Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

According to some random infographic¹, over 60% of the mobile gaming demographic is female. This kind of game is absolutely being advertised during the Super Bowl. They're just not on the radar of "hardcore" gamers who tend to look down on console and especially mobile players.


I didn't want to get into it, but I would like to make a distinction, that I hope should be obvious in retrospect, and is different from the usual "casual"/"hardcore" distinction:

Some people play games; but some other people are only addicted to spending money on slot machines. The kind of mobile "game" you see Super Bowl ads (or, really, any TV ads) for are almost exclusively actually just slot machines at their core, with any game mechanics being tacked-on afterthoughts.

(If you wouldn't let your own children play a given "game", and your intuitive reasoning is the same as why you wouldn't let them wander freely in a casino—then you probably should mark such titles down under the "casino" tally, not the "games" tally, no?)

Importantly, the audiences for these two types of... experiences, let's call them—are mostly non-overlapping sets of people. Plenty of people are addicted to these slot-machine apps but would never play an actual "game", no matter how casual it was. They're not in it for game-mechanical "fun"; they're in it for variable-scheduled dopaminergic rewards. And, vice-versa, the more of an experienced "gamer" someone is—the more actual games they've played (where even FarmVille with all its dark patterns is still a game)—the more they'll have a taste for actual fun brought about by game mechanics, and so the more clearly they can intuitively feel that these slot-machine apps aren't providing such "fun."

Once you take these slot-machine non-games and their mostly non-gamer audiences out of consideration, then things do line up the way I described: there are no game companies targeting women bothering to spend much on advertising.

(There are, however, plenty of games without gendered targeting that have AAA ad spend. Pokemon, for example.)

Yeah as I alluded to in this thread I believe most gamers have been female for some time, but somehow for many people (read: many men) they don't 'count' because they're mobile games, or casual games, or not real games. At least that's the responses I've got every time the subject came up in previous discussions.

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact