Note: This is a quickly written post. I may edit it to rearrange things, fix errors, and/or add examples after the list.
Note 2: Vulgar language has been censored so younger people can access this article.
Step 1: Know the difference between avoiding & boycotting.
You avoid a videogame when it’s just not your type. Don’t like puzzles? Don’t play the Prof. Layton series. Don’t like playing/protagonist white guys? …Same thing.
When you boycott something, you outright say that you’re upset with that game/series. Either you’re appalled by something extraordinarily wrong they put in; or you’re incredibly dissapointed with the game you love.
If it’s the latter; maybe you’re tired of an annoying aspect the game series have, or you’re rejecting something new they’ve thrown in, or it could just be a declination that they’ve beem having (each sequel gets worse and worse).
Step 2: Know what you’re mad about.
Make sure you can pinpoint all the things you dislike. If you’re physically able to, get out a journal. Not a writing app. Get out a PEN & paper and just start writing. No erasing, this is a private entry for your thoughts. Just go on and write about all the things you dislike and why.
You might find that the ones preoccupying your mind are actually okay. You might discover new ones that are much worse.
The point is to gain clarity on your own issues with the work and why they’re problematic.
Step 3: How upset are you over this?
Is this a mild case: “yeah, this thing sucks, but I still love it anyways.”
Or a strong case: “I’m tired this bulls**t that you’re doing!” or “This is so superbly messed up, how could you do this?!”
If it’s a mild case, you should consider if boycotting is really the right thing for you (or the people you’re helping out). Maybe boycotting it will make you feel slightly empty. Maybe it will make you more happy and fulfilled. Sometimes you won’t know until you start it.
If it’s a strong case, go right ahead. You know what you want.
Step 4: Will boycotting really help?
Sometimes boycotting gets you what you want. Othertimes, it just shuts down the company. Boycotting is about improving a company. If a company or series dies because you & others refused to finance it, then you’ve failed.
When a company starts producing works that satisfies you, then you’ve won. Both of you.
Occasionally you’ll get a company that refuses to do what you ask. Maybe your demands are too high, or against their ethics, or they can’t do it for legal reasons.
Or your demands are rather selfish and actually make things worse for the audience they’re aiming for.
No matter what, they can’t or won’t do it. In this case, your best bet is to find the core problem and redirect your attentions there or just avoid the company.
Step 4: Is your target the video game or the fandom influencing the video game?
Good businesses listen to their consumers. Sometimes, they listen to the other side. Compare different games the company produces (including outside of the series your focusing on). Do the new games show a trend of something the fans have been demanding? Or is it the companies own “invention”? Or have they been outright ignoring the fans requests?
Even if they aren’t listening to the fans, you may have to fight them for what you want anyways. May the flame wars ensue!
Step 5: Boycott it
Refuse to buying the game. Stop buying the series. With video games, I’d also recommend ignoring Let’s Plays of them. If you’re upset enough to let them go, then you need to let them go. Find a new game without those problems or advicate for them.
Step 6: Tell the game developers how they screwed up.
Write an angry letter to them.
Send your angry letter privately or post it to your wordpress/reddit/tumblr/youtube.
Tell the world.
Ensure that your letter is grammaticaly correct and concise. No one will pay attention to you if you write like a rambling middle-schooler using text-speak; nor an angry sailor.
Make sure the points make sense as well. They won’t listen to you if you sound like an extremist-anything/f***boy/ignorent person.
When I’m writing such letters, I imagine the narrator as a British Gentleman. It might sound silly, but posh men are considered the epitome of high-quality. And this includes their words. Such delicateness inclined to quality should guarantee that you’ll sound important. Or at least that you’re intelligent.
And that means your opinion will matter to them.
Children/teen boycotters: This means having someone read your letter before you send it. You should sound your age and also have your points easily understandable.
If you feel your age is important for the letter and you’re below 7th grade (13 years), I recommend leaving at least one (but not all) of the larger words misspelled. This is to ensure the game-developers know you are boycotting on your own standing, as opposed to your parents making you.
Unless you’re pointing out that you’re a high-achiever for the sake of your argument. Then nevermind.
Step 7: Start or sign a petition.
This is the most useful thing you can do. But it will probably only apply to game series or general company tendencies.
Signing/starting a petition forces game developers to pay attention to your needs. Things actually DO change thanks to change.org, ipetition, and other petition sites.
If you’re starting a petition, Remember the tips I gave you in step 6 and add leadership charisma. And if you’reva minor, ignore the advice about the slight vocabulary dumbing. You want to sound intelligent & mature here.
Make sure the number of signers is realistic. If you’re going after a popular series, you should go 10,000+.
Afterwards, you will want to spread the word. Go onto your blogging site and post those links! Go onto every YouTube Let’s Play, review, or GMV you can find and leave a comment with the brief description of the petition and leave a link!
Ask your friends to share it, even if they don’t play it.
Mention it when you play social games or go to fandom conventions.
Whatever you do, spread the word!
Step 8: Wait for results
Watch the game development. Watch for the company discussing the issue. Be prepared to stay on this for over a year, especially if you created a petition.
Or alternatively, just let it go. Move on with your life unless they secede and give you what you want.
If they refuse, reconsider what you were attacking. Were you in the wrong? Would the change really make things better? Why are the game developers ignoring or railing against your campaign? Do you miss/want the game enough to buy it?
If you win, then congrats! You made an effort and it worked! And hopefully, everything will be for the better.