Originally I wrote this article 4 years ago, when Resident Evil Revelations promotional material was floating around the internet. In particular, promos about the antagonist Rachel Foley. So, basically, all you can say [spoiler free] about her is she’s a blonde who needs a haircut or a scrunchy, wearing a wetsuit that’s unzipped, ostenstibly to air out her breasts, which are actually her lungs, otherwise she can’t breathe. Need I say it? I’m not disgusted, per se, but I’m unimpressed and disappointed.

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She seems to have been inspired by the character of the same name from Ninja Gaiden  – Rachel, the giant boobed blonde fiend hunter who served little purpose but to be eye candy and showcase Team Ninja’s obsession with breast physics. At least in the original game before she got her own levels in the Sigma re-release, and became a regular in Dead or Alive.

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And Rachel is not the only over-sexualized female character in the game, either. Capcom released the “Lady Hunk” DLC – which makes no sense and it’s questionable why the hell they even did it except for the sole purpose of appealing to the male audience. The male audience which, I can only assume their market research has concluded, is sexually repressed and only needs to see some flesh in order to buy anything, and everything.

Why can’t additional costumes and characters be something that looks cool and makes some sense at the same time? She literally  doesn’t have on pants. And it doesn’t even make sense because she’s just Hunk, but with a smaller form and legs as the only feature to make her look female. What is even erotic about that?

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Are eastern developers doing this because they’re mostly guys, or, is this shit all business focused in order to sell to male audiences? Even that doesn’t really add up, because at least according to a study, even guys going through puberty don’t find it appealing. So, the fuck, Japan/Korea/China? I feel like they are trying to make things as easy as possible for Rule34.

It’s not just certain developers with certain games. It’s literally all female characters – Western or Eastern alike. Okay, not literally all – more like 97%. See here the evolution of changing character design and, more importantly, increasing sexualization of two of Soul Calbur’s women:

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Why even have clothes at this point?

Even Nintendo is guilty of the sex shenanigans with Samus. Remember back in the day, when it was a huge “shock” that underneath the suit was a woman? And how little it mattered because the point was you were beating alien asses?

I know what we can do. Let’s put her in a skintight “zero suit” because it makes her even more unencumbered! That’s not even addressing the actual gameplay of Other M specifically, in which she was a totally useless piece of crap character nothing like any of the other games. Get the fuck out Nintendo.

None of this is coming from a feminist standpoint. I don’t have a problem with the sexualization on an individual basis. What I do have a problem with is that the depictions are institutional. They’ve become industry standard – if your game has a woman in it, she’s probably going to be sexy – which you would think is a positive thing to say in a reaffirming positive body image kind of way – at the least, whether she turns out to be a throwaway, crappy ancillary character or not.

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Like her
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Or her.

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Her especially

God damnit.

And things h ave only gotten worse, not better. Dead or Alive 5 Last Round, by aforementioned Team Ninja – the one with the boobs – has $1,237 of DLC. Most of it is cosmetic. Additional costumes / bikinis for the female characters. What the FUCK.

 

Unlike the Khajit, Square and Square Enix have never been innocent of this crime, either. At first the Final Fantasy games were one of the few instances in Eastern development where the females weren’t pointlessly sexualized, but even that has stopped circa FFX-2 (coincidentally right when Square and Enix merged).

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Granted that Rikku’s costume didn’t really change much, nor did the NPCs who always had varying degrees of weirdly revealing clothing in FFX, Yuna’s did significantly. She changed from a consertvative dress and long hair to some edgy rocker / whatever getup. Rikku’s costume still changed to show considerably more flesh too.  It only gets better (worse) over time, too, with characters from 12, and 15.

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I don’t even understand.

 

 

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