How many gamers are actually female? - No, mobile games do not make you a gamer (unless your using an emulator such as Drastic).

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Guardian G.I.

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My observations:
Although there is hardly any severe gamer gatekeeping bullshit here, many girls simply aren't interested in video games. Besides stereotypical girly stuff and games like The Sims, those who are interested often play racing games like Need for Speed and open world games like GTA. Some play first person shooters, including multiplayer stuff like Counter-Strike, but there aren't many of them.

Almost everyone regardless of gender has a PC here, and these are often sold with 'gamer' hardware by default. Consoles are extremely expensive and extremely rare.

EDIT: I'm talking about the place I live in - post-Soviet Eastern Europe.
 
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Erida

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It honestly doesn't help that since the 80s, video game companies have been targeting the male demographics than the female. It's gradually diminished since then, but back then for like NES and the like, it was like 100% boys only clubs, at least according to the ones selling it.
And if a game for girls was released, it wasn't neutral so everyone could like it, but 'overly' girly, like Barbie or shit like that, which didn't help either.

I half agree. I do think girls were dismissed from the business side of things but that's marketing for you - appeal to the boys hard, get sales. My girl friends back then lost interest in favour of boy bands, boys in general, fashion, beauty, hanging out with friends and more likely to pick books/movies/tv. I'm sure there's exceptions but I imagine a lot of gamer ladies from my generation (and younger) were the types who didn't get in to all those 'girly' interests. I would've picked an afternoon on the SNES over the torture of four hours in a shopping mall with friends.

There were a lot of gender neutral games though (as in not "grrr I'm a man, let me shoot stuff!" titles). Disney were releasing games - inc Aladdin, Castle of Illusion, Lucky Dime Caper. Plus Sonic and Mario titles. Monkey Island is another that comes to mind.

I wonder if it's something going on in the brain, as opposed to just the marketing and games themselves, because many girls often lose interest in sport too. Almost every single game and sport has a challenge/reward motivation. You beat that boss fight, win the race, kick the other teams arse, finally get some cool loot etc. Perhaps that 'excites' the brain more in men (and some chicks) more than most women... Or I'm chatting shit and thinking about it too much!
 

TiggerNits

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My wife plays Rocket League, GTA and Mario Kart when the kid is napping and she needs to unwind. My 35 year old sister and her husband play a lot of Madden online, she used to be big in to the Command and Conquer series. My youngest sister (21) is a big mobile game player, but does have a 3DS she keeps just for Animal Crossing and Paper Mario as far as I can tell. My secretary plays CS:GO and the new Rainbow Six, my book keeper is in her 40s and has a Zelda tattoo. My sister in law is a Baldur's Gate fan and plays a lot of Splatoon with her kids.

Man, Nintendo makes a lot of money off of chicks
 

John Titor

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I know several. My sister will play the occasional RPG but given the opportunity, she will play on easy modo.
 

Dunsparce

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A real gamer grill:

ps3grill.jpg
 

Ntwadumela

That takes care of the cremation..
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I'm meeting more and more women who play video games actually, like fucking Uncharted and The Last of Us for example.

In fact my older sister, younger brother and I would kick ass at Tekken and even Mortal Kombat/Injustice ( I don't play the latter two).

That being said I think it's gaining a foothold during this century, especially since there's a rise in female protagonists (and well-made ones too might I add).
 

Roast Chicken

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I wonder if it's something going on in the brain, as opposed to just the marketing and games themselves, because many girls often lose interest in sport too. Almost every single game and sport has a challenge/reward motivation. You beat that boss fight, win the race, kick the other teams arse, finally get some cool loot etc. Perhaps that 'excites' the brain more in men (and some chicks) more than most women... Or I'm chatting shit and thinking about it too much!

I think I've experienced this to some extent, though I still play a lot of games, albeit easy ones where I can chill out but still fill some mild accomplishment when I complete a quest or get an achievement. I wasn't always disinterested in challenging games, though.

As a child I remember being thoroughly engrossed in the Lion King game and Aladdin game which my dad would bring home on floppy disks when I was little; would spend ages trying to complete the levels (never got past the Elephant Graveyard).

But as I grew into my teens and adulthood I found myself being less drawn to games where I'd spend hours having to die repeatedly before I accomplished a task; I think you're right about the sense of reward not being as strong in women.

That is not to put everyone in the same basket however, genetics are not definite and there are always exceptions. Lonely, outnumbered exceptions...
 

AnOminous

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I think you're right about the sense of reward not being as strong in women.

Is this an actual girl? She sure sounds like a girl.

There are three kinds of female "gamers." Actually, the first two aren't gamers. They're just GOTIS types who want to get attention by going "tee hee I'm a girl" in games. These are the awful people nobody wants around.

