Anyone feel weird about playing this game after the GOTY discussions?

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#1 Edited by HereAllDay (510 posts) -

This hadn't really clicked for me before listening to the GOTY podcasts, but listening to Abby and Vinny talk about how they were affected by the pervy-ness of the game, along with the upskirt trophy and Yoko Taro's "I really like girls" comment (both of which I also didn't know about before GOTY), I'm starting to feel a little weirded out while playing through this. As much as I like my media to have philosophical and existential musings, I don't know how I feel about playing as a grossly objectified version of the creator's sexual fantasies who's dressed in a short skirt and high heels for no real reason.

Granted, I'm only a few hours into Route A and haven't gotten to some of the larger existential revelations that the game is purported to have and while I'm sure those could change the tone of the game entirely, I'm curious if anyone else feels the way I do in the early parts of the game and if you're going to (or did) just power through it.

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#2 Edited by Puchiko (847 posts) -

You don't actually look up her skirt to get the trophy, the trophy acknowledges the fact you tried to look up it so its your morals which are in question. As for the outfit she wears, Kotaku did a pretty good explanation of how it was influenced by Harajuku fashion and not just a skimpy french maid outfit which Abby keeps calling it. The game's unique style is what drew me and a lot of people to it.

Making a pretty woman is now objectifying women in games these days.... I don't know how you correlate this to his sexual fantasies but every man/woman has them and some express them through their art. Is he supposed to say he likes dudes? Adam has full frontal nudity scenes but no one complained about that...

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#3 Edited by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

This is an interesting point of discussion, HereAllDay. I played through the entire game before finding out about this, and it really wasn't an issue for me at all, but I can see how it would shift your perspective to have heard about it beforehand. I wonder if it would have been more problematic for me if I had known about it while playing. I guess I never felt like it was something the game was lingering on unnecessarily, and it wasn't a focus for me while I was playing, so I didn't really think it through. For what it's worth, my 15-year-old daughter has recently started playing the game and hasn't been bothered by it, although she does watch a lot of anime and may just be immune to this sort of thing.

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#4 Edited by HereAllDay (510 posts) -

@puchiko said:

You don't actually look up her skirt to get the trophy, the trophy acknowledges the fact you tried to look up it so its your morals which are in question. As for the outfit she wears, Kotaku did a pretty good explanation of how it was influenced by Harajuku fashion and not just a skimpy french maid outfit which Abby keeps calling it. Making a pretty woman is now objectifying women in games these days.... Is he supposed to say he likes dudes?

Adam has full frontal nudity but no one complained about that...

People are going to interpret things and derive meaning from them based on their own personal experiences and backgrounds. If you grew up in the west or have had western media be a major force in shaping your perception of the world, that outfit looks like it's a french maid outfit. Also, yoko taro's "I like girls comment" came after he was asked why she wears high heels, not as to what his sexual orientation was. I am however still interested in reading the article if you want to throw a link out to it.

As for why male full frontal nudity does not draw ire like female nudity does, that is way too deep and a bit too much of a tangent to dive into and discuss here. I personally don't think it's any sort of "unfairness" and just people realizing that the objectification of women has been much more of an issue than the objectification of men throughout human history and are therefore being more vigilant about it. It's why you could have something like magic mike but doing that with the genders swapped would not be cool in modern times. It's not a stripping (no pun intended) of equality, but just an acknowledgement that the pendulum has often swung too far in the other direction and we might need a bit of a correction.

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#5 Posted by hankrazorbeard (122 posts) -

Abby has expressed distaste for Bayonetta and Metal Gear Solid for sexualised character designs (despite having played neither) so I think her opinions on Automata should be taken with a grain of salt.

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#7 Posted by Dray2k (884 posts) -

Sometimes it takes another person to make people aware of something. If you feel put off by the game just don't play it until you feel more confortable again.

I don't think what you're saying is unreasonable at all. Its like telling your friend about a little tidbit on food that gives it somewhat of a bad aftertaste.

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#8 Edited by Capum15 (6011 posts) -

Not in the slightest. Like sure the first half of Route A and B are essentially "pretty girl and pretty boy murder robots" but the last half start diving into some more serious stuff, and then there's everything after the end of B. Also the side quests are immediate and set the tone themselves extremely well. I also never thought of it as a maid outfit, either.

