Our Railguns, Ourselves by QGz|trillian
5 years ago, being a female gamer was a novelty. The number of women getting online was on the rise and those who ventured into the world of online gaming were becoming more vocal. GirlFragger would hop on a server and take a chance at being ridiculed, hit-on or praised. As time passed, the female demographic became a target and, in the midst of the growing popularity of online (and LAN) tournaments, female-only competitions started popping up.
There have never been an overwhelming number of these competitions, but as time passes the outcry at such events grows louder. People question the necessity, as female gamers become more commonplace. Women claim segregation and men claim sexism. And yet the number of female tournaments, while miniscule in comparison with major events, is on the rise.
Recently, The CPL announced an all-female tournament with one of the most substantial prizes in the history of female gaming… $2,000 and a new, decked-out machine. The prizes trickle down to 6th place with a total of $5,000 cash being offered. No sooner was this tournament announced than the message boards started hopping. Shugashack had almost 300 posts by the end of the first day and comments ranged from insulting to thought provoking. And during all of this discussion I began to think, “What exactly do I feel about all-female tournaments and the singling out of female gamers?”
Female Clans vs. Female Tournaments
Some would say I am biased. Being a member of an all-female clan does give me a different perspective on things, but I’ve moved past worrying about hypocrisy and moved on to determine what I actually feel. First, let me qualify. I was worried that if I didn’t completely support all-female tournaments, I would be contradicting my involvement in an all-female clan. But I’ve also realized they are two different monsters. You join a clan because you are comfortable with the people and hopefully because you can see yourself learning and growing as a part of that team. You join a tournament to win. One is for fun and one is for prizes/glory. One is a gathering of friends and the other is all about competition. Don’t get me wrong, I am a highly competitive person who wants my clan to succeed, but you also should always game with the people you enjoy and are comfortable with. If you prefer to have female teammates… more power to ya. :c)
So, about these events… are they wrong or right? Is there an easy answer to that question?