Though I think the setting and the characterization of the game world we’ve come up with does have something to do with it, I think there are a couple of other factors at play re: women participating. After all, our world is largely based on the Fallout games and several of my real-life female friends were/are obsessed with those games (as much or more as Donald Petersen and I) so it’s not like that is inherently unappealing to women. On the other hand, women I know tend to be less into the Mad Max films, which we also draw heavily from. And you need only look at A Boy and His Dog (a big inspiration for Fallout) to see how post-apocalyptic fiction can go heavily in the wrong direction in terms of appealing to women.
As far as I know there simply aren’t that many women who frequent this bbs. I’m making the classic sexist mistake of assuming everyone on the internet is male (and there very well could be some of our players this time and last time that are female but just haven’t said anything - not like they have to as it really doesn’t matter), but I do also know that most of the regulars around here are male for whatever reason. There are several regulars who are women, and perhaps next time we can reach out to them specifically to see if there’s something more we can do to encourage them to participate (assuming they’re not just completely disinterested).
Anyway - last time to make the game less of a sausage fest I changed my character from male to female. I had based my character on Data from Star Trek, and was inspired by one of my favorite episodes, the one where he builds himself a “daughter” android. The child starts out androgynous and is able to choose which human gender to inhabit. That means that Data himself could have changed genders if he wanted, so that’s what I did with my character and it seemed to go over well. There were other female (and/or androgynous, which well-suits the future sci-fi cyberpunk world of BSD) characters too and hopefully it worked out OK.
This time, there don’t seem to be any female characters that the players have come up with. There are a lot of great female characters in post-apocalyptic fiction (and trucker/driving movies and other similar stuff) to draw from, and I hope that maybe another person signs up and decides to do something like that.
But because we did think about this question ahead of time, many of the NPCs in our game will be female. The main character (Cougar) is female, and I just introduced another character a few minutes ago who is female.
My question is… is this enough? Or is it even necessary? Are we doing something wrong that drives away women (like many myopic D&D nerds do in real life), or is it just a case of there not being enough women here in the first place to find a few interested in playing? It’s not like the vast majority of male bbs readers are interested in playing either.