A recently published Stanford study indicates that women who play games that depict over-sexualized female characters are more likely to objectify themselves and accept participation in rape myths.
In the study, researchers tested 86 female subjects aged 18 to 41 who had been asked to play a game as a character in either revealing or modest clothing. Some of the subjects in both categories also had their avatars modified to resemble them.
After playing the game, participants were asked to answer a series of questions on a five-point scale about their character's appearance and other opinion-driven questions. When it came to the responses for questions such as "In the majority of rapes, the victim is promiscuous or has a bad reputation," the study showed that those women who played as more sexualized versions of themselves were more likely to agree or strongly agree compared to those who played more conservative avatars.
According to the study, these findings fall in line with something called the Proteus effect, which says that individuals who engage in online role playing will act in ways similar to how they imagine their avatars would act.