Is Dragon Age a Franchise Geared for Women?

I'd never actually chosen to roll a female hero, even when given the choice ... In DA2, I felt compelled to roll a female Hawke.

I loved Mass Effect.  I loved making all those choices, the story was awesome, and the fighting was fast paced. I tore through 1 and then played 2.  So when my husband suggested I try Dragon Age, I gave it a go.  DA2 was already out and I opted to play that first.  The graphics were beautiful and the story was enthralling.  I rolled a female Hawke and played it again… and again… and ok one more again.  I went back and tried out Origins and Awakenings.  They really appealed to me too.  I loved the combat, the hero, and the graphics in DA2, but DA1 had so many more appealing options, a wide variety of story arcs (that supported multiple game plays), and way way more control over your companions and your companion choices.  

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Prior to DA2, I’d never actually chosen to roll a female hero, even when given the choice.  I always chose male Shep.  I knew there were romance choices, but I didn’t make them focusing instead on saving the galaxy and sharpening my skills.  In DA2, I felt compelled to roll a female Hawke. I identified with the her completely and became really immersed.  I made romance choices and was invested in all of my choices in a way I hadn’t been before.

I loved this franchise so much that I actually reached out and joined a small fangirl community on Facebook, something else I’ve never done with a game.  It isn’t even my favorite game franchise and it still isn’t my all time favorite game. This spot is reserved for Bioshock thank you very much and I can’t imagine what could move that from its pedestal, maybe if this one blows (highly unlikely and I’ll let you know Thursday lol).  For some reason, the connection I have made with DA is a unique experience for me… or at least I thought it was unique for em.

Today at PAX East, I stumbled upon the Bioware room and a DA panel.  I listened and then stood in line to get signatures. My husband sat waiting. I looked over at him and noticed, he was not the only husband/boyfriend sitting. There were 4 or 5. Sitting. Waiting. Playing on iPhones. I looked more closely at the line and saw a majority of women in that line.

This sparked interested conversation with my spouse as we both came to a realization that perhaps my connection was not unique. Perhaps there were a large group of female gamers that really felt something for this franchise and these heroes specifically. Perhaps Bioware even intended that?  

Food for thought.

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