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Forums - Gaming Discussion - The Worst 7 Female Stereotypes in Videogames That Need to Go

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As will likely be the common sentiment here, one woman doesn't represent all women. Also, these aren't stereotypes, they are archetypes. Archetypes aren't gender exclusive. There are wussy boys who need saving, know-it-all nerds, very attractive male eye candy, there literally a male "who needs armor anyway" in the same fucking picture you cropped you knob, almost every male video game character is intentionally designed to be an extremely sexy bad ass, and there are just as many male victims in video games as females.

Tails is a male Damsel in Distress. No one cries sexism.
Mario in Luigi's Mansion is a male Damsel in Distress. No one cries sexism.
Dante is meant to be eye candy and a badass. Ain't nobody mad.
Drake is meant to be eye candy and a badass. Ain't nobody mad.

Peach being a damsel in distress isn't meant to suggest or imply that all women are damsels in distress or that Peach isn't a damsel in distress because she's a woman. That's just a character trait specific to her as a character.

This article is so stupid. There is no agreeable basis for it. Just people needing a reason to be pissy about shit.

Well, this is new.


This may come as a surprise, but not every woman is a confident, independent, modestly dressed, honorable person. Some women in real life do fall into those categories. I get the need for more positive representations of women, but that doesn't mean we can't every do anything that shows women as less than perfect.

Rather than listing archetypes that shouldn't be in games I'd be much more interested if they made a list of those that should...

Maybe half of these have a bit of merit to them. Bikini armor has always been stupid, female characters that exist primarily for eye candy and fan service can be demeaning, as can the lack of power given to others. That said, limiting personalities and backgrounds is ridiculous. God forbid the world's oldest profession exist in fictional worlds, too...

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They aren't stereotypes, they're archetypes.

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Devs should create the game the way they want to envision it. If it uses the examples mentioned in OP - so be it.


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I disagree. Honestly don't see a thing wrong with this. Devs are able to do what they want, if they want to make a damsel in distress, cool, if they want to make a female character who is stronger than literally every other character in gaming ever, so be it. It's their game, they can do whatever they want, and not have to listen to people who try to stop their vision for that game.

Another day, another whiny SJW article. Let's see...

#7 - The Damsel in Distress
Hasn't this been sort of diminished already? Is this a call for developers to completely stop having players rescue females for the next 20 years to even things out? Rescuing someone is a basic trope in storytelling, and there's a 50% chance the rescuee is going to at least look female. Keep whining.

#6 - The Mary Sue Know-It-All
Well, Hermione is there for a reason, these people do exist in real life. The only reason females persist to have this role, or used to anyway, is because they were rarely the main protagonist. Again, developers are making a conscious effort to diversify game protagonists these days, and I can't remember the last know-it-all I've encountered in a game.

#5 - The Prostitute
I'll cut this one short - games are trying harder than ever to replicate reality, and have been emboldened to include sexuality with a flawed rating system. Prostitution is the worlds oldest trade, and it isn't going away.

#4 - Eye Candy
Characters tend to be far prettier than necessary in every visual medium. This is some basic reality. The only time I've heard people complain about characters being "too pretty" is when 'the imp' retained his nose in Game of Thrones, but I think most were more than okay with him keeping it there...

#3 - Who Needs Armor Anyway?
This has always been a sticking point for me, for both sexes. In settings that show some characters wearing armor, it always bugs me when the mains run around the battlefield wearing basically no armor (or no clothing, in the case of females). The women who do armor up tend to have 'armored boobs' which would be about as bad as wearing no armor (since any blade aimed at her chest would glide straight down the breast to the heart). I understand not wearing helmets, because it's easier to tell characters apart when you can see their faces / hair, but otherwise I do wish they would armor the fuck up.

That said, this is art, and artists can do what they want. I love the Conan franchise, and in the books he does throw on armor where possible, but I can't deny the art surrounding it has popularized nearly-naked dudes and even more naked women in fantasy settings. This is a personal qualm that shouldn't be enforced on artists.

#2 - The Absurdly Sexy Badass
Kind of similar to point 3 & 4. I wish superheroes were depicted more "realistically" than they are. There's no reason Batman should look more ripped than Dwayne Johnson, a guy who spends a huge chunk of every day with weights. Similarly, not every female needs a huge bust and super model looks. I always thought it was funny that MJ Watson specifically became a model, where basically every female super in the Marvel line could have just as easily.

But again, just like point 3, this is art, and the artist does what he or she wants. If I want to change the popular way of doing things, it's up to me (or an artist I pay) to do it differently and be successful enough to influence an entire industry.

#1 - The Victim
Kind of similar to point 7. This is another trope that isn't going away, because everyone has some shit in their past, and again, games are trying to replicate reality more these days. Are there actually more female characters with tragic pasts than male...?