Veterinarian by profession and cosplayer by hobby, 27 year old Tanya Shringarpure loves to bring video game characters to life when she isn’t healing animals or putting them down. Going by the pseudonym Syrinx, costuming is serious business for her whenever she gets hired to cosplay at promotional events. Gaming mainly for fun, the Mumbai-based cosplayer prefers games such as Mario Kart, Street Fighter, and Kingdom Rush.
She doesn’t consider herself a hardcore gamer, but she admits to having a penchant for watching her more dedicated friends play through brutal games such as Bloodborne and Dark Souls. And it’s these vicarious gaming experiences that help her discover video game character designs for future cosplay projects. She also firmly believes that the gaming fraternity is much more accepting of women like her when compared to the normal society.
Favourite video game?
First gaming memory/system?
Mario and Duck Hunt on the NES and Road Rash on the PC.
Describe Gamergate in one line
Ah, that can of worms. It really shouldn’t have happened.
Do you think gaming is friendly/inclusive to women?
Not really. I don’t think video games were meant to be gender specific, only age specific. There’s nothing that I’d want as “women inclusive”. However, stereotyping characters needs to be addressed since games are pretty influential.
Have you had any bad gaming experiences/harassment due to your gender?
Not really, besides the occasional curiosity and surprised reactions. Perhaps, because I’m not involved with the community to that extent.
If there’s one thing you could fix about video games and/or the gaming culture what would it be?
I wish gamers would stop yelling, during and after games. All in all, I think the gaming world is evolving faster than societal norms, so I have high hopes for it.
Why are female video game protagonists in short supply?
I suppose games could have a gender bias, as the lead characters always require physical strength, which is a male attribute according to the society. Moreover, female characters have been more ornamental than useful. But I see that changing as well. Perhaps, games and comics can force society to accept women as equal to men by the means of stronger female characters (which don’t also have to be pretty or sexy).