The long-standing mystery surrounding the Australian government's intolerant attitude toward videogames has just been made a little clearer: It turns out that in the land Down Under, "games" are more popular than "porn."
Google's search analysis tool has revealed that the most popular search term in Australia in 2008 is "games," a bit of a surprising statistic given the fact that, as we all know, the internet is for porn. Apparently our Foster's-chugging cousins didn't get the memo on that one, although people in Queensland and New South Wales can at least claim to be doing their best to get it up - the porn search numbers, that is. Searches for "porn" were most frequent in those states, while people in Tasmania and the Northern Territory came in behind... in search statistics.
As the Australian site Gameplayer points out, however, the statistics don't account for searches for "game" and "porn" at the same time, a stealthy tactic that can really put the solid in your snake. "Forget searching for live-action pornography in this digital day and age, gaming pornography is to games what Hentai is to Manga," reporter Nathan Lawrence wrote on the site. "How many of us have 'accidentally' stumbled on a super-revealing shot of Lara Croft, a YouTube video of the naked version of Dead or Alive Beach Volleyball or been inspired by the girls of Soul Calibur IV?"
Of course, pedantic, terminally-dull commentators will remind us that people who have spent more than two days online know that successful porn searches have to be refined using terms like **********, **** *********** and of course, the perennial favorite, ******* *******. But none of those words, or anything even remotely similar, were among the lexicon of most popular searches in Australia, indicating a dedication to gaming that those of us in more sexually-repressed climes can only hope to emulate.
I, for one, am not afraid to admit to installing the "nude" mod for The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, although in my defense I did it entirely for aesthetic and artistic purposes and played the game exclusively in "pants-on" mode. The Witcher, on the other hand...