Also yeah Adam was just buck naked and nobody seemed to care about that. But also there was just so much happening during that bit that I also extremely didn't care.

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#9 Edited by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

I guess I didn't see the game's object (ha) as objectification because it spent a reasonable amount of time interrogating gender and setting up relationships that placed women in positions of power (the Commander, two of the three main characters, the Resistance leader, etc). Yes, 2B is dressed all sexy-like, but she's also a total badass who strays from the typically over-emotional and helpless female anime stereotypes, whereas 9S is more of a softie and the one who is more driven by his heart. So I guess to me it was hard to think that Yoko Taro was designing 2B/A2 as sexual objects; they were so beyond that to me that it never really entered my mind.

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#10 Edited by Milkman (19303 posts) -

I just started playing it after GOTY and I don’t know, there’s definitely some shots where you get a real full view up 2B’s skirt but other than that, I’m not really getting much “pervy-ness.” I haven’t noticed a lot of lingering camera angles in the cutscenes or anything either and the story certainly doesn’t sexualize her in any way.

For me, the only thing impeding my progress so far is knowing that I’m going to have to play through all the same stuff again for Ending B.

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#11 Posted by Capum15 (6011 posts) -

@milkman: I thought the same of B before I started it, but they add in a few different bits of story here and there for the second perspective sort of thing to help with that (and different side quests I think?). Also the hacking cuts down the time on bosses by a lot.

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#12 Posted by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

@milkman said:

I just started playing it after GOTY and I don’t know, there’s definitely some shots where you get a real full view up 2B’s skirt but other than that, I’m not really getting much “pervy-ness.” I haven’t noticed a lot of lingering camera angles in the cutscenes or anything either and the story certainly doesn’t sexualize her in anyway.

For me, the only thing impeding my progress so far is knowing that I’m going to have to play through all the same stuff again for Ending B.

It's not exactly the same stuff for the B route, milkman: a lot of sequences get shortened/eliminated, or you get to see what 9S was doing in a separate location, or you get new insight to what's going on. I really think the A route is the least interesting of the bunch, although it serves as an important foundation to what comes later.

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#13 Edited by FrostyRyan (2924 posts) -

@hereallday said:

I don't know how I feel about playing as a grossly objectified version of the creator's sexual fantasies who's dressed in a short skirt and high heels for no real reason.

The reason is because it looks cool.

It's the same reason any clothing designer in real life makes clothes. 2B looks like that because it's a stylized video game in a stylized world and Yoko Taro wanted to give her a cool costume to wear.

It still baffles me how limiting some people are with a female character's friggin wardrobe. The character Eve in the game is a muscular shirtless dude throughout, but because 2B is a girl, she's not allowed to wear a skirt and high heels? How is she so grossly objectified? She's wearing a nice outfit. People in real life like to wear nice outfits that compliment their physique too, ya know. The end.

Women characters aren't allowed to just exist anymore and be women characters, everyone and their mom needs to put them under a microscope. People really need to get over this crap.

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#14 Edited by Puchiko (847 posts) -

I would honestly recommend watching EpicNameBro on Youtube's lore play through he is currently doing of this game. He goes into a lot of the symbolism and reason why the game was designed the way it was and he as someone who lived in Japan most his life, he gives a unique American looking at Japanese culture perspective. Also he points out a lot of translation differences 8-4 got wrong from the original Japanese voice acting.

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#15 Edited by ll_Exile_ll (3017 posts) -

I'm not one to get "offended" by over-sexualized characters in media. However, I do often think it's really dumb and treats the audience like horny morons rather than people looking for a meaningful experience. My issue with those types of characters is purely from a critical perspective, not a moral one.

I have, on many occasions, found myself unable to take a character seriously because of their ridiculous sexy attire that no one would ever wear in the types of situations video game characters are often in. One notable example of a character I otherwise thought was interesting but I just couldn't take seriously because of their outfit was Kaine from the first Nier. She had quite possibility the most outrageous and idiotic costume design I've ever seen in a video game character, and it was hard to take her seriously, despite otherwise being an interesting and well written character.

