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Default Fantasy Armour and Lady Bits @ Mad Art Labs

December 19th, 2011, 21:17
Here's a different article courtesy of Ovenall, who sends in Fantasy Armour and Lady Bits, which is written by an actual armourer. The article has plenty of pictures - from fantasy to historical - and is written with a sense of humour. It's hard to take a quote, because the images form the basis of the discussion but it's worth a read.

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December 19th, 2011, 21:17
That was a nice piece of writing with good illustrations to make his point clear. Although I like the female body I do think the way it's armored in most RPG games is just very weird.
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December 19th, 2011, 22:08
The most interesting part to me was the observation that a woman would be likely to crack her sternum if she fell face down wearing a breast-conforming breastplate. Ouch.

Of course, fantasy is fantasy. Even a moderate sword wound would likely incapacitate even the strongest, healthiest man in the real world very quickly. A slice to a major muscle in a leg would be enough to make him fall over and it would all end soon after that. Grisly to think about.
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December 20th, 2011, 03:40
Meh - so much of it is insane already. A 12 foot tall hill giant would weigh something like 1600 pounds. Incasing yourself in steel wouldn't do much against that kind of momentum. If it hits you, you're going to STAY hit.
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December 20th, 2011, 04:55
I've always been a fan of the "sensible" approach. I don't necessarily want 100% "realism" when it comes to armor, but I do appreciate at least some form of believability - as in, what a person wears in a fantasy game could conceivably function as "armor." Chainmail bikinis and "lingerie armor" are just so over-the-top and absurd that it definitely affects how immersed I am in a gameworld when I come across such things, and it makes female characters seem like shallow caricatures spawned from a basement-dweller's fantasy instead of feeling like "real" people. This is why I enjoy the approach taken in games such as Skyrim and Dragon Age: Origins; the majority of female armor is still feminine and attractive on female characters, yet it comes with a sensible believability factor. Everyone's tastes are different, and not everyone cares as much as others about believability and immersion, but this is the approach I personally prefer.
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December 20th, 2011, 07:03
Originally Posted by Zloth View Post
A 12 foot tall hill giant would weigh something like 1600 pounds. Incasing yourself in steel wouldn't do much against that kind of momentum.
Encasing yourself in a full set of enchanted daedric armour certainly helps though.

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December 20th, 2011, 12:14
Originally Posted by bjon045 View Post
Encasing yourself in a full set of enchanted daedric armour certainly helps though.
And he is speaking from experience!
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December 20th, 2011, 12:38
I'm trying hard to care about this issue and….. I fail.
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December 20th, 2011, 20:39
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
I've always been a fan of the "sensible" approach. I don't necessarily want 100% "realism" when it comes to armor, but I do appreciate at least some form of believability - as in, what a person wears in a fantasy game could conceivably function as "armor." Chainmail bikinis and "lingerie armor" are just so over-the-top and absurd that it definitely affects how immersed I am in a gameworld when I come across such things, and it makes female characters seem like shallow caricatures spawned from a basement-dweller's fantasy instead of feeling like "real" people. This is why I enjoy the approach taken in games such as Skyrim and Dragon Age: Origins; the majority of female armor is still feminine and attractive on female characters, yet it comes with a sensible believability factor. Everyone's tastes are different, and not everyone cares as much as others about believability and immersion, but this is the approach I personally prefer.
See I do not get this logic. Shooting fireballs out of ones hands seems quite believable to you but chain mail bikinis (which exist in RL) do not. ANY fantasy game requires a separation of belief to be immersed in I don't see how one can separate one vs another.

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December 20th, 2011, 21:01
Have you read the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett ?

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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December 20th, 2011, 21:17
I never really buy the whole "The world has magic in it so nothing has to be remotely realistic" argument. Fantasy worlds can still be realistc within the confines of the world that they create.

The article isn't arguing for realism though, they make it clear that they don't really care about that. They are arguing more for consistancy, such that men aren't all encased head to toe in full plate while the women are somehow getting the exact same protection from metal bikinis.

