Adult Themes

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i think its all a complete load of bull (not ur argument but the media/lawsuits) i mean sueing a game the has sex in it i mean these games are like 18 anyway right!? we are aloud to have sex at 16 but watching it in an 18 aged game is too far?!

i mean comon porn is everywere for kids to see i dont think parents realise how young kids understand sex these days. and lets face it how many time do porn sites get sued? i mean im thinking of the free ones that anyone can access easily and no one makes a fuss about it. its just aload of bull and as someone said probly in the article its not the consumer that complain its just people who dont think its right. clearly the people who have played the game have no problem!!

further more i think age rating is a load of bull take for instance cod 4 a 16 right now cod5 has more gore (alot more) and its a 15.... right. it just comes down to how much you can pribe people or having a turn gore(in this case porn)off option. and since when did non games decide what should be in games, isnt it enough that in the church there are those who have never had sex telling others how to have sex. furthermore if a company gets sued for a sex game right do you know how high the sales will rise!!! exactly! you dont care about us you just want money for yourself!!

AlexFromOmaha:
Not only will you never get one, but it's been confirmed that the Great Firewall of Aussieland will be blocking everyone else's adult-only rated games.

The firewall will only affect those who don't know how to circumvent it. And circumventing it takes about 5 seconds to do a search on Google.

Basically grow up. You bastards. *angry face*

If it follows the same lines as the other types of censorable material in games, i.e. violence or swearing, as soon as the floodgates open on sex then there will be manhunt esque games with the option of rape! Which is probably more sick than grisly murders. This is because sex is connected to very strong emotions in us humans, unlike captain price topping a bad guy.

008Zulu:

AlexFromOmaha:
Not only will you never get one, but it's been confirmed that the Great Firewall of Aussieland will be blocking everyone else's adult-only rated games.

The firewall will only affect those who don't know how to circumvent it. And circumventing it takes about 5 seconds to do a search on Google.

The availability of illegal channels doesn't substantially influence legal ones (see, for example, American drug policy). Being able to VPN tunnel out for Japanese loli-hentai won't warm any legislative hearts to the idea of putting adult-themed games on store shelves.

Society itself as a whole can't separate sexuality and pornography. It's not just the gamers.

*sigh*

This argument gets brought up all the time, and the problem usually has nothing to do with the majority of gamers. I'm not going to reject everything in your article, because I think that any medium can be used to portray sensible an adult themes. No one thought comic books were good for anything until along came Alan Moore et al and suddenly we had graphic novels telling a deeply inclusive story. Everyone may hate Fahrenheit (Indigo Prophecy) but at the very least it tried to tell a story with some actual themes about right and wrong. Until the end, boy howdy.

Since this argument is apparently prevalent in Japan I can draw a fairly solid compaison to a well known phenomenon in the Western media. Young boy, acknowledged as the quiet type, introverted and a little weird, eventually gets tired of beig bullied for every single day of his adolescent life, with a systemn that doesn't care and freely available weaponry, buys a gun and goes on a shooting rampage. It is found that young boy at one point in his life walked into a video games shop and looked at a Wii archery game. Clearly his morals have been corrupted by the deadly gaming society and all games featuring violence should be destroyed.

Carry this argument over. Young boy rapes/sexually molests/makes an inappropriate comment to a classmate. It is found that at one point he played a game which featured a kiss between two consenting adults. His morals have clearly been OH DEAR!

It sounds ridiculous, but this is often the comparison that is being made. The other problems revolve (and I am right in saying this) around American censorship laws. A censorship law can tell you a lot about what a society thinks is acceptable or unacceptable, and the American censorship laws are far more concerned with sexual activity than violence (puritanical society, deeply Catholic etc). A game with huge amounts of violence may rate no more than an R (British 15) whereas even a hint of skin and you're getting an M (British 18,-ish). Since by this point I doubt anyone's still reading my post I'll just try and wrap up.

Gaming cannot change its image in the same way that comic books were not able to change their image. What it needs is a dedicated group of people, unconcerned with lawsuits and rabid religious crazies, who are willing to keep pushing that boundary until it breaks. But what that also takes are people willing to buy those games, which is where we come in, but of course this becomes a vicious circle. If the games are made and bought, then society will continue to condemn us who play and make them. Basically we're never going to see this issue resolved, but if we're willing to continue pushing at it, maybe the next generation can see some actual improvement.

