Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Gender Debate

How do you pick the gender of your character?

Do you consider the class of the character before you choose? Maybe create a little background for the character explaining how he or she will fit into the virtual world they will call home for the next 80 levels or so? Do you choose gender based on what you'll be looking for the long leveling hours to come? Or is does the choice involve scamming players out of gold or gifts?

In the age of programs like Ventrillo and Teamspeak, does a male playing a female character shock you or is it business as usual? Does a flirt from a male or female character cause you to stop and take notice or is it just an irritant that is quickly ignored? Do people really pay attention to the gender of their fellow characters? As players, do you believe that the gender you pick will effect how other players interact with you in the virtual world or how well you will do in the virtual world?

Do we agree with Tobold that "ultimately your avatar is just a playing piece, and reading too much into his gender or race, and then projecting real world politics onto that, can only be a bad thing." or with "that avatars are projections of self into the game space, each chosen for specific reason and with specific intentions. Some might choose an avatar solely for game purposes, for personal aesthetics, or entirely haphazardly. But some do so to express themselves in ways they can only do so in a virtual world"?

Could it be that we have just been forced to become desensitized to the gender aspect of the game? One can not deny that you can become anyone you want inside this virtual world, so why would you want to bring real world issues and problems like gender into a place that is an escape for most if not all players?

This entire crazy debate was brought to the gaming community via a set of bunny ears. I just don't get it and hopefully I never will.


  1. I'm sure everyone who crosses gender lines has a different reason, so Tobold and Anjin are both right.

    I'm rationalized my using girl characters by pointing out the fact that though I may be a guy playing a girl character, there are plenty of humans pretending to be Taurens and Trolls out there, too.

    But then again, I think it's just because I like the way girl characters look more, so I have an easier time getting attached to them.

  2. if I'm playing with my wife.. I'm male, if I'm playing alone.. I'm usually male unless its my goof off char. I don't like confusing people. However, women are nicer to look at its true.