The Half-Naked Elf Problem

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The Half-Naked Elf Problem

Yes, this is an old issue. Humor me. I know how to fix this.

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Actually, the system you've proposed was recently put in place by WoW as "Transmogrification", you can now change the appearance of a piece of gear into something else, with specific restrictions:

1. You have to have the gear you want to Mog your current gear into.
2. Armour has to be the same armour class and weapons have to be the same weapon type, the latter applies to both not being allowed to Mog 2-handers into 1-handers and visa versa as well as not being able to Mog, say, Axes into maces (Though that last part might be changed come mists).
3. You can't Mog weapons to look like legendary weapons and legendary weapons to look like something else.

Eh, I've never seen a problem with scantily clad pixels. Really, everyone should be running around naked, imo. The sheer physics would be amazing.

LOTRO has the least-revealing outfits of any game I've played, MMO or otherwise, for female characters. There are some outfits that are slightly more revealing than others (low-cut dresses), but you probably wouldn't be wearing a ball gown into combat.

It's sad that this is still an issue. Gaming really needs to grow out of it. I hate all these BDSM looking female characters in games. It doesn't do anything to dispel the gamer stereotype of us all being perverted basement dwelling virgins.

But I don't really like the system of wearing one set of clothing but appearing to wear another. It just seems to make itself redundant to me. Why bother making different sets of armour with different stats if you can just ignore the stats and wear whatever you want? Maybe it would be best if there was some sort of system where what you wear isn't connected to your armour stats at all. Maybe you could make it so all armour sets have no effect on their own, but all have enchantment slots in which you can place magic gems or something which give the item the stats you want. That sounds like a workable system which makes sense to me.

EDIT: This idea is going somewhere... It could also be organised in a way that there are different classes of armour and only certain types of gems can be put in to certain classes of armour. That way you don't get people walking around in magic robes that give the same armour ratings as the biggest beefiest platemail, etc. That could be seen as a bit too restrictive, but I think it just makes sense and wouldn't unbalance the game. And so that it makes sense to unlock "better" armour as you level up, higher level armour could have more slots for these gems than lower level stuff. But there would also be an option to add extra slots to lower level armour if you wanted to keep with that style. The ability to unlock these extra slots correlate with the unlocking of higher level armour.

If that system was in a game I think it would be totally awesome. If there's anyone here planning on making an MMO/RPG any time soon then feel free to steal my ideas, because I know I won't be using them.

Marohen:
Actually, the system you've proposed was recently put in place by WoW as "Transmogrification", you can now change the appearance of a piece of gear into something else, with specific restrictions:

1. You have to have the gear you want to Mog your current gear into.
2. Armour has to be the same armour class and weapons have to be the same weapon type, the latter applies to both not being allowed to Mog 2-handers into 1-handers and visa versa as well as not being able to Mog, say, Axes into maces (Though that last part might be changed come mists).
3. You can't Mog weapons to look like legendary weapons and legendary weapons to look like something else.

Yep. After three expansions and numerous patches, WoW added the ability to make your gear look like other gear. Needless to say, you've got a fair amount of what is colloquially dubbed 'slut armour' but - and perhaps this is because I'm on an RP server - the vast majority of both male and female characters seem to have 'reasonable' gear sets.

Frankly, there seems to be little reason why such a feature isn't standard and staple for all games from now on.

And it's a money sink in WoW too. Not a huge money sink (about 10-30g), but a sink nonetheless.

The method Shamus just mentioned has been in place for DC Universe Online for a REALLY long time (may have been in at launch, I dunno didn't play at launch), you pick up new items that come with looks attached, you put it on and it changes your look, HOWEVER if you want you can go into the appearance options and lock an item.

so say I have some awesome red and blue gloves that I don't want to loose but the rusty gauntlets have better stats, I lock the appearance of the red and blue gloves, then go to inventory swap out the gloves for the gauntlets and vwalla I get a +3 to strength AND my hero still looks cool.

Shamus Young:
Also, buy his novel, which has a magic-casting woman...

...Oh? Tell me more abo-...

Shamus Young:
...in practical clothes.

...well there goes my interest.

On a serious note, yes, this is a known issue, and quite easy to fix. One of the many "easy to fix" issues in gaming today that seem to baffle developers. Sadly so many developers seem either completely oblivious to the obvious, or too focused on the code to notice the actual game they're doing.

