And even more telling. When people (guys) complain about ‘realism’ in games or movies, they are not really talking about literal realism. That’s not what they mean. The word they are reaching for is verisimilitude - in other words: that which breaks the illusion.
When we say of a piece of fiction that contains dragons, flying suits of armor, or aliens that it is ‘realistic’, what we really mean is that it feels real - that the characters reactions, the world built around the fantastical elements and how the non-fantastical elements interact with them seems “true” to us. We look at it and nod and say to ourselves inside “Yes, that is how someone would react to seeing a giant monster” or “Yes, that seems like how society would react to an alien invasion” - the world around the made-up stuff is carefully designed and seems thought-out enough that we buy it emotionally, even if we know that logically it is nonsense.
So when someone complains that a medieval fantasy world does not feel “realistic” without the ugly oppression, dehumanization, and violation of women as a standard background element, what they are saying is that those details feel right to them. That the world, without that misogyny, is not emotionally satisfying. They are saying they need that there for the world to make sense.
THIS. This so hard.