Are female D&D players comfier around male D&D players these days?

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A Fiery Flying Roll

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I've been in a couple of those... a sewing group and some book clubs. It might be peculiar to my friends but they had a solid mix of men and women... except for one horror book club where I was the only guy.
But I would presume most sewing clubs are predominantly female, as with scrapbooking (another group I was in, though it was more about the book than the scrap).
Attracting some attention, being the only guy, maybe, but I can't recall any talk/concern about why more guys didn't want to join.
On the flipside, I suspect there weren't horror stories from men who'd stumbled across the wrong sewing group and been treated badly either. That's one obvious difference; most of the social stigma towards guys in hobbies dominated by women comes from outwith.
I'm trying to think of a female dominated hobby that isn't a considered a primarily female activity or even a female "nerdy" hobby that could compare with RPGs. Pole dancing is not exactly a respectable female hobby, but it is certainly female centered (not a lot of people encouraging male pole dancers).
Baking I think, at least in the UK. Although a lot of that is to do with shows like The Great British Bakeoff. Also certain hobbies; the Harry Potter fandom is majority female but isn't seen as a female activity in the same way.
 

TristramEvans

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Also, Shakespeare does great tragedy but his comedy is feeble. People are always all "that's because it's old so you don't have the cultural references". Shut the fuck up. The Roman and Greek satirists are still hilarious. It's just Shakespeare is bad at jokes.

I liked Shakespeare's teen comedy with Julia Styles and The Joker
 

Bilharzia

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I was kinda of two minds should I post this or not (because of an earlier comment), but I'll do it anyway.

I started gaming in the very late eighties, and I've gamed more than once with only one woman, in contrast to tens, maybe near a hundred plus men. I'm not an unattractive specimen of my gender, and I have never had any difficulties in finding partners. None of the women I've dated/married has ever shown any interest in the hobby after the first session. I am not saying it is a gender specific thing, but perhaps more associated with the culture of the prevailing age, or even a local culture. I personally know only a few twentysomething girls right now, and playing any games (aside from candy crush category and tinder) is very far from their areas of interest.

Things have changed. I come into contact with large numbers of 18-20 year olds and there are at least as many, if not more young women interested in, and playing d&d. This has very much followed the online streaming trend. These things go in cycles though. I can imagine my English grandmother being into it (she loved games and organising parties) in the 1930s. Since I recently discovered the first Choose-Your-Own-Adventure book was published in 1930, "Consider the Consequences!" written by two women, she may have actually played something like it.
 

Necrozius

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Okay, we're on page 4 and there have been multiple discussions about why vampires were a thing in the '90s and '00s and nobody has mentioned this.

View attachment 52284
I hated the "angry wrinkly scrunched up forehead" look that this show introduced. Made the vampires look like they had beady little eyes that were too close together. UGH.
 

Necrozius

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eh, Buffy was a late reaction to the trend, not an instigator
The Anne Rice books were pretty huge, weren't they? And TV shows like Forever Knight?

Hell there was even a show based on Masquerade called Kindred the Embraced (as an aside, they had a neat idea of merging the Nosferatu and Tremere, an idea that I would LOVE to actually implement if I ever run this game again).
 

Moracai

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Things have changed. I come into contact with large numbers of 18-20 year olds and there are at least as many, if not more young women interested in, and playing d&d. This has very much followed the online streaming trend. These things go in cycles though. I can imagine my English grandmother being into it (she loved games and organising parties) in the 1930s. Since I recently discovered the first Choose-Your-Own-Adventure book was published in 1930, "Consider the Consequences!" written by two women, she may have actually played something like it.
*Insert Texan accent* "Things haven't changed 'round 'dese parts compadre". My son would've mentioned to me if any of his schoolmates would've been into TTRPGs, male or female.
 

TristramEvans

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The Anne Rice books were pretty huge, weren't they? And TV shows like Forever Knight?

Hell there was even a show based on Masquerade called Kindred the Embraced (as an aside, they had a neat idea of merging the Nosferatu and Tremere, an idea that I would LOVE to actually implement if I ever run this game again).

