A More Sensible Quiet
Posted by varewulf
Warning: Contains Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain spoilers regarding the character Quiet.
Not to mention just a general rant on things surrounding this matter. More on this after the break.
Metal Gear Solid V has now been out long enough for a fair amount of people having gotten through it. The overwhelming opinion seems to be that it’s an excellent game. Game of the year material for sure. The best Metal Gear game, and probably even good for people who haven’t been able to get into the Metal Gear Solid games before this.
I have heard from people that this comes with the caveat that the game is one of the weakest in the series when it comes to narrative (which is saying something), but it is pretty much flawless gameplay-wise. “Who plays Metal Gear for the story,” many seem to say. Fair enough. I’ve not gotten around to playing it yet, because I still have a huge backlog I want to clear a bit more first, but I have heard things from others who are playing, including the in-game reason for Quiet’s attire.
Before we get to that though, I feel we should get into some of the lead-up to this… whatever you want to call it.
While Quiet’s design has been known for some time before that, I’d say the proverbial “shit hit the fan” moment was back in May when Kojima posted this tweet, showing the (at the time) upcoming figurine of Quiet, which would have soft, squishy breasts. This caused a bit of a backlash, which culminated in Kojima stating that once we knew the reason for her exposure, we would be “ashamed of [our] words and deeds”. Now that the secret is out, there does not seem to be a lot of shame going around, I have to say.
I will state for the record that I do not think Kojima is a good writer. He has certain strengths, of course. Making memorable characters is one, an occasionally bizarre sense of humour is another, and he also has a certain knack for horror, as we saw best demonstrated with P.T. But even the Metal Gear Solid games have had some well-done horror, or horror-like, elements to them, if I remember correctly. Been a while since I played 1, 2, or 3. (I skipped 4.)
Among Kojima’s weaknesses is a severe inability to be succinct, most of what he writes being absolute nonsense, generally falling completely flat whenever he tries to be serious (which has probably gotten worse with every game), and anything when it comes to writing women or about women. The latter being a little strange, since he also came up with Boss, who is awesome in both design and character. I feel that shows he can do it. He just usually doesn’t. The exception to prove the rule, I suppose.
I’ve been stalling long enough. The in-game reason why Quiet is dressed that way is that she has a parasitic infection that makes her breathe through her skin, absorb water through her skin, and gain energy through photosynthesis. Which doesn’t really explain at all why she is dressed like that, and instead comes across at worst as absolute bollocks, or at best as quite confusing.
Why the stockings? Why are they full of holes? Why the glove? Why the bikini top? She’s a professional, elite soldier, right? Why didn’t she shave her hair off? Of course we all know the actual reason. Kojima has more or less admitted as such. He designed her that way with figurines in mind, and to get some sexy cosplay out of it. He just wanted a sexy character. Which would be fine (well, at least better) if he wasn’t then trying to explain it away with nonsense reasons.
First off, this is more or less the same as The End from Snake Eater. And he gets to wear a full body outfit, only having his bald head exposed for the photosynthesis. But let’s just go with the reasoning as given, and propose some changes to Quiet’s attire that involve exposing more of her skin to increase her effectiveness, while also making it less awkward. As a starting reference, you can look at this:
That was taken from this tweet, which the tweeter says she found on Reddit. As Reddit is a hive of scum and villainy, I don’t go there.
First off, get rid of the stockings. As someone pointed out, even an ankle-length skirt would let her skin breathe easier, but we also want to let her photosynthesise as much as possible. Some very short shorts, effectively tactical briefs. Let her keep the thong under that if she wants. I’m not one to judge people’s choice of underwear. (Except she can’t choose, because she’s a fictional character, and her creator made all the choices.)
And as she’s ostensibly a professional, I would think she’d prefer to restrict her boobs a bit in the field, so some sort of sports bra would seem reasonable. As for the long glove, eeehhh? It seems a little silly, but I don’t think we necessarily need to remove it. We’ve already exposed a fair bit of extra skin, meaning we don’t particularly need to remove her hair either.
If we want to get very scientific about it, it’s actually a wonder she’s able to move at all. There’s a reason plants aren’t very mobile.
My final point is: Why isn’t she green? Plants aren’t green because they feel like it, it’s because the chlorophyll necessary for photosynthesis makes them that way. I’d make her green. Star Trek has already proved that nerds have no problem with green-skinned sexy women.
In the interest of complete fairness, there are alternate skins for her, two of which are actually proper clothes. (None of which are green.) But they both take a lot of time and effort to unlock, so they’re not really a counter to the argument that her base outfit is silly. If they were available from the start, that would be a different matter.
Anyway, that’s enough rambling about a woman in a videogame. Talking about these matters tends to enrage the nerds, but I barely pay attention to comments anyway. I’m sure you come away from this no wiser than when you came in, and as such my job is complete.