Where Does The Myth That Only Boys Play Video Games Come From?


    Well worth mentioning that this is written by our very own Tracy Lien,
    and is a fantastic read!

      I love how she's being linked on Kotaku. It's all come full circle. Way to go, Tracey. Amazing work. The Sierra part especially appealed to the adventure game fanboy in me!

      Last edited 05/12/13 8:59 am

      Really brilliant read, and the presentation is top notch - love the layout and illustrations.

    Good article, but does anyone else think that the video of the little girl talking about toys feels a little forced? Like she was taking directions?

    I don't think people do think that only boys play video games.

    And I also think that most people use their own eyes to observe that more boys than girls tend to play games after a certain age.

      On your second point, you observe that it happens, but do you look past that at WHY? It isn't just random, and it isn't just genetics, or girls are different, or any of that. Look at what society tells girls is ok (Hint: Video games are NOT one of them, nor are most other games) and what society says is ok for boys, and what happens to either when they step over those lines (Emotional men, for instance, are constantly reprimanded to be more manly).

        I'm with you up until this:
        and what happens to either when they step over those lines (Emotional men, for instance, are constantly reprimanded to be more manly).
        I know girl gamers. No-one (in their real lives) gives them any grief about it. I know 'emotional' men - again, no-one gives them any grief about it.

        I wonder how much of the problem is people who are too willing to act in accordance with perceived pressure to modify their behaviour, even when in reality they are free to do as they wish?

          Your experience is not everyone's experience. You know people it hasn't happened to, ergo, it doesn't happen? No. It happens to others regularly and constantly, even if it doesn't happen near you specifically. It is extremely well documented in both instances. Your continued denial of things happening just because YOU don't see it isn't helping anything.

            So you say:
            Emotional men, for instance, are constantly reprimanded to be more manly
            And I say:
            I know 'emotional' men - again, no-one gives them any grief about it.
            You put a general proposition, and I simply pointed out that it is not true in every case. That is not the same thing as me taking anecdotal evidence and extrapolating to the general case - that's what you are doing, in fact.

    I'm a girl and I love playing video games but hate how few video game heroines there are

      You could try The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky. It has BOTH!!!

    I'm not sure i enjoy the tone of modern feminism. I almost always agree with a well-reasoned stance but i get a distinct feeling that there's more anger behind the cause than actual thought. It's written from the beginning as if it's a sin for anyone to create a male character. Period. It's written as if it's a sin for boys to enjoy playfighting and girls to enjoy dolls etc. There's also this constant call for strong female leads but i'd say we need strong leads in general. I dislike the lack of discourse and discussion feminists open themselves up to, with a constant excuse given that they are so horribly attacked by idiots that they can't. We all know there are ways to open yourself up for discussion without encountering these morons so i personally don't accept that. I want to discuss the issue but the only people i ever find are blindly supporting a cause they don't understand or so stupidly ignorant that it's pointless.

    I don't know, there are those rare occasions where feminism becomes hypocritical and instead of wanting equality, they want the suppression of the male voice - simply reversing the dominant role. I find it sad that the issue is considered so important that there's next to zero realistic scrutiny or anyone at least playing devil's advocate. I don't think change ever comes when every voice sounds exactly the same, when there's so much overwhelming support that's consistently overlooking contradictions, prejudice and hypocrisy. People can't just surround themselves with agreeable comforts 100% of the time. At the very least it's led to an increased stereotypical depiction of men as well. I don't disagree with a single thing in the article but its aggressive tone, i'm just disappointed that a noble stance is being sullied over time by lack of constructive scrutiny.

      Can you elaborate on those ways to open up to discussion without being attacked? Because as a trans woman, I can tell you that there is very little such thing. You are also completely wrong on most of your points. Most feminists are perfectly happy for there to be a balance, but there isn't one now, and there hasn't been in a documentably long time, and many of us ARE angry about it. Rightfully so. More, many of us get tired of going over the basics over and over and over and over again with everyone with your attitude. That lack of discourse you notice is probably because you expect to be spoonfed it. Go out, educate yourself, read what feminists are actually talking about and think, and be respectful in talking to them and your discourse will happen.

      Long screeds about how you'd enjoy feminism more if they just shut up and stopped being so /angry/? Yeah, that's probably why you don't get the discourse you are looking for.

      Holy hell, man.

      I hate to be the one who does the inevitable "check your privilege" post, but jesus... Check your privilege.

    The Article was good until the feminist tones started to rear its ugly head. A lot of the article just seems to try and pin men for catering to a male dominated area and act like women are being oppressed . Another "why aren't we be pandered to? Arghh must be evil white men!, ARghh the patriarchy is keep us down! " whine that feminists always seem to bring up left , right and center, disregarding the simple fact that if women want games to be more focused on female characters and game play catering to a female audience they will have to enter the market for themselves and start creating games , opening up more of the gaming industry to women. Getting girls into more roles within the gaming industry is the only way things will change, not just having a whine based of the feminism 101 course you did in college. Side note:
    How many feminists do you see whining to beer companies about their TV adverts only catering to a male audience ?

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