WTF Is Going On In There? Inappropriate Game Advertisements

Because some games still think I am a closet psychopath with control issues and severely limiting social disorders that, among other things, render me incapable of making non-boob-oriented decisions. Or they think I'm a prepubescent middle schooler who just hit puberty.

The year is 2013... right? Indeed. It is a time of progression, of forward thinking. It is a time of expansion, of pushing the limitations of human boundaries in all walks of life, a time in which we as a society our truly engaging with and redefining societal inequality.

Leaps and bounds have been made in the field of gaming, allowing many women to gain the same respect and admiration as their male cohorts in a male dominated field. It's only fair after all, especially when you consider that we're all nerds when the lights go out and the console lights up. It's almost enough to make your chest swell with pride, like, 'look at my people and how far they have come!' You know, right up until you see something like this.

Wow....way to kill my vibe. Umm...no thank you scantily clad mystery woman. 

Um, no that's okay, strange scantily clad mystery woman.

I uh...don't even know you.

Because now and then I see something on the internet that makes me double take on the calendar, check the year, date, and time, and ask myself if I am in some weird Twilight Zone dimension.

Apparently, I still am

Warning: Apparently Wartune is code for an intergalactic portal with a peculiar fancy for the souls of young men that goes straight into a black hole on the other side of the galaxy.

Ok, pinching still hurts, so apparently this is still happening. So if the reality I am currently perceiving is in fact actuality, then that also means I must accept that while I was lollygagging and minding my own business on what most would consider a PG-13 appropriate site, this happens. And happens. And happens.

I think....I need an adult. Oh wait.

I think I need an adult. Oh wait...

This is usually the point where I slowly vacate my seat and evacuate the premises like a bat out of hell, but the bad thing about browsing on the internet is there is NO ESCAPE. Not when you're merrily watching game reviews on YouTube, casually scrolling through your Facebook game archives or even when you're doing an innocent google search.

What do we call this horror, this waking nightmare that I cannot escape? The Tera effect? Gameageddon?  Like a cloud of bad BO from someone standing too close to you, this  sneaks up behind you ready to ruin your day and make you wish there was an app for that. Before I was aware of it, I realized this wasn't the first time nor the last. Of course back then I paid half-naked women in gaming ads about as much attention as I paid to educational programming forced on me at daycare. None. The scary part? From game blogs to search browsers to reading comics online, Wartune ads kept finding me.

I blame Evony for this.

Wasn't this supposed to be the revolution? You know, the year of the woman in games? Of reclaiming her voice and putting her foot down, complete with a sassy snapsnapneckroll? All I know is I'm confused, disturbed, and... confused.

I honestly feel as if this should not still be happening. I suppose I was looking for bonfires and pandemonium, and got more of this for my efforts. Aeria games apparently thinks I'm a mentally disturbed e-rapist with control issues, and Wartune still thinks I'm 12. But then again, Aeria Games did make Scarlet Blade, so I honestly don't know what I was expecting. Way to ruin my childhood, Aeria, you used to have such wholesome tween approved games. But by now you know that I have a few non-negotiable deal breakers, and scantily clad women in games is one of them.

You really think Wartune would have learned by now, especially considering they pretty much got their fannies handed to them back in May for using the super rare AO (Adults Only) Rating as a selling point in a few of their online advertisements. Wartune claimed that the AO rating was granted through the ESRB, even though the turn based role-playing game has not actually been rated. Even stranger than the self applied rating is there is absolutely no reason for the game's AO rating in the first place (If you don't count the suspect advertisements.)

A ingame Wartune screenshot. Despite belief, nothing sexy happening here.

A Wartune in-game screenshot. Nothing sexy to see here folks.

It's your typical grind fest. You play it for five seconds, get bored once you realize you have to wait for your time/energy etc to replenish, leave, and never come back. I would know considering I made a Wartune account somewhere in the distant past. Of course, this was certainly long before they got to the point of, you know, offering orgies for registrations. That wasn't exactly mentioned when I created my account.

So here's a tough one my fellow gamers. With the very nature of the gaming sphere and the constantly shifting ideals of what defines creative expression and the exploration of sexual identity in games, at what point do we begin to hold companies legally and culturally responsible for ...ahem... this? This is especially important when we start talking online game promotion, which is in itself a grey area.

Considering there is no real defined and concrete frontier for browser games, it's easy for ads like Wartune's to be accessed for viewing through online portals that host games aimed at a younger audience. That's the crowd they want... which is also the crowd they would have to kick out, if that AO Rating ever proved true.

This, of course, just goes to show that this doesn't make Wartune ads any less creepy. Especially when you consider that my younger sister (who is still in her Runescape phase if that gives you a clue of how young she is) admitted that she has seen quite a few of these ads while derping around the internet. And by few, I mean all of them.

Contributor

Published Aug. 20th 2013
  • JessesanMan
    My biggest grievance with these ads is that, to me, they'ere selling it all short. I'm not interested in games because of the skimpy outfits or the female character models. Hell, I've tried searching the internet for a mod to make "Tera" armors more modest (there aren't any). I play games for game-play, story, and immersion. Yes, I like things to look good, but in the way that the rolling landscape looks good from a mountaintop, not "how much armor can we take off the girls and still consider it armor?"
    If I wanted to see naked women, I'd look up porn.
  • Person_2891
    You could always change your ad settings and if you're using Google Chrome like me you can download free ad blocker extensions.
  • Germ_the_Nobody
    Correspondent
    I laugh every single time I see ads like that. And I actually tend to ignore them. They certainly catch my eye but I basically "know better" by now. When I was younger it was easier to suck me into trying those games of course, and when I just wasn't used to ads being used just to lie and get you to look. I won't lie, I'm highly attracted to women, especially sexy ones.

    Scarlet Blades ads actually make perfect sense to me though. =p And surprisingly, I liked what I played of it. It's pretty entertaining and I love mechs.
  • GirlGoneGaming
    Contributor
    Man that's the first nice thing I've heard anyone say about Scarlet Blades since it came out haha! You're in quite the minority there, most people hate it xD
  • Germ_the_Nobody
    Correspondent
    I honestly believe that most of the negative feedback about the game comes from people that haven't even tried it and are only upset about the advertising and nudity.

    For me it's just the same old MMORPG that I'm tired of which is why I haven't continued playing it. But the graphics are pretty, the dialogue is extremely humorous, and the mechs are freakin awesome.

    I had issues with its UI and there are a few things I didn't like about it, but nothing that really stood out that that was different from problems in every other F2P MMORPG.
  • Ste Grainer
    Featured Correspondent
    Sex sells, no matter what the content it's selling. (Look at beer commercials, car commercials, and more. Even online education ads are more likely to feature attractive women.)

    While it's certainly demeaning and often ridiculously overplayed, I think the problem is less about the games themselves and more with the advertisers.

    If advertisers insist on using tracking cookies (and apparently they're lobbying Congress hard to keep that "right"), then they should also allow me to set tracking cookies for what's appropriate to show to me. Since my toddler will soon be using the computer, I'd love to be able to specifically block ads like this (among others).
  • GirlGoneGaming
    Contributor
    I agree! And for a game like Wartune, where the advertisements seemed extremely counterproductive considering the actual game play was so far removed from being rated AO that it was laughable. I definitely agree with the tracking cookies, that should really be an option, and that's especially if you're going to be forcing unwanted pixel orgies on me

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