June 24, 2010

An Attempt to Start Anew

Would any of you role-playing ladies in the Chicago area like to participate in a group that will hopefully breathe life into this cause again?

I am trying to bring this back while I still have the time on my hands, so I am hoping that people like the idea of a 20 Sided Women Group to meet up and discuss the things that I have barely touched upon on this blog.  If you think this is a fantastic idea and you're in the Chicago area, please find it here and like it so I know I should start up the group!

Thanks for everyone for being patient once again.  I am finding more free time on my hands so I'm hoping to come back to this more consistently.

April 26, 2010

How to go forward

Hello all,

I am finding myself in a place where I can actually devote more time to this project, but I'm wondering if the interviews are productive at this point.  I am wondering if a survey at first would be good--but how would I do a survey that would actually be honest?  I envision it to be as informative as the Hite report, with probably less controversy.

I'm also wondering if I should see the "relevance" women's studies would have to women in the RPG world.  Start doing some academic research.

But I do have time now to come back to this, I hope.  I'm planning my next step, and you all should get word about it soon.

February 08, 2010

I Feel I Should Explain The Situation

It's been a long time, hasn't it.

When I stopped consistently posting here, things at my job started to get stressful.  Being the sensitive person I am, the worries of others, and my own worries about even just getting paid on time, let alone if I want to stay at my job, would ring in my head.  The way I cope with a lot of stress is to proceed to relax as much as possible.  Unfortunately, this coping strategy has taken me away from this project, and all the other projects I love.  I have no problem doing more work for something I love when I'm not worried about being employed or having a paycheck.  But when I am worried, the only way I feel "normal" and function well is if I only worry about one big thing at a time.

And unfortunately I did not attend to this project.  And I feel awful about it.  This is something I really want to pursue, even to the point of doing an experiment.  But I've failed to do that.  I'm sincerely sorry.

As soon as I know (which will be relatively soon) how things are going at my job, I will be back on this blog talking about gender in RPGs.  It's a topic I'm not going to give up on.  And all the support I've received from the get go reminds me how important this project is.

I hope to be posting consistently on this blog again soon.


      d20 Sapphire

December 29, 2009

Question of the Week #12: It's the holidays!

I've been busy with holiday cheer, and my hope of writing more than once a week has not actually happened.  The holidays aren't officially over, and I'm feeling more festive than serious, so here's a not-so-typical question of the week.

What fantastic RPG swag did you receive this holiday season?

December 22, 2009

Idea for an Experiment

How many of you are familiar with the beautiful tool that is Google Wave?

I started playing a Paranoia game on it, and as I played I realized this would be a great way to experiment with gender in games.  Specifically, if gender is not known, how do people react to each other in an RPG setting?

This is something I hope I have time to pursue, along with all the other projects I listed on here earlier.  If any of you are interested in participating in such an endeavor, I would love to hear in the comments.  I would possibly need someone to help me manage all the data as well as actual participants.

Once again, there are a lot o ideas but nothing concrete yet.  I promise you, this will be concrete in time.  I can't say how soon, but this is something I want to put on the top of my extracurricular list.

December 14, 2009

Question of the Week #12

Let's get back in gear!

This Question of the Week is inspired by an article that The Boyfriend shared with me.  You can read it here.  It regards to sexuality in video games, and how two-dimensional stereotypes unfortunately become the norm.  Thomas Cross talks about how the video game industry markets to a "general consumer", which is theorized to be a heterosexual white male.

With that part of the article in mind, my question is this:

Do you think that the big RPG companies (Wizards, White Wolf, etc) market to a "general consumer" that is only one gender?  Or is that "general consumer" genderless?

This article brings up some good questions that could reveal some issues that crossover to the RPG world.  But the difference of the mediums must be noted.

December 13, 2009

Sorry for the absence

I want to apologize for the week and a half without any kind of post.  My hours at work have increased, I need a break from my extracirriculars for that week.

I don't want this to happen again, and I don't want anyone to think I've abandoned this project.  I have not, and this is still very important to me.

Things to look forward to:

An interview from Wolfcon.  Anna working with Black Sun Games was kind enough to interview with me.  I'm going to get that up ASAP.

Confessions of a Part-Time Sorceress.  I'm going to break down and buy it now that I have a decent income stream.

The thesis.  I need to read it more throughly.  As much as 300 pages from a philosophy grad student aren't the most exciting thing, it's very important to this project to see what others have discovered about women in RPGs.

And hopefully, so much more.

Thank you all for your patience.  It's good to be back.  

December 02, 2009

The Only Girl At The Table

Part of the reason I asked my question of the week (seen in my previous post) is because for the two RPGs that I participated in at WolfCon I was the only girl.  I have never been uncomfortable in this.  I have a long history of a) being the victim of petty girl politics in elementary school and b) tomboy for the majority of my life.  I am very used to being the only girl in a group.

However I began to notice how girls with different experience could easily be turned off by gaming if they were to be the only girl at a table.  It's not that these men did anything outrageous or wrong, but it could easily make a woman uncomfortable.  I began to realize that I was okay with a lot of things a lot of other women may not be okay with.

One thing is jokes.  Guys are more likely to be very crude in jokes.  I am as well, to be perfectly honest.  It's a family trait.  However, not a lot of people are comfortable with genitalia joke with people they only met a few hours ago.  I have friends I've had for years who still don't like me sharing my crude jokes no matter if I am making fun of them, myself, or some imaginary character I just made up.  I can see a lot of my female friends not liking that at all.

I can also see the assumptions that some of the players make about my character being a problem.  For example, someone referred to my character as the "cute girl" without me even describing my character at all.  Yes, she was a girl, but I wasn't even thinking about her attractiveness level.  In fact, if I were to redo this character concept I would probably make her unattractive intentionally, especially f I was making her for a campaign.  It also makes me wonder if the comment was more about me, or more about the assumption that all girls that game want to be a sexier than their real selves.

Also, I find that when I play a female character in a game, her chances of getting hit on go up exponentially than if I play a male character.  I don't know if its because I mostly play with males, who in turn are more likely to think of flirtatious male characters, PC or NPC. It's just something I've noticed through my years of playing games.

All of this was noticed when I was gaming at WolfCon.  I don't want anyone to think that I was offended or put off by any of this behavior.  I was treated with respect and all players were equal at the table.  These habits were just little things that my scare off the average female who may be interested in gaming and hasn't tried it yet.  That might explain why women have been slow to join the RPG community.

November 30, 2009

Question of the Week #11

I will be writing about WolfCon in the next coming days, including a great interview I got while I was there.  I also had some great experiences with people in general, and who could not resist a weekend of board games and RPGS.

WolfCon has partly inspired my question of the week:

If you are thinking of joining a game at a convention, are you put more at ease if you know that you are not the only one of your gender?

I will be writing my response to this question soon, but first your opinions.

November 26, 2009

The WolfCon Plan

Hello all.

As I mentioned before, I am going to WolfCon to get some interviews and to have some general fun.  I was talking with one of the guys who's running the Con and we're going to see if there's a way to get some interest for a discussion group on Sunday.  We'll see if people want to talk there but I'll be taking interviews while I'm there.  Please find me!  I would love to find readers there.

I won't be staying all day at the Con, since it's until 11pm every day.  I'll be there until mid afternoon at least.

I will try tomorrow morning to tell you all how to find me one way or another.  I'll try to wear a "witty" nerd t-shirt of some sort.  I'll take any chance I get to wear t-shirts now that I can't wear them at my job.

Hope to see you at wolfcon!

Edit: For those of you that may be actively looking for me, I decided to go for my "meh" t-shirt today.  I'll hopefully see some of you at con!