop culture reference [wikipedia.org] , Batman!

Re:What's wrong with that? (-1, Offtopic)

alta (1263) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907716)

Sure there is, whether you think God made you that way, or evolution made you that way... it's obviously wrong. The biology just doesn't work out. If we put all the gay males on one planet, and all the gay females on another, we'd soon have 2 uninhabited planets.

Re:What's wrong with that? (2, Funny)

tooba (710518) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907892)

What's your point? If you put all the straight males on one planet and all the straight females on another planet you'd still be left with 2 uninhabited planets. The only difference is that your scenario has more techno music and girl on girl action.

Re:What's wrong with that? (1)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 7 years ago | (#17910296)

I think you both have VERY valid points. I think the GP poster, however, is pointing out that homosexuality by its own merit and/or purpose, cannot be a result of nature or natural selection (evolution). [shrugs] But you do what you want on your planet, and I'll do what I want on mine....

Re:What's wrong with that? (1)

rhombic (140326) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908224)

Sure there is, whether you think God made you that way, or evolution made you that way... it's obviously wrong.
That has to be one of the most idiotic things I've ever read. Having non-breeding individuals around can definitely be an evolutionary advantage to a population. There are many phenotypes that aren't of evolutionary benefit to a given individual, but increase the fitness of a population of related individuals. One of the most obvious in humans is menopause. Losing the ability to produce more offspring serves absolutely no advantage to a given female, but having females survive to help the next generation rather than die in late birthing is a big advantage to a given population. There are too many other examples to list here. Evolution works on populations, not individuals, and non-breeding individuals can be a very important component to a population, especially under conditions of crowding & lack of resources (as humans in most of the world find themselves today).

If we put all the gay males on one planet, and all the gay females on another, we'd soon have 2 uninhabited planets.
Um, yeah. And if we put all the hetero males on one planet and all of the hetero females on another, we'd soon have two uninhabited planets, as well. Pure genius.

Re:What's wrong with that? (1)

The One and Only (691315) | more than 7 years ago | (#17910330)

Evolution works on populations, but it favors the individual gene, not the population. If you have the most successful offspring, you win evolution, even if by doing so you do really shitty things to the rest of the population. "Having females survive to help the next generation rather than die in late birthing is a big advantage to a given population"? Having females survive to help THEIR CHILDREN is a big advantage to THE PROPAGATION OF THEIR INDIVIDUAL GENES. Non-breeding individuals lose at evolution, unless they help their siblings to successfully reproduce. If you had stopped to think about how natural selection works you would realize this.

Re:What's wrong with that? (1)

alta (1263) | more than 7 years ago | (#17911102)

Um, yeah. And if we put all the hetero males on one planet and all of the hetero females on another, we'd soon have two uninhabited planets, as well. Pure genius.
You miss the point. Homosexuals can not breed amongst themselves. Hetero's can. And no, the sperm bank option is not an argument when discussing nature's way.

I feel my excelent Karma slipping away, but I have plenty to spare :)

Re:What's wrong with that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17906844)

Couldn't have said it better myself. If you're offended because someone told you that the game you like wasn't intended for you, then you have self-esteem issues you need to work out.

Personally, I thought Viva Pinata was another flavor of digital crack. I got it from Gamefly because there wasn't anything else that caught my eye at the time, and spent a solid 2-3 weeks of gaming time into it (it's very detail oriented which is why I think I liked it). This is coming from a 23 year old guy who traditionally plays only games where I get to shoot at people and verbally abuse 12 year-olds over Live.

Re:What's wrong with that? (1)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906998)

The problem is that while there are many people who will enjoy it regardless, myself included, there are a great many morons out there with cash to spend that will shy away from games like this as long as there is a stigma attached to them. Until the industry can move beyond retarded stereotypes then those morons will have tremendous influence over the decisions publishers make in terms of what games they chose to bankroll. As a result, don't expect to see anything like a Viva Pinata 2 any time soon.

Re:What's wrong with that? (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907004)

You're giving Microsoft too much credit for understanding what their market "wants". Sure, Office and Windows are pretty user friendly, as long as you don't need to move off the beaten path. But anywhere else? It's like they just stagger around doing things and when something takes off, they don't really understand why.

You know that this comment is an outgrowth of some marketing discussion where they're trying to figure out why the game did so well, and they're completely missing the lesson about "quality" and "originality" and writing the higher-than-expected sales off on the elusive girl-gamer market that makes titles like "The Sims" so popular.

Re:What's wrong with that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17907358)

Yeah, seriously. Would the Slashdot staff will be shocked to learn that "Pokemon", "Sailor Moon", and "Knight Rider" were all intended as childrens' entertainment?