THAC0:
I really liked this article. I agree with all its points.

I think that part of the problem is that games are just now able to provide characters that are complex enough to even have sexual interests.

but yeah, this is a pretty much untouched narrative tool that games just haven't taken advantage off, beyond old school "beat up street gang to save your girlfriend" kind of ways.

Characters had the potential to be complex even back in the days of MUDs. You don't need modern technology to write a good story.
The first game I recall having "adult" themes was The Longest Journey. It was all pretty minor, but it was there: your landlady mentioning how awesome her sex with her girlfriend was, and some guy asking you if you were a virgin.

scnj:
I think Mass Effect was a step in the right direction. It wasn't just sex for the sake of sex like Leisure Suit Larry, but it was a genuine emotional connection that built up as the game progressed. What games need is characters that have more complex emotions and then introduce it as 'making love' rather than a 'quickie behind the bike sheds'.

No, it was an emotional connection for the sake of having one, seriously. Both Ashley and the alien girl NEVER made any comments and barely even talked yet they were having a cat fight about me.. Wheres the logic in that

Any who, after two screwed up posts I have something to say. I don't really care sex or no sex... I mean I play games because I think explosions are pretty. In my opinion violence in a video game can serve as a good way to blow off steam (if your not a child). Sex not so much, it would be for the sake of characters, and story and blah blah blah. I play a game for fun. If you want a big complex story BUY A FRICKIN NOVEL... And please stop stereotyping all teenagers... I'm 15 and I don't act like these "teenagers" you seem to be talking about.

I dont really care for sex in games, not my cup of tea. But, it can be done well..even the original leisure suit larry games(which are now looked at as some horrid "porn game" from the past) weren't extremely sexual, they were very-tounge-in-cheek and funny. The real problem with this is not the "sex" itself , it is with the way "sex done right" in a game perpetuates "broish" behavior, IE "a conversation with a woman is merely a way to get sex". This is still a pretty new issue when it comes to debating if "doing sex right" is really any better then not doing it right, the industry still has plenty of time to mull over this issue and take it from there. I would say personally that in the long run sex done right in games doesn't bother me, but that is because i have a soul. But i think there are some serious quandaries any company should think about before they decide to have a sexual element in their game.

I'mANinja:
I mean I play games because I think explosions are pretty.

it would be for the sake of characters, and story and blah blah blah.

And please stop stereotyping all teenagers... I'm 15 and I don't act like these "teenagers" you seem to be talking about.

Also, ^ contradiction much?

*Giggity...giggity... gig-gig...giggity*

That aside I can't really bring myself to care about sex in games. If it's there I will giggle immaturely as I enjoy my hobby. If it's not I will not be surprised or disappointed.

PS: *Goo*

AlexFromOmaha:

SL33TBL1ND:

bjj hero:
We need to start with strictly enforced age ratings on games. This will help to show that there is a difference between adult and childrens game.

And Australia needs an 18+ rating, why the hell don't we have one!

Not only will you never get one, but it's been confirmed that the Great Firewall of Aussieland will be blocking everyone else's adult-only rated games.

Thats why I joined the no Clean-Feed steam group! Censoring the internet is not good, controlling information is not got and telling people whether or not the can watch porn is just plain wrong!

I'm hoping that Heavy Rain will do this.

Surely the nude patches for Fallout 3 and others can be examined as reactions to the problem and not symptoms thereof?

raunchysandwich:
I failed to gather anything from this article other than that Jade Raymond is hot and that your were a college drop out. Not to be harsh but, what were you trying to achieve with mentioning these things?

You can rest assured that 80% of the readers have initiated a google image search for 'jade raymond.'

Damn you! How did you know??? :o

ALL they bloody stuff is incredably true but i never heard that about the pee pees but well the stuff is imposible to say it's rong! :)

I think this article, and others like it, forget that the people you are talking about, the ones you demand "grow up", are in fact still very young. All the crude comments in threads and on Live? Kids. So asking them to grow up is a bit dumb. As for the rest of us, we have grown up, so quit paying so much attention to the real kids.

