US – After a first instalment in autumn 2022, Dove, Epic Games’ Unreal Engine education team and Women in Games have unveiled the sequel to their Real Virtual Beauty video campaign.
Viewers will recognise an avatar inspired by Argentinian gamer Cinthia, chosen by Dove as one of the inspirations for its diverse range of inclusive gaming avatars. The new clip shows her character represented as a fierce fighter wearing tight armour, enhancing her breasts. As she looks at her reflection after taking it off, she realises her curvacious body does not need to be trapped inside a digital corset.
The campaign, which aims to ‘make virtual beauty real’, is in response to worrying figures from a 2022 Dove study claiming 74% of girls feel under-represented in video games. On top of a series of videos and activations, the Real Virtual Beauty initiative built a curriculum to train game developers to avoid unconscious bias across the stages of avatar and character development.
In Affirmative Avatars, we previously looked at how, as 92% of people agree that ‘customisation is important when creating virtual avatars’, the market for creative and authentic ways to design and dress up online avatars is booming.
Businesses strengthening their presence in the virtual world should consider how to make their skins – a purchasable item changing the appearance of a character in gaming – more inclusive with larger sizing, various ethnicities or gender-fluid options