Welcome! Why don't you come into the kitchen and pull up a chair. Would you like some coffee? It's freshly brewed. The cups are over in the cupboard to the right. It's serve yourself around this household, after all I'm not your maid. So I invited you over because I thought we'd have a little talk about sex in video games. I'm not talking about nudity, like looking at Laura Croft's pixel boobs, or Cleopatra's giant bosom in which babies were emitted in Dante's Inferno. Oh don't give me that innocent and confused look like you don't know what I'm talking about. It was weird! Seriously. Flying babies and tongues. What the hell were those people thinking! But I digress, for what I'm talking about is the actual act of having sex in video games.
Just mentioning the word sex can result in some pretty funny reactions from people. You sometimes get the previously mentioned reaction of confusion; disbelief that the topic is being brought up. Direct eye contact is broken, you notice slight blushing, and you can tell the person is uncomfortable with the conversation before even knowing in which direction you'll be taking it. Then you have people who are completely comfortable talking about sex. They'll talk openly about it, crack a few jokes, and sometimes tell you amazing stories in which you can turn around at a later date and embarrass the hell out of them. That's always fun. Especially when there's drinking involved. And let's not forget the children. Talking to your parents about sex is usually one of the most uncomfortable situations to be put in as a child. Sure, you've talked about it with your friends, often picking up false information along the road, and you've seen it on the internet, on the TV, and read about it in books. But that first time your parents sit you down for the "talk" all you can think about is running in the other direction.
One other response I got from a younger man, a man in his 30's, was that maybe if developers wouldn't try to hide mature content in games it would be more acceptable. Let's bring up GTA: San Andreas and the little sex scene more notably know as The Hot Coffee
. This mini game was inaccessible under normal play in the 2004 release of the game. However, in 2005 the mod to enable it gained public awareness, and boy what a shit storm of controversy came down over it. Suddenly the ESRB, The Federal Trade Commission, Hillary Clinton - hell, even an 85-year-old grandmother, (who filed a lawsuit) went after Rockstar. Hot Coffee is still referenced in Rockstar's 2008 release of Grand Theft Auto IV, but there are no mods for it like in San Andreas..... or are there? Hmmm...
So we keep pushing for more adult themes in video games, but the industry really hasn't done a very good job of representing us in the past. And although most of the time the media makes a mountain out of a mole hill, like in the case of Mass Effect, it's the past examples that still leave a tainted mark on the industry's record. I should note that I'm for adult themes and sexual activity in video games that are rated M. I would not rise up, torch in hand and chant, "Down with Duke Nukem!" I feel it has a right to exist. I would hope, however, that the industry delivers better quality games in the future as it pushes towards more mature content in games. Until that time, when yet another reporter feels the need to stir the pot and get everyone's attention back to saving our children from the vulgarities of the world, we'll have to be ready to stand our ground and fight back for our rights. And the parent's can go to bed at night and feel proud that even if they don't know who their child is sexting with, they at least know there's sexual content in video games. Amen.
I am still curious though. What do you think of sex in video games? Do you think it belongs or should it be left out? And where do you think developers should take it? What would you like to see? More important - what are you still doing here? Do you have any idea what time it is? I do have a life you know. Get the hell out of my kitchen, and put that coffee cup in the dishwasher and the beer bottle in the trash. I've already told you I'm not your maid!
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