Gaming for me has always been a male-only activity. I never really imagined discussing about how I finally got past that rage-quit-inducing boss with a female friend. It just wasn’t natural. It was engrained in my mind that girls don’t associate themselves with games. That’s why when my mother used to help me solve puzzles or comment on how awesome the game I’m playing is I used to wonder how girls can even live without video games.
What was the cause behind this odd phenomenon? It couldn’t be because of the violence depicted in games as movies and TV shows can get equally gory. And to my knowledge, our culture doesn’t exactly condemn girls involved in video games. So are girls really uninterested in games or have they never really spoken out about it. I decided to interview girls I know about this. For obvious reasons, I won’t be mentioning their names.
Were you ever interested in video games?
Yes I was interested in video games, that’s back when I was 7. My dad got me a game console, probably a Nintendo. I used to play almost every day.
What games did you play in your youth? Do you cherish those memories?
Since I was too young for the tricky ones, I used to play games like Super Mario, Tetris, Bomber man, Contra and all that. As a kid, I got so addicted to them that I kept on playing even when I had homework to be finished. About a year and a half later, the console started malfunctioning, and dad never got me another because of his fear that I’ll get addicted again and probably hamper my studies.
As of now, do you find video games appealing or uninteresting and why?
Video games were always appealing to me. When I was in fourth grade, I was introduced to PC gaming by my cousin. Roadrash, Virtual Cop, DX-Ball, House of the Dead were few of the games I remember playing frequently. Once again I got into it. And one day, when exams were near, I just deleted all of them off my pc and I never touched games again in my life. Now, I don’t get attracted to them anymore, the interest lacks I suppose.
Do you think video games are dominated by the male population?
Video games are mostly action related. I think that is the reason males are more into video games.
What do you think of girls who are very much into gaming?
Girls… Well, everyone has their own choices, so I don’t find it weird or unnatural for girls to like them. My parents are ok with video games as long as they don’t take away my precious study times.
Would you play, for example, Call of Duty or Batman Arkham City if you were given the chance to?
I have seen my guy friends play Call of Duty and I think it’s a pretty interesting game, but I don’t want myself to get involved into games anymore. I have my studies to be completed, and video games just engulf me. That’s pretty much proven.
What games have you played recently?
I have played Resident Evil 3, Sims 2 and King of Fighters recently. These are very old games, I know.
What games do you plan to play in the future?
I dream of playing Crysis, Witcher 2, Skyrim, and Sims 3. I’ve seen walkthroughs in YouTube and they look amazing. I hope I can get a powerful gaming PC in the future.
What are your thoughts on games? Do you absolutely love to play them? Are they addictive?
Yes I definitely like to play them. I do find them addictive but I have to say that they don’t appeal to me as much as they appeal to boys. I’ve seen boys go crazy over games and I’m not like that. I’m in the middle I guess, a casual gamer.
So you are mainly hindered by the lack of proper hardware to play games?
Yes that is the only reason. My laptop can’t hope to run the latest games.
Do you visit game review sites?
Why do you think girls in general are less into gaming? Is it because of the stereotypes, or parental guidance, or a mix of both?
I got into gaming through my dad who used to play Prince of Persia when I was a kid. I loved to watch him play really. I even used to play Doom 3 on my old desktop. And I don’t really know why other girls aren’t into games. It could be that they never tried out the nice ones.
Did you ever talk about video games with your female friends?
They never asked and I never mentioned. My friends don’t know that I play Resident Evil 3 or that I used to play Doom 3 when I was younger.
What games have you played recently? What games do you plan to play in the future?
I blew my GPU up a couple of months ago, and haven’t gotten it replaced yet because of the A2 exams which start this week. So, I’ve been playing a lot of indie games lately like Drawn, Phantasmat, Bastion, Limbo, and rerunning through older games like WarCraft, Red Alert 2 and Commandos. I also downgraded to Win98 to go on a Legacy of Kain marathon in this time. It’s sad that when LoK came out, I was too young to understand any of it properly.
Currently, I’m on my seventh play-through of Dragon Age: Origins with an elven melee rogue specialized on assassin and duelist. It sucks to play on low graphic details though. Drakensang is what I’ll be playing till I get my hands on the new GPU. (Legit excuse for gaming during exam times: Stress relief.) I’m probably getting an AMD Radeon 5670 right after the cursed exams end, and I plan to jump into Skyrim right away. As of now I’m waiting for Firefall, Mass Effect 3 and Dragon Age 3, of course.
What are your thoughts on girls who refuse to play or appreciate games?
Well, I am indifferent to people – or women, as you put it – who don’t play video games. Some prefer books over TV shows, and some movies over video games. Preferences vary. But yeah, when people start to label me for not being into shoes but into games instead, I’d rather walk in the opposite direction till I’m very, very far away.
Why exactly do you enjoy gaming? What is your favorite genre of game?
What I enjoy about gaming? Everything. It’s a story that unfolds before you and the best part is, you get to live that story, with soundtracks and all. Plus, I like the combat actions. Growing up, I was more attached to the Green Beret character from Commandos than any of my classmates back in school. As for favorite genre, um, I guess RPG. As the name suggests, it has all the elements for you to be an entirely different person, and that’s the best part about living a story. That’s what all literature, art, music are trying to do: make you feel what they feel. Basically, I grew up on RTS and stealth based RTT. I used to like FPS that requires proper planning (like SWAT4), but now that most FPS have the same game-play, I kinda grew out of it.
Do you feel stereotypes ruling over the female gaming population?
You don’t say! Back in 2010, when I used to play Counter Strike online a lot, I wouldn’t dare somehow slip and reveal there’s a girl behind this monitor when on a public server. Everyone would start making a fuss over it, and I usually left the server before they started literally analyzing me. It’s not only the gaming population, I get gasped at while fixing a radiator leak in the middle of the road when the car breaks down and my chauffeur is clueless. I guess, it’s just the society we live in, still holding onto stereotypes and clawing into labels while anything out of it is branded an outcast. I mean, I virtually stab undead while cooking lunch, what does that make me?
Do you know anyone who is as interested in games as you, whether it be boy or girl?
Most of my friends are.
Are most male gamers into Counter Strike and other multi-player games and less interested in games which require thinking, exploring and actually getting lost in the game world?
Again, it differs from person to person. I know people addicted to competitive multi-player gaming, and they take it pretty damn seriously; I know people who play tactical shooters / space flight simulations, and I know other self-proclaimed male gamers where all they play is What’s-its-name-Ville on Facebook, so yeah. In Bangladesh, most gamers are competitive, and most gamers happen to be males. Not the other way around.
Do your parents approve or condemn games?
Well, I don’t give them the regular teensy stuff to complain about, so they let this one go. That’s one way of putting it. Of course, as long as it’s not affecting my grades, health, and so on.
Three interviews are obviously not enough to speak for millions but it did give me a picture of how things actually are. Girls in general don’t talk about games. That does not mean that they don’t enjoy playing them. Girls reading this article, please let us know what video games you like to play. Games, contrary to popular belief, are not geeky or nerdy. They are great ways to pass time and learn new things and even gossip about. Don’t shy away from it, embrace it.