This is a very interesting, well-researched article concerning an often-debated topic that flares up whenever a new game is released that makes good use of sexy women, sometimes overtly to sell copies as GW2 appears to be doing.
Where do I stand? Firmly in a state of inner conflict. I can say that I’m indignant about male developers using their god-powers to get off in a juvenile way in sexualizing their game, which I believe may have happened a bit in Rift.
On the other hand, selling with sex bothers me not at all in the upcoming Lollipop Chainsaw game title, which is totally over the top. It didn’t bother me in the recent movie Sucker Punch, either, which is artistic, classy, and literary.
I usually prefer Lady Aribeth style armor with full crotch protection, but I don’t begrudge other preferences. Some female players may want to dress more sexy. They should have that opportunity. Our avatars express us.
I actually joined the minor forum protest when Neverwinter Nights 2 released and it became known that the underwear in the game were these suits that looked like full-body Star Trek uniforms more than medieval skivvies. In other words–too overtly prudish.
It comes down to how it’s handled. It’s intangible. In games like Elder Scrolls and Fallout, I don’t even look twice when I strip the armor off of a she-bandit (or handsome man-bandit) that just tried to empty my brains with a spiked mace. It’s dirty realistic. I still think women game designers should be in charge of female character design, including outfits and hairstyles.
Catgirls are renowned as an idiom that sexualizes girls, but there are all kinds of catgirls in addition to the standard vapid, panty-clad drool kittens. Adventurers like the one depicted above, for example, and superheroines like Cat Girl Nuku Nuku. Sexy can happen (and be fun) without being crass.
Other sexy news today came in the form of Massively posting a video on same gender romances that Conan O’Brien created. It’s hilarious, and it’s linked below on Youtube.
It’s great that this issue is staying on the surface in the media, keeping a little bit of pressure on Bioware to bring that thang. For better or for worse, we also have last week’s public (and quite premature) Christian outrage to thank for that.