Board 8 > Blizzard reveals their diversity tool

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AxemRedRanger
05/13/22 4:39:09 PM
#1:


https://www.activisionblizzard.com/newsroom/2022/05/king-diversity-space-tool

minmaxing diversity for fun and profit (?)


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pjbasis
05/13/22 4:46:30 PM
#2:


AxemRedRanger posted...
profit (?)

between 2017 and 2021 nearly 80% of the highest selling games in the world featured white, male protagonists

Apparantly not!

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UltimaterializerX
05/13/22 4:49:42 PM
#3:


AxemRedRanger posted...
https://www.activisionblizzard.com/newsroom/2022/05/king-diversity-space-tool

minmaxing diversity for fun and profit (?)
You'd think developers would have learned their lesson the hard way from Elden Ring embarrassing all of them. Gamers care about gameplay first and foremost. Nothing else.

This tool is great and all, but unless the actual games are good then it won't matter.

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Mac Arrowny
05/13/22 4:52:26 PM
#4:


is Link Asian or Caucasian?

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Xiahou Shake
05/13/22 4:54:58 PM
#5:


This is the most dystopian corporate thing I think I've ever seen, holy shit lmao. Like forget Diablo Immortal, this actually is so amazingly out of touch it seems like an April Fools joke.

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Mac Arrowny
05/13/22 4:59:02 PM
#6:


Xiahou Shake posted...
This is the most dystopian corporate thing I think I've ever seen, holy shit lmao. Like forget Diablo Immortal, this actually is so amazingly out of touch it seems like an April Fools joke.
how is this more dystopian than mistreating their female employees and driving one to suicide...?

not to mention their union-busting antics

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masterplum
05/13/22 5:10:31 PM
#7:


I am mixed

I think a tool to help avoid tropes is interesting. Not making every healer female or a wimpy priest guy is good.

I'm worried it's going to stigmatize generic characters though. I do want characters blank enough to be relatable

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Tom Bombadil
05/13/22 5:11:31 PM
#8:


Seems interesting at least.

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pjbasis
05/13/22 5:12:42 PM
#9:


masterplum posted...
I think a tool to help avoid tropes is interesting. Not making every healer female or a wimpy priest guy is good.

I'm worried it's going to stigmatize generic characters though

It works well with these champion type overwatch and league kind of games since character design is everything.

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Nanis23
05/13/22 5:23:56 PM
#10:


How are people ok with this? This is the most "forced diversity" I have ever seen
This is literally quota filling
"For every one male, we need one female"
"For every white person, we need one black person"

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Punnyz
05/13/22 5:26:22 PM
#11:


it makes sense considering how diverse they make their casts...

but at th same time..no it doesn't what the fuck LOL

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banananor
05/13/22 5:28:34 PM
#12:


this looks like a fancy way of saying they have a randomizer and logger/tracker

pretty silly for them to advertise it. i also don't see anything wrong with it. presumably they're mandated to show some kind of progress to their PR equivalent of a parole officer

it's clearly another tool people can look at for 2 seconds when whipping up new characters.

you can have whatever feelings you want about (i'm trying to phrase this as neutrally as possible) diversity in gaming, but these companies were already trying to come up with new ideas, and this is going to be one extra step in a pipeline

blizzard "proper" also hasn't used it yet. presumably King was using it to randomly generate stock characters for their mobile shovelware

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banananor
05/13/22 5:28:55 PM
#13:


Nanis23 posted...
How are people ok with this? This is the most "forced diversity" I have ever seen
are you having issues? is this a real "how the sausage is made" moment for you?


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Not_Wylvane
05/13/22 5:29:23 PM
#14:


My dick is a diversity tool, I'll put it into anything.

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SeabassDebeste
05/13/22 5:29:40 PM
#15:


masterplum posted...
I'm worried it's going to stigmatize generic characters though. I do want characters blank enough to be relatable

yeah, but if "blank" and "relatable" means "white male" then we have a pretty obvious issue

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HeroDelTiempo17
05/13/22 5:29:53 PM
#16:


I am skeptical an analytical tool is more useful for creating diversity than, say, hiring a diverse range of creators and staff, if that's your goal. But that sure sounds harder than...whatever this is.

