Editorial: WAGs

As I have stated on recent Podcasts, I have re-entered that life-sucking, gaming black hole that is World of Warcraft and joined my third large raiding guild. One of the things that struck me about my new guild, aside from the fact that our GM sounds like Tony Soprano’s secret lovechild, is the sheer volume of women in the guild. They are everywhere! This may be a direct correlation to how hardcore, or rather softcore this new guild is. In my own experience, the more competitive a guild is progression-wise, the more serious they are about their raiding, the fewer women there are in their ranks. As a result, this new laid-back guild of mine has far more women in it than I am accustomed to, and some are of a disposition that I am unaccustomed to associating with.

Being what I would consider a serious gamer in and out of WoW, I often find myself battling stereotypes and preconceptions. Now to be fair, when I do demonstrate that I know what I am doing in a raid or a game store, everything is fine, and I am accepted into the warm squishy embrace of gamer and geek culture. It is just unfortunate that I and others have these hurdles to overcome before we receive that acceptance.

Before people become annoyed and stop reading this seemingly feminazi propaganda, I would like to make one thing clear: I blame the chicks.

Which end do I plug in? Tee-hee!
Which end do I plug in? Tee-hee!
I blame the chicks like the ones in my new guild. Of course there are a few exceptions, but the bulk of the females in my guild would never hack it in a more serious or competitive guild. They are a load of self-entitled twerps who want their boyfriends to power-level their characters and give them all of their gold. They insist in banshee-like tones that we delay raids so that they can attend, and then proceed to stand in the damn fire, or be out-performed by the Shaman’s totems. They then giggle their way through an apology for their suckage. These are probably the same girls who stand in the middle of my local game store pestering the staff with inane questions about Wii Fit while their boyfriend plays the demo of the day.

I would like to say to these girls to find new hobbies. Or, if they insist upon gaming, to take responsibility for themselves. Level up your own characters, get your own gear, research games, look up walkthroughs and FAQs if you are stuck. Do not go crying to the nearest penis for help and reassurance. Unfortunately, though, girls like that are probably not reading this site. So cheers to the girls like Thea who are reading and can handle themselves with equal measures of intelligence, respect, and geekyness.

Do I blame people for being skeptical of my knowledge or abilities when they see or hear that I am a female? No, because the overwhelming evidence points to me being a clueless and/or annoying twat. In fact I approach other female gamers with the same apprehension that I am faced with. I blame the women who inspired the stereotypes, and the men who encourage them and defend them.

People like this are ruining games for the rest of us. Burn them!
People like this are ruining games for the rest of us. Burn them!

I realize that this week’s post seems a tad harsh, perhaps even bitter. I do want to clarify the fact that this is not some backhanded attack on any one person. Some women in particular did inspire the post, but each can only be considered a small speck of dirt in the muddy cesspool that I am addressing here. It is not about me or my guild or my game store. It is about why games like Wii Fit are so popular, and why we allow our guilds, clans and link shells to become infected with drama and failure.

No worries, I am hopping off my soapbox now. Rant mode officially off, and I loves you guys!

15 comments

  1. If only. They are usually someone’s girlfriend.

    I really, really fucking hate girls like those mentioned in the post. They are extremely prevalent and deserving of DEATH.

  2. @Ethos: It’s certainly equally prevalent in both WoW and FFXI, so I suspect FFXIV will be no different. In fact it might be worse as more and more casual gamers get into MMOs.

  3. Forgive me if this is a stupid question, but I’ve never played an MMO, so bear with me. If these girls don’t want to play, why are they playing? I may be labeled as “part of the problem”, but I don’t find anything wrong with your typical Wii-fit playing audience. It’s not the game for me, but if they get enjoyment out of it, more power to them. Seems like this issue only really becomes a problem when you’re relying on these people to get through some form of co-op content and they’re mucking it up. But from the description, it’s obvious they don’t really want to be there, so why are they? Did gaming become “trendy” or something and I didn’t notice? Can I cash in on this somehow :D?

  4. @Lusipurr – Oh I expect it to exist. I just have no experience yet with it. So I’ll complain when I get there.

  5. @Ethos: You should complain now, then you’ll be more efficient!

  6. The healing lead in my guild is a girl, and she’s freaking awesome. And I don’t just say that because I’m a tank and always jump in front for my healers!

    I think that as long as there are social groups in games you’ll have players that are interested in being there but not in things like progression. At least in my guild, the “hangers-on” only come along when we do fun, old-content raids. For the rest of the time, they’ll do useful but easy services like fish, cook, gather herbs, mine, etc. to support the “raiders.”

  7. These aren’t really hangers-on in a sense. They are the sort of girls who think that being stupid and behaving like they know nothing are a really good way to be cool and to attract people. Surely you have met girls like this in the real world? I meet them all the time. So far, I have resisted the almost-impossible-to-resist urge to stab them in the face over and over again.

    These girls occasionally also get it into their empty little heads (for whatever reason) that playing video games will also make them seem more cool and trendy. When this is combined with the fact that they are brainless, and when they go into MMOs where guys are (sad to say it, but the truth is harsh) desperate, it is only a matter of time until stuff like this happens. And it happens a lot.

    It isn’t that they ‘don’t want to play’, nor is it that they are ‘hangers-on’, but rather it is that the game qua game is just a social device for them in the way that bars and coffee shoppes are for other people. Except that no one else’s coffee is depending upon the other patrons in the coffee shoppe being competent at drinking without spilling it on their pants.

    The problems are that 1) somehow these brainless twats think that being brainless is not merely socially acceptable but even preferable (I blame this on the media) and 2) the powerful guild leaders in MMOs are all too often (Sorry Lane: stereotypes ahoy!) desperate troglodytes who are willing to put up with any brainless bimbo behaviour if it means a REAL LIVE GIRL will be their online girlfriend.

    Burn them, says I. If you don’t have an IQ of at least 120, get off my internets.

  8. Reason enough for me to steer well clear of MMOs (like I needed another). I know just the type you’re talking about though, where stupid is not so much an affliction as a lifestyle choice.

  9. “They [chicks] are a load of self-entitled twerps who want their boyfriends to power-level their characters and give them all of their gold.”

    This right here is yet another reason why I will not play World of Warcraft. Not to say I haven’t been intrigued when I see others playing it, but I have never been a fan of MMORPGs. My preference in RPGs is the paper and pencil kind, especially the earliest iteration of Dungeons & Dragons. In many ways paper and pencil RPGers have the same issues you’ve opined about in WoW. The good news is that since the groups are usually much smaller than in a WoW guild, there’s not as many girls to beg their boyfriends for gold.

    It’s the rare girl that actually plays a paper and pencil RPG as the game master wants it played, and in my time I’ve encountered a few that actually could play worth a damn. I agree with you when you mention that these girls in your editorial/rant should take responsibility for themselves and actually do the work required with their characters. This advice applies regardless of whether it’s a MMORPG like World of Warcraft, or a paper and pencil RPG like Dungeons & Dragons. However, while it’s true that how people react to us influences how we react to them, it’s not true that you’re clueless, nor is it true that you’re annoying.

    You’re one of those rare girls I mentioned. :)

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