Our game is female friendly, we have wonderwoman!!!

This is an article I spotted on MTV Multiplayer: DC Universe Devs explain why their game is female friendly!

Even before reading this, I’m thinking that this is going to be a hard sell. Superhero comics, whilst having a strong female following, have not been traditionally ‘female friendly’. And the ones which have bucked the trend have tended to be the more soap opera types of setups, like X-Men and its various spinoffs. And books like Sandman which is damn good but not very superhero at all, when you come down to it.

Everyone in superhero comics has unrealistic physiques but the women are typically heavily sexed up, with vast boobs and teeny outfits. We know why they’re there. Don’t treat us like idiots. It’s not that there aren’t strong female characters or stories that appeal to girls, but there’s no point pretending that it’s a primary audience.

Anyway, on to the interview. I’ll sum up the more quotable points here:

We are going out of our way in ‘DC’ because we saw that women were really the largest part of the audience for ‘The Dark Knight

Great film. Were women really the largest part of the audience? Huh. We have good taste, sisters.

A lot of my friends play with their significant other or spouse, and they usually like to play the stuff that’s not so up-front combat-wise; they like to do the healing, the support, the buffing, and that sort of group management. So we made sure that we tried to make that more than just watching people’s health bars on the side of the screen. It wasn’t just playing the interface; it was actually still just playing the game. So our concepts for having the support people involved are very different from what other MMOs have.

Yeah, we all play support characters. Not that it isn’t a good thing to have some ideas to make support more interesting but nice job on the assumptions there.

And also, we don’t have death in the game; we just have knock-outs so when you do “die,” you can get right back up again and into the fight. So there’s less critical failure points for people who are more casual and aren’t necessarily as into a hardcore of an experience.

What is it you’re really trying to say here, Jen? Girls cry when they get killed? We’re all casual players? Again, this isn’t a bad idea in itself but I’m not seeing the girl friendliness.

I have an idea, how about costumes that aren’t made of two bottle caps and some floss? How about gameplay that supports proper character arcs, dependent NPCs with personalities and some soap opera style group story mechanics? How about some moody gothic shit? We love that stuff (while we’re waiting for CCP to get moving on their Vampire MMO).

Or shall we just stick Wonder Woman in?

Wonder Woman is in our game; she’s one of the most recognizable female characters in the world. So the appeal that we have as far as just female presence in the [intellectual property] is very large.

Yes! Wonder Woman has very large …. tracts of fans.

12 thoughts on “Our game is female friendly, we have wonderwoman!!!

  1. In my experience, women are as likely to have dps characters as men.
    Yes, women may prefer to play healers more than men do, but they like to top the damage meters just the same, and they are every bit as ruthless as men at pvp (those that pvp, of course).

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  3. “and they usually like to play the stuff that’s not so up-front combat-wise; they like to do the healing, the support, the buffing, and that sort of group management”

    Aaaargh! Froth, twitch, twitch.

    I like the smell of DPS in the morning as much as the next Col. Kilgore, dammit.

    So much for progress. 18 years ago at EuroGenCon I was automatically handed the priest. “Oh good, a girl, you can play the healer.”

    Must…. restrain…. fist of dooom!

  4. WoW certainly does better at attracting female gamers than previous MMOs. It’s hard for me to put a finger on why, however.

    It may be more of an evolution of gaming culture than anything else. Video games themselves have come a long way in terms of “acceptability” in the past ten years, especially as a past-time for girls. It wouldn’t be the first time Blizzard has managed to be in the right place at the right time.

    Taken in that context, however, I think DC Universe is going to be challenged to attract anyone that doesn’t have a serious emotional attachment to their “intellectual property” regardless of gender. Competing with WoW is not a winning scenario – as Warhammer Online (as good as competitor as any) found out.

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