BioWare. I love you, I really do, and everyone knows it. But something has been bothering me lately, particularly with the arrival of the all new (but less awesome) Dragon Age game. And this thing REALLY bothers me. Because I like to get down and dirty when I game. I want my character in an RPG to get in some hot romance. Honestly, BioWare, I feel like you’re slipping a bit in the romance department. Particularly in the scenes.
First, let’s take the original game that got TONS of flack for being ‘too sexual’ (but all of us who actually played it loved the romance). The original Mass Effect game had sexual tension, kissing, side boob, and a beautiful booty. The scene that got incredibly harsh criticism was if you choose to have your female Shepard pursue a romance with Liara, the blue skinned alien. But it was a gorgeous realization of teammates coming together as more than friends. My female Shepard had a strong relationship with Kaidan. So strong, that she skipped any romancing in ME2.
Then came Dragon Age: Origins, a game that had not only hot tenting scenes, but also two characters who would swing either way. If you played as a male, and wanted to romance the sultry male elf, Zevran, you could. If you played as a female, and wanted to get it on with the red headed female bard, Leliana, you could. My female hero of Fereldan Avaline pursued a relationship with Alistair, which culminated in a beautiful romance scene. After the scene, the option to have them kiss or hop in the tent again continued to be available. It goes without saying that every time my party returned to camp, I would have Avaline and Alistair tenting.
In the sequel to the original Mass Effect, Mass Effect 2 widened the number of romanceable options for the player. In fact, Shepard could get it on with various races. However, in Mass Effect 2, there was no complete nudity. While Miranda unzips her suit to reveal bra and panties and Jacob strips off his shirt, there’s no sideboob and bum reveal. And, unlike Dragon Age: Origins, there aren’t any sex motions. What’s even worse, if you decide to remain faithful to your flame from ME1, you get a rather cold reception on Horizon, and all you’ll wind up doing when you could be getting it on with someone else is staring at a picture of them. Pretty lame.
And in Dragon Age 2, the latest game out by BioWare, some romance scenes don’t have characters in their skivvies at all, and it fades to black WAAAAAY too early. In fact, I don’t believe there’s an actual tenting scenes in any of the romances. There might be some kissing, some frantic throwing-against-the-wall, and hand-holding-leading-to-the-bed, but that pales in comparison to the actual sex scenes in Dragon Age: Origins. It was a huge disappointment to those of us excited to see the new scenes. These new scenes actually left me in a “That’s IT?!!” state.
As you can see, BioWare has continued to tame down the love scenes in their games. This makes me incredibly wary of the upcoming Mass Effect 3, and another sequel in the Dragon Age series. In Mass Effect 3, especially, I’m hoping this trend BioWare has gone on won’t continue. Because I’d really like to see an explosive reuniting scene with my Shepard and her former flame Kaidan.
BioWare, you may consider this my urgent plea that the toning down of romances and love scenes doesn’t continue for the upcoming games you have in store. Seriously. Please.