This is probably my simplest and most generous take.

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Not_Wylvane
05/13/22 5:31:13 PM
#17:


Bobby Kotick is an analytical tool.

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Nanis23
05/13/22 5:33:42 PM
#18:


banananor posted...
are you having issues? is this a real "how the sausage is made" moment for you?
So only positive opinions are allowed? Got it, thanks

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banananor
05/13/22 5:34:24 PM
#19:


Nanis23 posted...
So only positive opinions are allowed? Got it, thanks
where did i say that? you didn't answer my question

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StealThisSheen
05/13/22 5:36:14 PM
#20:


We've seen Nanis flip out over diversity in hundreds of topics by now, best not to engage.

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Not_Wylvane
05/13/22 5:39:47 PM
#21:


Diversity is the guy from Three Dog Nights splitting his dick open in two from fucking too much. Lets him bang two groupies at once!

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banananor
05/13/22 5:40:52 PM
#22:


StealThisSheen posted...
We've seen Nanis flip out over diversity in hundreds of topics by now, best not to engage.
i know, i know. i guess i was in the mood to allow nanis to put himself under the magnifying glass again

you never know when someone will have a eureka moment

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Nanis23
05/13/22 5:41:52 PM
#23:


Like, think about it
What if someone comes up with a very good idea for a character
"Let's make a Monkey King type of character! " (let's ignore for a moment that MK is very overused and I don't want it, it's just an example)
And everyone really likes that idea
But then the Blizzard executives comes and say "this is a real good idea! but I have to shut it down. We don't have enough represantive for old people. So try to make that new character a crazy old professor instead"

Now granted, that old professor can be a very good and unique character too, but the original idea was shut down because of this and I am not a fan of this


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StealThisSheen
05/13/22 5:46:17 PM
#24:


Nanis23 posted...
Like, think about it
What if someone comes up with a very good idea for a character
"Let's make a Monkey King type of character! " (let's ignore for a moment that MK is very overused and I don't want it, it's just an example)
And everyone really likes that idea
But then the Blizzard executives comes and say "this is a real good idea! but I have to shut it down. We don't have enough represantive for old people. So try to make that new character a crazy old professor instead"

Now granted, that old professor can be a very good and unique character too, but the original idea was shut down because of this and I am not a fan of this

Why are you assuming they would automatically shut down a unique-ish character design instead of White Male #20,836,723,019? Do you think they only design one character at a time or something, instead of several options at once? Why couldn't they have Monkey King AND Old Professor? Sure, if it's down to those two and they only are allotting time to add one more, it's a direct either or choice, but...

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StealThisSheen
05/13/22 5:46:49 PM
#25:


banananor posted...
i know, i know. i guess i was in the mood to allow nanis to put himself under the magnifying glass again

you never know when someone will have a eureka moment

I can't talk. I just replied after "tsk tsk"ing you for doing so.

Gotta love Board 8, right?

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changmas
05/13/22 5:48:43 PM
#26:


HeroDelTiempo17 posted...
I am skeptical an analytical tool is more useful for creating diversity than, say, hiring a diverse range of creators and staff, if that's your goal. But that sure sounds harder than...whatever this is.

This is probably my simplest and most generous take.

this is the best take in this topic

Mac Arrowny posted...
how is this more dystopian than mistreating their female employees and driving one to suicide...?

not to mention their union-busting antics

honorable mention to this

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MoogleKupo141
05/13/22 5:49:10 PM
#27:


Nanis23 posted...
Like, think about it
What if someone comes up with a very good idea for a character
"Let's make a Monkey King type of character! " (let's ignore for a moment that MK is very overused and I don't want it, it's just an example)
And everyone really likes that idea
But then the Blizzard executives comes and say "this is a real good idea! but I have to shut it down. We don't have enough represantive for old people. So try to make that new character a crazy old professor instead"

Now granted, that old professor can be a very good and unique character too, but the original idea was shut down because of this and I am not a fan of this

why wouldnt they just make the monkey king character old


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StealThisSheen
05/13/22 5:51:08 PM
#28:


MoogleKupo141 posted...
why wouldnt they just make the monkey king character old

See, this is the kind of out of box thinking Blizzard needs. You're hired.