Why?

That will be the most basic question to pop up when we gamers say we want to see more sex in a game.
And honestly, why do we? Just because "we're adults" doesn't mean anything. The integration of sex in video games might mean a bump up to AO ratings for games, which many companies will simply not sell. Wal-mart won't even sell AO games.. Com'on.

I think that if gamers put sex in, it had better be for a reason, otherwise parents and the media will say that all us gamers are perverts and that we just want sex for sex's sake.
Mass Effect's sex was there because of an intense relationship. If you put a sex scene in say... Grand Theft Auto where Niko goes and picks up and hooker and you see his European penis pushing in and out of.. well you get the point. If gamers want to have sex, we need to make sure our devs put it in the games in a more classy and believable way.

And in all honesty, I'd rather just kill things and beat up people than see boobies or a guy's dong.

look all i can say is sex is a part of life and as long as its not robots making every part of the game there will be sex or secret refrences in games. and in japan they do pretty good with sex games (by that i mean they sell alot)

This article is based on a few underlying assumptions I'd like to dispute.

1) Sex/Sexual tension/Sexual themes help make a well rounded character or drive plot.
2) Sex has a place in video games.
3) Sex/Sexual themes can add a new element to video games.
4) Sex/Sexual themes are something we should be exposed to in video games.

Has sex EVER defined a character? I doubt that some sex-based act or ideal has ever been the reason we loved, hated, or loved-to-hate a character. I personally can't think of a single memorable character in film, TV, or video games that I remember because of something sexual.

So if we eliminate character development from the list of reasons to include sex, what's left? Plot or some sort of mini-game gameplay element. Using sex to drive a plot is a poor use of sex for a variety of reasons. Foremost among them is that you enter a zone that "Pulp Fiction" typified all too well and you also enter a moral gray area where children (because children will get their hands on these games) are participating in a plot that is far beyond their maturity level.

Beyond that, immersion in a video game is one of the key factors that draws people in and keeps them playing, but no amount of immersion will ever make me believe that two graphic models on a screen getting steamy is real or intriguing. It's like saying animals procreating is attractive. The uncanny valley is just too strong here and non-humans having sex (explicit or implicit) is more repulsive than any other impulse. If you don't believe that, then you've either never been intimate with another person, or you've got something loose that's genetic, or both. If it isn't real humans being intimate, it's just...weird.

So if all this is true, why would we possibly want to add sex into a video game? A cheap mini-game gimmick like GTA:SA? What a waste of programming resources. If a developer is seriously considering putting sex into a video game they should take a step back and perhaps devote those resources to making a better game. Lord knows they're attempts lately have been pretty pitiful. I haven't seen a decent console game in who knows how long (and as a PS3 owner that saddens me, guess I'll keep watching BRDs).

See, I can think of a few cases where sexuality was tastefully made a core part of a plot. Firefly, for instance, had plot points driven quite frequently by sexuality, and the characters are richer for it. There's no on-screen sex, though. There's very little on-screen kissing, even. Still, the adults watching it know exactly what's going on (and the kids probably don't). In a lot of ways, the focus on character interaction is what elevated the series above pseudotechnobabble plastic forehead alien space soap operas like Star Trek, and it could not have been done without frequent anchors in character sexuality.

I think the most important part to note there is that there was no on-screen sex. I do have trouble finding a reason to have two polygons doing the horizontal tango instead of a strongly framed fade-to-black. I suppose if plot development required something happening in mid-act, then sure, but I get the impression that that's not the case with any recent examples.

VanityGirl:
And in all honesty, I'd rather just kill things and beat up people than see boobies or a guy's dong.

You're not the only one, but you are the last one at the time of my writing to point this out.

This bothers me slightly. How is it that we have advanced from a game of tennis to beating people up in various violent ways? And suddenly, we get the flash of morality that goes "No! That poor little prostitute!"

Movies have moved on. So has TV programs. What makes games different?

I'm confounded at this double standard. Violence is a-okay but sex is not?

