Saturday, April 23, 2011

Nobody Fights Sea Monsters in Daisy Dukes

You know what I love about BioWare, other than Anders? I love that female characters are never saving the world in daisy dukes or chainmail bikinis*. Seriously.

That's the female version of chainmail from Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion. That is my favorite game of all time. I still play it. It's six years old and still holds up, in my opinion. However, for some strange reason, while men are covered head to toe by chainmail, women can't even wear a bra with it (it would show through the slit). Why? C'mon, you know why.

See that? That's BioWare's Dragon Age II. Every other character is female, but you can't tell the difference just on armor, can you? The women's chests, stomachs, hips, thighs and butts are as covered as the men's. You know, so the armor will do what armor is intended to do.

Look at that. That's Bonnie Lass. She commands a ship and saves the day. She's also at risk for a labia popping out if she moves too fast. And if you've ever worn thigh high pantyhose (hey, I used to be interesting), you know you aren't kicking sea monster ass in them. You're too occupied pulling them up every time you move. And don't get me started on garter belts. (I used to very, very interesting.) And why, exactly, is she so opposed to 3" of her thighs being covered? Is that small strip of flesh constantly hot, so hot she cannot bear the touch of fabric? No, it's sexy. Because being a hero just isn't enough, you also have to titillate every teenage boy in a 500 mile radius.

Gah! Hey, look, it's not just teenage boys that play video games and read comics. Women do, too, increasing numbers. Please, please, please stop treating female characters as existing only to titillate teenage boys. Start treating them like people who select appropriate clothing for the task at hand, and chainmail bikinis and daisy dukes are not appropriate for saving the world.

*Yes, yes, Isabella. Isabella is charmingly slutty. (Actually, I despise Isabella, but not because she enjoys her sexuality. Because she ran off and left me and then I had to do a huge fight with 3 people instead of 4 and it took me 17 tries to get through it. I hate her!) It's just who she is, and she's not the player controlled character or the hero.


  1. it drove me INSANE on WoW - a piece of equipment that appeared on a MALE charater as armor was lingere [however the fuck it's spelled] on a female character.
    pants turned into shorts or thigh-highs. boots developed heels. tops went from chest plates to tank tops, bikini tops, or boustier/corset tops.

    i'd say to people "Stab me in the stomach! it's totally naked and unprotected!" and people would respond with "WTF are you talking about?!"

    so... yeah.

  2. Rule 314: Fanservice does not equal Character Design.

    Characters can be extremely good despite also being the designated hawt-chick, but they're never good because of it. And the only explaination for it I've heard (courtesy of Yoko, from Gurren Lagaan, who fights giant robots in short-shorts and a bikini top) was "it doesn't restrict my movement", a hand-wave at best. (in Yoko's defense, she's one of the good-despite-it characters, and the main male characters seem to be allergic to shirts as well, so it's not just her).

    For my part, I don't do fanservice. Characters I design, male or female, tend to rely on utilitarian armour or loose shirts and pants. Oh, and sensible shoes.

    The closest I've got to a stripperific character (damn you TVTropes!) is probably a girl who wears a sleeveless shirt and tight jeans. But she's outgoing and cheerful and generally uninhibited (I designed her as a contrast to my other two main characters, a cynical jerk and a shy mute), and she's incapable of using armour for unrelated reasons, so 'stuffy' clothes wouldn't suit her.


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