As a man, whenever someone mentions feminism I reply with a bemused “oh that thing from the sixties?” – then I get back to wrestling bears and bench pressing an assortment of vehicles. You know, manly things that men do. Now don’t get me wrong, you ladies are great. I’m all for empowerment and equal wages and the such. Just don’t expect me to understand or care about feminism as a movement. I’ll be honest, I don’t care. It’s got nothing to do with me.
Therein though lies our problem. Within the games industry the majority of directors, producers and writers are men. It is still very much a male dominated area, some of them intent on creating the power fantasies of their teenage years. So right now, there probably aren’t that many people within this industry that understand the concept of feminism either. Just look at the majority of female characters in games. They’re busty babes that serve as a goal, i.e. save the princess, or eye candy in revealing armour that in no universe would be effective in protecting all of your vital parts. Developers can barely get your standard female character right, never mind tackling something like feminism, or portraying women as actual people. Samus Aran is perhaps one of the best known heroines in the biz, but that didn’t stop Metroid Other M trying its best to ruin everything about her.
I’m not saying women’s “stuff” shouldn’t be tackled in videogames, it’s just that we should probably wait until there are more women in the industry and for it to mature a bit further. If we don’t then we all know it’ll inevitably end in a wet t-shirt contest.
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This article was first posted on July 24, 2012