Thursday, August 2, 2012

I Am A Gamer

It's Gamer Girl month and do I have a treat for you! Check down at the bottom for more information on prizes and other exciting stuff!

From top left, clockwise: Skyrim, City of Villains, SWTOR, SWTOR, SWG, SWTOR

Yes, that's right. I'm a girl, and I'm a gamer. I play video games. Every day. Crazy, right?

Well, it turns out that it's not so crazy. Being a gamer used to be something I was ashamed of. I bought into the stereotypical idea that people who played video games were losers. But in this day and age, video games are so prevalent, I think it's time people accept them as a part of our lives. So many different people play video games, that it should no longer hold the stigma it used to. Believe it or not, reading used to be seen as lazy. But now it's just an accepted part of normal life. Games should be, too.

In fact, games have certain benefits that get overlooked quite often. I see that look on your face, but hear me out.

First and foremost, video games develop problem solving skills. Yes, yes they do. By their nature, video games require a person to tackle missions and solve issues. Sure, sometimes those missions are just killing stuff, but most games also involve more complex problems that you actually need to think about.

Games build social skills. As I've mentioned before, I feel more comfortable being myself on the internet. I find it hard to relate to new people face to face. Playing video games allows me to interact with other people and build those relationships through collaboration without the same level of fear of rejection that comes in the physical world.

Games build confidence. Video games allow us to achieve things that would never be possible in real life. We can save worlds, be successful, be the person we always wanted to be, and in living that fantasy, we start to build our inner confidence. It helps us break through some of the barriers we have built and allows us to grow in our real life.

And despite popular belief, girls do play games. In fact, many recent studies show that about half the gamers out there are female. Video games hold the same appeal for girls as they do for guys. Later this month, I'll be going into more detail on that and we'll have some fabulous guest posts. Until next time, keep on gaming!

Jane McGonigal did a really amazing talk on why gaming could help change the world. I won't go into detail, but if you have an extra 20 minutes, it's worth the watch.

Now for the fun stuff! First, send me your pictures! At the end of this month, I will be doing a compilation of all the awesome photos I receive from fellow female gamers. If you're a girl and you're a gamer, take your picture with a sign that says you're a gamer and/or your favorite video game and send it to me at Be as creative as you like, just keep it PG-13. 

Don't forget the prizes! For every post you comment on this month, you will be entered into a drawing to win either Call of Duty: Black Ops II* or Guild Wars 2* (or another game of your choice of similar value). All you have to do is comment! Each post may also include additional ways to enter, so make sure you read carefully.

*Standard edition only, valued at approximately $60 USD. If games are not available in the winner's country, an item of similar value may be substituted.


  1. Hey, love your post! I'm a gamer too -- mainly Xbox (Skyrim at the moment).

    I think we may be at the point that we can move on from this necessary declaration that it's OK for women to play video games. Sometimes it seems that adding caveats like, "I know it's crazy, but hear me out... I'm a woman, and I play video games -- no, really I do!" only tend to further the point that it's weird or different when your whole point is that it isn't (and I agree!)

    Maybe it's more an issue for some of us "older" folk -- I'm over 30 and it is difficult to admit to coworkers who are clueless over the difference between a first person shooter and a sidescroller that I spent all Saturday indoors leveling up my character. Some of them think I should be having babies (never mind I am married, pay a mortgage and am a responsible citizen!). But for the younger gen, I don't think any of this is shocking. In fact, it's rather distracting when someone points out they are a girl gamer with some type of expectant reaction. Do I say congratulations?

    Anyway, I do agree we still have a long way to go. I've heard harassment over Xbox live against female gamers (and experienced it myself: always on HALO), and while I don't hide my identity, I do have a gender neutral XBox live name -- I have no interest in being OMGGamerGirl99! with a tag "I'm a GURL & GAME, so WHAT?" I think it invites drama and criticism rather than overcoming it.

    And I include all kinds of games -- it could be Peggle or Mario Kart or HAMSTERZII for the DS. Lots of games for lots of different people is what matters. It's supposed to be fun! :)

  2. I love seeing that gamer girls are no longer shying away from telling others. I think the time when most guys would freak out and start hitting on anyone that said they were female is over. Which is good. However, now it seems to be a "fetish" and all these models you see in their underwear with controllers in their mouth are not gamers. Sorry the pg-13 on the photos comment made me think of this. lol great post :)

  3. I'm loving Skyrim, too, Stephsco. Well, I was, until I discovered LOTRO. I'm very much an MMO girl. :)

    Gracie, those guys are still out there, but as the newer generations of gamers come in, they're slowly being forced to change their attitudes. And I've noticed that in games, it's also "cool" to make your character run around in as few clothes as possible. Really? A commando carrying a massive gun and shooting people in the face in a slave girl outfit? Come on now, folks. At least give her a pair of gloves so she doesn't get a callus. :D


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