In our penultimate BioWare story, we told you what the studio thought about the mainstream reactions to sex in videogames. Since the developer is no stranger to erotic digital liaisons, we also asked how important the sex was to games like Mass Effect and Dragon Age: Origins, and whether it was just sex for sex’s sake.
“It’s not crucial for a roleplaying game to have sex, by any means,” answers Mike Laidlaw. “I think what it does is certainly provide a point though. You don’t have to have it. If you do have it, what is crucial, in my opinion, is you do it in context. Where it fails is when it’s just tacked on. ‘We threw it in there for no good reason, your character doesn’t have any reason to do it, it’s just there for straight gratuitousness.’ At that point it’s just kind of lame.
“Where it works though, is when you’re trying to build up a world that has characters that are deep enough and interesting enough that they could interact with your character realistically in this way, that they have a reason to grow in affection, maybe you save their life, maybe you help them with a problem, maybe they’re just really nice and they like the way you walk, I don’t know.
“Sexuality in general can be very compelling elements in story because on top of just titillation, it creates an investment, a bond between two characters, and letting that play out and knowing that your experience is going to be different from someone else who maybe playing a female and wants to sleep with a guy or something, knowing that it’s kind of customized for you gives you this extra layer of care about the characters and how things turn out for them. And when you’re dealing with a world this dark, and at times, unrelenting, it can be really, really strong to have that level of investment in anybody.”
That’s it for our coverage from BioWare and our chat with Dragon Age: Origins lead designer Mike Laidlaw. I hope you enjoyed our stories and keep reading Destructoid because we have plenty more original content from our chats with developers coming very soon.