Oh, there are definitely plenty of examples of sexism and negative representations of gender roles across all media. Unfortunately, I think that video games get a free pass much of the time, perhaps because people don't expect much better from them. Even among the portion of the population that takes a critical interest in the content of video games, I feel that there's a certain ambivalence toward poor characterization, almost as though we've been led to believe that demanding characters who embody, among other things, realistic representations of gender roles is too much to ask from a game. I think that ties in to Kim's point about how there's a terrible lack of originality in many games these days ("Girls have always gone into battle in dresses and gotten captured four times before the finale, so why not in our game?"), as well as your point about how the characters are seen as "something some artist whipped up in Paint". Everyone can agree that video game characters aren't real, and the fact that they're computer-generated images separates them from verisimilitude by another degree. I disagree, though, as I'm sure most of the gaming community would, that that means that they can't be constructed as and behave like real people, and used to tell resonant stories. It's harder to do so that it would be with live actors and actresses, of course, but a lot of games do manage it, and I suppose that I'd like to see a lot of other games at least put an honest effort toward doing so.
Thanks for the heads-up about your topic- I'll be sure to look it up. And yes, speaking as a male gamer myself, I completely agree that this sort of thing is equally insulting to gamers of both genders.