In the world of video games, some of the most common protagonists are in the mold of, a plucky young lad that’s about to go through an emotional journey that will show that he’s a hero or a veteran of some war who has a dark past who may or may not have some amnesia and the everyday hero that has to save the world.
As a consumer in the game market today, you will very seldom see a little girl being a protagonist of a game. Not a female protagonist who’s in her 20s or a teenager, but a little girl. Most of the time, little girls have been regulated to the people that need to be saved due to their age, rather than the hero with a defined personality.
This might not seem important to the gaming public as a whole right now. We are still trying to get more female protagonists in games with sensible clothing for saving the world so why would we worry about little girls?
We should worry about them because the kids of this upcoming generation will be the gamers of tomorrow and young girls will be among them. There might be plenty self-insert characters like the protagonists of Pokemon who don’t have any defined personalities but there are very few small female protagonists.There are plenty of heroes they can aspire to be but relating to those heroes is a completely different matter. Kids will often want to relate to someone their own age and in the gaming world right now, which is easy for a boy no matter what the age but for girls, their options are much more limited as most female video game protagonists being teenagers or adults.
This is why The Walking Dead: Season 2 and Child of Light are so important in the world of games right now. There are some other, smaller games that have little girl protagonists and those are great too, but these two are mainstream games.
The Walking Dead has a recognizable brand name that people can gravitate to and while kids aren’t exactly recommended to play a game where an 11-year-old girl can get eaten, it’s still quite refreshing to see a kid that age in a game like Walking Dead be more than just the annoying kid that follows you around. Even in the first game, Clementine was a well-rounded character, she’s resourceful, a quick witted and a sweet girl, a character that video game creators can only dream about creating. Clementine is a good role model for little girls and a great example of what a young female protagonist can add to a story.
This brings up the subject of the newest game, Child of Light, which hasn’t been released yet, but features a protagonist that’s a little girl. Aurora, the heroine, is trying to save the world that she is transported to and she is also trying to reunite with her father. While it all depends on how the game is overall, Child of Light could be a good game with a possible character for little girls to relate to.
Video games are a form of media that has been shown, especially in recent years, to be accessible to everyone. Certain games might have ratings to protect children from certain sensitive subjects, but in the end they are supposed to be something that everyone should enjoy.This is why representation is so important in the gaming industry, especially characters that the new upcoming “hardcore gamers” are supposed to relate to. If more characters like Clementine and Aurora are what’s going to come out of major studios then the future of gaming is in good hands.
Now, it’s just a matter if we can continue to show both boys and girls that they can be heroes.