Gaming For Women: What Are Girls Playing?

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Earlier this year, a survey published by Quantic Foundry revealed the types of game that female players find most appealing. The gaming market research company surveyed over 270,000 games, including 18.5% of whom were women and found that female gamers enjoy a variety of different genres.

The most popular games were mobile match-3 puzzle titles and social farming simulators, both of which received female audience averages of 69%. However, sports and shooting based games were far less appealing to women, with 4% and 2% respectively, meaning that the vast majority of respondents who listed these genres were male.

Though the results of the Quantic Foundry study may seem a little predictable at first, with the top scorers being puzzle-based games, the number of women playing different genres is astounding. For instance, 41% of female respondents enjoyed atmospheric exploration games, 36% listed MMOs (high fantasy) and a quarter of survival roguelike players were female.

That said, when we take a look at individual games and their audience statistics, it’s easy to see that gaming demographics require a little more nuance. Although sci-fi MMOs only received a total of 16% when it came to female gamers, Star Wars: The Old Republic claims an audience that is 29% women. Meanwhile, World of Warcraft – a game that sits comfortably in the high fantasy MMO genre that had 41% female players – has just 23% women players.

When it came to open world games, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate did much better amongst female audiences than the rest of its genre. Plus, 48% of those who play Dragon Age: Inquisition are women, which is odd considering just 26% of female Quantic Foundry study respondents enjoyed Western RPGs.

However, there was one large gaming industry sector that this particular study left out: iGaming. This sector is where the true range of female players’ interests really becomes interesting. According to a study on US player insights commissioned by Super Data Research earlier this year, social casino revenues rose to $1,695 million in North America during 2016, meaning that the continent represents 61% of global social casino revenue.

Despite the fact that casino gambling is often portrayed a male activity, this new research shows that not only do women make up 72% of desktop casino players, but also 73% of smartphone casino users. More specifically, women account for 79% of mobile slots players, which may be why we are seeing more feminine slots such as Goldwyn’s Fairies become more popular. In this enchanting game playable on the Vegas Casino site, players are able to enter a world that is equal parts high fantasy and puzzles – a classic combination that is sure to appeal to female demographics.

Needless to say, if female gamers continue to dominate gaming genres, we’re sure to see plenty of new games that are aimed specifically towards women. Of course, games like Call of Duty and Battlefield will and should continue to be made for male gamers but perhaps we will also see some more female-orientated titles from developers who want in on this expanding market.

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