Gaming has never been labeled as something that only men can do; however, among the key demographics plugging in to play, the majority has always been men. This is steadily changing though as in 2021, 45 percent of all gamers in the United States were women, this was up from 41% the year before. 

This increase in female gamers is in no way reflected by the number of female coders and game developers in the industry. In a recent study, it was revealed that only 11% of game developers and 3% of coders were female. As such, this means that even though there are a lot of women playing games, there isn’t much female representation in game development. 

What Can the Gaming Industry Do? 

The long-term goal is to get more women involved in game design and creation so that there is representation across the board during developmental stages. In the short term, though, gaming companies need to be aware of how games can be created so that they appeal to all genders. 

This is mainly necessary for games that contain heavy narratives. A lot of titles out there that don’t rely on storyline are already fairly universal in their appeal. For instance, consider the number of classic card games like roulette, poker and baccarat that are currently available online. Due to the fact they rely on basic casino rules that have been established for over 100 years, there is no narrative or storyline necessary to encourage people to play them. 

The popularity of these games shows that they are already universal in their audience. In fact, there are now so many online casinos played by people that comparison sites have been created that help new gamers choose which appeals to them the most. If you are interested in picking up such online gaming then here’s a great place to get started

Developing Narrative-Driven Games 

When it comes to games that rely on narrative and story, these need to be amended in the development stages so that they appeal to both women and men. This means that games need to have a range of different characters in them so that there is no bias when it comes to who different players can see themselves. Not only that but the language used has to be true to characters and real human emotion, as opposed to leaning into bravado as you see in a lot of games. 

Finally, the design of characters within games needs to be consistent across genders. There have been a lot of jokes made about the difference between armour for female and male characters in sci-fi and fantasy games, and these inconsistencies need to be addressed. When characters are designed with the male gaze, that gaming company are shutting out a potentially large part of their audience. 



Gaming Needs to Appeal to All Genders 

When it comes to gaming consumers, the number of men and women is starting to level out but the same cannot be said for the people who make said games. As such, it means that different titles don’t represent all genders and a large part of the gaming audience is shut out as a result. There clearly has to be changed within the industry and this should be gaming’s long-term goal. For now, narrative-driven games need to be altered in their development stage so that characters are more reflective of our diverse society. 

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