making gaming look good.

I play a lot of video games. And yes, when i’m setting up my character / avatar at the beginning of the game, I almost always choose the available female character. I want my character to feel like a representation of me, especially if i’m going to go and play online.

Part of this is probably some lurking hardcore feminist attitude peeking out – hell yeah, I want those boys to know they’re being beaten by a girl! But mostly, I just want to look good. I want my character to look good while she’s kicking ass, the same way I cringe at the thought of going out without any make-up on.

So I find it annoying that there aren’t that many cool customisation options for girls game avatars. One of my favourite games is Unreal Tournament; the options for making my character look stylish and sexy and hard as nails are woefully limited. Even more annoying is when games offer more customisation for female characters – but only so that guys can get excited by watching a female character in some kind of latex S&M fetish wear,┬áthat essentially covers just enough to stop it from being porn.

It’s something both fashion designers and games creators should think about – imagine the commercial opportunities. Product placement, game credits being accumulated and used to buy custom designer in-game gear, advertising opportunities. Designers are always up there leading the way with digital innovation, so why not gaming as well?

I get that most gamers are guys, and you have to cater to your audience. That’s fair enough. But maybe with more design options like this, perhaps more girls would get into gaming…



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