Why I Chose to Blog and Not Vlog as A Female Gamer and What I’ve Learned Along the Way

I finally reached my 100th post a couple weeks ago and it had me thinking where I want to do with my future content or whether I would move to a different platform. That has been on my mind as I do enjoy creating content. But if I want to eventually generate revenue, vlog might be the better option for me to support my craft full-time. I did purchase a SEO handbook but it didn’t apply to what I want to accomplish for this blog. In fact, it left me feeling even more depleted and let’s not even talk about the marketing side, I already feel overwhelmed.

According to the SEO book, which I will not advertise, the success of a blog is measured based on making money. Well, I am far from that. I came into blogging like many people because I enjoy writing as a creative outlet. So the likeliness of making money is pretty darn slim since I’m not writing to a particular audience. As mentioned before, this blog has been a very good friend. Even if it’s just talking into the void as many amateur bloggers would often fear, sometimes it’s nice to get things off the chest as if you are talking to someone. I still have yet a lot to learn how to balance creativity with business if I eventually want to make passive income from what I naturally enjoy doing.

When I started writing for my old blog back in 2016, which actually titled Halsdoll.com, (It really is my pen name inspired by Shakespeare’s play Henry IV: Part II) I just wanted to share poems and connect with like-minded folks or just have someone to talk to. Fellow female bloggers I followed at the time were either students or lonely first-time moms. They enjoyed reading about games but preferred posts about self-care, beauty products haul and books. Those things are enjoyable to read but it is not the content I want to create. All I wanted to do was discuss games and write poems to fill up the quietness of the lonely evenings I had to endure after work. But those days have passed. Now I write with a purpose. Meaningful conversation is hard to come by especially for those who do a lot of solo activities.

I realized there are two types of female gamers: one who plays to past time (no wonder there are so many beautiful women who stream on Twitch) and one who are enthusiast about the medium. I fall into the second group. Finding a group of passionate gamers, especially female players who appreciate game for its creativity and aesthetic is hard. And what made it more alienating is that I am not at all a competitive gamer despite the fact I like fighting and challenging video games. Speed run and rank never meant anything to me in video games, unless I’m working on a trophy just to complete it for completion’s sake. If anything, I’m competitive against myself. I prefer teamwork than competitive play if I have to play with people.

Then I started to cater my writing towards the gaming enthusiasts. Writing for an audience that I am not familiar with was difficult. I had to be mindful of my thoughts but soon begin to feel weary and tired. I did not want to engage in battle of the sexes debate such as objectification of women in video games and neither did I want to make false accusation and assumption about the opposite sex. Labeling people is something I dislike, so I tried to avoid it because it causes prejudice and discrimination, which unfortunately everyone has experienced some form of discrimination in their lifetime. It’s just how the world is. Humans are visual creatures. For instance, I have been referred to being a damsel in distress by many people. I often wonder why that is the case. Then I realize representations in media do matter very much. In fact, if I could pick a video game character I resemble most is Elena from Pandora Tower. She has some form of disability but she makes it up with emotional strength and intelligence. But to the average person, many would assume she is just a silent object or just a support role for the heterosexual male. I personally never thought of her as a silent object. I never thought of myself as one. I thought she was pretty strong. Maybe it’s time for people to reevaluate what strength means, especially in video games.

pandora-tower-weak strong female character

When playing multiplayer games, I noticed the discrimination. As a gamer, I like to play as an offense player. I noticed the authority I get from players when they assumed I’m a guy. It felt nice when they asked for tips and they looked up to me. Rarely do I get a pushback. But if they know I’m female, then the tone becomes a bit different. What I have learned through this experience is that online interaction is just a miniature world of the real world and I don’t know how I feel about it. I think that’s part of the reason why I prefer gaming alone, figuring things out myself. It’s a sense of achievement. However, the downfall of playing alone is that it’s hard to make gaming friends. In the online world, rarely do I see female players discuss games for the sake of games which is why I don’t mind doing my Video Game Shopping List posts. They tend to be more casual and popular among readers. I think the last thing people want to do is read academic papers on video games. As much I love to study, even I get turned off by such content unless it’s insightful and full of humor. Video game is a form of entertainment not some scholarly text.

Playing games by myself made me realize that I once fell into the misconception that being female meant being the weaker sex based on how people treat me in person (well, I can’t blame them because I do travel alone a lot for someone as small as I am). But I learned that my gender has nothing to do how good or bad I am with games. It made me realize that I am as capable as anyone if I set my mind to do something. Discrimination happens when we create a mental shortcut to process information, so it’s natural to think our female kind is the weaker sex, but “weaker sex” has nothing to do with intelligence. Intelligence is just another form of strength. And liking a certain type of game doesn’t reflect superiority. One is more relationship based than strategy based. That’s all there is to it.

“Women love romance-related content. It’s nothing new.”- from √Letter.

√Letter Visual Novel for PS4
There’s some truth to this statement, but overall, it’s a sexist statement. Guys like romance too. That’s what I have learned from reading people’s blog and I think it’s pretty cool.

I guess what I am trying to get at with this whole discrimination talk is that my blog has been a sanctuary for me to express myself, and as a result I am happy. As the saying goes, “Do what you love, and love what you do.” I have been enjoying myself so far, fishing for metaphors (okay that sounds pretty cheesy but I just love to rhyme!) As mentioned earlier, I have considered other platforms so that I could reach the right audience but I like blogging so far because writing helps people become better thinkers. I also learn more through reading anyway when it comes to exchanging information, which is why I chose blogging over vlogging.

I will continue to write about films, T.V shows and books, but niche video games have always been my biggest interest. It’s the game design and the thought process behind the making of games is what intrigued me, but more importantly, it asks tough questions and sees the world from an outsider perspective. For that reason, I always have a lot to say. What I’m really searching for is meaning in the media and that’s what this blog is all about.

I probably won’t publish many gaming content as it requires a decent amount of time gaming and the fact I only play a few games per a year and I play it thoroughly to give it an accurate rating. I mentioned about games because it’s my main hobby and it is just something to be expected in the future for this blog because my backlog is going no where. I could do streaming like most gamers but I don’t see myself as an entertainer. When I play games, I like to take my time. I play to think as oddly as it sounds.

If you are new to my blog, please check out some of my favorite posts I wrote in no particular order:

Thanks for reading. It feels nice to get some stuff off of my chest.

-Halsdoll