There's nothing wrong with enjoying these things. But they shouldn't feel insulted when Gates states the obvious.

It's about maturity. (1)

HoneyBunchesOfGoats (619017) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907736)

The quote is still demeaning to people who liked the game. Not because it stereotypes them as female (which doesn't matter - at least not to me), but because of the maturity level in which Gates groups such people. If it was geared toward "women" or "females", whatever; but "girl" has connotations of being for a less mature group with unrefined tastes (think "Barbie Horse Adventures"). Part of being a mature, discerning gamer is appreciating games that fall outside the boundaries of the typical "things that explode" genre. But yet if I am discerning and mature, and enjoy playing Viva Piñata, Gates thinks I'm immature. He still doesn't get it.

Re:It's about maturity. (1)

ElleyKitten (715519) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909230)

If it was geared toward "women" or "females", whatever; but "girl" has connotations of being for a less mature group with unrefined tastes (think "Barbie Horse Adventures").
At 25 I am still called a "girl", yet I don't freak out and tell everyone that I'm a mature adult who hates Barbie Horse Adventures. Having your games labeled girl games can't be that offensive.

Re:What's wrong with that? (0, Flamebait)

j00r0m4nc3r (959816) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908390)

You like Bingo??? HAHAHAHAHA. You LOSER! I'm in the Parcheesi Mafia and my crew would DESTROY you and your little Bingo dweebs ANY TIME, ANY DAY. You and your old-man stink homies will be crying, "B-I-N-G-Oh my god they've got fucking Yahtzee dice! Run!" Yeah, and you'd BETTER run or else we'll have to go Hungry Hungry Hippos on your weak asses. DO. NOT. FUCK. WITH. PARCHEESI. MAFIA. period. Especially on the third thursday of every month when we have our hardcore gangster playdates with the Light Brights. BOOYAH! We get ALL the fly hunnies, yo.

Zonk? Girl? (5, Funny)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906722)

from the do-i-look-anything-like-a-girl-to-you-bill dept.

Manboobs.

Bill's no gamer! (2, Insightful)

hypervinetest45 (795152) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906752)

Bill Gates is no gamer. Hell, I'm impressed Bill even knew about Viva Pinata in the first place. If I was completely unfamiliar with the content of the game and spent about 10 seconds watching the game/show, I'd figure it was a 'My Little Pony' for modern times, too.

For once Bill is RIGHT! (1)

xTMFWahoo (470364) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906780)

This game does seem to be marketed to young girls. I don't see a problem with this. I think the submitters comment that this is a "low blow" is ludicrous!

Low blow? (1)

mcvos (645701) | more than 7 years ago | (#17906908)

Why is this a low blow? Is there something fundamentally wrong with young girls or their games? Is there something wrong with me if a young girl happens to like the same TV show as I do?

Or is the problem that old men who like this game are now seen as old men who pretend to be young girls?

Re:Low blow? (1)

k_187 (61692) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908204)

I'd imagine that because the largest group of fans of the game are not young girls, they object to being called young girls.

Bill doesn't "get" something gamer-related? OMG! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17907000)

For those unfamiliar with Bill Gates, he's the 52-year-old rich guy that once celebrated Win95's gaming possibilities by inserting himself into a game of "Doom." [youtube.com] On the viewing area of the screen. Where "Doom" players know you only see your enemies.

The real culprit (2, Insightful)

EvilGoodGuy (811015) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907010)

I think the real culprit in this article is the anonymous person who managed to sneak this blatent anti-microsoft garbage onto slashdot.

The game was designed for little girls. If you feel ostrisized because you're a grown man playing a little girls game. Then there are two cases here:

1.) You should feel ostrisized anyways

2.) The game turned out a hell of a lot better than they thought it would.

Re:The real culprit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17908118)

I blame the public school system. Did you mean "ostracized" or "ostrich-ized?"

Ostrisized? (1)

barakn (641218) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909612)

Ostrisize, v. - to stretch to the height of an ostrich. Ostrisize, adj. - as tall as an ostrich. And thus ostriches join the pantheon of familiar objects used as describe the dimensions of unfamiliar objects, e.g. VW Beetles used as a unit of volume.

The problem (1, Insightful)

Conspiracy_Of_Doves (236787) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907142)

Corporate America needs to seriously redefine, or possibly even abandon, the whole concept of 'demographics'. The whole idea is fundamentally flawed. It assumes that certain types of games/tv shows/movies only appeal to certain age groups and genders. It is based solely on stereotypes. Not only is it insulting to the consumer and puts crap entertainments on the market, but it is also costing the corporations money, not only in the cost of the demographics 'research' but also in lost potential profits.