If Blizzard tries to tell you "We have nobody named SEP on our staff. Hell, that's not even a name," tell them to stuff it.

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GuessMyUserName
05/13/22 5:55:20 PM
#29:


HeroDelTiempo17 posted...
I am skeptical an analytical tool is more useful for creating diversity than, say, hiring a diverse range of creators and staff, if that's your goal. But that sure sounds harder than...whatever this is.

This is probably my simplest and most generous take.
I'd change skeptical with just not believing this is supposed to be "more useful" but yeah if this helps us get less homogenized protags then I mean sure cool

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banananor
05/13/22 6:10:14 PM
#30:


Nanis23 posted...
Like, think about it
What if someone comes up with a very good idea for a character
"Let's make a Monkey King type of character! " (let's ignore for a moment that MK is very overused and I don't want it, it's just an example)
And everyone really likes that idea
But then the Blizzard executives comes and say "this is a real good idea! but I have to shut it down. We don't have enough represantive for old people. So try to make that new character a crazy old professor instead"

Now granted, that old professor can be a very good and unique character too, but the original idea was shut down because of this and I am not a fan of this
you're imagining a creative team getting shut down by someone outside the team using this tool

if you have unrelated management coming down to stifle the creative team, that's a different problem. i guarantee you that these creative teams already care about diversity, but if it were to be forced from up top they wouldn't need a tool like this

what i think is, more likely, you have a group of people trying to brainstorm and they all have tons of creativity. they're a creative team. they have the confidence to create anything they want, and they start pulling stuff out of a hat to decide where to start brainstorming. this tool is just another hat to take into consideration

i'm honestly kind of curious as to why these things make you so alarmed

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Team Rocket Elite
05/13/22 6:11:58 PM
#31:


HeroDelTiempo17 posted...
I am skeptical an analytical tool is more useful for creating diversity than, say, hiring a diverse range of creators and staff, if that's your goal. But that sure sounds harder than...whatever this is.

This is probably my simplest and most generous take.


There could be a snowball effect going on here. Like if a company makes international news for being a crummy place for women to work, that's going to have a negative effect on the number of women that even apply to begin with. In particular, skilled workers that have their pick of jobs will take their skills elsewhere because they don't want to work for Activision Blizzard specifically.

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Not_Wylvane
05/13/22 6:12:42 PM
#32:


I don't think a creative team is allowed to be creative in Activision-Blizzard.

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UshiromiyaEva
05/13/22 6:25:09 PM
#33:


This comes out at the same time as the story that Respawn managent said that the lead in Fallen Order couldn't be black or a woman because "there's enough Diversity in Star Wars".

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HeroDelTiempo17
05/13/22 6:41:13 PM
#34:


Team Rocket Elite posted...
There could be a snowball effect going on here. Like if a company makes international news for being a crummy place for women to work, that's going to have a negative effect on the number of women that even apply to begin with. In particular, skilled workers that have their pick of jobs will take their skills elsewhere because they don't want to work for Activision Blizzard specifically.

Absolutely! And if the work culture is bad enough to begin with there's probably diverse perspectives present that aren't even being listened to.

I can think of some ways to solve a lot of these issues while also making Blizzard more attractive in the job market, such as improving working conditions and benefits, changing the office culture to be more inclusive, and allowing the employees to unionize.

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KamikazePotato
05/13/22 6:47:09 PM
#35:


UshiromiyaEva posted...
This comes out at the same time as the story that Respawn managent said that the lead in Fallen Order couldn't be black or a woman because "there's enough Diversity in Star Wars".
To be fair, Fallen Order's main character is a male redhead, which is practically its own minority in games

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UshiromiyaEva
05/13/22 6:50:27 PM
#36:


KamikazePotato posted...
To be fair, Fallen Order's main character is a male redhead, which is practically its own minority in games

Warner Bros can solve all our problems by release a Guy Gardner GL game.

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GuessMyUserName
05/13/22 6:51:32 PM
#37:


UshiromiyaEva posted...
This comes out at the same time as the story that Respawn managent said that the lead in Fallen Order couldn't be black or a woman because "there's enough Diversity in Star Wars".
https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Rule_of_Two

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GANON1025
05/13/22 8:42:51 PM
#38:


I keep thinking that must have been a leak, then recalling that they put it out themselves thinking it made them look good.

