Good article form Cliff Bleszinski.. yeah, they do exist, and we are glad of this.
So this article came up today.
The “GURL GAMER” debate is one that, seemingly, will never die.
EDIT: Chris Kohler pointed out that the article is calling out how silly those “rules” are. Cool. Still enjoyed talking about them. 🙂
Now, at a fundamental level I, as a man, it would seem as if I have no right to comment on this any more than the GOP has any right to comment on women’s health issues. (“What is real rape!?”, anyone? Ugh.)
I also learned that if you ever blog or have an opinion on any gender issue you’re bound to piss people off but hey, that’s the Internet.
However, there are a few touch points that are directly related to significant personal events in my life that I feel I can offer a bit of insight into. I know for a fact that my wife would have plenty to say on the subject, but she’s extremely busy questing in Guild Wars 2 right now and she doesn’t like blogging as much as I do, so I may speak for her a bit in this article.
And yes, I’m giving the original article traffic by linking to it, because the subject won’t die and I find the conflict within the female gamer community to be somewhat fascinating. (Plus it was kind of funny.)
A few points on the article and the subject.
1. This article basically calls Jessica Chobot a whore in a roundabout Fox News sort of way. Jess is a very good friend of ours and is a smart, tough woman who got to where she is with a lot of hard work and kicking and screaming. Jess used that infamous picture of her licking the PSP to gain internet infamy and then spent years proving that she’s the real deal. (It’s almost like people…came for the graphics and stayed for the gameplay!) That’s part of the problem, by the way, if you’re pretty and you play…you actually have to work EXTRA hard to prove your “nerd cred” to cynical guys.
(Also, shout out to www.fatuglyorslutty.com here.)
We’re close friends with many visible women in gaming media and technology and the amount of shit they’ve had to endure online and in real life would fill up a dozen books. You really have no idea…even going back to Killcreek. (Not my story to tell it here, but needless to say, you’d be fucking mortified.)
2. The article says that girl gamers shouldn’t announce themselves as a gamer. I disagree with this, quite simply, because this is what led me to the love of my life – my wife! The fact that my now wife exploded on the internet as a gamer was what attracted me to her. (It didn’t hurt that I found her to be beautiful, so much to the point that I held off on contacting her for quite some time because I didn’t think I had a shot.)
Here’s the thing about us Gamer Guys. We love our hobby, more than anything.
I’m going to let you in on a secret from the videogame development community. Generally speaking, there are two kinds of developer wives. There are those that game with the husband and those that the husband, deep down,wishes some day he could make a game that his wife actually plays and enjoys. (Because she doesn’t game. Some marriages are just fine this way, of course.)
3. Here’s part of the problem, and this is one that drives Lauren BONKERS. There are plenty of great females *who happen to game* now, more than ever. That’s amazing! (and that Capitalist Pig side of me that I’ve been bold enough to have shared with you says “Yay, profits!”)
However, there’s a giant rash of Fake Nerd Gurlz who are using the fact that they played Mario Kart once at a friend’s house when they were 12 as an excuse to leverage nerd and gamer culture for internet and sometimes, very real, fame. Those of you who follow my Twitter know who I’m talking about here. One fake Gamer Nerd Gurl manages to get Comic Con wrapped around her finger and BOOM next thing you know she’s living the Hollywood dream has led to a rash of these fake nerds.
There’s a reason why, in our own wedding invitations, we used the phrase “Co-op buddies for life” because it’s not just in games that we overcome adversaries, it’s also in real life. One day we may be stomping Necromorphs together and the next we may be dealing with obnoxious travel delays. In a relationship it’s important to be yourself, but it’s also important to have things that you enjoy together.
It’s not that different than the football nut who finds a companion who loves Football together. Now, every Sunday, they can both sit down and enjoy their pastime together. That’s a beautiful thing and it can really help solidify the bond between a man and a woman. Growing up with a house full of brothers who loved football and a mother who eye-rolled it it’s encouraging to go to a sports bar on a Sunday and see the girlfriends and wives rooting right along with their spouses.
Those of you who are so enraged by the different representations of females who happen to also game please understand the following, from us guys who happen to game. For so long my generation (and the generation after mine) has yearned for a companion that will play with us.
It was the Great White Buffalo for decades. (I have a fun story in my upcoming PAX East keynote about this, by the way.)
Just know that if you’re a fake nerd we’ll know within 30 seconds of playing co-op or versus with you and you’re in the FPS looking at the ground the entire time.
4. Now, just for a minute, let’s forget the girls that don’t game and hold a controller over their bits or the ones that offer to play with guys while they have cyber sex on a per minute basis. There ARE girls out there who ARE real gamers who have CHOSEN to show themselves off, say, a bit more than others.Raychul comes to mind. You can Google her and find any number of PG-13 pictures that are borderline R/NSFW. It’s her choice to show herself off in the context of gaming because it’s her right to do so. And, while some may disagree with her choice, at least she PLAYS games and knows what she’s talking about. (Whether or not the sex-ification of gaming girls is a good thing or a bad thing I’m going to leave up for debate. I’d bet Leigh Alexander could write up an article worthy of the ages on this topic!)
5. In conclusion – just like any particular demographic, it seems like there’s no one type of “girl gamer.” (Forget the fake ones, as they don’t count, we’ve known all types.) I’m talking about the real ones.
The TV hosts who game. The aspiring actresses. The models. The comedians. And the quiet blogger or community manager, or the girl who doesn’t show her face or reveal her identity as female. That’s why this is such a complicated manner for everyone to digest and deal with. The human mind LOVES to sort people into tiny little buckets (this is why, sadly, racism will always be around…) and a “girl gamer” is seemingly now a whole lot of different types of women … who happen to love to game.
We as lonely guys are just excited to finally have the chance to find a spouse who will sit down and pop heads with us on the sofa now. A spouse that knows Valve related memes and will build a castle together with us in Minecraft. A spouse that will go to PAX with you and enthusiastically play every game and excitedly meet developers.
The couple that plays together, stays together.
p.s. All of you fuckers need to lay off of Team Unicorn. They’re legit.
Author: Cliff Bleszinski
Source: Clifford Unchained