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Gears of War Art Director believes 'it's tough to justify' a female lead

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The Gears of War series has been synonymous with “bro-centered” narrative and action. Heck, Gears of War 3’s entire theme was “brothers to the end.” But could this formula be recreated with female, chainsaw-wielding protagonists? That’s the question that was proposed to Epic Games’ Art Director, Chris Perna, in which the response was simple: “it's tough to justify something like that.”

The interview for the latest edition of the Official Xbox Magazine (OXM), which hit store shelves this past Friday, focused primarily on this matter which has been a major focus in the gaming industry, as woman fight for their deserved rights for gender equality within our entertainment media. In it, Perna described the challenges of creating a female character without creating clichés or stereotypes, which includes creating a characters that rugged like the Gears characters are, but still undoubtedly feminine.

"In Gears you kind of need dirt," Perna explained to OXM in a Gears of War: Judgment interview - read all about it in our next issue, which hits shelves this Friday, 15th February. "If you want to create this attractive, stereotypical, sexy female - a lot of games do that and it's kind of cliché at this point.

"You see the implants and the blonde hair and pants and you roll your eyes - it's almost like the game geek's idealisation of what a woman should be. I think because we didn't go that route we have more believability... we've got more butch characters.

"They're still feminine," he went on. "Anya in Gears 3 comes across as being very feminine, and I think it works."

However, the uproar behind the interview was Perna’s response to a question regarding the possibility of a female in the starring role:

"That's certainly interesting but I don't know," Perna mused. "If you look at what sells, it's tough to justify something like that."

Gears of War: Judgment sets to hit store shelves this March, and will introduce an all new female character that’ll certainly be a focus of attention due to this OXM interview. Are you less inclined to play a video game, specifically as gory and violent as Gears of War, if there’s a female lead? Let us know by commenting below.

Source: [OXM UK]

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Tate Steinlage I write words about video games and sports. Hope you like them.
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