Girl Games and Queer Theory

So there are “Grrl Gamers,” and “Girl Games.” So basically, in the game-playing market, there are women and there are androgynes or undifferentiated? You’re female… or you’re a “normal gamer”?

Okay, before I begin, I want to clear one thing up. “Feminism.” God, that term and that concept is SO OLD. It’s about as dated as Strucuralism- and yet the games community seems to hold onto both. I’m not the only one to have noticed this.

Queer Theory is like Feminism’s cooler, sexier younger half-brother who has been taking too many substances, has issues with “how to love,” but really enjoys staying up all night for pre-dawn deep-and-meaningful conversations. He doesn’t turn around and tell you that one group has been oppressing the other, he says that everyone’s been oppressing everyone because they’re all so afraid of disappearing if they don’t have something against which to define themselves. He’s pretty fun to be around, because he’s not into putting down another group just to make the “oppressed” one feel better. He’s into telling them both to chill out and just be themselves.

Basically, Feminism is angry about how women have been treated. Queer Theory is generally amused by the idea that there are concepts and ideas that we assume are naturally true. He’s been hanging out with that guy who likes to get on your nerves by constantly asking, “Is it?” every time you say this is how things are. He’s also been hanging out with the guy who really loves underdogs and joined the debating team just so he can make witty retorts, regardless of whether he believes in his side of the debate.

Now, I hope you have met Queer Theory and think he’s okay. I hope you guys don’t think, “This girl’s such a feminazi!” Because, guess what? Queer Theory defends everyone from being pidgeonholed into what they should be or like. And from this, I would like to point out a little observation I made about “Girl Games.” Biggest set-up ever.

Why I hate the term Girl Games.

I understand it from a development, marketing and advertising perspective. They’re your target market. That’s great! Good on you for being the chosen product for the Female 8-13 year old demographic.

But what if a MALE 8-13 year old wants to buy it? He’ll have to hide it from his friends, or else he’ll get accused of all manner of un-PC things regarding his gender and sexuality. The problem with Girl Games is that not only does it keep girls in the percieved inferior gamer demographic, it also shames and demasculinises the young men who purchase “The Sims 3” for themselves. Or those who want a pink DS because they just really like that colour. Remember that there is no such thing as, “boy games.” The games aimed at boys and men are just considered, “games,” which girls can play if they want (which often leads to the popular image of grrl gamers, who are either hyper-feminine or hyper-masculinised). This is similar to the “chick flick” and… “other movies,” concept. What about guys who enjoy RomComs?

I hate than men are forced into such a rigid defense of their masculinity in order to be considered normal males. I hate that this is done through making women the inferior demographic. Not for my sake, but for the sake of those men who don’t fit and are afraid of what they are.

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