All that being said, I never had these issues with 2B. In terms of over the top, immersion breaking outfits for female video game characters, there are far, far worse offenders than any of the characters in Automata. Calling 2B "grossly objectified" is extreme hyperbole. Sure, the outfit is sexy, but it's not over the top or absurd. For me, it's squarely on the side of "cool looking for the sake of looking cool" that plenty of video game character of both genders embody. I have no problem with characters looking attractive if it's not immersion breaking.

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#16 Posted by nutter (2289 posts) -

Nah. It's not my favorite thing about the game, but I'm not so prudish that it hurts the experience. I'm comfortable with what I'm seeing and how I perceive it.

Hell, I enjoy the fight mechanics of DOA. That's a struggle between enjoying the game and shaking my head at shameless bikini-brawling.

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#17 Posted by HereAllDay (510 posts) -
@hereallday said:

I don't know how I feel about playing as a grossly objectified version of the creator's sexual fantasies who's dressed in a short skirt and high heels for no real reason.

The reason is because it looks cool.

It's the same reason any clothing designer in real life makes clothes. 2B looks like that because it's a stylized video game in a stylized world and Yoko Taro wanted to give her a cool costume to wear.

It still baffles me how limiting some people are with a female character's friggin wardrobe. The character Eve in the game is a muscular shirtless dude throughout, but because 2B is a girl, she's not allowed to wear a skirt and high heels? How is she so grossly objectified? She's wearing a nice outfit. People in real life like to wear nice outfits that compliment their physique too, ya know. The end.

Women characters aren't allowed to just exist anymore and be women characters, everyone and their mom needs to put them under a microscope. People really need to get over this crap.

The point is that she's a humanoid android that is meant to fight and kill. If you're trying to tell me that wearing high heels would not impede a humanoid form factor's ability to participate effectively in combat, I'm not really buying it.

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#18 Edited by HereAllDay (510 posts) -

@mundanesoul said:

This is an interesting point of discussion, HereAllDay. I played through the entire game before finding out about this, and it really wasn't an issue for me at all, but I can see how it would shift your perspective to have heard about it beforehand. I wonder if it would have been more problematic for me if I had known about it while playing. I guess I never felt like it was something the game was lingering on unnecessarily, and it wasn't a focus for me while I was playing, so I didn't really think it through. For what it's worth, my 15-year-old daughter has recently started playing the game and hasn't been bothered by it, although she does watch a lot of anime and may just be immune to this sort of thing.

Yeah, can't argue that knowing about it beforehand has probably affected my perception of it. I think you (and everyone) that has mentioned not lingering are right for the most part. The thing I have found most unnerving is the camera tilt every single time you start to sprint.

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#19 Posted by FrostyRyan (2924 posts) -

@hereallday: Like I said, it's highly stylized. If you were making a more realistic thing about an android fighting machines, then it would make more sense for her to be wearing some kind of combat suit at all times. but this game is over the top in style and basically an anime or manga in video game form. Putting 2B in this outfit was a choice of artistic style vs. realism and Yoko Taro chose artistic style because realism is boring in this world in regards to art direction. It's not what he was going for.

By the way, you actually do eventually wear a combat suit for a portion of the game when things really go down.

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#20 Posted by FrodoBaggins (2101 posts) -

I haven't played Nier (yet) but I have absolutely no problem what so ever with any stuff like this. It all seems so mild to me I find it bizarre people even take offense/get worked up. Give me all the skimpy clad men/women you want!

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#21 Edited by Puchiko (847 posts) -

@hereallday said:
@frostyryan said:
@hereallday said:

I don't know how I feel about playing as a grossly objectified version of the creator's sexual fantasies who's dressed in a short skirt and high heels for no real reason.

The reason is because it looks cool.

It's the same reason any clothing designer in real life makes clothes. 2B looks like that because it's a stylized video game in a stylized world and Yoko Taro wanted to give her a cool costume to wear.

It still baffles me how limiting some people are with a female character's friggin wardrobe. The character Eve in the game is a muscular shirtless dude throughout, but because 2B is a girl, she's not allowed to wear a skirt and high heels? How is she so grossly objectified? She's wearing a nice outfit. People in real life like to wear nice outfits that compliment their physique too, ya know. The end.

