Why Video Game Breasts Physics Can Go Wrong
Breasts swing. They sag. They flop. They can move. Over the years, many games have tried to emulate the way breasts behave. There’s even a term for it: “Breast physics.”
If you’ve played games that have breast physics, you’ve probably seen how uncommon it is for games to show breasts that move like what they actually are: bags of fat affected by gravity. Instead, it’s more likely for a game to depict breasts as helium balloons that have minds of their own. Certain games have failed at rendering realistic breasts so widely that some people seem convinced that bad breast physics are the result of sexism, or of an industry that likes to objectify women.
I’ve seen unfair conjecture about whether or not developers have ever interacted with real-life breasts. I’ve seen people imply that developers simply don’t know how to properly characterize women in games, and that gaming’s ocean of unrealistic breasts is what happens when we have so few women developing games.
Are any of these sorts of claims true, I wondered? Plenty of people theorize about why games often feature bad breast physics, but there is little hard information about the actual breast-creation process. After looking into it a bit, I found that many amateur developers seemed to genuinely have a problem figuring out how to tackle breast physics in their games.
There are a startling number of forum posts and tutorials where people discuss the best ways to achieve good breast physics online. One person even created a four-part Powerpoint presentation titled “The Quest for Boob Jiggle In Unity.” People have developed specialized tools for other developers to use, to help demystify the enigma that is “how do breasts work.”
Meanwhile, veteran game developers have been messing around with the way breasts move for almost two decades now.
1992: It Begins
In 1992, a fighting game called Fatal Fury 2 was released. Described by some as a “blatant clone” of Street Fighter II, Fatal Fury 2 did actually have a few noteworthy quirks of its own: it was a gorgeous-looking game that allowed players to perform “desperation moves” when their health bar was low, and it gave players a chance to get out of danger quickly through a hopping mechanic.
But let’s be real. One of Fatal Fury 2’s biggest contributions to the medium was that it was the first game to introduce a character with breasts that moved on their own.