Makeup: My MMO kryptonite

The other day, a slightly ridiculous tweet from Black Desert Online prompted the staff at Massively OP into a frenzy of discussion over makeup and why there is just no way that the picture on the right there is a girl without makeup.

But as we discussed this around the office, I confessed that makeup is, to some extent, my MMO kryptonite. As a player who almost exclusively picks a female character, I’m often stymied when I come to the makeup screen. It’s equally bad in games like The Sims 4.

I just don’t know what to do, I really don’t. Eye shadow, mascara, blush, lip gloss, lipstick, foundation, concealer, eyebrow highlighting, cheek implants… I am absolutely clueless when it comes to picking any of these. I know that if I start messing around with them, then chances are I’ll end up with a raccoon-faced emo raver despite any intentions to the contrary. My best bet is usually to select “Thanks but no thanks” to every makeup option and move on.

This is most likely because I’ve never had a proper education regarding makeup in real life. My need for such information has been minimal, aside from getting the stuff caked on my face for a few high school plays. I’m always in a kind of awe at all of the techniques I see women use to “put their face on,” as they call it. It’s like they’re painting a self-portrait without any hesitation, whereas I keep thinking that if I ever ended up in a 1980s-style body swap movie with the opposite gender, I would probably end up looking like Pennywise or a coal miner if I tried anything.

It’s only a very little bit frustrating when my lack of knowledge hits the MMO character creation page. I generally like sassy and fun-looking characters, and I feel like I’m slightly missing out on making my toons all that they could be. Fortunately, it’s not like your default female face looks like a bedraggled woman who just got out of bed after cramming a pillow against her face for eight hours. MMOs are pretty generous when it comes to making you look good despite your ignorance.

Maybe there’s a market for makeup experts to come in and explain all of this to clueless players. Probably a very, very limited market, but still.

5 thoughts on “Makeup: My MMO kryptonite

  1. Chris Bickford November 22, 2017 / 10:38 am

    There’s a blog for it. A quick google search reveals you probably want to find some youtube channels. It’s pretty easy to get a good grounding in any topic you are interested in by finding relevant blogs. I had to do the same for clothing a few years ago, it’s pretty easy.

  2. Tyler F.M. Edwards November 22, 2017 / 11:50 am

    I almost never put any make-up on my female characters, either. Just doesn’t seem to make much sense for an adventurer slaying monsters in the deep wilderness to be carrying some lip gloss in her purse, IMO.

    I put a little eyeliner on one of my TSW alts, and I like warpaint/face tattoos when those are an option, but that’s about it.

  3. Bhagpuss November 22, 2017 / 2:56 pm

    I can’t say I’ve noticed the option in many MMOs other than a handful of Eastern imports. Every game has tattoos and scars and such, which I almost always avoid, and hairstyles, which I spend ages choosing, but make-up not so much.

    Or maybe it’s there and I just miss it. I generally skip through the character creation part pretty fast – after all, what I’ll be looking at for the next few hours or few years is mostly the back of my character’s head . If it wasn’t for the screenshots I take for the blog I doubt I’d be able to pick most of my characters o ut of a line-up if they were looking at me face-on.

  4. Galactrix November 22, 2017 / 10:17 pm

    My motto for makeup is “less is more”. If I do decide to put some on a character, I try to make it subtle or as natural looking as possible while being an enhancement over whatever it looks like with no makeup at all.

  5. tithian November 23, 2017 / 8:03 am

    It’s not supposed to cater to you or me, but the multitude of gamers (female or otherwise) that like to engage into this kind of virtual Barbie simulation. It’s for people that maybe dabbled a bit in Second Life and like this sort of customization in their games. and I’m sure it’s no coincidence that it’s more prevalent in Asian games, where women generally use a more liberal amounts of makeup (especially in Korea, where a lot of these games are being made).

    I prefer presets when dealing with that sort of thing, because I know that if I start messing with sliders and colours I’ll most likely create some sort of clown-faced streetwalker. So if there’s no decent preset, then I go for absolutely nothing.

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