Imagine it. You’re sitting down to one of your favorite Disney movies, watching the well-loved story unfold before your eyes when suddenly the heroine of choice, in a stunning scene of sparkles and tailored finesse, gains her traditional princess garb. From as far back as Cinderella to Disney’s most recent flick, Frozen, a wide majority of the heroines have a scene dedicated to “transforming” into a princess—or maybe a “more marketable princess” in the case of characters like Elsa. By this point in our media culture, we’re so used to scenes like this that the possible underlying meanings don’t even cross our minds. Sure, they’re turning into a princess, but why? Are these transformations really all about the typical fairytale ending? I argue that no, they’re not. They’re more than a neat bow to tie a romantic subplot with and so much more than a tool for companies to sell princess garb (although that’s certainly part of it). Princess transformations are all about tapping into a positivity that’s accessible to both children and older audiences alike.
There’s nothing worse than seeing a game not getting the love it deserves. If you’re thinking to yourself, “I’ve never heard of this Child of Light game,” you’re not alone: the game was barely advertised and most—if not all—publicity was generated by word of mouth. This isn’t any surprise; I mentioned in an earlier post how games directed more towards a female audience receive much less advertising in general than games that are clearly intended for a more male-centric audience. And unless produced by a larger name developer, indie games don’t really get advertised anyway. Though Child of Light has that indie feel, it doesn’t change the fact that the game was still produced by Ubisoft. Not only that, but by their largest development studio—Ubisoft Montreal—as well. There’s no excuse for the lack of company generated buzz. I mean, look at it: wouldn’t you want to hype this game?