Quote of the Moment: What Women Want


"Speaking personally I hate violence in games. I'm actually really good at shooters, I have good hand-eye coordination, but I hate blood ... I hate all that stuff. I don't want my kids to see it, I don't want to see it with my kids, I just don't like it. It doesn't relax me after a long day, and I think that that's probably true of not everyone, but certainly a lot of women. ...

"So one of the things we're seeing now is themes. Part of Farmville... first of all it's basically a copy, but it's also a brilliant game in its own right. Part of what it is is a theme and a setting. If you analyze the gameplay and analyze the viral dynamics, what you'll see is that the key dynamics are not leaderboards, competing, 'I'm better than you,' trash talking, taunting, challenging, which are all social dynamics around competing. They're great, and you can see those in games a lot of women play like Brain Buddies or Bejeweled Blitz. ...

"And then you have Farmville ... and it's sharing and gifting and helping. You never would have seen this five or ten years ago. You just wouldn't have seen it. The addressable market wasn't there. Part of why this game is so popular now is ... there's this theme and there's this style that is very comfortable for women. We as women -- many of us, not all of us -- are very used to sharing and helping and 'Sure I'll water your crops and fertilize your field' and 'Hey, I get rewarded by the game' and 'Hey, you can give this gift to your friend' and there's all this stuff that's now become the language of successful game design that was just not viable."
-Shufflebrain CEO Amy Jo Kim addresses the complex tastes of women gamers at a Game Developers Conference panel discussion entitled "Are Women the New Hardcore Gamers?"

Originally published