So we all saw it coming, right from the get-go to the moment that we saw her. We all knew that Cindy would cause some controversy among “some” people (I find that to be rather saddening, because it shouldn´t have to be like that). Well, Final Fantasy XV has been released (I’m a little late on my review, stuck in the ocean without my trusty PS4 for a week, but it’s up next), and like a clockwork, we have ourselves a ton of articles from people like Vice upset about the look of Cindy in the game’s final release. Why these media outlets are so sex negative, I’ll never know, but today, I’ll be covering an article by Vice called “’Final Fantasy XV’ Has Some Big Problems” and why their position on Cindy is completely wrong.

The article appears to be a series of letters between three people: Mike Diver, Patrick Klepek, and Austin Walker. In this article, Mike gives his problem with FFXV, the attractive mechanic that took the world by storm. Then it refers to Hajime Tabata, the game’s director, who made the statement that Cindy was not supposed to be sexual, but rather energetic and outgoing, which I personally understand. However, the writer clearly isn’t buying it…As he says that given the motions she makes in servicing the vehicle, such as wiping the windshield of the car, it makes it hard to believe that the intention is for energetic.

patrick klepek final fantasy xv has some big problems

Why enjoy the game in question when you can put it under a microscope and look for flaws and whine about everything there is? I mean, doesn´t that sound like a whole lot fun?

He ends his point by saying that so far, the trinity of women in FFXV, Cindy, Lunafreya, and Iris, seem to be so two-dimensional, offering very little to the story. At this point, I’d like to say a few words, particularly about Lunafreya. It’s clear that Mike has seen Kingsglaive and the Brotherhood series, as he says, “The events-of-FFXV-preceding Kingsglaive movie was awful in terms of representation”, and I’d respectfully disagree. In Kingsglaive, Lunafreya was brave. She was dedicated. She was willing to risk her life for the future of the kingdom. Heck, avoiding as many spoilers as possible, she jumped out of an airship to ensure that the future of the Kingdom happens as what is necessary to the benefit of her people. Calling her a two-dimensional character while not mentioning all that she’s done for the story before the true story even begins is hilariously wrong. I won’t point out Lunafreya’s deeds in the main game because, first and foremost, spoilers, and second he says he didn’t get very far thus far.

final fantasy xv aranea highwind

I find it to be rather funny that I don’t see anyone complaining about this beauty (it´s Aranea Highwind).

Patrick Klepek is next. He says he had the same concerns, saying he didn’t feel safe filling up his car at Hammerhead because his mother was in town and he didn’t want her to see it. He wishes that there was DLC to give her a different set of clothes, which is ironic, because in this left-leaning culture, we are taught that women should be able to wear whatever they want, but when a fictional character wears something sexy, we have to control what she wears. He gives the point that she seems out-of-place, given how she’s the only character that takes fan service to this extreme.

final fantasy xv cindy aurum

Wait, so let me get this straight. Patrick Klepek is afraid of his mom seeing Cindy Aurum from FFXV? This is incredibly tame, for Christ’s sake man!

I’ll end the summary part right there, as Austin doesn’t give much to refer to in this conversation. So let’s get down to the nitty-gritty.

So yes, I find that there is no problem with Cindy for being too attractive. Surprise, surprise, am I right? However, it isn’t because I’m some straight white male who needs to check his privilege, but because there’s nothing wrong with her dress. Sure, in the west, it can definitely be taken as fan-service, and in a sense, it kind of is. However, the idea that she needs to be wearing overalls because she works in a garage, as stated by Mike, is wrong. On top of it being more common to wear a jumpsuit at garages, at least here in the US, there is a reason she wears what she does.

As Tabata has stated, she is energetic and outgoing, and while this can be conveyed over the course of the game through words, and actions, it’s made quicker based on the first impression. While Cindy is a character that you can interact with over the course of the game, it isn’t enough so that her personality would leave a lasting impression, and given her introduction in Episode: Duscae. In Duscae, you interact with her twice. Once in the beginning, when you bring the car to Hammerhead, and once in the end, when you bring back the Bounty money to fix your car. Since we have the smallest of time to develop her, we can increase how we feel about her and how her personality is reflected by signaling with her look.

final fantasy xv cindy aurum car

Why is there a problem with a hard-working woman doing her job?

