(This post was written on May 6th - the data may have changed by whenever you're reading this, but I bet they have the same basic results. For some reason, although published several days later, it is still post-marked to Monday.)
"How do we get women to play games?"
"Get more women to design games!" or "Get women to make games for women!"
Seen Hollywood? Notice that at least 80% of the writers and directors are white males? Even on romance movies?
Basically ALL of the IMDb's sidebar movies (top, recent, and soon-to-be released) are written by men, nearly all of which have white-sounding names. "Tracy" isn't even a girl, he's just an unfortunate man. Well, as unfortunate as a rather high-profile Hollywood writer can be considered to be...
There is ONE movie on their sidebar by a woman, written and directed by Julia Loktev... and it looks pretty damn indie, given that it's her first movie in which she does not play herself.
Ooh, look, "The Invisible" has a female co-writer.
Thats two women, out of the roughly twenty movies on the side bar - roughly forty names. Roughly thirty-eight of which are men, and probably almost entirely white.
I'm not saying we should emulate the movie business. Partly, I think we're a fundamentally different beast. Partly, I think that the movie business is nasty.
But nobody says "Hollywood needs to attract more female audiences!" I mean, sheesh, Casablanca was written and directed almost entirely by guys - one women credited for part of the play. Breakfast at Tiffany's? Entirely male. Old examples, but still highly regarded as appealing to women, right?
I'm all for more women in the games industry. (Although, honestly, I'd rather you all became rocket scientists and geneticists. They need more warm gray matter of any kind. And, of course, rocket scientists and geneticists are cuter.) But "more women" is obviously not the tried and true method of appealing to a female audience. The tried and true method is that somebody - I don't give a damn as to their sex - develops a knack for appealing to a female audience.
That could mean you.
I'm not saying we couldn't use more women. I am saying that you don't have to wait. Hollywood creates movies that appeal to women even though they lack anything resembling equality. There's no need to wait. If you think you can create something that appeals to a female audience either entirely or in part, do it. Don't cop out.
Unfortunately, I can't. I'm kind of a sci-fi testosterone junkie. The closest I'll come to creating Casablanca is seeing how many gunfights they'll let me include. :P