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Beauty, does it really matter?

Game Spinning Top 2024/05/14 15:30

Regarding the character design of the game characters, it has become more and more noisy over the years.

It is undeniable that with the development of the zeitgeist and the influx of more and more female gamers, game manufacturers have indeed changed their thinking about character design. The straight ball design that is too "flattering" to a certain group is no longer the mainstream, and it is more important to be real and fresh.

Compared with the spicy fresh people who have raised the banner of "there are men don't play", console and PC players seem to have no objection to this. Today, when conventional beauties and handsome guys are becoming more and more rare, the tearing and controversy between player groups are intensifying, and it has become a new fashion to compete for the right to speak with contributed sales.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

Last month, the new ARPG "Sword Star" launched by South Korean game developer Shift Up led by Kim Hyung-tae detonated global discussions due to related topics, and it is still hot.

Although the specific sales volume has not been officially announced, the game has topped the Amazon game sales list in the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan and other places as soon as it was released, and "Sword Star" on the PS store has also topped the sales charts in many countries. At the same time, player reputation has also continued to rise, with the MC player rating stable at 93, and won the PlayStation Players' Choice Award for April.

Interestingly, two weeks after its release, the sexy character of the heroine Eve is still the focus of debate.

On the one hand, overseas media frequently criticize, believing that the protagonist in "Sword Star" is an "overly sexual puppet", too much catering to men, and not paying enough attention to the current emerging user groups; On the other hand, there is a large number of players who pre-order support, calling for real money to let the industry understand what players like.

As the discussion continued, I calmed down and experienced the game from the perspective of a male player. Is the sexy element the core selling point of the game? Is the conflict between pleasing players, self-expression, and conforming to the prevailing values of the times necessarily irreconcilable?

The fire of this product is worth playing.

An exemplary "latecomer"

Let's take a look at the quality of the game first.

Starting from "Pinocchio's Lies" last year, Korean manufacturers have changed the stereotype of kimchi online games, and suddenly have the ambition to make stand-alone masterpieces on consoles and PCs. But after all, as a latecomer, it can be clearly seen that there are many multi-dimensional references to popular products. This makes some players think that Korean games have a strong sense of stitching, and feel that their style is not high.

However, "Sword Star" also imitates many predecessors, and there is still an experience that exceeds my expectations.

For example, while the game's worldview and story may not seem so new, and there are obviously a lot of references and homages to NieR: Automata, the excellent art design, audiovisual quality, and detail filling make Sword Star an extraordinary sense of immersion. If my initial expectation was just that beautiful girls fight monsters, then the portrayal of the apocalyptic world has become the part that moves me the most now.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

Like "NieR", "Sword Star" also focuses on a world after a devastating catastrophe for humanity, but the better graphics quality and interactive details that fill the scene make the game have a brilliant atmospheric portrayal.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

Telephone booths, rail trains, pianos, guitars and other products of the old era outline a sense of realism, while cyberpunk characters full of prosthetic elements and bizarre parasitic monsters show a strong sci-fi flavor. The remnants of human civilization, nature, and alien life form interplay each other, giving the game a desolate yet timeless quality.

Perhaps my favorite moment in Sword Star is unlocking camps as you progress. Vending machines, record players, sleeping bags, a pot of steaming food, and a chair, sitting under the dim sky, listening to ethereal music, thinking about the slim future of mankind, but there is a sense of warmth and healing.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

In addition, the characters in "Sword Star" are far from the stylized ones I expected. In addition to her outstanding appearance, the personality setting of the main character, Eve, is actually very pleasing. She will be very interested in cans that she has never seen before, and she will also be haunted by the mention of "dull hairstyle" by others, and the seriousness of seeing everything is really cute.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

Lily and Adam, the two "tool people" who assist the protagonists, also have outstanding daily exchanges and highlight moments. Not to mention the Centrino, which doesn't have many scenes, basically captured the hearts of players as soon as it appeared, and was even asked by players to make it a controllable character.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?Very cute threesome

It can be said that Kim Hyung-tae, the art god, really led the team to play to its greatest strengths, so that the visual impact lasted almost from beginning to end. So even if there is nothing particularly innovative in the gameplay process, "Sword Star" still forms a smooth experience drive.

The general content of the game, to put it bluntly, is nothing more than adding some painless puzzle solving and text collection to the run, using platform jumping and shooting elements to do a series, nesting a larger open map between the levels, and then arranging some errand branches. But the overall arrangement of the game is mature enough, whether it is the amount of content filling or the rhythm arrangement, it seems to be relaxed and natural, and it will not make people uncomfortable and boring, which is rare.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?It's hard not to string this to "Dead Space"

As for the other major part of the game, combat and development, it can be called the culmination of stitching. Of course, this is a compliment, and it can be seen that "Sword Star" is fully integrating the advantages of the current mainstream action games.

Not only the basic light and heavy attack derivative moves, but also the "wolf" style knife fight and the precise dodge with witch time are definitely not missing. Even for knife fighting and dodging, the game also has two corresponding resources to release beta skills and burst skills. Coupled with the transformation system "Swift Mode" unlocked in the middle of the game, the overall planning of the battle is definitely rich and the path is clear.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

It can be seen that the production team is afraid that the players will not think that the combat interaction is not diverse enough, and additionally gave the enemy two kinds of attacks that will emit blue light and purple light prompts, so as to correspond to the countermeasures of flashing and repelling these test operations and reactions. The triggering method of the circle + front and rear joysticks is probably similar to the thrill of launching "Recognition" in "Wolf".

