Borderlands 2's 'Girlfriend Mode' and casual sexism

Gamasutra - Game Developer magazine EIC Brandon Sheffield examines the internet fury over a Borderlands 2 skill tree, unofficially dubbed "girlfriend mode." Is this an example of "casual sexism" in the game industry?

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d0nni32192d ago

Again gaming journalism or just journalists in general taking a throw away comment and running with it, it's all about the hits at the end of the day.

It was a comment about people who don't play games as much as the majority of us on here and it's been blown way of out proportion. Sexism? that's making mountains out of molehills! i know this is an opinion piece but it's this kind of press that makes us all look like bickering fools who argue over the pettiest things


Hufandpuf2192d ago

he chose the wrong word. There are girlfriends that play games as much as their boyfriends do. I'm not saying your overreacting but it was just a poor choice of words altogether.

sjaakiejj2192d ago (Edited 2192d ago )

He never said or implied that there aren't any girlfriends that play video games. He was speaking in the context of people who don't play video games, and the majority of the time that that bothers someone is in a relationship, and the majority of the time that this is the case, it's the girlfriend, not the boyfriend, who doesn't play many games.

Clarifying why he said that is that that's probably the situation in which he's currently in himself.

Is it a negative generalization that most women play predominantly casual games? No, because it's actually based on statistics _and_ it's not negative. On top of that, it implies that boyfriends want to spend more time with their girlfriends, at a level appropriate for them. Win-win right?

Yi-Long2192d ago (Edited 2192d ago )

... this is just some idiots blowing a simple normal comment way out of proportion just to score some hits or push some agenda...

Not every minority-stereotype means it's racism.

Not every sexy game-babe means it's sexism.

And when a developer mentions a 'casual' co-op option so you can play it with your girlfriend (or anyone else who isn't into games), it doesn't mean girls can't play games or whatever. It just means what it means, namely a casual co-op option to bring in someone into the game to enjoy it with you, who otherwise might find it too hard and wouldn't enjoy it or even try it.

Seriously, people need to stop being so over-sensitive and try to turn every little thing into a big drama, and they should just grow up and play games.

Kin23g2191d ago

Well said. Finally, someone who knows what they're talking about.

vickers5002192d ago (Edited 2192d ago )


Yes, and there are also girlfriends that don't. That mode (which isn't even called girlfriend mode) is for those who don't play video games very often. They do exist as well. Besides, it's not even officially called "girlfriend mode", so I don't understand people are even getting upset about it. It's just a word he used to describe the skill tree for those who don't know what it is, he most likely applied that term to his own life when he said it, and his girlfriend probably doesn't play video games much or at all, and he assumed (as he has every right to, because it's true for many people) that MANY other girlfriends of gamers don't play as well, and that skill tree is for them, to enjoy their hobby a little bit more with their girlfriends.

Obviously the guy isn't saying "every girlfriend ever doesn't play video games as much as their boyfriend", only a f*cking moron would read it that way or get upset at his comment. There is NOTHING wrong with his comment. As I said, it doesn't say or imply that it's for ALL girlfriends, and if you (everyone who has a problem with his comment) weren't complete morons who could understand the concept of "context", then you would understand that. But it's obvious people just want to look for things to be offended by, rather than reading a comment for what it really is.

HammadTheBeast2192d ago

Funny, most chicks don't care or want to care about this, yet some "gamer gurlz" are offended, and those are the ones writing these completely ridiculous articles.

All he said was, that if you want some casual gamer, say for example you girlfriend, to play with you (lolololol), then you can show them an additional casual tree.

It was a joke.

Rock_On_PS42192d ago (Edited 2192d ago )

Some male gamers are typically super geeks and having a female gf in a video game is the closest thing they would ever get to being with a human female.

Theangrybogan2192d ago

It just seems that the majority of articles about sexism in gaming seem to be written by dudes who act offended but don't actually gauge the opinion of woman. I don't see how some people can justify their opinions, when it's obvious they have no context. Just read this article the dude craps on about woman's rights but not one woman is actually quoted where as about 5 dudes are.

STOP BEING OFFENDED ON PEOPLES BEHALF AND REPORT SOME ACTUAL NEWS! And if you're going to write a piece about sexism how about you attempt to talk to some woman instead of assuming you know what offends them.

Puddlejumper752192d ago

I don't normally do this,but it bugged me. It's women not woman. Woman is singular, women is plural. I don't know you so English might not be your first language and I'm not trying to make it an attack or say you are dumb in any way. We all make mistakes. Just wanted to clarify that one simple mistake for future reference.