I deleted my most recent attempt last night. I just don’t like the aesthetics of the human females were given by ANet. I’m not talking about the boob plate or revealing clothes. I can like that if tweaked right. No, the reason I can’t play one is the goddamned idling animation.
To be a bit honest here, I think that GW2 human females aren’t automatically sex objects just because of that idle pose animation. In fact, I think it’s the most trivial part of the perceived objectification of human females.
I’m assuming you’re referring to the idle pose on the one in which the human female tilts her head up and swings her hips casually from one side to another. You’re probably also referring to other idling poses that the female humans have.
I understand that you’re a bit put off as the idle pose appears to make the PC look ‘sexy’, ‘slutty’, ‘whore ish’, etc etc, But to be honest, that pose is not what makes female humans off-putting in terms of sexual objectification. You mention that the female humans you take seriously are the ones that are played by people you know personally. So why don’t you view their characters as off-putting sex objects?
Their idle pose doesn’t define what kind of character they are, their general aesthetic look does, to a certain extent (hair, physique, armor, pretty colours) and the personality of this character (if they RP). I feel as if it’s a bit unfair to say that GW2 human females are instantly sex toys once they are created just because of this idle pose. Sexual objectification is the act of treating a person merely as an instrument of sexual pleasure, making them a "sex object". Designing human females to act in a way that some perceive to be over sexual is not making them a sexual object. I can be a female that likes to be openly sexual in terms of behavior and how I present myself, but that doesn’t mean that I’m an instrument of sexual pleasure. Similarly, just because your character swings her hips and pushes her boobs out, doesn’t mean that she’s only for the drooling dudes at their screen with their 2 inches out.
TLDR: Claiming that female humans in GW2 are sex objects and are the victims of sexism in ANet because of their idle pose is a bit unfair. I totally understand if it puts you off, everyone to their own tastes, but it is not because of sexism, or that human females are treated as a sex toy.
EDIT: I want to acknowledge here that I’m also not satisfied with the human females in GW2. Personally, I don’t like how their faces look. But that’s my personal tastes. Does it mean that ANet is sexist for not making mature, weathered looking female warriors? No.
Just an opinion here, feel free to try to offer another POV, I’m open to different perspectives :)
I’m on mobile at the moment so I can’t address this as broadly as I want to. I hate typing on an iPhone. You have good, valid points, and I’ll address at least one.
For you, the idling animation is a trivial offense among many. For me, it’s a big fucking deal.
As I’ve mentioned, I don’t mind revealing armor that much, I just wish there was more parity between genders and races (female asura and charr really get the short end of the stick here). I can dress human females to where even the FLDS would approve of the lack of skin showing. Or I can make a human female look like she’s auditioning for a role as a Jubilee showgirl. I can go either extreme but I cannot ever get away from that, “Lemme do this sexy stretch!” animation.
On a strictly personal level, I find it mildly immersion-breaking. A human female I’m playing may be on a battlefield, or a scene of great death and suffering (like LA right now) and then she does her idling loop and I’m thinking, “She’s not taking this seriously.”
That, to a degree, also effects how I look at GW2 human females on an interpersonal level. My perception of them as having been designed to appeal to a particular segment of the player base colors the way I look at them. That’s a personal problem. Knowing a player behind the avatar lets me overlook that. Again, a personal problem.
I would love to see this change, but I’m not betting on it. Until then, I’m not going to even try making another human female. I have Marcella for my bank mule and dress-up doll and that’s good enough for me.