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Fallout 3 Forgot the Female Protagonist
Editorial - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Mon 10 May 2010, 20:13:31Tags: Bethesda Softworks; Fallout 3
... and tainted all larping possibilities in the process, such is the conclusion of Gamasutra.
Speaking of player-directed characterization, the game universe did not seem to have been constructed to account for my protagonist being female. Women sort-of flirted with my character; men treated her with male-to-male-style aggression.
It's possible to imagine an interesting version of the wasteland in which most women are lesbians, but pretty clearly the game world hadn't developed this way intentionally. The whole time I was playing, the social interactions kept reminding me that being female was the "other" choice, the marked choice, the non-default; the thing they didn't bother to write for or program until last.
Matters could be much worse. At least Fallout 3 didn't, like Heavy Rain, establish the sole female protagonist with a leeringly detailed near-rape scene and then go on exploiting her sexual risk for the entire rest of the narrative. So at least the female option isn't written in there with the obvious intention of providing amusement to men; it's just equally obviously an afterthought.
Let's be silent for a minute, and mourn the wasted potential.
Spotted at: GB