Is there something special about women?

I enjoy EVE — that should be pretty obvious because I’m writing a blog about it. If you enjoy EVE, you should play it. Apparently women, in general, do not enjoy EVE. So why should they play it?

I’m going to set about trying to answer the question posed by CrazyKinux on his blog:

What could CCP Games do to attract and maintain a higher percentage of women to the game. Will Incarna do the trick? Can anything else be done in the mean time? Can we the players do our part to share the game we love with our counterparts, with our sisters or daughters, with the Ladies in our lives? What could be added to the game to make it more attractive to them? Should anything be changed? Is the game at fault, or its player base to blame?

My first reaction to this sequence of questions is, “Why?” Then I moved on; I got more specific. Why do we care who is playing? Isn’t it enough that we are playing and we are enjoying it? Should we really be trying to decipher why a particular subset of gamers (women) aren’t playing this game? Wouldn’t tailoring the game for the people who are not playing it make it less interesting for those of us who are? Why do we have to assign blame?

I don’t think it is a problem that few women play EVE. Sure, I like interacting with women as much as the next guy (I am happily married, by the way), but whether that pilot I just shot up was a woman or a man doesn’t really matter to me; what matters was whether I made it out alive or not, how much fun I had doing it and if my wingmates covered me properly.

Ishkur flying through an explosionWhen I buy a new ship and fittings I don’t really care whether I purchased them from a man or a woman. When I put all of my hard-earned loot up for sale I don’t care whether a man or a woman buys it. When I read a fellow pilot’s blog I follow this same self-professed trend of not caring whether a man or a woman wrote it.

EVE players self select. That is to say, someone who is interested in EVE will play it. Further, it’s not just a casual interest because there’s a fee involved. Someone who enjoys EVE enough to pay a monthly fee will play it. If EVE changes, the people who self select will change (this is why we have million-page ‘I will rage quit’ forum posts surrounding every patch and expansion).

When I sit down to watch a movie with my wife it’s always tough to decide what we’ll watch. She likes romantic comedies but I don’t; I like violent action films but she doesn’t. So, we do one of two things: we compromise or we take turns picking. Maybe I’m just selfish, but I never enjoy the compromise quite as much as when I get to pick. Wouldn’t you rather get to pick than compromise?

Since EVE doesn’t require its players to reproduce there would seem to be no reason to set about trying to somehow mitigate the gender gap. Since EVE is not a dating service, I’m confused about the desire to see more women in the game. I’d rather see more pilots who like EVE for EVE; I think that would ensure that we all continue to like EVE. If more women want to join the fold, great! If not, so what?

More takes on the subject at:

And a not-entered-but-relevant entry at Sweet Little Bad Girl.

~ by paritybit on 2010/04/19.

13 Responses to “Is there something special about women?”

  1. […] Eve’s Parity Bit- Is there something special about women? […]

  2. Well said, maybe a tad harsh, but I can’t disagree. Your final answer is pretty much mine, and most of the others I’ve read, CCP should just make the best game possible and those that will enjoy it will enjoy it. Those that won’t… won’t.

    • Yeah; Keith Neilson lumped us into the same group.

      I just feel that you don’t tailor a game for an audience — especially not if you already have an audience — you just make a great game and the audience is a side effect.

  3. /agree completely.

  4. […] Banters posted regarding this topic make valid points. Some (such as Rantucket , Parity Bit, and EVEOGANDA) have a kind “If you build it they will come” attitude in that they […]

  5. Aah, the trials and tribulations of marital movie compromise. What I wouldn’t give for a wife who wanted to watch rom-coms.

    I have to endure musicals.

  6. […] Is there something special about women? […]

  7. […] Is there something special about women? […]

  8. You grumpy old man you… Just because your stuck on the old ball n’ chain doesnt mean others of us cant mingle with the opposit sex in our internet spaceships whooping it to pron’s on the in-game browser =P.

    On a more real note well said

  9. […] Is there something special about women? […]

  10. […] think I made it clear in my blog entry, but the short version of the answer is that I don’t think CCP should do anything to cater to […]

  11. […] Is there something special about women? […]

  12. […] Banters posted regarding this topic make valid points. Some (such as Rantucket , Parity Bit, and EVEOGANDA) have a kind “If you build it they will come” attitude in that they […]

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