I mean, really, I can't think of any reason why developers wouldn't want a "double inventory" system (effective armor vs. visual), like in F2P title RustyHearts. It solves everyone's problem and gives you, literally, two times the amount of shit you can sell players. Are these people allergic to success and money or something?

Re: the last point, I'm not convinced that including practical armor for female characters in a game that more prominently features jiggle physics, chainmail bikinis, etc. does much to get rid of the "hey, women! This game isn't for you!" impression that this sort of game gives off. Did having a Spartan in full power armor do anything to make that one Dead or Alive game come off as less targeted at an exclusively male audience?

Well Maybe I just don't want to play an MMO with the sort of prudes who don't dream of running around casting spells, slaying Dragons and kicking ass while wearing metal underwear? Ever think of that Shamus?

OT: Why do we really need a double inventory system. Surely a practical full-body armor suit can be made to look sexy? And as for existing preferences, why not just have the same design, but with stronger materials? Or maybe they could let you wear that wizard's robe Over that suit of armor. Multi-level > double inventory system. I also feel that the later system was kinda hypocritical.

MorganL4:
The method Shamus just mentioned has been in place for DC Universe Online for a REALLY long time (may have been in at launch, I dunno didn't play at launch), you pick up new items that come with looks attached, you put it on and it changes your look, HOWEVER if you want you can go into the appearance options and lock an item.

TotalBiscuit was playing beta and seemed to have that mechanic in his videos, so I assume it was in at launch too.

Your first youtube is unavailable.

No mention of the Loli race? Yea they need to put some pants on those little girls before you worry about chainmail bikinis

Amnestic:

Marohen:
Actually, the system you've proposed was recently put in place by WoW as "Transmogrification", you can now change the appearance of a piece of gear into something else, with specific restrictions:

1. You have to have the gear you want to Mog your current gear into.
2. Armour has to be the same armour class and weapons have to be the same weapon type, the latter applies to both not being allowed to Mog 2-handers into 1-handers and visa versa as well as not being able to Mog, say, Axes into maces (Though that last part might be changed come mists).
3. You can't Mog weapons to look like legendary weapons and legendary weapons to look like something else.

Yep. After three expansions and numerous patches, WoW added the ability to make your gear look like other gear. Needless to say, you've got a fair amount of what is colloquially dubbed 'slut armour' but - and perhaps this is because I'm on an RP server - the vast majority of both male and female characters seem to have 'reasonable' gear sets.

Frankly, there seems to be little reason why such a feature isn't standard and staple for all games from now on.

And it's a money sink in WoW too. Not a huge money sink (about 10-30g), but a sink nonetheless.

Void storage is probably a more quantifiable money sink than Transmog itself (For those who don't know, void storage was added along with Transmog as a sort of bulk gear storage that's larger but more costly than a regular bank), but I agree that it's important to highlight the necessity of a a gold sink given WoW's rather high gold inflation it's seen over the years.

And yes, scantily clad gear is still abound, but at least players have the choice to change it into something else, which seems much more fair.

It's probably also worth nothing that, since you have to still obtain the gear you want your character to appear to be wearing, this mechanic helps reinvigorating interest in old and irrelevant raids and dungeons, since now gear has the timeless value of aesthetics instead of just stats.

I think it'd be pretty cool to be able to create your own aesthetic outfits without being bound by stats or gender models. You could get some great creativity with a robust system.

Personally, I don't see why people are pointing out the horrible sexism in Tera. Yeah, it's stupid and shameless, but no more so than dozens of other games around it. The trend needs to die, but why punish one game for conforming to it more than any other?

It's completely immersion breaking for me to be wearing two different things at the same time! This makes no sense! You're ruining the game!

First of all, if "immersion" is a priority for you, then maybe MMO's shouldn't be your go-to genre.

And if I may...

Second, everyone who uses "it's immersion breaking" as an excuse for why something is bad needs to shut up anyway because they're probably stupid. "Immersion" and "immersion breaking" have been tossed around so much lately that they mean absolutely nothing at this point. Everything is "immersion breaking" anymore. Don't like something, but can't really explain why? Just say that it's immersion breaking and call it a day. It's like the "tastes like chicken" of games... Or something. Whatever. Point is, people have devalued that as a criticism to the point where it's useless. Like in this example here, how is wearing two different things immersion breaking? Unless it's drawing both items on your character at the same time, so that you see bits of one piece of armor poking out of another as you play, it's no more immersion breaking than the menu you have to open to select what armor to wear in the first place. Thus, claiming that it would be immersion breaking is a completely useless and invalid complaint.

