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Originally Posted by Leucrotta
I find it a little nuts with the complaints that the straight romance options for men aren't good enough. Look at the male romance options we are getting-three humans and a moon elf(vampire) Female options include not only Shadowheart-who is obviously designed to be as broadly appealing as possible and has by far the most content out of al the companions so far, but also far greater variety in options-A Githyanki, a Drow, A Tiefling and a Halfling/Gnome/whatever Helia is. No vanilla humans here! Male Romance options don't have a 'short race' option at all, and Tieflings and Drow are hugely popular (Tielfings may have surpassed drow in popularity, but there's a reason why D&D rpgs keep having drow romance options in them) And a Githyanki is just such a bold and unique choice for a romance option in a game.

Heck, if anything the male origin romance options are the ones that are underwhelming. 3 humans and Sparkles the Daywalker. We have come a long way from Anomen in BG II, but still-compare.

Variety isn't the point of discussion here. It's the eye-candy factor. The dreaded "male-gaze" that needs to be stamped out while the female gaze is celebrated and encouraged - see the abundance of Halsin pictures just in this forum, is leading to female companions that, while having variety, are in varieties of ugliness. The male companions, on the other hand, while largely similar in build and race, somehow all fall within the general profile of desirable men looks-wise.

The male companions are higher on the eye candy factor than the females. In fact, someone even found it hilarious that this is the case, so let's not be intellectual dishonest by claiming that having varying degrees of ugliness is somehow easier on the eyes than men that conform largely to conventional notions of male beauty. Can we at least be honest about this?

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Originally Posted by fylimar
Tbh, I'd rather have her than Minsc in the party.

I'd rather have her too, but she'd be in her old age, by now. She won't be the young half-elf we met in the first BG games, unless she's trapped in time or something.

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Get me out of this Hell-Hole!. I can dance on the head of a pin as well. Hey sexy, would ya like to take a look at me diddy? Yes, oh omnipresent authority figure?

You guys are nuts, the interjections in Baldur's Gate are the best, I still say them randomly to this day.

especially, "AHH!Ah hmm-Yes?"

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Originally Posted by Passerby
... unless she's trapped in time or something.
or she is a lvl 18+ druid
Starting at 18th level, the primal magic that you wield causes you to age more slowly. For every 10 years that pass, your body ages only 1 year.

Last edited by Blacas; 21/05/21 07:57 PM.
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Originally Posted by Blacas
Originally Posted by Passerby
... unless she's trapped in time or something.
or she is a lvl 18+ druid
Starting at 18th level, the primal magic that you wield causes you to age more slowly. For every 10 years that pass, your body ages only 1 year.

Well, if that's the case, she can't be a companion then, as she'd be too high level to be bothered with level 4 tadpoled noobs.

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Originally Posted by Passerby
Variety isn't the point of discussion here. It's the eye-candy factor. The dreaded "male-gaze" that needs to be stamped out while the female gaze is celebrated and encouraged - see the abundance of Halsin pictures just in this forum, is leading to female companions that, while having variety, are in varieties of ugliness. The male companions, on the other hand, while largely similar in build and race, somehow all fall within the general profile of desirable men looks-wise.

The male companions are higher on the eye candy factor than the females. In fact, someone even found it hilarious that this is the case, so let's not be intellectual dishonest by claiming that having varying degrees of ugliness is somehow easier on the eyes than men that conform largely to conventional notions of male beauty. Can we at least be honest about this?

Oh for goodness sake. People want to mis-quote me, fine. Yes, I did/do find it hilarious that men are complaining about this, and seem to want a conventional scantily clad Barbie type companion in this game too, when that archetype has been around all along. Men have had all the eye-candy options in games and fantasy illustrations for YEARS. Decades. All one has to do is look around at fantasy book covers, or just about any fantasy or game illustrations in general. While "the male gaze" is very much an art school term, its perspective has become so pervasive, so ingrained in our media that we hardly notice it, and assume it is the norm.

