Penny Arcade: The Dickwolves Joke

Yes, you read that right. Dickwolves.

On August 11, 2010, Penny Arcade published a comic that was meant to be a funny commentary on the bizarre morality displayed with MMOs

965474677_7etTF-LIt was meant to be a parody. I somewhat remember reading it when it was posted.It wasn’t groundbreaking. It was clever for what it was meant to do.

But it had unintended consequences.

Penny Arcade received e-mails and tweets from unhappy fans who believed they were making light of what should be a very serious topic. And the writers of Penny Arcade responded with what was the first of several huge mistakes.

First, they mocked the people who complained:


The followed this up by calling the people hypocrites.


But this wasn’t all. They followed this up with a shirt:

dickwolves-shirtAnd yes, they wore it to PAX

Gabe1Lovely how it was retweeted by someone called “teamrape” and Gabe didn’t seem to blink. And with that in mind, Gabe kept on mocking any and all critics. Look at this:


So some times passed and the shirt was removed from the site. Gabe was able to re-think his actions and actually came to regret what he did and said.


So, why did I share all this information?

The video game industry will always be judged by the worst that it does. By industry, I mean the companies, the journalists, and the gamers. Everyone involved will only be judged by the very worst actions that was done. Retake Mass Effect 3 was judged publicly based off the minority of whiners. It didn’t matter they raised over $80,000 for charity. They were judged by the actions of a few. Or with video games themselves. The industry is judged publicly from games like Rapelay, GTA, and other violent games. Everyone ignores the phenomenal advancements in storytelling, gameplay, graphics, and overall technological achievements. The focus is on the violence. It is horrible that this happens. Absolutely horrible. But you know what? It does happen.

PAX is the largest gaming convention in North America and garners the most attention. The slightest mention of the shirt dragged back up this controversy. Something like this will be an albatross around Penny Arcade (rightfully so) and the industry as a whole.

Why does any of this matter?

It really does have to do with the future of the industry. Most female gamers can tell you all about the harassment they get when they play online games from male gamers. Most games out there dress women in clothes that would make strippers and street walkers blush. At this point, the industry is seen as misogynistic. We as gamers have our own opinions on this. I don’t mind the way the women are dressed but I can see why others would mind. I won’t raise an eyebrow if I hear complaints since, well.. I can see why someone would be offended.

But as I said, we are judged by the worst.

The industry will be judged solely on the violence of the games. Judged by the sexuality of the games. And yes, judged because of the months of insensitivity from Penny Arcade.

(note – images owned by Penny Arcade. Also pulled from a tumblr site)


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