Game On, Girls: Navigating Sex Positivity and the Objectification Minefield in the Gaming World

by Lara Solace
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Hey there, gamer gals! Super Techno Girl here, bringing you another spicy yet important chat from the intersection of gaming and feminism. Today, we’re addressing the big, glittery elephant in the room: sex positivity and the often-unwanted side effect of objectification in our beloved gaming universe. Buckle up, it’s about to get real.

So, let’s start with the basics: Sex positivity. It’s the radical (yes, radical, because who knew owning your body could be so revolutionary!) idea that all sex, as long as it’s consensual and respectful, is a good thing. It’s about exploring your desires, understanding your body, and not being ashamed of seeking pleasure. Embracing sex positivity is empowering, like landing the perfect headshot or mastering the most complex of combos.

But here’s where things get complicated. As women in the gaming world, we’re often walking a tightrope. On one side, we have our own personal empowerment, our sex positivity. On the other, we’re faced with the societal objectification that’s been a thorny issue in the gaming community for years.

Let’s face it, the gaming world has a long history of objectifying women, from overly sexualized female characters to the disturbingly common harassment female gamers face. Take the case of Twitch streamer Sweet_Anita, who has been dealing with a relentless stalker for years. Despite numerous reports, the law enforcement’s response has been, to put it mildly, less than satisfactory.

Or consider the infamous “GamerGate” controversy, where women in the industry faced severe online harassment. Zoe Quinn, a game developer, was a prime target, enduring threats and doxxing simply for existing as a woman in the gaming world.

These experiences can be daunting and downright scary, making the gaming world feel more like a haunted level with no escape. However, while acknowledging these issues, it’s essential to remember that our sexuality is ours, not a weapon for others to use against us.

Being a sexy, confident gamer girl? Hell yes, if that’s what you’re into! But remember, it’s your choice, not a requirement to fit into the gaming community. Be comfortable, be you, whether that’s in a cute cosplay outfit or your favorite baggy sweatpants.

And to the trolls who can’t handle women owning their sexuality while kicking ass in the gaming world, I’ve got one thing to say: Game over, boys, it’s our turn now.

For those dealing with harassment, resources like the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative offer support and advice. And let’s continue to rally together, using our voices (and our formidable gaming skills) to create a safer, more inclusive space for all gamers. Because we’re not just here to play the game, we’re here to change it.

Sexism in Gaming: From Pixelated Princesses to Power Players

Once upon a tech-time, the princess was always in another castle, waiting for a certain Italian plumber to come to the rescue. It’s no secret that the early years of gaming were dominated by male heroes, while female characters often fell into the damsel-in-distress or sidekick trope. This fascinating study sheds light on the evolution of female characters in video games.

Power Up: The Rise of Female Game Developers

We’ve come a long way from the days of gendered games. Female game developers are leveling up, smashing through the glass ceiling, and creating some seriously kick-ass games. Did you know that the legendary game Portal was designed by a woman, Kim Swift? Here’s a fantastic list of games created by female developers that are worth checking out.

Princesses No More: Games that Get it Right

Shoutout to the games that are changing the narrative and doing a power slide right into our hearts. Games like Horizon Zero Dawn, with its strong protagonist Aloy, and Celeste, a platformer dealing with mental health issues, are redefining how women are portrayed in gaming. Here are some more examples of games that are getting it right.

Game Over, Trolls: Countering Toxic Gaming Culture

It’s no secret that navigating the gaming world can feel like running a gauntlet for women, thanks to a small but loud subset of toxic players. The psychological impact of this toxicity can’t be ignored, as this study highlights. But it’s not all doom and gloom! Communities are fighting back, with stricter moderation policies and improved reporting systems to make gaming a more inclusive space.

Finding Your Tribe: Gaming Communities Promoting Positivity

Online communities are the heart and soul of the gaming world. And guess what? There are plenty of spaces that foster a sex-positive, inclusive culture. Communities like The Athena Alliance and Black Girl Gamers are making waves and creating safe spaces for gamers everywhere.

Level Up: Empowerment Through Avatars

In the virtual world, you can be whoever you want to be. This freedom allows for a unique form of self-expression and empowerment, in the form of AI avatars. But it also comes with its own challenges, as this thought-provoking piece explores.

Respawning a New World: Actionable Steps for an Inclusive Gaming World

We all have a role to play in creating a more inclusive gaming world. Support female developers, stand up against toxic behavior, and advocate for better representation in games. Here’s a handy guide on how you can make a difference.

Game on, girls! The world of gaming is what we make it. Let’s make it awesome.

PS it’s worth reading Kierkegaard’s Seducer’s Diary; it talks about seduction, longing, the object of attraction as the thing that resists, who is really at fault – the girl who goes away or the guy who pursues. It’s kind of early incel stuff but there’s a lot of philosophy in it.

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