Oh Look, A Massive… Privates Trailer

Wahey! But ‘wahey’ in a measured, ‘this will hopefully be helpful for young person’s sex education’ sort of way. Zombie Cow’s Cannon Fodder-meets-venereal disease-meets Ghostbusters condomania title finally gets in-game footage, and it looks like this. Well, like the ‘this’ that is below this. Um. Beneath the cut, then. Yes.

There are some naughty words. There are some gags that may offend people who tend to get offended. You should watch it anyway. It’s very funny.

Obviously, there’s been some controversy around Privates, and the role of men within it. There’s room for some interpretation there, and also about *that* line at the start, which will, I suspect, raise a few hackles. Oh, don’t make me repeat it. Very much a Roger Rabbit Rule situation, I’d say.

Stepping back from individual factors, the broader issue is that Privates needs to be entertaining. It needs to be funny, it needs to be coarse, it needs to not be overwhelmingly serious even whilst documenting a serious subject. Otherwise, well, kids’ll rumble that it’s an educational thing. And then they won’t play it, because they’ll think it’s boring and not cool, man, not cool. If Zombie Cow get the shooting bits right, and make the gags funny (i.e. deliriously crude), those teenagers will hopefully flock to it and thus be stealth-indoctrinated with all-important information about how not to ruin their own and someone else’s life.

Never mind about us grown-ups and our desire for both excellent entertainment and moral forthrightness – risks are worth taking in order to make filthy-minded kids play the thing and understand the even greater risks attached to unprotected casual sex.

(I feel bad being even remotely serious about what’s an extremely amusing, and surprisingly pretty, trailer. But there you go. They can do the gags, I’ll do the solemnity.)


  1. Kid A says:

    Best opening line to a trailer… EVER.

    • DrugCrazed says:

      I think it’s damn awesome. I’m looking forward to it. It looks funny as hell.

      And safe sex blah blah blah. Though who here never thought about safe sex?

    • Thants says:

      I think about very little else.

  2. Lambchops says:

    “I’ll bring you back a present”

    Looks lile this’ll be pretty funny . . . . and educational of course, must not forget the education!

  3. SF Legend says:

    “I’ve just seen spunk on the monitor”

  4. PHeMoX says:

    “this will hopefully be helpful for young person’s sex education”

    Are you serious?? I don’t think this game was ever meant to be educational.

    To me it looks like a purely ‘for fun’ choice of theme.

    • Collic says:

      Appearances aside, it was commissioned for precisely that reason. And we all know educational video games only ever have a chance of suceeding if the kids don’t realise theyre educational.

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      Yeah, it’s commissioned by Channel 4’s educational department.


    • Alexander Norris says:

      It was commissioned by Channel 4 as part of a sex ed campaign, so yes, it was meant to be educational.

    • Chris says:

      Games are fun, Sex is fun. A game about sex should be fun. QED

    • TeeJay says:

      Channel 4 are the “naughty sibling” of the BBC and spend their time working out what they can get away with:

      Some previous examples:

      “Wank Week” link to en.wikipedia.org
      Big Brother
      a televised autopsy
      Derren Brown playing Russian Roulette “live”
      programmes about people showing off their grotty/bizarre diseases or getting naked
      Queer as Folk
      the uncut version of Lars von Trier film The Idiots
      The Greenhouse Conspiracy / Against Nature / The Great Global Warming Swindle
      a “Christmas Day Speech” by Presdient Ahmadinejad
      Brass Eye by Chris Morris
      The Mark Thomas Comedy Product

      …they also do highbrow stuff (eg. Flim4 productions, Unreported World)

  5. Grunt says:

    You know….if this actually works…and kids end up modifying their behaviour based on lessons taught by a game, then where does that leave us in the ‘Games generate violence’ debate?

    • greenB says:

      I’d argue that safe sex is planned (long-term) behavior, while the typical “omg games cause murder”-situation is a more spontaneous outburst… but I’m not a psychologist or anything.

