Why so many video games feature a macho male protagonist on the game cover?

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#1 Posted by adaweawe (2 posts) -
This seems like a trend nowadays, just look at the top sellers for steam and a little box cover thumbnails all feature a picture of some male hero, usually white age 25 to 35, wielding a gun or ask and having some tough expression on his face. I get it, this is to appeal to the many gamers that are within this age range and who are male. But are you guys sick of this trend? Would you rather have them appeal to youth through some other method rather than pasting this picture of your masculine superhero/role model? And not to be rude, the many gamers are actually skinny scrawny types who really don't have much in common with the muscular men on the cover of the games. Maybe they play to escape and pretends to be the man they wish they were. But when all games feature this type of protagonist, it gets boring after a while doesn't it? Another marketing strategy behind this macho male game cover is that many of the game players are teenage boys who are becoming men and are afraid of being labeled as nerdy gamers. But when the game features this macho male whom they respect, it is harder for the peers to ridicule them. What do u guys (lol) think?
#2 Posted by rragnaar (27023 posts) -
It seems like bad marketing for the most part. I know it happened to Bioshock Infinite's boxart, and the people marketing The Last of Us tried to remove the girl from the cover, but Naughty Dog resisted it.
#3 Posted by Ilovegames1992 (14221 posts) -

Because that is a staple of many entertainment industries.

#4 Posted by wiouds (5130 posts) -

Gamers are picky about their main characters.

#5 Posted by Systems_Id (8155 posts) -

Because 18-35 white males still make up the most consistently profitable part of the game industry.

#6 Posted by CptJSparrow (10897 posts) -

Because 18-35 white males still make up the most consistently profitable part of the game industry.

Systems_Id
#7 Posted by Lucky_Krystal (1730 posts) -

Because publishers are convinced that that's the only thing that will sell.

#8 Posted by zombehhhhh (452 posts) -

I don't care about it really. I look at game covers individually and judge them. It makes sense why they do it though. A character on the cover of a game is typically the one you play as. Think of the new (or any) Tomb Raider game.

#9 Posted by 1PMrFister (3134 posts) -

Because 18-35 white males still make up the most consistently profitable part of the game industry.

Systems_Id
There you go.
#10 Posted by Metamania (11996 posts) -

It seems like bad marketing for the most part. I know it happened to Bioshock Infinite's boxart, and the people marketing The Last of Us tried to remove the girl from the cover, but Naughty Dog resisted it.rragnaar

There have been plenty of covers featuring women on the boxart, such as the Tomb Raider series or Bulletwitch or even Lollipop Chainsaw, So while, yes, it is a male-dominating aspect, females can have their cake and eat it too.

#11 Posted by BranKetra (48459 posts) -
The characters in video games players control are avatars in a sense. Making these characters greater than the average person in size and strength is one thing players like because it excites our imaginations.
#12 Posted by hippiesanta (9838 posts) -
Because Macho women doesn't sell ..... and we don't want to see Hilary Clinton, Madeline Albright, Condoleeza Rice or Oprah as a videogame hero
#13 Posted by Heirren (16868 posts) -
Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.
#14 Posted by Lethargika (1666 posts) -
Im guessing these companies have learned that most players want to play as a powerful character, physically and mentally. A badass so to speak. It probably gives them the feeling like they dominate the virtual world they are playing in.
#15 Posted by Gamefan1986 (1323 posts) -

Because no one would buy a game with an effeminate limp wristed guy on the cover. I know I sure as hell wouldn't.

#16 Posted by hippiesanta (9838 posts) -
Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Heirren
even sharing a console will be a problem... especially during the 5th and 6th gen..... because girls tend to accidently delete or overwrite your game save from memory card
#17 Posted by Pedro (21065 posts) -

Because no one would buy a game with an effeminate limp wristed guy on the cover. I know I sure as hell wouldn't.

