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Are There More Women Gamers Than We Think?

Female Gamer

Last month I wrote an article entitled “Girlfriends Against Video Games” that focused on Kansas State University support group by the same name. I opened the article with the following statement:

I don’t know much about what women want – I mean, what man does? However, I can tell you a little about what women don’t want. They don’t want you ogling other women, They don’t want to watch sports, and they sure as hell don’t want to play World of Warcraft with you.

After awhile I started wondering – how true is this? Are more women inclined to play WOW (and other video games for that matter) than one might think?

While searching the web for more information, I came across – a site by gamers and for gamers that focuses on all aspects of gaming from reviews to gender focused articles. Despite their name, WomenGamers encourages everyone to get involved – regardless of gender. Their mission statement reads – “our ultimate aim is to establish an environment where women gamers can be integrated with the rest of the gaming community.”

The site makes some interesting claims – namely that “there is only a 7%-15% margin between the number of males who play games versus the number of females.”

They also noted that – “According to IDSA, women make up 43% of all PC gamers and 35% of console gamers-and our numbers are rising. And women gamers are more likely to play online games (53%) than male gamers (46%).

I went ahead and checked the IDSA /ESA website (Entertainment Software Association) for more information. Lo and behold, their annual report 2005 Essential Facts About The Video Game Industry (PDF), revealed that the ratio of male to female gamers is currently 55% to 43% respectively. This figure is similar to the ratio of online gamers which is 56% male 43% female.

If this is anywhere near true – it is certainly eye-opening information.

So if you are a female gamer that is feeling marginalized – take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. And if you are a guy looking for a woman who shares your love of gaming – there is hope.

Posted by Sean


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