Transworld Omnigendered in Metaplace

by Alphaville Herald on 15/06/09 at 8:22 am

Will avatar poses lead to matriarchal society? It works for hyenas!

by Pixeleen Mistral, National Affairs desk


Fiend sits uncomfortably

The story of how Fiend Ludwig and I discovered of the transworld omnigendered nature of Metaplace started simply enough. Fiend was in the Herald offices sitting uncomfortably on a couch, leaning slightly forward and rubbing his hands together. He seemed ill at ease, and confessed a certain discomfort with Raph’s Koster’s worlds – why did I look so relaxed while Fiend’s avatar looked dorky? Could there be some sort of gender bias at play in the avatar animations?

There was only one way to be sure, so we both opened a second web browser window and stopped by The New You shop in Metaplace Central. This is where Fiend's avatar underwent a sex change operation, and emerged with a new more feminine form. However, in the other window Fiend and I were still sitting on the couch at the Herald – where Fiend was still a boy. We realized that whether by design or by accident Metaplace was fundamentally a transworld omnigendered experience.

As Fiend got in touch with her feelings about himself, we speculated on what conclusions might be drawn about the Metaplace developers based on their avatar animations – were they consciously trying to create a world to attract more girls – or was the boys nervousness an unconscious mirroring of real life attitudes?


Fiend: Pix, girls always make boys nervous, even in real life
Pixeleen: perhaps this is really just some latent unease on the part of the developers in MP manifesting itself
Fiend: I am sure it is, otherwise why would the boy avs look so dorky when they sit

Pixeleen: are they even conscious of this subtle bias?
Fiend: I doubt it, boys are generally a bit thick that way

Pixeleen: Fiend, guys usually look dorky
Fiend: My point exactly. The developer is definitely a somewhat shy dweeb who is nervous around girls and finds them a bit scary. Or maybe not.


two girls with attitude

Pixeleen: what is your advice to the MP devs then?
Fiend: Base the boy av sitting posture on a cool movie star like…
Pixeleen: brad pitt?
Fiend: Brad Pitt or Sean Connery, instead of on their cubicle neighbour

Pixeleen: we can only hope they will listen to us – before it is to late
Fiend: hope is all us dorky boys have

Pixeleen: Why do you think girl avs are cooler than boy avs in MP?
Fiend: the sit pose posture and av body language suggests a certain superiority over boy avs.
Fiend: the girl sit pose ROCKS
Fiend: I especially like the foot shake
Fiend: imparts a sense of impatience
Fiend: the girl stand is cooler too – hand on hip – attitude!
Pixeleen: I know exactly what you mean


Pixeleen: Will this perhaps lead to a matriarchal society?
Fiend: It works for hyenas!

Pixeleen: I want a hug emote – that is something I could really use
Fiend: funny – when I'm a girl I think I want a hug emote too!

Pixeleen: Does this gender flexibility cause you any consternation?
Fiend: Well, yes and no. Being a transworld omnigendered person definitely has its challenges. Like being a boy in one world and a girl in another at the same time. Sometimes it is hard to keep track. But it also gives me the flexibilty to manipulate the reactions of other MP residents more effectively.

Pixeleen: Do you prefer being a boy or a girl in MP?
Fiend: Yes.

Pixeleen: Do you think girls are treated better in MP?
Fiend: Yes, I get more free stuff given to me as a girl, but I have to endure more leering. But if I get a bit down as a girl in Central I can always go back to my Home world and console myself as a boy.

One Response to “Transworld Omnigendered in Metaplace”

  1. moeshere

    Jun 27th, 2009

    very good story and never thougth about it that way…now we have fags too lol…joke

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