Anne Rice was a primary mover for sure. I recall Forever Knight being contemporary with Kindred, but I was watching it in syndication so don't know the original airdates. Besides classic Dracula/Vampire films other obvious influences were Lost Boys, Near Dark, The Hunger, and Fright Night 2.
 

Fenris-77

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Anne Rice was a primary mover for sure. I recall Forever Knight being contemporary with Kindred, but I was watching it in syndication so don't know the original airdates. Besides classic Dracula/Vampire films other obvious influences were Lost Boys, Near Dark, The Hunger, and Fright Night 2.
That's pretty much my late 80's list, yeah. I think the Matrix, while having nothing to do with vampires, is also a pretty key touchstone for aesthetics.
 

chuckdee

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No that was the Chaucer one with the Queen soundtrack.

edit: although Marc Anthony has a cameo.
I've lost the thread. We're talking about 10 things I hate about you- which I love. That's based on Shakespeare - Taming of the Shrew.
 

chuckdee

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Anne Rice was a primary mover for sure. I recall Forever Knight being contemporary with Kindred, but I was watching it in syndication so don't know the original airdates. Besides classic Dracula/Vampire films other obvious influences were Lost Boys, Near Dark, The Hunger, and Fright Night 2.
I think it was taken to premiere I don't care mode with these three:

1669734979050.png
 

chuckdee

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I was making a stupid "joke". Sorry.
No worries... I realized after that you were probably equating it to a different movie without saying that other movie's name (A Knight's Tale).

It just flew over my head LOL
 

A Fiery Flying Roll

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One of my favorite pieces about this was ironically by a predator of a different sort - LCK
One obvious problem with it is that it's entirely untrue. Homicide is not the leading cause of death for women, even if we assume that all homicides are carried out by men for the sake of argument. It's heart disease, same as with men, closely followed by cancer. This isn't to say I want to underestimate the danger to women either, but overstating the risks based on what seems to be entirely made up data doesn't help either. (That's US statistics, but I also checked UK and it's similar, except leading cause of death for women is Alzheimers. The classification system is different but the trend is the same).
This on the other hand is unacceptable and quickly leads to endorsing things like bigoted arguments from crime statistics based on race. You should reject this reasoning before it takes you places you really don't want to go.
I'm having to skirt round this one because it easily shades into politics, but the statistics are nowhere near as easy to interpet when it comes to crime. If people are interested I can only suggest doing a deep dive into the criminology literature on the subject.

That said, yes and no.

I'd agree that *assuming* that any man is violent is wrong. But that's different than taking into account the difference in probabilities.

There are areas I am a lot more cautious walking alone in, not because most people living in them are criminals but because crime happens in them more frequently. Similar principle applies and it's no different to insurance companies having different premiums depending on crime rates.
 

Shipyard Locked

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I'm having to skirt round this one because it easily shades into politics, but the statistics are nowhere near as easy to interpet when it comes to crime. If people are interested I can only suggest doing a deep dive into the criminology literature on the subject.

That said, yes and no.

I'd agree that *assuming* that any man is violent is wrong. But that's different than taking into account the difference in probabilities.

There are areas I am a lot more cautious walking alone in, not because most people living in them are criminals but because crime happens in them more frequently. Similar principle applies and it's no different to insurance companies having different premiums depending on crime rates.

The baddies can futz around with data interpretation just as much as we can futz around with data interpretation, that's not even the point - On principle we should not make dangerous casual sweeping statements about groups of people based on tiny minorities within them. Having a double standard about this for any group is a PR blunder that plays right into the hands of awful people. Awful people who are always recruiting and laugh at equivocation.
 

chuckdee

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One obvious problem with it is that it's entirely untrue. Homicide is not the leading cause of death for women, even if we assume that all homicides are carried out by men for the sake of argument. It's heart disease, same as with men, closely followed by cancer. This isn't to say I want to underestimate the danger to women either, but overstating the risks based on what seems to be entirely made up data doesn't help either. (That's US statistics, but I also checked UK and it's similar, except leading cause of death for women is Alzheimers. The classification system is different but the trend is the same).
Not over all time- note that bit. Modern you'd be correct, but all time? It's not heart disease.

EDIT - and was my post removed? That seemed a strange line to draw and not remove the responses, but just wanted to make sure if this is something verboten or not...
 

