May 17, 2008

Jo Garcia: Cyber Girl of the Year isn't faking it

Jo Garcia

Jo Garcia has been voted "Cyber Girl of the Year." It's hard not to be skeptical. Hot models who are game-challenged are often used to promote product, and Jo Garcia at first glance seems to be yet another pretty face.

Turns out Garcia actually is a bona fide player. She owns a Nintendo DS and a PSP. Some of her favorite games include Xenosaga and Radiata Stories.

She complains about the geek myth - the popular misconception that gamers are nerdy types who wear glasses. She's also down on gender bias and thinks women are in fact more discriminating consumers when it comes to games, not as easily sucked in by flashy promotions: " ... if a woman wants to play video games, she's going to buy it regardless of the ads."

Garcia clearly wants to straighten out a few stereotypes when it comes to the gaming world. So what about the Playboy stereotype - isn't she just another hot bod in Hef's stable of lookers?

Maybe the reason there are misconceptions out there about female players is because, unlike a Jo Garcia, they aren't as likely to get profiled. Not that Garcia's center-fold good looks should be held against her, but her looks are really the point aren't they - otherwise we wouldn't be reading about "Cyber Girl's" thoughts on the gaming world.

A more diverse representation of women players and producers (Jade Raymond comes to mind), would be helpful. There is definitely an attitude out there on the part of some male players and the truth is, Jo Garcia's thoughts on gaming will be duly noted by some because she's well ... hot.