Ken Levine Talks Elizabeth's Respect

#1 Edited by DonutFever (3550 posts) -
Linkity Link. (I feel horrible about linking to IGN) 
 
I was surprised by this. I think it's kinda silly to think that it's weird for people to talk about the large cup size of a character instead of the size of her eyes or costume design. Of course it's more controversial, it's more exploitative.  
 
EDIT: I have no idea how I messed up the title. I meant "Appearance", not "Respect". Those... those words are not exactly easily confused.
#2 Posted by WatanabeKazuma (989 posts) -

Hm, I definitely agree with the sentiment, but not with the fact that he seems so surprised with the general reactions of people. Not least of all by the fact that Elizabeth does have an attractive design, one which is bound to draw comments. I would understand more if she was more conservatively dressed or whatever, but wearing a low cut dress hardly screams "take me seriously as a character". And of course she will be the focus over Booker, most of the promotion is based around Elizabeth after all, the interaction with her is the crux of that.

Also I think the sort of desired reaction will come in time, its a bit pre-mature to expect it right away. Only when people have played the game will they form an emotional attachment to Elizabeth , there needs to be context for that to happen. So far I don't see how that's possible seeing as screen-shots and brief videos are the only thing that fans have to base their opinions around. Her appearance is one of the few things they can definitely comment about. It may be annoying, but its understandable.

#3 Posted by TeflonBilly (4713 posts) -

I'm sorry, but in a demo where I saw a dude shoot ravens outta his hands and fly around ona zipline, I still found her thunderous cleavage to be the most unbelievable. I was happy to see that they reigned in her proportions a bit in the latest trailer cause it just looked silly compared to the rest of the asthetics for her to wear something so low cut if she was that well endowed

#4 Edited by SomeDeliCook (2224 posts) -

If Levine feels this way, then give her a V-neck.

You can't wear a low-cut top and get disappointed that people look at them. Plus, they are pretty exaggerated, along with her fake looking eyes. If you want me to take her seriously, make her realistic looking, like Alyx.

#5 Posted by Rattle618 (1463 posts) -

What is wrong with kids these days, I cant believe people are complaining about seeing too much boobs.

#6 Posted by dagas (2746 posts) -

"People in media tend to be more attractive than the general public." His last statement pretty much sums it all up. Bioshock isn't trying to be a realistic game.

Men and women in video games look the way the do because they are meant to be someone the players want to be or want to be with. Would people have wanted to play as a skinny nerdy Marcus Fenix? I certainly create as bad ass characters as I can in games like Saints Row.

It's another thing if you are trying to make a realistic experience, but how many games do that? Most games are about about feeling powerful not weak. The only genre I can think of where the main character being weak serves a purpose is survival horror. Or drama or documentary games, but how many of those are they?

Until we have games that are trying to be more than ego power trips we won't have many realistic characters. I see nothing wrong with that since games are IMO escapist by nature. you escape your normal boring life to become a total badass. Sure I would like more realistic games as well, games that tell a powerful story with realistic characters, but you don't expect a blockbuster movie to have that so why should AAA games? You need to look at indie stuff to find that sort of thing. I just hope we get to a point in a few years where indie developers can create realsitic character models insetad of making 16-bit style graphics. The day when LA Noire quality characters is avaliable for indie devs is the day we get some really awesome indie games. And it will happen, just look at the revolution of film and web-TV that came from digital cameras and later HD cameras that could shoot high quality scenes for a couple of hundred bucks.

#7 Posted by WatanabeKazuma (989 posts) -

@dagas said:

"People in media tend to be more attractive than the general public." His last statement pretty much sums it all up. Bioshock isn't trying to be a realistic game.

Exactly, but that's the thing, he seems to be rallying against something which he himself perpetuates to a degree. Her appearance shouldn't be the main focus considering their ambitions with the character, but they make her look the way she does all the same.

The article itself may be bringing the subject more into focus, but like I said earlier I wouldn't be taking any perceptions of Elizabeth to heart until people have actually played the game.

