I’m Just a Girl

Cause I’m just a girl, little ‘ol me
Don’t let me out of your sight
-No Doubt

I normally don’t PUG raids unless it is for 25 Mans, but the weekend of Valentines day my guild cancelled our normal Satursday run. So instead those of us who wanted to raid 10 man Naxx were left to fend for ourselves.

I have gotten a new puppy, a cocker spaniel named Tessa, who has been keeping me busy. That weekend though, my parents wanted to watch her, so I left her at their house.

This ment I had an uninterrupted weekend of play. I was doing daily quests to get my rep up with various factions (Got Ebon Blade and Argent Crusade Exalted, now working on Wyrmrest). When I get a pst from a friend I hadn’t talked to in a long time. He asked if I wanted to take his place in a Naxx Pug. I figured, “Hey why not, if the pug has already gotten down the easy quarters and are still plowing though content then it can’t be a bad pug.” I was a bit afraid as with my guild I had only seen two quarters and so didn’t know the other fights well. I was even more worried when I saw the guild tags, there was about 1 member from each of the top raiding guilds on my server.  Seems the Valentines weekend had displaced other guild’s raid times as well.

I joined the group and get the vent information. I stay quite as they are trying to find a tank replacement as well. Vent was…interesting. I’m use to a very family friendly guild, so vent is always fun with jokes and things like that. This group? A bunch of guys cussing and vulgar jokes. I continue to stay quite until they start asking, “Does everyone know the next fight?” One guy says no, and the others start to sound pissy. I speak up and say “No sorry, Azzarrea the rogue hasn’t done this fight before, if you could explain it that would be nice.” Dead silence follows this statement, they hadn’t expected a woman’s voice.

Then the RL starts to calmly explain the fights, and I hear the change in his voice. The cussing stops and instead everyone is on their best behaviour. We whipe once on Gluth, but then we get the hang of it, and crush through the construct quarter and militarty quarter with no other major wipes until we reach the 4 horsemen.  During that time everyone is friendlier on vent than how they were before they realized I was a girl. The RL continues to direct me exactly how I need to as well, giving me Rogue specific instructions which was extrodinarily helpful.

About halfway through the run the RL psts me and asks if “I have an emotional attachment to the guild I’m in.” I laugh because the way he put it was dead on. I explain to him that my guild leader and raid leaders are my real life best friends.  I was curious so I ask why he wanted to know.  He said that I had been doing a great job, that I had amazing “situational awareness” and could adapt to different and difficult situations well and that was a skill raiders needed but wasn’t something they could learn. Either one had it or one didn’t. I thank him for the nice comments and the offer but said I’d continue on with my own guild. He said he understood but if anything changes I’d have a place in his guild.

I was shocked. I like raiding a lot and I think I’m good at it, but I’d never think a hard core raiding guild would think my skills were up to their level, as I don’t raid in a typical Rogue raiding spec.  lol I’m not sure if it was my skills or my voice he liked?

Later on in the run, he then psts me again and asks why I chose to be a Rogue “Cause most girls choose something more like…a priest”. Again, I’m higly amused by this comment, and I explain, my friend who knew me really well suggested being a Rogue because they are stealthy and kill thinks quickly, and she was right, I loved the class and have always played it. He still pushes that most girls play healers, and I explain I liked the artful assissian of the Rogue, cause I use to do a lot of marital arts.

After we got to the four horsemen we started having trouble, so we decided to call the run. It had been a lot of fun, and right as I left group, another raiding guild offered me an invite to their guild, which I also had to turn down.

I’m still amused by this run. On one hand it was a great raiding experience to learn fights that my guild isn’t currently doing. On the other, it was an insightful expample that the top raiding guilds on my server do not have a large base of female players. In my guild, since we are a family friendly guild, we have a lot of spouse pairs in the guild, so having female players isn’t unusual. But with this run, they were shocked to hear my voice, and completely adjusted their behaviour to be more appropriate, they were more helpful, and one case I was hit on.

I also saw the assumtion that girls only play clothie or healer classes.  Girls can enjoy the DPS aspect of killing just as well any guy. We aren’t predisposed to “weaker” classes or have a natural desire to be motherly/nurturing to heal people. (However we may have a predisposition to playing Night or Blood elves based only off their looks.) Now I am assuming since the RL didn’t sound like a 12 year old boy, but instead in his 20’s that his comments were based soly on a need to continue a conversation with me, and were not ment to be sterotypical at all, however it did bring up an intersting mindframe of some male gamers.

I’ve heard of other female players hide their gender and never tell anyone due to thoughts of reprisal or being treated like a weaker player. I’ve never had anyone have a problem with my gender. Most of the time, guys are suprised and then friendly or helpful towards me. I’ve not had people treat me like a second class citizen or think I can’t play as well as guys. I have had though, one guy start stalking me through the game, but that was easily fixed with ignoring all his toons and reporting him to a GM.

I guess I’ve always been friends with gamer guys, that I’m used to accepted as an equal and not treated differently at all. But I guess on some level, guys will always see me as just a girl.

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~ by azzarrea on February 27, 2009.

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