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Previous entry: Name that Mushroom

Sunday, 03 December 2006
Guitar Heroine

guitar hero 2

This weekend has ended in stunning form as I was awarded some brownie points from Laura at Name that Mushroom. I have parked these on my Links Page for the time being while I decide what to spend them on…  Laura also wrote a flattering review of my blog. Last month I made it onto the Daily Maybe’s 100 best green bloggers (by default no doubt) so I’d better start earning that one by posting some more green stuff!

This weekend I had to take Scarlett and Pinkie shopping. Pinkie needed a dress for a party on Saturday night, while Scarlett needed some boots and stuff for her forthcoming school trip to Russia (where the average December temperature is minus 12).  Scarlett was was in London and couldn’t go shopping on Saturday, and so I ended up going twice to Bluewater on consecutive days: once each with the two sprogs. 

I noticed driving in and out that the water next to the shopping centre is not blue, but more of the grey greasy green associated with the Limpopo River and the water found in the bottom of quarries.  Anyhow, in one of the halls there were these guys demonstrating the new Guitar Hero II game (pictured above). This is quite a clever (if noisy) thing to do in the weeks running up to Christmas (besides Bluewater is noisy at the best of times and headache-inducing with the throngs at this time of the year). 

What was interesting to me (and is evident in the photograph above) is that all the spectators drawn to this game were

boys young men.  The game does not appear to be violent or degrading of women, it simply involves playing notes or chords (or perhaps simulating these) in time to visual cues on the screen.  In general the game reminded me a bit of the dance-mat game except that the action was with the fingers on the strut of a (fake) guitar rather than with the feet on a dance mat.  In fact to me the game seemed a bit lame. Perhaps the girls

young women had better things to do.

I started wondering if there are studies about gender-biases in computer games. There must be loads, but I couldn’t really find anything along the lines of my own thoughts.  The BBC wrote last August about how marketting managers in the games industry were waking up to an untapped market of female games. (They might think about giving a game a more gender-neutral name?).  Another place for me to start might be the artist Mary Flanagan, who works in and writes about the industry.

Posted by bigblue on 03/12/2006 at 10:27 PM
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