1. Why do you think authors started adding the option to play as a male?
Why not? If you can choose love interests, may as well have the gender choice too.
2. Do you like to play as a male protagonist?
Yes, but if there’s a choice of gender, I still choose female. I prefer to play as a male MC when the story is written with the intention of MC being a male.
3. Is a story truly different if the protagonist is male?
I guess this depends on the story. Again, I think if you are given the choice of gender, you won’t find much of a difference. But a story that’s written from a male MC perspective would be different to a lot of other ones on the platform.
3A. An argument is that even if you are a male, the character still acts ‘feminine’ thus is still technically a female lead story. This usually happens when the author just replaces the MCF with MCM without
changing any dialog. (Main Character Female / Main Character Male)
I didn’t really think about this until this discussion… I’d like to think there are stories that would put in the effort to make both the male MC and the female MC different and give them more believable characteristics depending, however I feel this would be rare. I can’t say I’ve read a story twice to find out for myself though, so who knows?
4. Should every story include an option to play as a male?
Well… I know I wouldn’t be up for that coding challenge any time soon I think if it’s the type of story line where you can have the choice, it would be great to add it in. But certain stories need to have certain MC’s, so I wouldn’t say every story needs it.
5. What are the benefits / disadvantages to writing a story with a male option.
I think one obvious disadvantage would be that you’d have thirteen year old girls spamming your fan mail with “why am I a boy?” and “I picked the wrong choice and now I’m a guy, can you change it?”
An advantage though, would be mad respect from the majority of the community, because we all know how difficult/time-consuming coding is.
6. Does Episode equally represent males in their own featured stories?
Don’t make me laugh @FallenAngelNight13 ! Not only do they not equally represent males in their own featured stories, but even when they give you male love interests, they’re so under developed and/or shady and/or one dimensional. If I were a guy reading half the featured stories, I’d be offended that this is how they’re representing us to millions of readers.
6A. Should Episode write a Gem - Featured story in which you can play as male.
Yes, absolutely. Practice what you preach. It’s a bit sad that they had a Male MC shelf not that long ago, but none of their own stories would have fit there. They’ve gotten to the point now where they need to rely on the community to include diversity.