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The Guildhall at SMU




TOPIC: Legend of Lotus Spring: the game that targets women

Q: When did you first recognize the need for games targeting women?

A: Because so many men started this business, and have been heavily involved in the technological areas, we have always seen titles aimed at what marketers call the traditional, 30 year old male gamer.

So what about the rest of us?! Only recently has the market shifted to what the industry calls the "casual gamer" which statistically is still top heavy on the male side.

In my research and business development for Women Wise, I surveyed almost 3,000 women, half of which came from a game publisher's data base. When I asked for titles of games women like to play, I cringed when I read that 60 percent named Solitaire! (Ok, I play too, but really…)

I sent formal questions, but women started writing me pages as to what they wanted to see, how they would spend their money, what other software they were interested in etc. I was overwhelmed with email, suggestions, positive feedback and good wishes. I'm still writing thank you notes!

Women do WANT software titles of all kinds, but said to me loud and clear, it's not there!

Q: How did you come to the conclusion of what game characteristics women would in fact be interested in?

A:I have great respect for Laura Groppe, president of Girl Games and the women at Purple Moon for their pioneering efforts. I know their research and studied numerous other reports along with observing first hand the differences of how girl vs. boy "play" on computers from the ages of 10 - 17. Many of the "girl" play factors carry on to "womenhood."

I think the WomenGamers.Com audience are pretty sophisticated computer game players. And most, I dare say can get past the "women's thing" or gender issues of gaming. There are lots of women who can beat the pants off the guys when it comes to the shooters and revel in it.

My female testers on The Legend of Lotus Spring highly rated the story line; exquisite, detailed and colorful graphics and enjoyed that this is NOT a dark environment. Women enjoyed seeing animated eye candy rewards within short time periods. The cursor and navigation are intelligent, intuitive and for the most part the interface is seamless. Game play is not frustrating and you don't need a manual to figure things out. If you want details on the culture and customs, it's all there to be read in the Diary.

It's just plain fun and a "time waster" with great satisfaction.

Many of the comments are applicable to all games regardless of gender. I know my audience. If people agree with the above, then this title is for them.

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