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2010-07-28 01:19 pm (UTC)
I play mostly female characters. I might play one or two males in DA, for example, opposed to my at least 9 female characters. Never saw the point of playing a male Shepard, since the characters are pretty much the same in either gender. I tend to stay away from RPG games (adventures and the like are just different) if they do not offer female player characters, except if they are just that good.
It doesn't go for just games either: when I look at my bookcase, a majority of them have female lead characters, or if they have a cast of main chars, several of them are female. Most of the cover art depicts females in ways that are not meant to market to men.
Yes, Bioware has been better about a lot of stuff like this than many other developers, that doesn't mean they're good enough. I appreciate what they've done so far but that doesn't give them a pass for the future, or the right not to be criticised on what they should improve. I never go to discuss anything remotely serious on the Bioware forums, because I think the place is a cesspool where I'm not willing to stick my head out. I usually send them suggestions or criticism through the e-mail form on the EA support site. They always tell me they have sent my mail to the appropriate Bioware department, which I hope is true. Recently it's been mostly criticism of their treatment of disabled characters in their games.
We're all constantly asked to identify with male characters in the (cover) art, the game, or both. Females depicted are usually NPCs. And well, I have to say I have no problem with identifying with a male character, even if it's not my first choice for a playthrough. What I wonder then though, is why they use the excuse of needing a figure in the art that people can identify with ("and the majority of our gamers are male!"). What, the boys can't identify with a female character? Why the **** not? They don't do anyone any credit here, none of their fans of any gender. They´re perfectly willing to ask quite a lot of people (minority here is still a sizable number of players) to identify with a character of a different gender than their own, but they won't ask it of any males, because it might cost them in sales? They're concerned maybe that men will think they can only play female characters? They don't seem to think it's a big deal when it seems like you can only play male characters. They don't trust that their game is good enough that people will want to play it even if they cannot play their own gender (or it seems that way from marketing)?
They really don't get how and why it would be so nice to finally see a female hero centered on cover art and marketing (that is not just there for the boobs and hotpants)? I realise sales are important but I have to admit I'm disappointed that they are more important than this.
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