Videogame Sex

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Videogame Sex

Let's talk about sex, baby.

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sooo reported!

Lol jkjk but eww?

Noo... sex should be for real people only. If you need something to uhh...'frap' to...there's way better things than a friggin game.

I almost thought it said, 'the hand problem' in the tags.

I believe the game you're looking for is called The Witcher.

I always found it strange that Kratos had the time to stop and do the dirty with a couple of women that were laying around, I mean in the second game he had just been thrown a couple of hundred feet and crashed through the ceiling, you'd think he'd be more worried about getting stepped on or something.

Great article, but people are always going to be a little skittish when it comes to sex in videogames. The problem could possibly be rectified if someone sent a few Bouncing Bette's to the game developers studios during production of a new game.

Someone needs to watch that episode of 30 Rock where whatshisname tries to make a sex video game.
UNCANNY VALLEY NEEEEEERAAAOOOWWWW*boom*
The big problem I have is trying to project it on the player. The scene in Farenheit was semi-ok since it was a very detached cutscene. Trying to get me involved makes a lot of low assumptions of the player. Besides, there's this assumption that I find the character 'sexy' anyway. If I don't, then you're really up a creek.
You ever notice in the typical action movie, it's the comical, dumb thugs who are distracted by sex (passing red dress, etc) while the hard-ass hero ignores it and kicks their ass? We enjoy seeing the distraction on-film, but the protagonist doesn't need to grope over it.

But if we were like Australia, we wouldn't have any sex OR violence in our games!

Yea, man, yea. Those pixels are so hawt... oh yea.

I actually like the way BioWare handles sex in video games. With its two most recent entries, ME and Dragon Age: Origins, it treats sex as one more facet of the narrative and characterization. What's so wrong with that? Then again, I'm female and asexual to boot, so the amount of time I think about sex is pretty minuscule compared to that of the averaged teenage boy. Which apparently is the demographic games like God of War cater to. At least BioWare is fairly respectful to the women involved. They're always treated as actual people instead of simply sex objects.

Bioware needs to make the sex in there games worth all the time and effort I put into romancing up my party members.

high_castle:
I actually like the way BioWare handles sex in video games. With its two most recent entries, ME and Dragon Age: Origins, it treats sex as one more facet of the narrative and characterization. What's so wrong with that? Then again, I'm female and asexual to boot, so the amount of time I think about sex is pretty minuscule compared to that of the averaged teenage boy. Which apparently is the demographic games like God of War cater to. At least BioWare is fairly respectful to the women involved. They're always treated as actual people instead of simply sex objects.

Exactly this, minus the female bit.
I'm just a very feminine dude.

I honestly don't want to see sex in games at all.

What's the big deal, Mass Effect said they would have sex in game, but it was just cut to black. I'm not too fussed about it at the moment because full frontal nudity is a long way off in mainstream games.

yer im very disappointed in dragon ages sex choices, right now ive spent most of my time whit a bitch who oppose every decision i make, an older wise, smart, funny, experienced women, and a boytoy whom i have served in the army whit, and they will only let me have sex whit the bitch, and the worst part is, i dont really have a choice, when we sleep together i get approval from her which will give me game play beneficial, in theory a great idea, but it means im prostituting my character for mana.

Tongues and cheeks not withstanding despite any potential sexual applications, I actually think I might agree with the whole "rewarding" players with sex scenes thing, insofar as any bit of story or writing should be considered a reward. That is, as long as there'd be the possibility of having good writing instead of just IKEA erotica dolled up with a bunch of clumsy metaphors, which could just as easily be applied as punishment, though I never remember deserving such, alas, the world of storytelling can be a cold and cruel place at times.

Of course, what would constitute good erotic fiction is an entirely different and convoluted matter, and I dare say more than a little subjective, so I won't be adding any real substance to the comment thread. Neener neener. (Not to imply anyone wanted it. Or indeed that anyone would have gotten it in any amount of verbosity from me.)

