Jenkins essay “‘Complete Freedom of Movement’: Video Games as Gendered Play Space” convinced me that 13 years ago there was gender segregation in the digital world of video games on who the games where made for, girls or boys. From my 15 year of experience playing hundreds of video games I never thought of games being gender biased till now. To me girls didn’t play them because they were just not into video games and would rather play with dolls. Jenkins states that traditional culture in video games is not fixing gender bias games but rather making the gender segregation stay (p. 13).
Jenkins main claim is that pop culture is reinforcing conventional categories of gender and that the division between boys and girls needs to stop. Jenkins essay was shocking and opened my eyes into what the world of video games once was, and demonstrated that game designers were creating protagonist in video games separated male and female: For example the girl protagonist is into the domestic world and boy is being adventurous and free. But is the gender segregation still happening today, after 13 years?
As time has pass I believe that pop culture and gaming companies are more aware of the gender segregation and know that because of the segregation boy don’t have a strong emotional development and girls are restricted their imagination and the female freedom out of the domestic world. The video games companies understand the importance of gender segregation in their games because girls were being affected by their ignorance 13 years ago. Female video games trapped them in their traditional roles: a world of domesticities, emotion, caring and a repetitive world with limitations of adventure.
According to Jenkins “Girls need to learn how to explore ‘unsafe’ and ‘unfriendly’ spaces, and to experience the ‘complete freedom of movement’… to help them develop the self-confidence and competitiveness demanded for a professional women. (p. 725)” The bias video game companies are preventing females from becoming adventurous, aggressive and fearless, three aspects of life necessary for adults thrive in their job and defeat the competition. The video game companies also the gender segregation affects boys too.
Jenkins states that boy games are design to attract them by giving the male adventure thrills, taking risks, courage and testing their skills against other friends (715). In addition, boy games have many things offer, but have minimal emotional expression, of love, and caring. Signifying that males are becoming more aggressive, impactions and less emotionally intelligent and can lead to Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD if gender bias in video games is not fix quickly. The awareness of bias in video games is making companies with new ways of designing games to stop the segregation.
One of the advances video games have made from the past is because of technology. Technology is expanding the digital world of the game by making cities, countries and even new worlds and making games free of movements in the world. Also technology is helping make more realistic and games now have the capability to change as you play. Another improvement over the last 13 years of video games that is helping stop gender bias is that in almost all games today the player able to build their own character from head to toe. Fable 2” is games where I see no favoritisms among genders and a game that shows most if not all the aspect that breakdown the conventional categories of gender.
“Fable 2” is a game for male and female that takes place hundreds of years ago in the fictional land filled with large castles, cities. The first “fable” video game was about 15 year ago and was geared to the boys. The gaming was based on the traditional male role of being free and adventurous and fearless of enemies. Fable 2” is the proof that there is less gender bias in the games today than years ago because it can offer both genders emotion, adventure, fear and a world with no movement limitations. The differences from the first fable and fable 2 games is that now the player may choose to be either male or female as main characters.
Microsoft Gaming Studio, the company that made “fable 2” when beyond the norms of other companies by letting the player choose a character’s sexuality, allowing for marriage and sexual relationships with male and female. Fable 2” is a great example that today’s pop culture is not reinforcing the separation between genders but actually changing things around by breaking down the conventional categories of gender. This game teach young girls to be girly, cook, make dress, paint and take care of animal but also breaks the barriers that girls have and making them more adventurous, confident, brave and teaches girls how to change their environment and because of this females have strong foundation for their future.
Fable 2” will teach any gender playing the game how to care, love, developing emotions and sensitivity. For example, the main character starts the game as a child and is given a dog which becomes the characters best friend throughout the game. The dog follows the player almost everywhere, the player can teach it tricks, and to fight enemies and when the dog gets injured the player is require to care and nurture the dog. The emotions and caring for each other and the love of the relationship between and animal and men are represented in this part of the game.
In the game the player can help the any person that needs help in any way, ether by helping someone build a house or by giving the needy food. So thanks to the awareness of companies in the gaming industries for changing games from violent and adventurous and making the game more emotion and sensitive, caring. In conclusion, “Fable 2” offers females the freedom that males get that at one point was limited to girls and offers boys emotional sensitivity. Females are not going to have that trill of going outside and being wild and adventures because everything around them is restricted into a world of sensitive.
And the boy is not going to have many emotions, sensitivity, love because everything around them is about adventure being brave and fearless. Jerkins talks about the differences between the outside spaces of girls and the spaces that boys have. He explains that because of the play role that girls and boys are born into girls are from the start left behind in the areas of interaction with the environment getting fit and learning how to do things with their hand and work. This enforces the breakdown of gender segregation and draws the map into what future games need to be like.
If more games would be like this I personally believe girls and boys would be almost equal in all aspects of life. Gender preferences play a big role in what children are drawn to when it comes to the children’s future. “Fable 2” is just a start for obtaining gender free future of bias video games. From personal experience playing all type of game now I see what Jenkins was talking about on his essay and I’m more aware of gender segregation in video games and have become convince that companies like Microsoft Gaming Studio is working to stop designers from making more bias games.
January 9, 2018
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