Left-Handedness in Gaming – An Essay

Hello.

nintendo_ds_lite_handheld_gaming_system_2

That’s not how I hold my Stylus.

I’ve spent some time pondering left-handedness in gaming. I am left handed myself, and I never thought about it much in relation to gaming. However, recently after listening to a few discussions about diversity and representation in games of many different races, sexual orientations, genders, etc. I noticed that Left-Handedness is always something often over-looked in the equation.

There’s two problems to this: Left Handed Accessibility, and Left Handed Representation. Reasons are probably vast; the market of people who give a shit is probably pretty small. Left handed people don’t really have a culture to look to. We have a history, the short version of which is it was seen as (up until relatively recently) was viewed as something that should be corrected. Often in schools left handed kids were usually forced to write and force development with their right hand because this was the norm. And the norm is good and wholesome. At some point, the forcible changing of left handed kids ceased and now we have a world where it’s just “okay you’re left handed. Who cares?” We have woes; they are usually small, and nit picky. Like notebooks, with the sprials on the left side so that our hands dig into them as we write. Or with pencils and you end up with a hand bottom full of graphite. Scissors are a problem for some lefties, and can openers. Those right arm desks in school and when you sit down it’s just, “Oh. No support for my writing arm today!” The pens attached to debit card machines or bank chains are often on the wrong side and are too short. These are all things that are minor inconveniences in my life as a lefty.

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