God of War dev 'pulled back' from violence against women

Sony Santa Monica dev talks violence in upcoming God of War: Ascension, says there has been an "issue" with violence directed at women in past games.

Kratos will fight a varied host of beasts and humanoids in upcoming action game God of War: Ascension, but don't expect the game to place much focus on violence against women. Speaking to IGN, Sony Santa Monica game design manager David Hewitt elaborated on the line the team draws with regards to violence.

Violence against women will not be a focus of God of War: Ascension.

"There are some things we’ve pulled back from. I think where this has been an issue is with violence against women," he said. "The team’s pulled back from some of that and assessed that a little more carefully. There are certain things that carry a different kind of resonance that we don’t want to get into. This isn’t about statement-making in that regard. It’s about fleshing out this character."

Speaking more generally about the way in which Sony Santa Monica goes about implementing violence in God of War: Ascension, Hewitt explained that Kratos' bloody fury is not designed to feel gratuitous.

"He’s seeking revenge and he’s after his ultimate objective and he will tear through enemies--rip them in half--as quickly as he can," Hewitt said. "But there’s not a lot of flourishes, there’s not any kind of enjoying the moment. There’s nothing about this that he’s enjoying."

God of War: Ascension is a prequel to the original trilogy that will tell Kratos' origin story. The game's multiplayer mode will include persistent features as players develop their Troy or Spartan soldiers over time. Performance on the battlefield can yield blessings from the gods in the form of new perks, weapons, and abilities. There will also be a number of different combat roles for players, depending on the god they associate themselves with, be it Hades, Poseidon, Zeus, or Ares.

For more on God of War: Ascension, check out GameSpot's latest preview.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and is a big UCONN athletics fan.

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Discussion

0 comments
monster637
monster637

Im just glad i brought up Nariko and yuu peeps are talking about her, i freaking loved heavenly sword and was hoping for a Second , Miss nariko and kai, atleast Nariko is in playstation all stars coming out this holidays

Nikore
Nikore

"There’s nothing about this that he’s enjoying."

 

That about sums up how I felt when reading this article. I probably don't need to point out the irony, hypocrisy, and utter ridiculousness of Hewitt's statement, but I'm still baffled at his implication that the violence in the game is not enjoyable. If he had a better understanding of what his target audience has grown to expect from a GOW game, he would have just kept his mouth shut.

FemalePervert
FemalePervert

Heavenly Sword Nariko:

 

Female version of Kratos. Unscatthed, un-touched!

 

Kratos on the other hand is given the gender-specific discriminatory treatment (He's too rough with his enemies! It's violence against women!) yet Nariko(the female) is allowed to get away with all the murders done against men without a peep made about it.

 

How does that work, exactly? Why haven't men start complaining about titles like Heavenly Sword Nariko?

 

Whoever made these descions really didn't do their research and just listened to interest groups. People who don't even PLAY God of War but look at the title as something to complain about. All I can see is the developer becoming afraid of getting sued by some feminist group over their game.

 

It's not like Kratos stands around specifically torturing all the female characters and rapes them. Some of the females are actually a-holes in their own nature.

 

Why is Heavenly Sword Nariko allowed to get away with violence, and Kratos is not?

 

The entire article is based on GENDER-SPECIFIC-DISCRIMINATION! Because some tools out there dislike Krato's character being the God.Of.War. so they must dislike greek mythology in it's entirety too!

 

It's Kratos character, he's rough with everybody(all ranges, both male, female, and the monsters) and he's brutality.  God of War is not a game that single-handedly targets female characters as the only enemies in the entire game because there's multiple enemies.

 

As a Female Gamer i'm quiet disgusted with the amount of idiotic female "interest grops" out there putting their selfishness first before the freedom of expression in video-games.

 

Now video-games aren't even allowed to express a character like Kratos anymore? I can read novels and watch movies that contain more violence in them then the God of War franchises. If Kratos is rough brutality, so be it!

 

This character has no representation on the reality of real-life or connected to some real-life person because Kratos, is a non-existant video-game character.The game is highly unrealistic and fantasy to began with with the amount of blood-gushing like fountains too.

