Wii & Women

Why it has become so hard to convince our girlfriends, mothers, or even our grandmothers to pick up a videogame controller and invite them to our world of gaming that they don't seem to appreciate that much. Mind you, that there are many female gamers out there but their voices haven't reached the gaming public or the gaming industry. However, this news seems to bother Nintendo as well. Nintendo slowly started to capitalize the female market by releasing titles such as Nintendogs and Brain Age, on their current handheld phenomenon the Nintendo DS. Now, they want to make the same thing with their next-gen console The Wii. Are they going to succeed?

The Whole Shenanigan

It's no shock that much fewer women play video games than men. So from a business standpoint, it makes sense that Nintendo would want to expand their sales into that new market. But whether the Wii and its PR are doing something "good" for the state of gaming equality, that's a whole other story.

So far, Nintendo is the only one who is including women in its ad campaign

On the one hand, it's refreshing to see a major player like Nintendo thinking about women -- not just in terms of one game, but a whole console, and with it a slew of "non-girly" titles. It's also encouraging to see female players linked with innovation, something the video game industry, as a whole needs desperately. Women have finally made it onto the larger marketing map. But there is something unsettling in the way Nintendo has been pushing the Wii for women. It's not that a new design will knock down the social barriers to entry, but that the system is so intuitive, so simple, it will knock down barriers of ability. As if women, like young children and the elderly (another target audience who has the right to be upset), were incapable of playing traditional games.

Now, here’s the wacky thought: the Wii isn't being given to women. It's being given to men to give to women. In some sort of crazy, gender-based, gaming colonialism, Nintendo's new system isn't being marketed toward women themselves, but to their sons, boyfriends, and fathers. Women, like other family members, are only then invited to play along.

The End of Inequality?

Does marketing "easy" gameplay to women hold water? Maybe, maybe not. What's certain though is that, even as Nintendo looks toward its female market, they still consider women as secondary gamers. How many more generations of consoles will it take before women get to hold the controls?

Is she going to hold it or not?

8 Responses to "Wii & Women"

The Solar Alchemist (visit their site)

shot gun

well i think the reason it's hard to get woman it to playing games is cause most of them think of it as these children do.
But i don't know whether They can actualy change there their opinnion on it. but it will be intersting to see what they can do about it.

Anonymous (visit their site)

heeeyy!! i plaay video games! believe it or not i have my own play station 2 and i always play with my couzin and i even beat him (well sumtimes) :P

L's brain (visit their site)

gendering is a performative act that creates us. as children, it starts with oh it's a girl or it's a boy. acting in 'girl' ways is what makes a person a 'girl' although this is JUST a FICTION o 7achy fathy

The boying and girling continues as the child grows up :)
videogames are for boys. barbies for girls. crazy yeah? i noticed that many young girls (7-10 yrs old) own a gameboy or something. just for the sake of owning it (mostly pink ones heheh) but then they just stop bcoz they can't resist the female peer pressure. hmm it's not even peer pressure. hehe it's actually society pressure. nice post fallen angel.

Bella Color (visit their site)

Women are taking over the world... so the answer to ur question is YESSS!

Adorra (visit their site)

My sister has a Nintendo DS but it's not my thing.

ZiZoTiMe (visit their site)

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Fallen Angel (visit their site)

@Solar Alchemist: I think they are willing to play videogames as along as the games themselves don't degrade the women (aka. Grand Theft Auto) nor it has explicit violence and gore (aka Resident Evil). But most importantly, the games have to be easy to play....and that's what the Wii is trying to accomplish.

@Samboosa: LOOOOL, good for you then ^_^

@L's Brain: Yes, social pressure is a big part of why women aren't into videogames. I mean, it's sooo rare for a girl to invite her girlfriends for a round of a multiplayer. Although, I do know some girls whom occasionally love to hang out and play Mario Party all night long.

@Bella: Allah yesma3 menech :)

@Adorra: Ahhhh, your sister has a very good taste...you should give it a try sometimes. You'll love it.

@ZiZo: I'll check it ^_^

Kuwaiti Femme (visit their site)

I've been a gamer since my dad got us our first Nintendo. moved on to sega, ps, ps2, psp, and Nintendo DS... (my bros would watch me play lol)

but these days i feel like the games are all war themed, and guns and violent.. and so i just don't play... I'd rather jump on mushrooms, or collect gold rings, or ride a horse through a forest then pick up an AK or a sniper and kill things.

but now..I'm super excited! the
Wii looks like so much fun! (Wheee!) lol