These are topics which are, separately, and not literally, very close to my heart. Nine times out of ten they are a gigantic embarrassment for all involved, when combined.
This (should I say “these”?) has been a problem for over 10 years. I’m not quite sure how I would research the matter, but I first remember gratuitous video game boob-jubbling in the original Soul Calibur (1998), on Dreamcast. Taki and Sophitia both had unreasonably large and fluid bazooms, prone to manic flailing at the slightest nudge of the controls. For those of you not intimately familiar with the game, I refer to controlling the character as a whole – you did not control their breasts directly.
The amount of thought which has been put into animating their mammaries is astounding. Obviously the developers spent a good share of time on this, trying to draw further attention to these disproportionate features by modeling them thusly. Given that video games are becoming increasingly realistic, one would think that if nothing else, funbags* could be provided with a slightly more realistic physics model. I’m not an expert on bosoms, but I do see them, under clothes, of course, on a fairly regular basis. Given the resources of a large software company, I’m pretty sure I could guide animators and modelers to something less preposterous. Keep them large if you must, boys, but tone down the jubbling by a factor of four.
The impetus for this post was Rachel, from Ninja Gaiden. I was giving Ninja Gaiden Sigma a play-through, and one of the additions to this, final version of the game is the ability to play Rachel, a comically buxom ‘fiend hunter’. We are led to believe that she’s a powerful warrior, and has been slaughtering demons with her massive (no, not breasticles) two-handed war hammer for some time now. Somehow, despite the requisite years of training, each of her bazoongas is the size of her head. Bigger, even. And boy, do they have a mind of their own. After spurring her into a run and a few somersaults (in her high heals and shockingly impractical bondage attire, naturally), releasing the controls has most of her stop moving immediately. Her flesh pillows**, however, keep wobbling about preposterously for the count of four. FOUR SECONDS. One-one-thousand. Two-one-thousand. Three-one-thousand. Four-one-thousand.
I don’t find this appealing in any way. It makes me powerfully uncomfortable. I no longer want to participate in this past-time. Put those things away, you might hurt someone.
Japan is especially to blame for this, though North American developers are definitely not without fault. I can only think of two instances of a video game heroine not being so comically endowed/cursed. The first being Beyond Good and Evil, the second The Longest Journey and its sequel.
Yes, the male characters in most mainstream games are unrealistically modeled. The gene-mod marines in Gears of War, Zangief’s comic-book musculature, or even Ryu Hayabusa’s PVC-clad buff ninja physique are well outside the bounds of reality. What you don’t see, however, are their fleshy fourteen inch dongs sloshing around in their trousers whenever they take a step.
Thank god for that.
*I’m running out of boob synonyms already.
**I really need to wrap this post up.