Women characters aren't allowed to just exist anymore and be women characters, everyone and their mom needs to put them under a microscope. People really need to get over this crap.

The point is that she's a humanoid android that is meant to fight and kill. If you're trying to tell me that wearing high heels would not impede a humanoid form factor's ability to participate effectively in combat, I'm not really buying it.

There's a lot of anime/movies (Kingsman ie) that high heels are an effective weapon because of their pointy tip. Also this is a game, so real world physics of high heels really don't matter. I would be more put off if she was wearing Crocs or Uggs

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#22 Edited by militantfreudian (688 posts) -

I'm typically sensitive to gratuitous sexualization. However, I wouldn't stop playing a game I'm enjoying because of it, as long as I'm aware of how and why the game's portrayal of a certain type of character is problematic. I'll say this though, the game's "horniness" pays off in one particular moment later on in the story.

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#23 Posted by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

I wonder if there's anything to the idea that these androids would have been replicating a human form that had been extinct for thousands of years and therefore only had idealized depictions to work from. I doubt that was Taro had in mind (especially considering some of his comments on the matter), but the game is deep enough that I could see it and I would find it pretty ingenious if that were the case.

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#24 Posted by FrostyRyan (2924 posts) -

@militantfreudian: Are you talking about that one line near the end of route B? It was something like (spoilers) " You're thinking about how much you want to **** 2B aren't you"

if it's something after that, don't tell me. I'm only a bit into route c

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#25 Posted by Rich666 (428 posts) -

Why would I feel weird because of the opinions of others? If this is the only aspect of the game that they can see, then I feel really sorry for them. Aside from 2B's outfit, which may be a bit much for some, there's nothing overtly "pervy" about anything else in the story. It's funny how some try to take the moral high road, simply because it seems like the PC thing to do.

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#26 Edited by ripelivejam (13226 posts) -

@rich666: I think their feelings and opinions are just as valid. Just because the rest of the game operates on a different and arguably more austere level doesn't render those discussions and the perviness of that aspect moot.

I personally find it a little immature and ostentatious, but it's not enough to overshadow the rest of the game for me and I'm real eager to see where it goes after being talked up so. But I can see how it can be more egregious for some. It could have been toned down, but I can deal with it. At least Yoko Taro's honest about it, I suppose.

I also honestly like the general aesthetic of the design for the androids (black outfit and silver/white hair with the blindfolds); still playing through so not sure if there's any relevance to it.

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#27 Edited by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

I think I have to agree with @ripelivejam that we can discuss these things without it being the end of the world; people are allowed to be as offended as they want to be by this without it affecting your enjoyment of the game, and it's a social issue worth considering if a number of people are feeling that way.

I mean, I'm in love with Persona 5 right now, but some of the dumb homophobic shit in that game really turns me off and feels completely unnecessary, especially since I feel like it's doing interesting things with gender roles in some cases. I can see how people would feel the same about this game in some respects. (By the by, I think it's downright criminal that didn't include a Yusuke romance option. That moment about halfway through his Confidant track where the MC and Yusuke are in the church posing cruciform is amazing, and the earlier boat scene seems like a perfect setup for romance, not to mention that the game repeatedly gives you conversation options with him to the effect of "Let's get naked!") But I digress...

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#28 Posted by militantfreudian (688 posts) -

@frostyryan: Yes, that's the one, but the spoilercast Waypoint did with Alex made me realize another thing about that moment. Maybe give it a listen after you finish the game?

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#29 Edited by deactivated-5a923fc7099e3 (534 posts) -

There is a puritan streak to some of the GB crew that is kinda off-putting to me. I agree that the depiction of women in games (and especially Japanese games) can be explicit and kinda pervy. But then again games have always aimed towards satisfying base emotions like violence and sex. There is nothing inherently wrong with that in my opinion. If you are going to dismiss games because of that you might end up with a very small portion of games that are acceptable to you. The same goes for any popular art form. I am sure the depiction of males in games is also rather idealized and stereotypical. Sex is fun and it sells. We all have fantasies and we all like tantalizing depictions of men and/or women. The amount of porn that goes around the web is surely a testament to that. To deny these things feels disingenuous to me. Now if you want to champion for better work conditions for sex-workers and women in the porn industry I would be first in line to join your ranks. I also would very much like to see more variety in games. But count me out when it comes to puritan outrage over the depiction of the sexes in games.