Re:The problem (1)

VWJedi (972839) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907774)

Corporate America needs to seriously redefine, or possibly even abandon, the whole concept of 'demographics'. The whole idea is fundamentally flawed.

So you propose they look at society as a whole and develop everything to be bland and acceptable to everyone? I really think that is what is "insulting to the consumer and puts crap entertainments on the market".

I think it's a perfectly reasonable approach to say, "This group of people is not buying games. Let's talk to them and figure out what kinds of games they would buy." If the company develops a game that fits a niche, that's good for the company and for the consumers. The challenges are

  • avoid developing a game that appeals only to the target audience
  • avoid marketing a game only to the target audience
  • avoid alienating gamers who enjoy the game in spite of not being part of the target audience.

Re:The problem (1)

Conspiracy_Of_Doves (236787) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908724)

So you propose they look at society as a whole and develop everything to be bland and acceptable to everyone?

Way to completely miss my point and put words in my mouth.

What I propose is that they make a wide variety of good, solid stories. You are never going to be able to make something that appeals to everyone, but my point is that which people the entertainment is going to appeal to is not defined by age and gender. It is defined by less obvious things like personality traits and subcultures which cross all age groups and both genders and is much more difficult to analyze.

Re:The problem (1)

VWJedi (972839) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909370)

Way to completely miss my point and put words in my mouth.

Sorry about that.

[W]hich people the entertainment is going to appeal to [...] is defined by less obvious things like personality traits and subcultures which cross all age groups and both genders and is much more difficult to analyze.

So how do you propose to analyze this information and use it? It seems to me that demographics, while far from perfect, is a useful tool to analyze (potential) customers. Until business can figure out how to cater to each person individually (in a cost-effective way), you have to divide "the market" into meaningful sub-groups to decide where to focus your resources.

Re:The problem (2, Insightful)

alta (1263) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907820)

Whatever, demographics are very useful.
It optimizes the purchasing of adspace for the company, keeping them from advertising a product where it is completely useful to do so.

When's the last time you saw a Viagra ads in a 'boys life' magazine.
ads for shoes out of Amputee monthly.
ads Omaha Steaks on a Vegan mag?
ads for Monster truck shows off of Oxygen/We.
Ads for tampons on Spike?

You have demographics to thank for that.

Sure, 15% of the people who watch Spike might use tampons, but the money is obviously better spent on Oxygen/We.

Demographics (1)

Per Abrahamsen (1397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907832)

Demographics is a useful scientific term, which does not need redefinition, and certainly not from "Corporate America".

The use of demographics in marketing certainly can use some refinement, and it is also being refined all the time. There is a tendency to overuse demographics because it is so easily measurable. In particular, the use of too rigid demographic boxes can make it difficult to recognize the market radical new products.

Re:The problem (1)

taustin (171655) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908088)

Demographics is a cold, hard science, based on a century or more of experience. That you like girly stuff is unfortunate - for you - but irrelevant to advertisers.

Re:The problem (1)

Katmando911 (1039906) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908212)

If you like this girly thing, (you're probably a girl and) perhaps you'll like these other girly things. That's how demographics is supposed to work.

Re:The problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17908214)

Go take a psychology course before opening your mouth smartass.

Believe it or not, and I know this will be hard for you, there actually are differences between women/men, black/white/asian, children/adults, sun/moon, water/air etc. I know, it seems totally weird but scientific facts are scientific facts.

Re:The problem (1)

abb3w (696381) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909278)

It is based solely on stereotypes.

Not quite; it's based on statistics. Of course, the short-hand models used by corporate executives oft omit error bars, nor is the model tested experimentally for validity. Corporate executives also don't usually understand the nature of statistical models — it's not a certain truth, but merely a better bet at it than alternatives — so demographics mainly gets interpreted through the executive's stereotypes. Thus, they assume that because a Thneed primarily appeals to the 25-40 year old male demographic, and that such a demographic is usually uncomfortable with pink, they should try to dye the Thneed blue... not realizing (until too late) that the demographic considered is mostly men sufficiently certain of their own masculinity to be comfortable in the kitchen, who primarily use their Thneed to make soup zestier, and that the blue dye tastes terrible.

Re:The problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17911044)

This is possibly the dumbest statement I've ever seen written down.

Targetted products isn't costing anyone money. Its far, far more effective than untargetted and anyone with half a brain knows that. Its based on statistics, not stereotypes.

Low blow for slashdot (1)

krelian (525362) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907148)

Looks like submitters are using digg to filter stories for /. (Hint: "YouTube" video link actually links to digg...)

Target your demographic (2, Funny)

vga_init (589198) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907178)

We have this product for adolescent males called Windows Vista.--Bill Gates

You heard it here first.

