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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Girls, Wii can play too

Published: February 9, 2007
Section: Opinions

My childhood experience with video games was limited to a Gameboy and watching my best friend play Mario on her oldschool Nintendo. She always played the princess. It was clear that the brains behind Nintendo knew nothing about women;

the only female character wore a pink frilly dress. Great for running around and stepping on turtles. But lately Ive noticed how much of a mans world video gaming really is.

During the hopeless fiasco better known as housing last spring, I ended up in a Ziv with a bunch of guys. My parents were a little worried. They could only imagine what kind of scandalous debauchery I would partake in the next year. When I went to the housing appointment, however, the only thing on these boys minds was who would bring what videogaming system. My future suitemates were planning out the ultimate bachelor pad for the mildly maladjusted.

This school year has opened my eyes to the truly obsessive nature of boys with their video games. Many nights Ive walked through the common room at 8:30 in the morning to find someone sitting on the couch, bleary eyed, shooting zombies or slashing at plants with a sword. Several afternoons have been spent with the entire suite in the common room watching one person play Sonic, Mega Man, or Resident Evil. Nothing facilitates social gatherings like a good group game of Jeopardy. Two of my suitemates attempted to finish a version of Zelda in 24 straight hours. Other female friends and I have been ignored or avoided by our boyfriends while they killed things on the TV screen.

Ive also learned that video games are like children to many guys. Never, joking or serious, insult a video game in front of the boy playing it. He will become sulky and possibly even belligerent. Either way, youre belittling something that is incredibly important to them. I guess its like when someone calls my major useless. Its not just about the video game;

youre insulting the person playing the video game, too.

Finally, someone invented a video game system for everybody: the Wii. More specifically, Wii Sports. Oh man, its amazing. Ive wasted so many hours of my life on Wii tennis and Wii bowling. The Wii simulates real sports by tracking your hand motions when you hold or move the Wiimote. Theres even a wrist strap to prevent you from accidentally throwing it into the screen or purposely chucking it at better players. What better way is there to spend these bitter cold days than playing baseball with no bat, golf with no clubs, or boozing with no gloves? Thats right, none. You can also fake your fitness level. Theres nothing like a video game telling you that you have the agility of a 42-year-old woman.

The best part is the Wiis you play with. You get to choose your own face shape, hair color, eyebrows, etc. Most people have the staple silly Miis, like Samuel L. Jackson, or, as my suite has, Upsidular, a man with an upside-down head. So many possibilities, so little time. So girls and other people not usually involved in the video game world, stop hating and play some Wii tennis!