Originally Posted by Harlequin View Post
See I do not get this logic. Shooting fireballs out of ones hands seems quite believable to you but chain mail bikinis (which exist in RL) do not. ANY fantasy game requires a separation of belief to be immersed in I don't see how one can separate one vs another.
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December 20th, 2011, 21:33
Originally Posted by fadedc View Post
I never really buy the whole "The world has magic in it so nothing has to be remotely realistic" argument. Fantasy worlds can still be realistc within the confines of the world that they create.

The article isn't arguing for realism though, they make it clear that they don't really care about that. They are arguing more for consistancy, such that men aren't all encased head to toe in full plate while the women are somehow getting the exact same protection from metal bikinis.
This is pretty much exactly what I would have responded with . The whole "But it's fantasy!!" argument can be used far too easily to justify all sorts of crazy or illogical ideas - World consistency and believability is the key.
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December 20th, 2011, 21:43
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
World consistency and believability is the key.
I agree.

This book http://www.amazon.com/City-Dreaming-…4410008&sr=8-1 displays one of the imho far most weid fantsy worlds I've ever seen - but all in all this world is very believable - in itself !
This novel is written so that absolutely everything makes sense - in this world - but only in this very special world !

The "inner logic" is imho the most important thing of *any* created world !

Because otherwise the reader feels cheated. Sort of.

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December 20th, 2011, 22:09
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
This is pretty much exactly what I would have responded with . The whole "But it's fantasy!!" argument can be used far too easily to justify all sorts of crazy or illogical ideas - World consistency and believability is the key.
That's just it. In said fantasy world IT IS consistent. In said world a chain mail bikini gives the same protection as full plate. As long as that stays as a set 'rule' within that world what is the issue? You are defeating your own argument IMO.

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December 20th, 2011, 22:38
Originally Posted by Harlequin View Post
In said world a chain mail bikini gives the same protection as full plate.
You realize how ridiculous that sounds, right? That is exactly what I mean by a lack of "believability." If you like almost naked women in your games then fine, there's nothing wrong with that and you are free to enjoy that aspect of a game. But don't try to somehow justify it as "believable and consistent…because it's fantasy!!! The stats and rules say a chainmail bikini gives the same protection as full plate, therefore it's logical!!" That's just absurd. Just say "I enjoy the …scenery …of chainmail bikinis, so I like having it in my games and the lack of realism/believability doesn't bother me" and leave it at that.
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December 20th, 2011, 22:54
Yeah I don't buy that. When it comes to magic, fantasy worlds setup rules for how it works. People can't just pull fire out of the air whenever they want to, the world decides how it works, who can do it, what resources and training it requires, etc. This is very different then just putting women in chainmail bikinis because it looks hot and saying that it provides the same protection and then not justifying it at all.

Originally Posted by Harlequin View Post
That's just it. In said fantasy world IT IS consistent. In said world a chain mail bikini gives the same protection as full plate. As long as that stays as a set 'rule' within that world what is the issue? You are defeating your own argument IMO.
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December 20th, 2011, 23:23
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
You realize how ridiculous that sounds, right? That is exactly what I mean by a lack of "believability." If you like almost naked women in your games then fine, there's nothing wrong with that and you are free to enjoy that aspect of a game. But don't try to somehow justify it as "believable and consistent…because it's fantasy!!! The stats and rules say a chainmail bikini gives the same protection as full plate, therefore it's logical!!" That's just absurd. Just say "I enjoy the …scenery …of chainmail bikinis, so I like having it in my games and the lack of realism/believability doesn't bother me" and leave it at that.
So you are saying its ok accept magic plate is more protective then non-magic plate but magic girly armor can't be more protective then a non-magic one? O.o

And before you go all 'we are not talking about magic items' on me, yes we are. Most fantasy girly armor in most artwork and games is glowing or clearly very high craftsmanship implying it is special on some level, magic or otherwise.

All that said who says physics work the same way in this fantasy world as it does out own? Thus lack of coverage may not equate to lack of protection in said world. Either case again as long as it is CONSISTENT (your own words) it seems to me you are just splitting hairs.

Plus, as a guy I have NO ISSUE looking at hot girls in skimpy armor. I can suspend my disbelief skimpy armor is protecting the girl just as I can the magic fire is harming my PC. But if you rather cover the girls up in the name of 'realism' and wish to forgo eye candy, well, that's another topic. *chuckle*

On a side note, I have NO issue with 'realism' in a game, I generally am on the 'realism' bandwagon but some things I rather have fluff over substance, and this is one of them.

