Discussion

{DISCUSSION} Female Characters in RPG

Why are female characters overly sexualized in video games?

After a solid decade of not gaming (literally, I haven’t gamed since the PS2 mini came out. πŸ˜‰ ), I got back into it over the last few months because I found out one of my fellow bloggers is a gamer. And it’s been such a wonderful addition to my weekly schedule. It’s the perfect way to de-stress before another crazy week of grad school. However, as my friend and I were looking for new games to play (on my even older than a decade desktop that only has a 2.3GHZ processor. I know. Ouch.) we stumbled upon something in EVERY game we attempted to play:

Over Sexualization… of Female Characters

Ah. And I can already hear the gamers saying: “Well, what did you expect?”

Oh. I don’t know. Maybe a little decorum. A little common decency.

A little FUCKING RESPECT FOR HUMANITY!!!!
🀬🀬 🀬 🀬

*exhale* I’m cool. I’m cool.

I am just appalled that, in this day and age, where women can step into any role a man can, where females are becoming main protagonists and kicking ass, where women are finally getting a voice after being silenced for generations, that we STILL have chauvinistic pigs creating overly sexualized (and almost ALWAYS completely unrealistically proportional) female characters.

I’m sorry, but those boobs are gonna give that tiny lady a TON of back problems. Let me tell you! She ain’t gonna be standing up straight, swingin’ an axe for long. That’s for sure. And there is no WAY she is running without a sports bra. Do you know how PAINFUL that is?! Ugh. Men.

To add to this, the female characters so scantily clad that they would die in seconds. What kind of society would EVER create armor that doesn’t protect the abdominal area? Uh… every humanoid species carries organs in that area. You want to know a really fast way to die? BEING STABBED IN AN ORGAN! So not only are these women busty as all get out (literally. They constantly look like they are getting out of their clothes. haha. sorry. couldn’t help myself), but they also are not going to last one second in a fight because their armor is non-existent.

To really just throw icing at that bullshit cake of misogyny, when comparing female characters to male characters, it’s like you’re not even playing the same game! The male characters are tall, buff as a freakin’ body builder, and usually have so much armor on them that you don’t even need to customize the physical features.

THE HELL?!

Now that I’ve stated my point, I would like to discuss some excuses/completely false reasons/straight up liesΒ counter arguments for this.

1. Women don’t game.

πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

2. Game artists are mostly men.

This may be true (I don’t have stats), but just because there’s a ton of testosterone in a single building, doesn’t give men the right to sexualize women.

3. The artists don’t know any better.

Look at my face —>Β πŸ˜‘

4. It’s just fiction. Who cares?

Ah yes. The age-old “it’s fiction. It’s not real” argument that literally NEVER. HELPED. SOCIETY. EVER! This is actually saying that as long as you’re not doing it in reality, you can sexualize whomever you want (this would then suggest that you could also be racist and homophobic in fiction and not in reality and it would be okay. Pretty sure we all should know it’s not. Kay, thanks.)

5. Sex sells.

You know, I think I heard the other day that there is actually an industry for that. What was it called again? … oh yeah! Porn.

Now stay away from my video games because I need to kick some orc-butt and it’s really hard to do in booty-shorts! (god.Β The chaffing. 😦)


And check out my discussion from last week:
“Haha! Just kidding. I didn’t have one. πŸ˜‚”

20 thoughts on “{DISCUSSION} Female Characters in RPG”

  1. The problem here is I think that for once, the media isn’t driving that changes in the world. Women and social media is. Everything from films, tv, games and all are still using women in the same cliche’d way. One of the things that still gets me is in a film or tv series you always have a sexy woman, always clinging to the hero good guy and she’s always lined up to be his ‘love’ (broad term more like sex) interest.

    When do you ever get the role reversal? When does a film not have to have love involved in it? This is why you still see female characters like this in games.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with you, Simon, that entertainment isn’t driving this change because sex does sell. That is why it continues to exist. Unfortunately, it’s also the reason why women are still degraded, sexualized, and abused more often than men because too much of society still sees them as objects as that is how media shows them to treat them.

      I think video games could have a huge impact on this. I think they could truly make a difference, but people care more about sales than treating people like human beings. It’s a shame. It will take a LONG time to change because many people are fine with the way things are, but I hope we can at least get a nudge in the right direction by talking about and acknowledging how wrong it is to oversexualize women in games, movies, and other aspects.

      Like

  2. Hello Melanie!
    This is such an interesting discussion topic and I’m glad that you chose it! I don’t game much (because I am terrible at it haha) but I can’t help but be miffed at the over-sexualization of females in video games as well. I think it is because, while there are female gamers out there, more gamers are heterosexual males who like that sort of thing, and well… sex does sell :’)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi, Sophie! Thank you for commenting and I’m glad you like the topic this week. πŸ™‚

      I think you are absolutely correct. Most gamers and most game designers are still men right now and even as women are getting a foot in the door in both gaming and designing, this is one industry that is LEAGUES behind others in gender equality. And you are right. Sex does sell, which is a shame because gaming isn’t the only place that women are still sexualized on a regular basis.

