Rumor: Activision Snubs Female Main Characters because They Don't Sell as Well

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sniggler

I guess Activision never heard about the study showing that more people know who Lara Croft is than they do certain historical / world-figures...

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bingojubes

I think that players should have a choice whether to play male or female. I think female leads kick much ass, also. Activision might be shooting themselves in the foot with this game. If the game is as good as they hope it will be, it should include maybe unlockable content so that (maybe?) we can start a new game with a female character. That will want me to play the game at least one more time.

Or users could just mod the heck out of it to include a female lead, but if True Crime: Hong Kong wants to be way better than the first one (i have played the first one, but athe GTA knockoff, with bland GFX kinda killed it), then maybe it might be a good change of pace for the studio. Activision's looking more like EPIC games - very testosterone-filled machoness that even their powersuits (or combative aliens) can't contain. Next they will probably want to have half-nekkid dudes walking around with cheesy tattoos on, because EVERYONE MANLY enough walks around with their shirt off, good or bad.

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Vladislav_Draculva

Metroid...LOL...all depends on what the context is in my opinion...if they had gun toting, grenade throwing, cursing, female avatars in COD:World At War then sales would stay the same me thinks...I don't think it is a gender thing...I think it is a genre thing...

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Mighty BOB!

I have to say that in my entire gaming career I've only played 3 games where I was given the choice to play a female character.  Two of those were Mass Effect 1 and 2 ( <3 Femshep ) and the other was an MMO, Star Trek Online.  I wish there were more strong female character leads.

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smashingpumpin

My female Shepard shakes her head and says: "Nuh-uh! This geek's been playing as me more than twice as much as head huncho John!"

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joepullin

Many months ago I was at my friends' playing Mario cart Wii. I of course chose the Princess. They laughed and laughed. Until I asked them if they liked staring at Mario's ass.

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someuid

If Activision wants to snub female main characters, let them.  It only gives all the other video game companies a way to differentiate themselves from Activision and hopefully outsell them.

Watch out Activision.  You're getting too big to be nimble enough to meet consumer demands.  This could be the beginning of the end for you.

My captcha reads "shepley hairy-rumped".  Who is thinking this stuff up?

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someuid

I enjoy playing a female character (I'm a male).

Funny story:

My wife and I were both playing WoW as female night elves.  Some guy starts following us around, killing spiders and such with us.  We ignored him.  When the area was clear, he turned to us, did some funny wiggle emote and said "So, what are we going to do next?"

I quickly typed out "Sorry, we're on a date.  It's a 'no guys' night."

He said "O..." and ran off, never to bother us again.  Our toons stood there for 5 minutes until my wife stopped laughing.

That made playing a female character worth it in my book.

Besides, if I'm going to play a game for hours and hours, the last thing I want to look at is a male butt swinging from side to side all night long.

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Ulrich

I had similar fun in UO back in the day. Quite entertaining.

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aviaggio

I think Lara Croft, Cate Archer, and those chicks from Mirror's Edge, Resident Evil, Bayonetta, and Heavenly Sword would disagree with Activision. So would all the female Blood and Night Elves in WoW. And all the female superheroes in City of Heroes and Champions Online.

Do I need to go on Activision?? Retards.

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Bucket_Monster

Video games are a business, and all businesses exist for one reason: to make money. If selling games with a female lead to a vastly male audience results in lower sales, call it sexist all you want, but it's smart marketing and business sense. You have to be aware of your target audience.

What can they do to target the female audience? Well not exactly sure, but most likely you'd have to target casual gaming. Activision doesn't really make any casual games, unless you count Guitar Hero, or World of Warcraft. Tons of women play WoW. But that is more an exception because tons of people period play WoW, a lot more people than your average game.

I have no problems with female leads. The Metroid series is one of my all time favorite games. And I want to purchase Bayonetta,  but don't have the funds to at the moment.

The only real complaint I have about Activision's decision on this, is where did they pull this market research from? Did they actually do some sort of analysis, or was it some corporate big wigs in a meeting room talking about how Gears and Halo sold a bazillion copies, so obviously games with females don't sell as well. IF they have the market research to back up their claims, I see absolutely no problem with their decision, whether it might be tasteful or not. If it's just something they pulled out of the air though, then that's wrong.

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Ulrich

 

 

 

I think the lead does not matter if the game is good. All market research is designed to prove is one point or another... I could say that the percentage of successful games that have female leads is substantially higher than those with Male leads... then you can spin it back that their are a lot more games with male leads so there is bound to be a lower % due to shovelware.... but then I could come back with quality over quantity... and so on, and so on.

The game mentioned above will most likely fail either way... but probably would have gotten more attention if it was a female lead. With a male lead it's just more white noise.

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Jelson

And i'm NOT talking about those who play the siims or some facebook game.

FPS

RTS

RPG

for starters.

Secondly, how many guy actually like playing a female character over a male one?

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Vegan

I prefer playing as female when given a choice. In a hobby that's full of male heros, it's refreshing.

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Bucket_Monster

I don't mind playing a female character in a game that's telling its own story. But in games where I have to create my own character or have it be an extension of myself, such as in MMO's, I will never play as a female. I can't identify with that character and it feels unnatural. In a game say like Metroid or Bayonetta, that character is involved in its own world and story, those characters aren't supposed to be me in cyberspace.

