Watch the video. Then feminist discussion. GO.




Also, potential discussion questions that you could answer! If you want. Or you could just ramble about the topic yourself, it doesn't really matter. :]

-What is your experience as a girl gamer? What sort of games do you play, and would you consider yourself more of a casual gamer, or shoulder-to-shoulder with your boy-ish peers? And do you know many other girl gamers?
-How welcome do you feel as a female gamer? Do boys treat you well when gaming with them (offline or online)? Have you ever encountered verbal harassment while playing online, and how did you feel if it happened?
-What is your opinion, as a girl, on these highly sexualized women as seen in games such as: Tomb Raider, Bayonetta, WET, et. al.? Anything where the lady is... uh... "gratuitously proportionalized," if you will. Or scantly clad. Either/or.
-What are some positive female figures that you've seen in video games? Furthermore, what kind of female character do you think you'd most relate to? If you could create a female character from the ground up, what would she be like?
-What are you, as a girl, looking for in video games? What attracts you to games? Seeing previews and such from an upcoming game, what are the big things that set it apart and make you think, "That's a game for me." Similarly, what detracts you from games, and really puts you off?

-What are your experiences with girl gamers? Do you know many, or not so much? What are these girls like, and what sort of games do they play?
-What is your opinion, as a guy, on these highly sexualized women as seen in games such as: Tomb Raider, Bayonetta, WET, et. al.? Anything where the lady is... uh... "gratuitously proportionalized," if you will. Or scantly clad. Either/or.
-What are some positive females that you have seen in video games, or in the video game industry? And (maybe, if you're daring!) if you could create a female character, what would she be like? Try your best to describe her.

Tags: credits, extra, feminism, feminist, games, girls, video, women

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I am certainly not a casual gamer. Occasionally I may play... who am I kidding, I never play especially casual games.

Boys SURPRISINGLY treat me fine. Like, really, I was scared at first to say I was a girl online, but when I did they were like, 'Really? Cool.' In the real world, boys kinda stare at me for a minute, then quiz me on gaming stuff to prove myself. :P

You know, I never really payed attention to those female characters. I just generally don't find those games interesting, but if you give me the controller, I'll play. I just might not buy it. To be honest, I really don't mind, which I know may sound odd. If that's what boys want, then that's what they want, I won't get in the way. Would I prefer to have more... realistic female characters? Yeah, but it's not really a big deal to me. 

Oh, I look for action, mainly. Which is odd, seeing as I started playing when I was 5 at Pokemon. Not the most actiony game. Usually games like Halo look awesome because of the plot, because the graphics could be great but the story could be awful. And Portal, because it just seems like fun. Not much really puts me off, but generally I hate robots in videogames. (Which doesn't include Portal. At all. Because it's like my favorite game ever.)

What are your experiences with girl gamers? Do you know many, or not so much? What are these girls like, and what sort of games do they play?


Most of the girls I know who play games (including my Fiancee) play the classic girl games. Mainly the Sims.


What is your opinion, as a guy, on these highly sexualized women as seen in games such as: Tomb Raider, Bayonetta, WET, et. al.? Anything where the lady is... uh... "gratuitously proportionalized," if you will. Or scantly clad. Either/or.


Get rid. It's exploitative and dull and doesn't really get us anywhere in any sense of the word. 


What are some positive females that you have seen in video games, or in the video game industry? And (maybe, if you're daring!) if you could create a female character, what would she be like? Try your best to describe her.


In elite force (the Star Trek Voyager games) there were a few well considered female roles there, and also again in the Star Wars games, there are several female Jedi. And of course, there's Portal's Chell...


It's exploitative


Exploitative of whom, exactly?  I didn't realize clusters of pixels could be exploited.

I didn't watch the video, the voice really annoyed me. I couldn't make it past 30 seconds so I hope it wasn't a requirement. 


- My experience dictates that women usually enjoy playing games like Sims or games made by Nintendo more than anything else. 


- I dunno, I don't care. Whatever sells product I guess but usually if any form of media relies on sexualizing people it's either really crappy or it might be awesome if it just adds the sexy ladies on top of extreme violence and excessive drinking and doesn't make the girls the primary focus. It is a video game right, not a porno, the main purpose of playing it isn't to have a wank its to play a game. You can't do both, successfully, so I would care less about the girls, they're not even real so it's not like they're that interesting. They can look good but real women look better so I'll jerk off to that. I also prefer it when the women have less awkwardly large tits. Especially when they're fighting, it also bothers me when characters in video games look weak and they can like destroy somebody with one punch. Too unbelievable. 


- Girl in Portal was positive I suppose, as was the hologram in Halo, I really don't know. I like video games but I don't have the 50 bucks to spend very often. I can't even think of that many positive males really. I suppose I would love to play a game where the female lead was in a bikini but she had unrealistically huge muscles. I don't know why but that would be fun. 