Gamefan1986
By that logic japanese games would not sell at all. but only a fool would buy a game soley base on its cover.
#18 Posted by Strakha (1786 posts) -

People don't play games to be who they are and do things they can do. Most people for example aren't part of an elite spec ops team who fights terrorist, nazis or aliens but games with these themes sell well none the less.

#19 Posted by IndianaPwns39 (5037 posts) -

It seems like bad marketing for the most part. I know it happened to Bioshock Infinite's boxart, and the people marketing The Last of Us tried to remove the girl from the cover, but Naughty Dog resisted it.rragnaar

Is that bad marketing though? Or is it good? 

Take for example movies that constantly feature ads with the one action scene taken out of a drama focused film. Look at the marketing, hell, even the title for Inglorious Basterds. They were secondary characters and were featured only a few times in the movie but absolutely dominated the trailers. It got people in the door, so it did its job. Is that good or bad marketing? And not morally bad.

#20 Posted by Metamania (11996 posts) -

Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Heirren

I'm sorry, but that just feels wrong to say. Completely wrong. I know female gamers that can beat a game very fast or can even hold their own in genres such as fighting.

#21 Posted by Lucky_Krystal (1730 posts) -

[QUOTE="Heirren"]Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.hippiesanta
even sharing a console will be a problem... especially during the 5th and 6th gen..... because girls tend to accidently delete or overwrite your game save from memory card

Probably two of the dumbest posts I have read all week.

#22 Posted by Jackc8 (8500 posts) -

I'm sure that stuff is all 100% decided by the marketing department and any "creative" types have no say in the manner whatsoever.

#23 Posted by IndianaPwns39 (5037 posts) -

[QUOTE="Heirren"]Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Metamania

I'm sorry, but that just feels wrong to say. Completely wrong. I know female gamers that can beat a game very fast or can even hold their own in genres such as fighting.

I think (and hope and pray) he was being sarcastic.

#24 Posted by Heirren (16868 posts) -

[QUOTE="Heirren"]Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Metamania

I'm sorry, but that just feels wrong to say. Completely wrong. I know female gamers that can beat a game very fast or can even hold their own in genres such as fighting.

It's the truth. Studies have shown who the largest gaming demographic is. There are men that wear make-up for various reasons, stage/personal/etc, but you don't see male centric make-up ads on tv, do you?
#25 Posted by chaplainDMK (6816 posts) -
Beacause when most of us imagine a hero or badass, he will most likely be a 18-35 year old guy with an angry expression on his face and a gun.
#26 Posted by funsohng (27660 posts) -
cuz we gamers are insecure about our manhood that we need those manly sexy man on the cover to feel covered... manliness-wise.
#27 Posted by funsohng (27660 posts) -

[QUOTE="hippiesanta"][QUOTE="Heirren"]Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Lucky_Krystal

even sharing a console will be a problem... especially during the 5th and 6th gen..... because girls tend to accidently delete or overwrite your game save from memory card

Probably two of the dumbest posts I have read all week.

You should visit OT and SW more often >.>
#28 Posted by CRS98 (9036 posts) -
It's for the bro gamers who like to bro fist each other while bro-ing down a cold bro. I mean brew.
#29 Posted by Lucky_Krystal (1730 posts) -

[QUOTE="Lucky_Krystal"]

[QUOTE="hippiesanta"] even sharing a console will be a problem... especially during the 5th and 6th gen..... because girls tend to accidently delete or overwrite your game save from memory cardfunsohng

Probably two of the dumbest posts I have read all week.

You should visit OT and SW more often >.>

Oh lord. I'd rather not :lol:

#30 Posted by lensflare15 (6178 posts) -

I'm not sure what you're expecting to be on the cover of military themed games. It's a simple marketing stratagy that people will assocaite with a shooter game. Given the popularity of shooters right now, the majority of these types of games will have a rough looking soldier type guy on the front.

I have plenty of games in other genres that don't have the typical "macho" male on the cover, and they usually have the more interesting cover art.