#8 Posted by I_smell (3925 posts) -
#9 Posted by N7 (3573 posts) -

If he's talking about her respect, let's hope Macho Man doesn't find out.

#10 Posted by laserbolts (5311 posts) -

Man gamers are the worst crowd to please. So nitpicky it's ridiculous. Developers should ignore them and do whatever they want to do because there is no pleasing some people. Kojima had the right idea in MGS 2 basically saying fuck you guys.

#11 Posted by benjaebe (2783 posts) -

I agree with Levine. The reaction to her character design, which although exaggerated in some respects (much like most of Bioshock's art design and something that's evident even in her facial structure), has been kind of ridiculous. Claims of 'hypersexualization' and unrealism when she's wearing a period-appropriate corset that reduces the waist and emphasizes the bust and hips. Which is what women wore back then...and some men. Not every woman has to be Alyx for them to be believable characters. Just because she has cleavage doesn't mean you can't take her seriously as a character, and I think that's what Levine was getting at.

#12 Posted by Sooty (8082 posts) -

Games have been giving us big titted unrealistic females for years and years and years, I don't really see the point in getting annoyed by it anymore.

Accept your big busted overlords.

#13 Edited by FluxWaveZ (19308 posts) -

Old design Elizabeth > New design Elizabeth

#14 Posted by MentalDisruption (1618 posts) -

So he was surprised that more people were talking about her boobs instead of her story or eyes. Guess he hasn't spent much time on the internet. The average person usually doesn't realize that they are being affected by things like eye expression as they're playing a game.

#15 Posted by Subjugation (4718 posts) -

I can't take anyone seriously who gets upset over her boobs. Is that really what defines Elizabeth's character? No, and if it does for you, well, you need to re-evaluate where your attention is being placed. Her very emotive face is what caught my attention. If we don't see graphical leaps in the coming years, I believe that smoother, more believable animation is the logical next step since it can help so much in the immersion factor. I encourage you to go (re)watch the trailers for Bioshock Infinite and pay special attention to the expression on Elizabeth's face. You can't tell me that it doesn't draw you in.

#16 Posted by Shady (503 posts) -

@FluxWaveZ said:

Old design Elizabeth > New design Elizabeth

I need visual evidence.

#17 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19308 posts) -

@Shady said:

@FluxWaveZ said:

Old design Elizabeth > New design Elizabeth

I need visual evidence.

From this
To this
#18 Posted by Commisar123 (1790 posts) -

I've never heard anyone complain about this.

#19 Posted by Shady (503 posts) -

Whoa. They did opposite Kirby NA box art to her.

#20 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19308 posts) -
#21 Posted by Encephalon (1240 posts) -

I respect Elizabeth.

#22 Posted by Commisar123 (1790 posts) -
#23 Edited by MonkeyKing1969 (2568 posts) -

Ken is full of ______. He and his team choose to make Elizabeth that way and they did it for a purpose. She's small with big eyes, pouty lips and with prominent cleavage dressed in a corset. Let’s make no mistake here; she was not made on the model of Alyx Vance from Half-Life 2 or Elena Fisher from Uncharted. If he wanted Elizabeth to look like that girl from “The Last of Us” he could have. If he wanted her to look like...

Ken and his teams of artists made a character with sexualized attributes brought to the fore, and he knows it. He's not shocked, but I think he was annoyed to have been found with his hand being so deep down...the cookie jar. There is nothing wrong with sexuality. There is nothing wrong with being attractive, buxom, and dressed to make the most of the feminine form, but it’s says something when you go that route.

You know what I might believe Ken has some ‘social disaffective’ disorder were over qualities of her sexuality are not noticed by his brain. However, I don’t for a second believe his entire development team is equally as blind. They know they were making a character that was not only sexualized but also comically “deformed” into a sex toy! Those big 'doe eyes', small stature, curves inconsistent with her size, clothing that accentuate her shape, and a lilting feminine voice - it American hentai.