Sex is tasteless, you say. I'll state mindless violence falls about the same area as sex when it comes to taste. My opinion, but last time I checked, murder and rape get the same sentence (here, anyway) when trialled.

Sex in games today, are put in as an afterthought, not being thought through. A couple years back, violence was just exploding ships.

Violence has come a long way from the days of tennis. Why not give sex the same chance to evolve, to finesse itself?

Looking for a mature gaming take on sex? Check THIS out:

MASQ

I don't think sex in gaming needs to be a meaningful experience every time. In reality, many of us have been pretty casual with our own sexuality, and reflecting this in gaming as a possibility seems like a good idea too. My character in Fable 2 (one of them anyway) was a womanizer. If I showed up in town for a sale and it was a few ours before the shops were open I'd grab the local bar wench and have at her. Sure, there was nothing to see, but at least I had, to an extent, the option.

My take is that sex in games will and must evolve in order for gaming to survive. The core audience are adults, and just as cinema had to evolve with how it censored itself so must gaming. I remember back in the 80s when the song "I want your sex" was not being aired on American music stations for a short time because of their concern with the use of that word and the theme of the music. We've come a long way (I'm American, so I can really only observe things from my side).

Bare bodies were inevitable in film, as were depictions of sex. Gaming, as a medium of entertainment, has started to and eventually will get there as well. I loved Indigo Prophecy, it was a really fun and really exciting game that told a fascinating story (I love doomsday stories), and it not only had nudity, but it also had a few mini-games that allowed characters to interact sexually. I thought they were appropriate, and at least as well done as any R-rated movie may have portrayed it.

Maybe the archaic notion that gaming is for kids will vanish when those stubborn gray-headed politicians do?

Icehearted:
Maybe the archaic notion that gaming is for kids will vanish when those stubborn gray-headed politicians do?

Politicians are elected by appealing to the largest common demominator; religious groups. Theres nothing religious groups hate more is people acting in accordance with the individual belief system rather than a collective, and as a collective they don't like nudity and sexuality.

MelasZepheos:
Snip

Ah, glad that you and I agree in our blame of the Puritans. XD

Dooly95: I also agree with you. I love to kill things in my video games but I don't pretend that it is somehow less horrid than banging some chic. I've been assaulted and I've had an orgasm. I've always preferred the orgasm and I am sure a significant percentage would have the same preference. So why is the violence less threatening? XD

Disclaimer: Yes I realize that one sentence reads in a way that suggests I am a masochist. I laughed like a child too but that is not the case.

All the points I wanted to make have already been posted, I think =/

DeathWyrmNexus:
I've been assaulted and I've had an orgasm.
(. . .)
Disclaimer: Yes I realize that one sentence reads in a way that suggests I am a masochist. I laughed like a child too but that is not the case.

The term you're looking for is biastophiliac :V

I don't play games so I can take part in a interactive Soap Opera.
If I want a game that has sex in it, I will then play the relationship game we all know, love and hate.

Sex in video-games doesn't make it more mature.
How it is portrayed would make it mature. Let's say your playing a new Jedi game. The character your playing is married and she and her husband has conversations that show their affection without showing an outright liplock or sex action. I would accept that more than a cutscene of guy and girl kissing. I can see the love in their actions and their conservations and not in an outright presentation. That would be maturity in gaming.

Think Mass Effect just showed gamers a one night stand. If the game development community wants to show maturity then they have to stop thinking of porn and start thinking of relationships.

To be fair, Jade Raymond is fucking shit hot.

Fratboy reinforcing negative stereotypes. News at eleven.

Being one of those fabled "Europeans" I see this article as at best misguided. Sex defining people is, well, a statement defining the writer far better than sex defining people, for one.

And we need more sex and sexual tension in games... why? Games are just fine for adults in Europe as is, and sex in games wouldn't affect that one way or other. Causing cultural change by trying to shock people into accepting something is for adults... just doesn't seem like a working plan. If it makes the game better sure, but most games wouldn't benefit from the addition of sex.

More complex moral themes would certainly be welcome - but I doubt that the games industry is capable of actually creating them. Most games with any system relating to morals either cartoonish evil versus saints, or alternatively makes hard moral judgments classifying acts either as "evil" or "good" completely according to the writer's own morals. Neither of these is anywhere close to a satisfying experience.

