Now that Donna’s announced us, we’re fit to TAKE OVER THE BL– I mean, introduce ourselves. I suppose that’s in order, isn’t it?
I’m Amanda. I turn thirty-two next week, (April 6th, exactly!) and I am a woman who has gamed since the Nintendo was widely accessible in homes. I have gamed all of my life. I have gamed with pencil and paper and I have gamed with and without dice. I have gamed with cards, books, discs, code wheels. You name it, I’ve at least handled it before if not played it once or twice. I might not have owned a copy, but I probably knew someone who did.
Right now I’ve got a PC set for mid-range gaming (with a new 5770 ATI Card shipping in to replace my old NVidia 8800 GT), a PS3, a Wii and A DS Lite, as well as an iPhone that I occasionally putter around on with a game or two when I don’t have anything better at hand.
More importantly I’m an avid tabletop gamer and that colors the sort of games I play. I enjoy RPGs, MMOs of many flavors (though currently I only play WoW). I’ve been rolling the dice since I was twelve, and there’s just no going back. I currently game with one group, though I had another that has gone on hiatus due to the recent marriage of our illustrious Dungeon Master, though apparently there are no plans to resume. I play in two campaigns currently; my husband’s Shadowrun game (Orc Shamans of wolf, represent) and in a friend’s D&D 3.5 Iron Kingdom’s game, wherein I play a young Paladin of Menoth (old faith, not the crazy new agers out in the desert) that alternate weekends.
I’m also a full time employed person type thing, and my business is something that people hate so I’m not going into the specifics. Rest assured, if I had to call you, it wasn’t a call you wanted most of the time. I am married and have only been married seven months (as of yesterday, actually) and my wonderful husband shares my gaming passion. I’m also an avid reader of both print and comics, love to write, and enjoy a passion for cooking! My posts will likely cover whatever game gripe or glory I have at the time, posts on the RPG of the hour, tabletop gaming politics and etiquette, and what married gamers are like between the dice and the consoles.
Also, I have cats. They may guest write. You never know.
Is there such a thing as girl tech? If you watch much children’s tv you’ll find that there is. Finally the electronics market is figuring out that there is a market for girls and women using gadgets.
For the young teen girl you’ll find such things as electronic diaries and pink handheld consoles. For adult women you’ll find more pink phones than you can shake a stick at and small bits of electronics made for the small hand of a woman.
Games are no different either. As computer and console gaming becomes more and more popular the games comapnies are finding that the female demographic is something they can cash in on.
I have yet to decide if I should feel flattered or insulted. Just why do I need special attention after all? I admit though that I’m a special case. The micro-PC I’m typing this on right now isn’t something you’d find marketed at women, but maybe it should be.
Most women have very specific tastes in games and gadgets. The gore and violence of a lot of games isn’t something that all women are necessarily interested in and games companies know this.
Take for example online games. Historically playing online games and MMOs was primarily something that male gamers participated in. Times are changing though. In the mainstream online games you’ll find more females playing than you would have even 5 years ago.
So the question that bears asking is this; what changed?
Well the most obvious answer to me is that technology has changed. As it has developed it has become easier to understand the basics. Pretty much anyone can handle the basics of using a mobile phone or a PC. These aren’t degree needing things anymore, they’re simple.
As technology has become easier to understand it has also become a lot more accessible. More people have snazzy PDAs, mobile phones and personal computers. How would some of us live without our portable media devices?
So easier to understand and more accessible technology. Well it was inevitable that women would start delving into the land of boy’s toys. So here we are.
The other reason is a little more slippery. Marketing plays an interesting part in all of this too. Recently on UK T.V. Nintendo have been running a commercial that is aimed very directly at girls.
This direct marketing isn’t seen for boys. You don’t see a commercial that says “Games that boys like” at the end of it. Maybe there should be.
I’m not offended or upset by this direct marketing. What annoys me slightly is how they’re going about it. The DS has found its way into a lot of girls’ hands. It’s small and interesting and has a very good spread of games. Because of this large game catalogue I think it has become more interesting to females, not anything to do with the marketing.
Really I’m just pondering and wondering here. The age of Barbie is gone, there’s no need to market to us like we’re still in the 50s. So why is technology and games being directed at us like it still is?