Shipyard Locked

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You know what, forgive me, I'm getting too political and I haven't contributed much of true interest to this thread. Perhaps we'll talk about this issue in the community section later.

Let me get back on track by asking a legitimate question: World of Darkness has a general reputation for attracting women back in the 90s, but was true for all the lines? Specifically, did Werewolf: The Apocalypse have many female players?
 

chuckdee

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The baddies can futz around with data interpretation just as much as we can futz around with data interpretation, that's not even the point - On principle we should not make dangerous casual sweeping statements about groups of people based on tiny minorities within them. Having a double standard about this for any group is a PR blunder that plays right into the hands of awful people. Awful people who are always recruiting and laugh at equivocation.
It wasn't a casual sweeping statement about all men. It wasn't saying that all men or bad or anything like that. It's just that more women are assaulted than men, so there's a higher probability of that decision ending in something worse than a bad date.
 

Gringnr

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Anecdotally, I knew some female Werewolf players.
 

chuckdee

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Anecdotally, I knew some female Werewolf players.
Doing some work for WW and at a game store at the time, anecdotally, WoD seemed to bring in a larger percentage of female players, no matter the game.
 

A Fiery Flying Roll

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Not over all time- note that bit. Modern you'd be correct, but all time? It's not heart disease.

EDIT - and was my post removed? That seemed a strange line to draw and not remove the responses, but just wanted to make sure if this is something verboten or not...
[mod]Consulted backstage and it's not you or anyone so specific, but everyone (including myself!) was getting too far into societal debate. Can we all shift it back to RPG specifics please!

The answer for "why did mine get removed and not responses" was simply a matter of mod schedules; nothing got removed after yours because there wasn't anybody removing stuff after that time![/mod]
 

A Fiery Flying Roll

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You know what, forgive me, I'm getting too political and I haven't contributed much of true interest to this thread. Perhaps we'll talk about this issue in the community section later.

Let me get back on track by asking a legitimate question: World of Darkness has a general reputation for attracting women back in the 90s, but was true for all the lines? Specifically, did Werewolf: The Apocalypse have many female players?
I can only speak for LARP, but Werewolf had a sizeable number of female players although not as many as Vampire. (It was also smaller overall in terms of attendees).
 

Silverlion

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Shakespeare was the Taylor Swift of his era. He wasn't a great genius, he was writing sitcoms, and dramedies (and once in a while actual drama.) But sometime later a bunch of people decided that making up new words, sexual innuendo, and sex jokes, were funny enough to be considered an art form. So now English teachers are driven to teach as high art.

Honestly, it's that time and language changed so we look back to some faux-Golden Age of writing, and that's who turns up. I'm not saying he wasn't a good sitcom, etc. writer, just that it's what he was at the time.

As for vampires, I'm pretty sure Anne Rice's works in the 70's and 80's drove other creations that eventually filtered down into gaming. She wasn't the only one just the one who had the largest impact on the cultural zeitgeist of the time. Vampires were very much a late eighties--early nineties thing.

Buffy was just riding the tide really. So to other shows. I seem to remember that the elevator pitch for Vampire appeared in the back of Ars Magica as Vampire focused Middle-Ages game (like Ars Magica) and probably the modern for the time popularity of vampires moved the development of the game to set it in the modern-day.

Really, I think it's more than one single thing a lot had to do with Gen X who grew up in that era and passed the ideas to others.

As for other lines of WW, I do think Werewolf, Changeling, and Mage had fewer female players--but probably more so than D&D, or other games because they followed the 'shared' oddly disjointed setting of those game lines
 

chuckdee

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Shakespeare was the Taylor Swift of his era. He wasn't a great genius, he was writing sitcoms, and dramedies (and once in a while actual drama.) But sometime later a bunch of people decided that making up new words, sexual innuendo, and sex jokes, were funny enough to be considered an art form. So now English teachers are driven to teach as high art.

Honestly, it's that time and language changed so we look back to some faux-Golden Age of writing, and that's who turns up. I'm not saying he wasn't a good sitcom, etc. writer, just that it's what he was at the time.
Sometimes the writing to survive transcends the art form. It wasn't the fact that he tried to write high art, it's that his composition and such transcended what he was doing, and was a bit more than making up new words, sexual innuendo and sex jokes.
 

