The State of Female Characters in AAA Games

Header Art by Zakurarain.

This time last year I was ecstatic over all the amazing 2016 games showcasing female protagonists. It seemed like things were starting to look up for those who’ve been demanding more diversity from the mainstream, AAA video games. Unfortunately, I realised after this year’s E3 and looking at the Fall to early 2017 lineup I was being a little too optimistic. Not only is there a lack of women, but big games and publishers are actively avoiding putting women in their games. In an industry where more than half of those who play games are women, it’s frustrating that sexism and misogyny keep pushing women to the sides or entirely exclude them from AAA games. From the typical oversexualized portrayal to a more subtle misrepresentation to outright exclusion, there are different ways in which the AAA games in this article (and many others we couldn’t get into here) are a disservice to the potential of video games and the players who love them. Continue reading →

PlayStation E3 2016 Press Conference Recap

PlayStation returned to the Shrine Auditorium in downtown LA for the first time in several years but not only was there a change venue but there was also a change in style. PlayStation’s conference was a huge step away from the usual press conferences where big wigs in suits discuss sales and price changes, announce new partnerships and entertainment initiatives. Previous PlayStation conferences have talked about TV shows like the PlayStation Plus exclusive show Powers or TV streaming services like PlayStation Vue. But this year PlayStation was all about games. The full conference was incredibly short, running just over an hour, and was all trailers. Continue reading →

Ubisoft E3 2016 Conference Recap

Ubisoft celebrates its 30th birthday this year as a company. That’s 30 years of delivering creative, beautiful, imaginative and delightful game experiences. As well as some godawful ones. But hey, nobody is perfect. So this year at E3 Ubisoft came out with some sequels to beloved franchises, some creative new titles (especially for VR) and also some totally new games no one knew about. Unlike competitor’s, Ubisoft’s conference had a very informal tone as developers would come out on stage and sit on the couches and discuss their games with 5th time returning host Aisha Tyler (@aishatyler). So if you missed Ubisoft’s conference or just want a detailed list of the announcements then this list is for you. Enjoy! Continue reading →

Xbox E3 2016 Conference Recap

As E3 officially kicks off with the Xbox conference, there is a lot of catching up for Xbox to do if they want to stay competitive with Sony and the runaway success of the PlayStation 4. Microsoft got off to a stumbling start in 2013 with mixed reviews surrounding their announcement of the Xbox One. The focus on TV, apps, movies, features and basically everything but games really alienated the Xbox faithful who had been enjoying gaming on their Xbox 360. But since Phil Spencer has taken over at Xbox and begun changing the message to “games, games, games” the Xbox One and its ecosystem have been making huge strides in winning back those lost fans. And this year the course correction truly feels like it has worked. Xbox is once again about amazing games in an amazing ecosystem supported by strong indie titles, first party exclusives and the outstanding Xbox Live service. So whether you missed Xbox’s conference or want a detailed list of the announcements: this article is for you. Enjoy! Continue reading →

Bethesda E3 2016 Conference Recap

Hot damn. I’m going to be honest, I was skeptical when I heard Bethesda was hosting another press conference. After their stellar showing at E3 2015, I thought it was a one off. That they were just doing it to start the Fallout 4 hype train and that maybe they would do another one in a couple years when they had another marquee title to announce like Elder Scrolls VI. But they came back this year and they were excellent. So if you missed it or want a detailed list of the announcements this article is for you, enjoy! Continue reading →