Females in fantasy stories really do bring a whole new meaning to the term "breast plate."
The heroic knight readies for battle in his full plate armor, as his less-lawful thief colleague dons thick studded leather from head to toe. Even the cleric is wearing a complete suit of scale mail - but their female archer companion? Why, she's in little more than a bikini. Obviously, it's to preserve her mobility, of course!
Armor (or the lack thereof) on female characters in fantasy settings is as much of a cliche as anything else is these days. Naturally, this applies to videogames as well - when female characters can don a piece of full plate armor in WoW and have it turn into a metal bra, it feels a bit ridiculous.
College Humor has tackled the subject in its latest silly short, with a blacksmith and two male warriors trying to convince their female companion that her new chainmail bikini will actually offer more protection than eye candy. After all, enemies' attention will be drawn to the shiny parts, won't they? Of course they will.
Still, I'm not sure that female characters really need to show so much skin. I mean, Samus Aran is kind of a nerd sex symbol, and she wears a full suit of power armor! Usually, anyways.