Necrozius

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Specifically, did Werewolf: The Apocalypse have many female players?
Changing Breeds, yes, in my experience. Werecats, Werespiders etc... Such a campaign was the source of one of my favorite characters ever, a Were Raven (Welsh heroin junkie burglar).
 

Shipyard Locked

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EDIT - and was my post removed? That seemed a strange line to draw and not remove the responses, but just wanted to make sure if this is something verboten or not...

My post was removed too. Let's just move on.
 

Zebraman

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It's better then

"Oh, yeah, I'll tell you something
I think you'll understand
When I'll say that something
I wanna hold your hand"

The Beatles? Just a shit version of The Monkees.

Also, Shakespeare does great tragedy but his comedy is feeble. People are always all "that's because it's old so you don't have the cultural references". Shut the fuck up. The Roman and Greek satirists are still hilarious. It's just Shakespeare is bad at jokes.

You're not exactly wrong, although to be fair depending on the edition, the modern Roman and Greek translators may be doing a fair amount of heavy lifting to make the jokes work. Whereas Shakespeare is rarely translated or substantially altered.
 

A Fiery Flying Roll

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You're not exactly wrong although to be fair depending on the edition, the modern Roman and Greek translators may be doing a fair amount of heavy lifting to make the jokes work whereas Shakespeare is rarely translated or substantially altered.
That's fair, although I'd suggest that stuff like Martial at his most bitchy is funny in any translation.
 

Toadmaster

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Shakespeare was the Taylor Swift of his era. He wasn't a great genius, he was writing sitcoms, and dramedies (and once in a while actual drama.) But sometime later a bunch of people decided that making up new words, sexual innuendo, and sex jokes, were funny enough to be considered an art form. So now English teachers are driven to teach as high art.

Honestly, it's that time and language changed so we look back to some faux-Golden Age of writing, and that's who turns up. I'm not saying he wasn't a good sitcom, etc. writer, just that it's what he was at the time.

As for vampires, I'm pretty sure Anne Rice's works in the 70's and 80's drove other creations that eventually filtered down into gaming. She wasn't the only one just the one who had the largest impact on the cultural zeitgeist of the time. Vampires were very much a late eighties--early nineties thing.

Buffy was just riding the tide really. So to other shows. I seem to remember that the elevator pitch for Vampire appeared in the back of Ars Magica as Vampire focused Middle-Ages game (like Ars Magica) and probably the modern for the time popularity of vampires moved the development of the game to set it in the modern-day.

Really, I think it's more than one single thing a lot had to do with Gen X who grew up in that era and passed the ideas to others.

As for other lines of WW, I do think Werewolf, Changeling, and Mage had fewer female players--but probably more so than D&D, or other games because they followed the 'shared' oddly disjointed setting of those game lines

Have to disagree, vampires have been a hot commodity for most of the 20th Century. Dracula and lesser known vampires have been a popular subject in literature back into the Victorian era, and in film pretty much since that became a viable media.

Short list of vampire films

Nosferatu 1922
Dracula (Universal) 1931
Dracula's Daughter (Universal) 1936
Son of Dracula (Universal) 1943
The Horror of Dracula (Hammer) 1958
The Brides of Dracula (Hammer) 1960
Kiss of the Vampire (Hammer) 1962
Dracula Prince of Darkness (Hammer) 1966
Billy the kid vs Dracula (Circle) 1966
Dracula has risen from the grave (Hammer) 1968
Count Dracula (Variety) 1970
Lust for a vampire (Hammer) 1970
Taste the blood of Dracula (Hammer) 1970
The Vampire Lovers (Hammer) 1970
Scars of Dracula (Hammer) 1970
Countess Dracula (Hammer) 1971
Dracula vs Frankenstein (Independent) 1971
Twins of evil (Hammer) 1971
Blacula (American) 1972
Dracula AD 1972 (Hammer) 1972
Vampire Circus (Hammer) 1972
The satanic rites of Dracula (Hammer) 1973
Dracula (Universal) 1979
Love at First Bite (American) 1979

This only takes up to 1980, ignores non-english language and made for TV adaptions. Plus I'm sure I'm missing a few key vampire films since I think the search focused on Dracula, despite using vampire as the search term.
 

