The numbers are out there: over 40% of gamers are women, yet there has yet to be a game about and for those women. For the medium to grow, we need a girl riot.
Videogames and rock and roll have a lot in common. Both were rebellious and played with new technology, they were both maligned by conservatives and they both historically treated women like crap. Rock spawned the riot grrrl movement to empower women to speak about their experiences in the punk rock scene. Erin Hoffman calls for an analogous movement within the games industry in issue 235 of The Escapist:
Maybe if a game exploring what it feels like to be a woman were made, it would scare the shit out of us because it would feel too real. But it’s within the power of the medium to explore. Besieged by AAA games that seem to grow only more empty of important issues as time goes on (Bayonetta, I’m looking at you), there has never been a better moment for revolution.
The experiences of women may not be easy to portray in the aggressive world of videogames. If such a game is made – and I hope it is – it will be because its creators demanded to be heard. It will be created because women made it.
Let’s face it, as much as videogames have been a male hobby in the past, the truth is that this has changed and more and more women have been picking up the game controller. For them to be ignored so heartily by a medium obsessed with guns and male prowess is a problem. There is a possible solution, the call to action is there: Riot Grrrls Wanted.