So what I'm trying to say to everyone out there is that you should come up with some actual criticisms for something instead of just saying "immersion breaking" and thinking it's actually a valid point. Guess what: it isn't.

Prof. Monkeypox:

Personally, I don't see why people are pointing out the horrible sexism in Tera. Yeah, it's stupid and shameless, but no more so than dozens of other games around it. The trend needs to die, but why punish one game for conforming to it more than any other?

My guess? Because it's the new kid on the block, thus fresh in the minds of readers, thus a useful segue example into the general topic (scantily clad female avatars) of the article. How many other recent (large) game releases have that sort of stuff going on? Is it really dozens?

If it really is dozens, then my guess is "Because that was the game Shamus tried at PAX East which left enough of an impression to warrant an article". ;p

This problem is a bit more apparent in asian MMOs. Guess what TERA is.

Frankly, you have to consider cultural differences here - it's a japanese game (iirc, could be korean, point's the same) and made for their own specific audiences, and just because they release it in the west they're not gonna start changing all their armor sets.

As for western MMOs... well, I can't remember any recent western MMO whose women are as scantily clad as TERA's.

As Shamus mentioned (and put great emphasis on during his Shamus PLays) LOTRO has an awesome cosmetic outfit system. Thing's been around for ages, I think they put it in roughly 6 months/a year after the game came out. You can even go so far as to dye it a myriad of colors. You can even cosmetically equip heavy armor on someone who's not proficient with it if you have wardrobe slots (or something like that, haven't bought any) In PVP cosmetic options are shut off so there's nothing messed up there.

Some people have mentioned a specific MMO here and there, but the fact is, pretty much every modern MMO already has this feature in some sense. Plenty of them have the "two ragdoll" approach that Shamus described, WoW as mentioned has a very similar system where you implant the looks of one item onto the stats of another, and SWToR has had a slightly different approach with gear specifically designed to be cosmetic that you can implant the stats onto.

An easy route would be to replace armour bonuses with some sort of "slotting" system where you get to place items into clothing. Then your clothes aren't really the armour anyway. And if this is too immersion-breaking in a world of thongs of +5 awesome and dragons of dragony goodness, I don't know what to tell you.

I'd honestly like to be able to dress as silly or sensibly as I want.

I support this, in all my MMOs.
*Sagenod*

Prof. Monkeypox:
Personally, I don't see why people are pointing out the horrible sexism in Tera. Yeah, it's stupid and shameless, but no more so than dozens of other games around it. The trend needs to die, but why punish one game for conforming to it more than any other?

Imagine that instead of sexism it was racism. If the general trend was including some racist stereotypes everywhere it would kind of become background noise until someone came around and just did it too brazenly or got just enough spotlight to get everyone talking about it at once. When that happens the detractors of the trend get a focal point, something to point at and say "this is exactly what the problem looks like". So then they're a group of people disagreeing at once rather than individually Tera is just that. It's become "the pretty MMO where the women dress like strippers", and it gets to be the poster-boy of the week for the problem, even if there are others just as bad or worse.

I think I just talked about this last week in my cartoon:
http://www.serialmmogamy.com

I think I would be more comfortable with the sexual objectification of an MMO avatar if it was an equal-opportunity objectification. If YOU can have the choice of playing a half-naked FEMALE avatar, why am I not given the opportunity to play a half-naked MALE avatar?

Leslee

Fact: if you like how the women in Tera are dressed then you are a juvenile delinquent.
Fact: it breaks immersion and all sense of taste to be running into battle wearing protective gear that amounts to little more than a thong and bikini.
I think the author's idea is reasonable, but if I were a developer I would elect to keep senseless filth out of the game altogether. Gaming needs to grow up past the females as sex objects thing and juveniles who get off on this stuff need to get touched by someone of their preferred sex.

It's something I like about The Old Republic. Nothing is really that revealing or sexy. Quite a few things are utterly ridiculous looking, yes, but they aren't revealing.

Well, except the heavy robe Jedi Guardians get at the end of Tython. On men it's a shirt, on women it's a bra.

And the dancer outfit, though that's only available as a "social" item. Meaning you have to have a certain amount of social points (you get 'em by completing quests with people) if you want to wear them.

But that's the only one I've seen.

lesterley:
I think I just talked about this last week in my cartoon:
http://www.serialmmogamy.com

I think I would be more comfortable with the sexual objectification of an MMO avatar if it was an equal-opportunity objectification. If YOU can have the choice of playing a half-naked FEMALE avatar, why am I not given the opportunity to play a half-naked MALE avatar?