One thing I've always thought is that there isn't enough sex in games, simply because it restricts how seriously you can take the in-story romances. This isn't about sex, it's about love and how it contributes to the plot. I can only think of four games with serious in-game romances which actually culminated in a love scene- Xenogears, Persona 3 FES, Persona 4 and Prince of Persia: Sands of Time (I'm not sure what happened at the end of Warrior Within and in any case, the Prince and Kaileena never had a "romance" anyway). The Xenogears case is an especially good one- Xenogears is a particularly mature game, despite the 2D anime sprite-ish graphics, and the love scene (completely non-explicit, there's an anime cutscene where Fei and Elly kiss then we cut back to ingame graphics with Fei getting dressed while Elly is lying naked in bed) is the culmination of a love story which has been central to the plot for most of the game. Persona 3 was actually kind of mind-blowing for letting your high-school aged character sleep with up to 5 different girls (6 in the FES edition). Sure it was really only implied in most cases (Elizabeth's, on the other hand, was rather explicit) with a fade to black in the girl's room while you're told you "shared a tender moment" with the girl, but it was pretty obvious what they meant. However in all cases these scenes came at the end of their social link, which means you've spent a lot of time getting to know and building up a relationship with these girls- you're not just boning them because they're hot and in fact, THEY come on to YOU in their love scenes. Of course, this does mean that if you want 100% completion you basically have to cheat on them, which is why Persona 4 allowed you to opt to keep the relationship platonic for any of the girls you could romance (while still allowing you to sleep around if you chose).

The majority of other romances, especially in JRPGs, have all the maturity of a kids cartoon- the most erotic thing you'll see the characters do is kiss, if they're lucky; FFX for example had The Spring scene, although this isn't a game I think would have been improved by a love scene as Tidus and Yuna's romance was fairly juvenile, like a young crush and was pretty much fine as it was. I see this as a carry-over from anime storytelling where the culmination of a passionate romance is often no more than seeing the characters embrace for the first time. My thoughts are just that sex is a powerful and dramatic thing which should far more utilized in love stories, but guardedly. When you can bone practically any female that crosses your path (see: The Witcher) there's absolutely no emotional attachment formed there. To be honest, it's best left to compulsory or linear stories as making it optional generally reduces the amount of depth that's allowed to be assigned to the relationship before it becomes intrusive on the storyline: Persona 3 was able to get away with this because your character was just trying to carry on a normal school life by day while fighting monsters by night, but in Xenogears the relationship between Fei and Elly had gone back hundreds of years through reincarnation and had impacted massively on the back story, as well as the antagonists of the game.

hahahaha... well, while I generally agree with what you're saying, this line brought tears of mirth to my eyes:

We should be using sex as a reward mechanism. If I'm going to spend two hours chainsawing sixty or seventy guys in half, then for God's sake let me spend even a fraction of that time having sex with ten or twenty attractive partners of my preferred gender, one every few minutes. Would that be so wrong?

I for one, would think that would create a hilarious game, where all you do is kill and fuck, kill and fuck.. Talk about sending a mixed moral message... I mean, call me a Freud, but I think having sex be a reward for killing people is a pretty slippery slope to the worst possible thing ever.

high_castle:
I actually like the way BioWare handles sex in video games. With its two most recent entries, ME and Dragon Age: Origins, it treats sex as one more facet of the narrative and characterization. What's so wrong with that? Then again, I'm female and asexual to boot, so the amount of time I think about sex is pretty minuscule compared to that of the averaged teenage boy. Which apparently is the demographic games like God of War cater to. At least BioWare is fairly respectful to the women involved. They're always treated as actual people instead of simply sex objects.

This - and I'm someone taken aback by John Scott's statement:

Bioware operates at a different extreme. It uses sex in its narratives in some misguided act of defiance to help make its fairly tiresome case that this is real storytelling here, people, okay, a case which I am obviously yet to be convinced of. Watching a short clip of my character snogging with a blue alien to a smooth jazz soundtrack in between repairing malfunctioning robots and selling story tips to journalists while apparently procrastinating on the whole universe-going-up-in-flames front - well, let's just say the PG-13 blue alien sex didn't fool me into thinking I was suddenly watching "The Sopranos" or "Battlestar Galactica."

