Player One, Fight! The Rise of Female Gamers

Women in gaming is a big business – and it’s set to grow bigger than ever.

In the past, when you would see photos of gamers, they were always picturing young guys playing computer games or high fiving over a Playstation – but not anymore! Like the ever-advancing online gaming technology, things are changing at a rapid pace. The number of female gamers is on the rise, and gamer gals are now spending more than £1 billion on games, accessories, and hardware each year.

Video games are certainly not just for men or little kids. A recently released game called ‘Uncharted: The Lost Legacy’ features two female leads – Indian-Australian treasure hunter Chloe and South African mercenary Nadine, and it surpassed all sales expectations and won rave reviews. With more titles featuring female protagonists, and websites, blogs and entire conventions dedicated to female gamers, the video game industry is taking notice.

Women’s online gaming habits do tend to be different than men’s, with female gamers preferring to play solitary games on their cell phones rather than mic’d up and with their friends. They are also much more likely to prefer mobile gaming on their phone rather than on consoles or computers, meaning that they can game on the go!

Are you a female gamer? Odds are, yes!

According to a 2017 Google Play and Newzoo study, a massive 65% of women between the ages of 10 to 65 play online games on their cell phones! This shows that women make up nearly 50% of all mobile gamers, but sadly, many report feeling underrepresented and even unwelcome in the gaming world. That is starting to change, and more and more women are carving out a space for themselves, shouting their love of games loud and proud.

Refinery29 recently investigated the ways that women interact with the world of gaming, conducting interviews with online gamers, players, and video game industry experts. One of the first things they discovered is that women are attracted to game experiences that have little or no upfront cost, which explains why they are so drawn to online gaming on their phones.

Once they experience the joy, fun, and skill-building that come with playing phone games, they are more likely to move onto other online games. They are also more willing to make in-app purchases in order to enhance their overall gaming experience.

Casual games have attracted many women who have never played a single video game in their life. Attracted by media buzz and recommendations from friends and colleagues, games such as Pokemon Go, Candy Crush Saga, Matchington Mansion, and even Words With Friends are reporting record downloads, and women represent a big chunk of the players downloading these games.

Smartphones are convenient gaming ‘consoles’

We can all relate – traditional consoles, while fun and nostalgic, are starting to go the way of the dinosaur. Gaming on desktop computers, laptops, and most of all, mobile phones, is so much more convenient than gaming on traditional platforms.  This has opened the world of gaming up to women in a bigger way than ever before – the tech barriers are gone.

More women are enjoying games of chance on their phones.

After all, everyone has a smartphone in their pocket! This ubiquity has also led to the rise of women enjoying casual gambling on their phones, drawn to the thrills and challenge of skilled gambling on sports games and events. That’s right –alongside the rise in online gaming, sports betting is also on the rise for women.

Watching a major sporting event and taking all of the various factors that can affect the outcome into account is a skill that depends of research and thought. Therefore, it makes sense that some women would want to cash in on their prowess and make an online bet on their preferred team or individual. Have you ever placed a bet online on a sports event?

Are you a female gamer?

If you are a female gamer, you might not realize just how many other gamers out there are out there who are sneaking a few minutes here and there on their phones. It’s clear that online gaming is here to stay – do you think that is a positive or a negative? What changes would you like to see in terms of the state of women in gaming?

Have your say in the comments below.

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