Here at the Borderhouse, the portrayal of women in games has been a major topic of discussion. A couple of months ago, Borderhouse contributor Samantha Allen argued that more games need to be made with female protagonists. On July 12th-14th, one group in Vancouver is organising a big game jam to do just that. The press release is pasted below:
VANCOUVER, B.C. – June 26, 2013 – iamagamer, a new organization that arranges game jams around social causes, seeks to challenge gender stereotypes in gaming with their inaugural event kicking off July 12 in Vancouver, Canada. This collaborative development marathon will bring together game developers, designers, artists, and students to create video games with female protagonists, from scratch, over a 48-hour period.
To be held at Vancouver’s Centre for Digital Media, this unprecedented event will dispute the prevailing opinion that video games are for guys and that games with strong, female lead characters will not sell (as observed in a recent Gamasutra article), sending a message that such stereotypes are not only incorrect, but have a negative impact on the industry.
Since its initial announcement, the event has grown in popularity with several satellite sites around the world and many remote participants signing on, bringing total “jammers” to more than 150 worldwide. The organizers seek to create a fun, collaborative, and energy-filled opportunity for individuals in the video game industry and beyond to come together around a common cause and create something that they believe in.