Silverlion

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Have to disagree, vampires have been a hot commodity for most of the 20th Century. Dracula and lesser known vampires have been a popular subject in literature back into the Victorian era, and in film pretty much since that became a viable media.

Short list of vampire films



This only takes up to 1980, ignores non-english language and made for TV adaptions. Plus I'm sure I'm missing a few key vampire films since I think the search focused on Dracula, despite using vampire as the search term.

Uhm. While yes there are a lot of vampire movies, and books, vampires proliferated extensively after Anne Rice's Interview with a Vampire, particularly in literature (and even more specifically in the YA field) The fact is compared to a smattering of movies and more books the genre exploded post-Anne Rice (1976 IwaV) by orders of magnitude. Because it was what one might call a 'blockbuster' book.


It's not like there haven't always been Vampire stories to draw from I'm talking about a matter of scale.

I very much doubt that any of those movies really hit on the attention span of young adult girls in the 90s when Vampire Chronicles, Vampire Diaries, and others. (The era when vampires existed--as it came out in 91) and yes they fed pretty directly into the Vampire Larps locally. (All of this pre-dates Twilight and other ahem 'recent' explosions like YA Post-Apocalypse series.)
 

Ravenswing

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My first DM, in the 80s, was a girl, and I've RPGed with a mix of girls and guys since. I think the idea that girls didn't roleplay was always revisionist history based on stereotypes about geeks & gamers popularized in media in the 90s and early aughts. If girls never wanted to game with you I think that's probably something to do with you personally, and not the hobby.

Strong disagreement on the second sentence. I've *always* had mixed groups and almost always played in them as well ... and while it's been a long time since I've had the reaction, gods. I'd tell people that historically, about a third of my players have been women and that I'd never not gamed with them, and I'd get shocked and admiring "wows!!!" as if I were some sex god. The desk clerk at my favorite FLGS asked me once what my secret was, because it seemed to him like I was in there with a different woman at my side half the time. Several times, I was a spectator for my female players telling another woman that it really was okay to play in my campaign ... or just as often, to tell them they didn't need to play male characters; "no, really, Bob isn't like that, don't worry."

And I'd like to say that was an anachronism of the bad old days, except that the most recent such conversation was as late as 2004. My wife wasn't allowed to play a fighter in her D&D groups in the mid-1990s, and didn't get to do so until she took up combat LARPing (where we met) and no one could veto her picking up an axe. Gaming forums agonized over the issue throughout the 1990s and 2000s, and I've the saved posts to prove it.

If anything, it's even more noticable in LARP. Of the local LARP organisers, I'm actually the only bloke I can think of. The rest are all lasses.
My observation is that the ratio is far different in LARPs and MMORPGs, and for a good reason: it's far harder to deny a woman's agency in them. Nothing prevents a female player from hitting the level cap in a MMORPG, and smear all over the landscape an idjit who condescends to her.

I can't imagine any way someone could convincingly argue that they have accurate demographic numbers for gamers in the 90's, or earlier.
Not hobby-wide, obviously. But some of us have kept pretty anal records. I've complete ones for every session from early 1981 on forward, and kept track of every player and every character before that. So far, I've had 177 players, 58 of whom have been women. (And had some startling demographics come out of that, which might be worth a followup post.)
 

Necrozius

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The Vampire LARP community in Ottawa back in the late 90s was quite diverse. Easily half and half men and women. The Nosferatu "boss" or whatever was a bag lady.

Lots of ladies in corsets from le Chateau. And dudes in trenchcoats or dusters and shades.
 

TristramEvans

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Strong disagreement on the second sentence. I've *always* had mixed groups and almost always played in them as well ... and while it's been a long time since I've had the reaction, gods. I'd tell people that historically, about a third of my players have been women and that I'd never not gamed with them, and I'd get shocked and admiring "wows!!!" as if I were some sex god.

Yeah, I don't get that. The amount of girl gamers that I've slept with (that I wasn't already in a relationship with beforehand) is close to zero. I don't see any correlation between gaming with folks and romance.I gamed with girls because I was friends with girls.
 
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