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The egregious error of female armor designs

As a woman that grew up playing games, it is very easy to notice the different of mindset costume and character designers use for male and female characters. Male characters are often in full bulky armor, looking intimidating and ready to throw down with the toughest enemy. On the other hands, while there are some exceptions like Metroid Prime’s heroine Samus Aran, female characters’ armors seem to suffer from shortage of materials. Some of the most sinful design is notoriously known as the “bikini armor” that is so common place in video games because the developers want to cater to their male demographic that female characters are presented more as the “eyecandy” than amazing warrior.

Even in case where the female character is presented with more clothes in movies, there is the common trope of the “breast armor” that seem to have the appearance of practicality while still showcasing the feminine curves. However, it is not as practical as many thinks since the divet, the area in the armor between the breast, would press itself into the sternum and breastbone if the woman fall in battle; acting as effectively as a spear ready to crush their bones at anytime. If you want to find practical yet still aesthetically pleasing armor, Game of Thrones have done their research as shown by Brienne of Tarth, a fully covered chest armor that looks no different than what men would wear. For character and costume designers, there should be consideration for practically, and not just visual presentation.


  1. kkeyserp wrote:

    This pattern bothers me to no end. Yet another reason I don’t play video games, they aren’t designed for me! Also video games make me think about my entertainment and I don’t want to have to work to be lazy. Anyway, I’m currently working on two projects that embody this problem and there’s so much material I can pull from. It’s a little overwhelming how male centered our world is designed.

    Friday, April 27, 2018 at 8:25 am | Permalink
  2. jcruz12 wrote:

    I agree that having an armor that is shape for showing off the female breasts is impractical and physically painful if the female characters were to land on their armor. However, at the same time, I think that this way of designing female armor is very creative. I mean, there’s always flat armor and plain old clothing that characters normally equip; they’re just plain dull and doesn’t really reveal their personality. I say let female armors be designed in any way, as long as they describe the female characters’ personality.

    Friday, April 27, 2018 at 11:33 am | Permalink
  3. amilstei wrote:

    This is a problem that has annoyed me to no end. I also hate it when people defend it as “style,” when it’s just objectifying. It would be different if there were equally revealing male armor options, but I’d be hard pressed to find even one example.

    Saturday, April 28, 2018 at 7:54 pm | Permalink