Then there are actual game players who just happen to be female and often don't even admit that online (because of the inevitable sexual harassment by horny 12 year olds).

Sometimes, actual gamers who just happen to be women adopt healer roles and other support roles. However, just as often, these women gamers tank the fuck out and are just as good at that as males.

However, the hostility to "female gamers" has more to do with the "tee hee hee pay attention to me because I'm a gurl" crowd than it does to some inherent misogyny. I've never seen an MMORPG raiding team refuse to admit someone because they're female when they were otherwise obviously qualified. That shit doesn't happen.
 

ADN_VIII

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I've been playing a lot of The Old Republic lately, and I notice that female players are maybe one in four. It seems to me that the ones who admit to being girls will only do so in the privacy of guild and group chats because of the thirsty squeakers. I run a 50/50 mix of male and female characters and I can say with certainty that there are a lot of colorful messages sent to female characters than male.
 

Dysnomia

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I once heard that the figure is more like 15%-20% and in my experience that's about right.

You're probably right. Everyone and their dog tends to fiddle around with stupid time waster mobile games anyway. Playing Candy Crush or Angry Birds while being stuck as the 57th person in line at the only open checkout in Walmart doesn't make you a gamer. Being a gamer to me means you are devoted to the hobby and the culture that surrounds it. It's like a guy who buys a midlife crisis Harley and just polishes it in the garage. He's not a biker. He just fancies himself as one.

So you've got all these women who don't really like games much saying there should be a way to skip combat or that female characters need to be covered up because "muh male gaze rape culture". Most of the ones I see like that usually just gush over the most popular current AAA's and whatever flavor of the month indie game is hot on Twitch. That's kind of suspect to me. Because they don't seem to know much about games in general. Just whatever gets the most attention on Tumblr or whatever. It seems most of the fandom tumblrs are run by girls and it's less about the games and more about terrible headcanons. I don't buy that those girls are gamers. They're just in it for the attention. Playing popular games is a chance to get themselves popular.

It honestly doesn't help that since the 80s, video game companies have been targeting the male demographics than the female. It's gradually diminished since then, but back then for like NES and the like, it was like 100% boys only clubs, at least according to the ones selling it.
And if a game for girls was released, it wasn't neutral so everyone could like it, but 'overly' girly, like Barbie or shit like that, which didn't help either.

I didn't even notice this until years later when I saw people like Anita talking about it. I always found it weird that more girls weren't into games. Because I was and I just couldn't fathom why you'd not like them when I was a kid. Honestly, I still don't get it. But most of my friends were boys and I was the big gamer of the group. I think that perspective blinded me to who exactly was being marketed to. I just didn't think about it. Since I was gaming more than my male friends and had very few female friends to compare myself to I ended up just not seeing it that way at all.
 

Pangoro

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I'd say that the 15-20% figure somebody mentioned earlier about lines up with my own experiences - with the exception of :autism: stuff like competitive Pokemon. Something about that makes it overwhelmingly more appealing to men than women... and the same goes for most competitive video games, in my experience. About the only people I know who seem to -care- about this massive disconnect are the extreme "Hey I'm a girl and I play video games, don't hit on me silly boys" types; as opposed to women who actually play and enjoy games at a comp. level.

So you've got all these women who don't really like games much saying there should be a way to skip combat or that female characters need to be covered up because "muh male gaze rape culture". Most of the ones I see like that usually just gush over the most popular current AAA's and whatever flavor of the month indie game is hot on Twitch. That's kind of suspect to me. Because they don't seem to know much about games in general. Just whatever gets the most attention on Tumblr or whatever. It seems most of the fandom tumblrs are run by girls and it's less about the games and more about terrible headcanons. I don't buy that those girls are gamers. They're just in it for the attention. Playing popular games is a chance to get themselves popular.

In regards to fandom tumblrs, all I have to say is - when a danganronpa tumblr polled its viewerbase of multiple thousands of people, only something like 10% had played the actual danganronpa video games, and only a slightly larger percentage had watched the (awful) anime adaptation. Granted, danganronpa was, until recently, only available in the west on the PlayStation Vita, a console less than 5 million people outside of Japan own, but I imagine the actual numbers reflect on other gaming tumblr fandoms, given the sheer ignorance some of them exhibit.
 

Erida

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Sometimes, actual gamers who just happen to be women adopt healer roles and other support roles. However, just as often, these women gamers tank the fuck out and are just as good at that as males.

As I think I already mentioned, Overwatch is where I see the most women online (judging purely on gamertags). I've seen them play as all character types and I personally have a few mains depending on what the team needs and what I'm in the mood for. That said, I think I have the highest playtime on Mercy, which plays into the 'women favour healers' thing. Often it's purely because we need a healer as opposed to "I must be my waifu!".

