Welcome to Empirical Purple

A blog by Simon Brady to cover a surprisingly wide range of geekiness, in a combination that no-one else does quite the same way. Probably. Either that, or it'll just be Simon talking about the likes of Football (usually the Soccer variety), PC & Tabletop Gaming, WWE, Movies, Music and occasionally even my actual job of Graphic Design, depending on what I'm up to in the world.

Monday, January 07, 2013

Did I Never Notice These?

Sex sells. By which, I assume, they meant beautiful women wearing very little are used to sell stuff. Slap a nice-looking girl on there and you can get more sales of anything, apparently.

Sometimes this advertising will happen retrospectively, such as in Star Trek Online. The game was initially released with your standard, nondescript, all-American male hero with impossibly cool hair (for a Star Trek character, at least) looking all heroic in a particularly muscle-fitting uniform. But now? Well it's an Angelina GoGo McBooberson character. Who's a Vulcan ice queen, of course (of course?).

Words can only begin to describe what is wrong with the depiction of this character. Let's just get the technical details out of the way first - you can't even pick a female Vulcan with hair that does that, as they're all immovable tranny wigs. Although you can always move the 'bust size' slider all the way to the right, even that doesn't come close to how gargantuan the norks on this one are.

The jacket open to stylishly reveal the cleavage in a futuristic utopia's non-military, military-esque uniform is totally required, also. Try to ignore the phaser with a trigger index finger, despite the trigger being thumb-operated, and the fact it's lighting up at the end like a torch instead of firing a beam. But look, there's a Galaxy-class Next Generation Enterprise to distract you yet further on the art, or a DS9 Defiant that I've added to illustrate the article! Nothing like tits and canon ships to get the Trekkies hot and sweaty.

Only the 60s Original Series skirt and leather boots on this character (a Captain, of course) are not a problem, as that's a standard costume piece available from the outset. At least she's wearing tights, too.

It's not just that picture, though, which is only a (very prominent) background image. The game is actively biased towards male players, mostly through the Bridge Officer system. The way Star Trek Online works is that your character, a Captain by default as the most senior officer on the ship at any one time no matter what their rank is, has a set of dependable officers to go with them on away missions, provide bonuses and abilities with their skills in space combat, and so forth. These subordinates are unlocked every few levels, giving you the opportunity to add to your complement.

When these officers are given out as rewards, or unlocked via the in-game store, the best ones are always female. The 'liberated' Borg option, in a Seven of Nine from Voyager style, is always a woman, whether you get the Federation or Klingon versions. And this is before you can play as an Orion Syndicate member working for the Klingons from level 24 onwards. These are your proto-typical green-skinned alien space babes
The Orions are a green skinned humanoid race. They are now part of the Klingon Empire after being conquered... Orion females have very potent pheromones. They are more than capable of seducing males of most species... Due to this pheromone the Orion females are known to be the dominant power in Orion relationships and the organized crime cabal known as the Orion Syndicate.
Lovely. The unique costume option for the Orion females is, essentially, the Princess Leia slave bikini outfit, loincloth and all. The male version can, at least, have a shirtless option as a sort-of balance, but the fact remains the chainmail bikini is beyond ridiculous.

Did I never notice this as a young(er) man and it's always been like this, or is this a particularly egregious example? Let me know in the comments if you've found anything quite as bad in a mainstream MMO.

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