Sunday, November 28

Forza Horizon 5 character creator delivers what Cyberpunk 2077 promised

Cyberpunk 2077’s character creator has gone through the wringer a bit. Like many things in the CD Projekt Red RPG, it is a victim of its own marketing. For the most part, it’s okay. It’s pretty deep, even if the tattoos are preset rather than customizable, various hairstyles should be avoided, and with the shift from mid-to-first-person development it’s all a bit pointless. However, the most important aspect is the ‘transgender character creator’, and if Cyberpunk wants to insist that it was the first, we can have no doubt that Forza Horizon 5 is the best.

Calling the trans representation of Cyberpunk 2077’s character creator is generous. Sure, you can make a female character with a penis, but to what end? The sex scene with Judy largely implies that you have a vagina and the sex scene with Panama largely implies that you have a penis. You must be female to Judy and male to Panama, but with customizable genitalia, having sex scenes so obviously gendered feels like a lack of foresight.

The overall impression was that Cyberpunk 2077 as a whole didn’t care. Occasionally marketed as a progressive move (and taken as one by those desperate to give Cyberpunk credit it didn’t deserve), most of the time Cyberpunk’s marketing cycle spent talking about this feature was a joke: a girl with a cock he was a great old man. to laugh. The official Twitter account even joked about canceling his pre-order for FIFA 78 due to the lack of customizable vaginas.

He was not a creator of trans characters. It was ‘hit a woman with a willy and voila’. Maybe you thought it was funny, maybe you looked at Natalie Mars too much. Hell, maybe you got some rendering. More power to you if you did. But with Night City filled with binary gender signs, its love interests and sex workers divided along binary lines, and the complete lack of recognition or exploration of what it means to be trans, I don’t think Cyberpunk has done anything special.

If you took your clothes off, you only have a pair of tight purple panties, soft as a Ken doll down there; once you had fun making your character, any idea that you were trans was quickly forgotten.

Forza Horizon 5, to no one’s surprise, doesn’t allow you to customize your penis. However, it allows you to choose your voice separately from your pronouns and allows you to use ‘they / they’. Cyberpunk 2077, that post-genre, magical, futuristic character creator links pronoun with voice choice and doesn’t have a non-binary option. Extremely progressive.

That’s not the only place where the Forza Horizon character creator beats Cyberpunk, but it is the most obvious. Despite being set in a world that revolves around transhumanism and a future where you can be whoever you want, you can’t change your appearance in Cyberpunk 2077 at all. You could choose different clothing, although the lack of transmogrification meant that even that was restricted.

It was because of this that I ended up playing Cyberpunk 2077 much more methodically the second time around, using the game more as a fashion shooter than anything else. I suppose I should be glad that the game’s restrictions forced me to start over, allowing me to explore it from a new perspective, but I don’t think ‘your character creator made me restart my 30-hour game because I couldn’t bear the sight of my V plus’ is a positive note. While the actual customization is less detailed, Forza Horizon allows you to customize your character mid-game. Like, you know, several hundred more.

Forza also offers disabled players a representation opportunity, with many prosthetic arm and leg options available. When you think about it, it’s puzzling that Cyberpunk 2077 didn’t have this option. The main character is Johnny Silverhand, who walks with (wait for it) a huge silver hand. Several other characters in the game also have metal limbs. Cyberpunk 2077 would have been the ideal game to offer inclusivity to people with prosthetics, but instead, you just have to customize your eyes and nails.

Cyberpunk 2077’s character creator is more detailed than that of Forza Horizon; in fact, it is more detailed than most games. That is not the argument I am making. What I’m saying is that Cyberpunk promised a lot of things and didn’t deliver. Forza Horizon 5, a game that places much less value on its character creator, has shown how simple it is to get these things right. It is not about budget. It’s about caring.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *