An article from conservative news site Breitbart plays up comments made by both feminist media critic and Feminist Frequency founder Anita Sarkeesian and Feminist Frequency writer Jonathan McIntosh about CD Projekt RED's The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and the response from Forbes writer Erik Kain. Over the weekend Sarkeesian offered her two cents on the way The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt portrays and treats women in a couple of tweets.
EA Sports announced today that FIFA 16 will - for the first time- give players the option of playing as a women in its long running soccer game series (or football if you are in Europe).
According to EA Sports, the game will feature a total of 12 Women’s National Teams from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, England, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Spain, Sweden and the USA.
Rep. Katherine Clark (D-MA) once again called on the Department of Justice to investigate cyber crimes (online threats, swatting, etc.) aimed at women, and to announce that the House of Representatives has formally supported her request to "intensify investigation and prosecution of severe online threats against women."
GaymerX and MidBoss announced a new batch of special guests for its upcoming gaming event GX3: Everyone Games. Feminist media critic Anita Sarkeesian, games writer and Hey Ash Whatcha Playin’ co-host Anthony Burch, and STILL BLACK creator Kortney Ziegler will be attending the annual LGBTQ+ friendly event as Bosses of Honor. Bosses of Honor are special high-profile guests that are a part of or supportive of the diverse community that GaymerX events focus on.
GamesBeat has an in-depth interview with International Game Developers Association president Kate Edwards, who talks at length about GamerGate, diversity in the workplace, Intel's investment in bringing more women into the tech and gaming industry and a whole lot more.
The interview was conducted on-stage last week during GamesBeat Summit, with VentureBeat Insight's director of marketing technology Stewart Rogers serving as the interviewer.
Women in Technology International (WITI) announced its 2015 Women In Technology Hall of Fame Honorees will be inducted at the 21st Annual Summit taking place May 31-June 2 at the Doubletree by Hilton San Jose, California. The Summit will focus on IoT (Internet of Things), big data, leadership, cloud, community brand building and how women in technology are enhancing everyday life.
Daybreak Game Studio has added female players models into its online zombie apocalypse survival game H1Z1. The new update to the game currently available on Steam through its early access program gives players the option of choosing a male or female player model, adds first-person Battle Royale mode (which serves as a hardcore mode for the game for the time being), and a higher resolution version of the interior for the Off Roader. The update grants every player a celebratory in-game Daybreak T-shirt featuring the new company logo.
Minecraft players finally get a default female character model option. Developer Mojang announced today that the new "Alex" character skin will be available for the console version of the game on April 29, while the mobile versions of the game will have to wait until this summer.
Mojang describes the Alex skin as having "thinner arms, redder hair, and a ponytail."
Women in Technology International (WITI) announced keynote speakers and session topics for its 21st Annual Summit taking place later this year. The Summit will focus on IoT (Internet of Things), big data, leadership, cloud, community brand building and how women in technology are enhancing everyday life.
On April 7th The Fine Young Capitalists (TFYC) and Bogota, Colombia-based developer Autobotika launched Afterlife Empire on Steam Greenlight, along with a 15-second teaser video from the game (which appears to be the opening cinematic), a handful of screenshots, and lots of information about what players can expect when the game gets released in the second quarter of this year.
Andrew Eisen has launched a new video this morning extolling the virtues of Anita Sarkeesian's Tropes vs. Women in Games video series. Personally, I think the best thing Andrew says in the video (to paraphrase) is that Sarkeesian's video series demonstrates that video games have finally arrived as an artform worthy of mainstream, real-world criticism. That's a fact all of us should accept and embrace.
You can check out the video to your left or on YouTube.
The first game to be highlighted in Feminist Frequency creator Anita Sarkeesian's new series of videos, Positive Female Characters, is Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP. According to the video (which you can watch to your left), Sarkeesian chose Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP because of the way of the novel way it presents the protagonist in the game.
FEMICOM Museum announced plans to host its first-ever game jam. The first FEMICOM Museum Game Jam will take place April 15 - 21. The theme of the jam will be inspirational femme / feminine games, software, hardware, and toys of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.
Those new to developing games are encouraged to participate and FEMICOM Museum suggests tools such as Gamemaker: Studio, Phaser, Scratch, Twine, and Unity to build your game - though I would imagine you can use whatever you like.
