I’m sure most, if not all, of you have encountered situations like these at some point in your gaming career. The worst part of this is that this type of behavior isn’t restricted to in-game chat only, but can also be seen on social media sites, such as Twitter. At what point will gamers be accepted across all boards, regardless of gender?
Now the boys/men who say these things cannot be blamed 100% for this problem. The fact that in most games female characters are rarely portrayed as strong, personable characters, but instead as sexual objects, reinforces this ignorant point of view. In fact, when you search for a list of female characters in video games you will most likely encounter top 10 sexiest lists more than anything else. Male characters are represented in almost the exact opposite way. Sure, we have our Chris Redfield’s of the gaming world that are very pleasing to the female eye, but even characters like these have more depth to their character than their female counterparts.
And then comes along the girls who reinforce, and even crave, this sort of attention by proclaiming to anyone who will listen that they are a ‘girl gamer’. Congrats, would you like a cookie? Emphasizing that you are a girl that does something that is supposed to be a ‘boy hobby’ is a great way lose respect for not only yourself, but your fellow gamers who happen to be female. And while we’re on the subject, there has been a contest recently to find the ‘Maxim Gamer Girl’. Personally, I wouldn’t want to be known in the gaming world simply because I have boobs and a hot body. Morgan Webb and Felicia Day are both well-known and respected in the gaming industry. And imagine this; they did it through hard work and creativity! Amazing!
In order for equality to be achieved there must be a change in the way girls that game are perceived. They shouldn’t be treated as some rare commodity, but instead as a normal gamer, because they are, after all, just gamers. Until that happens, the ‘fem sheps’ and Alyx Vance’s of the gaming world must continue to bring respect and equality to female gamers and fight the good fight!