Last time, I went on a rant about how guy gamers seem to let their machismo from letting girl gamers into their world. Well, I’m sorry. But I’m going on another rant again. Now I’m questioning why there are very few girls protagonists in video games.
I’m not saying there aren’t. There’s Lara Croft of Tomb Raider, Samus Aran from Metroid, Chell from the Portal games… you see, it’s kinda hard for me to think of more of the top of my head. There are more but, while I’m writing this, It’s difficult for me to just rattle off other names.
Oh, I’d like to consider the ladies of Resident Evil but it’s usually the guys that get all the glory. In Resident Evil 6, besides Ada Wong, the chapters are named after the males, not the females. I also wish I could include FemShep of Mass Effect (God knows I love my FemShep!) but you know what? Only 18% of gamers used FemShep!
I know there are some guys that make girl characters (for reasons I can only guess… which I actually did before!) but I assume they usually do this for their second run through the game. For their first time playing, they probably start out with a male character when given a choice.
Look, I’m not a radical feminist who is screaming for equal rights for female representation in video games. I’m not. I just don’t like the idea that games with girl characters don’t sell well. But a lot of people think so.
Apparently, even simply putting a girl on the cover can lead to poor sales. I remember the creative director of Ken Levine saying that they moved Elizabeth to the back of Bioshock Infinite’s cover was because they asked frat boys what they wanted to see… and apparently seeing girls on the front cover wasn’t one of them. So, even though Elizabeth (the girl in Bioshock Infinite) was one of the reasons the game was so good, she was relocated to the back while Booker DeWitt was the one prominently shown on the front.
It’s this kind of thinking that bothers me somewhat. I’m a girl and I’m not bothered by playing a male character; I just choose to play as a girl character as much as possible since there aren’t many females you can control in video games. I just like (and hope) to think that guys are not so immature to think that playing as a girl character makes them less of a man. It just means that you like to play a great game that just so happens to have a female as the main character.
Speaking of main characters, I often wonder what makes a good one. I’ll give you my thoughts on that next time!
Are there other games out there that have a female as the protagonist that I missed out? Do you think having a girl as the main character will make people not buy the game? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below!