First of all, you have to choose a nickname. I tried a series of names: "Fred", "Thomas" and "Patrick" went through fine, but if I tried "Melissa" "Jessica" or "Natasha", the system wouldn't accept them, and I was told to "Keep it clean, please."Whoa. I didn't know "Jessica", "Melissa", "Natasha" or "Lisa" are in any way dirty - unless, of course, being a girl is dirty.
I don't play Risk. The only game I'll play that takes more than 6 hours to finish is Monopoly®. I get bored, restless, and lose all interest. But a lot of women I know truly enjoy games like Risk. And it sucks that they are being completely excluded from this world; it sucks that a game that had previously been neutral in its box has chosen to become genderized, and has chosen to play to the basest cliches of what guys are interested in. I especially liked one of the comments, which declared "I'm sure it's not their attempt to alienate female customers. this game is a slow game in some circle [sic] and they are only trying to win people over". Brilliant deduction! Of course, women don't count as "people". That would just be silly. And making women feel completely unwelcome is the best way to win them over. Obviously, this is some nifty marketing tool based on reverse psychology.
What really miffs me is that this isn't even the first time Hasbro has blatantly played to gender stereotypes. I was already upset with them over the Queen Frostine thing, where they downgraded her to "Princess Frostine", sassed her up, and made her skinnier and way pink. Who thinks "pink" when they think of frost? Who, I ask you? No more. I've already written my angry letter about Candy Land, but now I'm writing another one about Risk. And I'm boycotting Hasbro, until Risk returns to being overtly gender neutral and possibly until Queen Frostine once again looks like she's ruling over a frosty land of winter and snow and hasn't accidentally fallen into a vat of cotton candy.
It's going to be Apples to Apples from here on out.
H/T to Feministing.