First, Hideo Kojima wanted the mute female sniper of Metal Gear Solid V to appear "erotic." That was either a poor choice of words, or poor translation, but he evidently wanted the art director to sex her up to encourage cosplay. Or figurine sales. Well, now Kojima is Tweeting, and says we have it all wrong.
I know there's people concerning about "Quiet" but don't worry. I created her character as an antithesis to the women characters (cont) — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) September 7, 2013
appeared in the past fighting game who are excessively exposed. "Quiet" who doesn't have a word will be teased in the story as well. (Cont) — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) September 7, 2013
(Cont) But once you recognise the secret reason for her exposure, you will feel ashamed of your words & deeds. — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) September 7, 201
OK, this may be another situation where the best word wasn't chosen. The "secret reason" for her revealing attire notwithstanding, Kojima is definitely drawing a comparison between Quiet and how female fighting game characters have been depicted. Fine. "Antithesis" may not be the best word here — visually, the true antithesis of a sexed-up female fighting game character would be, like, Jessica Tandy in Driving Miss Daisy.
Does he mean "parody" instead of antithesis? Who knows. The mystery deepens with this puzzle:
Theme of "MGSV" is "GENE"⇒"MEME"⇒"SCENE"⇒"PEACE"⇒"RACE". Story touches the misunderstanding, prejudice, hatred, conflict caused by (cont) — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) September 7, 2013
Ohhhhhhh ... K...?
the difference of language, race, custom, culture, and preference. (Cont) — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) September 7, 2013
(Cont) The response of "Quiet" disclosure few days ago incited by the net is exactly what "MGSV" itself is. — HIDEO_KOJIMA (@HIDEO_KOJIMA_EN) September 7, 2013
At a live demonstration of Metal Gear Solid V, Stefanie Joosten, the actor behind Quiet, said that "Quiet has reasons for wearing what she does," but didn't elaborate beyond that.
Kojima appears to be responding to criticism (a Halo designer called out the character design as "disgusting" on Twitter yesterday) more than explaining his character's costume design. I'll be interested to know what it is, in this character's story, that leads her to go to a battlefield scantily clad, and how that is a statement of empowerment or one that repudiates other female combatants. Right now it sounds like a bunch of defensive, retrofitted nonsense.