It's only in recent years that game designers have realised that women play RPGs too, that we've always been here, and have started to cater to that. And what is hilarious is that men, who have had their eye candy across the fantasy genre of books/movies/illustration/games all along, for decades, are now complaining about the apparent lack of this eye-candy equality in this one particular game. Why suddenly demand balance when there has never been balance in the fantasy genre, to begin with? Why can't we women have something nice for once and be allowed to enjoy it?

For me as a female, this game and its characters are a breath of fresh air. Female character armour design in this game is also a breath of fresh air.
Also, while this has been a primarily "straight" discussion, I do find Lae'zel and Minthara attractive in different ways, and in fact am surprised that they are dismissed out of hand so easily.

You know what else is getting out of hand? This discussion. Probably. I'm out.

Last edited by Alexandrite; 21/05/21 10:35 PM.
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People demand what they want ...
If you didnt give them gunpowder, someone else would ... and if not, they would shoot anyway. wink

A little advice: Dont take it too personaly, some people dont even bother to read whole post ... nor try to understand it. wink


I liked original spellcasting system more ... frown

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Originally Posted by Alexandrite
I do find Lae'zel and Minthara attractive in different ways, and in fact am surprised that they are dismissed out of hand so easily.

For me it is their.... power.. their dominatrix like attitudes "I will take what is mine". I tend to play similar characters in table top although I have had no time for such joys since moving to Nashville to take a promotion.

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Originally Posted by Alexandrite
Oh for goodness sake. People want to mis-quote me, fine. Yes, I did/do find it hilarious that men are complaining about this, and seem to want a conventional scantily clad Barbie type companion in this game too, when that archetype has been around all along. Men have had all the eye-candy options in games and fantasy illustrations for YEARS. Decades. All one has to do is look around at fantasy book covers, or just about any fantasy or game illustrations in general. While "the male gaze" is very much an art school term, its perspective has become so pervasive, so ingrained in our media that we hardly notice it, and assume it is the norm.

It's only in recent years that game designers have realised that women play RPGs too, that we've always been here, and have started to cater to that. And what is hilarious is that men, who have had their eye candy across the fantasy genre of books/movies/illustration/games all along, for decades, are now complaining about the apparent lack of this eye-candy equality in this one particular game. Why suddenly demand balance when there has never been balance in the fantasy genre, to begin with? Why can't we women have something nice for once and be allowed to enjoy it?

For me as a female, this game and its characters are a breath of fresh air. Female character armour design in this game is also a breath of fresh air.
Also, while this has been a primarily "straight" discussion, I do find Lae'zel and Minthara attractive in different ways, and in fact am surprised that they are dismissed out of hand so easily.

So there we have it, everyone. Someone honest enough to loudly (and gleefully) declare that there is indeed an imbalance in the game regarding which sex gets more enjoyment out of the game on the eye candy front.

And of course, it's accompanied by the "it's my turn" argument. The tit-for-tat argument.

And it's all up to Larian to right the wrongs of the past! To institute eye candy reparations!

Originally Posted by Alexandrite
You know what else is getting out of hand? This discussion. Probably. I'm out.

Maybe don't cackle and be dismissive about issues others have with the game, and it might not come back to bite you in the ass next time? Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

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Originally Posted by Passerby
Maybe don't cackle and be dismissive about issues others have with the game, and it might not come back to bite you in the ass next time? Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Seriously, enough. There's been way too much sniping in this topic in spite of reminders to be civil.


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Originally Posted by Alexandrite
Oh for goodness sake. People want to mis-quote me, fine. Yes, I did/do find it hilarious that men are complaining about this, and seem to want a conventional scantily clad Barbie type companion in this game too, when that archetype has been around all along. Men have had all the eye-candy options in games and fantasy illustrations for YEARS. Decades. All one has to do is look around at fantasy book covers, or just about any fantasy or game illustrations in general. While "the male gaze" is very much an art school term, its perspective has become so pervasive, so ingrained in our media that we hardly notice it, and assume it is the norm.

