The recent trailer for Hitman Absolution (Im not going to include a link because that would defeat the point of this post) has caused quite a storm around the Internet recently. The video features a group of scantily clad nuns with sub-machine guns and rocket launchers having an action packed shoot out with Agent 47. The trailer is sleek, good looking and, depending on your viewpoint, highly sexy or highly shocking.
The most notable reaction comes from an article IGN's Keza MacDonald wrote on it where she highlights the fact that it is sexualising violence. Hers is just one example of a reaction many people have had to it. This post isn't about whether the trailer is offensive or not or whether people should take offence or just deal with it. It is about a different problem altogether.
The trailer was designed to shock, and it has shocked. The problem is if you don't protest about its offensiveness then it is left to be watched by millions of people and all of a sudden sexualising women and violence is ok, but if you do protest against it then you create a great deal of publicity for the game. Either way it's a win for the advertisers and a lose for people who are offended by the advert and our concerned with such issues, as we surely all should be.
I'm not saying we should remain silent and allow such adverts to be spread, the sexualisation of violence and the objectification of women in games is, quite frankly, disgusting and is damaging to the industry and the hobby, in the same way it is to literature, music and film. The thing is we should temper our reactions and try not to create unnecessary press for the company because this will only encourage further vulgar tactics.
Perhaps we could try to ignore the chock tactics and they would realise the advert doesn't work or, failing this, we could simply try and oppose it in such a way that doesn't feature articles on the front pages of gaming websites with videos of the trailer embedded into them.