Since that is a very complicated psychological phenomenon, I’ll summarize it with this:

You have to hire someone for a job as a business consultant. You have two individuals with the same résumé. They have the same level of experience, and there is no real difference from what you can tell based solely on their credentials in total. However, Person A comes to the interview wearing a nice suit, as one would normally expect to wear to an interview of this caliber. Person B comes to the interview wearing a tank top, shorts, flip-flops, and a backwards cap. So, who do you hire?

Now, you don’t know anything about their personalities, but even if they say the exact same words and acted in the same professional way, the person in the suit is more likely to appear more professional, given his dress, his first impression, even if Person B uses the same words.

In other words, the personality the two people are trying to convey is stronger given the proper dress, and let’s be honest. It’s hard to look energetic and outgoing in your typical garage dress. On top of all of this, the game clearly takes place in the summer, given the constant times Noctis complains about the heat and is told to take off his coat. While, no, Cindy is not dressed for typical garage work. You see, over the course of the story. She appears to do most of her work outside of the garage in the sun. I’m a bit kooky as I wear jeans and a zip-up hoodie in the summer, but I couldn’t do that and work where she does.

The one thing I don’t get is that they are making such a big deal about a character that, spoiler alert, isn’t even important to the story after Chapter 1. Yeah, you can do a few side quests for her that help pimp out your ride, but other than that, she doesn’t really contribute. Heck, Cid does more to contribute to the story since he actually gets you to another continent, and he was a part of the King’s guard, as Ignis, Gladio and Prompto are for Noctis.

As for Iris, I personally wish she played more of a role, but I see her existence in this game as a continuation of a “where-are-they-now” following the Brotherhood series. Nevertheless, maybe they’ll have fewer problems with her when they reach the endgame. No spoilers, but she does pretty well for herself.

final fantasy xv iris amicitia render

We don’t get to see much of her (Iris Amicitia Render), so it’s pretty hard to label her as two-dimensional. She’s just kind of there to round out her side of the story started in the animation.

Lunafreya is the part that gets me though. It hurts going through this article and not gushing about how important and how awesome she was in-game, as it gives away so much of the game. Maybe I’ll write about her in a Spoiler-full article and refer to her relevance, but their idea that Lunafreya is nothing more than a victim and a refugee is completely incorrect.

final fantasy xv lunafreya nox fleuret

Lunafreya Nox Fleuret is one of my favorite characters FFXV, and in the FF series in general.

In short, the idea that FFXV has a problem with how they depict women is incorrect, and the idea which Patrick has that Cindy Aurum much express why she dresses the way she does is silly. You wouldn’t expect anyone else in the game to express why they dress the way they do. However, If that were to be the case, then I would like an explanation to why the four main characters dress like a boy band?

And with that said, what´s your take on this matter? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section down below!

Vice Gaming

Robin Ek – Editor

This is a personal opinion of the writer, and it doesn’t necessarily represent the other writers’ (nor The Gaming Ground’s) opinions.

I am a huge fan of Final Fantasy XV and love every one of their characters. I am not a fan of these authors or any of their work and feel like their opinion is ungrounded given what we are given in the game.

tgg author avatar Jay Shay
Justin Easler
Senior editor
The Gaming Ground
Twitter: @masterjayshay

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25 Comments ON " Vice’s vice with the lovely ladies of Final Fantas... "
  • Grey

    The very large number of ladies leaping to cosplay Cindy is confirmation enough for me that a significant number of women wouldn’t agree with Vice’s assessment of the character.

    “Patrick Klepek is next. He says he had the same
    concerns, saying he didn’t feel safe filling up his car at Hammerhead
    because his mother was in town and he didn’t want her to see it.”

    “No, mother! Get out! You’re not supposed to see something like this!”
    “Son, it’s just tits. I’ve seen them my entire life.”

    Then he curls up and cries in shame, while she downs a half quart of rye and wonders how she raised such a twit.

    • Klepek is like the real life version of Smithers from the Simpsons…And speaking of which, this guy got butt hurt like hell from this post:

      • Zach Dygard

        Right, that’s why the journalist here picking apart “Smithers” looks like a butt lick. Wow, you won an argument with Smithers. Real nice work there, kid

        • I didn´t have to do much, as he was out of bounds from the very start.