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December 21st, 2011, 00:14
Originally Posted by Harlequin View Post
Plus, as a guy I have NO ISSUE looking at hot girls in skimpy armor. I can suspend my disbelief skimpy armor is protecting the girl just as I can the magic fire is harming my PC. But if you rather cover the girls up in the name of 'realism' and wish to forgo eye candy, well, that's another topic. *chuckle*
I completely understand that, as I said earlier. However, that's looking at it from your perspective instead of the character's perspective, which is fine; of course the idea of eye-candy is great to most on paper - and visually . However, I tend to look at it from a female character's perspective in order to "bring the game world to life," and I imagine most females in these worlds would feel quite ridiculous and sleazy wearing next to nothing and would not willingly objectify themselves as "eye-candy" for male entertainment - it's just not believable to me that women would want to portray themselves this way when they also want to be taken seriously as warriors at the same time. This isn't coming from a "feminist/woman's rights" point of view either; I just want a game world to be populated with characters (male and female) that feel like they could be "real" people. Besides, sometimes a woman who is more covered up is more attractive than someone who is almost naked because of the sense of mystery - the tease of just a little skin makes you want to see even more . Classiness and self-respect can also be an attractive trait.

I like to immerse myself into a game world when it comes to RPGs, and I realize not everyone cares as much as others about "believability" from either a practical/functionality perspective or character "role-playing" perspective. It's just my personal preference to have armor that can conceivably function as "armor" from a visual standpoint in order to make the game world feel and look more believable, and I don't buy the argument that "It's fantasy, and the highly revealing, practically nude armor is "magical" and offers a protective ward somehow." Using "fantasy" as justification is a lazy explanation for something that just doesn't make sense from anything other than an eye-candy perspective, and I find game worlds that strive for sensibility over visual spectacles more engaging.

Originally Posted by Harlequin View Post
On a side note, I have NO issue with 'realism' in a game, I generally am on the 'realism' bandwagon but some things I rather have fluff over substance, and this is one of them.
This is all i wanted to hear . There's nothing wrong with certain things not being 100% realistic if it is a personal preference to have fluff over substance in certain areas. But that's the point I'm getting at - it is fluff over substance, and I personally prefer substance and believable female characters, and I don't buy "It's fantasy!" as a legitimate excuse to do anything in a game world that strives for some form of believability.

There can be a time for skimpy armor and have it make sense within the context of a game's fiction; Skyrim has a great example of this with the Forsworn. The Forsworn are a barbarian-like people who live entirely off the land with limited to no access to armor forges or smithing tools. This, combined with their cultural traits, adds the "believability" factor to the skimpy armor. The "world consistency" comes from the fact that Forsworn males also wear minimal, simplistic armor; if males from this culture were wearing elaborate full plate armor while the females did not, then it wouldn't be believable or consistent anymore. This is an example that can satisfy both the "realism/believability" crowd and the eye-candy crowd - proving that sometimes you can have your cake and eat it too
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December 21st, 2011, 00:37
Just to summarize what Nevarine says, there is nothing wrong with saying you'd rather have hot scantily clad women then realism. I'm sure lots of people feel that way, and I don't always mind it myself. It's just ridiculous to use the whole "in a world with magic nobody can complain about realism" argument or to claim it's somehow consistant for men to wear full plate and women to wear metal bikinis in the same world because clearly a wizard is responsible so everything is ok. Or that somehow the laws of physics of the universe, despite being the same as ours in every other way, somehow causes cleavage to generate forcefields. If you like it, then it's fine to just accept that it doesn't make sense and move on. I do that with plenty of other things in games.
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December 21st, 2011, 01:57
I have someone in my D&D group who whines about this all the time, makes me want to slap him upside the head. He's trying to make himself look "enlightened" in front of the females of the group. Personally, I'll take the chainmail (or even platemail) bikini over "sensible" or realistic armor any day!

I cant help it, female characters can look incredibly sexy and cool in a set of armor that's half there. "realism" be damned!
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