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?Proficiency in flashing and knockback is required

So while I was impressed by the comprehensive integration of many action game elements in "Sword Star", I was also attracted by the solid feel, gorgeous move design and execution performance. The fast-paced interaction between friends and foes in the boss battle, as well as the refreshing knife fighting and countermeasures, all made me unbelievable that the team had such good ACT skills.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?Dimensional slash fight!

At the same time, "Sword Star" did not forget to leave enough space for character construction.

The game uses two simple and easy-to-understand concepts of auxiliary spine and components to shape different genres of character construction. What Critical Attack Flow, Beta Skill Flow, and Stealth Flow, although they can't make any essential changes in the battle, they can indeed play a different embellishment. Several large skill trees delicately divide the character performance into specific divisions, so that the player's growth is more realistic.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

All in all, I'm inclined to rate Sword Star as a solid, mature latecomer with an unusually impressive ability to integrate with existing gameplay on the market.

In this era when it is difficult to make fundamental innovations, "Sword Star" is undoubtedly a product that is very suitable for inexperienced R&D teams to learn from. It knows what it wants, and it knows what it has, and in doing so, it makes for a smooth and silky experience in a limited space. The result is a game that not only looks sexy, but also plays sexy.

What exactly is the use of sexy babes?

As the team's first original console masterpiece, "Sword Star" has a considerable degree of completion. I can also pat my chest and say that even despite Kim Hyung-tae's "greasy sister" temptation, this is still a good work that I enjoy most of the time.

But if "Sword Star" loses this selling point on the skin, will its sales and attention be greatly affected?

I think the answer is yes, or in the current somewhat special market atmosphere, the nine-headed sexy beauty of "Sword Star" is a bit "rebellious", which can obviously greatly boost the attention of the product and make the publicity and distribution work twice the result with half the effort.

After the explosion of "NieR: Automata", many players said that the game completely relied on the "cyber ass". I was very unimpressed with this statement at the time, because it seemed to me that Neil had a deeper merit. For example, the refreshing action battles, the music that makes people cry, the plot full of philosophical charm, and the embellishment of meta elements...... This is the key to becoming a masterpiece.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?The character design of 2B is a classic

But over the years, with the sales of "Nier" rising year by year and the hot market response of "Sword Star", I feel more and more that the appearance of the character and the corresponding character creation can indeed grab the attention of players in the first place and lead them to better feel the connotation of the product.

Such examples are not uncommon. Isn't the domestic indie game "Bloodthirsty Seal" also a typical example of a hardcore ACT that can't get enough to eat, and as a result, it is very popular with "scorching skin". The nosebleed skin will not dissolve the core gameplay of the product, but can allow more people to participate in the groping of the hardcore action experience, and even monetize to improve the tolerance of many novices to higher difficulties.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

Of course, you could say that this approach to attention is a bit vulgar, but in today's community atmosphere, the appeal of a character's appearance has even evolved further than it used to be.

Secondly, in my opinion, sexy beauties also build a buffer zone for the presentation of gameplay quality to a large extent, which can further detonate the word-of-mouth effect.

For example, many "Sword Star" players like to say "I know what I bought because of it" - when everyone pays for the role, there are not so many unrealistic expectations for the gameplay.

In this way, the gameplay of the game is particularly solid and the design is sincere. Expectation management is also an increasingly important topic in product promotion in recent years, so isn't "beauty" a good way to quickly attract attention but keep players rational in their expectations?

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

Of course, whether a product can be recognized in the end depends on how many catties and taels its core gameplay is worth, otherwise there is a high probability that it will suffer a backlash. Moreover, the concept of beauty is often presented differently in different people's minds. The success of "Sword Star" also lies in its serious presentation of the beauty that the team understands.

You can dislike Kim Hyung-tae's style, you can feel that the characters are too greasy, not advanced, soulless, and lack memory points. But when I look at the well-designed costumes, hairstyles, and ponytails that can be adjusted in length, and when I see the character interactions and worldviews that are carefully composed, I feel that the team is taking the characters seriously enough. This kind of seriousness completely gives "Sword Star" a self-consistent beauty and gives the character a soul.

Does the game Gyro, Beauty, really matter?

"Sword Star" may be a concentrated manifestation of the revenge consumption of some players, and we should not directly characterize the market trend it represents. However, whether the traditional beauty role, or the role with a certain degree of attractiveness, should occupy a dominant position in the product and what role it can play, it is obvious that it should be re-faced and rationally considered by the current manufacturers.

Female gamers don't love it either?

Finally, I would like to say a few words about it, but I often feel that my perception of the player community is inevitably a bit stereotypical.

In addition to vertical categories such as harem and otome based on gender preferences, most of the time users of different genders and orientations still have to eat in the same pot - everyone's preferences may not be so separated.

Male gamers are bound to party for the long legs of Sword Star, while women must be offended by games like Sword Star?

Not necessarily.

Just as many male gamers are attracted to the masculine charm exuded by characters like Dante and Kuiye, I can also see female users expressing their love for Eve in "Sword Star" on Xiaohongshu. I believe that both men and women should have their own appreciation for the power and beauty of the body and soul of different characters.

But in this era of openness, we are sometimes unprecedentedly narrow-minded. Because of some skeptical voices, they are engaged in a protracted struggle for the right to speak. Maybe it's because of gender, maybe it's because of something else.

Is mainstream commercial work really more inclined to "please men"? Do female gamers often find something to play? Can female gamers accept the character design of Sword Star? What does the "anti-political correctness" banner on "Sword Star" mean in this era?

If you happen to read this article, you might as well leave some thoughts.

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