You know, people complain a lot about female sexualisation in all kinds of media, but you see no one complain about the way guys are sexualised. Comic book heroines looking too sexy? Believe me, they're not the only ones!
As a gay guy, I've got more of an eye for these things than the straight guys getting demonized, so how about I help even the playing field a little and highlight some extra-hot guys in gaming? Let's start the list with...
The Gods of SMITE – Ranking: Justifiable
(editor’s note: actual fan art of Cabrakan from redditer bbWerth, #WholeNewWorld)
Not all of them qualify, but when you look at gods like Cabrakan or Chaac, there's no denying that the visual team went out of their way to sculpt those gods beyond mortal standards. And those are guys going around in the loincloth of protection. And those two are just the easiest targets: If you can look past the furry aspect (Or if you're into that), Ra, Anhur and even Anubis are also extraordinarily well sculpted, with Anubis and Ra flaunting fitness model proportions (Anubis only in splash art) and Anhur having shoulders that rival Cabrakan's. Oh, and if you're more into somewhat skinnier guys: Apollo goes around the field completely shirtless.
Now you might say, justifiably, that is normal, considering gods are supposed to have some level of perfection to them and these physiques exhibit power. That's definitely true for someone like Anhur, who's the god of warriors. But Ra is harder to justify, and Anubis, whose in-game model has a more gaunt, starved look to it, seems entirely undeserving of a fitness model body in his splash art.
And of course, the crowning glory of that little lineup of oddly sexy guy gods is He Bo, the chinese god of the yellow river. His original model was perhaps a bit more true to his origins, an old man who drowned himself as penance for his hubris. The original model sported a long robe on a frail figure, a balding old man with a long white beard. Buuut ……
when the model got updated, it got replaced by a guy who looks a lot tighter in his skin, carefully groomed hair and goatee, and his arms must've tripled in girth. Not to mention the little cleavage he sports now, giving an alluring view of a well defined chest and abs. There's no way around it, the new He Bo splash art is pure eye-candy.
(editor's note: you can always go with the surf skin for 600 gems)
Infinite Crisis – Ranking: Bold
This game (Another MOBA, by DC comics) stands out because it seems to be actively seeking out male sexualisation. Of course, there's the standard superhero sexualisation, with guys like Batman, Superman and Green Lantern filling out spandex and leaving no striation of their impossible physiques to the imagination, but Infinite Crisis seems to have boldly gone a little further than that.
Infinite Crisis pulls its characters from different variations of earth: There's the standard earth, an earth where the cold war ended in WWIII, wiping out the entire world in nuclear warfare, a steampunk earth, an arcane earth...
Then there is this, an earth in which things go horribly wrong for the heroes. Batman becomes a vampire for example, and Superman trades in the spandex for a kinky little top and bondages speedo/miniskirt thing. The splash art draws attention to his abdomen, where his abs and meticulously carved Adonis belt lay claim to your gaze. Damn, supes, why couldn't you wear this kind of stuff before you turned blue? But probably the biggest piece of male eye candy Infinite Crisis offers is a reskin for Robin, called Track and Field Robin.
The splash art for it is pure fap material for gays and gals, featuring the young athlete in workout gear, and god does it look good. Thick shoulders, thicker traps, accentuated collarbone, deep line between the pectorals... A body built for dexterity and strength. Yep, Robin is just casually showing his stuff. And I can't imagine this splash art being made with anything else in mind.
Super Smash Bros 3DS & U – Ranking: Overlooked
High heels are a sin and workout gear is rape culture. With how much attention Zero Suit Samus has received prior to the release of these two games, people seem to have mostly ignored the fact that male sexualisation in this generation of smash bros has more than quadrupled. Where up till now, only Captain Falcon flaunted male sexualisation, he's now joined by three new guys!
(editor's note: Are you feeling it?)
Starting off with the more awkward one, there's Swimsuit Shulk for those who like the “British lad next door” type. He may not be packing the biggest shoulders or biceps, but he certainly has the definition in his body! And he's not afraid to show it off either when he sheds all clothes to go into battle in his swimtrunks. Joke skin? Maybe, but for some, this skin is just more eye candy.
It has to be noted though, that for how defined he is, there's something that got messed up in his build. Shulk's waist is about as wide as his shoulders, which gives him a rectangular look. That's a pretty big miss, Nintendo.
Two more obvious new arrivals on the sexy guy scene are Little Mac and Ike. Little Mac does sport the reverse issue that Shulk does, where his shoulders are too wide for his waist, but overall, Little Mac does fit quite a few stud criteria: Young, pretty good looking, tan and ripped beyond belief. You can definitely picture the guy winning a boxing match, that much is true, but for those with the minds for it, you can imagine him doing a lot more! With his arms and shoulders out in the open, Little Mac seems to constantly remind the players that his arms are unmatched.
Ike hit the gym pretty hard between Brawl and 3DS & U, and boy has he grown up well! Where he used to be dressed more modestly, showing off only from the elbow down and still sporting a little bit of that femininity that Marth is so famous for, he made some radical changes and came out guns blazing in 3DS & U! Sharper jaw, intense eyes and showing off biceps hardened by swinging that two-handed sword around like a twig, Ike's definitely upped his sex appeal by a ton! You might not've given him a second thought in Brawl but he's definitely easy on the eyes now!
