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Published in Time Magazine

Every once in awhile I'll send in a letter to the editor for one of the various magazines I subscribe to. Usually they don't get published because I bash on how everyone likes American Idol, or something unpopular like that. Imagine my surprise when at the end of last week I received an email from Time Magazine mentioning my recent letter was going to be published. I couldn't locate the original at the time, but I knew it had something to do with gaming.

Here's what they published:

Aiming for New Gamers

"A Game for All Ages" [May 15] reported that Nintendo hopes its new game controller, which senses a player's hand movements, will appeal to girls and grandparents. As a female gamer who has been playing video games since the days of Pac-Man, I am always amused by game companies that feel the need to target female gamers. Not one of the games aimed at girls has appealed to me. You know what I want in a game? How about realistic female characters instead of bouncy, skinny, half-naked ones? I've given up playing female characters in any game because of how they look. Does anyone really believe female warriors ran around wearing little more than a metal brassiere? If Nintendo is serious about wanting to reach the female audience, it should treat us with some respect. We like questing too!

MICHELLE HEDSTROM Santa Clara, Calif.

They definitely changed a few things, and made it look like I was commenting on Nintendo's new controller, which I absolutely wasn't. I can't find the original I sent since I didn't send it from my main email account, but either I used the word "skanky" and they took it out, or maybe I censored myself. I definitely know I used the term MMORPG someplace, and that's what I was referring too, since now my last sentence doesn't make a whole lot of sense without it (and the letter is out of context) but hey, I'm still published.

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Comments

After reading your letter I can definately say that it wasn't aimed at Nintendo. At least it doesn't appear so to me. First of all, Nintendo doesn't at all exemplifies the ideal female beauty in it's games, if anything, Nintendo attaches itself to the ideal of male beauty (Link, which by the way in the latest Out magazine was named #1 hottest videogame character). Secondly, the offerings targeted to the "female" audience that Nintendo throws out may not cater to you, but games like Legend of Zelda remain popular among your demographic, and I can bet you that many females (MALES like myself as well) enjoy games like Animal Crossing or even Nintendogs. So even when your letter may address some interesting points, it comes way off when regarding the original issue.

By the way, on a similar note to yours.... I've heard females time and time again complain about the common female depiction (the iconic sex symbol), but what irks me is that the same females are those that practically drool over characters like Cloud/Link, my question is... where is the recognition of uglyness in all media? The majority of the population doesn't have a statuesque body as if sculpted by Michelangelo himself. The truth is, that no matter how one bemoans this issue, society itself has standards(?) about beauty which are generally accepted and sought.

Sorry for the double post. I just wish to expand on something.

If you are unaware, that Out Magazine is of the Lesbian&Gay type. Also returning to Nintendo characters.... There is this character from Nintendo whose name is Samus Aran, of Metroid fame. If you are a true gamer, you should know who she is. If not, Samus is a kick-ass, powersuited bounty hunter who is always ready for battle. If anything, in my experience in the videogame online community, females exalt Samus as an ideal representation of the female genre.

I'm not too familiar with Metroid, but I definitely will check out writeups and stuff about Samus then since that character sounds cool.

Being a large MMORPG player, I'm definitely very disenchanted with the female characters they come out with. As an example, I've played every race in World of Warcraft, and none of the female characters have been "good". The female night elf was the worst - she was like every teenage boys' fantasy - all bouncy and jiggly. Obviously the female characters in games like that aren't exactly aimed at females, but it's pretty sad to not have a strong character to relate to. I still love playing those games, but all my characters have been male as of late.

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