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#30 Edited by fnrslvr (579 posts) -

"... remember that it is both possible (and even necessary) to simultaneously enjoy media while also being critical of it’s more problematic or pernicious aspects."

--Anita Sarkeesian, Tropes vs Women

Your awareness counts for a lot. Granted the pervyness might actually ruin the experience for you, but you don't have to feel like you're complicit in perpetuating misogyny or anything like that just for enjoying a game that has problems. (e.g. plenty of social justice proponents among my friend circles got deep into games like Horizon and Breath of the Wild despite things like cultural appropriation in the former and transmisogyny in the latter. They commented on those things and kept enjoying the games.)

---

fwiw, the thing from GOTY and other Nier spoilercasts that turned me off of playing the game myself, was that something about how the game's proponents talked it up as doing something to the effect of "moving the machine intelligence conversation forward on the real issues" just rubbed me the wrong way. I have a really high bar for this sort of thing (stemming in no small part from a math/compsci background, which maybe ruins me for these themes in media), and the actual events and themes they spoiled didn't come close to clearing that bar for me. I might be being really unfair on Nier by letting a bunch of games critics inadvertently set the bar really high for the game, but then I remember that without the mind-shattering philosophical revelation angle you're left with what has been reviewed as a relatively weak character action game, so I'm probably right to pass on it.

Also I let my pile of shame get disgustingly huge and it's crushing me, send help.

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#31 Posted by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

@bdead: Just because something's popular (even enjoyable) doesn't mean it isn't problematic. Also, this argument is hardly puritan; the GB argument was less "women in games shouldn't be wearing sexy clothes" than it was "women shouldn't be objectified," which is a much different thing.

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#32 Edited by Humanity (18945 posts) -

I played through all the endings up until the very end and I can't say I gave it all that much thought, and the GOTY deliberations didn't really do anything to change the way I feel about it. Growing up I watched a whole lot of anime in high-school - it was a very intense phase where I simply adored the animation and the sometimes more mature, and sometimes incredibly childish storylines contained within that really creative art style. I suppose by watching a whole lot of anime I became somewhat desensitized to Japans take on sexuality, and their more liberal approach in expressing it for better and worse. OF course I can see how people from the West that never encountered this stuff before would find depictions of sexuality even as mundane as those witnessed in Nier to be strange or even off-putting.

That said these are just games. Play what you like, don't play what you don't like. Enjoy Nier, love Dream Daddy, play a farming simulator, as long as your grievances are your own and you don't hold them against others - do your own thing and have fun with it.

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#33 Edited by Zeik (5221 posts) -

The only part of the game that feels overtly sexual to me is the part where you can blow off 2B's skirt entirely and run around with her ass cheeks blowing in the wind. That's totally optional and I never did it more than once to see that I could, but it is there. Everything else about the game? Not at all. Even 2B's outfit feels far more reminiscent of a dancer or ballerina outfit than some kind of fetishistic maid, at least to me.

Maybe it's just because I've played OG Nier and seen enough of Drakengard 3 to know that if Taro really wanted to get horny he wouldn't limit himself to something as mundane as a skirt and high heels.

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#34 Posted by pyrodactyl (4221 posts) -

Games indeed cross the objectification "problematic" line quite often but I don't think Nier Automata does, at all. If someone finds a skirt, heels and a black dress objectifying I think it says more about them and the society they were raised in than it does about the game. The game even comments on that in a stricking way with its "I want to **** " scene.

If you got hung up on the lack of in universe justification for the outfit you probably missed the point of the game entirely. I guess that's fine but it's in moments like these I particularly miss Austin. He had the ability to push back on these surface level hot takes without sounding condescending. He always brought the discussion to a more informed, deeper place in a way that felt effortless.

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#35 Posted by TechnoSyndrome (1614 posts) -

If you got hung up on the lack of in universe justification for the outfit you probably missed the point of the game entirely. I guess that's fine but it's in moments like these I particularly miss Austin. He had the ability to push back on these surface level hot takes without sounding condescending. He always brought the discussion to a more informed, deeper place in a way that felt effortless.

