How Sony made sure everyone would see uncanny CGI nudes resembling Ellen Page


#1

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#2

This is not much of a story. Does anyone care if it’s possible to make a video game model appear naked or not? It is funny Sony is going to so much trouble and is embarrassing itself so over this matter, but even so, the whole thing is really a big meh. I wonder if perhaps the whole thing is calculated, though. By all accounts, the game is just horrible, an all-around failure in terms of story and gameplay, so perhaps this will boost sales somehow.


#3

I’m kind of surprised she hasn’t done a regular topless or nude scene. Seems to be fairly standard practice.


#4

There are several legitimate reasons that model has “all the details” despite not intending to be shown nude in the game.

  1. Nipples are almost always modeled on game characters – they affect the shape and it is very disconcerting to see a model without them (which makes it difficult to judge it artistically).

  2. It is likely this model was initially created very early in the development process, probably before any determination had been made regarding potential nudity in the game.

  3. Human models are not always created from scratch – rather they are adapted from stock models used as a basis for many characters. Since these stock models are created without any specific usage context in mind, they typically include the “details” (males too, to be fair).

(I’m a 20 year veteran of the game industry)


#5

Change, “really, really stupid” to “really, really clever”. Publishers want their games to garner attention. This should be obvious by now.


#6

[…] why did a Quantic Dream artist spend time painstakingly modeling her breasts, nipples, vagina and pubic hair?

I think I could make a case that it could be because that’s what human beings look like, and if one wants to climb out of Uncanny Valley, one should try to make an attempt to model a realistic human being rather than some sexless android, especially if there is a nude scene in the game.

I could even argue that maybe the modeller started out with a detailed but generic model, and actually spent their time making it look like Ellen Page, rather than making sure that digital Page had breasts and pubes.

But all that rather begs the question of why we aren’t having this discussion about a male-based model. Why is there a steamy shower scene requiring a nude Ellen Page model, and not one requiring a detailed model of a naked male character? And if there were, would Sony have reacted the same way if the desteamed picture were leaked?

Edit: While I was tapping this out, coderay posted his reply above, which kinda repeated the argument I started out with. Accident, I wasn’t having a crack at you, coderay.


#7

Couple of things:

  • As noted earlier, the Fast Co writer doesn’t know how videogame assets are produced these days. They’re likening it to a painter going in and drawing every detail, when digital scans and photos are much more common. Thus removing details is the part where they’d be doing more work to it, it’s not a pervy artist sweating over the perfect nude model late at night.

  • “Removing steam” from the scene is an overly simplified explanation and incorrect. The images resulted from the original reddit user using debug hardware which is very rare and for all intents and purposes not in the hands of consumers. He got the images by adjusting the position of 3d camera in the scene, where before the shots were cropped in the same way that you’d shoot a pg-13 shower scene.

  • Sony is probably very aware of the “Streissand effect” and is even more aware that their hands are tied. In all likelihood by reaching out to gaming publications about the story they are covering their bases if the much more notoriously litigious hollywood laywers come after Sony. They can claim they did all that they could.

This is not the first time accidental nudity has come up as a hot topic issue in videogames. The end result is almost always overblown outrage. By that metric, Quantic Dream should have been more careful and I’m surprised they didn’t anticipate it happening.


#8

They already had one in Heavy Rain. It’s just about the first thing you do in that game. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TB4yyg90kE


#9

I’m not a gamer so not familiar with this game, but I was wondering just how this particular shower scene drives the story forward at all? If the reason was to steam up the mirror to reveal the message, did we really need to watch her shower? Seems unnecessarily voyeuristic. But maybe that’s the point.


#10

Having nipples on a model makes perfect sense - in fact, the model would be odd if it didn’t have them. Virtual pubic hair and genitals would surprise me, however. But that doesn’t appear to be correct - tracking down the offending images, it appears that the model is as anatomically correct in the lower region as a Barbie doll. Not sure where that story came from… I guess the censored images are more prevalent than the uncensored ones, and someone just assumed.

I can see why Sony might not actually be happy with this. See the kerfuffle over GTA’s “hot coffee” mod. That was content, that like this, may have been on disk but was not actually in the shipped game, requiring third party tools to modify the game content to make it accessible. And yet the publisher was punished as if the content was part of the game as shipped, because that was the popular understanding.


#11

That developer likes putting in banal experiences as sequences of gameplay - previous games have had shower scenes (with male characters), clothes washing, food eating, etc. etc. Such scenes are especially favored if cinematic in style.


#12

#13

I suspect Sony’s only doing this under legal threat from Page - because obviously this is only going to make it worse. At this point even they must know that, as oblivious as they often are.

Why lovingly modeled pubic hair and labia, and why the shower scene at all? They’re French!


#14

I hate it when posts mention content AND THEN DONT LINK TO IT!

So here are the relevant images:


#15

I guess that character shaves his armpits.


#16

More specifically, here’s the “vagina” and “pubic hair” that were supposedly part of the model:


I may not be a biologist, but I’m pretty sure genitals aren’t a big blank space.


#17

If the primary reason is for shape, are areolas and colour differences typically also modeled?


#18

The comment track for “Fight Club” was great. The plane crash scene was done on a real sound stage, and the frightened passenger really is getting hammered with debris shot at him by huge leaf blowers

But in the sex scene, it’s all CGI. They asked Helena Bonham Carter if she’d ever been nude for the movie and she sad “Oh God no!”…“So those aren’t your breasts?” …“I wish those were my breasts!”.


#19
  1. Including a full nude model in the game, even if locked down, all but ensured lots of press coverage once somebody figured out how to access it.

#20

Back in my day the only furniture games had were shipping crates! Princess Peach’s castle didn’t even have a damn toilet!