And as a sidenote: The Mass Effect furor was doubly amusing given that an earlier game by the same developers allowed you to get a character pregnant, albeit without a 5-second clip tamer than most pop-up ads.

I agree with something that has been said a couple of times.

Really, the majority of kids have unsupervised access to the Internet all the time. It is just plain silly to be concerned about "game content" at this point. Adults Only rated games cannot even be sold at (physical) retailers.

Considering everyone is a few seconds away from such classy websites as "Strangled Bitches" I say any uproar over game content is just... "quaint?"

does anybody remember seeing david cheung's "buy jade's game!" comic?

not entirely relevant, but this threead made me remember it.

I hope shes never seen it, i cant imagine she'd be entirely pleased

I'd like to clarify, my position at least, for all you people out there saying sex is unnecessary in games. To an extent, I agree with you. When it comes to gaming for the fun of it, there are some fantastic games out there, and our current methods of game creation and development work fine. There are times when I just want to have pure, ridiculous fun, and in such instances sex can be a totally pointless addition, done badly, and barely above the level of pornography insofar as it's sex for sex and nothing else.

However, 'just for fun' is not my only reason for getting involved in media forms, but in games it's the only one that's catered to. If I see a game out that looks like a barrel of fun, I'll get it; I might look up some reviews, ask my friends, wait for a price drop (maybe), but it's fairly reliable that I'll get it.

The reason to include sex and 'maturity' is for the other (or one of the other) reasons to play games; storytelling. It's a good indication if I see or hear about a game that sounds fun that I will buy it. But if I saw a game that looked like a fantastic story, good immersion, character design and development, even adequate gameplay, adequate graphics, I would be on it so fast you'd think I wasn't a near-broke uni student.

So, sex. This is the point:

Deviluk:
If it follows the same lines as the other types of censorable material in games, i.e. violence or swearing, as soon as the floodgates open on sex then there will be manhunt esque games with the option of rape! Which is probably more sick than grisly murders. This is because sex is connected to very strong emotions in us humans, unlike captain price topping a bad guy.

The difference between sex and violence and why violence is out running the streets while sex is locked in the cupboard under the stairs (metaphorically, of course) is because of the emotions involved. It's probably to some extent to do with desensitisation, but what do we think of killing an enemy in a game, or seeing one killed in a movie, or reading it in a book?
Remember on Austin Powers when it showed the families and friends of those two killed henchman receiving news of their deaths? This exemplifies my point because we have to have the consequences of violence made explicit like this for us to begin to care about murdering nameless henchman #782 as we climb the pile of bodies to victory.

On the other hand, sex is an emotive subject, a very emotive one. In terms of censorship it's probably as much if not more the fault of the shut-in religious fundamentalist types who demand sex be done within marriage, once, with the lights off and you aren't allowed to enjoy it either, but in the category of its relevance in games is when the emotional connection comes to the fore.

As has been stated several times, it doesn't need to be a full-on sex scene; the implication of it is enough. And the implication of the inclusion of sex in such a way is that videogame characters are (at fucking last, speaking as a member of the halo generation) beginning to have enough depth, and the stories are becoming involving enough that the inclusion of sex can not only be relevant, but used well.

It's not the fault of the gamers imo, it's the devs and the moron shutins who spend all day plastered to fox news waiting for the slightest glimmer of sex in videogames so they can complain about it.

People here say sex is unnecessary for games that are just pure mindless fun? You're absolutely right and more power to you.

But what sex IS relevant to is the type of game (sadly only hypothetical at this point) that is more than either mindless fun produced by indie devs or mindless copy-pastes of successful formulas produced by companies who sell their ingenuity and 'mature' (in this sense) content for (somewhat ironically) 'guaranteed sells'.

Finally, and totally irrelevantly, would you believe this is my first (that I can recall) comment on the escapist? But I gather that in cases where comments extend more than two paragraphs it is customary to finish up with the phrase 'wow. long rant is long'. So congratulations if you made it to the end, go and get yourself a biscuit or something.

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