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Lara Croft is so much better than EVE from Stellar Blade – Reader’s Feature-GameCentral-Entertainment – Metro

A reader compares the OG Lara Croft to the main character from Stellar Blade, and hopes the new Tomb Raider will learn lessons from both.

Lara Croft is so much better than EVE from Stellar Blade – Reader’s Feature-GameCentral-Entertainment – Metro

What can EVE learn from Lara? (Sony Interactive Entertainment/Embracer Group)

A reader compares the OG Lara Croft to the main character from Stellar Blade, and hopes the new Tomb Raider will learn lessons from both.

I have to admit, I thought Stellar Blade would be the catalyst for a new GamerGate style culture war within gaming, as right wing fans tried to champion its highly sexualised portrayal of women. I’m please to see though, that this has not really been the case. There was that ridiculous petition, and I’m sure plenty of people are angry about it, in both directions, but I think that it’s sexualisation is just so damn weird that it’s prevented things from getting out of control.

I’m what I assume to be about two-thirds through the game at the moment and it is a really good action game. A bit too easy – I’m beginning to think I should have put it on hard, because I’m not really having to dig deep into the game’s impressive repertoire of moves at the moment – but judged purely on gameplay this is good stuff and absolutely worthy of being a PlayStation exclusive.

The reason I call it weird though is that the outfits main character EVE wears are so ludicrously oversexualised it almost seems like a joke. She’s not dressed sexy, she just looks like moths have been at her clothes cupboard. What makes it even stranger is that despite dressing like a stripper she talks and acts exactly as you’d expect a supersolider (which is what she basically is, as far as I understand) to: very no nonsense and to the point.

EVE may look sexy, from the developer’s point of view, but she doesn’t act like it and so far nobody in the game has commented on what she looks like. If only she’d been sensibly dressed nobody would’ve said a thing about the game – other than she’s kind of boring as a character.

She’s absolutely not another Bayonetta, who owns her sexuality and acts exactly as you’d expect from what she looks and dresses like. She may be a bit over-the-top for some people, but I’ve heard very few complaints about her over the years and I think it’s fair to say she’s one of the strongest female characters in games, literally and figuratively.

Bayonetta isn’t a realistic character though, and she’s not supposed to be. Her personality wouldn’t work in Stellar Blade, as while the game’s plot and setting is shlocky sci-fi it’s played straight and doesn’t involve magic or anything like that.

A closer comparison is Lara Croft and, in my opinion, she’s a much better character. Or at least she used to be. Back in the original games, which you can play via the excellent recent remaster collection, Lara is portrayed as a sort of female James Bond, always quipping and being sarcastic and just seeming to enjoy her job.

Despite being made in the early 90s the Tomb Raider games are surprisingly not sexist. Lara doesn’t ever get saved by a man and while she does have those famous polygonal breasts, they’re always covered up and, well… graphics in those days didn’t exactly allow for a lot of nuance in terms of character models.

Considering how long she’s been around now, we know that Lara is widely popular with female gamers as well as men, with no one taking offence at how she looks or acts. Unless you count the reboot trilogy, where if anyone got upset it was because she was so boring and whiny.

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In the original games though I thought they got her right. She was over-the-top and exaggerated, the way a male action star would be, but outside of the marketing there wasn’t much pandering to men and she wasn’t just a sex object to be ogled, which unfortunately EVE is.

There’s a new Tomb Raider game being worked on at the moment and we know next to nothing about it, especially in terms of how Lara will be portrayed, but I really hope they go back to the wisecracking, devil may care attitude. That’s what works best for a character like that, male or female, and Stellar Blade would’ve been an even better game if EVE was anything other than a clotheshorse for the developer’s fetishes.

By reader Unijax

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