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Jakyl25
05/13/22 8:43:26 PM
#39:


https://www.reddit.com/r/Gamingcirclejerk/comments/up1guf/meanwhile_at_nintendo_hq/

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masterplum
05/13/22 9:10:24 PM
#40:


SeabassDebeste posted...
yeah, but if "blank" and "relatable" means "white male" then we have a pretty obvious issue

I mean I care less about playing as white or a man and more about interesting personality choices.

I just don't want the personality of characters to be solely based on their minority status

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NFUN
05/13/22 9:12:13 PM
#41:


you want interesting personalities to be blank and generic

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foolm0r0n
05/13/22 9:25:23 PM
#42:


Nanis23 posted...
Like, think about it
You first

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foolm0r0n
05/13/22 9:29:23 PM
#43:


I honestly like the tool in concept, but the execution makes no sense. All the ratings are subjective anyway so how does it help? There doesn't seem to be a tangible metric that it lets you optimize for.

If there was a system in there for testing with various demographics and seeing how much people like or identify with the character, that would be useful. Or more of a red flag / green flag system.

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foolm0r0n
05/13/22 9:33:13 PM
#44:


masterplum posted...
I just don't want the personality of characters to be solely based on their minority status
That's impossible if you can't think about anything but race and gender when seeing a minority character. Nothing the character actually says or does matters. Lots of gamers are like that. Nothing the designers can do about that (other than using more minority representation of course)

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VintageGin
05/13/22 10:55:33 PM
#45:


foolm0r0n posted...
I honestly like the tool in concept, but the execution makes no sense. All the ratings are subjective anyway so how does it help? There doesn't seem to be a tangible metric that it lets you optimize for.

If there was a system in there for testing with various demographics and seeing how much people like or identify with the character, that would be useful. Or more of a red flag / green flag system.

I am fairly certain that it's just a weighted system measuring deviation from the most common. My guess is that they input some set of protagonists and their characteristics, and valued the most common at "0".

Since you're essentially just looking at how "common" each quality is, I think it's probably a relatively objective way to measure things. Of course, you'd have to discount the fact that categorization is something that people are generally bad at (including those who built the tool).

It's not a very sophisticated-looking tool-- seems like it'd mostly be useful for identifying gaps than any actual guided development, but maybe that's what they're using it for. Plus (questionable) PR.

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masterplum
05/13/22 10:58:02 PM
#46:


foolm0r0n posted...
That's impossible if you can't think about anything but race and gender when seeing a minority character. Nothing the character actually says or does matters. Lots of gamers are like that. Nothing the designers can do about that (other than using more minority representation of course)

I mean, renegade fem shep is probably my favorite character in all of gaming, so you can have a minority have a personality. I've just seen some minorities be really one note before.

I am talking myself into thinking this is a some video games have bad writing problem moreso than any sort of diversity problem

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Paratroopa1
05/13/22 11:00:39 PM
#47:


masterplum posted...


I am talking myself into thinking this is a some video games have bad writing problem moreso than any sort of diversity problem
congrats on your brain growing a wrinkle
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Mewtwo59
05/13/22 11:01:58 PM
#48:


UshiromiyaEva posted...
This comes out at the same time as the story that Respawn managent said that the lead in Fallen Order couldn't be black or a woman because "there's enough Diversity in Star Wars".

Huh. The reason I heard was that they didn't want a female protagonist because she'd be overshadowed by Rey since the game came out a month before Episode 9.

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PerfectChaosZ
05/14/22 5:07:58 AM
#49:


They could have made the Fallen Order Jedi like an alien or something.
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MariaTaylor
05/14/22 6:15:13 AM
#50:


"We want to see ourselves represented in games"

no we don't.

literally one sentence into their mission statement and it's already entirely built upon a fallacious and incorrect assumption

two more sentences in and they are citing some bizarre survey which specifically says that it did not actually use any kind of representative sampling. the literal introduction to the paper is more or less 'this survey isn't valid, we just asked around by word of mouth.'

guess the eggheads at blizzard put all of their diverse brains together and found a way to understand the validity of a paper that denounces its own validity in the opening statement.


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