There’s been a lot of chatter lately about female video gamers.
The game industry has long been considered a boys club, although in 2013, of the 59% of Americans who played video games, 48% were female, according to the Entertainment Software Association. And a recent study in the UK found that more women than men play video games: 52%, which is up from 49% a few years ago.
But those numbers account for all games. That includes console games, computer games, and mobile games.
Disney, however, has found a way to get more girls involved in console gaming with its “Disney Infinity” video game. “Infinity” is an interactive open-world game, where you buy figures that then connect to the game and interact with each other.
“We had assumed that we were going to be a 70/30 male to female split, and what had actually ended being is 55% boys, and 45% girls,” John Vignocchi, the executive producer behind “Disney Infinity,” told Business Insider. “Now in comparison to other products in the gaming space, most of them are about 80/20 or 90/10 when it comes to males to females.”
But that’s where the Disney brand recognition comes in, not to mention specific characters who might be considered geared toward female players, such as Elsa from the movie “Frozen,” or Merida from “Brave.” In fact, Elsa is one of the top sellers for the game, Vignocchi said.
“So we thought, ‘We’re Disney, we have the [intellectual property] that obviously appeals to females, but will the female gamers crawl out of the woodwork to play this game?'” Vignocchi said. “And the answer ended up being ‘yes,’ and in a way that we never expected.”
But it gets even better for the “Infinity” team.
“We’ve got just as many teenagers and nonparent adults playing ‘Infinity’ as we do 6-12 year olds,” Vignocchi said
. “We call it internally a four-quadrant property. When you hit a four-quadrant property, that’s when you’ve made something with long-lasting staying power at the company.”
A four-quadrant property is when something appeals to young people, old people, females, and males. A good example of this, he said, would be the “Pirates of the Caribbean” films or “The Avengers.”
“‘Infinity,’ believe it or not, has become a four-quadrant franchise for the company in the Interactive space, which is the first that we’ve ever had,” he said. “It’s wild to see who exactly is playing this game.”