Seriously, I'm getting pissed off with game folks going 'oh, it never matched what we see in TV in terms of quality' - I loved Battlestar, but I don't see why some really great games are cast down against it. Ok, the vast majority of games don't live up to Battlestar - nor do the vast majority of other TV programs.

Bleh, it increasing seems to me Scott is abit of a blow hard - the only project I've seen him directly linked with is the "Pirates of the Burning Sea's".

MaxTheReaper:
I honestly don't want to see sex in games at all.

What he said.

I agree to an extent, it should be a totally optional reward though. Hey, some people get it, others don't. Nice article though.

Thaius:

What he said.

And it's not just me being against sex (which I am.)

But I don't play games so I can do shit I can do in real life.
I could bullshit my way into anywhere I wanted to and then I could bullshit some chick into sleeping with me.
I don't want to, but I surely could.
People are casual enough about it nowadays that I probably wouldn't even have to try.

But without a whole lot of planning, I can't go out and kill someone.
And I surely can't go out and kill dragons with fireballs.

I don't mind realism, but I don't want to play "OFFICE SIM 6: This Time, It's Personal: Revenge of the Rogue Copier."

...Actually, I take it back.
That would be better than most games on the market.

MaxTheReaper:

Thaius:

What he said.

And it's not just me being against sex (which I am.)

But I don't play games so I can do shit I can do in real life.
I could bullshit my way into anywhere I wanted to and then I could bullshit some chick into sleeping with me.
I don't want to, but I surely could.
People are casual enough about it nowadays that I probably wouldn't even have to try.

But without a whole lot of planning, I can't go out and kill someone.
And I surely can't go out and kill dragons with fireballs.

I don't mind realism, but I don't want to play "OFFICE SIM 6: This Time, It's Personal: Revenge of the Rogue Copier."

...Actually, I take it back.
That would be better than most games on the market.

My main problem is just that sex is almost always a crutch to get some stupid guys to buy a game. It works the same way in movies. Storytelling in general suffers from overuse of sex simply to get in an audience: the movie industry has been amazingly negatively affected by this literary crutch. I don't want video games to go down the same path.

Besides, to be honest, most arguments I've heard for why sex should be in video games are just attempts to mask lust with a noble cause. Someone wants to see boobs in a game, so they pretend they're trying to "further the cause of the medium" or something. Sigh...

Dammit John, a little warning might be in order when you post links, man! I'm never going to be able to play Half-Life 2 again without thinking about nipples! Ok lets be fair, I'm a guy so I think about them anyway, but Alyx? NooOOOOoOoOOooo!!! Its... Its... Its just WRONG.

MaxTheReaper:

Thaius:

What he said.

And it's not just me being against sex (which I am.)

But I don't play games so I can do shit I can do in real life.
I could bullshit my way into anywhere I wanted to and then I could bullshit some chick into sleeping with me.
I don't want to, but I surely could.
People are casual enough about it nowadays that I probably wouldn't even have to try.

But without a whole lot of planning, I can't go out and kill someone.
And I surely can't go out and kill dragons with fireballs.

I don't mind realism, but I don't want to play "OFFICE SIM 6: This Time, It's Personal: Revenge of the Rogue Copier."

...Actually, I take it back.
That would be better than most games on the market.

Thaius:

My main problem is just that sex is almost always a crutch to get some stupid guys to buy a game. It works the same way in movies. Storytelling in general suffers from overuse of sex simply to get in an audience: the movie industry has been amazingly negatively affected by this literary crutch. I don't want video games to go down the same path.

Besides, to be honest, most arguments I've heard for why sex should be in video games are just attempts to mask lust with a noble cause. Someone wants to see boobs in a game, so they pretend they're trying to "further the cause of the medium" or something. Sigh...

Honestly, I don't see why all the hate towards sex (expect in cases like Bayonetta). I don't see people bemoaning sex in films, books, songs, painting, or other media and art forms, so why not games? Sex is apart of the human condition, so why is it so 'wrong'? (aside from uncanny valley sex bots - ewww).

