Avatar dude looks like a lady

It’s come to this. The Associated Press today intrepidly tackles “gender-bending in online video games.” Writer Matt Slagle got Freeman Williams, a dentist in Houston, to go on the record about his predilections to fight crime in “City of Heroes” as female avatar Robotrixie. (The above picture is not of Robotrixie, though ya gotta believe the avatar pictured above isn’t too far off the mark.) "This has become my catharsis, my escape from the work world,” said Williams. Um, ya think? It seems like this might be pretty standard in virtual games, at least according to a psychologist whose small-sample study of male gamers found about half chose female alteregos. This will make for a pretty interesting dimension to marketing if virtual worlds like Second Life take off. Will advertisers target messages to Freeman or Robotrixie?

—Posted by Brian Morrissey