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Gaming and Gender

Discussion in 'Technology, Gaming, Soft-& Hardware' started by Kasey, Mar 1, 2016.

?

Do you play your gender in video games?

  1. Trans women playing females

    24 vote(s)
    19.2%
  2. Cis women playing females

    6 vote(s)
    4.8%
  3. Cis men playing males

    33 vote(s)
    26.4%
  4. Trans males playing males

    11 vote(s)
    8.8%
  5. Not the above choices

    51 vote(s)
    40.8%
  1. Kasey

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    So I was curious about this topic. Part of my own journey and transition was possible by my reflection on this.

    While I had a lot of fear as a youth and into early adulthood about expressing femininity I was free to be female in any games I could. In fact so much so to the point I wouldn't buy certain games if I couldn't use a female character. It was my release from reality.

    When I started telling people online I was female I felt guilty... but then came to the idea that I wasn't lying and shouldn't be guilty. It was like a sort of training ground...

    So. I put this thread out here to see if the following holds generally true primarily if given a choice or preference.

    Cis male plays biological sex
    Cis female plays biological sex
    Trans woman plays gender identity aligned
    Trans male plays gender identity aligned

    And anything that doesn't fit those categories such as cis males playing females primarily.
     
  2. Kodo

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    I would absolutely agree with you, Kasey.

    Growing up, I played lots of video games and RPG's were my favourite. Why? Because I could create and be a guy. Even before I started questioning my gender, the virtual reality I was a part of in games, as a male, comforted me somehow. I was always emphatic about playing a guy, and avoided games where there wasn't a male character I could be. I never played a male for "attractiveness reasons" like how my brothers like playing female characters because "they're hot." I did it because it was like a secret place I could be myself, and yet on a subconscious level all through my childhood. It was who I wished I could be, and games were the only places I could express that.

    Damn, now I want to play an RPG.
     
  3. angeluscrzy

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    I don't question my gender, but I do create female characters for games that offer the choice.
     
  4. justin88

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    I'm gay and I used to create only female characters... Now it's about 50/50
     
  5. alonsy alonso

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    i usually just end up using what the game gives me in the first place so it can vary and really depends on the stereotyping of the game.
     
  6. Jellal

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    Usually I prefer female characters. It does feel more natural and immersive to me, whereas with male characters I tend to make them more as joke characters. Same goes for RPing.
     
  7. Chiroptera

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    Most of my characters are male, but i have some female characters too.

    In reality, i never thought much about this. I can play and enjoy any character.
     
  8. RawringSnake

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    Short Answer: For me, it was "Not the options above" since I am as likely to play as one gender as I am to play the other, but there is no fun in just leaving it at that, so here is some context:

    Long Answer:
    On a surface level, stuff like the design of the characters in question or which options are available to you based on gender are factors that will help sway me one way or the other in any given game. For instance, in the Mass Effect games I played male simply because a male Shepard has more romantic interests than a female Shepard—that and the fact that I found it impossible to make a female character with ME1's creation tools that didn't look like ass; hence, Andy Shepard was born. In Dragon Age: Origins, however, I played female, because I thought it would be really cool to buck the trend in medieval settings for once and be a woman that wasn't there just to be raped or service other men (spoiler: she lived up to expectations, murdering her way to Queenship by the end of the game :grin:); thus, Jinnie Cousland came to be.

    I have plenty of other examples like that. In the first Borderlandsgame I played as Lilith, because she was the only one of the playable characters that looked good (god, the other characters are so ugly) plus her class was the most interesting to me, but in Borderlands 2 I played as Salvador, for pretty much the same reasons (though all the characters looked good in this one). In Divinity: Original Sin, I created a female character because I'm playing co-op with a buddy and I knew he would create a male character, so I went female to add some variety. In Fire Emblem: Awakening I created a male avatar because he had the coolest hairstyle, but now I'm playing female in Fire Emblem Fates because I find the design of "Corrin" is better suited to the female form (and again, her romantic interests are way more enticing to me).

    This is all to say, the factors I consider when deciding which gender to play as are aesthetic, functional or narrative in nature. One thing I do not factor is whether or not the character in question represents me, because that's not how I approach games in general, and on a deeper level that is the real answer.

    I've come to realize that I'm the oddity among gamers in this sense, but truth be told, I never play as "myself". Even when given a blank slate precisely for that reason, I will just make up a character (sometimes going as far as to devise an entire imaginary backstory for them) and play as that person. My characters are not an extension of me nor stand-ins for myself, because, simply put, I'm boring lol. I'm just a regular dude, and if put in these fantastical scenarios, I would just make regular-dude choices (safe, predictable, boring).

    Andy Shepard was as fun and interesting to play as because he was an asshole that would make all these radical renegade choices in service of him and his interest first, regardless of the collateral damage he would leave in his wake. I never interfered with his persona nor projected myself on him, even when I disagreed with "his" choices. For me, it's more compelling to be an spectator and guide to the unfolding story of these characters. I'm their God, basically; omnipresent, I shape them, I guide them, I influence them, I make life hard for them, I subject them to my every whims, I raise them and then I send them out to die miserable deaths for my amusement (just like the biblical God!); but they are not me, and I make a point to craft them and their personalities very distinct from mine.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is that my characters could be anything because I'm not basing them on me.

    Fun Fact: I'm currently playing Grim Dawn and FE Fates and in both games I'm playing female. Total happenstance.
     
    #8 RawringSnake, Mar 1, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2016
  9. Nordland

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    I usually create male characters. However I have a few female ones on Skyrim.
     
  10. Kasey

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    Need more data, but I'm seeing a sort of trend.

    Also, I have no problem playing someone awesome like Snake or the guys from Gears of War, but let's say I wished I could have played someone like Eva in mgs3 or Anya from Gears.
     
    #10 Kasey, Mar 1, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2016
  11. Dented

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    I've put 'none of the above choices' in the poll because I'm not really sure how I identify right now, but yeah, this is definitely something that rings true for me recently. A couple of months ago when my dysphoria started properly kicking in I had the urge to go back to a game with a detailed character creator system (can't imagine why...) and ended up creating a female character called Keri on Dragon Age: Inquisition.

    Three guesses as to what name I've started thinking of myself as sometimes.
     
  12. AgenderMoose

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    I put none of the above because I'm an agender playing...whaatever kind of character fits me aesthetically (or gameplay-wise, if that's a factor e.g. fighting games). This often leads me to have issues with RPGs that make you choose a boy or a girl. I just have to sit there looking back and forth between the style differences of the boys and girls and see which one I like the most. If the men and women have a customization option, then I get ecstatic. Otherwise I spend like five minutes just trying to figure out how I wanna answer the "boy or girl" question.
     
  13. FootballFan101

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    In all the games I hought since I found out my gender I made my character a woman and it feels great
     
  14. Hawk

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    I said none of the above, though I usually play as the male character.
     
  15. Pret Allez

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    What a great thread, Kasey! (*hug*) I have a similar experience where I felt that gaming, particularly tabletop games like Dungeons and Dragons, provided a safe space to explore my gender. For a very long time, I've played almost entirely female characters, and I've never identified with the male characters I've played.

    In fact, one of the things I noticed after a while is that I could tell when I didn't actually give a fuck about the game, because if I didn't give a fuck, I was playing a male character.

    I've always put more thought into and identified with my female characters, which come to think of it now, makes a lot more sense because of who I am and how I feel about my gender now.

    [So I went with trans woman playing female characters]

    ~ Adrienne
     
    #15 Pret Allez, Mar 1, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2016
  16. Argentwing

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    Cis guy who usually plays males. I do have some feminine tendencies, but relate overwhelmingly with guys and only really see myself as one. If I play a female it's to try out the different in-game traits of that character less so than to express my actual gender. Or to look at them because they're cute :astonished: but that could be a male character too.
     
  17. Justinian20

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    Usually I play male characters, but sometimes I may play female. In games I'm quite weird in that all my characters have story, so I base the characters I choose on a story. That is RPG setting mostly, recently I do play as females and try to develop them so I can start to write female characters better, my imagination definitely focuses on men. So I'm trying to expand, but it is a little hard so my female characters have very strong warrior personalities as opposed to girly personalities.
     
  18. Cedar

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    Sometimes I might play females but I tend to prefer games where I can play male characters. I think it really depends on whether I want to RP or not. Like for example, I create female characters on WoW for the sake of RPing with my other characters(like she might be my main's sister or something).
     
  19. ApexxShadow

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    I think most of the time I play female characters because I feel like it's more relatable and immersive even though I don't identify as female, though I am biologicly cx
     
  20. Kinky

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    I tend to play male characters if there is a body settings like sims, ihihihihihihihihi. However, in some exceptional cases, such as Dragon Age 2, I play female Hawke. I like her voice.