Brown Girl Gamer Code at MECCA CON: Black Girls are the Game Round table!
This past September, BGGC members Brandii (Founder), Asia, MsPinky313, and Kierra presented at Mecca Con in Detroit, Michigan! We hosted a round table to discuss Black Women in Gaming. The presentation focused on Black women in the gaming industry and Black women identified video game characters. #BlackGirlsAreTheGame is a hashtag created by BGGC member Asia (mentioned above) to combat the myth that Black women in gaming are unicorns. You can check out the history of the hashtag in an article written by Asia here.
Mecca Con stands for Midwest Ethnic Convention for Comics & Arts! It focuses primarily on film and art, therefore presenting about video games made our presence very unique and one of its kind. Learn more here
We had a amazing turn out!
Some of the women featured in our presentation are listed below!
Lisette Titre- Montgomery: Tiger Woods Golf, The Simpsons, Dante’s Inferno, Dance Central 3, SIMS 4, South Park, and Transformers Age Of Extinction for Android and iOS. Her most recent project is Psychonauts 2 with Double Fine Productions. https://youtu.be/kq3UxNioKbw
Zora Ball: Became World’s Youngest Game Programmer @ 7 years old in 2013https://youtu.be/9oEZjpEqCwM
Meeya Davis: Detroit Native, voice and Motion capture of Tilly Jackson from Red Dead Redemption 2
Why we Felt This Topic is Important
Black women are one of the least represented groups when it comes to the gaming and tech industry. When asked to name a Black woman video game character or someone who works in the industry, people are often unable to name at least 1 to 2 people or characters. We tested this during our round table and most people could not even name one.
One of the outcomes of our presentation was for attendees to be able to leave this space and be more knowledgeable about the work being done in the industry. We were intentional in making sure each slide in our presentation listed a Black woman video game character or someone working in the industry. Our hope is to spread awareness about the lack of representation of Black women and be able to have conversations on their own about this topic.
Here are some statistics the we discussed with our audience:
Only 3 percent of game developers are African-American, In comparison, 76 percent of developers are white. (International Game Developers Association: 2016 Developers Satisfaction Survey)
As of 2017 there were only about 26 playable, original main character black female characters. (Hidden Figures: Unlocking Representations of Black Women in Video Games, 2017)
Of the 26 black female characters, more than half are portrayed by white female voice actresses. (Hidden Figures: Unlocking Representations of Black Women in Video Games, 2017),
At the conclusion of our round table, we could not let everyone leave without knowledge of the communities out here supporting Black women in gaming spaces! If you would like to support or know someone who would benefit from joining, check out our list below! We made sure to provide handouts for everyone as well.
Brown Girl Gamer Code
Black Girl Gamers
Black Women Talk Tech
Black Girls Code
Games that Center Black Women Characters
Elena: Street Fighter III
Vanessa Lewis: Virtual Fighter
Tanya: Mortal Kombat 4
Lisa Hamilton: Dead or Alive
Christie Monteiro: Tekken. Afro Latinx
Shinobu: No more heroes
Aisha: Rumble Roses
Anesthesia: Rumble Roses
Rouge: Power Stone
Hair Nah created by Momo Pixel
Black Women in RPGs
Sheva: Resident Evil
Rochelle: Left 4 Dead 2
Aveline de Grandpre: Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation
Clementine: The Walking Dead
Jade: Beyond Good and Evil
Purna Jackson – Dead Island and Dead Island: Riptide
Vella: Broken Age
Vivienne: Dragon Age: Inquisition
D’arci Stern: Urban Chaos
Fran: Final Fantasy XII
Samantha Alexander: Hunter: The Reckoning
Nix from Infamous 2
Can you name additional games that center Black Women Characters? Are there Black Women in the Gaming and/or Tech industry that you look up to or want to highlight? Let us know in the comments!