Four days remain to donate to the Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for the Pixelles Game Incubator 2015/2016. While the crowdfunding effort has already generated $8,716 CAD - well above its $5,000 CAD goal and beating all of its funding stretch goals - the money put towards the campaign will help Pixelles Montreal have even more resources to realize its goal: empowering young girls and women to "learn, love, and create games."
Intel isn't the only company working to get more women and minorities into the tech field. Apple is putting $50 million towards initiatives that promote and pursue that goal. The investment is the fulfillment of a promise Apple CEO Tim Cook made in 2014 after the company's diversity report was published. That report showed that Apple's workforce is mostly made up of white males.
A free batch of downloadable content over the weekend for Paradox Interactive' grand historical strategy game Europa Universalis IV had the unintended consequence of whipping some of its users into a frenzy over the plight of men. The content was released for free to celebrate International Women’s Day (March 8th) and adds 100 of the greatest women in history into the game.
Yesterday during the bittersweet #1ReasonToBe panel, Gamasutra editor-at-large Leigh Alexander and entertainment and culture writer (for publications such as Boing Boing, Wired, and more) Laura Hudson announced the launch of a new site dedicated to gaming with a focus on giving a voice to women and minority voices. The site, which you can find a placeholder for at offworld.com, is called Offworld.
A brief message on this placeholder site explains what it is all about and why it is so important that it exists.
In addition to announcing deals with Codemasters, Funcom and Ubisoft to use its technology in upcoming games and a new game developer friendly portal at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco this week, Intel revealed a number of initiatives it is backing to promote more diversity in the video games industry.
Vox Media's video game focused site Polygon has hired The Mary Sue founder Susana Polo. The appointment shows that Polygon wants to ramp up its coverage of all things non-gaming, and perhaps bring a bit more focus to topics that women are interested in.
"We've been covering entertainment for a little bit," Polygon's Editor in Chief Chris Grant told FishbowlNY. "We've dabbled. There's a lot of adjacency. Batman isn't just a game, it's also movies and comic books."
We all get that sex sells, but there's a reason that parties involving strippers and other male-focused titillation might be looked down upon in this day and age. After all it's no longer the 1990s and people expect party organizers to show some sensitivity to the growing number of women that attend game industry trade events like the Game Developers Conference.
Developer NetherRealm will take a more realistic approach to the way it presents female combatants in its upcoming game Mortal Kombat X. In other words, female characters won't have gigantic breasts and other ridiculously overblown body features. This, says production manager Spiro Anagnostakos, is in the name of making Mortal Kombat X more realistic.
Legendary game developer Brenda Romero and outspoken writer Leigh Alexander will host this year's #1ReasonToBe session at the Game Developers Conference next month in San Francisco. Alexander is the Editor at Large at Gamasutra, while Romero is Program Director/Game Developer at UC Santa Cruz and co-founder of Romero Games.
Just a reminder: Tonight's episode of Law & Order SVU features a storyline dealing with video games, online harassment, threats, and a female game developer under siege by a group of gamers out to do her harm.
Here's the synopsis for the episode set to air tonight (9 PM ET) on NBC:
Yosuke Hayashi, the leader of developer Team Ninja and producer for Dead or Alive 5: Last Round, says that the controversy over the series' portrayal of women is likely a clash of cultures. Speaking to MCV, Hayashi said that any controversy over the series’ approach to female representation may be the result of a cultural clash.
Feminist Frequency founder Anita Sarkeesian will receive the Harvard Humanist of the Year 2014 Award on Sunday, February 8 at the Harvard University Science Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The annual award is handed out by the Humanist Community at Harvard University. The Humanist Community at Harvard (or HCH as it likes to be called) is "dedicated to building, educating, and nurturing a diverse community of Humanists, atheists, agnostics, and the nonreligious at Harvard and beyond."
Feminist Frequency has announced its plans for the new year and in addition to new entries in its Tropes vs Women series, it will also start two new video projects. The first is a new series that examines the representations of men and masculinity in video games and the second a miniseries presenting examples of positive female characters in video games.
Tropes vs. Women in Video Games creator Anita Sarkeesian has announced plans for Feminist Frequency 2015, which includes an expansion of the videos and topics the organization already makes that focus on the portrayal of women in video games. But what about how men are portrayed? Sarkeesian will introduce a new series discussing "men and masculinity" in video games in addition to a new miniseries presenting positive examples of female characters in video games.