Top 5 | Female Empowerment Then & Now
March 8th marks International Women’s Day! Over the years, this holiday has evolved and changed, and we have changed and grown with it.
To honor the evolution of International Women’s Day, we have picked five of our favorite games designed by women, spanning over the past forty years!
Suzanne Goldberg | Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective
The first on our list has one of the richest histories! The Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective games are inspired by the Sherlock Holmes stories that have been in print since the 1880s! 100 years later, gamers finally had the chance to try their deductive skills against Holmes.
As innovate cooperate games, the Consulting Detective series gives you multiple case files, maps, newspapers and more to pour over as you try to track killers, solve crimes, and beat Sherlock Holmes to the final deduction!
Winner of the prestigious Spiels des Jahres Board Game of the Year, Goldberg’s beloved games saw a revival in 2017 with reprinted, updated cases, proving how one woman’s interpretation of a classic story can captivate gamers for decades!
Marsha J. Falco | Set
Designed in 1974, Set has one of the most unique origin stories for a card game! Marsha J. Falco was working as a geneticist, studying epilepsy in German Shepherds. As she created symbols to represent data and track patterns, she discovered that finding these patterns made for a fun puzzle!
Fast forward 14 years later, Set was released and became a favorite for challenging puzzle gameplay. Two awards and many years later, Set’s complexity, versatile gameplay styles, and interesting history is a wonderful reminder of how inspiration can come from anywhere!
Marie Cardouat | Dixit
Another Spiels Des Jahres winner (2010) Dixit is considered one of the best storytelling board games! What truly sets Dixit apart from other games is the captivatingly whimsical artwork. If it were not for the work of illustrator Marie Cardouat, Dixit may not have achieved the following it has now.
Since Dixit’s release, Cardouat has gone on to illustrate almost a dozen more games. The success of Dixit illustrates how every member of a team has the potential to make a difference!
One of the bestselling games of 2019, Wingspan copies have been almost as elusive as some of the birds the game features. Wingspan is the first game by designer Elizabeth Hargrave, and is illustrated by a team of amazing female artists.
Hargrave pushed against stereotypes put on women by creating Wingspan with mathematical precision and scientific accuracy. Women in STEM fields make up less than 30% of the workforce and are generally paid less. Hargrave has been praised for her dedication to scientific accuracy, her precise and exhaustive design process, and, of course, that the game is a hoot!
Hargrave and Wingspan have demonstrated that despite a lack of representation, women can operate scientifically, and do so with great success!
Note: Wingspan is in high demand and short supply! Click the blue “Email When Available” button on the product page to be the first to know when the game returns to our shelves!
Our list begins with a game based on popular media, and it ends with one too! One of our newest and most unique roleplaying games we have seen, Something is Wrong Here is based on the strange and surreal works of David Lynch.
Designer Kira Magrann interprets Lynch’s work through a deck of cards that the Facilitator uses to guide players through the game's themes. Something Is Wrong Here uniquely blurs the lines between player and character, allowing for an intimate and thought-provoking experience!
Magrann has contributed to other RPG anthologies, such as Tragedies of Middle School and the timely #Feminism nano-game anthology. Magrann and her games encourage us to continually look at who we are and what we want, and to have fun in the process!
Feeling Empowered? Great!
Do something with your inspiration and sign up to learn how to write roleplaying adventures or design games! For a further trip back in time, check out last year’s International Women’s Day Staff Picks!
On August 18, 1920, women were granted the right to vote. 100 years later, honor the hard work of the suffragettes and make sure you get out and vote!
Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective - a cooperative mystery with rich storytelling
Set - a fast puzzle-y game that can be played cooperatively, competitively, solo, and more!
Dixit - a beautiful storytelling game with a competitive twist
Wingspan - a complex, scientific, and addictive game with an avian theme
Something is Wrong Here - a roleplaying game inspired by the works of David Lynch
#Feminism - an anthology of short roleplaying games written by women that discuss women’s issues
Written by Johnni Medina