While the gaming industry is desperately attempting to redefine itself to gain a higher appeal towards female gamers, Sony seem to be diverting itself by stereotyping their audience to just adolescent males. Studies from the Internet Advertising Bureau state that 52% of gamers are in fact female, however the Playstation Vita advertisement promoting the endless possibilities of Remote Play (which has now been taken down) appeals to the alleged remaining 48% by featuring an attractive female Doctor conveying erotic sexual innuendos.
Again, it’s important to highlight that Sony have since removed the advert, realising how illustrating female gamers in a sexual manner can be quite a narrow-minded view-point towards female gamers. The advert itself has sustained its position in the internet thanks to others backing up the video before it was removed, so the controversy of the advert has continued post-removal too.
The suggestive extreme close-ups which focuses the camera on the Doctors lips and the accompanied dialogue of playing “all day long” can of course generally entice the male audience, however it’s clear that Sony’s true intention was to evoke humour in-between these sexual innuendos.
“You could even join me…”
What other dialogue could intrigue a young male than implying excessive masturbation and that they could overcome the “shame” they feel upon it by joining this attractive female doctor? Perhaps the reason this risqué humour has received a mass negative backlash, might not be just due to the sexualisation of women itself, but for the actual lack of any gameplay or demonstration of the Remote Play feature, leading to a lack of relevancy of the advert itself to the Vita.
Remote Play is about the connectivity of the Playstation Vita and the Playstation 4, using the two devices in one combined manner. Yes, here’s where the audacious suggestions of being able to “join” the doctor tie in with the actual product, but surely a reveal of the actual gameplay and connectivity between the two consoles would’ve been a more relevant technique to advertise the product?
Nevertheless, Sony have now dismissed this advert from their claim, attempting to make the gaming audience to forget that they ever published it. It was a rightful move by Sony to remove the advert and prevent as much negative press as they could, however it’s easy to imagine how difficult it will be for some (particularly gamers with feminist interests) to forget such an advert.