Female Gamers, Unite!

January 14, 2008
By Emilee Carducci, Brockport, NY

People have their own passions. People have their own flaws. And, yes, everyone in this world may share these passions and flaws with others, but who’s to say who is better suited? May I put on the pants of a gamer and take off the skirt of a “chick?” Well, let me tell you about one of my own passions and the problems I face, because I am still wearing that pink skirt that I threw into the laundry basket when I was six. I can’t figure how it is still on, when I clearly saw it being sold in one of my mother’s barn sales.

The world of female gamers is not a world that many are familiar with. I have gamed since I was four; when I was three I was still getting into trouble for chewing on the controller cords. Sure, I grew up like a normal girl would. I still played with dolls and dressed up with my younger sister, Julie. But part of me grew with a passion to game as I would play all these games with my older brother and be dazzled by the big grey box on the floor. ‘Super Mario World’ was a start, and then it was off to “Beef and Turtle Soup,” (inside joke) as my brother and I would remember it, on ‘Mario Kart,’ and the Kong family on all the different Donkey Kong games.

Now, I own my very own Playstation 2 and 3. (Don’t even ask how many gaming-systems are paying rent in our home.) I’m heading off to the world of ‘Wii,’ and I have surpassed the real hardships of online gaming. So? What is the big deal, huh? Okay, okay so now I should probably dive into all the yucky stuff where my mouth will run off on a spree of fury and passion and all that jazz. The world of female gamers is probably one of the most riveting debates of our time.

As I said, I have surpassed the online gaming hassles. That means “there are no chicks on the Internet.” Rule that follows: there are only older men pretending to be girls, or FBI agents pretending to be little girls to help catch creepy pedophiles. Yes, that is right. Breathe in the aroma of men, men, and more men. Though, I must say from experience, it is by far safer for females to stay off the Internet if you don’t want to risk the deep cuts of men ruining your self-esteem. It will happen, unless you eat bullets for breakfast, served with milk and a side of those yellow cheesy scrambled eggs.

Do you think I am kidding? ‘Nowai.’ (Excuse the leet-speak for those who cannot understand. Correction: No way.) I have felt the hurt of Internet insults when I first started playing online. Trust me, if you want to game with other people, you are better off sticking to Playstation or Xbox. One person on the ‘Digg’ forums commented about female gamers saying, “I don't mind women gaming as long as they are beautiful. Seriously.” This is a very important thing to have under your belts if you want to survive-- looks. And not the looks like “Oh, she’s cute.” Those looks don’t cut it on the Internet. They will rip your “cute” away from you and feed it to the dogs.
So, then you are thinking ‘Well, how would they know how you look?’ One word, ‘pics.’ Guys online are after the sex appeal that you could give them. They will tell you things like [ ] Tits [ ] GTFO … expecting you to give them pics. Or, they will say you are not a girl unless you prove it, later making it more difficult when you send an image and they say it is your sister or some random ‘Google’ picture. So what’s next? They will lure you into taking a picture where you write whatever “saying” they ask for, on your stomach, boobs, whatever. If you have a nice guy, he will ask for your screen name for any messenger and then ask for a pic where you write something on a piece of paper. Hint: he is only being nice now to use you later. These guys know how the game works. They butter you up after you have been defiled and expect you will give in with even more sex appealing images when you are feeling better. “Oh, he was so nice to me before and seems cool, might as well…” Go ahead, be naïve and give in. I am trying to help all females out here. Later when it is sent across the entire forum, you will begin crying and wondering where things went wrong. It gets worse if you only started gaming because of a brother who would then see the images across the forums. Another hint: Forum moderators are having just as much fun as the guys posting the insults and seeking images. So the most they will do is close a topic and let it sit around until people forget about it. If you can survive that and stick around, you better bet it will come back later and bite you in the rear.

Seriously, I have seen this happen so many times. Then real female gamers, like me, are peeved because naïve little girls are disturbing the peace and getting in way over their heads to entertain a bunch of horny men. I do find it entertaining, too, because most of the time I will warn the girls before the entire ruckus comes about. So someone please stop all these little girls from giving female gamers bad names.

You could play it out as not even being a girl online, if you are that worried and actually listen to me. Be a ‘guy’ for a while and see how things roll. But do refrain from typing things like “oh em gee like I totally have to go out shopping so talk to you later guys!!” Play it right if you want to play at all. I am not trying to be anal about girls playing online, just don’t mess up and continue giving the majority of guys, and actual female gamers, a reason to hate you. When a female plays a game like ‘Socom U.S. Navy Seals’ online, they are in for a lot of busting their britches if they even want to compete with the guys. You won’t be killing any tangos, the tangos will be sniping you out or running at you with an a-k 47 and you’ll be down in the mud before you hit ‘R1.’ Smart thing to do is to stay under the radar. Until you can game, at least.

A couple years ago I found myself in the middle of an online feud while playing ‘Socom2: US Navy Seals,’ and the reason for all the madness was my gender. My good friend Cody and I were on the Seals team minding our own business and killing off the terrorists with speed and determination. A guy with a hint of a Spanish accent began talking to me over the headset, because I was communicating with my friend Cody that way and not over a phone. You’d think it would be okay, since your own guy friend knows who you are and other guys will normally back off thinking you are your friend’s girl-friend or something of the such. Interestingly enough, this guy didn’t care. He started to hit on me and make sexual comments in a sarcastic manner. Then his friends began to chant in too. Cody and I tried to ignore them and comment back only when needed, but it got to a point where the two of us had enough. So we sacrificed our own ranks and turned on our fellow team members. Hint: for every friendly kill (your own team mate) you lose one of your real kills (the terrorists in this case). It turned into an epic duel and the terrorist team began to take the lead. Lucky for Cody and I, we won.
If you are a child prodigy at any game, by all means show them your moves and flaunt your victory in their awe-filled faces. Mine will be awe-filled as well, rest assured. I have had life so much easier when guys think I am a guy. Good thing I have a lower voice and can make it lower if I honest-to-God need to speak into the headset. Also not having a name like “Lady_Kitty” or “gurl_power” or any name even hinting at being a female is a very wise decision. I currently hold a very random name of letters on mIRC. (I won’t add it here, incase some of you reading this decide you’d like it for yourself-- which would make me push my mind to discover a new creative name.) Basically, chat heaven and those guys all think I am a guy unless I tell them otherwise.

Don’t get me wrong; it’s annoying to pretend. Though, sometimes I wish I could always pretend, even in real life. This is because some of these girl “gamers” turn into major attention seekers and send out images of their self in revealing ways, for many guy gamers to see. It becomes degrading to the female gender, the more of it I see and hear about. Some of these girls give ‘Playboy’ a run for their money; or so I hear. So basically you think you’ve earned yourself some higher status in the gaming world by sending pics, but in all reality the guys wear the crown and are receiving the pat-on-the-back while others will start asking you, to gain their own fame. Your fame? Lucky you gain a new title of (please excuse my language for the phrase) “attention whore.” Don’t think that it makes them like you more. You better have a very ‘laid-back-guy-personality’ to back it up if you want to stay.

The gaming world is not a world for everyone. If your passions lead you there, I wish you the best. Guy or girl. Always have fun and remember that it is only a game. The same goes for all you video-game-junkies; meaning there is a ‘Matrix’ world right outside your bedroom door; might as well add your kitchen door too. So while you make new friends and enemies online, don’t forget you have some friends down the road playing a brutally fun game of street hockey. Or, you could live out in the middle of no-where (a.k.a. the country side) like me, and rely on good ol’ Bambi. Either way, for any “female gamers,” stay safe and ‘get your game on.’

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