Moms (even “alpha-moms”) can be “real” gamers. Get over it!

There seems to be a recent outcry about the fact that gaming companies (such as Nintendo) have been reaching out to the so-called “Alpha Mom” when it comes to gaming. Especially with the Wii. Oh? And your point would be what?

I have to be honest when I say I am so over the “we are hard core gamers and they should focus on making games for us” attitude. Over. It. I have heard and read accounts of gamers who get seriously pissed off about the fact there are games created that are not “hardcore” but are being marketed to the maternal set. Cry me a river, boys. Your whining pisses me off!

Do I have a Wii? Yes. Do I have a DS? Yes. Do I have every game console (except PS3)? Yes. More importantly, do I play them? YES. Do I play MMORPGs? Yes. And I am *gasp* a Mom. Can you handle that truth?

But let’s get back to the real reason I am fired up. If I hear one more complaint or whine about companies that are looking to lure in/market to/reach out to the “alpha moms”, I just may have to open up a huge can of whoop ass on someone.

It is a simple concept. They show us the fun games. The games that will appeal to an entire family. They know (because they are smart and not caught up in whining about “hardcore” vs “casual” gaming) that if they can get Mom in on the gaming, they have won a huge battle. So what if you, Mr. Hardcore Serious Gamer Dude, is not a fan of games such as Wii Boogie. Easy solution. Don’t play it. I happen to have it, love it and play it with my entire family.

So why should game developers and companies look to demographics such as the alpha-mom set? (Besides the fact that we are the ones who make the majority of the household purchases?) Well, since I enjoy it, I share that fun with friends. They in turn buy the console and the game and the cycle continues.

Honey, that’s not ignoring the gamers that came before us. That is creating an entire new generation of gamers. Plus, if they sell these games to us “casual gamers” don’t you think that will equal profit, which leads to the ability to create more games which will get you, Mr. Hardcore Serious Gamer Dude, more of the types of games you want. And yes, I know that the first person shooter games are popular. You think I can’t whip someone on those, too? I may be able to kick up my heals with games like Wii Sports and Wii Boogie, but I can kick ass with the best of them on Halo.

What so many pissed off “gamers” seem to forget is that when they sell games to get the “Alpha Mom” and she gets her family involved (even if these are the “more casual” games), they are selling them to the generation that is probably going to kick your ass in your “hardcore game” within a few years. You have to learn to walk before you run. Soon, there will be an entire set of gamers that will be running…right over you in your game.

So let’s talk MMORPGs.

A while back on my gaming blog I had someone link to me and say that “I was ruining the integrity of true gaming by calling myself a gamer and playing World of Warcraft.

(Yes, I laughed, too.)

I am very thankful to Blizzard for taking a chance on me and hooking me up with WoW. I was at a point that not only did I not get the appeal, but I was ready to get it out of the house. They got it. They realized that if you get the mom, you get the family. I really do enjoy WoW. I have fun playing. And, yes, I can probably whip the crap out of a lot of the whiners on the game because I don’t worry about whether or not I am a “real” gamer or not. I just play.

Guess what, Mr. Serious Gamer Dude? Remember when you were crying a river over the delayed release of Blizzard’s Burning Crusade? Remember that? I was alpha testing it. Then beta testing it. Now, I am raiding with the best of them on it. Why? Because gaming is not limited to a certain minuscule demographic. Women play games. Including the “hardcore” games that you seem to feel you have cornered the market on. Even Moms play them. Yes, really!

The Newsweek blog Level Up wrote a re-cap of E3 and mentioned this very issue of not meeting the needs of the core gamer.

Elephant in the room:

The unfulfilled needs of the core Nintendo gamer, who’s becoming as invisible as Snuffleupagus while the company pursues Alpha Moms and active seniors.

The “needs of the core Nintendo gamer”? Like to have your every gaming need met? To have them ensure your gaming whims are taken care of with every release? To have your hand held? To ensure that a huge company like Nintendo meets only your needs and not those of a huge audience? To that I say, put your big girl panties on and get over it. Casual gamers are here. To stay. And we are making the company that you are whining about a huge profit.

Just as every book is not a thriller and every movie is not and action/adventure movie, not every game is going to fall into the “hardcore” gaming category. That is just common sense and good business.

Feeling neglected? Feeling like game developers need to listen to what you want and what you need?

Go cry to your guild and move over. We want to play.


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30 Comments

  1. Not to mention Serious Gamer Dude isn’t the most profitable demographic. 84% of household money is controlled by Mom. Ahem.

  2. Hmmmmmm…. I didn’t understand most of what you said… but this post reminds me that we need a Wii.

  3. Well said, Mom! I applaud you.

  4. Moms do the buying. Smart marketing. Plus, particularly with the Wii (in my own experience) it’s so user friendly and active.

  5. Bwahaha..Love it. We have all the consoles. All of them. Gamecube and DS’s in multiples even. We are a gaming family here.

  6. #1 You nailed it on the head.

    #2 What set you off?

    #3 Why no PS3? ๐Ÿ™

  7. TLC:
    1) Thank you. I even held back.

    2) I read gaming boards, caught up on reviews of E3 and being on games and game sites, I hear the buzz. The buzz pissed me off. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    3) With what we already have and nothing to show me yet that it is worth the money to dole out for a PS3, I am waiting. Not yet to the point where I want to spend that kind of money for something that hasn’t shown me it is worth it, yet.

  8. You go girlfriend…

    I have a Wii, down in the depths of my basement, but I must say I have NEVER played with it….

    maybe I’ll make the time….