          • Zach Dygard

            That’s what I’m saying. You hopped on a bike with training wheels and thought you were evil Knievel. I bet when you sent this to the editor you were all proud and stuff. Kind of like when a third grader shows his mom the alphabet and she responds “wow son that is really amazing”.

          • Do you work at Vice or something? You seem to be very salty mate, don´t you have better things to do on a Friday night? Nope, I just gave him a short answer.

    • Zach Dygard

      Just because you’ve seen some women cosplay doesn’t mitigate the purpose of using them for sexual objects. That’s basically all they are in the game, and either those cosplayers also fall into that demeaning role or you might have misinterpreted them. Either way, we’re trying to move past seeing women as just sexual objects, I struggle with this personally but I feel we should try to move forward

      • Nanya

        Humans see each other as sexual objects. To try and deny that is to deny biology.

        There is nothing wrong with it, unless you’re ashamed of the fact that you, as a person, get turned on by seeing sexy women.

    • Zach Dygard

      And yea this guys argument about his mom is stupid.

      The journalist here who picked apart Klepek is like a bully beating up the special kid and saying look how strong I am.

      Good job, journalist, you picked apart an utterly stupid argument. A 12 year old could of done it – the difference here if you are published adult.

      I have more respect for the WWE than people who pick apart dumb arguments like they are some kind of champion.

      • Jay Shay

        The issue is that we have three supposedly adult, around the age of 30, men who are healthy in every forseeable way who are saying it’s wrong for Square to have characters like Cindy because she’s too pretty.
        If you haven’t noticed, this is the mainstream video game media. These are the people who can make or break games and the purpose of being a game’s journalist is to be unbiased and talk about the game objectively. When you start deaming a game unworthy because it doesn’t follow your political beliefs, you’ve failed as a game’s journalist and are subject to people like me picking apart your arguments. These people gatekeep what kind of games should be made by deciding what is and isn’t agreeable to their political beliefs. It’s like how at my college my professor constantly guilts men for being male. Yeah the argument is stupid but it should be called out because she’s in a position to teach people that this is the way. I don’t want to be the person calling them out. But I feel as though I have to because if they go unchecked then they abuse their position as a platform for their ideas. If they did their job, then I could avoid articles like this.

  • This is essentially the SJW/feminist “muh realism” and “immersion” argument again. Which personally to me, is a load of utter horse faeces. I say this because video games are fictional, the stories within them are fictional, and the characters are fictional. Video games are one of the best forms of escapism from the real world, so fantasy is natural, and it should be free of politics. Because after all, anything that is political and politically-correct has shown to be complete cancer. Especially gender-politics.

    Cindy could wear a bikini and I not care less. In fact, I would like that even more because it’s pleasing to my evil male gaze. Men like sexy women, deal with it, feminists.

    How ironic that the game they’re crying “muh realism” about has the word Fantasy in it.

    The feminist “muh realism” argument is incredibly dishonest and biased, and is just used as a means to censor / ban anything they dislike, which in this case of course, is sexy women. Isn’t it funny that to them, it’s ALWAYS about female showing skin, and never about any other supernatural and unrealistic aspects in video games? And the bias of course, is that it only applies to female characters.

    They would look an ounce more respectable (lol as if that’s possible) if they applied the same standard to male characters as well instead of coming up with shit excuses to justify double standards. Because from what I’ve seen during my lifetime, not every man is a 6-foot+ handsome 6-pack chiselled-pecs warrior in real life.

    And before anyone tries, don’t give me that bullshit about how sexualisation “happens to women more” or “it hurts women” or “it’s different when it’s done to men” etc., it does NOT justify the double standards. These characters are all fictional and no human being in real life is being hurt.

    Same principle like that burger advert of the sexy naked woman a while ago in the USA, the actress agreed to do it and got paid good money for it. No woman got exploited, taken advantage of or got hurt by it. Therefore, no sexism, no discrimination and no objectification.

    “then I would like an explanation to why the four main characters dress like a boy band?”

    You will not get an honest answer about that from them, because if they were to answer that truthfully, it exposes them for the hypocrites they are.

