I need some (female) friends on PSN

So, I have been playing Survival missions on Sniper Elite 4 a lot. You know that, if you`re reading my blog. One reason for that is the game itself, of course, but the more important reason is that I have found a load of really cool team mates to play alongside and I really enjoy being around them. I appreciate their personalities and their unique contribution to our game experience (Shotgun! Where’s my ammo, dammit? Sorry, I’m down. Nee-nah! Nee-nah!). They are, I should mention, exclusively men.

Why do I mention this?

Because the idea for this post came to me after that one memorable Survival mission we did the other day (Facility on Hard), where I achieved a pretty unique Double Kill but was shy to share it with the guys, even though I really, really wanted to.

See, there was a Testicle Shot (always a tricky one when playing with the boys) followed by a Headshot. I know, I know. So, how did I achieve that? Well, thanks to my hurling a grenade at them previously, my targets had thrown themselves to the ground and when I started shooting, things got awkward.

Let’s just say that, when I finally could no longer contain myself and told the guys, a pretty drrty discussion ensued.

I don’t mind. I don’t feel offended by that. Why would I? I can distinguish between friendly banter and offensive comments. But then, I am almost forty years old. I know who I am and don’t take shit from anybody. Still, I started wondering what it would be like playing with only female team mates. Wished I had some, actually, just to see how that worked out. No offense to my boys, of course, but then, I already know that works well.

And then I realised that only, or mostly, guys seem to be playing with their mikes enabled, for I am pretty sure there are women and girls playing this game, same as me (Even though some boys and men still marvel at the very idea of women playing Shooters. Please!).

I even created two games whose titles made it pretty clear female players were exclusively welcome, but I will never know if they actually were female, for they all played with their mikes turned off. Actually, in all my time playing coop, and restrict that to Assassin’s Creed Unity and Sniper Elite 4, I have so far encountered only one single female player who had her mike turned on. As it happened, the two of us turned out doing our own thing, while the boys did theirs.

Why is that?

Though I am too old to care about these things, really, I nevertheless wonder: Are women and girls afraid to turn on their mikes because they fear being indentified as female by their male comrades? If so, what the –

Maybe I have been lucky in regards to the guys I meet on PSN and are friends with there. Actually, I am very sure I am!

I still remember awkward situations.

One was during a coop mission in Assassin’s Creed Unity, one I knew very well. I had turned on my mike but kept silent as I led our team to an easy victory. I had already achieved the highest rank, which I guess inspired respect and resulted in everyone following my wordless lead. But when we had successfully finshed that mission one guy, clearly wanting to continue playing coop, asked me what we’d do next – as you would, right? – and I replied, which was when he realised I was a woman and told me to “never mind” and disconnected.

The other situation was while playing coop on Sniper Elite 4 with two guys, one of whom seemingly thought he could (or needed to) cow me or scare me off by making sexist comments. As some guys will, bless their simple souls, and please excuse me for being sexist as I have no patience for that kind of stupidity. So I shut him down by not being offended and replying in kind, provocing him in turn. He fell in love with me instantly. As some guys will.

The question I am asking is, I believe: Why do some guys believe they need to discourage female players and why do some female players believe they are not worthy of playing alongside the guys? Sorry, that is an assumption, but, apart from the fear of having to stand up to the boys and not being able to convince them you’re good enough to be on the team, what reason could there be for turning off the mike? Of course you are good enough! Else you wouldn’t be playing, right?

A (male) friend commented that maybe it’s because guys always want to be the best, but then, what exactly is the difference between competing with an ace female player and an equally awesome male player? I know he doesn’t see a difference either, by the way. And remember, playing Coop is so much easier, more fun and the missions much more likely to succeed when you’re able to communicate with your team-mates.

This is a game. And yes, it is about competition. Gender is not a factor. So play along.

I am Kell77370, in case any female (and male) players want to enjoy a little coop fun with me.

So long and I’ll be seeing you on the battlefield.


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