One of the “Big Tasks” I had in Star Wars: The Old Republic, was to establish the polyflow of all body types.
In a project this big, it’s truly important to find ways to save time anywhere possible. So, in the case of the different body types, I wanted to find a polygon layout that would work well on the big dudes or on the skinny girls, and anything in between. This saves time in many different ways.
Having a unique mesh allowed us to have the exact same UV layout for all bodies, saving texturing work. Saved time on skinning for animation. Saved time creating the different attachments, consistent with each and all body type.
Besides the base bodies, I was also responsible for creating all the main archetypes of our garment system.
All these parts are interchangeable, and made for all body types, at the end, there are hundreds of possible combinations.