Women in gaming

How do the best of the best represent women in games? We’re looking at E3 winners (Best PC Game, Best Console Game, Best of Show 1998-2018) and Game Awards nominees/winners (2003-2018) to find out.

© Capcom

Data analysis

Role-playing games help the numbers (both Massively Multiplayer Online RPGs and traditional RPGs)
The last ten years has seen a marked increase in games featuring playable female characters
But game covers don’t always back up these good intentions

Game covers often feature men in prominent positions on the front of the box. But fewer than a third of the games we’ve looked at afford women the same courtesy.

What’s more, only 11 of 93 game covers (11.83%) depict women as the subject of the cover, or with a share of the focus (Resident Evil 2).

Then there are examples like San Andreas, sporting a blonde-haired woman in a come-hither pose. Degrading at best, harmful at worst?

Does a woman feature on the front cover?
How are woman featured on front covers?

There is no single game that is responsible for carrying the full burden of representation; that needs to be shared by all developers, all publishers, and all game players.”

Alayna M Cole MD of Queerly Represent Me

Games in Focus

5 game covers that give women good exposure

The Last of Us, Tomb Raider, Celeste, World of Warcraft, Resident Evil 2

© Naughty Dog, Square Enix, Matt Makes Games, Blizzard Entertainment, Capcom

I do not believe there is an inherent problem with women being viewed as sexy, however when it is the only version of women shown, it strips us of our depth and limits us to serving as purely visual objects."

Jay-Ann Lopez Creator of Black Girl Gamers

Read next

Back home