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Vote For The Default FemShep In Mass Effect 3, Because Everything's A Beauty Pageant

fem_shep_01.jpg

For the third game in the Mass Effect series, Bioware's promised that the female version of Commander Shepard will get a boosted profile in promotional materials and a place on the Collector's Edition box art. You know what that means? Makeover! Throwing out the default FemShep that's been around for two games, Bioware wants you to "like" one of six potential new Shepards on the Mass Effect Facebook page. The one that gathers the most votes will be put into the game. You'll still be able to change her looks as much as you like, including importing your old Shepard, but the winner will end up in trailers and official artwork for the game.

To see all the choices up close, click on the Facebook link below. They all look like what someone could come up with spending 5 minutes in the character creator. You've got butch, blonde, vamp, butch with red hair, vaguely Asian, and one that looks like Victoria Beckham for some reason. That's all the different kinds of females there are in real life, right? I'm not an expert.

In the back of my mind it seems a little distasteful to put FemShep up for a vote, as it reinforces the stereotype that all women are just in competition with each other. I guess that doesn't exactly fit, since this is technically just one woman with an infinite number of different appearances. Instead, when the voters (almost inevitably) pick the blonde one, EA can get away with not taking a risk by claiming it's just what the audience wants. Three cheers for democracy!

Female Shepard. "Like" the one you want in game! [Mass Effect Facebook]
[via: Kotaku]

19 Comments

luminum said:

I like that the darkest she gets is caramel colored. "We want there to be a possibility that she's black, but not TOO black, you know? Possibly Latina, to."

*sigh

dingox said:

I voted for the bottom middle one because it reminds me of Lightning from FF13. Also, I didn't want one that looks like Screaming Beauty from MGS4.

Lucrece said:

Latino people can be white, Asian, and pretty much of any other race or mix, given that Hispanic/Latino is an ethnicity, not a race, luminum.

What really bothers me is the fucking eye-liners. Make-up, on a commander? Really?

Nexus said:

Doesn't really matter for me, as my Shepard's male.

I prefer 4 and 5 though.

Shin Gallon said:

I'm rolling Male Shepard, so I have no horse in this race, but none of these appeal to me. The old default female Shepard looked better if you ask me (IE more like a real person, less like a fashion model).

Gamescook said:

I voted for the bottom-left and bottom-right versions only. When are we going to see the next strong non-white woman grace a game's boxart?

DirtySpaceNews said:

This is all silly, as my lady Shepherd is the only lady Shepherd. :-P

My roommate and I, after witnessing each other play through ME1&2 (me with a lady Shepherd, him with a black male Shepherd), we couldn't separate the voices from the characters we'd built. So the Bioware canon male Shepherd is ridiculous to us, because our canon Shepherd is a black man named Benjamin, and our canon female Shepherd is a long black-haired lady named Bernice.

Sach said:

Meh, I voted for the first one since she looks like Natalie Portman. >_> I should have voted for 4 or 6, but my main female and male Sheps are black and blatino respectively, so I don't feel as bad as I should.

What's with all the slutty eyeliner?

Limeade said:

The worst idea is to have put FemShep's 'appearance' up for a vote. It boils down to a Hottest Babe contest, nothing more than that. It has little to do with believability for the role of Shepard as Shepard, and little to do with what kind of iconic image would be empowering for the strong female character Shepard is. After all, all women must be pretty, wear makeup, and have no scars.

Also, the faces pretty much look the same, just with two 'darker' skin tones. None of them truly dark-skinned, just light-skinned black and an olive. All of them also sharing most of the same facial features, petite, delicate, smooth. No varying degrees of features at all, imo.

I voted #4. I rather see a strong non-white protagonist. It isn't like the industry is exploding with blonde bombshells already, right.

Karrde said:

We should all vote for the bottom middle. Clearly it's David Bowie.

gaymer_geek said:

What female soldier would honestly have long hair !!! It's dangerous, in close combat you can get it grabbed and tugged, it's really not a good thing to have.

Oh well, this seems kind of dumb. I always thought they should have Sheppards face/sex change quickly during a montage at the end of the ME ads and saying something like Sheppard is our/your hero, etc.

I don't know anybody who kept the predesigned face, atleast amongst friend I know who played the game.

Xzarron said:

I want to vote for the black Femshep, but I don't use Facebook. :(

Someone vote for her for me please!

We need more positive representations of black females in gaming. They are sorely under-represented.

endolly said:

BlondeShep, because not only does the commander have time for liquid eyeliner--she has time to bleach her hair. C'MON.

Geoff said:

Bioware is demonstrating yet again they have the minds and attitudes of 15 yeah old boys.

Kenneth said:

Great. The boring white blond look is going to win.

I'm partial to the forth one.

I wish they hadn't put it up to a vote.
Now every time I look in the case I'll be sad, knowing what could have been.

Thicketford said:

If I had a Facebook account I'd vote for 1). She looks closest to a female version of the default male-Shep.

Still, I would have prefered the default Fem-Shep they already have (short, red hair).

g_whiz said:

Wow. I think whoever said that putting appearance and "likeability" of girl characters up for a vote has unfortunate implications is right. Can we vote on male Shepards that "make the cut" now too?

-Second observation- Even in the future all men want generic space blondes. Lame.

I too am voting for Blonde Shepard, BUT if redhead Shep had Blonde Shep's hairstyle, it would be OVER!!!!


I love the Samus look, but I need Jean Grey Shep sometimes and that was never an option.

Wynne said:

Is the blonde hair definitive? According to David Silverman of EA that's not necessarily the case; "we have received some comments from people that they like -- the hair style of one with the color of another -- so we may decide to take the winning one and do a 2nd round of voting where we change some cosmetic things like hair and eye color just to ensure that fans get the FemShep they want."

So if you want a second round of voting for FemShep #5's coloring, get on Twitter and let dsilvermanea know! :)

And girls who like girls who like rumble packs!

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Recent Comments

Wynne on Vote For The Default FemShep In Mass Effect 3, Because Everything's A Beauty Pageant: Is the blonde hair definitive? According to David Silverman of EA that's not necessarily the case; "we have received some...

Cody Shiranai on Vote For The Default FemShep In Mass Effect 3, Because Everything's A Beauty Pageant: I too am voting for Blonde Shepard, BUT if redhead Shep had Blonde Shep's hairstyle, it would be OVER!!!! I...

g_whiz on Vote For The Default FemShep In Mass Effect 3, Because Everything's A Beauty Pageant: Wow. I think whoever said that putting appearance and "likeability" of girl characters up for a vote has unfortunate implications...

Thicketford on Vote For The Default FemShep In Mass Effect 3, Because Everything's A Beauty Pageant: If I had a Facebook account I'd vote for 1). She looks closest to a female version of the default...

Kenneth on Vote For The Default FemShep In Mass Effect 3, Because Everything's A Beauty Pageant: Great. The boring white blond look is going to win. I'm partial to the forth one. I wish they hadn't...

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