Austin had a pretty great takedown of the whole "Nier is too horny" discourse on one of the episodes of the Waypoint podcast. I wish I knew which episode number it was.

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#36 Edited by SirPsychoSexy91 (2 posts) -

Absolutely not. Abby is focusing on a super non-issue that has a such a tiny appearance in a game that has so much more going into it than the “pretty girl fighting robots” ignorance that she can’t seem to get past. I’ve been listening to these giant bombcasts for the last year now, going back to the old ones from 08 and 09 once I’ve finished with the current one and these GOTY deliberations have been the most infuriating to listen to of all, because of one reason: Abby. She throws such a temper tantrum during these deliberations and says the same thing over and over “this game is very good, it’s writing is so good. I just feel like you’re wrong because.....this game is just so good”. She can’t say anything else. It’s ridiculous.

Then she goes on to attack the overt sexualization of 2b and says it was so distracting for her to play the game, are you kidding me? I liked when one of the guys retorted to her when they sarcastically brought up shirtless Mario being overt sexiness. She retaliates with “I like seeing his nipples, sue me”. Seriously? Double standard?

B-b-but this game is so good.

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#37 Posted by Turambar (8251 posts) -

The point is that she's a humanoid android that is meant to fight and kill. If you're trying to tell me that wearing high heels would not impede a humanoid form factor's ability to participate effectively in combat, I'm not really buying it.

Do you know what else greatly impedes combat capability? Melee weapons in a world where guns exist.

There are arguments that can be made over how 2B's attire impedes people's enjoyment of the game. I don't see how versimilitude can be one of them.

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#38 Posted by Rejizzle (1136 posts) -

I love Nier Automata, but yeah. 2B's outfit does a disservice to an otherwise excellent game. It plays into the whole subservience to a higher power, and sexual themes of the game, but it's still a little too over the top for me personally.

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#39 Edited by Turambar (8251 posts) -

@ll_exile_ll said:

I have, on many occasions, found myself unable to take a character seriously because of their ridiculous sexy attire that no one would ever wear in the types of situations video game characters are often in. One notable example of a character I otherwise thought was interesting but I just couldn't take seriously because of their outfit was Kaine from the first Nier. She had quite possibility the most outrageous and idiotic costume design I've ever seen in a video game character, and it was hard to take her seriously, despite otherwise being an interesting and well written character.

Ironically, I actually think Kaine's outfit is far more essential to her character and far less trivial than 2B's. The act of showing off skin is an active desire of the character while a frilly skirt is something 2B is entirely neutral towards.

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#40 Edited by Puchiko (847 posts) -

Sexual themes? Can you elaborate? Other than the robots pretending to get it on, I don't recall any sex scenes. The higher power you are talking about is her questioning her existence and why she was created and not some horny commander like in most western games.

The cover art for the game and demo clearly showed her outfit yet you still bought the game?

@rejizzle said:

I love Nier Automata, but yeah. 2B's outfit does a disservice to an otherwise excellent game. It plays into the whole subservience to a higher power, and sexual themes of the game, but it's still a little too over the top for me personally.

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#41 Posted by Slasktotten (90 posts) -

Cool so I'm about to make a comparison between a game I haven't played through (finished the demo though) and a film I haven't watched, bear with me!
I thought the visual design, with the whole maid thing was just boring and stupid and wrote it off as "anime bullshit". Taken at face value, it looks like some kind of manga version of 50 shades of grey. I realise this is me and I realise I'm lacking context and that it's incredible reductive.

However I was wondering, those of you who have played the game and watched Wonder Woman, what's the difference? From the outside looking in they both appear to be about scantily clad female protagonists running around fighting? But one work is being criticised as off-puttingly horny/objectifying while the other (in my experience) is not.

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#42 Edited by nutter (2289 posts) -

@bdead: If I were working for CBS and going unscripted on mic or camera for the number of hours these guys are, in this day and age, I'd probably come across as prudish, too.

I think you need to be careful with current outrage culture. Hell, I remember the storm when Dan was hired and it was revealed that he had a penis.

