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Ubisoft Director Says “Women Don’t Sell” – Is It True?

Women don’t sell! These are Ubisoft’s words when it comes to why they haven’t put a woman as a lead character in most of their games! It is also why we got gender selection in the Assassin’s Creed game, some of which I spoke highly against! However, what would compel Ubisoft to make such an outlandish statement like that?

I mean, we have games such as Horizon Zero Dawn (10 million sold), Beyond Good & Evil ( est. 52 million sold), Resident Evil 3 ( 3.5 million sold), Tomb Raider series (75 million sold) , Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (1 million sold), Bayonetta (700,000 sold ), Nier: Automata ( 4 million sold), Dishonored 2( 2.5 million sold) and Mirror’s Edge (2 million sold), all revered as amazing games and praised for the portrayal and gameplay of their characters and the narrative they told. It is beyond me how anyone could sit there and make such a blatant lie of a statement…unless they were looking at the sales figures. And I ironically, every game mentioned sold reasonably well.

However, not as well as Ubisoft’s would like them to sell! That was enough for them to conclude that male gamers simply arent’ interested in games that feature females as lead! It’s such a close-minded way to think, yet since Ubisoft is a business, money talks and they listened.

When you look at games like Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End (15 million sold), God of War (10 million sold), Spider-Man PS4 (13.2 million sold), Assassin’s Creed Origins (15 million sold) and Resident Evil 2 (5 million sold) for example, those numbers seem to look kinda crazy and somewhat prove the executives at Ubisoft right! However, despite that, I still think it’s majority fucked up to just outright write-off potential female leads in Assassin’s Creed game. With a good, strong narrative you can make any lead character great! Of course, keep in mind that the games with the male lead mentioned above are following a legacy so they do kinda have the advantage there.

There’s no denying figure here, it’s clear that male lead character sells more because the video game space is dominated by men. That’s just a fact! However, I don’t agree with just out not trying to showcase women if game developers want too! It bothers me that Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was meant to star a lead female, I would’ve preferred that than what we got today! Some might say historical accuracy, which I get, but if they wrote the story in a believable manner, it can be forgiven.

Of course, Ubisoft as a cultural is messed up anyways so their word kinda doesn’t hold up as much!

4 thoughts on “Ubisoft Director Says “Women Don’t Sell” – Is It True?

  1. It’s a similar argument as why people say People of Color in lead roles don’t sell. There’s a normalcy factor and bias involved.

    There will always be people who only want to see people like them in major roles. So, having the media dominated by straight while males won’t change things anytime soon.

    Secondly, a lot of people only think or accept the media for what it is because they aren’t used to it being anything else. There lies the problem. Change is hard. It requires time and effort and most of these companies would rather just throw a straight white male in the leading role and collect their money. You can’t count on the current leading companies changing their ways because it’ll always be money over morality.

    The best way for there to be diversity in video games and all media is having female and People of Color creators. Cultivating that idea should be as normal as telling girls they can be princess (Don’t get me started on that.) or athletic People of Color that should do X sport. AND, have the people who want change support those efforts with their money.

    [Also, where’s your Like button?]

    1. I agree completely with your take! It really does come down to either we starting studios and bringing out the game we want or get at least more diverust in these companies to encourage taking a bit more risk!

      [Like button should be there, check to see if you’re signed in]

  2. The concecpt that Women don’t sell when it comes to games really just seems kind of dumb even with the male leads selling better. Tbh I think the female lead games sell a bit worse is mainly because the female lead games tend to be in niche genre’s, one-shots, newer IP’s, etc

    1. That’s another good point! Like I said the male lead games have a legacy that helps them, while the female lead games are one-shot sometimes.

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