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VGH #60: What a Downer

VGH #60: What a Downer

We’re getting all hot and bothered this week, and not just because it’s 103 degrees outside. The release of Lollipop Chainsaw prompts a decidedly PG-13 conversation about sex, sexuality and video games. NSFW!

Paul and D.J. are working their way through their backlogs and offer quick updates on Psychonauts and Bioshock.

We’ve also got thoughts on the new Mass Effect ending, Andrew Garfield’s pre-Spider-Man work, and the tenuous threads between Dane Cook and Capcom.

Episode Timeline:
Intro: 0:00
Viewer Mail: 2:12
Hangover/Backlog: 7:25
Sexy Chat: 33:00
Last Call: 60:55
Outro: 70:30

Listen and Subscribe:

Connect and Interact:

This Week’s Music:
“Dark Flute” and “Army of Assholes” from Sword & Sworcery LP and Indie Game: The Movie, by Jim Guthrie (Bandcamp, iTunes).

The Backloggery – Keep track of your collection of unbeaten games
Trailer for Never Let Me Go, starring Andrew Garfield.


  1. Erik Kubik
    Erik Kubik July 5, 2012

    Interesting discussion guys, Shadows of the Damned comes to mind, Catherine,or Mass Effect, I agree on what you guys said. Do games need sex? It seems more of a gimmick.

    • spaulsandhu
      spaulsandhu July 11, 2012

      I think in most games it is just a gimmick but there is definitely a current trend towards trying to make sexuality a more significant part of the gaming landscape.

  2. Courtney Sandhu
    Courtney Sandhu July 10, 2012

    I’m definitely more attracted to good voice acting than any sort of character image in the game. The guy who voices Yuri from tales of vesperia and Snow from FFXIII is my current infatuation.

    • spaulsandhu
      spaulsandhu July 11, 2012

      That guy can suck an egg.

      • Courtney Sandhu
        Courtney Sandhu July 11, 2012

        He suuuure can. There’s something he says after a battle in Vesperia that I could listen to over and over again hah. I can’t remember what it is now. I do like that Snow’s body type fits the voice waaaay better. Yuri was a skinny little boy with a super deep voice.

  3. Leigh
    Leigh July 11, 2012

    To answer the question, no, I don’t think video games are sexy. I always laugh at the sex scenes. The graphics and storytelling just aren’t there yet. I think Courtney has a great point about voices, though!

    One thing as a woman is that when I see a lot of fan service that’s obviously meant for young heterosexual guys and none for me, I feel excluded. I don’t particularly want gratuitous sexuality, but if it’s going to be there, I’d feel more welcome as a consumer if the fan service was more inclusive. Like I thought Spartacus on Starz was pretty silly with all the sex and violence but I felt like they at least wanted me in their audience. In contrast, most games that have muscular guys, they look tough but they’re not sexy. In World of Warcraft, the guys don’t even have a pants lump where their penis should be – and they spared how many polygons for the boobs? It’s not a major issue, but it does bug me a little bit. So yeah I think that if the women are hot then the men should be hot too, in most games.

    • metaly
      metaly July 17, 2012

      It’s sort of funny as much as I can tell that games have a lopsided take on sexuality, as a guy I’m sure most of it still goes over my head. I’d love to see games (and game coverage) magically reverse their gender biases and watch the average male gamer completely flip out.

      • Leigh
        Leigh August 16, 2012

        I went to a talk once at, I think it was an Austin Game Developers Conference, on how to portray women in games without alienating your female players. The presenter put up a picture of some male underwear models giving off the visual cues that she was warning against, and immediately, it was kind of a visible shift when a lot of the men in that room became really uncomfortable and they all moved awkwardly at the same time.

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