“Some of our historical competitors in the console space have been a bit more masculine and a bit more mechanical in their approach,” Phil Harrison, Google VP and head of Stadia, said in an interview with CNN Business.
Stadia is taking a more gender-neutral approach. Google is selling controllers that come in white, black or Wasabi green. (Nintendo, which made the Switch Lite in bright colors like turquoise and yellow, is another outlier in designing for a gaming audience that includes women as well as men.)
Google looked at hundreds of colors and polled thousands of gamers before deciding on Wasabi. What Google found, according to its director of design Isabelle Olsson, is this color had “universal appeal.”
“Both men and women gravitated towards this color. It ended up being super gender neutral but still very expressive,” she said. “It’s really hard to find colors like that.”
Love it when companies try to be inclusive by…selling products in different colors. And by different colors I mean the same colors that their “masculine” competitors use. I know the “girls only like pink and pastels” stereotype is still fairly common in marketing, but bragging about how a green controller means that Stadia is designed with women in mind feels out of touch and out dated in a very specific way, especially since there are no shortage of examples of how gaming can be actively hostile in ways that Wasabi green doesn’t fix.
Traditionally, gamer gear has been manly. Microsoft (MSFT)'s Xbox controller comes in colors like electric blue or firetruck red. Sony’s controllers are available in black as well as various shades of neon and camo. And Nvidia’s angular, black controller looks a little too much like Darth Vader’s mask.
This bit wasn’t in quotes so I guess CNN just decided that women don’t like the colors blue, red, black, neon (any color that’s too bright?), camo, angles, or Darth Vader.