Role-playing and Gender

Role-playing and Gender

I’ve stated in the first post that I play WAR and WoW. Its now time to ‘fess up and admit I play RPGs in general. That’s right…I’m a geek. *rips off her coat to show her GEEK AND PROUD shirt* I will confess I table-top rp (multiple systems), video games (other than WoW and WAR), and I…play miniatures war games (thus why I gave WAR a chance in the first place). Now that we have gotten that little niggling confession out of the way, we should move onto the other. I’m a chick. This won’t be a large focus of the blog unless someone makes it…see the end of this post.

While female gamers are less rare than we once were; I am from the old school of being ogled when I walk into a game convention because I’m one of 4 girls and usually the other 3 are just gamer girlfriends. You know who they are, the girls who ‘role-play’ until they’ve been dating the guy awhile and suddenly it’s ‘his childish’ hobby. They will hang around every now and they but they don’t really game. (My local Games Workshop store may start thinking this of my if I don’t bring my Witch Hunters army to play one day…its became like Duke Nukem. Myth and Legend but nothing more)

I recently got into contact with two long time buddies I’ve been doing online gaming with for years. They reminded me of an online community we were a part of that was rocked when two different players had led people on to believe they were girls IRL as well as in the game. There was a lot of shock and anger. This community was a close knit group and was shocked by it. Did it really matter that it was a guy playing it? Ultimately, no. But it was a lie propagated by a truth, at least at that particular time, which was girl gamers were given more privileges than the guys. So, these two people lied about who they were IRL to get in game favors from other players and the admin of the little community.

People laugh these days when I tell them that story. I can’t tell you how many friends tell me they assume I’m a guy until we get on vent and they realize I’m a girl. The perception and attitudes of gender are changing in the online gaming community. I, for one, am very pleased with these changes. With the influx of females gaming, there comes a balance and a sense of equality. Just because I’m a female gamer doesn’t mean I can’t farm my own mats and need your help. There was sense back in the days of EQ that we weren’t as good at killing and so we needed help with the game.

Why is any of this important? Perception is reality. Because I know I’m a girl gamer and have historically been in the minority of my gaming community I’ve adopted a simple rule for interacting with the virtual world of gaming and avatars.

Toon gender = your gender

So when you are on a girl character you are a girl etc. Why? Because unless you are on Vent its just easier for me. I know there could be a guy behind the screen. A few of my RL friends will only play girl characters. For perhaps the best reason ever, the models look better and if they are going to be stuck staring at this character for potentially years its not going to be an ugly elf with a stupid scowl all the time

Why this post in the first place if perceptions are changing? Because someone had the audacity to argue with me if IRL I was a girl or not. HA! I am and I blog. Fear me *cues the spooky sounds* 😉

Published in: on December 9, 2008 at 1:00 am  Comments (1)  
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