Anywho, someone who can speak better than me:

Thaius:

My main problem is just that sex is almost always a crutch to get some stupid guys to buy a game. It works the same way in movies. Storytelling in general suffers from overuse of sex simply to get in an audience: the movie industry has been amazingly negatively affected by this literary crutch. I don't want video games to go down the same path.

Besides, to be honest, most arguments I've heard for why sex should be in video games are just attempts to mask lust with a noble cause. Someone wants to see boobs in a game, so they pretend they're trying to "further the cause of the medium" or something. Sigh...

Finally!
Weak characterization is not excused because you threw tits on the screen.
That just makes it worse.

And yeah, nothing says "I want videogames to be thought of as a mature medium!" like "put some tits in it!"

Doug:

Honestly, I don't see why all the hate towards sex (expect in cases like Bayonetta). I don't see people bemoaning sex in films, books, songs, painting, or other media and art forms, so why not games? Sex is apart of the human condition, so why is it so 'wrong'? (aside from uncanny valley sex bots - ewww).

Anywho, someone who can speak better than me:

Actually, we were just bemoaning the use of sex in movies.
You didn't read it very clearly?

And yes, it is natural, but you guys are so obsessed over it that it's just unhealthy.
And frankly, a little creepy.

Anyon eelse have the giggles, that the name of the write, article name what ever is called

HARD Problem?

And he's coincidentally talking about sex?

*Insert Comedy Snare drum noise HERE*

Doug:

MaxTheReaper:

Thaius:

What he said.

And it's not just me being against sex (which I am.)

But I don't play games so I can do shit I can do in real life.
I could bullshit my way into anywhere I wanted to and then I could bullshit some chick into sleeping with me.
I don't want to, but I surely could.
People are casual enough about it nowadays that I probably wouldn't even have to try.

But without a whole lot of planning, I can't go out and kill someone.
And I surely can't go out and kill dragons with fireballs.

I don't mind realism, but I don't want to play "OFFICE SIM 6: This Time, It's Personal: Revenge of the Rogue Copier."

...Actually, I take it back.
That would be better than most games on the market.

Thaius:

My main problem is just that sex is almost always a crutch to get some stupid guys to buy a game. It works the same way in movies. Storytelling in general suffers from overuse of sex simply to get in an audience: the movie industry has been amazingly negatively affected by this literary crutch. I don't want video games to go down the same path.

Besides, to be honest, most arguments I've heard for why sex should be in video games are just attempts to mask lust with a noble cause. Someone wants to see boobs in a game, so they pretend they're trying to "further the cause of the medium" or something. Sigh...

Honestly, I don't see why all the hate towards sex (expect in cases like Bayonetta). I don't see people bemoaning sex in films, books, songs, painting, or other media and art forms, so why not games? Sex is apart of the human condition, so why is it so 'wrong'? (aside from uncanny valley sex bots - ewww).

Anywho, someone who can speak better than me:

Well my point wasn't so much about it being "wrong," just that it's a literary crutch that just holds back the quality of a narrative. Max said it well: "Weak characterization is not excused because you threw tits on the screen. That just makes it worse."

But to answer your question, no one I know of views sex as wrong in and of itself. What is a common belief, however, is that it means something: many people (including me) look at sex as something to be treasured, not just a social activity on the level of scratching someone's back. So the thing isn't that it's morally wrong, it's that sex is belittled by our culture. Something special has been tarnished. And this is the case in culture as a whole: advertising, movies, books, and games. Our culture just attacks games more because they're new is all, but the basic view isn't solely against games.

I'm not trying to convince you of anything, just stating the reasoning behind the ideals that you questioned: that's the thinking behind it.

I like what Bioware did in Dragon Age: Origins.

Also, does anyone remember Phantasmagoria: A Puzzle of Flesh?

Thaius:

Doug:
-Mostly snipped for space-

Well my point wasn't so much about it being "wrong," just that it's a literary crutch that just holds back the quality of a narrative. Max said it well: "Weak characterization is not excused because you threw tits on the screen. That just makes it worse."

