Meet the (video) game-changers
Our pick of games that aren’t full of sexist nonsense
It’s Video Games Day today, oh yes. We’re celebrating by sharing our pick of games that aren’t full of sexist nonsense. Because it’s worth having a special day for that, right?
Set in a post-apocalyptic future 1,000 years hence, Horizon Zero Dawn features cool female protagonist Aloy, who’s having none of that male gaze, ta very much. Battling a world overrun by killer robots, Aloy’s backstory is heartbreaking: an orphan, she’s rejected by her matriarchal tribe and then has to become a warrior to gain acceptance. It’s impossible not to root for her (and your own gaming skills) from the word go. £24.99, Guerrilla Games
Calling fans of The Walking Dead, The Last Of Us (Remastered) is set in a post-apocalyptic (game creators do love the aftermath of a catastrophe) America ravaged by a destructive virus. At the heart of it is the relationship between smuggler Joel and a 14-year-old girl called Ellie who he’s tasked with protecting. Yes, survival is pretty important, but it’s the drama and Ellie’s portrayal which makes it such a standout game (you can also play as Ellie in The Last Of Us: Left Behind). £28.95, Naughty Dog
Before The Storm is a new three-episode graphic adventure that acts as a prequel to the 2015 game, Life Is Strange (lauded for the relationship between its two main female characters Chloe and Rachel). But while the latter touched upon a queer subtext, Before The Storm places Chloe’s burgeoning sexuality at its core. It’s a step in the right direction for diversity and representation but also, crucially, it presents teenagers as works-in-progress. £10.57, Deck Nine
In the first Dishonored, the character of Emily Kaldwin was a kidnapped 10-year-old who was rescued by a male assassin named Corvo (also the main played character). This time, in Dishonored 2, Emily now runs a country (!) and players can choose to play as her, too. Emily is clever, brave, flawed and thrust into a position she wasn’t expecting – in other words, she’s relatable. You won’t find any idle stereotypes here. £9.99, Arkane Studios
With not one but two central female protagonists (the Indian-Australian Chloe Frazer and the black South African Nadine Ross), Uncharted: The Lost Legacy stands out from the crowd thanks to the conversations between the characters. Between the perilous climbing and dangerous action, the pair become believable and sympathetic people who also have a nice one-liner or ten. £24.99, Naughty Dog