I’m just about to embark on my first game-review of 2010 - Bayonetta.
I’ve been looking forward to this game for a crazy-long time, so I’m psyched immerse myself in its ridiculous, over-the-top awesomeness. Obviously I won’t go into too much detail just yet - but for those of you who don’t know, Bayonetta is a sassy-ass witch who can travel between dimensions, packs guns in her stilettos and wears a ‘living’ outfit made out of her own hair (that is still also somehow attached to her head).
Hello, awesome. And I mentioned the shoes…?
As I’ve been describing her rather ‘creative’ outfit to friends in my anticipation to play (or rather, lack of outfit as is sometimes the case), I’m often hit with the question of my thoughts on ‘the way women are portrayed in games’.
As a female in this industry I am of course aware that it’s somewhat male-dominated. I only have to look around the table at any work-related or even social get-together to see that I’m often the only ‘lady’ present. But in both capacities I’m never treated in any way differently - because as soon as I open my mouth and all the ‘geek’ starts gushing out, it’s clear that there’s no reason to.
This carries over into my views and opinions on game-design. They’re not gender-specific.
Remember the drama that erupted over the size of Lara Croft’s chest? She was deemed an “inaccurate portrayal of women” and “objectifying”. Yawn. It’s a video game. Games are presented to us as fantasy, stylised, even a form of art. It’s not always meant to be viewed a realistic representation - and personally, I’m just not offended. The more stylised - the better, imo - creative art and sensational character design pulls me in and makes me wonder what that character’s capabilities might be in combat. Sure, okay - maybe guys may also be wondering what her other ‘capabilities’ may involve - lol, but that hardly concerns me.
I enjoy playing strong, female characters. From what I’ve heard - Bayonetta kicks some serious ass - and looks ridiculously awesome doing it. I don’t feel like it’s ‘objectifying’ or ‘offensive’ - I just think it’s freaking cool. You know what would offend me? Weepy female game characters always portrayed as damsels. Bayonetta and her sexy, sometimes-naked, pistol-heeled pwnage?
Bring it on.
Besides. How is designing female characters to look like Bayonetta any different from designing male characters to look like this?
Where are the sexist claims over his totally epic biceps? Lol.