A Brief History of Transvestite Gaming

A couple weeks ago my friend Freeman managed to get himself quoted in an AP article about people who play MMORPGs as characters of a sex other than than the one they happen to be.

The main thing I got from this article is that I will now always think of Freeman as "Freeman, poster child of cybertrannies." But beyond this the idea of fake online or gaming genders is such a non-issue that I've barely thought about it for years. Not since the old days of MUCKs, really.

But now that I am thinking about it, I present:

A Brief History of Transvestite Gaming

Ms. Pac-Man, 1981 - I'm not really sure what Pac-Man was, so I'm not clear on how there can be female version of it. But whatever Pac-Man was, sexual dimorphism in Pac-Species appears to be quite drastic, with the females sporting eyes.

Metroid, 1987 - At the end of this NES game you found that Samus, the armored character you controlled, was a woman. Or the lead singer of Poison, it was a little hard to tell with those graphics.

Leisure Suit Larry 3: Passionate Patti in Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals, 1989 - For half of this game, from a series devoted to sex jokes that are really funny to 10-year olds, you play as Patti. Feminism is set back ten years.

Tomb Raider, 1996 - Somehow Lara Croft became a sex symbol, despite having all the detail of a Lego figure.

Resident Evil, 1996 - At the beginning of the game you can choose to play this survival horror game as either Jill Valentine or Chris Redfield. No one --no one-- ever played through this game the first time as Chris.

Every Game Not Mentioned Above - If you happen to be a woman, then you played nearly every other game ever released as character of the opposite sex. Freak.

Posted: Tue - August 22, 2006 at