Leslee

I second this. How come the women get to run around with no pants on, but I can't? It's not fair dammit! I was so glad when I saw the dancer outfit in TOR. Then my heart sank when it said female only.

Just not fair.

poiumty:

As for western MMOs... well, I can't remember any recent western MMO whose women are as scantily clad as TERA's.

Other than the Leia bikini in TOR, you mean?

You know, when I first started reading the article, I wasnt going to finish it, and just write it off as another thing about chainmail bikinis. Good thing I did keep reading. I wish games like Skyrim let me do this (I love the Thalmor's hooded-robes, but love the stats my Nightshade(?) armor from the theaves guild gives me.)

Actually i have heard of Tera, the biggest thing i heard about it is that is basically has a "Scantily Clad Loli" class. No seriosuly look;

imageimage

Yeahhhh... im not comfortable with whoever designed those. Stay the fuck away from me

I like how Jade Empire did it.

Yes women were scantily clad but so were lots of the guys too.
Hell Tiger Shen had no shirt.

If the ladies have to dress like that the guys to do.
Which is why I lol'ed at Origins lady armor.
Uhm the point of armor is to cover your chest, not say SHOOT ME RIGHT HERE

MorganL4:
The method Shamus just mentioned has been in place for DC Universe Online for a REALLY long time (may have been in at launch, I dunno didn't play at launch), you pick up new items that come with looks attached, you put it on and it changes your look, HOWEVER if you want you can go into the appearance options and lock an item.

This was in at launch and it was one of the cooler features of the game. You had a decent selection when you start the game of different clothing items, plus your char's appearance, dye them however you want, and then once you're in game you never have to change appearance if you don't want. The fact you could actually keep the appearances even after you sold the armor and select them from a dropdown bar was nice too, so you could gather a huge collection of different costume pieces to mix and match as you wanted, and they'd always stay the same colors as the one you chose in chargen so stuff would always match. But then you'd still have the pieces you were actually wearing providing the stats, whether they were visible or not. It's the way really any clothing system should work I think since it lets you build a 'closet' of clothing choices, whereas Shamus's system would still require you to keep the low level clothing, which means taking up inventory space if you want multiple options.

Scrumpmonkey:

Yeahhhh... im not comfortable with whoever designed those. Stay the fuck away from me

+1

Wow. What the fuck. Not okay, developers.

OT: This is my problem with the idea in the article. In the unlikely event that I were to play a MMO, I would prefer it not feature pedophilia-related shit, at all, ever. Giving players the option to pick between pedo and non-pedo gear would not make it okay.

What about a system such as the one in Morrowind? There clothes and armour were different things and could be worn layered over each other. So if you have armour equipped it shows on your character but you could wear cosmetic clothing over (cloak, mantle, cape, robe) or under (pants, shirt, gloves) it.

Alternatively, why not have the ability to have equipment smithed or tailored with custom trim and decoration?

Kahunaburger:

Scrumpmonkey:

Yeahhhh... im not comfortable with whoever designed those. Stay the fuck away from me

+1

Wow. What the fuck. Not okay, developers.

OT: This is my problem with the idea in the article. In the unlikely event that I were to play a MMO, I would prefer it not feature pedophilia-related shit, at all, ever. Giving players the option to pick between pedo and non-pedo gear would not make it okay.

Thats not the worst of it. You know the miniskirt problem mentioned in the article? Yeah. Im not going to post it here but suffice to say those short dresses make climbing... problematic.

Shamus makes some great points in his article and i don't want to de-rail it but the boob physics probelm kind of gets overshadowed a little here...

Rift has the 1 outfit for stats, 1 for appearance thing too.

But really how ever many people there are that don't like objectifying women, they will always be vastly outnumbered by those who do.

Scrumpmonkey:
Actually i have heard of Tera, the biggest thing i heard about it is that is basically has a "Scantily Clad Loli" class. No seriosuly look;

imageimage

Yeahhhh... im not comfortable with whoever designed those. Stay the fuck away from me

It's an adult female of that fuzzy race, only with smaller boobies compared to the gazungas on the other characters. I think people are being too pedo-paranoid and games are a bit silly to get weirded out over considering most gamers have beaten and burned innocent people to death in GTA or Saints Row. But that's just me, I've never come across anything in a video game that "shocked" or weirded me out.

If anything it's more of an issue of sexual dimorphism.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/BizarreSexualDimorphism

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