It's only in recent years that game designers have realised that women play RPGs too, that we've always been here, and have started to cater to that. And what is hilarious is that men, who have had their eye candy across the fantasy genre of books/movies/illustration/games all along, for decades, are now complaining about the apparent lack of this eye-candy equality in this one particular game. Why suddenly demand balance when there has never been balance in the fantasy genre, to begin with? Why can't we women have something nice for once and be allowed to enjoy it?

For me as a female, this game and its characters are a breath of fresh air. Female character armour design in this game is also a breath of fresh air.
Also, while this has been a primarily "straight" discussion, I do find Lae'zel and Minthara attractive in different ways, and in fact am surprised that they are dismissed out of hand so easily.

You know what else is getting out of hand? This discussion. Probably. I'm out.

Pretty much. Although I think a large amount of the perception that there's a lack of apparent male gaze eye candy is due to the fact that we have two female companions out of three right now, and both can really play up the asshole angle quite a bit. Not to mention that all of the prominent female NPCs we've met are basically all villains. Meanwhile Gale is just, uh, Gale, Wyll seems like an all around good guy, Astraion is so edgy that it goes into over the top ham levels, and Halsin (while not a companion) is a rare male damsel in distress and he's a muscle druid. I don't care much for romances, but I can definitely see the appeal in these companions, if only for the sheer novelty factor.

That said, the complaints in this thread are kinda hilarious, because you'd really hate Pathfinder WotR if one were to hold that game's companions to the same standards. While the available straight romances with female characters may be more appealing to the eye in terms of their portrait and artwork, their characterization, is, uh, you're going to be in for a super rude awakening if you're expecting waifus. Like, aside from Arueshalae, people who want to play evil characters are probably going to get a lot more out of WotR.

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Originally Posted by Saito Hikari
While the available straight romances with female characters may be more appealing to the eye in terms of their portrait and artwork, their characterization, is, uh, you're going to be in for a super rude awakening if you're expecting waifus.

Why? Your opinion of male gamers here is that we only want beautiful, simpering females?

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Even if, what is wrong about wanting beautiful, simpering female? O_o
Seeing your avatar, you are also fan of pretty faces youreself. laugh

Its true that in last few years attractive females are somehow dissapearing from videogames (and movies, and series), or at least it seems to me like there is much less of them than in the not-so-far past.
Wonder why ...


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Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Even if, what is wrong about wanting beautiful, simpering female? O_o
Seeing your avatar, you are also fan of pretty faces youreself. laugh

I like pretty faces for sure, though they don't have to be simpering. Viconia was a popular romantic interest for our Son of Bhaal back in the day, and she was no simp. But what I'm sensing from Saito Hikari is the belief that male gamers here want female characters to be both beautiful and simpering, and that we can't handle women that have character. I have no idea why they would think that, given the popularity of Viconia, or other beautiful strong women.

Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
Its true that in last few years attractive females are somehow dissapearing from videogames (and movies, and series), or at least it seems to me like there is much less of them than in the not-so-far past.
Wonder why ...

It's interesting, isn't it? Beautiful men are on display, even in this game, while beautiful women must be kept away from our lustful "male gaze", I guess.

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know. for me as a woman. there are no particularly handsome men in the game. gale is a silly face. although I like his story. Astarion is a lustful rough corpse. and Will is a man with one eye, such a Scandinavian father of the gods. in my first playthrough, all this romance was a pain in my choice. and then I accidentally opened a weaving scene with gale ... and she tried me on with this wizard

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Originally Posted by Passerby
But what I'm sensing from Saito Hikari is the belief that male gamers here want female characters to be both beautiful and simpering, and that we can't handle women that have character.
I didnt get that impesion to be honest ...
It seemed more like if he was complaining (or poiting out the fact, strike out what does not apply) about the fact that all (read as both) female companions have quite simmilar preferences.

I mean ...
If you want Wyll, you have to be pure good ...
If you want Gale, you have to be quite good ...
If you want Astarion, you have to be kinda jerk ...
If you want Lae'zel, you have to be kinda jerk ...
If you want Shadowheart, you have to be kinda jerk ...

