Real Talk By: Ms. Throwback
For those of you that have living under a rock, or otherwise sucked into various intense gaming experiences. (Yes I heard, Dark Souls II and Titanfall is out.) The gaming community is now composed of 47% women. That means we are doing some pretty nifty things whether you notice or not. Games and girls, they just go together like pie and ice cream, and even though we have succeeded in comprising almost half the industry as players, women are still only 15% of the sex that work in the industry. That’s why we present this list of super awesome gaming chicks to satisfy the thirst of both worlds.
6. Carol Shaw, Game Programmer and Designer, Activision
Carol broke the ice in 1978 and became the first female to design and program a video game. Even back then, when she might have made up less than 1% of the industry, she was busting down walls. Carol created several console titles including River Raid II for the Atari console, her crowing achievement. Even after the video game crash of the late 80’s Carol came back for another round, something we should all appreciate.
5. Kim Swift, Game Designer, Valve and Airtight Games
While she was a student Kim came up with a game she titled Narbacular Drop in 2005. Don’t recognize the name? It involved a princess who moved portals around. Leave it to Valve to come up with the all original renamed version in 2007 titled Portal. That’s right, valve discovered Kim and hired her to recreate the title that ended up causing a fire-storm of fans. Kim has since joined Airtight Games in 2009.
4. Laura Fryer, Executive Producer, Microsoft Game Studios
This lady has been around since 1995 making the most manly games you can imagine. Crimson Skies and Gears of Whaaaa? A woman produced Gears of War? That’s right, no wonder those dudes look so ripped! Crimson Skies was no joke either, a completely in-depth flight title. This will make you think twice when you have a room full of testosterone going.
3. Susan O’Connor, Game Writer, Activision, Midway, Microsoft, Others
One of the most influential and recognizable names in the gaming industry is Susan O’Connor. Maybe you don’t know her name, but any prominent gaming CEO would. She has written for over twenty titles in a multitude of genres, including Bioshock, Far Cry, and that’s right…Gears of War. Just slap a big pink bow on that game and call it a day.
2. Amy Hennig: Creative Director, Naughty Dog
Do you like Uncharted or Last of Us? Then go ahead and take a bow for the woman who brought it to you. All you Playstation fans should being raising the roof to this woman. She’s a big reason that Sony has a line of must have exclusives. Not only is she a director and script writer, but she also directly oversees the performance captured actors that bring the characters of these games to life.
1. Kate Edwards: Executive Director, International Game Developers Association
Whose that? Oh just the lady that you sold your soul to without knowing. This genius of sales made sure that by the time Halo, Ninja Gaiden, Dragon Age, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Ryse, Fable, and Age of Empires came out, you were drooling. I doubt a single person reading this article hasn’t played at least one, if not all the before stated titles and for good reason. Kate Edwards is a world leader in uniting game makers from every region and has a strategy to show geopolitical and cultural risks and opportunities in every region of the world. Ummm…what does that even mean? That my friends means that before a game is even made they ask this lady, do you think this is a good idea? She says yes, no, where, when, and how. Think about that next time you play Halo.
While the industry of gaming has a lot of work to do hiring more high-ranking women, in general I think it’s safe to say that they have come up with some outstanding games for us to dive into. From story line, character design, and programming in its entirety, the proof is in the pudding. If women in gaming means more titles like GOW, Halo, Ninja Gaiden, Bioshock, and The Last of Us. I don’t think anyone is arguing. Bring on the girl power!