#24 Posted by Brendan (7687 posts) -

@MonkeyKing1969 said:

Ken is full of ______. He and his team choose to make Elizabeth that way and they did it for a purpose. She's small with big eyes, pouty lips and with prominent cleavage dressed in a corset. Let’s make no mistake here; she was not made on the model of Alyx Vance from Half-Life 2 or Elena Fisher from Uncharted. If he wanted Elizabeth to look like that girl from “The Last of Us” he could have. If he wanted her to look like

Ken and his teams of artists made a character with sexualized attributes brought to the fore, and he knows it. He's not shocked, but I think he was annoyed to have been found with his hand being so deep down...the cookie jar. There is nothing wrong with sexuality. There is nothing wrong with being attractive, buxom, and dressed to make the most of the feminine form, but it’s say something when you go the route.

You know what I might believe Ken has some ‘social disaffective’ disorder were over quest of sexuality are not noticed by his brain. However, I don’t for a second believe his entire development team is equally as blind. They know they were making a character that was not only sexualized but also comically “deformed” into a sex toy ! Those big 'doe eyes', small stature, curves inconsistent with her size, clothing that accentuate her shape, and a lilting feminine voice - it American hentai.

You sound like you need to take a cold shower, son. Maybe your eyes should have been watching the character open portals to other freaking dimensions instead of digital breasts.

#25 Posted by DonutFever (3550 posts) -
#26 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4594 posts) -

@MonkeyKing1969: What dimension of retardation do you hail from? Seriously.

You'd have an argument over her being attractive with "big doe eyes" and what not if every other character in the game was a photo-realistic representation of humanity. They're not. They're exaggerated and cartoony. That's the look of Bioshock, and that's the way it will stay. To say that they should've chopped off her breasts (because I mean, let's face it, big boobs are a current thing and corsets were definitely not introduced to make women look more sexually appealing), or made her more ugly is contradictory to her purpose in the game.

Ken and company know Bioshock Infinite rests entirely on that character's shoulders. In order for -anything- in the game to have weight, the player needs to appreciate or like Elizabeth. By making her look attractive as well as innocent, they're psychologically influencing the player to be more protective of her when they play the game. That's why she looks the way she does, to make her connection to the player as smooth as possible. It has nothing to do with Ken Levine sitting at his desk and fapping off to renders of his characters.

#27 Posted by crazyleaves (640 posts) -
@Rattle618
What is wrong with kids these days, I cant believe people are complaining about seeing too much boobs.
For real. Boggles the mind.
#28 Posted by BabyChooChoo (4285 posts) -

As someone who constantly finds themselves staring at half-naked female characters (see: avatar, profile image, and background), oddly enough, I can honestly say I didn't even pay attention to what she was wearing until someone else pointed it out. And this was well after all the trailers, screenshots, and that 15 minutes gameplay video. Call me crazy, but I think I can believe Ken when he said her appearance was never meant to be the focus because, at least in my case, it never was.

Meh. whatever I guess.

#29 Posted by lockwoodx (2479 posts) -

Alright mouth breathers... go look up what a corset is and what it's designed to do.

#30 Posted by greenygrey (155 posts) -

@laserbolts said:

Man gamers are the worst crowd to please. So nitpicky it's ridiculous. Developers should ignore them and do whatever they want to do because there is no pleasing some people. Kojima had the right idea in MGS 2 basically saying fuck you guys.

Metal Gear Solid 2 was awesome, but we just hated Raiden. I don't mind that we get to play a new protagonist, but Raiden was an incredibly unlikable character whom I couldn't relate or identify with in any way imaginable.

#31 Posted by SirPsychoSexy (1328 posts) -

She looks way better with the bigger bust. it is a fricken video game, they want to make the character as good looking as possible, and whats wrong with big tits?

#32 Posted by Beforet (2912 posts) -

@Buzzkill said:

Alright mouth breathers... go look up what a corset is and what it's designed to do.

Well I'm no history major, but judging from this picture it was made to prepare men for gentlemanly strolls and fist fights with lions.

#33 Posted by Vexxan (4615 posts) -

Wait, NOW people are saying a video game character got too big boobs?  
 
Where the hell have they been the past decade?

#34 Posted by Phatmac (5721 posts) -

All this is really overblown to me.

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