    • Taillefer says:

      If it’s a success, I’m more concerned about kids running around loudly proclaiming that they’re aids.

    • Drexer says:

      The argument for videogame violence is based on influencing personality.

      The argument for this game is that it informs as you play along.

      A very big difference.

    • Theory says:

      “Games generate sexual violence”, obv.

  6. michaelar says:

    Oh dear God that’s awesome.

    We’re all going to the special hell for this; you know that, right?

  7. Springy says:

    The ‘Roger Rabbit Rule’? Don’t ever give the rabbit a drink?

  8. Bassism says:

    I thought this looked dumb. Now I think it looks awesome.


  9. Sergey says:

    Well… I guess they might say that this game made the kids violent towards spunk?

  10. Dood says:

    I love the music!

    By the way, is Privates going to be free to play? And more to the point: Is it going to be available to us continental peasants?

  11. US Citizen says:

    I am willing to revoke that whole “independence” thing if you’re willing to give us this game :D

  12. pedant says:

    When I was young the edgy/cool infotainment was watching a crudely animated figure having awkward sex and making a mess. Lesson being that sex leads to body fluid leakage. And generations before that had link to kulturarbete.blogspot.com (nsfw!).

    I much approve of this upgrade. As for the person up thread who said safe sex is planned long term, I say good luck with that, horny teenagers don’t plan, just hope they have condoms in reach and the sense to use them (playing a game inside an infected cock might give incentive there?).

    • skalpadda says:

      That book actually seems better than the sex ed I had, in the 90s. That is quite funny though :)

    • Thants says:

      Them having condoms is the planing.

  13. Jacques says:

    it scares me, deep down, well not really deep down, but… oh my, there could be a male version…. WHY

  14. Cooper says:

    What I want to know is where they get the idea that young teenagers (esp. boys) need sex ed. wrapped up in cartoon worlds, in-your-end-os and scatalogical humour.

    I have nothing against the tone of the game, nor the humour. It looks pretty good and them ZombieCow guys are quite funny. I just worry that, for all the good intentions, this is a stab at what someone thinks sex education should be.

    The vast majority of teenagers are usually very receptive to open, honest, clear discussion about sex & STIs. Even if it is a bit ‘boring’ or ‘uncool’. They’re interested in it (they’re teenagers for christs’ sake).

    Maybe I’m wrong. maybe C4 got hold of some important research that suggests young teenage boys are more receptive to sex-ed. if it’s wrapped up in this kind of packaging.
    But it seems to me like people are projecting their assumptions about teenage boys onto their receptivity to important information. And those assumptions are way off the mark.

    • Lambchops says:

      Channel 4 already seem to have the “open, honest, clear discussion” avenue pretty much well covered anyway. They did after all have a series a while back simply called The Sex Education Show. Guess they wanted to try something a bit different to go along with it.

  15. PleasingFungus says:

    “Coming, soon.”


  16. Alice says:

    So yes – free to download, PC only at this stage (XNA innit). No DRM, no geoIP, none of that gunk.

    To Cooper: the UK has the highest EU pregnancy rates, and rising STI rates, “particularly among young people”. Not sure there’s enough talking going about, tbh.

    • Cooper says:

      I didn’t read the links, so apologies if this is repeating something there.

      But, basically, one of the main issues with UK sex ed. (which exacerbates the teen-pregnancy isue) is that it hardly deviates from that outmoded “naming bits of the body” information-feeding-only approach.

      As well as the info, discussion is needed about the whole range of issues – not just STIs and sexual health but sexuality and sexual relationships as a whole.

      Cartoon-ifying the business of naming bits and providing info won’t help here. It’s the same old usless sex ed. as information via sexual health as a biology topic approach but with fart jokes.

    • Cooper says:

      I realise that I am of course pre-judging and dismissing the game unfairly. But I guess that’s my perogative as I anonymously sit behind this keyboard of mine.