So ... it dont seem like lack of character was desired here, more like it was subject of the complaint.
But maybe i get that wrong.

Originally Posted by Passerby
It's interesting, isn't it? Beautiful men are on display, even in this game, while beautiful women must be kept away from our lustful "male gaze", I guess.
I have some theories ...
But i try hard to keep real life politics out of my coments. smile


I liked original spellcasting system more ... frown

Anyway ... i cast Eldritch Blast!
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Originally Posted by Saito Hikari
While the available straight romances with female characters may be more appealing to the eye in terms of their portrait and artwork, their characterization, is, uh, you're going to be in for a super rude awakening if you're expecting waifus.

That's interesting to hear. I like games that buck the "pretty waifu" stereotype, though it's apparently much safer to buck the "waifu" part (as you're saying WotR does) than the "pretty" part (and trying to buck both is quite risky, as we're seeing in this game!).

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Originally Posted by RagnarokCzD
If you want Shadowheart, you have to be kinda jerk ...

That is not true, SH is nowadays my goto romance and I mostly play really good characters. She approves of quite a lot good deeds - and almost always, when you avoid bloodshed by talking your way out. With my good playstyle, I find getting approval with her easier than even with Wyll.

About attractive females: As I said before, most people are probably looking for some eyecandy in games, so it would be in Larians interest, to give the straight males and the not so straight females something to look at. If Karlach is available, I'll probably romance her, no matter how she looks, but I for example really liked her look as it is now in the games.
There are some really attractive females in the game, like Alfira, Kagha, the advicer of the abducted duke for example - sadly none of them are to become companions (maybe they will later on, but I won't get my hopes up).
I must say, that I'm genrally not that impressed with our current companions, they are a bit too edgy and too much special snowflakes for me.


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That is certainly at least odd ... i get disaproval from Shadow every single time i offered my help to someone. O_o

I honestly dont quite understand what people like about Alfira ...
Both in her looks, and personality. :-/
Personaly i find her anoying, whiny and stupidly naive (or naively stupid? ... something like that). :-/
Her face is fine i gues ... but right in the same settlement there is at least few other Tieflings who looket better.

Alfira could work as perfect example for why we do need to set ears separately from face, just like we do with horns ...
She would look thousand times better if she dont have this sheep-like canvas(?) sticked to her head. frown


I liked original spellcasting system more ... frown

Anyway ... i cast Eldritch Blast!
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Originally Posted by middle tab
know. for me as a woman. there are no particularly handsome men in the game. gale is a silly face. although I like his story. Astarion is a lustful rough corpse. and Will is a man with one eye, such a Scandinavian father of the gods. in my first playthrough, all this romance was a pain in my choice. and then I accidentally opened a weaving scene with gale ... and she tried me on with this wizard

Yeah, Felicia Day provided similar feedback. She didn't see any of the male companions as particularly attractive. She called Gale "a Bad Burt Reynolds look alike.." or something. She mentioned that Astarion came off as "far more creepy than sexy".

I honestly don't see any of the companions as being particularly attractive except maybe Shadowheart - and she has a pretty standoffish personality.

Overall I think this is a good thing. It partially subverts the expectation that companions are there to be a "all you can eat sex smorgasbord" for players.

But here is where things get dicey - is it a problem that everyone is bisexual in Faerun (or at least all the companions), because the subtext suggest the opinion that sexuality isn't a fixed thing. To be sure, some people are bisexuals, but most people are either gay or straight - unless things work differently in the forgotten realms.

However, this also could be sending the message that sexuality is irrelevant! Which is pretty woke and makes a compelling point as well. That it is counterproductive to build characters based around a sexual orientation.

Or is it even much simpler than that - where the devs know that players are conditioned to have the expectation that they can romance companions and they simply said "Ok, have fun, they will sleep with anyone...literally a heartbeat is the requirement and maybe not even that in the case of Astarion - knock yourselves out"


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