PC games are generally not region locked. Theory suggests that this is because game producers aim to provide a product consistent with a masculinized space that will prove attractive to male gamers. H3 In box art that includes female characters, centrality of male characters is positively associated with game sales. This theoretical framework provides a basis for understanding why female characters are less likely to be depicted in game box art than are male characters, especially under some conditions. If box art serves the overall purpose of signaling that the game will provide a masculinized space for players then it would be expected that box art that provides the clearest signals will be associated with stronger game sales. We have included a list of what console systems have region lockouts and which don't. Representation of Women and Men in Video Games The portrayal of men and women in video games has been investigated with both qualitative research and quantitative research. That is, the focus here is on game sales as the outcome variable, with depiction of female and male characters as the antecedent variables. In other words, sexualization of women will be positively associated with game sales, but only in cases where the women portrayed are not in a central position on the box.
H1 Presence of female characters alone in box art i. Although shipping in and from Canada is expensive, it has been reliable for us, this being said, if you select a shipping option that does not include tracking, we cannot be held accountable for items that are lost in the postal system check our feedback, you can be sure your item will be sent as promised. This game has got to be one of the oddest games to play Since best-selling games reflect both the average cultural preferences of gamers and the content that is most widely available for producing gender socialization e. In other words, every attempt was made to control the effects of variables that would influence the dependent variable but have no relationship to the predictor variables so that the relationships of the predictor variables with the dependent variable could be more reliably assessed. A few years later, Dietz found no female characters at all in a third of games viewed. ESRB rating is the industry content rating of each game that indicates its appropriate audience e. This study attempts to do just that by relating video game sales data to a content analysis of the representations of men and women on the box art for the same games. Following the recommendation of Williams and colleagues, in this study the relationship between portrayal and sales is examined empirically in order to assess how gender roles are depicted in those games seen by the largest audiences. Genre of the game is controlled where feasible, because some genres e. Video games are one of the few spaces in which it is still conventional to overtly privilege males and assume a specifically masculine perspective. H4 In box art that includes female characters, portrayal of female characters as non-central and sexualized is positively associated with game sales. In addition, game producers presumably design these ads to influence purchase decisions; they have less control over reviews and over other ads, which are likely seen by a much smaller percentage of the target buyer group. Playable female characters i. Studies of the representation of men and women in a broad sample of video games may therefore provide a biased view of the effects of video games on the behavior of players, since most players do not see most games. The research question explored here is whether particular depictions of female and male characters on game box art, specifically the presence, centrality, and sexualization of female characters and the presence and centrality of male characters, are related to sales. We greatly appreciate feedback from buyers as it gives us an idea of our strengths and weaknesses and where we can improve. This theoretical framework provides a basis for understanding why female characters are less likely to be depicted in game box art than are male characters, especially under some conditions. The other set of gatekeepers of interest in this study is reviewers. To date, research has focused on describing depictions of women and men in all video games, not how these depictions influence sales and, in turn, audience exposure to particular depictions Williams et al. At a simplistic level it might be assumed that sexualized representations of women are used in video games because such depictions increase game sales. It should be noted that all hypotheses pertain to that subsample of games aimed at adolescent and older players i. Tracked Packet is 7 business days. H2 In box art that includes female characters, centrality of female characters is negatively associated with game sales. That is, the focus here is on game sales as the outcome variable, with depiction of female and male characters as the antecedent variables. Because the sexualized female characters are marginalized instead of strong and central, they do not represent a threat to the masculinized space of the game Kimmel,
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