Gaming is a hobby long dominated by men. While female gamers are becoming more common, many feel alienated by male-oriented story lines, games that objectify women and abusive online players.
While first person shooters above all other genres have a tendency to become masculine testosterone fests, adventure games and roleplaying games have been keeping female gamers in mind since the 1990s. Recent adventure games such as Uncharted and Assassin’s Creed have managed a fast-paced feel without any overt misogyny, and roleplaying games such as the critically acclaimed Mass Effect series, Elder Scrolls, Dragon Age and Demon Souls have all attempted to give woman gamers an equally adept female main character to play.Is this new to you? Catch up here
While strong female characters are few and far between, progress is being made as female gamers vote with their dollars. The most recent additions to the Final Fantasy series, 13 and 13-2, featured strong and uncompromising female characters that became quite popular. In a series as long-lived and entrenched in gamer culture as Final Fantasy, it can be considered a sign of the times. Even Bioware was surprised at the positive fan response that the female version of Shepard in Mass Effect received. However, the battle is not won and it is now more important than ever for female gamers to make their opinions heard.