While around 47% of gamers are women, the overwhelming majority of games feature a male protagonist and almost all male side characters. In most games the few female side characters are nothing more than an empty headed barbie with gigantic breasts and no personality of any kind. In fact only 4% of all video games have a female lead.
One company GUST has created a game series that's geared towards girls and women with almost all of their games having a female lead and almost all female side characters, 4 games in the series have a male lead. While the few male characters aren't central to any story, they are always shown as decent, hardworking, respectful of women, just downright good people. There's always the male blacksmith/weapon shop salesman who is a large friendly father figure, he teaches the lead how to make weapons and armor and is always there to help her during the game. Then there's the best friend male, always sweet and fun and willing to help the lead in any way. The male guard or hunter, also there to help and be a friend, etc etc. The men are always portrayed well, not insulted or treated badly.
However, the fact that there are so few men in an upfront role in the games seems to have ticked of that sexism part of many male gamers and reviewers, and while most of them are very upfront about it, some don't even seem to realize they're doing it.
The newest game in the series has a female AND a male lead, and yes, it's brought out some not so lovely sexist comments. The comments that bug me the most are by a reviewer who actually gave the game a 5 out of 5 and the majority of his review was fully positive and loving of the game. These lines peppered through the review though made my eye twitch...
"It's also the first time in quite a while that GUST has produced a game with a male lead character. Ayesha, and the Arland trilogy that came before it; Atelier Rorona, Totori, and Meruru, were all very much focused on female heroes (and non-player characters,for that matter. Important men were few and far apart in those games).
GUST's male characters have generally been quite flat and functional when they've had anything at all to do, more an opportunity for the female characters to bounce jokes off than digital people with motivations of their own."
When i pointed out to him that if he wants male leads and tons of super interesting male side characters he can play any of the 96% of games geared towards men he actually insisted that he had no problem with the games "constant" female leads. Which also gave me a twitch. So i pointed out that while he may not think he has a problem with it, it's coming across very much as though he does. Otherwise he would have just said "it has a female and male lead" and been done with it. He wouldn't have brought it up in great detail, multiple times.