Why are there so many HGs genderlocked to male?


I think you’re missing the irony here.


Matilda of England fought Stephen to a standstill, but she secured the right for her son Henry Curtmantle to become Stephen de Blois’ heir as a compromise. Her husband Geoffrey the Fair also helped because he was one of the most powerful French nobles of his time. Especially when he conquered Normandy on top of ruling Anjou, Maine, and Touraine.

Don’t get me wrong, the fact that she managed to do this was astounding.

Matilda of Tuscany was another great example of a strong female ruler. Managed to lead her armies to victory against Heinrich Salian during the Investiture Crisis and ensured the Concordant of Worms.

She even personally led her armies and had enough authority that Heinrich V acknowleged her preeminence in Italy.


Matilda Of Tuscany is the CK2 character I loved to play way back when the game first came out. I loved working and working until eventually her great-grandaughter could be Empress. Usually I opted against trying for Holy Roman Empress because not only was it flatly illegal for a woman to be Holy Roman Empress, even if you changed that you had to persuade ~30 men that she should be Empress when these thirty men were also on the ballot so I said “forget it, I’m going to go make my own Empire! And I’ll maybe go convert to that weird Eastern heresy that says Lucifer is Jesus’s brother or whatever because I hear they’re fine with women being Empress and their husband being subordinate to her if her husband is her younger brother!”

For reference that is what Catholics really believed about Messalians, and in CK2 you can literally convert to them, change the succession laws, have your eldest daughter inherit, and then she can marry her younger brother and the message about this will have as it’s acknowledgement message “Hail Lucifier!” And your vassals will be pleased.

I usually converted to Catharism instead because it’s a lot less work and they allowed women to inherit on the same grounds as men and they just think the Pope works for the devil. I love CK2 so much because you can do that.

Then eventually they implemented game rules and I decided I’d make a high-stat custom female character and set the gender laws game rule to full equality because with a custom character I couldn’t earn Empressive or Smash The Patriarchy (it is a pun about the five Patriarchs; the Pope is Patriarch of Rome) anyways. So I set about being a good devout Christian woman and just trying to be a good laywoman of the Benedictine Order, and then abruptly I was Holy Roman Empress. By accident. I eventually figured out that it was because a bunch of the grand dukes thought the current Emperor sucked and they told him either he’d abdicate in favor of me or they would make him, but I was completely blindsided because I was too busy helping tend flower gardens at a monostery to pay any attention to anywhere except Tuscany and figured I’d leave the Emperor stuff to the Emperor and all the other Electors and basically I just cast my vote for whoever had majority support.

That was incredibly hilarious and memorable and it made my week, but ultimately I usually set the gender rule to “Default” and I started as close descendent of Charlemagne and eventually when the black death hit it killed my current Empress Of The Romans and the title of “Augustus” was inherited by her daughter and with my third consecutive Empress of the reformed Roman Empire I finally got Empressive.

Also while the default or even stricter “historical” game rules means it’s hard for a woman to become a military leader I often play as Norse and I raise daughters as soldiers so I can make them Shieldmaidens because Vikings do not need a convoluted marriage web to claim a foreign throne. Instead basically you yell “I’m planning to go conquer Britain because I hear their farmland is better than Norway! WHO’S WITH ME?” And then you have two years to wait for people to show up to help before you have to declare war or they’ll be annoyed and head home.


I think yours is the politest over reaction I’ve had to something I’ve said all month. No need to apologise to me :slight_smile: Misunderstandings are a bit of a given on forums from time to time as you’re not talking to people face to face.


And yet that may be the response you have to live with, contented or not.

I love my readers/customers, but they are not gods, and I know I can’t make them all happy. I’m sure Devon takes a similar perspective (he’s articulated versions of it on the forum plenty of times).

There comes a point where you need to let things go, however wrong-on-the-internet someone is. If you’ve made your point (especially if you’ve done so repeatedly and at length) and the author/ someone else on the forum still doesn’t agree, that’s where it’ll have to stand.


Are there really that many though? I can only think of five total(maybe I missed some, Idk), two of them leaning more towards resource management games(so who cares tbch)… might be more if you include WiPs(although I haven’t found one myself) I guess.

I personally usually don’t end up reading them if they’re male locked. I try them but can never get in to it tbh. Exceptions being the great tournament 1 and 2, the 2nd I regret reading.
I feel the same about female locked(more so because in the ones I’ve read you’re also forced to be straight).

And I’m the same with games, I just don’t like when RPGs(in more linear story-driven games I usually don’t care) force me to play male OR female, so I usually just don’t play them, the rare exceptions to this being the Witcher 2 and 3.

Don’t wanna be that guy but, as someone who much prefers to play as female if I have the choice, I don’t see how this is a problem. It’s simply up to the writer. And it’s up to you if you want to read it or not.

This isn’t a reply to anyone specific but more aimed towards everyone who seem to take issue with the writers’ choice to write how they want to.


This was a list I compiled back in Feb, though there are a couple additions…

By the way, in case anyone is curious, here is my list for Male Gender Locked games on Hosted Games. I’m going to include games in the same series as separate entries. I also admit I may be off on a couple.