    Instead, you’ll get the usual bullshit like:

    “male power fantasy”
    “male characters cannot be sexualized”
    etc. etc. etc.

    • Zach Dygard

      Fictional doesn’t make it okay, just because “fictional”. Japan publishes child sex comics, but “it’s fictional!” doesn’t hold water there.

      Get better arguments.

    • Jay Shay

      It’s funny that they make the argument that people like Gladio are a male power fantasy and therefore cannot be sexualized. Heck, I’ve been barrated for years by my younger brother because I couldn’t be strong and buff like him but I don’t honestly care. I don’t let it bother me. I’m just glad Square isn’t caving into these people. It’d be a sad day if they did.

  • Zach Dygard

    Wow you really had to try hard to find some small and goofy reason to justify you’re views. You would be absolutely terrible on a debate team, he’ll you might even convince the audience in the other teams favor on accident.

    Seriously, I was hoping you would have some good points but it just came off as meh. I’m personally in the camp of the characters were sexualized, but that’s Japanese culture, it’s true to form here. I also wanted new outfits, but that’s just because that’s cool.

    Lunafreya did have some depth but they missed the mark on her. Could of had way more.

    Again, I wasn’t planning to enjoy your article from the beginning but I was going in open minded. You will hopefully grow as a journalist and get better.

    Until then, good luck. There’s always a next time kid.

    • I think Jay did more than alright, and considering the fact that his been with us for less than a year, his going to grow over time 😉

      • Zach Dygard

        Jeez your standards are that low… Wow that opens up a whole new world of insight about this place

        • Whatever you say *points at the door*

  • Zach Dygard

    This article is like the click bait stuff on Facebook (you know, the fake news) except at least they can hold someone’s attention. Only the most voracious antifeminist blinded from common sense will sit here and feel “ah, someone with my views” after reading this

    • Then leave and go else where, problem solved. No one is forcing you to read what we publish.

      • Zach Dygard

        Am I making you uncomfortable? I must have a point then!

        You do know this is the internet right? Only those with the very thickest of skins survive here, and you just showed yours twice.

        Once with the article, twice with the comments.

        Usually though if you survive here long enough you get a thicker skin. It’s inevitable when free speech bombards you like a 24 cannon broadside from a French warship in the 1700s.

        That’s what my free speech feels like eh?

        • Nope, I´m just amused by your high bullshit levels 😉 So you can talk as much trash as you want, because you´re just wasting your own time.

    • Jay Shay

      Clearly it’s holding your attention. You’ve been ranting about this for hours. You take up half of the comments section.

  • Gil

    Energetic characters?

    Those are girls such as Yuffie or Rikku. You can be energetic without having your boobs hang out and tanga straps showing over your tiny hotpants. I would have been fine with her dressing in a sexual way, if she had played more of a role. See, Lulu un FFX was quite sexy. And the girls in X-2 were so too. But at least they had depth and weren’t merely there to fill my car’s tank and scrub my car’s windows and give me some upgrades.
    As for Iris, she is just seriously annoying. The way she clung to Noctus during the first meeting already ticked me off. I tried to deny her her “date” in the town, she dragged me along anyway. When she said it was like a date, I had Noctis pull away from her and say “no, no it isn’t at all” and then SHE had the audacity to get mad and tell me I should just play along? Nu-uh, sorry lady, Noctus is not interested in you so stop hanging off of him like the spoiled brat you are.
    And Luna? She just feels too flat. She has decent potential, but from what I’ve seen in the game, I just feel no emotions for her. He just doesn’t seem real, especially since she has shown no flaws…she was constantly just the good, pretty, graceful, helpful and hardworking childhood love and we’re supposed to love her for that as well. But what about the bad parts, the ones that make her human? Like, compare her to the energetic Prompto, who actually has a huge complex about whether or not he is as worthy as the others and who is actually a deep, emotional thinker. He messes up sometimes and the others point that out to him as well. But Luna is just…nothing I can even remotely relate to (especially as a female).

    In short: Energetic? Fine. Slutty? No thanks. Pretend date with an immature brat? Nope, fuck that idea, I was glad to get rid of her. Want me to like Luna? Make her more human and focus more on her relationship with Noctus so that we can connect with her emotionally and actually feel something for her.

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