Of course, there's one contestant that's been in the Super Smash series since its very first installment, and although he was always the sort of image you'd toss up when talking about unattainable body standards, it's only gotten worse (or better, depending how you look at it) with every generation. Captain Falcon first joined on the N64 version of Smash Bros where his low quality model could only use some basic shapes to show off his physique, although the textures were more blatant in showing off how impossibly ripped this guy is.
Then when melee rolled around, the model was reflecting his physique a lot better. This guy is pure, 100% perfection in terms of musculature. Every inch of him is coated in it and every centimeter is busy showing it off. That skintight uniform only serves to exaggerate, making not only his pectorals stand out but even his abs are fighting against the fabric. I'm not going to lie, for a muscle fanatic like myself, Captain Falcon is certainly someone that appeals to my tastes, but in all honesty, this guy is close to impossible. It's like his biceps have biceps.
Of course, there's one thing that didn't go by unnoticed in Smash Bros 3DS & U, and there's quite a few things that can be said about this little change... It's gone all over the net because it's so blatant, so in-your-face. We're talking dick here. Big dick.
(editor's note: Dear God)
The bulge that Captain Falcon's new model sports, is probably the best argument you have for “Harmful male sexualisation”. With the average penis size being recorded at about 5.5 inches, the internet has spared no expenses in throwing around bigger numbers. There's a vast difference between actual 9 inches and internet 9 inches for example. But seriously, there are mental health issues that stem from penis size, or a lack thereof.
In that regard, Captain Falcon is the destroyer of worlds, as the bulge he's sporting, well... That's got to be 10+. It is obvious, it is there in every shot, it's gigantic. Size queens rejoice, because Captain Falcon's third leg is going to be filling your dreams.
(editor's note: Art by headingsouth on deviantart.com, NSFW link, sooooo many cocks)
Of course, the other explanation is that Captain Cock is getting a bit more excited than normal, out there on the battlefield, and perhaps judging by the skintight uniform and nipple-buttons, he might just be excited to be facing the aforementioned Swimsuit Shulk, Ike and Little Mac. Who knows, maybe he swings that way!
Chris Redfield – Ranking: Arms
You know how some people like to use a character's head as a comparison point for breast size? Meet Chris Redfield, the guy that makes that viable for arms. The guy's unflexed bicep matches the size of his head. If we divide physiques of video game character up into Reasonable, Reasonable Exaggeration and Severe Exaggeration, then Chris falls into that alluring category in the middle. It's probably not possible, but it's still reasonable enough to not lose its appeal.
Of course, beyond those arms we've got massive shoulders towering over a trim waist, and although his shirt does a good job of hiding his torso, I don't think anyone's going have any trouble picturing what's underneath the fabric. And that's not where it stopped, because just like most modern video game heroes, he's got the typical stubble, short dark hair, strong jawline and dark eyes. In short, Chris is another one of those model-like characters.
But honestly, this guy is a definite example of unattainable body standards broadcast to men, as I'm fairly certain it's impossible to have that trim torso mixed in with arms the size of your head.
Dante & Nero – Ranking: Seduction
For as much thought as I've given a male equivalent of Bayonetta, it wasn't until I began writing this thing that I realised that we kind of already have one. Dante & Nero from Devil May Cry (I'm thinking original Dante here) They aren't the “Lad next door” like Apollo and Shulk, nor are they a hulking muscle beast like Little Mac or Chris Redfield, and they don't even flaunt bulges like Captain Falcon does.
No, much like Bayonetta's sexyness comes from more than just physique; Dante and Nero seem to be more about mannerisms and good looks. With how much attention went into carving Captain Falcon's body, imagine that all of that attention now, instead, went into face and character. I'll admit to not knowing the franchise, so I don't know them all that well, but from what I understand it’s their confidence that strikes a chord. I won't go into too much detail, so I'll just leave it at the good looks. Once again, strong jawline, one's got stubble, the other has dazzling blue eyes, and that platinum-white hair certainly rounds it up very nicely. I think these two take the cake when it comes to looks, and we have to remember that that's a form of sexualisation too.
(editor's note: Now kiss)
So there you have it, some of the sexiest, best looking guys in gaming. Whatever your cup of tea may be, there's a guy in a game somewhere that fits your appetite, and when we look at guys like Chris Redfield and Captain Falcon, it couldn't be more obvious that “problematic sexualisation” exists among male characters too. Misogynistic sexualisation in video games? It's sexualisation all right, but I don't think there's anything misogynistic about it.
I do have to say though that I'd be all in favor of more male sexualisation. More games could stand to experiment with making males look hot and doing some fanservice for gays and gals. TERA comes to mind as doing this a bit with some of the cloth armor, if I recall correctly, which would often sport ab windows or bared shoulders. I also seem to recall that one of the Deva cloth armors in Rappelz did that too, not to mention the starting gear for the Asura, which is essentially a few leather straps.
(editor's note: Honorable Mentions, Lucifer's gigantic flop cock in Dante's Inferno)
One advice I can give is that shirtless isn't necessarily the sexiest way to go. There's great opportunity in using clothes to emphasize. A shirtless muscle guy may look good, but a guy that's wearing a sleeveless vest will draw extra attention to his shoulders. And instead of pants, using a robe from the waist down draws attention to a trim, slim waist, which in turn draws attention to a perfected V shape torso. Bracelets around the upper arm to emphasise girth, wristbands to emphasise the girth of the forearm, etc. Don't be afraid to experiment and see what makes a muscle guy stand out from the rest of the shirtless hunks gaming has to offer!
With that, I'm ending my list for now. Got any suggestions, some other hot guys that caught your eye? Feel free to put them up in the comments below!