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Beyond the Blue-Skinned Space Babe: Deconstructing the Empowered Asari in 'Mass Effect'

Summit Speaker:

Alexandra M. Lucas (Content Writer, Microsoft Cortana)

Location: Room 3016, West Hall

Date: Tuesday, March 20

Time: 3:00pm - 3:30pm

Pass Type: All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, GDC Summits - Get your pass now!

Topic: Game Narrative Summit

Format: Session

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: All

Intelligent, thoughtful, sensual. Over-sexualized, objectified, infantilized. All of these terms describe characters among the matriarchal Asari, a monogender alien race in BioWare's 'Mass Effect' series. This presentation examines how the original Mass Effect trilogy's writers built on the traditional Triple Goddess paradigm and the green-(or in this case, blue-)skinned space babe trope to design the empowered Asari. Through the prioritization of such vital features as consent and layered portrayals of female sexuality, attendees will learn how to design more dynamic women characters that challenge established gender stereotypes, create more immersive worlds, and engender broader market appeal.


By the end of this talk, attendees will have a better understanding of how to purposefully explore gender, sexuality, and an established literary paradigm in order to develop more dynamic women characters in games. They will also learn how this approach can create more immersive worlds and expand their audience.