Re:Target your demographic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17908188)

I thought it was targetted to relatively rich people who didn't know any better than to stick with XP (e.g., PHBs).

Re:Target your demographic (1)

SnowNinja (1051628) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909482)

We have this product for adolescent males called Windows Vista.--Bill Gates

You heard it here first.

Wait.. you mean it loads porn faster?

Re:Target your demographic (1)

vga_init (589198) | more than 7 years ago | (#17910036)

Wait.. you mean it loads porn faster?

Hell yes.

Not to beat a dead horse.. but... (2, Interesting)

mcnut (712202) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907236)

Yes, in our narrow minded world it is a "girl game", just like Katamari Damacy and Sims were labeled "Girl Games" because they were fun and quirky and for some reason drew in the female demographic. I've played all of these titles and thought, "wow, a game thats easy to pick up, but challenging to master, and keeps my interest! I like this, and I bet my girlfriend will too!"

How Offensive Indeed. (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907300)

How offensive that they would develop a game with a specific demographic in mind and actually state that fact in public. Someone should be ashamed of themselves.

This is why you all never get laid. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17907580)

"Bill Gates said my game is for GIRLS! EWWWWWW! YUCKY! I AM OFFENDED!"

Seriously, you people are pathetic.

I mean, first and foremost - we're talking about Bill Gates. This is the man who signed off on the failed abortion known as Microsoft Bob. Do you really care what his opinion on things is?

Second, do I need to reinterate the, "EWWW! YUCKY!" part? Christ. This is news?

We needed Gates to tell us this? (2, Interesting)

alta (1263) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907594)

I have a 4 year old. The first time we saw a commercial for that game, I asked him if he thought that looks like a good game. He said, "Dad, that game's for girls."

I have no idea the quality of the game, but I wouldn't rip gates a new one for thinking it's a girl game.

Re:We needed Gates to tell us this? (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907886)

Your 4 year old's company didn't publish the game on its flagship console. We all forgive your son for not knowing the difference.

Gates is a completely different matter.

its called play (1)

Floritard (1058660) | more than 7 years ago | (#17907768)

I tried to get a guy i know to play Donkey Kongo once. i showed him how it worked and he freaked out when i tried to get him to play it. might as well have been trying to get him to wear a care bears t-shirt to a biker rally. for some reason it really offended his sense of masculinity. the face he made was almost involuntary. forget that it was a fun game. shit i'll play barbie's dream mansion if the gameplay is solid. blood and guts or fuzzy bunny rabbits, it's all fun and games anyway.

This was the least offensive part (1)

Cyrano de Maniac (60961) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908046)

I saw this episode of the Charlie Rose Show as it was aired. While I did notice the comment that is the subject of this article, there was much more disturbing content in the episode.

Not that Charlie Rose is known as a hard-hitting interviewer, but the soft ball questions he pitched up to Mr. Gates were disappointing, if not somewhat sickening. Mr. Rose let Gates gloss over EU and other anticompetitive issues, the rising pressures open source presents to Microsoft, and much much more.

Frankly I expected a lot more, but in the end the entire episode came off as a Microsoft PR segment.

damnit (2, Funny)

nEoN nOoDlE (27594) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908080)

Shit, I just got a Badgesickle to live in my garden and I find out the damn game is for girls! I'm gonna go play some Vegas to feel manly again.

This is an outrage! (1)

ScotchForBreakfast (1060672) | more than 7 years ago | (#17908144)

further ostracizing gamers

Who cares? As long as their system has good games I'll keep buying them. It doesn't matter to me one way or another who Gates thinks plays various games. Sometimes I think the gaming community is just looking to be offended if someone isn't busy hugging them.

Ño, the cat does ñot "got my toñgue (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909518)

> For gamers who really appreciated this under-marketed and lovably
> quirky title, this is just another low blow.

Truly it's a slap in the face to the minimaxers who are doing things like getting up to 7 PVPS (piñata visits per second), and slogging through hundreds of hours of mind numbing repetitive tedium to gain enough faction to get piñatas of opposing species to mate.

Oh, sure, anyone can use the secret code to enable the gory fragging options, but to enable it using purely legal [b]and intended[/b] in-game mechanics is a whole 'nother ballgame of superior ability! Kneel! Kneel before Zod!

This is like being called gay (1)

Punto (100573) | more than 7 years ago | (#17909692)

Unless you think there's something wrong with being a 'young girl', how is this an insult? So they made it thinking about girls, and then a bunch of weird old guys liked it. It's not like they're calling you a nazi or something like that.. It might be inaccurate, but it's not really offensive.

I have a bunch of DS games that show a pink screen right after you load them, and I'm not ashamed by it! (I wouldn't be caught dead with the pink DS tho, I have my limits)

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