Through the Looking Glass: Gender and Empathy in VR Games

Gender and empathy in VR games

Virtual reality is an incredible tool.

There are so many practical applications for technology that can change the user’s perspective and let them see the world through a different set of eyes. Of particular interest are the opportunities afforded to storytellers by the ability to transform the player into a brand new person, and the kinds of experiences VR games can generate as players take new roles. This includes stepping into the shoes of someone of another gender.

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Talk the Talk: How VR is Changing In-Game Conversations

Alice Loading Human relationships in VR

Looping dialogue is the bane of every gamer’s existence.

Plenty of games focus on the experience of building relationships with non-playable characters. As a player progresses through a game, however, it’s easy to spot when corners have been cut with dialogue trees that feed back into each other. We can often end up being subjected to the same lines of exposition delivered multiple times as we seek to have more thorough conversations with characters within the game.

As virtual reality comes to the forefront of gaming, though, these shortcuts are going to have to disappear. Creating realistic, lifelike characters means new and innovative ways of building conversations with NPCs—and that means that gamers will be able to become all the more invested in the companions we pick up on our digital travels.

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