Why am I in a nutshell?! How did I get in a nutshell? Who put me in this nutshell?! I’ll tell ya who. The dullard who wrote this, on wiki.media-culture.org:
“Whilst there are some video games that appeal to women there is a greater need for games to be designed by women for women. The video game industry must recognise the growing need for more female friendly games. Most women want to play games that encourage interaction between users and help foster friendships and relationships.”
I’m sorry what?
I don’t need my games made by women for me to find them interesting and relatable. Define a “female friendly game” exactly, you condescending prick. Are we supposed to only enjoy point-and-clicks that contain an abundant amount of pink and glitter and rainbows? That sucks, I freaking hate pink.
There are some issues with equality in games, some big ones, and I’ll write about exactly what’s wrong with it in-depth one day, but you know what? I signed up for it when I started pursuing a male-dominated past time. There are things the industry could do to make it nicer for women, but I don’t think it involves pandering and changing industry policies and actively trying to make women like games. There’s no push for the sewing industry to include more men for the sake of gender equality. Why do we need to do that in games? Gamers come in all different shapes and sizes, I don’t want to be categorised as a “girl gamer”, I’m happy with just “gamer” thanks. It’s reminiscent of the Actor/Actress debate. I get annoyed when people feel the need to put people in boxes like that. Can’t I just be under the “gamer” umbrella? Why do I need special games just for me? Why do I need to be pandered to and condescended because a game might make me feel sad about my self-image. Puh-lease. Give me what everyone else is playing, if I don’t like it, I’ll put it down and try something else. I’m a big girl.
Mentoring women designers in the games industry purely because they’re women is dumb. You shouldn’t get a job purely because of the genitals you were born with. We’re not all precious, timid, unique little butterflies that need to be taken care of. If a girl wants to work in games she should work her butt off to get there, just like anyone else.
Yes, a lot of women video game characters are hypersexualised and overdone. But how many Average Joe’s do you see playing male video game characters? Does Kratos make boys skip lunch and feel bad about themselves? It’s a caricature. A larger than life depiction. It’s par for the course. You don’t see a call for male characters in video games being dulled down because it makes the men feel inadequate. Suck it up girls! We’re stronger than this. You don’t need your character to resemble you in any way in order to enjoy it. Relate to their mission, their objective.
Stop treating girl gamers as different. We’re not, we like games, just like guys. We don’t need a special “section” in development houses populated entirely by women, making games for women. What gamers look for in a game is exactly the same no matter who they are: entertainment and escapism and FUN. Stop trying to suck the fun out of it by making sure no one is offended or upset. They’ll vote with their wallets if they don’t like it.
It feels good to get that out. Breeeeathe…. Rant over. I gotta zip!