It's not because it's 'easy' either. I have male friends who really struggle to play her well, as a good Mercy has to constantly watch where her team are, who needs help, who to favour when everyone's getting fucked up, plus where the opposition are to avoid dying. I don't get the satisfaction of many kills but I guess it's a strong (maternal?) instinct to look after my team. A simple "thank you" in return for helping a teammate gives me the warm-fuzzies. I'm sure there's many men who enjoy playing healer too but the ones I know favour Zenyatta (who can also be a game-changer if played well).

As for the GOTIS gamer girls, I don't encounter them (unless cringing at YouTube compilations) or know any. Again, it's probably a 'younger crowd' thing. It means I don't have strong opinions on them but I have had to 'prove' I'm an actual gamer several times during the occasional encounters in game shops/cons etc. I mostly stay with my group of friends when gaming, in private chat, and I think that's what many 'women who happen to be gamers' do.
 

Octopuff in kumquat

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Most of my female friends say they almost always disguise themselves as boys, unless playing in a closed off community with one another.

Can't say I really blame them, with the attitude towards women gaming or just the thirst. But it makes actual percentages, at least in my experience, very hard to gauge on sight alone. An "avatar" doesn't mean anything.
 

Dysnomia

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As I think I already mentioned, Overwatch is where I see the most women online (judging purely on gamertags). I've seen them play as all character types and I personally have a few mains depending on what the team needs and what I'm in the mood for. That said, I think I have the highest playtime on Mercy, which plays into the 'women favour healers' thing. Often it's purely because we need a healer as opposed to "I must be my waifu!".

It's not because it's 'easy' either. I have male friends who really struggle to play her well, as a good Mercy has to constantly watch where her team are, who needs help, who to favour when everyone's getting fucked up, plus where the opposition are to avoid dying. I don't get the satisfaction of many kills but I guess it's a strong (maternal?) instinct to look after my team. A simple "thank you" in return for helping a teammate gives me the warm-fuzzies. I'm sure there's many men who enjoy playing healer too but the ones I know favour Zenyatta (who can also be a game-changer if played well).

As for the GOTIS gamer girls, I don't encounter them (unless cringing at YouTube compilations) or know any. Again, it's probably a 'younger crowd' thing. It means I don't have strong opinions on them but I have had to 'prove' I'm an actual gamer several times during the occasional encounters in game shops/cons etc. I mostly stay with my group of friends when gaming, in private chat, and I think that's what many 'women who happen to be gamers' do.

I've never played it. Well I really can't as I lack a computer that wasn't built while Fred Flintstone was still alive. Plus I have no PS4. But I hear a lot of people complain that all girls want to play as is Mercy. Someone on GameFAQs mentioned that the complaints are due to guys not wanting 3DPG playing their waifus. But the only alternative is it's a guy playing. Yeah I know that post was a joke. Or I hope it was. But it still seems dumb to suggest.

I see a lot of Tracer fans on Tumblr who say they haven't played the game. But I think that has to do 100% with her being a lesbian.

I can only think of one time I got the " wow a girl can play games" thing. And that's when I was playing Alien vs. Predator and attracted a small crowd. I think because I understand the technical aspect a bit and mess around with codes and mainly focus on old games I get a pass about being a "real gamer" because fans of that stuff are older and more mellow. Plus that type of circle tends to be small and desperate for newcomers. There's usually no one to talk to about some 30 year old Japanese game no one has ever heard of. But if I started playing new AAA's heavily I imagine I'd get the same nonsense you go through.

It does seem that many girls prefer healers. Just like you see more female nurses and teachers. So there's probably some biological aspect to this. I prefer straight up magic. At least partially offensive. But a lo of girls pick mage types too. It's not always less aggressive but you tend to need protection from stronger characters plus many mage classes have buffs. So there's still that nurturing aspect even if you may not always get healing powers. You can at least shield your friends or speed them up ect...
 

Fox

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The question I wanna ask though is, why does it matter? Does it mean anything aside from gender politics?
"Gamer" is just a label, anyone can call themselves a gamer, for whatever reason they want. Does it effect marketing that much, even? I've been keeping up with gaming conferences, trailers and everything gaming related since I was a kid and I've never once though "This feels like a guys' club" or "I'm not represented enough." It's just an escapist's hobby. Gender doesn't matter in it.
I do think that they should stop shoving the term gamer on people who play Candy Crush that don't even wanna be called gamers.
 

Dane

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PLENTY of girls are into videogames, and I mean genuinely decent ones too, I've been friends with a couple of 'em over the years and my fiance makes a huge ordeal out of watching e3 every year. There's plenty of girls who like vidya on par with any guy, they just don't tell anyone
1. because they don't want their normie friends to make fun of them
2. to keep neckbeards from bothering them
3. to keep from being compared to grrrrrrl gamurz