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Airheadq

I would have to agree w/ Bucket. If the lead is female then I'm playing her story and thats fine. But in MMOs and the like, I would have to choose a male. Why?, because its a reflection of myself. When people come up to me, that is the first thing you see and judge on that.

Yeah, I get that a female character would be plesant to star at for a while but I don't want to constantly say I'm a guy too. To each its own I guess.

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someuid

You should give playing a female character a try, especially on an MMO.  You might get a better insight into a woman's life and that will make you a better current/future husband.

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Ulrich

Give the kid a break he might enjoy an epic gaming night full of HD man a$$.... lol

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freedivehi

Who's to say assasins creed would have not done well if the main character were female? Also martial arts action movie . . . hello has ANYONE not seen Kill Bill and enjoyed it? A tough Female lead character can be even more impressive than a tough male if she is made human.

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jaygen1

a factor in games like halo and assassin's creed, is that theyre doing what society calls "manly" things, blowing stuff up, and cutting people to pieces. guys who really get into their characters, want to identify with them while doing these cool things, and playing a male character helps them do that more than playing a female lead. last game i played that had a female lead was Mirror's Edge, which was a great game, but to be honest, i didnt connect with her quite as much as i do in other games, because of her gender. plus, when theres a special forces game (of which i would call Master Chief special forces), having a female being the lead of that is just not practical. i bet you can count all the female SEALs in the Navy with the fingers on one hand, if youve lost all the fingers on that hand. if activision really did advise to lose a female lead for game, i'm not one to judge them for trying to make a game that would be more successful. the bottom line is, if more people connect with them, because they share the same gender as the character, and there is a larger playerbase of males, then more power to them. the trend upwards in female gamers is awesome, but hating companies for being companies is kind of ridiculous.

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Ulrich

 

Comparing the real navy seals to Halo... is laughable... one main reason for females not being in the seals is due to the high possibility of capture. Since none of that comes into play in video games which aren't  based on real life... even SOCOM is not accurate to real life... there is no reason why women could not be the main character... think about it if Master chief would have ended up being a girl (ala Metriod) do you think the franchise would not have done as well?

 

I assume you will not be playing gears 3 because they have added women? I'm sure that will completely make that game unrealistic for you.... lol

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jaygen1

i wouldnt play the female character (if there is one, i dont know anything about Gears of War 3). its my personal preference to play male characters, so if in Gears of Wars 3, you only had the option of playing female characters, i would be lying if i said it didnt have an impact on whether i felt i would have the best experience playing it, since i like to connect with my character. i think this article is referring to "the lead", meaning you only have the option of playing a female character, and activision (if the rumor was true) has taken this into account. its just a guess that there are more who share the same sentiment that i do, although its not usually worth the effort of the flames they receive back for sharing their view on how they play, because it sounds "sexist".

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Ulrich

Metroid completely screws up your argument... The Desire to play Metroid did not go down when people found out the lead is female.

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jaygen1

i didnt mean to be speaking in absolutes, although when i read back what i originally wrote, it appears to have conveyed that. yes, there are exceptions to generalizations, but if what i said held no bearing, then how could a rumor even start about a company trying to make a game have a male lead instead of female? it appears you also have dealt in absolutes, since you essentially stated "ive found an exception in your generalization, you're arguement is invalid." i urge you to take what you can from my statement, and also ask yourself, if Samus was revealed a female from the start, would the game have been equally successful from the start?

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Ulrich

That would be speculation. Although Tomb Raider, FF13, and Bayonetta all have female leads.... 2 of which are original IP's... FF has had many different leads and is well established. Mirrors edge is a completely new IP that had a passive character... I doubt you would have liked it any better if it was a guy.... although that is speculation on my part, but you seem to be the "I want to be a bad a$$" in every game you play. The Gears 3 argument is going along with your not thinking women should be in Special Forces (in games) because they are not in the real world so in turn it takes the realism out of the game... for you... I imagine you do not enjoy action movies that have female leads as well?

 

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Ulrich

FF13, Tomb Raider, Bayonetta... say hi.... just to name a few. Activision is too busy regurgitating the same game over and over to even know how to create a good game with a female lead.

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Biceps

If I am playing a 3rd person game - like Dragon Age, or Mass Effect, or Fallout 3... I ALWAYS choose a female character... my rationale being that if I have to watch some person's tushy wave in my face for 40-60 hours, it might as well be a nicely-shaped female tushy.

And you wonder why guys are addicted to gaming!

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US_Ranger

Biceps hit the nail on the head. When I played Oblivion and Fallout 3, I chose a female character for that exact reason. Sure, if you're decked out in metal armor it won't matter quite as much. However, I don't want to see some dude in a loin cloth for 40+ hours running around on my screen. I'd rather see a very realistic G-string that somehow blocks arrows and fireballs. Female characters ftw!

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Blues22475

Part of the problem is that there's the stereotype that women and games don't mix (whether it be characters or actual female gamers). This is a bunch of nonsense seeing as today I've hear more and more female gamers, and that I've heard more and more people seem to not care which gender they're playing. I personally don't care which gender I play as so long as the game is good. I have a friend who will make female characters if he can help it.

Another problem I see or could be an issue is that the stereotypical gender roles. Although in society that's still less an issue, it still exists. The reasons why those game cited sold so well was because the game itself not because you're playing as a dude.

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