June 13, 2011 by Jennifer Jenson and Suzanne de Castell
Jennifer Jenson is Associate Professor of Pedagogy and Technology in the Faculty of Education at York University. Suzanne de Castell is the Professor of Curriculum and Instruction in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University and a Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Education, York University.
Previously viewed as a hobby only pursued by, and suitable for, teenaged boys, video games are exploding in presence and popularity with the constant release of new genres (mobile, social networking games), peripherals (Wiimote, instruments, Kinect), and devices (iPhone), helping to spread gaming culture. Despite recent industry-wide initiatives to ‘level the playing field’ and attract new types of players, video game culture, as well as the video game industry, continues to be dominated by young men. What are the experiences of female gamers? And what about the experiences of women who design and produce games?