EA learned a little something this year, and it only took 14-year-old Lexi Peters from Buffalo, NY to teach it to them. See, she likes to play EA Sports' NHL games with her brother, but got frustrated that he could create a character with his name and likeness, but she couldn't do the same. In the character creation mode, there's no option to change the sex of the player. Because while there's obviously female space marines or medieval warriors, everybody knows that girls don't play hockey, right? (that's sarcasm, btw!)
Her protest letters reached EA Sports COO Peter Moore, who passed them along to David Littman, the executive producer of the hockey series. Realizing there was an entire section of the gaming audience that was unrepresented, they arranged for female character creation for the first time in NHL '12. (Technically, a girl appeared in NHL '09, but while charity auction winner Sabrina Ladha's name and image is there, the character on the ice is still a man.)
And to go the extra mile, the game designers asked Lexi to send in photos of herself so they could program her as the default female character in NHL '12. So now she doesn't even have to adjust tons of settings to tweak a character to look like herself while her brother does! Score one for her!
I figure that in a male-dominated industry like videogames making a series based on a male-dominated sport, it wasn't likely that they would have thought to include the option to create a female character on their own. So credit to EA for realizing that they could get some good will (as well as good PR and maybe extra sales, naturally) out of listening to Lexi's protests.
How a 14-Year-Old Girl Made NHL Video Game History [Yahoo!Sports]