I don't want to watch the video, but as a gamer myself, I can clearly say that 1 or 5 out of 100 gamers that really plays for the sake of it, would be females.


Female gamers, at least in my own observation and analysis, tend to play casual but interactive online gaming, like I-Date, Audition, Steps, etc. These games that I've mentioned that encourages social interaction and a haven for those who are in need for romance.


As for the highly sensual women you are talking about, for a real gamer, it always comes second, because you want to get the piece of the action, and the experience of the gameplay. I personally, look at the female characters of the game(Morrigan, Karin, Sakura, Rin Tosaka, Noa and many more) with admiration and I have crush on them. Yeah, I admit that, and there is nothing wrong with it.


And for my final statement. Women that are the main protagonists in the game, somewhat changes the perspective, because it gives empowerment over our feminine opposite. As much as we know about gaming, 90% to 95% of the main characters revolved on a male role, and Lara Croft, Samus Aran, and many other feminine video game characters are perhaps helping to "level" the playing field.


That's my personal thoughts, as a gamer, and as a man. I hope our fellow female nerdfighters won't hate me for this. That is all.

I'm not a giant gamer or anything, but I've never touched a Bejeweled unless my grandmother needed a challenger. I play mostly games such as: Resident Evil, Assassin's Creed, Portal, Ratchet and Clank, Kingdom Hearts, Castlevania, Champions of Norath, and movie adapatation crap. I consider myself to be my hight with the boys, my shoulder just below theirs. Nope, no girl gamer friends, unfortunately.

Well, I really only game with my dad, so I'm treated fine. Except we argue about 'who fucked up the mission' a lot. xD

I've never been overly bothered by the sexualization of women, but this is probably due to the fact that I don't play many over sexualized games. The worst I've played were Tomb Raider and Castlevania..okay, and Champions of Norath. However, I do find it to be quite degrading. Although I don't mind much, I understand that most women get pretty pissed about it, and I don't blame them.

Positive female figures: Kingdom Hearts girls, Schell(did I spell that right? Anyways, the Portal chick). Designing a character, she would have a good figure, but keep it in reasonable clothes. Say, shorts, bulky boots, and a long-sleeved shirt. Conservative but sexy.Her face/expression is courageous, not cute or seductive.  She'd be the type who doesn't take anyone's shit and kicks your ass if she doesn't like you; strong. She could possibly have a love interest, but that's reduced to secondary plot. And she won't let people fight for her. She can be seductive, but won't give in. Maybe her clothes will be torn occasionally for the guys, maybe she gets a romantic scene sometimes for the girls.

Well, what attracts me to games is always a good plot(although it's not so easy to fing -.-'). Second, I look for either a strong, bad ass femal protagonist, or a bad-ass, yet personally kind, male character, who also happens to provide some eye candy. XD I also look for non-human/animal hybrid characters a lot. Alas, as a girl, I cannot resist the urge to run around killing things as a furry. And things that turn me away are: Military plots. Always. Especially shooting games. Games where the main girl is always a love interest in need of protection; especially if she can't fight or has sucky skills. As for appearance: Overly muscley/war-type men, the super-sexy women, and armor. Like, medeival armor, Halo armor, whatever. armor just isn't appealing.

Speaking as a former gamer (right now with college and everything I can neither afford to play games or spend a significant amount of time on them), I'll tell you about the observations I've made.

As a girl gamer, I would play basically anything with the exception of war games.  This is mostly due to the fact that I am a pacifist, and I didn't want to support anything relating to war (although I will say I've played a few historical first-person shooters because, well, they're historical).  This is not to say I wouldn't play shooter games in general, especially those taking place in outer space where humans aren't the ones being shot at.  I particularly liked the games with a good storyline, because otherwise they would become boring if every level were the same.  I'd like to say I was on the same level as my guy friends, but many of them, under the guise of being real gamers, in fact only owned maybe 3 games, all of which were part of the Call of Duty series.  So I was on the level of those who would try any type of game.  I watched G4 and kept up on the gaming news for new features and consoles and everything.  I don't know many other girl gamers because now that there are all these CoD guys, I think lots of girls are intimidated.  If a girl says she has a gamertag, guys will immediately ask "Oh, so you play CoD?"  I think we need to take a step back from that and consider maybe she wants to play whatever she wants to play.  

In my childhood, I was pretty much the only girl I knew who had a real love for video games; most of my good friends were guys and that's what we would do when we went to each other's houses.  But I was welcomed into the gaming culture because it was obvious I wanted to embrace it.  I'm of the opinion that girls should just go for it and jump into the culture; even though you might feel uncomfortable at first, if you prove your worth, guys will respect you for it.