But to answer your question, no one I know of views sex as wrong in and of itself. What is a common belief, however, is that it means something: many people (including me) look at sex as something to be treasured, not just a social activity on the level of scratching someone's back. So the thing isn't that it's morally wrong, it's that sex is belittled by our culture. Something special has been tarnished. And this is the case in culture as a whole: advertising, movies, books, and games. Our culture just attacks games more because they're new is all, but the basic view isn't solely against games.

I'm not trying to convince you of anything, just stating the reasoning behind the ideals that you questioned: that's the thinking behind it.

Ah, I see - well, the mindless pandering to sex appeal to sell anything does annoy me; I just read your statements as saying, effectively, "Sex should never be mentioned in games" and as you hadn't said anything about other mediums, I assumed it was limited to games.

Overall, I think most uses of sex in culture are unnecessary, I think its a key part of culture to at least acknowledge sex in some ways and more in some conditions.

FAP FAP FAP FAP

Hail Sharess goddess of pleasure and perversion!

I personal think that sex in a video game is a waste of time and money. Yeah i love scantly clad ladies doing something erotic but not in a video game. Yeah Lara Croft looks kinda hot but who cares.. i just wana play a video game, if i wanted something sexy id go on the internet or find my gf. I think devs need to focos on the more important aspects of a video game like gameplay, graphics, and sound.A sexy main character will never be important to me.

Doug:

Thaius:

Doug:
-Mostly snipped for space-

Well my point wasn't so much about it being "wrong," just that it's a literary crutch that just holds back the quality of a narrative. Max said it well: "Weak characterization is not excused because you threw tits on the screen. That just makes it worse."

But to answer your question, no one I know of views sex as wrong in and of itself. What is a common belief, however, is that it means something: many people (including me) look at sex as something to be treasured, not just a social activity on the level of scratching someone's back. So the thing isn't that it's morally wrong, it's that sex is belittled by our culture. Something special has been tarnished. And this is the case in culture as a whole: advertising, movies, books, and games. Our culture just attacks games more because they're new is all, but the basic view isn't solely against games.

I'm not trying to convince you of anything, just stating the reasoning behind the ideals that you questioned: that's the thinking behind it.

Ah, I see - well, the mindless pandering to sex appeal to sell anything does annoy me; I just read your statements as saying, effectively, "Sex should never be mentioned in games" and as you hadn't said anything about other mediums, I assumed it was limited to games.

Overall, I think most uses of sex in culture are unnecessary, I think its a key part of culture to at least acknowledge sex in some ways and more in some conditions.

Well I do think that games usually don't use sex well: even in Mass Effect, it annoyed me how the only way to fully romance a character inevitably led to sex. Love can exist without sex, but, like most media in our culture, that fact is hardly recognized (assuming love is even associated with sex in the first place).

And yeah, sorry, I didn't think to mention other forms of media. But yeah, that's the idea.

He has got a point when he notes the whole rather odd "Gratuitous violence, but no sex" thing. If it adds something, put it in... I guess.

EDIT:... yes, I did just reread that. And I DO see the double meaning. Unintentional.

The best sex I've seen in a game, is undoubtedly in some Neverwinter Nights modules - specifically 'Arandie'.

Its treatment of sex works very well in what is essentially a non-linear game. Arandie's strength in that it presents a very well-written depiction of a world (medieval going on modern) and the character's life in that world. Some of the sex is more gratuitous than other parts, but it fits in well, because you get a good sense that this is what that person's life is like.

Unlike most games, Arandie offers a very wide gamut of experiences. Just because the main character is an assassin, doesn't mean that the bulk of the gameplay is sneaking around and kiling people. In fact, there is overall very, very little combat at all. Instead, the game spans every face of the protagonist's life - her friendships, her relationships, the death of a loved one, her work, her ambitions, her awkward reunion with her parents, her one-night stands, her triumphing over her enemies, her failing miserably against her enemies etc. In a sense, it is almost biographical, yet as the game is non-linear, you have a lot of freedom as to what you want to do and gain a better understanding of the character. As such, the sex is present, but optional - as is much of the rest of the game. It's neither reward nor gameplay, it's flavour and it's characterisation.

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