There’s nothing new about 18+ MMOs. I’d wager that the first person to say: ‘Imagine a fantasy world filled with thousands of characters played by real people’, heard: ‘Imagine if they were all naked’ shortly after. It’s part and parcel of the human experience. There’re videos of people masturbating to characters from World of Warcraft all over You Tube, and ‘MMOs’ like Second Life have been promoting ‘digital love’ since the beginning of ‘digital time’.
Though, try as I might, I’ve never really experienced any of it. I thought that by now I’d have at least stumbled upon something raunchy; after all, I do spent a good 90% of my life playing MMOs on the Internet. But I haven’t. It’s the industry’s best-kept secret. And today, I’m going to dig it up.
KEEP YOUR PANTS ON
First, some clarification. 18+ Adult MMOs aren’t all about sex. That was my first surprise on this journey into the nether-regions of the online gaming world. I’d always assumed that if you were going to limit your audience to gamers over 18, you’d might as well include a few boobs for good measure. Apparently this is not always the case. There are a multitude of 18+ MMORPGs, for example, that don’t even offer much in the way of cleavage — instead, they opt for a more subtle approach to adult gaming, a slathering of blood, guts and gore.
Requiem: Bloodymare. There will be blood. And guts. No boobs, though.
Requiem: Bloodymare is a decent example of this, as it helps me to illustrate my second point: not all 18+ Adult MMOs are really 18+ Adult MMOs. Requiem is a prime example of an advertising ploy designed to attract gamers by promoting ‘ unique, 18+ content’, when really it’s just a dark world filled with a few grotesque monsters and a lot of blood. I’m sure there are a great many people out there that would consider this type of content 18+, but for the sake of comparison, it’s definitely on the ‘low-key’ side of the discretion border.
Then there’s the much-awaited World of Darkness, slated for release sometime before the end of the millennium. This Vampire-themed MMORPG is officially in the same boat as Requiem, in that it offers a world of violence and gore typically only suited to adults, but doesn’t stray beyond the borders of acceptable discretion by showing undead boobies. Instead, it’s assumed that you’ll traverse a dark and mysterious post-modernistic world in the shoes of a blood-sucking vampire; scaling rooftops, stealing the life-blood from virgins, and creating characters that look a lot like Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt. Cool? Hell yeah. 18+? We’ll see.
DIP YOUR FEET IN; THE WATER’S WARM
Next, some perspective. Though most of the MMOs we’ll look at from here on are ‘sexy’ in nature, there’s still a thick line of distinction to be drawn between titles like Seven Souls Online, which offers ‘revealing’ armour, and 3Feel, which allows you to have ‘digital sex’ with members of the opposite sex. These, in my opinion, are the lowest and highest points of distinction that can be made in the ‘sex’ category of the 18+ Adult MMO, though there are many levels in between.
Seven Souls Online… Meh, I’ve had better.
Seven Souls Online is to the sex-themed genre what Requiem: Bloodymare is to the gore-themed genre: a prime example of putrid marketing strategy, that lures players in with buzzwords like ’18+ Adult’, but offers very little in the style. In essence, Seven Souls Online features a small amount of revealing armour, in-game gambling, and not much else. It’s a stock standard MMORPG with a well-paid marketing team, and as such, it’s at the bottom of my ‘sexy’ MMO list.
Moving up the list we come to Kabod Online, another 18+ Adult MMORPG that strives to combine adult-flavoured content with MMORPG gameplay, and does so creatively, and enjoyably. This, for the record, is my kind of Adult MMO. It offers gambling, dating and flirting mechanics, and a bunch of innovative networking elements designed for a mature audience, but it also takes the visuals to a new level by offering a unique armour degradation system. Basically, your character has 3 levels of armour degradation: if you were to purchase a new piece of gear it’d look a lot like the kind of armour you’d expect to find in any traditional MMORPG: slightly revealing, but nothing over the top. Engage in some Player vs. Player combat however, and you’ll find that as you’re attacked, pieces of it will begin to fall off; this is the second stage, ‘partially armoured’. Suffer a decent beating and you’ll be rendered almost completely nude, making for a realistic spin on an otherwise seedy style of gaming.
This right here is what we call innovation. It’s new, fresh, funky, and so long as you’re over 18 years of age, it’s acceptable in our modern world. Bring it up another notch and you have Playboy.com’s very own Poisonville, an action-orientated MMO that emulates Grand Theft Auto 4. Surprisingly, Poisonville (at present) doesn’t actually offer a lot in the way of ‘sexy’ gameplay or content; however, all of the female character models are based on Playboy models, and violence oozes from every corner of the world as you assume the role of a convicted felon and blast your way to righteousness.
Libito Online is not your average MMO.
HOT, HOT, HOT!
Finally, we come to the real 18+ Adult MMO, or if you’d prefer, the XXX genre. That’s what I’m calling it, anyway, as the content here FAR surpasses that found in the now traditional Adult MMOs highlighted above. This is where we find games like 3Feel, Libido and Red Light Centre.
In these XXX MMOs the traditional MMORPG elements such as questing, fighting and levelling up are thrown out the window almost entirely. With the exception of Libido, which uses cartoon-style visuals and a fully-fledged MMORPG world to offer a more creative spin on the style, these XXX titles don’t offer much in the way of variety at all. In fact, the only real ‘goal’ is to dress up your avatar, head to the nearest nightclub or bar and find someone to ‘spend the night with’.
XXX MMOs also have their own ‘discretion meter’; some offer limited visuals and options, while others will pretty much allow you to fulfil any fantasy that comes to mind. Naturally, this is where our adventure comes to an end, as it’s where my journey into this world of debauchery and deviance began to stagnate. I’m sure that some people out there might enjoy ‘digital sex’ with other people (though, dude, that chick’s probably a dude…), but it’s not something I’ve ever tried myself, nor something I plan to try in the foreseeable future.
Over 3,000,000 users? Really? REALLY?!
Though, without fully delving into the mysterious depths of the XXX MMO, I feel like we’ve accomplished our goals here today. We’ve taken a solid look at a variety of 18+ Adult MMOs, genres and categories, and if you’ve learned half as much reading this as I have writing it, then you’re more than up to speed with the world of 3D Fantasy, Violence, and Sex. Until next time, beloved readers, this is Cody Hargreaves telling you to keep your pants on… or don’t. It’s really your choice. I’m just here to help you make it.