Sabres of Infinity
Guns of Infinity
Lords of Aswick
A Study in Steampunk: Choice of Gaslight
The Great Tournament 1
The Great Tournament 2
Treasures of the Forgotten City
Tale of a Kingdom - Swamp Castle
Doomsday on Demand
Somme Trench
Path of Light
The Sons of the Cherry
No Proper Thief (responses like ‘Puff out your chest, muscle man’ help solidify that)
New entry: Doomsday on Demand 2

Ones, I am a little uncertain about (I haven’t looked at them in a long time)
Factions: Raids of the Divided - This doesn’t allow one to pick gender but all the leaders of other factions are male, so it feels like the MC is male.
The Gangs of Old Camp

Female Gender-locked Games: (Note, this doesn’t include orientation)
The Courting of Miss Bennet
The Slayer of Evil

HG Gender Options Count Percentage
male 19 16.67%
female 2 1.75%
nonbinary 0 0.00%
male/female 43 37.72%
male/female/nonbinary 36 31.58%
never defined 14 12.28%

As for additional info, both female locked games were written by men, released in the last year, and one is under 60k words, while the other is largely word for word Pride and Prejudice.


Very interesting, thanks for the stats! That’s also a way higher percentage for games that don’t define the protafonist’s gender than I would have expected!


Probably nonhuman ones, like the game where you’re an iron atom. I think Day Off Work is undefined too?


Actually quite a few are. They’re the ones where you don’t define the protagonist’s gender at the start and neutral terms are used through the text instead. (For example Sons of the Cherry and Popcorn, Soda … Murder do this.)

Edit: You know I’m kind of interested, just what the proportion of male/female authors is for HG games. (My guess is there are more male authors, but sometimes usernames and author names can be tricky to tell for sure.) That’s actually quite interesting that neither female locked games were written by women and does go against the proposed reason that authors are writing for their own gender as the reason behind the difference.


From The Magician’s Burden onward, I’ll be writing all my games with male/female/nonbinary MCs as opposed to just male/female like in my first three games.

The only exception is Winter of the Bovine, which is genderlocked female. Nevermind that you’re a cow. :cow:


Very interesting stats, and I gotta say it’s disappointing seeing the actual numbers that less than half of them allow a nonbinary MC (even if you count the undefined ones). Plus none with a nonbinary-lock. That would be interesting to see.

I wonder what the numbers would look like with orientations thrown in the mix as well.

I would note that, while there’s very little gendered terminology, given that you’re at atom, the opening scene somehow still refers to another atom that you’re doing fusion with using female pronouns, which I found unnecessary and kind of annoying. We’re both atoms? Why are you making the, uh, fusion option a “she”? :confounded:


I would want a further qualifier - pre 2017 releases vs post 2017 releases. Nonbinary was not as much as a focus prior as it has been recently and my suspicion is that the community is more aware and is responding to this need.


Well then. cracks knuckles


That’s an interesting stat. Thanks for sharing it!


19 out of 114, Idk if you’re trying to say that’s alot or not. But considering among those 19 are lords of aswick and swamp castle, both of which are mainly resource management games, the two* games in the infinity series, the great tournament series(basically the same case as lords of aswick and swamp castle, but a tad more story-driven), and the doomsday on demand series, and somme trench which is male locked for historical reasons(same as the courting of miss bennet one), that’s 9* out of 19, 4 of which really might as well be under “undefined”, 4 of which should count as 2 because they’re a series following the same protagonist(when I said I could think of 5, this was my thought-process, infinity series =1, etc. ). One of the other 19 is study in steampunk, and as for the other 9*, I can’t find them tbh. Are WiPs counted in those statistics? Are CoGs? Or is this strictly for published Hosted Games?

At the end of the day, my whole point was it wouldn’t matter if 99% of them were locked either way, it’s the writers’ choice.


Even in resource management it is annoying when you’re gender or orientation locked, even if it is only a cosmetic thing.
The games I grew up with used to almost universally define the player as male and straight, while I obviously have no problems with the male part I was less enamoured with the straight part. Thus there used to be some resource management and politics games where my virtual managers and politicians of old used to be married to the job, because I as a player did not like and ignored the straight/girlfriend roleplaying/flavour portions of those games.


As the thread (and similar) have illustrated however, it DOES matter to people who are NOT male (cis, trans or presenting).
And to some guys it matters too.

Because, as asked time and time before just to be met with evasive answers, why does it (seemingly) matter so much then if the game is or appears as genderlocked to ‘female’.
Undercover got bad reviews because some guys assumed it’s locked.
Miss Bennet (albeit written by a guy) received bad reviews for being locked.

So, if it does not matter (and is the author’s decision), pray tell, anyone, how can this happen.


The vast majority of people who gave it bad reviews did so because they thought it was boring. In fact, on the Google Play Store, only four people gave it negative reviews for gender locking while three people either explicitly stated or at the very least mentioned giving it a high score BECAUSE it was gender locked to female (with a few more putting it as part of their reason). As for Undercover Agent, a lot of people were most likely confused because you don’t get to choose your gender and the cover clearly shows a female so they assumed we were playing as one.

As for why its a problem to some, I’ll explain why I don’t like it at least. When I play these stories I like to self insert. A lot of people do. With these type of games, I get to visualize my character in my head. This helps with immersion greatly. However, I can’t play as me if I’m called “she” all the time or they talk about me as though I’m a woman. So I avoid gender locked female games. I’m not going to downvote them, I just won’t play them. Which is how a vast majority of people who don’t like it feel. But while that isn’t ideal, its the authors choice. If the author chooses to make a game gender locked at the cost of sales, why not let them? They are writing the story. We, as readers, are not. Its easy to say, “Oh its just changing a few variables” or “Writing a female perspective is no different than writing a mans” but it might be hard to these authors. Or maybe they just don’t want to do it. Which is fine. It their story. Thats all I have to say on this subject.