Brenda Laurel: Why didn’t girls play video games?

Found: A talk by Brenda Laurel from 1998, entitled Why didn’t girls play video games?

She discusses her research methods, outcome, and reception, including explaining the 4% who gave her negative feedback.

I’d just like to contrast this with Gonzalo Frasca’s comment on Super Princess Peach.

I personally think that Super Princess Peach sounds like a lot of fun.  She’s a princess, not a regular little girl.  Like in the Princess and the peach, where the poor Princess was identified because she couldn’t sleep while there was a single pea placed under all those mattresses.  What do Frasca and Bogost really expect Princess Peach to do?  Suddenly grow balls and turn into the female version of Mario?  Turn into animals like Mario does, only to have it suggested that she is dressing herself up in a sexual way by making herself “animalistic”?  I’m sure if there was a game called, “Super Princess Daisy,” you could do all those things.  She’s a saucy, tomboyish brunette.  Just listen to the differences in their voices in Mario Party DS.

I think what I’m trying to get at is that men who are interested in Serious Games shouldn’t try and judge what effect a game like this will have on a young girl.  We like to role play much more than boys (anyway, the boys would just come in pretending they had a gun to kill something with… but you don’t see anyone crying about that stereotype in FPS games targetted to adult men), and we certainly understand that Princess Peach is a certain idea of a character.  We’d rather be our own selves, our own unique Princess.

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