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#43 Posted by TheChris (549 posts) -

I always saw the maid costumes as a reflection of the YorHa's purpose as "servants" of humanity.

Like, the game establishes that the purpose of YorHa is to appear as official as possible, to create the lie that the humans are still alive and on the Moon. In that sense, the flashy get up even despite how unpractical they might be ultimately serve the bigger picture. They need to be noticed, they need to be known and their motto "Glory to Mankind". Later on she does sport a combat outfit, once the facade has been torn off. The outfits themselves are a stylistic choice in how they are designed, the art designer previous worked on Bravely Default, and his design certainly comes to life here. The upskirt stuff and blowing your pants off is just sillyness, same as the ridiculous Insect King Mini-Game in Yakuza Kiwami, or the Phone Club.

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#44 Edited by Puchiko (847 posts) -

Nier: Automata's Protagonist Would Look At Home On Japan's Most Fashionable Street

Nier: Automata takes place in Earth’s far, far future, in which an android named 2B defends the planet from aliens. But she’s also dressed like a girl on Harajuku street, a street in Shibuya famous for its quirky street style.

Harajuku street in Shibuya, Tokyo, is home to a vibrant youth culture and exuberant fashion, popularized and documented in the recently shuttered magazine Fruits, edited and shot by legendary street fashion photographer Shoichi Aoki. 2B is dressed in an Elegant Gothic Lolita style. While she shows quite a bit more skin than what you would see in most EGL outfits, she’s still in a heavy black brocade with princess sleeves, making her look both deadly and delicate. It’s a very adult look, while also employing some forms, fabrics and shapes associated with childhood.

While 2B has a slit in her skirt all the way up her thigh, her dress is called “skater dress,” a girly, style that flows out from her hips.

Its not a maid out fit... I think some people have different fantasies of their own they are imposing on 2b..

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#45 Posted by afabs515 (2005 posts) -

If you self destruct as 9S, you see his boxer shorts too. I really think this whole "issue" is totally overblown. I also thought her outfit was thematically appropriate as she's a servant of mankind sent to earth to "clean up the mess", let's say. Or at least that was my takeaway. There are far worse examples of over-sexualization of female characters in video games than 2B or A2.

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#46 Edited by TheChris (549 posts) -

The puffy shoulders and skirt kinda makes it look like a maid outfit. 9S's coat kinda seems butler-ish too, not so much his short pants though. Their clothes signify their social status: as lessers, subservient to mankind always. The YoRHa motto, “Glory to Mankind,” echoes this solemn truth, that they have no agency over their own “lives.” (Or what life as an android even is.) 2B and 9S wear outfits fit for maids (if maids were a touch more goth, that is). Like the two villains, Adam and Eve, only wear pants because not wearing them is “socially unacceptable,” according to the human literature they've read, even when they have no genitalia to shield.

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#47 Posted by deactivated-5a923fc7099e3 (534 posts) -

@mundanesoul: I tend to be very wary of labeling things as problematic when it comes to art. I guess I am very much a libertarian when it comes to these things. Maybe it is because of my upbringing (my mother was very much a part of the sexual revolution). In my view much of the new wave of feminism is based on a more authoritarian critique on culture. I don't like the way this world view focuses on feelings of shame in an attempt to elevate the social position of repressed groups.

Take the narrative around cultural appropriation for example. The view that it is problematic when cultural symbols that come from a repressed minority are used in the dominant culture doesn't fit with my idea on how cultures evolve and grow. I feel the positive effects of cultural exchange far outweigh any negative effects in the long run, even if there is an imbalance of power or status. It is undeniable that the west has a rough history when it comes to how we treated our encounters with other cultures. But out of all this miserie the one thing that has led to a more humane interaction is the cultural exchange of symbols. Even if a lot of it is crude and stereotypical to start with these exchanges contain the seeds of a dialogue, a more egalitarian view of "the other" based on the appreciation of certain aesthetics. The intention of the artist is important in this context but labeling a certain work as problematic just because it borrows elements from another culture is more harmful to the broader cultural exchange then it is helpful towards a minority in my view.