 

I'm really mad at you, North-America. Your loosing your creativity and freedom of expression over this ridicolous interest-groups and their "political-agenda" crap in the video-games.This is why i've moved to Korean Games and couldn't be happier since.

 

18+ games with no B.S. political restrictions like North-American ones. Plus their extremely fun and koreans know how to make their characters alluring (No ugly, low-rendered granny polygons here).

 

Gamers you need to start writing back to your developers or your gonna see more games being restricted and freedom of expression snatched from underneath your eyeballs.

 

From the article it sounds like these groups been quietly pressuring the developers for some time now.

GAME-QUEST-EX
GAME-QUEST-EX

The devs probably decided that maybe such a mixed theme, might offend some female game fans, who might complain about how Kratos gets to kill women off in one instant, and then gets to have sex with other women in another.

 

Perhaps the devs decided not to head in that direction anymore & cut that "connection" between the sex and violence (at least when it involves human women), even with the game's M-Rating.

Ecthelion22
Ecthelion22

And i find it funny that they say no violence but nothing about nudity :P

 

Ecthelion22
Ecthelion22

hahaha violence against women XDD?? Kratos doesnt discriminate !! Every1 dies!

jockie_chan
jockie_chan

Lol seriously... in a game like god of war, - M rated, blood, sex, endless killing. you have to scale back on "violence against women", what about violence against men? ffs, double standard much?  

forget that what about ****ing murder?  .....

 

Dubbya44
Dubbya44

i've got money that says all you whiners out there wouldn't have noticed a damned thing if something hadn't been said. "scale back" doesn't not mean "none-what-so-ever" which seems to be the hyperbolic understanding of the term, so don't worry kids, you can keep you're wife-beaters on. 

 

not to mention the fact that they didn't say a word about what they're scaling it back from, because yeah we need more rape in video games. /sarcasm

Glupie
Glupie

I bet the developer who called for the Scaling Back is some feminist chick.

L_B_123
L_B_123

So they can't kill women out of respect but can show them and their breasts at least 4 times in each game, great priorities, besides why does it matter, i don't feel because kratos rips women apart its a clever and good thing to go do in real life just as i don't with the men, it's more sexist to remove then as it shows they are too soft and weak charecters to be pulled apart and don't stand up to men, very strange

KillzoneSnake
KillzoneSnake

Women violence... huh? Kratos kills everything, men, women, children, beasts, gods. I just hope GOW games continue to have boobies :)

OHGFawx
OHGFawx

The story is about a man blinded by rage. He killed his family while blinded by his quest for power, he killed Athena while blinded by his quest for revenge, and he killed Zeus and Gaia for betraying him. He didn't care about anyone who got in his way. He sacrificed anyone that was necessary for him to progress, whether it be the Spartan soldier and ship captain in GoW, the priests in GoW2, and the Poseidon concubine in GoW3. He battled the Sisters of Fate in the same way he fought every male antagonist, he snapped Hera's neck because she kept following him and insulting him. He was actually planning to let her live but she persisted until she'd finally provoked him. Trying to make a case that the violence against women in this game is somehow sexist would be a step backwards for the feminist movement in my opinion. He has several female allies throughout the series and he doesn't kill women after bedding them. What about this is sexist other than the sex mini-games for experience? Women are not targeted for violence in this series, to say so is completely foolish.

DevilD2005
DevilD2005

im insulted, especially because of the grit nature of GOW and because females play a big part in greek mythology. To be honest, I never liked GOW but to cower on an issue is to give the issue power. To say, we are ging to tone it down, is to say that it was sexist and evil for kratos to fight female characters in the first place. Just because Kratos may be a coward, doesnt mean the developers should be especially when they had the gall to make these games as visceral and sexual in the first place.

therealsig
therealsig

Oh right, because ripping a male apart is humane, but ripping a female apart is pure EVIL. I see the equality. So, ripping apart transgenders is what? Frowned upon?

worlock77
worlock77

I don't care if the target has breasts or not, I just want Kratos in all his brutal, animalistic glory.