#31 Posted by hippiesanta (9838 posts) -

[QUOTE="hippiesanta"][QUOTE="Heirren"]Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Lucky_Krystal

even sharing a console will be a problem... especially during the 5th and 6th gen..... because girls tend to accidently delete or overwrite your game save from memory card

Probably two of the dumbest posts I have read all week.

well oprah... you just can't face the reality
#32 Posted by Lulekani (2216 posts) -
[QUOTE="adaweawe"]This seems like a trend nowadays, just look at the top sellers for steam and a little box cover thumbnails all feature a picture of some male hero, usually white age 25 to 35, wielding a gun or ask and having some tough expression on his face. I get it, this is to appeal to the many gamers that are within this age range and who are male. But are you guys sick of this trend? Would you rather have them appeal to youth through some other method rather than pasting this picture of your masculine superhero/role model? And not to be rude, the many gamers are actually skinny scrawny types who really don't have much in common with the muscular men on the cover of the games. Maybe they play to escape and pretends to be the man they wish they were. But when all games feature this type of protagonist, it gets boring after a while doesn't it? Another marketing strategy behind this macho male game cover is that many of the game players are teenage boys who are becoming men and are afraid of being labeled as nerdy gamers. But when the game features this macho male whom they respect, it is harder for the peers to ridicule them. What do u guys (lol) think?

I think you pretty much got everything covered. Great Work.
#33 Posted by Floppy_Jim (25649 posts) -

Good game covers

dead_space_box_art.jpg?w=260demons_souls_deluxe_edition_box_art.jpg

^One evokes a sense of dread and isolation. One bucks the trend of muscely protagonist striking his dumb little pose by showing the main character beaten and defeated instead. (Suits the game in question very well)

Bad/lazily generic game covers

33041_13462_front.jpgdeadspace.jpg

Look, I have enormous guns and I'm not afraid of posing with them like a dickhead! 'Murica F*ck Yeah!

#34 Posted by WhiteKnight77 (12018 posts) -

[QUOTE="hippiesanta"][QUOTE="Heirren"]Women no good at games. Takes Em to long to finish one game thus not buying as many.Lucky_Krystal

even sharing a console will be a problem... especially during the 5th and 6th gen..... because girls tend to accidently delete or overwrite your game save from memory card

Probably two of the dumbest posts I have read all week.

Girl, just revel in the thought that they are clueless. Let them feast on these little facts from the Entertainment Software Association: [quote="Linked Page"] 4. The average game player is 30 years old and has been playing games for 12 years. 5. The average age of the most frequent game purchaser is 35 years old. 6. Forty-seven percent of all game players are women. In fact, women over the age of 18 represent a significantly greater portion of the game-playing population (30 percent) than boys age 17 or younger (18 percent).

#35 Posted by Deadpool-n (467 posts) -

Who wants to see a twig of an 18 year old wimp cringing at the sound of gunfire on the cover and in game?

The reason they are able to survive in these worlds is because they are tough. All those wimps died with everyone else.

#36 Posted by The_Last_Ride (71270 posts) -

Who wants to see a twig of an 18 year old wimp cringing at the sound of gunfire on the cover and in game?

The reason they are able to survive in these worlds is because they are tough. All those wimps died with everyone else.

Deadpool-n
yeah that is true. Though there might be a lack if tough female protagonists, i don't really mind it
#37 Posted by Lulekani (2216 posts) -
[QUOTE="Deadpool-n"]

Who wants to see a twig of an 18 year old wimp cringing at the sound of gunfire on the cover and in game?

The reason they are able to survive in these worlds is because they are tough. All those wimps died with everyone else.

The_Last_Ride
yeah that is true. Though there might be a lack if tough female protagonists, i don't really mind it

You would think wimps would appear more on the covers of survival horrors but then again the main attraction for those games are the baddies.
#38 Posted by magicalclick (22562 posts) -
I like Macho man, please keep it coming.