The same goes for the narrative around the depiction of genders in art. The critique that a sexualized depiction of women is equal to the objectification of women does not fit with my view on the role of sex in society and equality of the genders. When we look at history the main weapon patriarchal societies have used to repress women is shame. Women were to cover themselves up, their sexuality was denied and seen as deeply shameful. Sex was meant for men to procreate and keep their lineage guaranteed. The pleasure of sexual intercourse was labeled sinful and a thing of the devil. To make sure women would not tempt men into the sin of adultery they were to stay at home. The sexual revolution has changed this archaic view for the better. Women demanded the right to their own bodies and sexuality. Sex was no longer shameful and the depiction of sex no longer a taboo. The pill and abortion allow women to finally separate sexual behavior from procreation. They have gained the power to plan their family. This is not only an important step towards equality of the genders but it is also the most important way to combat poverty. I think it is important to keep explicit depictions of sex out of the taboo sphere for this reason. When we start to introduce the concept of shame we open the door to control. The benefits of an open and tolerant culture toward sexuality far outweigh the negative effects. I rather have a culture were people are free to enjoy sex in their own way then a culture of shame were certain aspects of sexuality are taboo.

I'm sorry for the rant but I hope this helps to explain my view on these things and my reservations around some of the views held by the GB crew. I understand they come from a good place but I really think that in their effort to strife for a better world many people have lost sight of the historic perspective and have been lured into a regressive and ultimately harmful narrative.

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#48 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (3017 posts) -

@turambar said:
@ll_exile_ll said:

I have, on many occasions, found myself unable to take a character seriously because of their ridiculous sexy attire that no one would ever wear in the types of situations video game characters are often in. One notable example of a character I otherwise thought was interesting but I just couldn't take seriously because of their outfit was Kaine from the first Nier. She had quite possibility the most outrageous and idiotic costume design I've ever seen in a video game character, and it was hard to take her seriously, despite otherwise being an interesting and well written character.

Ironically, I actually think Kaine's outfit is far more essential to her character and far less trivial than 2B's. The act of showing off skin is an active desire of the character while a frilly skirt is something 2B is entirely neutral towards.

That element of Kaine's character could have easily been achieved with a far less ridiculous outfit. My problem isn't that Kaine's outfit is sexy (honestly, I don't think it really is anyway), or that she's showing too much skin, but that it's completely absurd and dumb looking. They could have easily had her in a revealing outfit that fit her character without it being so stupid. It's just bad costume design as far as I'm concerned.

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#49 Posted by TheChris (549 posts) -

@turambar said:
@ll_exile_ll said:

I have, on many occasions, found myself unable to take a character seriously because of their ridiculous sexy attire that no one would ever wear in the types of situations video game characters are often in. One notable example of a character I otherwise thought was interesting but I just couldn't take seriously because of their outfit was Kaine from the first Nier. She had quite possibility the most outrageous and idiotic costume design I've ever seen in a video game character, and it was hard to take her seriously, despite otherwise being an interesting and well written character.

Ironically, I actually think Kaine's outfit is far more essential to her character and far less trivial than 2B's. The act of showing off skin is an active desire of the character while a frilly skirt is something 2B is entirely neutral towards.

That element of Kaine's character could have easily been achieved with a far less ridiculous outfit. My problem isn't that Kaine's outfit is sexy (honestly, I don't think it really is anyway), or that she's showing too much skin, but that it's completely absurd and dumb looking. They could have easily had her in a revealing outfit that fit her character without it being so stupid. It's just bad costume design as far as I'm concerned.

To be fair, Nier's outfit isn't any less ridiculous either. He wears his underpants on his face for crying out loud! :P

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#50 Edited by MundaneSoul (74 posts) -

@bdead: Thank you for elaborating! Your perspective is really interesting and I think your expansion on your earlier post does a good job of bringing up some important points, even where I don't entirely agree. I can see how you would feel like some of the comments from the GB crew were repressive, but I honestly don't think their intent was that 2B's sexuality should be limited in any way, just that perhaps Taro was focusing on it for his own pleasure more than for the purpose of female empowerment--I don't necessarily agree, but think it's certainly worth discussing.

As I said though, I'm glad you clarified your stance on this. I feel like I understand where you're coming from now and I appreciate what you're saying.