The highly sexualised women are an unfortunate part of the culture which made me shy away firstly from any E3 coverage because of the "booth babes" and secondly from the games which showed scantily clad women.  No matter which genre of game, almost all of the women are "well endowed".  And I have no problem with that, as long as the character's personality has some depth.  I just try to ignore it; some guys appreciate it, and I just let it be.  But when they try to make the female characters into objects that have no personality and merely exist in the game for your pleasure, that's when I take offence.

Positive female figures in video games... I would say Chell and Samus are some good examples.  I know for a fact that some of my guy friends did not even realise that these characters were female until they played the games because no one really emphasised the fact that they were girls.  It shouldn't make a difference to the gameplay (or the camera angles...) whether the character is male or female; they should have more equal representation as the gaming culture evolves.

My main suggestion to get girls interested in gaming is this (meaning only step 1, to get their attention).  Instead of trying to create the ideal female character that's all independent and strong (because a: it's been done before to no avail and b: we know she's just going to end up being part of the fanservice for the dudes no matter what), let's change the storylines a bit.  Make it actiony, with a variety of characters (maybe even better, a choice of protagonist?).  This is one thing you'll need.  The social aspect combined with an adventure platform would be a plus.  Also, this is just from my experience seeing what girls like to fangirl over, add in a gay male couple.  I kid you not, this is the key to success.  Don't make it blatantly obvious until you get towards the end of the storyline, just hint at it subtly.  Lastly, add in a thinking component.  I'm not talking about those annoying-as-hell "action" games that end up being a giant round of Bejeweled, I mean add a sort of mystery or complicated situation (maybe the aforementioned gay romance starts to reach a rough point?) to balance out if it has shooting and violence.  These are just things that I've noticed that would most likely be a plus to introductory female gamers.

Yes. Yes yes yes yes. A variety of characters is always a plus, with the exception of Portal. (Of course, it could be argued that the cores are characters, but we don't see them much or hear them much, do we?) And as for a gay male couple? BRILLIANCE. That's pretty much genius right there. The second one girl plays it and finishes it, she goes and fangirls to her friends, who get excited and buy the game, and tell their friends... not to say this would instantly make them gamers, but it would certainly open their eyes to more games.

Genius! The gay couple is absolutely genius! *facepalm* I can't beleive I didn't think of that. Could you imagine the hordes of yaoi fangirls flocking to that game? I mean, that could simultaneously introduce a flock of females in general to the gaming world, but deepen all the otaku girls that are hopped up on FF and Kingdom Hearts slash as well.

Also, variety of characters is always a bonus! Although, I only ever encountered it in fantasy RPGs or versus games, which tend to get boring over time. It definitely needs to be expanded upon. The only time I've encountered it done well was in the Kingdom Hearts game Birth By Sleep, in which you choose to live through the story of either the girl character, the bad boy, or the cute one voiced by Jesse McCartney(wow... until posting this, I never realized how girl-centric the game seemed...). And it was great, but I'd like to see more of it, and more characters to choose from. Aqua was cool, but she really isn't the type of girl I want to play in a video game. Too... 'goody'.

Although, I'm forced to think about the awful truth that A) Game companies usually don't have enough funding to create different pathways for you to choose from, and B) There will be a child concern riot like never before. TT^TT

The child concern riot could always be prevented by game ratings and warnings, although, now that I think about it, not many people pay attention to those, do they? My friend Adam was buying games rated M when we were 8. :P

Nope, not at all. My dad had me playing T+ rated videogames before I could write(seriously). And I'm still not supposed to play those! XD


I'm in between a casual gamer and a "boy-ish" gamer. I play casual games, but I also play the main line kind of stuff. Halo, Portal, FF and all that.

I actually don't play online much. It's just mostly because I'm shy and I feel awkward playing with people I don't know (yeah, it's weird). But, I do play with my brother's friends. At first they were kind of like, "You like video games???", but now it's just a regular thing for them. They don't seem to care either way.

Honestly, I don't care about the perception of females in games. It doesn't take away from the gaming experience. Who cares? I actually don't think about it at all.

Like I said, I don't think about it so I don't really know. Umm... Shell (Portal)?

Hmm... Well, one: I started playing video games when I was seven or something, so I love the old stuff (that's not always common in my generation). Also, I'm a stickler for good graphics. If I see someone playing a more recent game that doesn't have good graphics... just, no. Other than that, it has to have good game play and it has to be somewhat original. I know there's no such thing as original anymore, but whatever. Also, if it seems like the game has a good plot I always have to check it out. On that casual side, I like puzzle games, like Bejeweled. And what is Minecraft classified as? Because I love Minecraft. What turns me off is bad graphics, awful plot, not following the story well if it was a book or movie made into a game (Force Unleashed 2. What the fuck was that?!). Game play wise, I just don't like difficult controlling. It just makes the game less enjoyable.


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