About Time: We Discussed Women Gamers on the RiseBy Angelica Malin
For years, gaming has been subjected to sexist arguments stating that men make up the majority of the gaming population and that women are actively excluded from the past time – The Pew Research Centre’s new research is about to blow some minds, and some opinions, out of the water.
The survey discovered that not only are 48% of US gamers female but a whopping 57% of online casino users in America are female – the death of the stereotype we wonder!? Some of the best poker pros are women, and the reason cited most often by those surveyed for the female interest online is the social aspect that adds to the experience for the female gamer.
Bizarrely, many believe it is only recently that women have taken an interest in gaming and it has been source of much confrontation. However, the female gamer is not a new concept and the ladies have been plying their gaming trade for just as long as their male counterparts.
Where’s the evidence, you might be asking, and rightly so there should be something back up these bold claims – perhaps we should start with that old 3310 favourite: Snake.
At its original time of release, Snake was actually called Hustle and the developers set out on a marketing tour of America to challenge the nation to beat their two professional players. At the end of the tour, the pros had racked up 1,240 wins and seldom few losses – their names? – Sabrina and Lynn; the first professional gamers history recognises.
Even the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) had a huge female fan base and it was claimed that, in America, over 30% of those purchasing the console for their own use were female – women were commonplace at the Nintendo World Championships throughout the 1990s; what more do you need?
The issue of ‘gamer girls’ clearly stems from the Internet as various trolls and other online irritants continue to claim that girls only take an interest in video games to impress men – chauvinism all round it would seem.
As it transpires, this attitude couldn’t be less accurate as the female gaming population remains as healthy as ever despite the lack of, so called, female orientated titles. The Xbox One was launched with FIFA and Forza Motorsport – two perceived male orientated titles but who says girls can’t like football and fast cars?
Not me, that’s who. Long may the female gamers make the gaming world a better place; even if they do beat me mercilessly on many occasions.