      But I can’t help see the flaws in sex ed. in the UK more generally being repeated here.
      (And I’ll bypass the really disconcerting disembodiment and impersonalisation of genitals going on; that’s a discussion for some other blogs I’d reckon).

      But this is a game, and games are probably not the place to get into serious pedagological work on sexual relationships.
      Given the nature of the format, and that I have fondness for the developers, I’m sure that ZombieCow have done an ace job with the whole STI issue in cartoon-game format. It’s not as if more talking points aren’t welcomed, nor that there can’t be a bit of a laugh in sex ed.

  17. Tei says:

    I propose this video to fight STI’s.

    It looks appropiatelly scared to me.

  18. RC-1290'Dreadnought' says:

    Haha, sector 1138.

  19. TheSombreroKid says:

    Teenagers arn’t the only ones who know nothing about safe sex unfortunatly.

  20. TheSombreroKid says:

    Also, I Like how it costs 50p to get into the vagina, I wish!

  21. jeremypeel says:


    When did Channel 4 become so good for games?

  22. Aaron says:

    If this changes the sexual behaviour of children and adolescence I would be extremely surprised.

    Also what does that say about the human mind if it is successful? That our ability to make responsible decisions is based on our experience in a video game that trivialises sex.

    It looks like yet another belch from out of touch government stiffs and if I had children I would hope I have raised them in such a way that they would find something like this incredibly dull and patronising.


    • Thants says:

      Zombie Cow being hired to make a sex-ed shooter set in genitals is because of out of touch government stiffs? Are you even listening to yourself? If giving money to awesome indie game developers to make funny games is out of touch, I don’t want to be in touch.

  23. Mr_Day says:

    Hmm. I wonder if they will get into trouble for putting a toll booth in front of a giant vagina?

  24. DrazharLn says:

    Sheesh, you’d think there was frantic bonking going on everywhere in teenage life from you lot. The majority of abortions (and, I assume, the highest levels of pregnancy) occur to middle aged people.

    I was taught some meaningless sex-ed when I was about 12, but in secondary school I feel I learnt all that was necessary to protect myself and partners in later sex-ed sessions (run by marie-curie, actually).

    True, we were never taught anything about relationships, but safe sex was comprehensively covered, along with the symptoms of a bunch of STIs and the dangers and treatments inherent.

    The game looks fun, and will probably help teach people stuff, but don’t go saying that this is a problem with teenagers, we’re probably better educated about it than you were

  25. Jacques says:

    STIs, mmm I guess that’s new fangled way of saying STD, or a way used more commonly in other countries, but if this is true, what of the Subaru Legacy Sport STI edition, not the SWX, but the STI?

  26. Tacticus says:

    STIs are more encompassing than STD

    Sexually transmitted infection
    Sexually transmitted diseases
    Not all infections are diseases (you could argue that it is infecting someone with a parasite for 9 months but knocking someone up is certainly not a disease)

    Also 2 things.
    I’m going to take a guess and say that this is aiming to be one component of a comprehensive sex ed course rather than a standalone bombshell
    and 2
    they need to bring this to .au

    • cjlr says:

      “infecting someone with a parasite for 9 months”…

      This may be relevent.

  27. GetOutOfHereStalker says:

    finally someone made a game about my life

  28. Somnium says:

    Does anybody really think that this is intended to be the solitary means of sex education? Who the hell would sit somebody down in front of this game and expect that playing through it would teach them everything they need to know?

    It’s meant to have an educational element, yeah, but mostly it’s intended to be fun. Come on guys, lighten up. The psychological implications of this on adolescents is not what we should be focusing on here, given that it is a game about controlling ‘privates’ on their journey through some genitals.

    Remember when games were entertainment?

  29. jeremypeel says:

    Speaking as a mother… I mean, speaking as someone who experienced UK sex education relatively recently (I’m 20), I would have loved to have an alternative to the patronising and standoffish drivel I was subjected to in school. Particulary if it had looked as fun as Privates does.