The number of women who play video games is growing, and this means more than just playing Mario and Luigi with the kids. Want to try out video and online games for yourself, or are you ready to move on to the next level? Fiona Cherbak, president of games PR firm ThemePark Studios in Texas and head of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) Women in Games Special Interest Group (SIG), gives her top 15 picks for women.
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A study done by Eastern Carolina University’s Department of Recreation and Leisure in 2008 found that Bejeweled is the only game that reduces stress by an average of 54% across all test subjects. Bejeweled is a free game made by PopCap Games that can be played online or downloaded to a handheld device.
This game helps your memory, quick thinking, and ability to recognise images by keeping track of your progress as you go. Nintendo made Brain Age so that you can play a little bit every day to keep yourself challenged. They also made it for the Nintendo DS, which makes it easy to play Brain Age on the go. It also has a lot of Sudoku puzzles, which are a great way to clear your head and relax.
FarmVille, a simulation game about a farm made by Zynga, became a hit on Facebook in June 2009. Since then, more than 82 million people have signed up for the app, which lets them run a virtual farm where they grow crops and animals and sell them at the market. The game takes advantage of Facebook’s social networking features. Players invite their friends and post updates about their farms, which experts say is especially appealing to women.
Final Fantasy is the most popular role-playing game in the world right now. It was first released in Japan in 1987, and Nintendo brought it to the U.S. in 1990. Since then the epic story has been released several times over, following the story of four youths called the Light Warriors, who fight evil forces in the mythical world that includes humans, elves, dwarves, mermaids, dragons and robots. One of the main characters has always been a woman in the 20 years it has been on the market.
Flower was made by thatgamecompany in 2007 for the PlayStation 3, and it came out in the U.S. in February 2009. How much more relaxing can it get than watching the wind pick up flower petals as it flies through fields? Jenova Chen, who made the game, has said that she made it to make the player feel good, not to make them feel like they have to do something hard. This one-of-a-kind game that won an award is a perfect example of Zen.
Little Big Planet
User-made content is one of the most interesting parts of this puzzle video game for the PlayStation 3. Players can make their own systems, puzzles, and games that are part of the main game. Little Big Planet is a puzzle game where you control a character (Sackboy, Sackgirl, or the gender-neutral Sackperson) through a series of puzzles. There is also an online community where you can make your own games and challenge other players. The graphics, physics, and story of LBP have been praised by many people.
Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect 2 is available for both Xbox 360 and Windows. Its main focus is its story, which takes place in a made-up galaxy and is as complicated as a movie screenplay. You have to make tough decisions that will change how the game goes. In fact, since this is the second game in the series, you can bring your results from the first game into this one, which changes the world.
A Plague Tale: Innocence
A scary, dark, and sad story about innocence and making it through. Can your hearts and survival skills make you good enough for this part, ladies? Find out as you play the part of a young girl who is trying to protect a young child from dangerous rats and bad guys. Time to see how moral you are and how good a mother you are, ladies.
WHY YOU SHOULD PLAY A PLAGUE TALE:
Your skills, brain power, and patience are put to the test by the puzzles and difficult events that go along with the story.
It’s totally sneaky! We women love being sneaky so that no one knows we are up to no good. Find out how your character can sneak.
It is very realistic and will make you feel every emotion and problem that the characters go through.
Ori and the Blind Forest
This game is just amazing, and “breathtaking” is just one word to describe the world you will be exploring. Live through the eyes of a cute, curious, brave, and beautiful little creature on a mission to find your parents and, hopefully, get back with them. It will be full of dangerous natural forces, beautiful things, darkness, and a huge Owl who is afraid of light.
WHY PLAY “ORI” AND “THE BLIND FOREST”
This is a beautiful game that will grab and keep your attention. It takes place in a magical world called the Blind Forest, which adds to its beauty. Full of creatures that are mysterious, blind, and wise.
Art and light meet in a mysterious and interesting world that has never looked better.
Through the story of a Giant Owl who hates light, you can learn how light and darkness can live together and why they need each other.
Oxygen not Included
Build your strange little colony on an odd asteroid world, where you have to dig to stay alive and build your home. Don’t get too cranky, there is food and water, but it’s hard to find. Little colonists, try to stay warm and close to each other. You’ll find out that this asteroid has a mind of its own in this pixelated world. Show that you can be a leader.
DO NOT INCLUDE REASONS TO PLAY OXYGEN
You can live, fight, and stay alive in an asteroid base and other strange places in space.
Your patience and ability to stay alive are put to the test when you see that food, water, warmth, and fun are hard to find.
As the leader of a colony, it’s your job to keep your people alive, happy, and moving forward.