Jestersmiles
Jestersmiles

jaffe would be rolling in his grave right about now..if he was dead.....smh

Wedge55
Wedge55

"But there’s not a lot of flourishes, there’s not any kind of enjoying the moment. There’s nothing about this that he’s enjoying."

 

Oh good, for a moment there I was worried they might try to make the God of War games fun again.  That's a load off my mind.

DSkinMasque
DSkinMasque

Equality means equality not preferential treatment.  I have been killing guys forever inside videogames are women, kids and other people golden or something?  

Gamer_Geek726
Gamer_Geek726

Sexism is getting taken to a whole different level. 

The_Last_Ride
The_Last_Ride

So it's ok to slash, stab, shoot, smash, and kill guys the thousands? But it's a big deal when a woman (god forbid) is evil or even has to die?

Senor_Kami
Senor_Kami

Gaming is getting to such a stupid PC place right now.  They're killing sexy chicks from gaming and now women can't be enemies.  Soon women just won't be in anything but super serious "realistic" games because you're not allowed to do anything fun with them or the hate brigade will show up to wag their finger at you.

 

I can see the next big complaint being that women shouldn't be side kicks because it furthers male superiority.

otanikun
otanikun

I never saw the problem anyway, the women in God of War were either in the wrong place at the wrong time, absolutely could not defend themselves whatsoever, or deserved what was coming to them.

Spacerac
Spacerac

So no more leaving women to be crushed to death by giant gears? That made me cringe but at the same time... damn, Kratos is an equal opportunity brutalizer for sure.

MrStarkiller
MrStarkiller

 @Dubbya44 Dear boy, you do realize the softball females already get in this series, yes?  Goddesses don't bleed and die quick, mortal women are killed optionally in simple kills (like male civilians) and the 'worst' case among females was off-screen (along with one monster boss).

 

The male version was on-screen and glorified *as is proper*.  All female monsters enjoy glorious equality, so why not these others?  As for rape, I'm quite sure that if the GoW Spartans follow tradition, that is exactly what Kratos did to his wife (bridal kidnapping is one such definition for the term).  Maybe one day we'll have a go with that too, eh?

Glupie
Glupie

 @L_B_123 

 

Sad part is there females out there who wouldn't hesitate to rip male or female apart if given a chance in a fight. Believe me when I tell you, I've SEEN women like this. Their buck-wild and vicious and they love lurking in the clubs.

 

Literally female-kratos LOL. But Developers got it stuck in their heads apparently that fictional women in video-games are incapable of being violent themselves and must be treated as little mew mew kittens who fall apart at the slightest brush of a wind.

 

Now what would happen if a developer decided to make a female verison of kratos, and have her rip apart both females and males too?

 

Ironically it wouldn't be considered "violence" then

Glupie
Glupie

 @therealsig 

 

I bet they'll make greek-mythology characters who run around and mock Kratos now that he can't smack them anymore.

Hicks233
Hicks233

 @therealsig It requires a focus group. Some market testing, a bit of hand wringing then apathetic confusion.

thingta42
thingta42

 @DSkinMasque

 Violence on women from the mans hand has always been regarded as cowardly for 1000s of years. A man just does not hurt a woman ever. Theres no reason for it. Sure in battles that rule is out of the window. But woman are a thing of beauty and should be admired, not be slapped around like trash. No women = no human race. We need woman to reproduce. More men need to understand that and admire them more instead of takin them for granted.

Corrupted_Wolf
Corrupted_Wolf

 @DSkinMasque 

 

It's obviously referring to the aggression and sexual aggression towards non-combatant women in the game.

 

And yes, "kids" are golden in fantasy and reality. If you don't realize at least why "kids" are golden, you are a sick fuck.

 

I deleted that "sick fuck" part a couple of times to think of something better to say but I just get too disturbed by people who are ok with violence towards kids.

Corrupted_Wolf
Corrupted_Wolf

 @The_Last_Ride It's obviously referring to the aggression and sexual aggression towards non-combatant women in the game.

