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Subject: Most Condescending Game Ever. rss

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Wei-Hwa Huang
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So, like, in the original Careers, there are these "Experience" cards you can get. To use them, you play them instead of rolling the die. This lets you
control what space you go to instead of going to a random space, and adds a substantial amount of strategy to the game.

Well, they removed those in "Careers for Girls". Apparently girls can't handle strategy in games.

Also, in the original game, you got to decide on a secret distribution; this meant that everyone had their own customized goal, and it's not as easy to tell who is closer to winning.

Well, they removed that in "Careers for Girls." Apparently all girls should share the same goals.

Oh, and there are the actual careers. First off, there
are six instead of eight. Apparently girls don't have
as many career choices. Of the surviving careers:

"Politics" has become "Fashion Designer", because girls
shouldn't go into politics.

"The Arts" has become "Rock Star". I guess girls don't know what "The Arts" mean.

One of the careers is called "Animal Doctor".
Apparently girls wouldn't know the word "veternarian".

Oh, and "Astronaut" is now called "Super Mom"!
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Jeff M
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Re:Most Condescending Game Ever.
onigame (#77762),

This is really disturbing. Was this game really made as recently as 1990? It seems to want to perpetuate the gender stereotypes of the 1950s.

I can't imagine giving this game to a girl you cared about. The regular Careers should be every bit as appropriate for girls as it is for boys.
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Randall Bart
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About 1960 Lionel Trains made the Lady Lionel series. It was a bunch of normal trains with girlie paint jobs. But that was the most condescending toy eve, and you asked for a game.

Yeah, maybe this was. I believe you're wrong about the reduction eight to six career loops; that happened to the main game first. I never had it, so I wasn't aware the experience cards and personal success formula had been eliminated. Dumbing it down for the girls. A similar thing happend to Sid Saxon's 3M game Bazaar.[1] There was a later edition by an "educational" games company, where they made four or five changes in the rules, and every last change was dumbing it down. They did it lower the minimum age to 8 (though the rules weren't that complicated, and some changes just made it dumber not simpler). At least simplifying for 8 year olds makes some theoretical sense. Simplifying for girls?

[1] Not to be confused with other games named Bazaar, some of them by Sid Saxon.
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Anthony Simons
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Well I have to point out that some of the changes you highlight are changes that were implemented in later versions of Careers (in the 1980's). For example, there are only six careers to choose from (politics, entertainment, law, business, sport and art).

But apart from that it isn't so much condescention as catering for the market it is aimed at - young girls who dream of glamour. You just don't get many politically-oriented ten-year-old girls interested in painting and sculpture or taking a rocket to the moon; fashion, babies being on stage and the like are roles which appeal to them.
 
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Jesse Miller
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fellonmyhead wrote:
Well I have to point out that some of the changes you highlight are changes that were implemented in later versions of Careers (in the 1980's). For example, there are only six careers to choose from (politics, entertainment, law, business, sport and art).

But apart from that it isn't so much condescention as catering for the market it is aimed at - young girls who dream of glamour. You just don't get many politically-oriented ten-year-old girls interested in painting and sculpture or taking a rocket to the moon; fashion, babies being on stage and the like are roles which appeal to them.


So you don't think that the environment in which a person is raised has an effect on the choices she considers? Shouldn't we comment on these when we see them? There's an element of self-fullfilling prophacy here: if you (by you I mean we) think that girls are shallow, dim, and vain and make products that reflect this, what sort of people do you think you end up with?
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Matt Keyes
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THE ONLY JOBZ GOOD FOR WOMEN ARE THESE, AM I RITE BOYZ?
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Anthony Simons
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yossarians wrote:
So you don't think that the environment in which a person is raised has an effect on the choices she considers?


Yes, but I don't believe any boardgame can be held responsible for creating that environment; there are many other influences. If there wasn't a market for it they wouldn't make it (and indeed I don't think they do anymore - I haven't seen this game ever).

yossarians wrote:
Shouldn't we comment on these when we see them?


By all means; but is it really condescending when a product caters for an audiences tastes?

yossarians wrote:
There's an element of self-fullfilling prophacy here: if you (by you I mean we) think that girls are shallow, dim, and vain and make products that reflect this, what sort of people do you think you end up with?


So you view girls following their sexual stereotypes as "shallow, dim and vain" do you? Perhaps we should force-feed them wargames instead?

I don't think a product which encourages young girls to pursue what might be their dream job reflects any of those, nor do I consider it condescending.

Perhaps you feel if you (and by "you" I mean we) give a toy to your child that they actually want then they will grow up to be something you don't want?
 
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J Mathews
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While I am in no way defending this pathetic excuse of a game, I think that you are putting much more emphasis in the power of a game to shape 8-10 yr old girl's career choices than is justified. When I was playing Careers when I was young I never actually thought that there were only that many careers out there and I didn't grow up to follow any of those career paths in real life.

Admittedly, I am not a girl but if you are saying that girls are swayed more by external factors than boys are, I'm going to let you make that statement. There are lots of environmental components to take into account for why people make certain decisions and parents and school are much higher on the list than poorly designed, stereotypical games. My wife used to love playing Pretty, Pretty Princess when she was a kid. Was that a causal factor to the fact that now she stays home with our daughter rather than working? Or is it the fact that I make enough money that we can afford to have her stay home. Honestly, I don't blame her. If I could afford to stay home and be with my family, I'd take that choice too. But I can't say that board games play any part in either mine or her preferences.

Edit:
I also remember in some of the Developmental Psychology classes that I took in college this subject coming up and there were many, many opinions about it. It comes down to the fact that the whole "nature vs nurture" thing is a false dichtomy that biological sciences have gotten over years ago while scoial sciences are still hung up on due to political reasons and the fact that the actual truth doesn't help ether side.

But there are families where the boys have grown up without tv and the parents are pacifistic and they still grab celery sticks and shoot each other with them while other families have boys and buy them the stereotypical toys and the kids have no interest in them. Same with girls.
 
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