Remember when women were like children? As in they should be seen but not heard from? No? Yeah, me neither, but as it turns out some of us do. The upcoming PlayStation 3 game The Last of Us revolves around Joel and Ellie trying to survive in a post apocalyptic world, and In an interview with VG247, The Last of Us‘s creative director, Neil Druckmann, has had “discussions where we’ve been asked to push Ellie to the back.” His response, along with everyone at Naughty Dog, they “flat-out refused.”
Druckmann believes that “. . . there’s a misconception that if you put a girl or a woman on the cover, the game will sell less.” His believe is shared by Ashley Johnson, the voice of Ellie. She says “I get the feeling, generally, that they think game’s won’t sell as well with a woman on the cover, compared to some badass dude on the front.”
This idea that women don’t sell is not necessarily restricted to just video games. Movies have a history of keeping movies male oriented. A once aspiring screenwriter has written about her experience with trying to write a screenplay with women in it and the blowback she’s received.
On the bright side, video games have reached a point where people with money who actually care about how well video games sell. The flip side of that is now we’re dealing with people with money who actually care about how well video games sell with incredibly outdated ideas and the willingness to keep the world that way.