      And I guess I’m not looking for complete removal of sexualization of women in games. I mean, I like to play a sexy character once in a while (I’d love to be a sexy character, too. :p ) But I think these games need to offer less revealing clothing attire or even more proportional characters. Not every woman wants to play a character with boobs bigger than her head or a skirt that shows her butt. It’s just annoying because it’s not the point of the game.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. There is this game called Warframe, developed by a small studio, Digital Extremes. I believe their design practices are way more reasonable.

    Check them out, some developers out there are trying to make something different!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for commenting and telling us about Warframe! I’m excited to hear that there is some change going on and I look forward to checking out this game. I’d love to support more games like this. πŸ™‚

      Like

  4. Hahahahahaha omg I’m DYING πŸ˜‚ I totally agree with you though and constantly wonder the exact same fucking thing! I mean, it’s been DECADES people! Come on! INSERT BIGGEST EYE ROLL EVER I seriously have no idea what this nonsense is about (I mean I have a STRONG feeling it started because gamers were originally (mostly) all dudes without a prayer of speaking a full sentence to a girl but there’s plenty of women in the industry nowadays) but I’d very much like to game without feeling awkward that my player is half naked with giant bouncing boobs while I kill monsters beside my brother lol
    Although at least the characters in Star Wars Battlefront aren’t so ridiculous…so there’s at least one game that’s alright. LOL

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahahahaha! I’m glad you liked my post, Angela! πŸ˜€

      And exactly! So many women feel uncomfortable playing games because they’re being oversexualized when it’s not even the point of the game. You don’t see female MMA fighters wearing a thin strip of fabric across their boobs. NO! They wear compact sports bras. They might wear short shorts, but that’s for moving around and they usually don’t have their ass hanging out. My god!

      I can’t even imagine the number of younger female gamers who aren’t allowed to get into a game because their parents see how scantily clad the characters look. It’s literally preventing people from getting to play a game that should have NOTHING to do with what a character looks like. It’s just frustrating!

      Yes, there are a few games out there, but not nearly enough. And the popular ones seem to be the worst. 😦

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It really is, Rae! This has become the standard to the point that people don’t even realize how wrong and inappropriate it is. But it’s also the same thing we still face in reality where too many men don’t even realize what is inappropriate behavior towards women. Media is supporting it and making it normal, and it’s even more normal for geeky guys because they play it off as being awkward (the Big Bang Theory TV show is a PERFECT example of where this stuff gets away with being funny instead of bad.) I think it’s okay to have some sexualized characters, but there needs to be some boundaries or options for characters that aren’t sexualized. And there should be male sexualized characters as well. Level the playing field so to speak.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. ROFLMAO!! Gah, this post! So on point! I am glad you wrote this. There is no excuse. None, what so ever. Sure, straight men like to look at the female body, but straight women enjoy looking at the male body too . Do you see us publicly drooling and causing a scene?? Do you see a bunch of scantily clad men in things that women create?? No! Because we apparently know how to show more decency and respect to the opposite sex, whereas the majority of game creators forget that we need to be respected and that women game too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. THANK YOU! God! It’s amazing how many people still believe it’s acceptable for a man to ogle a woman, but it’s not okay for a woman to ogle a man. That’s just total BS. It comes back to the whole, a man needs to be sexually experienced, but a woman needs to be a virgin. Uh… pretty sure that would mean all men are gay, but okay. Sure. Society is changing and the media needs to change with it. It’s called having respect for people, not just men. Simple as that.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. That type of response is the exact reason we are in this situation. You are justifying the sexualization and objectification of half the people on this planet because men apparently have such raging hormones they can’t even be see those people as people. That is what’s wrong with current society and what continues to support men behaving inappropriately towards women in real life. Women are people. Not objects to be ogled at and, for your information, plenty of women play games too. Just because they are a lower percentage in the gaming world does not mean they can be ignored.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’ve taken me completely wrong. What you’ve just said it not what I was meaning by my comment. I play games, I love games. I have had my fair share of sexist bigot twat situation with guys who think just because they have a dick they can tell a woman to get into the kitchen. I have never and will never support people who think they are entitled by their gender, men or women. Please don’t put words into my mouth. I say what I mean always.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I am happy to hear you agree with our sentiment, Laura, and I apologize for misunderstanding. Despite your intentions, I – and many of my readers – took your comment to be misogynistic. We understood it as you justifying the over sexualization of female characters. Even as we understand why it happens, we don’t agree with it and we hope to make change by having this (and many more) discussion(s), which I hope you will participate in.

          Liked by 1 person

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