Glupie
Glupie

 @Senor_Kami 

 

I can still slap them around with that big fat wobbly purple dong in Saints Row 3!

 

Even fun when using a female character.

 

And I wouldn't worry about that last part. Feminites are probably crying that the females are too much being in side-kicks already too. But when the asian games star females as the main lead, they complain that the female is too "sexy".

 

There's just no pleasing em, they'll make sure video-games end up as censored cycle trash for any little thing.

DIGN
DIGN

 @Senor_Kami watchout, you might have to change your avatar too. It might be seen as degrading women to advertise your post.

Glupie
Glupie

 @Spacerac 

 

LOL! I know Kratos is an equal oportunity brutalizer. Which is why I love his character from the start! :)

GAME-QUEST-EX
GAME-QUEST-EX

 @MrStarkiller 

 

Almost everything is now "Data-Driven," even in the game industry. And, that affects their decision-making process, for better or worse.

 

Developers might decide to cut-out certain subject matter, because some data or another calculated by their PR/Marketing People, shows that a certain demographic of the gaming population would be too offended, by say, excessive violence against female characters in certain video games.

Serron_Rudayus
Serron_Rudayus

 @thingta42  @DSkinMasque Minor question, if I may. You say no women = no human race? Does that mean women can reproduce without male assistance? How? I always figured that it took both males and females to make a child. As far as I know, human's have not found a way of creating an artificial sperm cell. So don't think you are all high and mighty and that we need only you to reproduce. We are all equal, and we need each other equally. No women = no human race, but no men = no pregnant women = no human race. Think a bit before you embarrass yourself.

On a side note, I was drawn to God of War due to the violence. It doesn't need to be reduced, it needs to remain constant. And I can't wait for it to come out!

DrYnot
DrYnot

 @thingta42 

Cry me a fucking river. When you throw that helpless, weeping man into the fire to open a door in GoW 1 nobody seemed to have a problem with it but do it to a woman and suddenly oh you can't do that? Why? Is your life worth more than mine? Why is imaginary violence against noncombatants of my gender okay but not yours?

 

Feminists are the biggest hypocrites on earth.

MrStarkiller
MrStarkiller

 @Corrupted_Wolf  @DSkinMasque >had to be obscene

Squirt some tears and deal with it.

 

>obviously referring to

The preferential treatment women already have in GoW not being good enough?  So we've noted at length.  Good of you to join in, chap.

Dawg9000
Dawg9000

 @Corrupted_Wolf It's retards like you that increase the misandry in our country. Real life, women and children are untouched. We're playing video games, everything moral flies right out the window, because it's not reality. Would people really give more of a shit about Manhunt 2 if you played as a chick? Nope, but if you were a dude doing all that crap to them, you already know the mass media hysteria that would happen. It's been years now, I still say eff Bethesda for not letting me annhilate every little bastard in Little Lamplight. You agree with them, so screw you too.

Noformation
Noformation

 @Corrupted_Wolf A life is a life. Be it a young or old one or a male or female. You could argue that a child's life is of lesser value, being that most children do not have the cognitive skills to process death in it's entirety and usually have not accomplished much in life besides being born. Or of greater value because they are the future of human existence.

 

So to rhetorically insult a person over theory/thought makes you a sick fuck as well.

RedLegZeff
RedLegZeff

 @DrYnot  @thingta42 I wouldn't say this person is an example of a feminist. It is true violence against women has been somewhat taboo, in theory, at least in the last couple centuries. Though raping them and such was looked on less critically until modern times. And they are more valuable biologically. 10 women and 1 man can have 10 kids a year, 10 men and 1 woman can have 1 kid a year. Still, the push in recent years is towards equality but there is a double standard as violence against men is ok but women is taboo. Though really no violence in reality is ok, and using it as entertainment is wrong in many ways. Domestic violence is still an issue, usually against women, so any kind of violence towards women in entertainment can be hazardous. I like to think someday we'll have true equality and not have to worry about constant violence in reality. Until then, it's a balancing act in what we allow and what we don't in entertainment. I don't really find issue with kratos tearing the head off of a medusa, but maybe I'm wrong.