  9. Bwahahah great post! Favorited to my blog for sure! ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. I have been begging my husband for a Wii….I tried to convince him it would be great exercise. Plus it would look so nice next to the XBOX and PS2!

  11. My kids play WOW…every day, but I have yet to play. I do, however, have an unhealthy obsession with the Kingdom Hearts games for PS2. I just beat the first game earlier this week and have been playing the second one non-stop all weekend. I might have to join some sort of Kingdom Hearts rehab. I’m guessing Kingdom Hearts isn’t considered “hardcore” since it has Disney characters, but I love it.

  12. I was hooked on WOW for almost 2 years and before that I have played a long string of MMORPGs. I’ve met some incredible women who were moms. I was pretty “harcore” and played about 14 hours a day with my boyfriend and roomate at the time.

    Although there were a couple of players who were on about as much as I was. They were stay at home moms and their husbands worked most of the day. I couldn’t help but wonder, who the hell was taking care of the kids.

    I’m not making any judgment calls, but I thought it was freigteningly amusing.

    I love the wii… they finally found a way to make gamers get some physical activity. :p

  13. Perhaps when there are more women game designers, there will be more games with broad (pun not intended, but funny) appeal. Oh. and why is it that they market “games for girls” with puppies and princesses and almost no play value? As for me, I am so into the non-role playing games on wii, the kids stand behind me arms folded tapping their feet and I don’t care.

  14. I have 3 gamers in my house who constantly try to covert me, personally I don’t think my attn span is long enough to learn..

  15. Don’t you girls ever want to ride your bike?

  16. Damn straight, sister! I was at a party last night talking to a whiney little gamer dude (coincidentally) and he was all agitated. I told him: if nintendo wants to court moms SO WHAT?! There is room for everyone to have a piece of the pie. It’s not like our paths will ever cross (marketing wise, IRL we may be one-and-the-same like you). what’s the problem?

  17. This hard core gamer sees no problem. But then again I don’t get mad about much. The thing is, most hard core gamer guys are really just insecure. And somehow they think that pwning you in PvP somehow makes up for it. But then they find out that it was a gamer mom that just wtfpwnbbqed them and BOOM their head explodes like a perfect headshot. How dare you play their game, and OMG how dare you beat them!!! They are HARDCORE!! Can’t you see the pasty face?

    What ever, I think it is awesome that you got into WoW. I hope you will move towards Warhammer when it comes out and we can beat up on each other in a socially accepted way. ;o)

    Anyway, keep it up!!

    Chao

  18. Go girl. Yes, and guess who makes all the gaming decisions for my family – ME! Little old mama. And guess who installed the wireless router for my family ๐Ÿ˜ฎ – me again..Smart move for Nintendo…

    Great to also hear about gamer moms. But I am not surprised.

  19. Great post. While I don’t title myself as a “gamer,” I do enjoy a good video game. (Actually, we’re totally addicted to Guitar Hero right now. By we, I don’t mean the kids. He’s not even two yet. I’m meaning myself and my Husband. We stay up to ridiculous hours and play, play, play. Oh, we are awesome.)

  20. Great post. We’re Guitar Hero addicts over here!

  21. You go! And for all the whiner-baby hardcore wusses out there, Yes, that was me kicking your @$$ on Azeroth while nursing my newborn! Now my mother is kicking you around the realm…that’s right, Gamer Grandma is here!

  22. When my daughter got gamecube I stayed home from work to play Legend of Zelda

    I am trying to convince the hubster to get Wii for christmas

  23. The demographic of a hardcore gamer is not limited to those with male sex organs, but to those with no job. But it was entertaining to read this rant that repeatedly whines against whiners. Makes me feel all empowered and stuff.

  24. Actually, I was ranting about the whining. Totally different beast all together. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  25. Pingback: Binary Firecracker – Moms Can Be Gamers, Too

  26. The part I found funniest? “Core Nintendo Gamers” Oh do you mean the same “die-hards” that left Nintendo twisting in the breeze when then stayed away from the GameCube in droves?

    And while it will be clearly displayed that I am not Nintendo’s biggest fan to begin with, how “serious” a “gamer” can you be if you have been playing ___ Kart racing (insert Mario, Muppets, whatever in the blank) with the cartoonish and big headed characters? (Not that there is anything wrong with that)

    This is no real surprise to me though. Everytime something goes mainstream, there is a group of “hard core” originals that seem to think the world should revolve around them. Hell if many people think back 10 years ago, if the “hard core” had their way, there would be no “dot coms” on the Internet, because the Internet was not supposed to be “commercialized.” Or how many people (way back when) got run off of newsgroups after being flamed by “hard core” people that couldn’t stand newbies “invading” their hallowed ground? Sooner or later these groups just quietly slink away when they realize they are not the “super power” they think they are.

  27. You made me want a Wii! Just from reading the little bit you wrote about it.

    What’s an ‘alpha mom’ anyway? Why do people have to make up stupid labels like that?

    Anyway, this is awesome.

  28. I’m loving this post and the replies ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m a gamer mom, that is a blogger, and is really into fashion. I’m a lover of all things, and trying to love life. To the person that said “Donโ€™t you girls ever want to ride your bike?”…yes we do, we excercise, while gaming and feeding our toddlers all at the same time. We are fabulous, multi-tasking women that can take on anything life hurdles at us. Ladies, keep gaming and keep pwning those newbs.

  29. I’m a gamer fiend myself ;). I think it is awesome that women play games. I met a couple cool women at this mmorpg site so we know you’re not alone ;p

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